Hey y’all! My name is anonymous719 – you may remember me from my past two guides on Control Warrior. If you can’t tell yet, Control Warrior is my favorite archetype, and I have been trying to make it work in the new Forged in the Barrens meta. Admittedly, Control Warrior sucked in the beginning of the expansion (to put it nicely). With the heavy presence of Lunacy Mage and Paladin, it was extremely hard to create a viable Warrior deck. Furthermore, I felt really disinclined to build a viable deck, as the removal of Skipper/Armorsmith/Bloodsworn Mercenary, which have been paramount to Warrior’s success for the longest time, no longer exists in Standard. However, I began to realize that the new Core Set provided new tools for this archetype. Post-nerf, I think this deck has genuine potential to be a strong off-meta deck, which I will explain later below.
### Forged Control Warrior
# Class: Warrior
# Format: Standard
# Year of the Gryphon
# 2x (1) Armor Vendor
# 2x (1) Shield Slam
# 1x (1) Stage Dive
# 2x (1) Sword and Board
# 1x (2) Acidic Swamp Ooze
# 2x (2) Corsair Cache
# 2x (2) Minefield
# 2x (3) Bladestorm
# 1x (3) Bulwark of Azzinoth
# 1x (3) Lord Barov
# 1x (3) Teron Gorefiend
# 2x (3) Venomous Scorpid
# 1x (4) Kargath Bladefist
# 2x (4) Outrider’s Axe
# 1x (4) Rancor
# 2x (5) Brawl
# 2x (5) Faceless Manipulator
# 1x (5) Taelan Fordring
# 1x (9) Rattlegore
# 1x (10) C’Thun, the Shattered
# To use this deck, copy it to your clipboard and create a new deck in Hearthstone
How this deck works
The general gameplan of this deck is akin to any past Control Warrior decks – to outvalue and outlast other decks with efficient removal until you stabilize to your win condition. Minefield and Sword and Board help deal with early threats. Acidic Swamp Ooze helps slow down the gameplan of decks like Poison Rogue, Secret Paladin and Midrange Demon Hunter. Armor Vendor, Stage Dive/Kargath Bladefist and Bulwark of Azzinoth provide ample sustain despite the removal of Skipper Armorsmith. Corsair Cache/Outrider’s Axe replaces the previous Shield Block and Battle Rage for card draw and cycle. Bladestorm, Rancor and Brawl are your board clear tools. Venomous Scorpid is a great value option that fights or board and is just all around flexible. Lastly, the addition of Taelan Fordring into the core set is what really allows Rattlegore to be a consistent win condition, as you can easily tutor it. Even if you have already drawn Rattlegore, it will target either your Kargath Prime or Faceless Manipulators, which are also great cards to draw in those scenarios.
This deck has two, but mainly one, win condition –
Rattlegore. The whole theme of this deck is controlling the game until turn 9, dropping Rattlegore and using Teron Gorefiend and Faceless Manipulator to create a flood of Rattlegores. It does suck that with the rotation of Bloodsworn Mercenary, Warrior is stuck with using a 5 mana option to duplicate Rattlegores, which definitely hurts the potential of the deck. However, basically the only scenarios where you need multiple Rattlegores are in control matchups, where mana costs aren’t as important.
C’Thun. I’m not completely sold on C’thun as a secondary win condition, but I have been experimenting with it and helps a lot against Control Priest specifically. If you are having trouble with consistently beating out aggro decks/see a rise in aggro decks, consider taking this out for more draw consistency.
Some cards to consider taking out
Bladestorm/Brawl: I am currently not completely sure that two copies of each are good in this meta, especially since Rancor is another board clear effect. I am not sure if I prefer Bladestorm over Rancor yet though.
Faceless Manipulator: Two feels a bit overkill, especially since the deck already runs Teron. The only matchup where two is needed is Control Warlock, but even then it feels overkill most of the time. I have sometimes found use in Facelessing my Kargaths as well, but that is generally a niche scenario.
Some cards to consider adding
Sword Eater: Obviously a really good card that I don’t have just because I usually always have an Outrider’s Axe equipped because I run 2x Corsair Cache.
Coerce: Solid removal option that can deal with early threats. I have run into trouble dealing with early Paladin threats buffed with Hand of A’dal, Avenge and Blessing of Authority, which Coerce could deal with.
Barricade: I ran this in my initial list, but cut it in favor of C’thun – could be a decent option versus aggro.
Versus aggro: Minefield, Armor Vendor, Sword and Board and Acidic Swamp Ooze are your best bets. Keeping Stave Dive and Corsair Cache are good options if you already have a Sword and Board or Minefield. Lord Barov can also be a solid keep, especially if you have a Sword and Board for an early board sweep. Rancor is a decent option as well, but I would not keep it if you don’t already have Minefield or Sword and Board.
