Our Control Warrior deck list guide features the best Rastakhan deck list for Season 57 of Hearthstone (December 2018). Our Control Warrior guide also contains Mulligan advice, card combos and strategy tips.
Control Warrior is a Hearthstone deck archetype that requires the wielder of it to - rather unsurprisingly - maintain control of the board right throughout every stage of a match. This is achieved through the use of efficient removal cards in the early game, and a slowly snowballing threat in the mid to late-game that should overwhelm the opponent altogether.
It's a deck archetype that's never really gone out of fashion, although it does require you to have rather deep pockets - hence its nickname: Wallet Warrior. If you've got a solid collection of Hearthstone cards though, you should find this deck to be one of the most dependable during your climb up the ladder. It certainly does a fantastic job of dealing with the swarm of aggro decks that are so prevalent at the start of each expansion. If you're in no rush to climb, then it's a steady way to hold back the competition, even if matches can drag on a bit.
In our Control Warrior guide, we'll start with a breakdown of one of the most common, consistent deck lists being used right now, before outlining the detailed strategy involved in playing this archetype correctly. After that we've got some Mulligan suggestions for you, along with a teardown of all the most important combos and synergies in the deck.
UPDATE - RASTAKHAN'S RUMBLE LAUNCH
It looks as though Control Warrior is going to lean towards the new Dragon cards for its foundations in Rastakhan's Rumble. Here's an early theorycrafted version of the deck you can play at launch, although note that it is subject to rapid change. It was created by Regiskillbin.
Control Warrior deck list - Rastakhan’s Rumble launch
|1 x Dead Man's Hand||2 x Firetree Witchdoctor|
|2 x Dragon Roar||2 x Stonehill Defender|
|2 x Execute||2 x Scaleworm|
|2 x Slam||2 x Twilight Drake|
|1 x Warpath||2 x Dragonmaw Scorcher|
|2 x Shield Block||1 x Primordial Drake|
|2 x Smolderthorn Lancer||1 x Ysera|
|2 x Blood Razor|
|1 x War Master Voone|
|1 x Brawl|
|2 x Emberscale Drake|
Select and copy the long ID string below, then create a deck in Hearthstone to export this deck into your game.
Deck Import ID: AAECAQcGS6IJyccCjs4Cm/MCkocDDJEG/weNCLIIm8ICzM0CifECgYcDi4cD6IkD7IkDqosDAA==
Note that everything below this point refers to an earlier version of Control Warrior and will be updated shortly after launch. Thanks for your patience as we battle to update Metabomb for a new expansion!
Control Warrior deck list and strategy
This is the most successful Control Warrior list that's being run at the current stage of the Boomsday meta.
|2 x Omega Assembly||2 x Acolyte of Pain|
|2 x Shield Slam||2 x Giggling Inventor|
|2 x Cornered Sentry||1 x Harrison Jones|
|1 x Dead Man's Hand||1 x The Lich King|
|2 x Drywhisker Armorer|
|2 x Execute|
|2 x Warpath|
|2 x Weapons Project|
|2 x Blood Razor|
|2 x Brawl|
|1 x Dr. Boom, Mad Genius|
|1 x Geosculptor Yip|
|1 x Grommash Hellscream|
|1 x Scourgelord Garrosh|
|1 x The Boomship|
Select and copy the long ID string below, then create a deck in Hearthstone to export this deck into your game.
Deck Import ID: AAECAQcI0gKQB47OAsLOAp/TAurqArj2ApL4AgtLogSRBvsMvsMCzM0Cz+cCm/MC9PUC4vgCg/sCAA==
Control Warrior aims to do exactly what its name would suggest: take control of the game by removing or denying its opponent’s plays to completely starve them of resources, and then win in the late game with many powerful legendary cards.
The deck is packed with a ludicrous amount of removal that can comfortably answer every single move your opponent makes turn after turn – whether they attempt to develop a large board or focus all their Mana into a single minion.
