It is that time of the year again when it's time to take to ladder with our theorycrafts! Madness at the Darkmoon Faire brought along many tools to make new archetypes work, but also plenty of support for some the older archetypes that just never saw the light of day. We might not know exactly what the meta will shape up to be, the joys of day 1 is that any deck can be viable.

Without further ado, here are some of the decks that we are most excited to play during the first day of Darkmoon Faire!


Echo's Day 1 Decks

The main goal of this deck is to try incorporating some of the new elemental cards into the current build of Tempo Mage and see if they have a home there. Tempo Mage is already running quite a few elementals, but with Confection Cyclone added to the mix, Elemental Allies suddenly went from a fairly unreliable source of card draw into an almost guaranteed 1 mana draw three, which is fairly crazy.

The deck's main win conditions are through just generating enough cards to beat out other decks, cheating out Mana GiantsBADCARDNAME early on and stealing the game with them, as well as Grand Finale, which can often flood the board with 8/8s and force the opponent to have some board clear.

One of the big themes this expansion for Shaman is themed around attacking with the hero constantly, and I feel like there's a decent amount of cards to make a decent deck. As one might expect, this deck has a heavy reliance on weapons, which Shaman has access to a decent amount to. Whack-A-Gnoll Hammer works great as a follow up to either the hero power or Cagematch Custodian, as well as the deck consisting of many other smaller synergies to work with each other.

The biggest of these smaller synergies comes with the Revolve and Boggspine Knuckles. Being able to turn for drop 3 random 3 drops with Desert Hare, or turn 5 play a 4/2 weapon and a random 5 drop with Dread Corsair are both very decent plays and can lead to a lot of swing turns.

One of my favorite old standard decks was Spell Hunter. Throughout all of Kobolds and Catacomb's reveal period, it was mocked relentlessly because there's no way Hunter, a class known for playing minions and sending them face, could play only spells, right? Turns out the deck actually had legs to stand on, and while not a tier 1 deck, it was significantly more competitive than most thought it would be. This deck is like a callback to it, using predominantly secrets in the early game to prohibit the opponents from getting a lead early on. If they do not trigger them immediately, we can get a lot of value out of Petting Zoo, using it to either reclaim the board or push some face damage.

As for our payoffs of having no early game minions, we get the ability to run Maxina BlastenheimerBADCARDNAME and a variety of other beefy minions to launch at our opponents face. These minions are Oblivitron, Darkmoon Tonk, and Scrapyard Colossus. Both Oblivtron and Scrapyard Colossus leave a large body on the field, while Tonk just has the ability to hit the opponent for a truckload.


ShadowOfSense's Il'gynoth OTK-ish Demon Hunter

Alright, this combo is pretty straightforward. It doesn't quite do a full 30 damage without some shenanigans, but as a Demon Hunter you should be trying to chip the opponent down into range anyway.

The idea is to use our new friend Il'gynoth to turn the innocent Aldrachi Warblades into horrifying knives of death. We start by playing Aldrachi Warblades on a prior turn (I know, I know, that's why it's OTK-ish). This is to give us as much mana as possible to pile damage onto them. On a following turn, simply play Il'gynoth and start piling damage onto your weapon. With 6 mana remaining, double Twin Slice and a Chaos Strike gives you a 12 Attack weapon, which can hit face for a total of 24 damage. If you manage to copy a Twin Slice with Zai, the Incredible, you can up this to 14/28 damage.


Avalon's Menagerie Highlander Druid

It appears that, outside of Rogue, the only ways you have to get multiple N'Zoth, God of the Deep are Expired Merchant, Barista Lynchen and... Elise the Enlightened.

The goal is ramping mana in the early game while trying to contain your aggressive opponents and then slam a threat on the board each turn. While Breath of Dreams doesn't have many activators, it's still a 2 mana draw a card and, in the end, Overgrowth is what you'll mulligan for. Imprisoned Satyr is always a must keep, since it could allow game winning swings if you land the discount of the right targets. Use Elise as either a value generator for the control matchups or a survival tool against those pesky Hunters and Demon Hunters.

If everything's going downhill, just let Yogg-Saron, Master of Fate take the wheel and see what happen. What could go wrong?

The deck is slow, heavy, probably loses against aggro and can't deal with the board once you're behind, but greed is good, so... happy 35% winrate y'all!


Flux's Dudeadin

Created this deck right after opening all my packs for the expansion. The idea is simple, you have a bunch of dudes and they want to kill stuff. I can't say how good this is going to be since my sample size is quite low (5 games, 3-2) but the different combos in the deck are fun so far.

Carnival Barker Card Image Day at the Faire Card Image Balloon Merchant Card Image Lothraxion the Redeemed Card Image

We've got four key cards from the expansion that we're utilizing to assemble this dream team. 

  • Carnival Barker buffs every small minion in our deck with the exception of Knife Juggler.
  • Day at the Faire can be difficult to corrupt early-on due to only a quarter of our deck being higher-cost cards, but is essential to the gameplan (spam buffed dudes).
  • Balloon Merchant was an excellent addition. We can drop this later on to let our buffed dudes play control without losing any tempo.
  • Lothraxion the Redeemed is perfection. He isn't strictly required to have a good time, I've only played him in 1 out of 5 games, but the dream is powerful and gives you insane value.

I really enjoy the Sword of Justice combo alongside Righetous CauseBADCARDNAME and a corrupted Day at the Faire. Playing this after a Lothraxion drop is pure bliss. Additionally, Blessing of Authority is nice to force removal or panic in your opponent. You can use it to take out larger taunt minions that Warriors love, opening up the flood gates for your dudes. 

I'm not entirely certain on my inclusion of Darkmoon Statue. The card did push one of my games over the edge and in another, I was able to buff it hard with Blessing of Authority which would have been fatal if not for Execute, but this might be too slow and its really tough to pull off the Corruption effect.

I don't know if Dudeadin is going to be strong enough to be a meta contender, but I'm hopeful that we'll see some additional support next year, or maybe even in the 35-card mini-set we get during the Darkmoon Faire cycle so really let this flourish in Standard. Ultimately though, I do think finding a list for Wild is going to net more overall fun.