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Freeze Mage deck list guide - Rise of Shadows - Hearthstone (June 2019)

Our guide to climbing the ladder using Freeze Mage in Rise of Shadows.

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About John Bedford

John is Metabomb's Editor in Chief, and is responsible for all of the Hearthstone news, features and guides content on the site.

Our Freeze Mage deck list guide features the best deck list for Season 62 of Rise of Shadows (May 2019). Our Freeze Mage guide also contains Mulligan advice, card combos and strategy tips.

Freeze Mage is a Hearthstone deck that has played an important part in the meta all the way back to the very earliest days of the game's beta period. Over the years, though, the list has lost more and more of its most powerful and effective cards to the point where it is a shadow of its former self. Still, for those who love playing it, they’re doing all they can to get over the loss of Ice Block and Ice Lance.

Even though it looks very different compared to its original incarnation, the way it’s played is still very much the same as it has always been. It’s a fiddly deck if you haven’t played anything similar before, but it can be very rewarding once you’ve acclimatised to the levels of patience required to pilot this deck effectively. You need a little bit of nerve to ride things into the long game as well, where your strengths lie in abundance.

To help you on that journey we have a Freeze Mage guide for you. We begin with the version of the archetype that’s sending chills down the spines of its opponents in the fresh Rise of Shadows meta. Further down the page you’ll find some strategy advice that’ll help you pilot the deck most effectively, some top tips for the Mulligan phase, and a breakdown of all the important card combos in Freeze Mage.

UPDATE - JUNE 2019 #1

Freeze Mage is starting to see a little extra play in the post Rise of the Mechs meta, but it's still not quite yet a top-tier deck. For that reason we've dropped a new deck list into the top of this article, but won't fully convert the guide until it's proved itself.

MageNeutral
2 x Ray of Frost2 x Doomsayer
2 x Frostbolt2 x Novice Engineer
2 x Conjurer's Calling2 x Acolyte of Pain
2 x Frost Nova1 x Zilliax
2 x Arcane Intellect1 x Jepetto Joybuzz
2 x Fireball1 x Alexstrasza
1 x Luna's Pocket Galaxy2 x Mountain Giant
2 x Blizzard
2 x Astromancer
1 x Archmage Antonidas
1 x Kalecgos

Select and copy the long ID string below, then create a deck in Hearthstone to export this deck into your game.

Deck Import ID:

This article contains additional reporting by James Pickard.

Freeze Mage deck list and strategy

Although not a very strong archetype right now, this is the best deck list for Freeze Mage that we're aware of in Rise of Shadows.

MageNeutral
2 x Ray of Frost1 x Acidic Swamp Ooze
2 x Frostbolt2 x Doomsayer
2 x Arcane Intellect1 x Acolyte of Pain
2 x Frost Nova2 x Rotten Applebaum
2 x Arcane Keysmith2 x Sunreaver Warmage
2 x Fireball1 x Zilliax
2 x Blizzard1 x Alexstrasza
1 x Archmage Antonidas
1 x Flamestrike
2 x Power of Creation
1 x Kalecgos
1 x Pyroblast

Select and copy the long ID string below, then create a deck in Hearthstone to export this deck into your game.

Deck Import ID: AAECAf0ECMUEigfsB7gIvwj7DKCAA4qeAwuKAbsCyQOrBMsElgW+7ALF8wLTmAOfmwOgmwMA

More great Mage guides:

General strategy

As a Freeze Mage your game plan revolves around stalling your opponent's board development with big board clears, while at the same time using your card-drawing skills and minions to fatten up your hand with your core win conditions. Combos like Frost Nova/Blizzard and Doomsayer allow you to - typically - wipe whatever's out on the board, and frustrate the opponent's progress.

As for the win conditions we've mentioned, your goal is to reach the big burst damage spells littered throughout the deck. If you stall your opponent for long enough you’ll be able to reach a position where you can cut their Health down to size and then finish up with some big damage to wipe them out for good.

Early game: Do everything you can to stall your opponent. Drop Doomsayer on Turn 2 to wipe out their board, or you can even do it on an empty board to stop them developing during their next turn. Alongside that you’ll want to draw more cards into your hand using Acolyte of Pain and Arcane Intellect.

