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Class Power Ranking for August is based on our findings from our September Wild Hearthstone Meta Snapshot. For Class Power Ranking analysis, we allocate points to each deck from Tier 0 to Tier 3 then sum them up. The point system for rating a single deck is as below:
Tier 0: 22
Tier 1: 18 (High), 15 (Mid), 12 (Low)
Tier 2: 9 (High), 7 (Mid), 5 (Low)
Tier 3: 3 (High), 2 (Mid), 1 (Low)
Each deck is also assigned a popularity ranking and a respective coefficient multiplier based on its popularity. The highest multiplier is 12 and the lowest is 7. For example, if Odd Paladin is High Tier 1 and has a multiplier of 12, it will bring the class an additional 216 points.
Therefore, a class can be placed highly on the Ranking system based on one (or both) of these elements: having a few strong decks (deck power) or having many decks (class diversity). If classes share the same score, the class with fewer decks will be ranked higher.
Rank 1 (0) – 510 points
The balance scale of the Wild meta is officially tipped. For the first time since the inception of this report, there’s a single class that earned more than 500 points, having both a Top tier 1 deck and the most number of viable decks. This is also the first report with four dumpster classes (scoring below 150 points), meaning that the popularity and power level of the top classes are so high that they grabbed the majority of current meta representation. You can check HSReplay meta popularity to see how Mage (namely), Warlock, Shaman and Paladin are making up 70% of the current meta, and that’s not a good sign for diversity.
Warlock is the second most played class in terms of playrate, just behind Mage. However, while Mage players are only maining a couple of decks, Warlocks are rocking an overabundance of archetypes. There are seven strong decks to choose from, with Zoo Warlock presenting another option that is popular among the playerbase (though not up to par in terms of power level).
SN1P-SN4P Warlock is undoubtedly the strongest Warlock deck at the moment, with Cube Warlock not falling far behind. There must be a reason for these decks’ successes, but where do they cross path? The answer is simple: Plague of Flames. It’s no myth that Plague of Flames is probably one of the strongest conditional removal tools ever printed, allowing you to remove a number of minions to develop your own board as well. This is particularly true with the case of Cubelock, a deck that’s transitioned to playing Eggs to capitalize on this OP newcomer. A Plague of Flames on a few eggs and Voidcaller could well be game over.
Darkest Hour Warlock and Reno Warlock haven’t been utilizing Plague of Flames as well. Darkest Hour has to waste a token generation, and it could be awkward after they’ve gotten a decent board. Renolock can only play one copy of Flames, along with one copy of all the eggs. However, they are still strong enough to move up a few ranks in this month’s snapshot. Reno Warlock, in particular, has proven to be very solid, capable of both a tempo-based and a control-based playstyle. Oh, the magic of Zephrys!
Mecha’thun Warlock and Treachery Warlock moves the other direction as they can’t really play with any of the new toys. Other strategies have evolved, but they still rock the same core as pre-expansion. In a meta full of Mages and SN1P-SN4P Warlock, it’s not a particularly pleasing place to be. As with Even Warlock? Let’s just say they just really dislike Mages and Reno decks.
Rank 2 (0) – 374 points
So much for diversity! Apart from Warlock, every other class (Mage included) doesn’t have more than 5 decks within the relevant tiers. Not having many tricks under her sleeves, Jaina is feeling a bit short on breath in the race against Gul’dan. Secret Mage is still the strongest deck in the format, but the meta has evolved to becoming incredibly hostile towards it. Turns out you don’t earn that many points if you’re not Tier 0. It only breaks even against SN1P-SN4P Warlock, its direct competitor, while loses quite a few percentages if happens to run into a random Eater of Secrets (or two). Another vanguard – Quest Mage – has been severely weakened as well. It loses quite a bit of traction, with other decks can now do things just as crazy, but faster and more reliably.
