Our Pirate Warrior deck guide features the best deck list for Season 43, with Mulligan advice, strategy tips, card combos and synergies.
Pirate Warrior is a Hearthstone deck archetype which blends together loads of very potent synergies contained within the game's Pirate category of cards. Alongside many of these very aggressive minions, you also have access to the Warrior's deadly weapons which help you stop the opponent developing a strong board, and in the process leave your minions free to keep chipping away at the enemy hero.
Assuming you can get off to a strong start - which is absolutely crucial here - then you should be able to very quickly craft a dominating presence on the board that will leave your opponent struggling to cope with the onslaught - let alone build an army of their own. Although this isn't a new deck to hit the game by any means, it's the last few expansions which have added some major fuel to this fire. The good news for those with limited funds though is that you only need one or two new cards from the Frozen Throne set to get going.
In our essential guide to playing Pirate Warrior, we've got a solid Frozen Throne deck list to get going with, followed by an overview of how to actual play it. We've also shone a light on the Mulligan process, and outlined all of the combos that exist in this particular version. This should ensure a swift ascent at the start of a new meta!
META UPDATE 10/10/2017
Things have yet to settle down properly for the Pirate Warrior in the wake of all those nerfs. We've seen many additional experiments be tested for the archetype over the last seven days, and we believe the deck list being highlighted today represents the most consistently powerful version right now.
The most significant changes of all involve the ditching of both Bittertide Hydra cards, along with Spellbreaker and Phantom Freebooter. The value of that last card has been a long-running subject of debate, but it'll be interesting to see whether or not losing that Spellbreaker proves problematic when it comes to mid to late-game obstacles.
In place of all three of these card types you'll now find a pair of Mortal Strikes and another pair of Naga Corsairs. We'll revisit this deck list again in a week from now, but the old version of the deck has been preserved in the comments in case you'd like to stick with last week's list.,
Use the following links to quickly navigate to the section of the guide you're most interested in right now!
Pirate Warrior deck list and strategy
There have been a lot of experiments with Pirate Warrior in recent weeks, as the best players try to find a way of improving its performance in the post-nerf meta. This is as good as things get for the archetype right now, although we'll be reviewing this deck list on an ongoing basis during october.
|2 x N'Zoth's First Mate||1 x Patches the Pirate|
|2 x Upgrade!||2 x Southsea Deckhand|
|2 x Heroic Strike||2 x Bloodsail Raider|
|2 x Bloodsail Cultist||2 x Southsea Captain|
|2 x Fiery War Axe||2 x Dread Corsair|
|2 x Frothing Berserker||2 x Naga Corsair|
|2 x Kor'kron Elite||1 x Leeroy Jenkins|
|2 x Mortal Strike|
|2 x Arcanite Reaper|
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From the very beginning of every match to the very end your job with this deck is to blend together the Pirate synergies sprinkled throughout the deck list, so as to put immediate pressure on your opponent from the earliest turns - and then close the match down as rapidly as possible.
The weapons in your hand - bolstered, perhaps, by some of your Pirates - will allow you to keep the board under control, while your minions begin the process of rapidly bringing down your opponent's health total. It almost always makes more sense to use your weapons on taking out enemy minions rather than the opponent's face. It helps them push on with the aggro work, and your hero's health is just another resource at the end of the day.
Something to also keep in mind is that it can be easy to run out of cards quite quickly with this deck, so it's important to keep one eye on your potential damage output, and think about how close you are to closing down the match. If you're a turn or two away from lethal, it's much more important to forget the state of the board, start racing towards the finishing line, and let your opponent do the job of clearing down your minions. Spotting that precise moment when it arrives is a key part of playing any aggro deck, and can only be truly mastered by playing many, many matches.
As with so many other aggro decks in Hearthstone, it's extremely important that you familiarise yourself with all of the most important combos you have at your disposal. You'll find the bulk of our strategic advice towards the bottom of this article in the synergies section. You've got a lot of low-Mana options at your disposal, and so mastering these combos will leave you well-positioned to make a powerful play at just about every single stage of the game.
Here are some tips for dealing with specific opponent types:
Although your focus is on bringing the opponent down to zero health as quickly as possible, it often makes sense to make favourable trades in aggro match-ups - at least during the early stages of a match when you're jossling for control of the board.
There's no time for trading in slower match-ups, as you'll find yourself blocked out of the game if you don't start racing immediately. Keep the pressure up on them relentlessly, and make them do the trading in this case. Do whatever it takes to protect your board in the early turns, as you'll struggle to mount a comeback if you lose your early push.
Here's a video of Trump playing Pirate Warrior. The deck list is very different as it's from the previous meta, but the broad principles of playing remain the same and so the video should still provide some very useful strategic insight:
More great Warrior guides:
- 1. Pirate Warrior - Pirate Warrior deck list guide
- 2. Control Warrior - Control Warrior deck list guide
- 3. Blood Warrior - Blood Warrior deck list guide
- 4. Best Hearthstone decks - The best Hearthstone decks - October 2017
- 5. Best Wild decks - The best Wild Hearthstone decks
- 6. Tier List - Hearthstone deck tier list
Pirate Warrior Mulligan guide
The golden rule of playing this kind of deck is that you always return Patches the Pirate if he shows up in your starting hand. He's better off remaining in your deck pile, from where he'll be summoned onto the board for free when you play a Pirate card.
The best cards to go rummaging for with Pirate Warrior are N'Zoth's First Mate, Fiery War Axe, Southsea Deckhand and Bloodsail Raider. Get a decent opening hand with two or more of those cards and you'll be well on your way to a fast victory.
Pirate Warrior tips, combos and synergies
Here's an overview of the combos contained within this version of Pirate Warrior. If you've any tips of your own for playing this deck, sign up and share them in the comments!
- Bloodsail Cultist has obvious synergy with every other Pirate class of card in this deck. There needs to be another pirate on the board and a weapon in your hand for the effect to trigger though, so check and double-check your options.
Upgrade! will give your current weapon an extra +1 / +1 of stats. If you've not got a blade in your hand at the time of casting this spell, it will instead grant you a 1 / 3 weapon.
- The cost of playing Dread Corsair out is reduced by the Attack value of the weapon you have in your hand.
- Plan your turns very carefully. A partial trade elsewhere, so as to boost Frothing Berserker up, may prove to be a very powerful move once you've double-checked your maths.
- It might seem a little silly to mention, but don't forget to actually use Patches the Pirate after he's summoned onto the board - it's easy to forget you can use him straight away before hitting End Turn!
- Any of your weapons will gift Southsea Deckhand the Charge mechanic. Again, the weapon needs to be in your hand, so don't accidentally use up your last charge of the sword before making this play!
- Southsea Captain will boost the strength of associated cards, but note that the effect is not permanent. When he evaporates, so do those bonus stats.
- A note for newcomers: Heroic Strike does indeed stack with the Attack value of any weapon you might have in your hand at the time. Note that this extra damage is not transferred to Bloodsail Raider though.
- As standard, Mortal Strike only does four points of damage. This increases to six points if you have twelve or less Health, however. Armor is not taken into account here, just your raw health value.
- If you've a weapon in your hand, playing Naga Corsair will increase it's Attack strength by a single point.