The December Standard season is in full-swing now and if you’ve been reading my column for a while then you know my favorite class to play is Warlock. After One Night in Karazhan went live I spend a lot of time climbing the ladder with the very popular discard/zoo deck that revolved around getting fantastic card advantage/value/efficiency with [Malchezaar’s Imp].

So I hopped into the Standard ladder and started climbing a few ranks with my trusty Disco Lock deck. My list is very similar to the one at Tempo Storm except I’m not a fan of [Abusive Sergeant] or [Flame Imp] and I still haven’t made time to get [Imp Gang Boss]. Instead I have [Sea Giant] as well as a second [Darkshire Librarian] and a few more removal spells like [Power Overwhelming] and [Hellfire].

I hit my first roadblock pretty quickly when I started running into a whole lot of Pirate Warrior decks. You know the ones I’m talking about. Sigh. I didn’t want to abandon my favorite class but thankfully there was an answer: Renolock!

If you’re unfamiliar, this deck is built around [Reno Jackson] which introduced a new mechanic to the game at the time (League of Explorers). The mechanic is very straight-forward: if you don’t have any copies of cards in your deck, then the ability to restore your life to max triggers. This ability is especially abusive with Warlock since many of your cards as well as your hero power will drain your life.

A deck that can play aggressive and then regain all of its health? Sign me up! I was soon plowing through Aggro Shaman and Pirate Warrior decks left and right. But the match-ups aren’t all perfect. If you never find Reno, or the new addition [Kazakus], you might just be playing a sub-optimal deck. However, the value you get from those cards more than makes it worthwhile.

Some very interesting cards get included in this deck that I don’t think would otherwise ever even be considered. These include cards like [Mistress of Mixtures], [Blastcrystal Potion], and [Refreshment Vendor]. On the other hand you get to also run a lot of powerful legendary minions like [Lord Jaraxxus], [Ragnaros the Firelord], and [Sylvanas Windrunner], each of which can turn the tide of a game on their own even if you don’t find [Reno Jackson] or [Kazakus].

For now my plan is pretty simple. If I’m facing a lot of aggressive decks, I’ll switch to Reno-Lock. If I find myself up against more control or mid-range decks, I’ll swap back into Disco-Lock. It helps show off the depth of playing Warlock in the current metagame.

If you’re interested in the deck then you’ll have to make sure you have [Reno Jackson] who you can acquire from the first wing of the League of Explorers. You’ll also want to complete the second wing for [Brann Bronzebeard]. The first legend you’ll want to craft is definitely [Kazakus]. The interaction between Brann into Kazakus is too good to pass up.

After that you’ll want to round out the deck with a lot of the anti-aggro cards like [Demonwrath], [Dirty Rat], [Mind Control Tech], and [Twisting Nether]. Then you can pick whatever else you feel like throwing into the deck and have fun with it. You get to pick 30 cards which makes it a great deck for experimenting with. Some cards are really great in this deck, but you can easily mess around with half of it.

Rich has been playing Hearthstone on and off since the closed beta and has a golden E.T.C. to prove it. He enjoys playing Warlock on the ladder and wishes he could get more than five wins in an Arena run. He’s trying desperately to figure out how Hunters always seem to have Call of the Wild on curve. 

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