Then, you have near limitless value in your late game options – everything from Dr. Boom, Mad Genius to Geosculptor Yip can keep generating minions for you even when you’re well into fatigue. It’s something you’ll find much easier to survive through compared to your opponent, especially when you have Dead Man’s Hand to refill your deck too.
Early game: Take a slow and reactive approach in the early game - you really don’t need to rush anything at all. Clear your opponent’s creatures where you can, or lure them into playing more so you can take everything out with a single board clear. You can also look to draw cards using Acolyte of Pain, but try to combine it with small damage effects such as Warpath and Blood Razer to get even more value. Even spending your turn using Armor Up isn’t a disaster.
Mid game: Continue your reactive control approach to the game and you’ll prevent your opponent from ever getting a foothold in the match. Cards like Brawl and Giggling Inventor are just more roadblocks to their progress in the mid game, while you should have built up enough Armor by now to make Shield Slam an instant kill on almost any single target.
Late game: Time to switch gears and assert yourself in the match properly. Practically any seven Mana or more card you drop at this stage is going to have a significant impact and as you keep doing this turn after turn the pressure will be too much for your opponent to handle.
Dr. Boom, Mad Genius and Omega Assembly is an extremely powerful combo that allows you to create an army of Mechs with Rush. Meanwhile, Geosculptor Yip can forge countless expensive minions if you’ve kept your Armor value high. Or you could just play The Boomship and throw three of your giant late-game minions onto the board at once. There’s no easy answer for that. Expect to win with a concede or watch your opponent succumb to fatigue.
Some words of advice for dealing with aggro decks on ladder:
- 1. You have so much control packed into this deck that you should be more than capable of keeping them in check in the early game.
- 2. Although you can take things slowly, once they see you’re a control deck they may decide to play more aggressively, so don’t get too laid back and leave yourself open to surprise lethal.
- 3. Cornered Sentry is excellent at stalling aggro in the early game. If you can follow it up with a Blood Razer then the card loses all of its disadvantages too.
- The standout anti-aggro card from The Boomsday Project is Giggling Inventor and it’s in Control Warrior as another bothersome blockade for the opponent to deal with.
- Weapons Project is a slightly more dangerous play against aggro as they may just send that weapon damage to your life total – use with caution!
These tips will help in matches against fellow control opponents:
- 1. There will probably be a few boring turns in the early game as you both make slow starts. This is fine as it gives you space to build up Armor or draw cards.
- 2. Weapons Project can work extremely well in these matches as a way of destroying your opponent’s preferred weapon and also giving you something to draw from using Harrison Jones.
- 3. Even though you’re both control decks, this Control Warrior list has a much better chance of surviving fatigue.
- 4. You can generate a lot of extra value way into the late game with Dead Man’s Hand, Dr. Boom, Mad Genius and Geosculptor Yip.
- 5. Grommash Hellscream works well as some surprise lethal damage to catch control decks off guard, most notably when paired with Warpath or Blood Razer.
Control Warrior Mulligan guide
For the best start with Control Warrior these are the cards you’ll want to aim for in the Mulligan phase:
- 1. Acolyte of Pain: Card draw is very useful for Control Warrior in the early game so this does the job perfectly.
- 2. Blood Razer: Can be used to take out weaker early minions, while the two effects synergize well with Acolyte of Pain and Execute.
- 3. Weapons Project: The card benefits both players but you’ll get a lot more from the weapon and Armor compared to the majority of your opponents.
- 4. Cornered Sentry: Offers good stats for slowing down faster decks, even though you give them some 1/1 Raptors to chip away at it.
- 5. Drywhisker Armorer: Decent two drop that’ll give you some extra Armor to stave off early aggression and protect your health.
Control Warrior tips, combos and synergies
There are some important combos to juggle when you're playing Control Warrior, and this Boomsday version of the classic archetype adds a new twist or two. Here's a breakdown of all the most important synergies you have at your disposal.
- If you can hold back on playing Omega Assembly until you have ten Mana, you'll receive all three Mechs that were selected as part of the Discovery process.
