At the end of last week, we showed you how to get the most out of the Ramp Druid deck SilentStorm used as part of their winning strategy at the ESL Finals. Today, we're taking a look at the second of the three decks used to take home victory, and we'll show you how to play it to its fullest potential.
SilentStorm's ESL Shaman strategy guide
This is a control-orientated deck, so the most important thing is to lock down your opponent's early game, leaving you in a position to launch into a series of devastating end-game options. Al'Akir the Windlord can be boosted to insane heights with many of the damage boosting tools in your arsenal (Flametongue Totem, Rockbiter Weapon etc), or you can fall back on the Murloc-summoning mischievousness of Neptulon. Once these creatures are out in play, you can similarly boost them up to create an intimidating threat.
SilentStorm's ESL Shaman Mulligan guide
Cards like Haunted Creeper, Wild Pyromancer, Feral Spirit and Harvest Golem are all great options to have in your backpocket. Otherwise, any removal or silencing spells that show up will do much to take the sting out of your opponent's opening gambit. If you've got a very strong opening curve - as well as The Coin – then you might be tempted to hold onto Piloted Shredder too. These occasions will likely be rare though.
SilentStorm's ESL Shaman card combos
- The most common Hearthstone decks feature two of each card to ensure a certain degree of reliability in the draw, but SilentStorm's Shaman deck often features just one of each kind. For that reason, there are quite a few more card combos to consider than you might be used to. Here's a closer look at each one.
- Your Azure Drakes can be used to boost all of the spells in this deck: Lightning Storm, Earth Shock, Lightning Bolt and Crackle. It can be tough in the mid-game to keep your drake(s) alive long enough to give the extra spell-damage benefit, but there are some fun single-turn combos to consider in the later stages of a match. These card draw effect of these deadly dragons is always welcome.
- Wild Pyromancer can be used in combination with any of the spells in your deck to dish out a point of damage to every minion on the board (including your own). This can be hugely beneficial in the early game when it comes to controlling your opponent's side of the board.
- Doomhammer and Rockbiter Weapon allow you to dish out ten points of pain on a single turn, although note that the Rockbiter effect wears off after the turn ends.
- Your Flametongue Totems work wonderfully with spells like Feral Spirit, but watch your positioning of this damage-boosting totem, so you get the most benefit from it. This is particularly important when you're trading off minions, and need to cycle through your own fighting forces.
- Here's the big one. Al'Akir the Windlord, combined with Rockbiter Weapon and nestled next to a Flametongue Totem, can wreck your opponent for a whopping sixteen points of damage.