Control Onslaught (R4 to LEGEND, with guide)

By: Daghter
View other Decks by Daghter
Posted: 3 months ago
Updated: 3 months ago
Outdated (Madness patch)
Crafting Cost: 19200crystal
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March is a lunatic month and requires a lunatic deck.
After struggling on the ladder for a bit, I came up with a stupid control battlemage deck that was not supposed to go above R4. Sadly, it got me to legend in two days.
This deck is jack of all trades and master of none, but that's often enough to win before your opponent realizes what you're doing, which is very hard to tell because I don't know that either, half of the time.
There's basically three types of deck on the ladder now, so I'll consider our options when facing them and explain what I usually do to avoid being destroyed with this crappy deck.

They're easy, there's not much of a choice here. Keep control package/stabilizers in your starting hand, which means you're not taking firebolts. What you want to keep are Wardcrafter, Daggerfall Mage, Earthbone Spinner, Dushnikh Yal Archer, Shrieking Harpy and the high priority Cunning Ally. It's ok to keep Fire Storm or Ice Storm, prefering Fire over Ice due to lower mana requirement and chance to be able to control at least a lane with your creatures. What you do here is basically remove your opponent's threats until he runs out of cards, hope to get a prophecy on rune break and pray he doesn't play too many hand refills. Might work, might not, but that's just how it goes against aggro most of the times. Usually worked for me, but I suck and definitely got lucky in all those games.
After your opponent is drained, get big board presence and smash his face.
In a way, this playstyle can give you a game against midrange too, but that's slightly different. Sorcerer and all heavy-ward decks are harder because of the lack of silence, so you have to dig some using your thieves and get perfect board control for actions, which means that you try to fight for the board (possibly on field lane), but make sure you take your opponent's creatures to the point that storms or bolts can act as panic buttons. Fell The Mighty is good to keep, but try to save it for Lava Atronach, if you suspect opponent is playing Mighty Conjuring.

This deck shines against control. It has many viable options to refill hand and the good thing is your refills are opponent's cards, which happens to be hard removal in control decks, most of the time. Keep Riften Pickpocket, Cunning Ally and either guards or warded stuff to have board presence, force removal from opponent and stall until you get good board presence and, again, drain your opponent to a poor hand. That worked a LOT of times against Tribunal decks, works less against Telvanni Conscription decks. In that case, your viable options are two: Ice Storm followed by Memory Wraith after a conscription, or Ancano followed by The Red Year. Believe me, that's not a meme, that's your win condition. It did win me an awful lot of games. And felt so damn good.

Those two type of decks are commonly found on the ladder and are a freaking pain in the rear to deal with. Dealing with Namira Warrior is probably easier and I'll cover that first.
Strenght of Namira Warrior is card draw from either Namira's Shrine or Disciple of Namira. Said that, you HAVE to keep Dushnikh Yal Archer in your hand to destroy those supports, while dealing with the Disciple is easier (ton of actions to do that). They'll just get to the point where their graveyard will be too tempting not to Journey, so keep that in mind and try to use Memory Wraith before that. Also, be mindful of Doomcrag Vampire and praise Talos he has the perfect health for Lightning Bolt. It's a long fight, always is, but it's definitely doable.
Side note: this applies to the Namira Archer variant out there too. In my experience, though, the Archer variant is weaker and definitely easier to deal with.

Ramp warrior is different and you don't always have a good way to deal with it. You'll hardly ever find yourself in the same situations in different matches, so you have to play in a versatile way and understand your opponent's choices. Thief of Dreams helps with that, since allows you to see a card in opponent's hand (and if you're lucky, also to take a copy of it). If your opponent is going to summon a graveyard creature, make sure you banish its graveyard before he can do that. Think about the advantages he might get from those creatures and then act accordingly. It's probably fine to let him have a Night Shadow if he doesn't have enough mana to follow the rez with a Rage, it's definitely not fine allowing him to ramp crazy with Pure Blood Elder, or get a Night Talon Lord if he might play Squish. Value your Wraths and consider they are also fairly hard to deal with, so might be ok to force a removal from him or just go face if he doesn't. Your win conditions are board control and a poor graveyard, or freaking Ancano memeing again. Squish onto that, Unstoppable Rage.

Hope you enjoy this crappy deck, it's so bad it might eventually be good. Eventually.

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Can't win vs control decks... Probably cuz i'm stupid. Can't reach legend from r1 for 3 weeks zzz...
1 Reply
Daghter 2 months ago
Well, control was never a big issue for me, so you might be making small mistakes here and there that sum up into a defeat. I usually tried not to play more than one card per turn in the early game, save hard removal for big creatures and avoid taking out my big boys if I suspected or knew opponent had a way to steal them. Also tried to avoid drain abuse by banishing discard pile in Tribunal matchups (taking Archcanon Saryoni out of the way really helps there). I think this deck gave me the highest WR vs control than vs any other deck, so I really don't know. The only thing I can say is that the meta might have changed a bit now, but control deck don't change that much during the season anyway. What kind of issues were you having? Maybe I can help a bit.

[Edit] I forgot one thing: NEVER EVER break a rune until you have solid board presence and can reach lethal in two turns or less. A single card can change the tide of the battle in control matchups.
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