Forget everything I said before.

[Drakonid Operative] is the best card in the format.

Every single thing about the card is extremely powerful. A 5 mana 5/6 body is already respectable, but there are better things to be doing than just playing something like that.

You know, like finding some of the best cards in your opponent’s deck, for any situation.

One of the few things you can do that’s better than drawing raw cards, is playing formidable bodies that discover more cards. Cards that replace themselves without drawing. Cards that allow you to adapt to the trajectory of a game.

[Drakonid Operative] does all of that, and extremely well.

I strongly recommend building a [Drakonid Operative] deck, rather than just a deck with [Drakonid Operative] in it. The reasoning is pretty simple: You’re still playing a Dragon Priest deck, which tends to be underpowered, expensive, and inconsistent. You’re going to struggle against aggressive decks, and you’re also going to need something to compensate for those slow starts. Twilight Whelp is better than before, especially against Pirate Warrior, and especially when backed by a [Power Word: Shield]. [Wyrmrest Agent] also does a lot of heavy lifting against the aggro decks, and against early Jade Golems, while also requiring some investment to get rid of it. If you can hold the early game long enough to get to your Operatives, then making them do the heavy lifting on the board, while you set up whatever you get off of it, is the key. Your taunts are the key to getting there. [Power Word: Shield] is a bit of a weak tool, but it does a little bit of everything that you need. Giving your taunts more health, cantripping, and getting a favorable combat.

After the Operative hits the board, you have to play cleanup. [Excavated Evil] is great when all of your minions are bigger, but [Dragonfire Potion] is the pivotal dagger. Whether you’re behind, ahead, or at parity, this card will get you exactly where you need to be.

After this phase, you reach your end-game. [Ysera] is really good in the mirror, as well as in games where you just want to out-value your opponent, such as Reno decks, or Midrange Shaman. [Alexstrasa] is good when you want to turn the corner on a dime. [Ragnaros the Firelord] is exceptional against Reno and any [Ice Block] deck, as it’s another card that demands an answer right then and there, and the answers are typically expensive.

The second version of the deck is itself a Reno version. [Kazakus] is an incredibly powerful card that provides another tool that does exactly what most of your deck wants to do: find cards without actually drawing them. Having a plethora of options is what makes midrange decks flourish, and this is the cornerstone to it. To counteract the shaky consistency, you can add two [Drakonid Operative] to give that extra push. It’s entirely possible that you can go the old-ish school Reno-Freeze mage route and add more two ofs, especially since you can ride free Hero Powers to stability, but I’d advise against it. You don’t have the raw card draw, and a fail-safe in [Ice Block] that you do in Priest, so the most I’d add is one two-of.

If Jade decks have the best end-game, and Pirate decks have the best early game, then Operative decks are the rock in this newly established rock-paper-scissors metagame, and our rock is a secret agent, coming through!

Anthony has been competing in games for the better part of his adult life and is dedicated to improving his game, improving his community, improving himself as a person, and most importantly having fun and enjoying himself while doing so. You can check out his stream to find out which video game is the latest to catch his attention.

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