While its other strong decks are struggling to hold on to their point reserves, all hope is placed on Reno Mage, the best Reno deck at the moment. It’s a little bit of a shame that Pocket Galaxy was nerfed right after Pocket Reno Mage showed signs of becoming a new Tier 1 deck, but the deck itself is still pretty strong. With a lot of option to build a strong deck, the question you should ask facing it is not just if you’re playing against Reno Mage, but also what Reno Mage you are facing.
Exodia Mage is pretty weak in the current meta, but a couple of people still have success with it. The current Exodia Mage still plays Ice Barrier over Flame Ward, with a player deeming the existence of Flame Ward alone is enough to force people to play around it. There’s no reason to play Odd Mage at the moment, as it’s become even weaker with the departure of Conjurer’s Calling.
There’s some interesting development with regards to Big Spell Mage though. Let’s see if Tortollan Pilgrim, Puzzle Box of Yogg-Saron and King Phaoris are enough to bring the deck onto the map.
Rank 3 (+1) – 254 points
Paladin is no longer a one-trick – its persistent climb throughout the last couple of power charts confirmed it. it’s long overdue, but Mech Handbuff Paladin has finally overthrown Odd Paladin and becomes the strongest Paladin archetype. Unlike Odd Paladin who has a relatively tough time into Defile and Arcane Flakmage, Handbuff’s ability to go thick and tall can deliver quick and effective punches before opponents have the chance to stabilize. Its position within Tier 1 for the first time ever has yielded Paladin enough extra points to steal Shaman’s spot by a small margin.
Odd Paladin travels the opposite direction, but its fairly consistent playrate still renders it a competent point earner. The BakuGenn insurance ensures that it can almost never stray too far from the top tier, with its consistency still proven enough to edge out many adversaries.
Murloc Paladin and Aggro Paladin still hover around Tier 3. Aggro Paladin is basically a weaker Handbuff Paladin in almost all categories, while Murloc Paladin fails to live up to the hype. Seems like Tip the Scales on Turn 5 isn’t that broken when every other deck can do the same thing!
Exodia Paladin has gotten a slight bump, as the deck becomes more and more refined. Now it can keep on being lacklustre, but loses a little bit less now.
Rank 4 (-1) – 239 points
Thrall is a proven loser of Saviors of Uldum, falling even further comes this snapshot. Murloc Shaman dropped to Middle of Tier 2, and Even Shaman joined it after a long layover in Tier 1. They are just not effective against the field anymore: the former finds itself struggles against other top decks, while the latter has to find correct tech cards in its pocket meta.
Meanwhile, there haven’t been many new entrants that shows the potential of racking up points as of yet. Shudderwock Shaman, Aggro Shaman and Big Shaman plummeted in popularity, resulting in Shaman’s presence on ladder dwindling by the days.
It is not all without hope. Shaman’s playrate is still within the Big 5, with its share on ladder even higher than Paladin. Also, we’ve detected a couple of fringe decks that are showing promises. Jade Shaman got a huge boost with the introduction of Corrupt the Waters, meaning that creating 15/15 Jades are a walk in the park for it now. Jade Shaman can confidently outvalue many decks in the format, as long as it can complete its quest early. Therefore, we advise thinning the spells in the deck to make room for early battlecries like the Lackey package and Fire Fly, since they speed up the quest, while spells don’t. Reno Shaman is another archetype that’s starting to make waves. You can still work towards a really powerful Shudderwock end-game, while you have Zephrys and Reno Jackson to help you get to it. Earthquake and the N’Zoth package naturally fit into a deck where you can only play one-ofs. Expect Reno Shaman to get better in the coming weeks.
Rank 5 (0) – 231 points
The state of Rogue is a peculiar one. It’s supposed to climb the power chart, but it doesn’t. It’s supposed to gain a fair share of the meta, but it doesn’t. Odd Rogue is still favourable into Secret Mage and SN1P-SN4P Warlock, but a 55% winrate can easily be dismissed as insignificant. With many other decks designed to swing and regain control of the board state, incremental pressure strategies like BakuGenn are starting to show their weaknesses, and Odd Rogue is no exception. A general lack of swing turns and difficulties in tech choices can prove to hold Odd Rogue back in the future.
