The concept of the Tempo Mage has undergone a number of revisions in 2015, but the most popular flavour by far right now goes by the name of Firestorm, and was created by and evolved by a couple of members over at the Hearthpwn community site.
If you're looking to get to grips with this most recent evolution of the deck archetype, here's our quick guide to getting started.
Firestorm Mage strategy guide
This is a tempo deck at heart, which means you get on the board nice and early on, and then grow your minions with an assortment of cards which both enhance their power, and slow down the opponent's board development.
In the early game, you have cards like Mana Wyrm, Mad Scientist and Flamewaker which all allow you to assume a board presence and then frustrate your opponent in one way or another. In the mid-game, you have extremely sticky minions like Water Elemental, Piloted Shredder and Sludge Belcher. For a fat finisher, Dr. Boom can be used to put an intimidating presence down on the board.
As for removal, some - like the Flamewaker's pings - are RNG-based, while others such as Flamestrike and Polymorph can be used to solve a whole host of problems. Choose your moments for these spells well, and you should always have a way to get back into a bad game. Don't get greedy either, make sure you use your tools efficiently, and don't waste a big removal if you have a more elegant method at your disposal.
Firestorm Mage Mulligan guide
Both of your Mana Wyrms are absolutely golden to hang onto - particularly if you have The Coin - as are your Mad Scientists. The Secret-pulling power of those guys can't be overestimated. Hang onto a Frostbolt for pure removal and Wyrm-boosting potential, as well as a single Kirin Tor Mage, as you're fit to burst with Secrets in this deck.
If you're playing in a mirror match-up, or you want to slow a Hunter down badly, consider keeping hold of your Kezan Mystic as well, although these are the only two classes you'd consider doing so with. On the subject of Secrets - throw 'em all back at the Mulligan stage! You never want to spend Mana putting these spells into play if you can possibly avoid it.
Firestorm Mage card combos and synergies
Make sure you're fully up to speed with all of the clever card combos at your disposal. The more efficiently you can play this deck, the better your win-rate will become, so make sure you get to grips with the following plays:
- Mad Scientists are great for bringing Secrets into play for free, as is the Kirin Tor Mage. You should always use these characters to get the job done, as the tempo gain is huge and delicious!
- Any spell, whether it's The Coin, a Secret, or Unstable Portal can be used to boost up your Mana Wyrms. Using Frostbolt to nuke a minion while boosting your own minion(s) up is a particularly powerful opening play.
- Likewise, the pinging effect of Flamewaker is triggered by every kind of spell in your arsenal, but the damage it spits out is randomly targeted.
- Don't forget that your Fireballs can be given a little extra reach with Azure Drake. Just don't count on the latter living long enough to provide the boost if you play them out on separate turns.
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