Mid game: Continue stalling your opponent at every opportunity available. Blizzard is a perfect card to wipe out all of your opponent’s creatures, or if the damage isn’t enough the Freeze effect should be enough to cause a considerable delay to their game plan. Of course, if you want pure damage, you have Flamestrike for that. Sunreaver Warmage offers some strong single target removal, while you can find some handy healing from Lifedrinker if needed.

Late game: Now you can look to become the aggressor in the match. Throw down an Alexstrasza and you should lop off enough of your opponent’s Health to put them in a dangerous position for the next turn or two. You can sometimes finish them off without the great dragon if they’ve already been injured somewhat already thanks to Pyroblast. Meanwhile, Power of Creation is a good way to make a big impact play. Likewise, Kalecgos: not only is it a chunky minion but it’ll also give you a free spell cast at the start of each turn. That makes something like a Pyroblast and double Fireball combo viable for a ridiculous burst finish.

Aggro opponents

Here are some important tips to help you best aggro decks:

  • 1. You should be able to irritate aggro players so much with all the ways you have to stall them right from Turn 1.
  • 2. Throwing down a Doomsayer onto an empty board is even wiser against aggro as if you can stop them ever establishing a board you’ll be in great shape.
  • 3. If you’re approaching the late game where your burst comes into play just think about using Freeze effects to stall their minions while you push for face damage over the top.
  • 4. If you need to hit a big emergency button you have Flamestrike on Turn 7 that should obliterate the board completely.

Control opponents

These tips will ensure you find a win against other control decks:

  • 1. Instead of removing minions, try to take full advantage of your Freeze effects to stop the big minions from control decks doing serious damage.
  • 2. Alexstrasza can do a lot of work removing a huge chunk of Health from your opponent, but be aware she will have zero effect on their Armor value.
  • 3. Take your time in the early game to focus on card draw. You can even ping your own Acolyte of Pain to get more value from it.
  • 4. Save Acidic Swamp Ooze until your foe gets their best weapon equipped. Many control decks are built around powerful arms so removing it immediately can be a huge momentum swing in your favour.

Freeze Mage Mulligan guide

It would be very cool if you found these cards in your opening hand:

  • 1. Doomsayer: A huge minion that will completely stall your opponent in the early turns.
  • 2. Acolyte of Pain: A way for you to draw through your deck and gather more cards in the early game.
  • 3. Frost Nova: A way to hold off the entirety of your opponent’s board for a single turn and frustrate the hell out of them.
  • 4. Frostbolt: Works well as removal in the early turns but can also be used to just Freeze a creature in place for a single turn.

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Freeze Mage tips, combos and synergies

There's lots to think about at every stage of every match with the Freeze Mage. Here are some of the most important combos to keep in mind as each game plays out:

- You won’t begrudge using Ray of Frost to just Freeze a minion, but also look for ways to take the opportunity to use it for damage against already Frozen creatures to take them out.

- Doomsayer can be used with your freeze effects (Frost Nova / Blizzard) to set up a nice board clear, but keep in mind that the wipe is not guaranteed. If your opponent can Silence or assassinate this character, the effect won't trigger!

- When Acolyte of Pain takes damage it’ll draw one card from your deck. Try to sneak some extra value out of it by trading into low attack minions or pinging it with your hero power.

- Use Arcane Keysmith as a way to confuse or befuddle your opponent. If you put a random secret into the battlefield they may be forced to make a nonoptimal play in order to avoid triggering it.

- With all the expensive spells in the deck you should have no problem activate the big damage effect on Sunreaver Warmage.

- Using Alexstrasza can set up your opponent for a very quick kill as it’ll drop their Health down to just 15. Follow that up with some minion damage and a Pyroblast and your opponent will be ash in an instant.

- There are lots of expensive spells in this deck, which makes Kalecgos a very handy play. Imagine getting that on the board and then being able to play a Pyroblast for free at the start of the next turn!