Kingsbane Rogue, on the other hand, made a massive jump to return to Tier 2. It’s one of the most effective strategies into SN1P-SN4P Warlock, while still being generally really annoying to deal with for control decks. If a Secret Mage doesn’t play Ice Block, it might have a hard time against Kingsbane as well. In its current form, Kingsbane feels like a generally strong deck that’s just waiting for a favourable shift in meta, and this certainly feels like its time to shine.
Burgle Rogue is no longer a meme. The ability to build a big lifesteal weapon with almost unlimited charges is a bit reminiscence of the old Kingsbane Rogue. Burgle cards are by nature very value-oriented, and when you shore up the weaknesses with high tempo tools and consistent life gain, the deck suddenly looks formidable. Aggro Rogue is still at the top of Tier 3, with nothing particularly exciting to pick up on.
Anka the Buried is already showing signs of being a very strong standalone card. The one card enables so many combos, from Mecha’thun to Leeroy + Cube, or just generally allows for massive stat dump. The problem with Rogue is to gain a foothold on board until Anka goes online. The generic deathrattle package, while strong, doesn’t have a lot of defensive capabilities. Rogues have had these problems for ages which hold slower strategies back, and it doesn’t seem like it will change anytime soon.
Mill Rogues are rolling back to the old N’Zoth playstyle, with Khartut Defender being a notable upgrade. It is not much stronger but is still extremely annoying to play against.
Rank 6 (+1) – 142 points
Druid holds the title of The King of the Dumpster. There’s nothing to be proud of for gaining a rank while you lose 80 points in the process. Jade Druid is a strong deck, undoubtedly, but with every Reno decks and their mothers are playing Skulking Geist at the moment, they have to resort to teching against the meta. If you play King Phaoris, you can steal some Reno games, but in return, you lose some more aggro games. Jade Druid can’t beat a SN1P-SN4P Warlock who plays Mecha’thun either.
It’s not at all a good sign when Jade is the only deck inside Tier 2 for Druid. That’s how a class slips into dumpster tier: having a single Tier 2 deck and not much else. Aggro Druid, although a good choice into SN1P-SN4P Warlock, is being criminally underplayed. Aggro Druid’s core has always been so-so in Wild, and the fact that it didn’t receive anything over the top just pushes it lower down the pecking order. There’s hope, of course, there’s always hope for this archetype, but people will have to pick it up first.
Aviana Druid is in a similar position – it is very underplayed. The deck is still capable of producing success, but its high skill ceiling combined with a hostile meta is not allowing it to do so. Jepetto is still proving to be really effective in Aviana Druid, however. If there is one card that people predicted exactly what it was going to do, that would be this balloon loving fella, as he single-handedly put Aviana Druid (especially Togwaggle) back into relevancy.
Linecracker Druid has tried and failed miserably to break the meta; that leaves the quest to find the new OP Druid deck falls on the hands of Reno Druid. Reno Druid can very effectively utilize on a Malygos package, with Elise copying either burn or 1 mana minions. Zephrys is an incredible tool in Reno Druid, providing an extra Moonfire for lethal when called upon, or is generally used to deal with tricky situations. This might be the new Druid deck to watch out for.
Rank 7 (+1) – 121 points
To say that Warrior didn’t gain anything from the new expansion is incorrect: they got an entirely new archetype, along with actual new cards for Pirate Warrior after a long while. But it’s hard to compensate when you have been behind for so long. Nevertheless, Warrior jumped a rank from its usual Rank 8, having the exact same points as Priest but having its top deck ranked higher.