Versus control: Minefield, Corsair Cache, Taelan Fordring, and Rattlegore. Usually, all you need to do in these matchups is curve out Rattlegore, so getting it or Fordring in your opening hand accesses your win condition.
vs. Midrange: Slightly unfavored. If you have a healthy life total before Illidari Inquisitors start dropping, you will have enough time to develop Rattlegore threats. Getting tempo in this matchup can prove difficult but not impossible. I typically find getting Kargath Prime on curve to be game winning as it is effectively a 20 health swing against a class that plays for huge face damage swing turns.
vs. Lifesteal: Very unfavored. I have previously made the mistake of thinking Armorsmith+Skipper generates enough armor to not get OTKed and came to the wrong conclusion that it is a favorable matchup. This is even less true without the Skipper combo. The only way to win this matchup is somehow generating Rattlegores before they can kill you, which is extremely unlikely.
vs. Token: Favored. Your deck has plenty of answers to wide boards. Consider keeping Brawl, Bladestorm and Rancor in this matchup, as Token is virtually the only Druid archetype in the current meta.
vs. Aggro: Favored. This matchup is actually fairly difficult to execute, as Aggro/Face Hunter doesn’t lose steam and damage with Warsong Wrangler/Trampling Rhino, Piercing Shot and Mankrik/Kodobane. Nevertheless, this matchup is still favored. As long as you use your removal efficiently, you will always have more answers than they have threats. Knowing when to not play minions to play around Trampling Rhino and Piercing Shot is important.
vs. Spell: Unfavored. Mask of C’thun is just a real pain in the ass, doing 20 face damage. Devolving Missiles is the only meta “silence” option, which destroys Rattlegore. C’thun is your main win condition, but this matchup is very hard even after the nerf to Lunacy.
vs. Aggro: Favored. As long as they don’t draw the nuts, they will eventually run out of steam. Similar to Hunter though, there is a lot of room for error in this matchup. Knowing how to play around secrets is very important. One thing to consider is not playing a turn 1 Armor Vendor in this matchup if you have Minefield in your hand to guarantee that a Crabrider gets killed before it gets buffed.
vs. Control: Favored. I would strongly advise not playing Rattlegore in this matchup – it will just get Soul Mirrored or copied from a generated Gift of Luminance/Psychic Split. That being said, C’thun is a reliable win condition – just make sure to play the C’thun pieces the moment they appear in your hand to play around Mindreader Illucia.
vs. Miracle: Unfavored. Unless the Priest doesn’t generate any Focused Wills, this matchup is pretty daunting, as they have close to infinite value. That doesn’t mean this matchups is unplayable, however. With the removal of Plague of Death, your Rattlegores do have a chance to stick. With efficient board clear, you can often generate lethal threats with your Rattlegores. I think Miracle Priest is also extremely difficult to pilot, which is why I sport a positive winrate against this archetype.
vs. Miracle: Favored. With the removal of Pen Flinger, Rogues will find it hard to create lethal threats with all your armor generation.
vs. Poison: Even. Getting an early Acidic Swamp Ooze or Bulwark is really important in this matchup, or they will just create a huge weapon that will outdamage your armor. If you can get all your armor generation, you will win this matchup.
I honestly have not faced shaman for the longest time and the class seems pretty dead
vs. Control: Favored. Despite all the complaints about Tickatus, I have not lost a single deck to Control Warlock (except when i accidentally overdrew my eye of C’thun with Outrider’s Axe). Your deck doesn’t matter – with Taelan Fordring, you can aggressively mulligan for Rattlegore or Fordring to almost always get Rattlegore before they can mill it. Coupled with Faceless Manipulators and Teron Gorefiend, the Warlock will not have enough removal to last multiple Rattlegores. Because Zoo is not a popular archetype anymore, you can almost always take these greedy mulligans without getting punished.
vs. Rush: Even. They push a lot of damage, and will really get the snowball rolling if early Parade Leaders, Rokara or Playmakers don’t get answers. One tip in this matchup is to recognize if they’re setting up for an E.T.C. Playmaker Bumper Car OTK. If they are, avoid playing your Rattlegores and just keep answering their threats without creating a board state.
I think Control Warrior is in a fine state now. Without good silence options in the meta and the addition of Taelan Fordring, Rattlegore is now a reliable win condition. Even if this deck is not top tier, I am loving this deck and am still experimenting with new card choices. Feel free to leave your own opinions or questions 🙂