How to be a Warlord: Magus Death Deck Analysis

Warlord Final Chps Magus Death: Deck Analysis

Hunter Bluethorn title ScreenIn this series of guides, a wizard from each school is made from scratch and thrown into PvP matches until they achieve Warlord Rank. This is basically a walk-through of how to progress in the arena, and is intended for players new to arena, or for those who have struggled to gain rank. The goal is to show the simplest set-up for each school and demonstrate that- with the right tools and strategy- anyone can do well in PvP (even without crowns or perfect pets).

As stated in the previous post, I’ve taken it upon myself to finish the two schools that Sparrow didn’t get to: Death and Fire. I’m not nearly as good as Sparrow is, so I’ve decided to spread the process over a few more articles, before finishing up with the guide.

In this article, I’ll be taking a look at the some of the Mid-level Death decks here on Duelist. And hopefully, I’ll be able to figure out how I want to go with my own.

The Decks

Kenzie's Adept Death Main

Kenzie's Adept Death Side

Here we have the lovely Kenzie Rain’s setup, featured in her Adept Death with Balance Mastery Guide a few months ago. At 30, I’m able to copy pretty much anything here if I need to.

(Note: This setup was created well before the Reshuffle changes.)

This is a solid setup that clearly worked for her. Shield coverage has a few school-specific holes. I’m guessing Tower handles Life, and you’re not going to be shielding Mino from Myth anyway. No trained Ice shield either, probably couldn’t afford it after grabbing Sand. Since I’m doing pure Death, though, I’ll see what I can spend there.

Sandstorm provides good minion coverage, can clobber most standard ones. I’m still debating on whether to go attack heavy. I like her use of Animate here, two copies. I’d like to incorporate that myself.

 

Blaze Raven's Death Deck

Blaze Raven's Death Side

The decks featured here are from Blaze Raven’s Magus 30-32, featured on his blog and the main site. While this is my exact level range, Blaze is running Balance Mastery while I can’t.

I immediately notice the shield coverage; everything but Ice. Running Deck of the Lotus really seems to give you more breathing room here. Blaze has also supercharged his healing with four Fairy and four Sacrifice.

Balance Spells come completely out of side, as are most of his attacks. Sand for minions, TC Judges for that second finisher option. I’m not sure if I’ll end up running TC Infallible, but I’m leaning towards it. Bazaar gear isn’t going to give me good accuracy, or a way to get through Commander Gear resist.

Jason Deck Final

Here we have Zachary Strider’s Deck from his Community Blog “Chronicles of Mid-Level PvP”, specifically this post if you’d like a great guide that uses some crowns. (This was the best resolution I could grab from his site. I’ll see if he can get me the originals). Jason’s Magus Death is 35, which means extra TP and I think one higher tiered death spell.

Anyway, I see that he skips over animate, not counting the item card. He describes his strategy as very offensive, with most of his matches finished in under 15 rounds. Zachary leans heavy on the Infallible. TC Deadly Minotaur  (65 +600 damage) come from the bazaar, and are a unique and surprisingly effective touch I don’t see often.

Zachary has told me that while Doom is incredible useful, he’s not often in situations that require it. I count this as good news. Being Level 30, I’m restricted to Doom out of side, and those can dry up fast.

Master death deck 1v1

master death 1v1 sidedeck

Going even higher here. Monarch gives us a well received Master Death setup from his Master Class Necromancy article. This is a pure Death setup, no Masteries.

Monarch has a few more points available at 42, but still trains very practically. At least two shields for every school. Doom. Tons of empty space, and tons of attacks in both Main and Side.

Just like Zachary above, Monarch’s entire build functions on a high tempo offense, so he doesn’t have much time for establishing minions and the like. I’d like to be able to run something high tempo-ish also, but I’m not sure what the average pure Death build is at Magus. Or what will even work.

Considerations

Already, I feel like I’m facing down a ton of options. I suppose I’ll just list some of my main concerns here.

Minion and Minion Control

Death does not have a four pip Area of Effect (AoE), which has been the classic way of battling your opponent’s minions. What we do have, though, are Drain Spells. Many Necromancers use Drains like Vampire to kill minions, since you’re not hitting through resist. That guarantees a nice return on health. This also tends to scare your opponent into holding minions back, if he/she sees you absorbing so much health from them.

animateOn my side, I have Animate. Azores taught us the usefulness of Animate at high level. The 4-6 pip minions cast Weakness like its a business. Kenzie and Blaze also run Animate, while Monarch and Zachary do not. I think that just goes back to the Slow vs Fast Tempo style: Slower styles have time to establish minion, Faster ones do not. A fast tempo appeals to me, but that Weakness factory could really help with my resist issues. And in this guide, I’m looking to get the reader to Warlord. I’m going to need what works better for a low Magus Necromancer.

