Why did I make this deck?
I was inspired to make the deck after seeing Shadow Word: Pain and Shadow Madness in action. So with the inspiration there, I wanted to see if this deck archetype worked. I created a rough draft of the deck, played 2-3 games of unranked then went to go play my first ranked games. At first I was playing against people who obviously didn’t understand card games as well as I did and so I steamrolled my way to Two Star Masters.

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Here is the original decklist:

Priest Control Mk I

So first I will explain why I chose each card, even though most were just because I had nothing else.

  • Nat Pagle: I chose him because I just really like this card. He is a high-priority target for the opponent, low cost and massive value. Granted, I get really lucky with his drawing and get it ~75% of the time. His early game presence is accented by the few Priest removal spells of Shadow Word: Pain and Shadow Madness. He also is good mid-game when you have enough taunt to protect him.
  • Spellbreaker: At the time I didn’t have any copies of Ironbeak Owl, and I needed damage for the deck, so this naturally fit better. In my opinion, the Owl dies too easy to be worth it, so if you plan on running it, it’s almost more worth it to just run Silence.
  • Imp Master: This card combos really well with the Priest’s hero power and Northshire Cleric. It’s value on wheels.
  • Azure Drake: As Trump says, and I agree with, this is one of the strongest cards in the game. While this deck can only use the spellpower on two cards, it’s still card advantage since it’s a 5 cost 4/4 with draw a card. It’s a solid card all around.
  • Stormwind Champion: At the time of creation, I was quickly browsing cards for a win condition, and stumbled across this. This made complete sense with Imp Master so I decided that a 6/6 for 7 that also buffs all my Imps is a great win condition.
  • Acolyte of Pain: As with Imp Master, this card is value on wheels with a priest. It is also a strong pick in the current meta since so many people are running Novice Engineer.
  • Abomination: This card didn’t combo well with Imp Master, but it definitely was too good not to add. It is a great body with a very relevant ability. Since Holy Nova is the only board wipe that Priest has, this was a nice alternative.
  • Northshire Cleric: This addition was made after I already decided to run Imp Master, since it curves well and combos amazingly with it. Also, the 1/3 body for 2 is not bad.
  • Auchenai Soulpriest: This is one of the few replacements I could think of for Shadowform, since I was originally thinking of using that as my primary removal engine. However, after testing this, it seemed to actually be better than Shadowform, since it is possible to lose it when in dire need of a heal and it gives you a 3/5 body. Though it says 4 mana cost… I often ignore it until turn 6 since it has an immediate impact on the game. I often read the card as “6 mana 3/5: Battlecry 2 damage, your healing does damage”. This makes it slightly too slow for its effect, but still decent removal and body.
  • Thoughtsteal: I honestly have no idea why I added this, but it’s one of the only 3 drops that works in the deck. It’s the closest thing we can get to Arcane Intellect. Even though I say that, this card has performed amazingly for me for some reason. It’s removal or win conditions out of nowhere. If played early, it is also nice information on your opponents deck.
  • Shadow Word Pain: I explained above that this was one of the reasons I wanted to build the deck. This card is just so good. It is a dead card against bombs, but amazing from turn 1 to turn 4 and sometimes turn 5. This takes out Sen’Jin Shieldmasta, Fen Creeper, Questing Adventurer(Most of the time), Pint Sized SummonerAl’Akir the Windlord, DemolisherImpMasterAcolyte of PainFlametongue TotemGurubashi Berserker… I think you get the idea.
  • Holy Smite: This was added because it gains power from Azure Drake, and because it helps give consistency in removing early threats like Pint Sized Summoner or Knife Juggler.
  • Shadow Madness: Another reason why this deck was made. After seeing this in action, it is OFTEN a two for one and can clear pesky utility minions by taking their taunt and killing it. If used properly, this card is way too good to not use.
  • Fade: This gives the deck a way to prevent early damage when combined with Acolyte of Pain or Northshire Cleric, while also being a cantrip. I considered Sunfury Protector, but settled on this.
  • Holy Nova: Our only Priest class card to help with mass board control besides Auchenai Soulpriest + Circle of Healing. It’s a must-have.

While this deck worked well… It was very quirky and gimmicky. It didn’t play consistently even with the amount of value and card draw. The Imp Masters were, while value, very low impact. Even when paired with Stormwind Champion, it couldn’t quite contend with most other cards since the Imps tended to die easily to Rogues/Mages/Druids. Anything with mass board control like Hellfire, Consecration or Holy Nova just destroyed this combo. That isn’t the only thing either. Aggro decks had too many 2 health creatures that the Imps couldn’t deal with without going in two at a time, which took too long to build up enough Imps to do so. Another problem this deck ran into was finishing. I often would have 5-6 cards in hand when my opponent would have one or none, but I couldn’t finish out the game because all I had was Northshire Cleric or Acolyte of Pain since the opponent would use their removal on theStormwind Champions and the Imps would be suiciding to be removal before the Champion came out. Despite all that trouble, the deck got Two Star Master from just value.

Next comes the point at which the deck becomes more efficient and consistent. I needed to replace my win-cons and mid-game control of Stormwind Champion and Imp Master. At this point, I went back through my deck and looked for new cards. My new cards had to let me deal with mid-game decently and also be anti-aggro. Mana Wraith tickled my fancy quite a lot, but since my deck was very creature heavy I had to take that into consideration. At some point I had added Sunfury Protector over Fade, since the body was more useful than the card draw against most decks, but as soon as I added Mana Wraith, those were immediately swapped out. As for a win condition, I settled on Gurubashi Berserker. While he is very vulnerable to silence, he combo’d well withLesser Heal, which required no extra cards like the previous wincon. I’m still searching for an alternative to him. As for theSpellbreakers, with the addition of Mana Wraith, I didn’t like having a possible 5-drop silence card, so I tossed in the Ironbeak Owl, even though I like the Spellbreaker more. To try and stifle my mid-game problem, I tossed in Defender of Argus to beef up a Mana WraithAcolyte of PainIronbeak Owl or Nat Pagle. He seems to be very mediocre so far and I might replace him with Sen’Jin Shieldmasta. With the loss of the Imps, I added another Abomination to deal with the more aggro decks, and even stifle the mid-game pain a bit.

After a while of breaking down the deck idea and building it anew, I ended with this baby.

Priest Control Mk II

I still have a decent problem early game, but as soon as I get an answer to that I will post it! There are a few cards I would like to add, but I don’t have enough dust for yet, like one more Mana AddictTwilight Drakes and maybe Emperor Cobras and Mass Dispels. Someone also suggested Argent Commander for the mid-game. It’s tempting, but again I need more dust.

The plan for improving the deck from here on out is pretty much converting some of the minions into spells to better combo with Mana Wraith and Mana Addict. If I end up getting enough spells that work well, then I might add in Gadgetzan Auctioneer for a draw engine.

I have a current rendition of the deck that adds a Defender of Argus, a Mana Addict(since I only have one at the moment) and twoJungle Panthers to help with Mid-game. I replaced the Acolytes of Pain and the Gurubashi Berserker with these cards to see how it will work.

Thoughts and comments are plenty welcome! I encourage all that are interested to try something similar out or watch me play my version and try to help me out with my version by giving advice on card alternatives. 🙂

Thanks for reading my enormous wall of text!

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