Our Secret Tempo Mage deck list guide features the best deck list for The Witchwood (July 2018). Our Secret Tempo Mage guide also contains Mulligan advice, card combos and strategy tips.
Secret Tempo Mage is a Hearthstone deck that's absolutely stuffed to the brim with Secrets and spells, and it's the type of deck that will leave the other player constantly fighting to keep up. All the way throughout each match they'll have to do their best to try and read the possible pitfalls that might lie ahead of them, and respond to your fiendish collection of Secrets as best they can - or can't, as will often turn out to be the case.
While they're trying to read the board state, you'll be working to snowball your own side of the board with an increasingly deadly fighting force of your own. How exactly you play this process out depends very much on how those Secrets influence the board state, and the difficulties the opponent forces you to deal with too.
In our Secret Tempo Mage guide, we've got the latest and greatest Witchwood deck list for you to use, along with some general strategy advice and tips for completing the Mulligan stage correctly. To wrap things up we've also covered all of the combos you can utilise using this exact version of the archetype. Making all of the plays second nature is absolutely vital for travelling the uncertain path each game is going to present you with!
UPDATE - JULY 2018 #1
Although it's not quite a Tier 1 deck in the current meta, Secret - or Tempo - Mage is still a very strong way of climbing the ladder this month. This one's stabilised pretty quickly over the last month or so, but we'll nevertheless keep an eye on the deck list throughout July.
Secret Tempo Mage deck list and strategy
Here's the most popular version of Secret Tempo Mage that's being played in the current Witchwood meta. We will as always update our recommendation over time!
|2 x Arcane Missiles||2 x Amani Berserker|
|2 x Mana Wyrm||2 x Lifedrinker|
|2 x Arcanologist|
|2 x Frostbolt|
|2 x Primordial Glyph|
|2 x Sorcerer's Apprentice|
|2 x Arcane Intellect|
|2 x Cinderstorm|
|2 x Counterspell|
|2 x Explosive Runes|
|2 x Kirin Tor Mage|
|2 x Fireball|
|1 x Aluneth|
|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: AAECAf0EAr8IotMCDnG7ApUDqwS0BOYElgXsBZYGwcECmMQCj9MC++wC7/ECAA==
More great Mage guides:
With an powerful opening curve that can snowball out of control and a whole tome of efficient spells, Secret Tempo Mage is designed to scupper an opponent’s plans while building to an explosive finish with the likes of Fireball and Pyroblast.
Here’s how that plays out at each stage of a match.
Early game: Starting with a Mana Wyrm is your ideal opener and most players will hurry to find a way to deal with it before it can escalate too much in power. Primordial Glyph and Arcane Intellect are all worth playing to buff up your magic-loving creature.
Meanwhile, you’ll want to respond to all of your opponent’s minions with damage spells such as Frostbolt and Arcane Missiles to keep them on the backfoot, and prevent them assembling a board. Anticipate their plays with your Secrets too, dropping Counterspell if it makes sense for them to play a spell next turn, or Explosive Runes if you predict a minion. Remember, Kirin Tor Mage makes your next Secret free for a big tempo play on three Mana.
Mid game: Press your advantage further into the mid game by removing your opponent’s bigger creatures using Fireball. Work towards bringing their life total down to that threatening region of 7-12 health, from which point your burst can quickly finish them off.
Late game: If your competitor’s health is floating around 10, you’re holding Pyroblast in hand and can survive for a couple more turns, then do what needs to be done to hold out until you can unleash the Mage’s biggest spell.
A few tips and tricks for handling aggro opponents:
- Your Fireblast hero power can be useful for pinging down weak enemy minions and saving your other resources.
- This deck lacks the usual array of Mage board clears like Flamestrike so use your removal on minions frequently. You may get lucky and receive one off of a Primordial Glyph though!
- This deck has a lot of finishing power into the late game, so consider playing like a control deck in the early stages and switching gears to be more aggressive when you have the advantage.
- Now that Ice Block has entered the Hall of Fame you’ve lost a lot of your potential to stall in the late game, so you may be forced into a race more often.