Throw your armours away and pick up your eye-patches, because it’s time to become a Pirate. With the ability to tech weapons according to matchups, Pirate Warrior finds itself occupying the niche in the meta: it could be a very effective anti-meta deck if you tech it right. The problem with Pirate Warrior is always consistency: you sometimes draw only weapons, you sometimes don’t draw any, you sometimes draw Patches. If all aligns, Pirate Warrior is great.
Taunt Warrior has failed to live up to its potential, as Aggro decks aren’t as prominent anymore. Taunt Warrior doesn’t like the new SN1P-SN4P fad a lot and struggles to close out games against Control decks. The very same problem is presented with Odd Warrior, although they can play Gluttonous Ooze to deal with Mages a little bit better, and can tinker with Archivist Elysiana in matchups that are going to fatigue. Dr. Boom’s nerf hurt a bit though. We think that Odd Warrior might even slip outside of Tier 2 in the next report.
All other Warrior decks belong in the meme tier, and should be treated as non-existent.
Rank 8 (-2) – 121 points
What the hell has happened to Priest? The fall of Priest only goes to show how much the class has relied on Big Priest, and what can happen to a class that only relies on a single powerful deck.
Priest was absolutely destroyed by the last round of nerfs. It’s strongest deck – Inner Fire Priest – received a massive blow by the departure of its strongest pressure tool, Extra Arms. The deck is now without both an alternate win condition and an early game big hitter. Inner Fire Priest is back to where it was pre-Extra Arms – bottom of Tier 2 – for having an explosive gameplan, but only a single gameplan. Not to mention how the nerf to Extra Arms single-handedly wipe Aggro Priest out of existence as well. Only now do we realise how powerful of a card it was.
There’s not much else to say about Big Priest. People underestimated how a single mana increase in Barnes can put a toll on the deck, and it showed. Big Priest really needed the highroll to consistently win; without it, it’s just a mediocre Tier 3 deck. Couple that with a highly hostile meta towards it, Big Priest’s playability is put under serious doubt.
Mind Blast Priest is incredibly lacklustre, without questions. There’s not a single new card that makes sense in that deck, except maybe a copy of Sandhoof Waterbearer. It struggles to win games against many other decks in the meta at the moment.
At least Blizzard is not that cruel. They didn’t nerf Reno Priest, for instance. As with every other Highlander decks, Reno Priest received enough support for it to be formidable again. The 20 rank jump sure showed it. Being a combo deck that can consistently fend off aggression, Reno Priest might look like the go-to deck for Priest enthusiasts in the upcoming month.
Rank 9 (0) – 106 points
Hunters have stayed at the bottom for so long we might start calling this the Hunter rank. Hunters are both subpar in power and diversity, with only three archetypes passing the playable threshold.
Mech Hunter is their only saving grace, but it’s gotten no new toys. Nevertheless, Mech Hunter has proven time-to-time again that it’s capable of thriving in whatever meta was thrown at it. Especially in this meta, where it has games against both of the top decks. Even without any support, Mech Hunter manages to find itself in Mid-tier 2; that’s a pretty impressive feat.
Being another Reno deck, Reno Hunter obviously gets the Blizzard treatment and climb quite a few ranks in our tierlist. The deck keeps the essence of Hunter pressure and enhance it with the flexibility provided by Zephrys, Reno and Dinotamer Brann. Hunter’s Highlander tools are still a bit behind compared to other Reno decks, but that doesn’t mean it’s bad.
Secret Hunter actually shows a lot of potentials, but it faces a huge problem in the current meta: it plays secrets. The secrets themselves aren’t a problem (Pressure Plate is a pretty neat card), the problem is Mage. Not just because Mages murder it, but also (mainly) because Mages exist. There’s so much secret hate on ladder that it’s impossible to go 5 games without getting your secrets destroyed by some random 4 drops. As such, Secret Hunter performs miserably, although it’s core power should’ve taken it to High Tier 3 at least.
Just like the case with Warrior, all other Hunter decks are kinda bad. You probably should stick to either Mech or Reno Hunter.