- Shield Slam becomes more powerful for each point of Armor you have at the time its cast. Your pre-transformation hero power can of course be used to boost this up, but don't forget cards like Shield Block and the indirect gains of Armorsmith here either.
- Play Drywhisker Armorer and you'll receive two points of Armor for each enemy minion that's out on the board at the time.
- If an enemy minion has received even the most minor of wounds, you can use Execute to take it out of play. Cards that empower this removal effect in this deck are: Shield Slam, Warpath, Blood Razor and any of your actively inflicted weapon damage.
- Those damage effects can also be used to trigger the card draw effect of Acolyte of Pain.
- Combo-ing Weapons Project with Harrison Jones can be both extremely satisfying and also profitable for the extra card draw that's triggered by Harrison!
- Scourgelord Garrosh provides you with a 4 / 3 weapon that also damages minions adjacent to the one you actively target. You also gain a new hero power which does one point of damage to everything (see the interactions above).
- We've detailed a number of way of inflicting damage in this section, and if you can trigger any of them while Grommash Hellscream is on the board you'll be able to slam ten points of damage into a target immediately!
- When you press the End Turn button, your active Geosculptor Yip will summon a random minion with a cost equal to that of your current Armor value.
- Dr. Boom, Mad Genius grants Rush to all the subsequently played Mech minions. That means they can attack enemy minions immediately. You also gain five new Hero Powers which are selected at random each turn:
- Blast Shield
- Delivery Drone
- Zap Cannon
- At the end of every turn that he survives on the board, The Lich King will reward you with a randomly selected Death Knight card. Here are the options that you can potentially draw into via this minion:
|2||Death Coil||Deal 5 damage to an enemy, or restore 5 Health to a friendly character.|
|2||Death Grip||Steal a minion from your opponent's deck and add it to your hand.|
|2||Obliterate||Destroy a minion. Your hero takes damage equal to its Health.|
|3||Death and Decay||Deal 3 damage to all enemies.|
|4||Anti-Magic Shell||Give your minions +2 / +2 and “Can't be targeted by spells or Hero Powers.”|
|5||Doom Pact||Destroy all minions. Remove the top card from your deck for each minion destroyed.|
|6||Army of the Dead||Remove the top 5 cards of your deck. Summony any minions removed.|
|7||Frostmourne||Deathrattle: Summon every minion killed by this [5 / 3] weapon.|
Card choices and substitutions
Due to all of the late game Legendary cards, Control Warrior is a very expensive deck and best suited to someone with a relatively healthy card library. Some swaps are possible but these cards are absolutely vital:
- Omega Assembly: Never cast this until you have ten Mana as it’s necessary to grab all three minions for some immense late game value.
- Shield Slam: You’ll be building up a lot of Armor in the course of a game, so Shield Slam will be able to take out most minions.
- Dead Man’s Hand: An excellent way to refill your deck with more resources and outlast many other control-oriented decks.
- Brawl: Classic removal option, as strong today as it was at Hearthstone’s release. Reckless Flurry can also be used as a replacement.
- Giggling Inventor: Shuts down aggro immediately and can even be a pain for control decks to get past with all their big minions.
- Harrison Jones: Weapon removal that can also draw you some cards. Makes a strong pairing with Weapons Project.
- Dr. Boom, Mad Genius: Yet another way to keep you in the match as you go through the late game. The rotating hero power can deal damage, generate you more minions and so much more.
- Geosculptor Yip: Take full advantage of all that bonus Armor you’re generating by summoning a few bonus minions.
- Scourgelord Garrosh: Shadowmourne is a terrific weapon to clear your opponent’s side of the board with, while the hero power can work well with Acolyte of Pain and Grommash Hellscream.
- The Lich King: An imposing 8/8 body for eight Mana, plus you can stock up on some very useful Death Knight cards too!
- The Boomship: This can summon some serious power onto the board for just nine Mana. Minions brought onto the battlefield have rush too, allowing you to immediately clean up whatever sits on your opponent’s side.