Freeze Mage card choices and substitutions

Even though it’s lost a lot of key pieces, there are still a number of cards vital to making Freeze Mage work. We’ve listed them for you below:

  • Ray of Frost: We miss Ice Lance but this will have to do as a replacement to Freeze a minion or deal damage to already Frozen targets.
  • Doomsayer: A huge way to stop your opponent from developing a board or wipe out the board they’ve established so far.
  • Frostbolt: A decent removal spell that can also be used exclusively for its Freeze effect against larger targets.
  • Frost Nova: The lack of damage isn’t a big loss if you just use this to stop a huge wave of damage coming in while you prepare your burst.
  • Fireball: Staple damage spell of the Mage class since Hearthstone day one. Useful for removing minions or for going for your opponent’s life total directly.
  • Zilliax: This well-rounded Mech creeps into another deck once again for its multiple uses and handy keywords..
  • Blizzard: Perfect for wiping out or locking down a wide board so you can push through some damage instead.
  • Flamestrike: Huge area of effect board removal that should kill off most minions or put them low enough for you to tidy up later.
  • Power of Creation: Can summon a pair of tough minions so you have a way to contest the board.
  • Alexstrasza: Lops off a massive chunk of your opponent’s Health, which makes it much easier for you to finish off the match with your burst damage.
  • Kalecgos: A minion that’s very hard to deal with and also comes with a huge effect for the start of each turn so you can get massive value out of your most expensive spells.
  • Pyroblast: A great big whopping blast of damage that should see off most of your opponents once you have them low enough.

Comment on this article

  • braindrops #1 A year ago
    I love your site as well! Fyi - when you use your deck import id doomed apprentice is imported instead of sorcerer's apprentice per your list above.
    Sign in to reply
  • Bedders #2 A year ago
    @franciscalvendra I've just realised that because I'm a big dummy I forgot to copy the old deck list first. Sorry! I don't think it's a huge problem in this instance though because Freeze Mage is not getting a lot of love right now. Still, I would have liked to preserve it.
    Sign in to reply
  • franciscalvendra #3 A year ago
    That would be awesome! Thanks for the quick response. Looking forward to the updates
    Sign in to reply
  • Bedders #4 A year ago
    @franciscalvednra Also, thanks for the kind words! It means a lot during these very....intense times :-)
    Sign in to reply
  • Bedders #5 A year ago
    @franciscalvendra That's fair and noted. I used to drop the previous version of the deck list into the comments after an update - would that do the trick?
    Sign in to reply
  • franciscalvendra #6 A year ago
    I love your articles and i check this site almost everyday. May i suggest though that when you update an article, can you please annotate what you remove when you add some new cards onto the deck? That would be very helpful. Keep up the great work.
    Sign in to reply
  • Bedders #7 2 years ago
    Hello folks. It seems as though Freeze Mage may still be a thing despite the Ice Lance farewell. This one's on the list for an update but it might be a few days until you see it. Apologies! I'm trying to cover a lot of ground right now.
    Sign in to reply
  • feñaibarra01 #8 2 years ago
    hi guys!
    idk if you made a mistake or not, but this "tempo build" is just the same as the "freeze mage" upper this one.
    I would be happy if you put one tempo build :D
    Anyway thanks, this web is awesome
    Sign in to reply
  • Bedders #9 2 years ago
    @Draggykins95 Sorry, I missed this completely! I can't remember the last time I saw Anomolus on the ladder, let alone in a deck I was playing so I guess you can?

    Obviously there's the huge caveat that no one knows what tomorrow's metagame looks like and you dust at your own discretion.
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  • Draggykins95 #10 2 years ago
    Hello, I've been looking forward to craft this deck for a while now.

    Atm I am sitting on 2900 dust with an Anomolus that I don't use at all.

    Would it be worth to disenchant the Anomolus to get Alex and Thalnos?
    Sign in to reply
  • Bedders #11 2 years ago
    @Klck Cheers for that. I have a bit of a backlog of decks to catch up on at the moment but I'm going to play around with this tonight. I can't guarantee I'll be able to do a full write-up but I'll definitely enjoying messing around with this :-)
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  • Klck #12 2 years ago
    Hey John i mentioned barnes powerhouse mage deck like a week ago. I had an unexpected travel but now im back. I was talking about tempo mage but i found him even better in control renomage. There are plenty of great targets: ragnaros, sylvana, thaurisan, antonidas, thalnos, flamewaker, some good targets: sorcerer apprentice, mana wyrm, loot hoarder, acolyte of pain. Two bad targets: azure drake (still magic+1), yogg saron (i dont use him) and one terrible target in form of reno jackson (my version is faking tempo until reno hit the table).
    Sign in to reply
  • davidjacobs36 #13 3 years ago
    this is been freeze since....freeze
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  • dhashvindeva03 #14 3 years ago
  • nicholberry #15 3 years ago
    No Alexstraza :-( Ideas?
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