Shields

I’m going to need good coverage with such low, low resist. Tower and Volcanic Shields are a no-brainer. I’ll get Dream Shield (-70% Myth/Life) and the single Death Shield for free. The question there will be do I put them in deck, and how many. Finally, do I spend an extra point to pick up the Ice Shield? Above, Monarch says yes, while Blaze, Zachary, and Kenzie don’t bother with it.

Accessory Spells (Cloak, Stun Block, Conviction)

The Second Age update seemed to change some people’s reliance on Cloak. I know many high rank players that removed it from their decks. Only one of the four decks above run Cloak, considering Zachary, Blaze, and Monarch are from a few months into 2nd age.

Stun Convict CloakThere’s also Stun Block and Conviction. Monarch grabbed Stun Block, though at Master he has more points. Both are useful in their own right, but I have no clue if I’ll need them at 30.

I guess I’m asking if these three spells are worth the TP?

Loremaster Farming

Second Age also brought the Loremaster, our greatest friend and worst enemy, all at the same time. She has two spells for a pure Necromancer: Lord of Night and Deer Knight. Either of these would be fun additions, but every Death I talk to tells me how Deer is a game changer for Death at almost every level. I’m definitely going to farm for it and test it out myself.

Looking for Deck (and TP) Advice

There’s not much you can do to help me if you don’t know what I have trained. Here is what I have so far:

  • Five points to Tower
  • Three points to Weakness
  • One point in Reshuffle

That leaves me with five remaining points.

If anyone has any answers at all for the questions I asked, or anything I didn’t mention, feel free to bring it up in the comments. Suggestions, concerns, and feedback on what to make sure I have in deck or where to spend my points are all welcome.

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Leave A Comment!

  • This is such an interesting compare/contrast of various deck setups. I have played level 29 Death for a long time and tried several different strategies, all of them successful and fun. I do think my deck changed some from when I was first starting out with no gear to when I had all my Commander gear. With the gear, I felt like I had more flexibility and could spend more rounds on offense because I could take a few hits.

    I have never been a big fan of Doom at mid-level even though I love it at high level. For me, a side deck stuffed with Poison and Vampire has always worked just fine.

    As for spending your Training Points, I know Cloak has lost some of its utility in the 2nd Age after the Reshuffle change, but I still think it is useful in the smaller mid-level decks. I can’t wait to see how this turns out, good luck!

  • This is such an interesting compare/contrast of various deck setups. I have played level 29 Death for a long time and tried several different strategies, all of them successful and fun. I do think my deck changed some from when I was first starting out with no gear to when I had all my Commander gear. With the gear, I felt like I had more flexibility and could spend more rounds on offense because I could take a few hits.

    I have never been a big fan of Doom at mid-level even though I love it at high level. For me, a side deck stuffed with Poison and Vampire has always worked just fine.

    As for spending your Training Points, I know Cloak has lost some of its utility in the 2nd Age after the Reshuffle change, but I still think it is useful in the smaller mid-level decks. I can’t wait to see how this turns out, good luck!

    • popcicool7777777

      Right.

  • ~ByzantineRhino~

    I’m thinking reshuffle, since that is a near to must.
    Cloak is still useful to me, because you can use a cloaked charm on them and they’ll think its a weakness when its really an infect.
    There are many options out there. You could use the other 3 tp on sandstorm, or the 3 spells you were considering.
    Spirit blade might be useful, but if your going to use a high tempo strategy, are you going to waste a round using a blade for 1 pip while you can use another for 0 pips?
    I am no expert at mid level. These are just my thoughts, based on my high level experience and my observations from mid level matches.

  • theonlyone522

    I would get reshuffle and sprite if you are going for minion deck. Otherwise I would get sand and reshuffle, snow shield and maybe cloak/stun block/spirit blades. I perrsonally have no problems without cloak or spirit blades.

    • Yes, I do love me some Snow Shields, and I especially like to cloak them. 😛

      • izabera

        ikr? everybody’s always thinking “are you kidding me? i know it’s a tower shield!”

