July 1, 2013

ICC Strategy Part 4: The Sylvanas Deck

Sylvanas is my friends' favorite character from the World of Warcraft series. Let's take a look at this staple deck provided with the Icecrown Citadel Raid.

Dark Lady Sylvanas Windrunner
Undead Ranger (Hunter Class)
35 Health 0 ATK
Song of Sylvanas: Sylvanas and allies in her party have Assault 1.
On your turn, pay 7: Flip Sylvanas.
FLIP: Shriek of the Highborne: When Sylvanas flips to this side, she deals 7 shadow damage to target scourge hero or ally. Empowered Song of Sylvanas: Sylvanas and allies in her party have Assault 2.

Already, Sylvanas has some nice modifiers always on the board. All allies in her party will have assault 1 on her front side. Let's look at the composition of the deck:

Cards: 61
Allies: 31 (51%)
Abilities: 12 (20%)
Equipment 1 (1%)
Quests: 17 (28%)

Sylvanas' deck is ally intensive- this is so that the deck synergizes better with Song of Sylvanas. Looking at your 1 drop allies, Lifemender Dorn offers little healing potential. However, Kuz'vun is a 1 drop long-range ally, meaning that he can take pot shots at opposing allies and not get hit back. That's nice. Firewarden Wyland Kaslinth is your standard 1 drop Assault 1 ally. For drop 2 allies you have Turennius Scatheblade, a nice 3/2 protector. Zugna, Windseer Apprentice is also nice- you get a double attack with her each turn and she has Assault 1 and bonuses from Sylvanas' modifier.

Dropping Vesh'ral on turn 3 is nice- he can attack immediately and has 3 ATK. Johnny Rotten has shadow resistance and deals 3 to an exhausted hero or ally. That is very nice for a 3 drop- but there are only two Johny Rotten in the deck. Your biggest hitter is Claemora Amberglare at cost 4. She is a 2/4 ally and grants a target hero or ally Assault 2 when she enters play.

This deck is offensive and is focused on pumping allies out onto the field. The allies in this deck are nothing too special; lacking any resistances or board changing qualities. It's simple to run allies in this deck: get them out and attack.

The designers of this raid decided to go easy on abilities for Sylvanas. She only has 12. Turn the Blade is nice, and will become very annoying if attached to Frostmourne. There are two in the deck, which means you can lower the ATK of Frostmourne -6. It only costs 1 too. Next we have Arcane Shot, a Hunter staple. It allows you to ping an ally or hero for 1 damage, but the real benefit is drawing  a card. For it's time, Arcane Shot is a pretty nice give and take for 2 resources. When we move up to Steady shot, it deals a constant 1 dmg to target hero or ally. Over 10 turns that has the potential to deal 7dmg, and I'm really not a fan of the card. If you stack it, that's 28dmg total over 7 turns if you can manage to keep Steady Shot in play. I wouldn't count on it.

Finally we have the big ability- Multi-shot. You can pick three heroes/allies and deal 2 damage to each of them. You are paying 5 to deal 6 damage across the board; and you can't pick the same target again. I'm not a big fan of the abilities in this deck, and I would rate them as poor.

There is only one equipment card. Deathwhisper is awesome. It's long range, meaning that stuff can't hit Sylvanas back, and has Heartstrike: If Sylvanas would deal damage to a damaged scourge with this weapon, she deals double that much instead. So for a cost of 5 to put down, 0 to swing and 6 dmg, this card will be a major pain in the ass to the boss player. With no interrupts of her own, if you use this card too much expect the boss to get rid of it.

Final Thoughts
I don't like this deck. If you play with it though- focus on getting Deathwhisper out and keep pumping those allies. Get your draw power from your quests. Hit the Lich King when you can, but sometimes you will need to make a calculated move in order to get rid of some allies.

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