- If your opponent relies a lot on weapons, it’s not completely crazy to consider sending a Frostbolt to their face to prevent them from attacking for a turn.
Some pointers to keep in mind when you come up against control decks:
- Consider whether it’s best to clear enemy creatures using your own minions or spells. Minions might stick around longer if you go for the spell, but a Fireball in hand to use as burn can also be very useful.
- Counterspell is great at disrupting the plans of slower control decks. If you put them off their stride early on, they’ll be forced to spend too much time trying to catch up again.
- Aluneth is vital for refilling your hand with resources against slower opponents. If it looks like you’re about to run out of steam in the mid game, this burst of card draw can get you going again.
- If you’re approach a big board clear turn, get as much damage in from your minions as you can before they’re potentially wiped off the board.
- Sometimes it’s better to take a turn or two to set up a chunk of burst damage your opponent isn’t expecting and wipe them out in one fell swoop.
Secret Tempo Mage Mulligan guide
Tempo Mage can curve out quickly and snowball fast with these cards in your opening hand:
- 1. Mana Wyrm: If played on turn one it’s almost guaranteed to be a 2/3 by Turn 2, or even stronger if you have the Coin.
- 2. Arcanologist: A solid minion that also thins out your deck by putting a Secret into your hand ready to play next turn.
- 3. Amani Berseker: Another solid two drop that can be pinged with your own hero power if you need to deal with a problem on the board.
- 4. Kirin Tor Mage: An excellent tempo play when paired with a Secret early in the game.
- 5. Sorcerer’s Apprentice: Can be played as is for an acceptable two-Mana 3/2 while also offering a discount on over half the cards in the deck.
Secret Tempo Mage tips, combos and synergies
There are quite a lot of combos to juggle with any kind of Tempo Mage, and the latest Witchwood version is certainly no exception.
Here's what you need to be thinking about when playing this deck out:
- Every time a spell is played your active Mana Wyrm will gain an extra point of Attack power. Something to always keep in mind as you're planning out your turn, especially if this combo starts happening later on in the match than you might have liked.
- Arcanologist will choose a remaining random Secret from your deck and put it in your hand when played.
- You get to play a Secret for free after putting Kirin Tor Mage onto the board. Keep that in mind when planning out your potential Mana options on any given turn.
- Not only will Primordial Glyph allow you to Discover a new spell, the cost of that spell will be reduced by two Mana when it's in your hand.
- As long as Sorcerer's Apprentice is on the board, all of your spells will cost one Mana less. This effect stacks with multiple copies of this minion.
- If the opponent plays a minion with six or less Health then it will be destroyed automatically by your active Explosive Runes. If that minion has less than six Health, any excess damage is applied to the opponent's Health pool.
- Aluneth will give you three extra cards at the end of each of your turns. Watch the size of your hand so you don't end up burning any crucial cards! As a tempo orientated player though, you should be emptying your hand pretty rapidly.
Secret Tempo Mage card choices and substitutions
Here’s an overview of some of the key cards for Secret Tempo Mage, and a few optional replacements should you be short on dust:
- Mana Wyrm: A strong early game minion that synergises with all the spells in your deck to become a powerful threat.
- Arcanologist: Draws you a Secret that’s ready to be played on Turn 3, and does a really good job at contesting the board in the early game.
- Primordial Glyph: It’s strange how the random spell from this card turns out to be more helpful than not the majority of the time. If you’re looking for a cheaper option then Lesser Ruby Spellstone is an OK replacement.
- Counterspell: Great at messing with an opponent’s plans and sometimes just the threat of a Secret can psyche your opponent into making an inferior play.
- Kirin Tor Mage: This essentially allows you to play six Mana-worth of cards for just three Mana. Will always be advantageous if you combine it with a Secret.
- Aluneth: The card draw is important if you find yourself running out of resources in longer games. With two copies of Arcane Intellect in the deck already, though, there aren’t any similar replacements.
- Pyroblast: Offers a big finish but certainly isn’t a necessary part of the deck if it’s not in your collection. Nevertheless, it’s recommended you have either this or Archmage Antonidas.