        • Oh joy

          About sand, isn’t this a no mastery set? So sandstorm would be pointless

    • Anthony FireSword

      I second the first suggestion, at magus level even a death wiz needs sprite (without TRAINED enchants, those vampires won’t cut it for a really big needed heal, unless your hp is low enough that you can sacrifice to kill yourself so any infections will be removed, but this is a risky (and unreliable from second) strategy. After all, you get pixie for free, and sprite can allow you to begin to heal off a decent hit before casted (or infected/dispelled) with good prediction as well as being a cost effective way to remove the oh so common infection/dispel. As for reshuffle, its pretty self explanatory. You even mentioned yourself that bazaar gear might not be enough to deal with the 50+ commander gear resists, so you need as many attacks as you can get without having your sideboard being the source for 90% of your attacks (since you’re too low a level to have the ability to multiply with shuffle), sine if they can somehow tank your whole side deck (as VERY unlikely as this is, but with that resist plus the common mc sprite/fortify/fairy/healing currents…), your in a very sticky situation. Hope this helps :).

      • Psylent Night

        Ty Guys! Liking all these suggestions.

        LOL I can’t believe I forgot to include that I trained Reshuffle. Post is fixed now 😀

    • Oh joy

      About sand., isn’t this a no mastery set, so sand would be pointless?

    • Tyler Moonblade

      This is supposed to be a “how to be warlord” guide….. In other words he’s probably not going to be using sand because he doesn’t have balance mastery.

  • Oh joy

    I’ve done pvp at this lvl and got to commander before the age cut. On my death i trained cloak and shuffle, as well as stun block. Also snow shield and spirit blade it works well, even in 2nd age, but I’m sure about with the Aquila update. But I’d say train them and give it a whirl, worse case scenario you take it out of your deck

  • BreakCloud

    I also have a magus death but has left untouched because idk how to pvp with it. Lately ive been trying to farm loremaster for deer knight and lord of night, but of course it is not easy to obtain. I trained weakness, ice to tower, spirit blade, and reshuffle. As of now i dont know what to train next (possibly cloak?). I assume there is a part 2 to this? Also I currently been doing master myth 2v2 and its working well so far. Last but not least if anyone would like to watch my partner’s video as we attempt to reach warlord that would be greatly appreciated.
    http://m.youtube.com/watch?v=3DlcH1eavUo&feature=c4-feed-u

    • Psylent Night

      Hi!

      Yes there will be more to this, most likely the first part of the guide. I’m sort of figuring everything out as I go along. Master Myth seems interesting, btw. Nice video!

      • BreakCloud

        Thanks! I cant wait until this guide continues so i can also apply to my death. As of now, i like zach strider’s deck as well as monarch’s l. They both deliver some strong offense with a little touch of heals as well. Although death minotaurs are hard to obtain these days? Anyway good luck and i hope to see more! 🙂

  • NoMore

    First you should find a style of of play that appears more suitable to you. I have my magus deck style for death that does use a little bit of what you’re lookin for. I’d suggest yes on ice shields and cloaks(that way you can trick an ice when they think they have a win then boom 80% shield;)) just play around with setup and look what’s best for you!

  • theonlyone522

    These would be “roughly” my ranked deck set ups. If you train sprite, just take out the sands and put whatever else you think is needed like doom.

    • Psylent Night

      Nice, I like this.

      I was doing the calculations. At 35 I could afford both sand and sprite, but at 30 I’m missing one point after tower, weak, and shuffle. So its either sand and 3 points, or sprite and 1 point, but not both. Which one of the two is more desirable?

      • theonlyone522

        If you use the slow approach of minions, I would train sprite to be able to heal efficiently. Since you would be play slow, with death you don’t have to kill the opposing minion immediately, you can either vampire or poison depending on your situation. I would go for sand for a none minion approach so you can take out the opposing much more quickly. This approach you probably won’t have time to heal because you will blade and just spam poison from the side deck, combined with infects, sands(if minion) vampires(if you need health). So sprite with minion approach, sand for aggressive approach. You can still go aggressive without sand though but you’d have to be more careful.

  • Frost Monarch

    You can also remove those uber plagues from the sideboard and add monstrous banshees. I find them helpful since power pips can be hard to come by.

    • Psylent Night

      I think I might consider some Banshee actually. There have been a handful of times where I’ve had to stall the kill shot because of a white pip.

  • DevinD

    I am a lvl 31 death, When I ws 28 it said I should go to the hunch back at the death school but he didn’t give me the quest for animate. Are their any requirements to get it? P.S I’m on crimson fields in mooshu. Help appreciated.

    • Did you do all of your other school quests from Dworgyn already?

      • DevinD

        Yea I have.

  • Edward

    I have a magus death and i cant pvp I just need more help i have the full set from the epic card and the epic wand is this OK Gear?