Tempo Mage Deck List Guide (December 2016, Standard) – Season 33

Class: Mage - Format: kraken - Type: tempo - Season: season-32 - Style: meta-deck - Meta Deck: Tempo Mage
Learn how to play this archetype with our Tempo Mage Deck List Guide.

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Deck Import

Tempo Mage is one of Mage’s best decks for the ladder, learn more with our Tempo Mage Deck Guide!

Tempo Mage is a deck list that has been strong for a while but is rarely top tier. Flamewaker is one of the keys to the deck, and with Blackrock Mountain rotating out of Standard in 2017, it could be your last chance to play it! The deck can be a tad inconsistent, but a lot of the RNG is manageable for the most part.

This deck list is based off RayC’s Tempo Mage.

Tempo Mage in December 2016, Season 33

Mean Streets of Gadgetzan has not brought Tempo Mage any real new inclusions. I’ve seen some experimentation with Greater Arcane Missiles, but I’m not sure whether or not it will stick in the deck.

Check out our List of the Best Standard Decks for Hearthstone Ladder

Standard Tempo Mage Mulligan Guide and Strategy

Babbling BookMana Wyrm, Cult SorcererFrostboltSorcerer's Apprentice are your general keeps. Arcane Blast is another worthwhile keep if you have a playable 1-drop or Sorcerer’s Apprentice. Flamewaker can be kept if you have The Coin or a 1 and 2 drop.

Tempo Mage Matchup Win Percentages

Here’s a look at how Tempo Mage stacks up against other decks in the meta. Thanks to Metastats for allowing us to provide these statistics!

Winrate stats are currently unavailable for this deck at the moment!

Standard Tempo Mage Game Play Strategy

This deck is all about establishing the board and being able to beat down your opponent with your minions and spells. As the name implies, you need to use the Tempo of this deck to grab the board. This is made easier with cards like Sorcerer's Apprentice, which allow you to cheaply remove minions while preserving your board and establishing more minions.

Flamewaker is the all-star in this deck because it pairs great with Sorcerer's Apprentice and your other spells which can take down a variety of early game minions. This card also does a lot of work against Warlock Zoo and other decks that take advantage of Tokens.

Water Elemental is a killer in this deck, it can put a hold on Weapon aggression from Warrior and has 6 health which can make multiple trades.

This deck is also very effective against Renolock. Reno Warlock tries to find a health total that will generally keep them out of danger, but with all of the burn and minions at your disposal it’s very hard for them to find a safe spot.

Firelands Portal is a great way to deal with popular 5 and 6 drop minions, such as Azure Drake and Emperor Thaurissan. It is a great Tempo card because it can remove while adding to your board.

Ragnaros the Firelord can finish games and help take back the board. Ragnaros is fairly popular now, so it’s a good to counter to an opponent’s Ragnaros. Rag is a great card because not only can it 2 for 1 (or more), but it has an effect that will at least get used once before your opponent can answer it.

Standard Tempo Mage Card Substitutions (Replacements)

  • Bloodmage Thalnos: I see this as one of the cards that always is in need of a sub, if you get a chance you should craft him. He’s super versatile and there’s really no good substitute for him. You can run Kobold Geomancer, but it’s not a very good replacement.
  • Arcane Blast: A very strong card that synergizes with the Spell Damage cards in the deck, but you could replace it with Forbidden Flame.

Standard Tempo Mage Combos and Synergies

Arcane Blast is a great removal card that benefits from your Spell Damage and can also remove things in the early game when paired with Sorcerer's Apprentice.

Sorcerer's Apprentice into a Flamewaker with coin and your various other spells can destroy an opponent’s board with missiles and spells.

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Discuss This Deck
  1. Kramit
    December 16, 2016 at 10:05 am

    I’m running into a lot of trouble with aggro decks, or decks that fill the board with minions… This deck doesn’t seem to have enough board clear, I feel like I’m trying to rely on the Arcane Explosion plus spell damage to clear a board and that combo rarely happens. Any suggestions on what I could substitute to add more board clear?

    • Evident - Author
      December 16, 2016 at 5:16 pm

      There’s already quite a bit of AOE in the deck, but I mean you could a Firelands Portal for another Arcane Explosion.

      • mik8s
        January 4, 2017 at 3:33 am

        I disagree; the only AOE is one Arcane Explosion. Arcane missiles and flamewalkers may do the job once in a while, but you can’t really count on them to clear the board.

        I think this is one of the reasons this deck is lacking at the moment.

  2. Papawin
    December 14, 2016 at 9:56 pm

    Good for mage cards quest.

  3. chris
    December 11, 2016 at 7:41 pm

    New Cards! Oh, wait.

    with all the cheap spells how is antonidas not in this deck? its an autowin if he gets 2 fireballs. Firelands portal is alright… but fock give me AHH-HA! all day every day.

    Lot of talk about Cabalist’s Tome… that’s like an Anti-Tempo card. “five mana – do nothing”

    • Evident - Author
      December 11, 2016 at 7:58 pm

      Antonidas is too slow right now against Pirate decks, it was actually in the deck prior to the Gadgetzan release (same for Cabalist Tome).

  4. Luenam79
    December 7, 2016 at 2:01 am

    Some hint to update this deck to season 33?

    • Evident - Author
      December 7, 2016 at 8:57 pm

      I don’t think there will be many changes honestly.

  5. LevelUp
    November 26, 2016 at 3:56 am

    Nice deck but what’s about Firelands Portals? I think it’s a necessary part of Tempo Mage.

  6. OblivionAwaits_
    November 18, 2016 at 7:38 pm

    If playing this deck in Wild, what would I add / cut?

    • Evident - Author
      November 19, 2016 at 10:06 am

      I’d just go with this version: http://www.hearthstonetopdecks.com/decks/tempo-mage-deck-list/

      I’d cut Ethereal Conjurer for maybe Barnes, and you can go Piloted Shredder instead of Water Elemental. Flamecannon would be really good against Shaman in Standard!

      • OblivionAwaits_
        November 28, 2016 at 5:03 am

        I know you’re unfamiliar with the Wild meta, but what decks are similar in playstyle to this one? I want something with a somewhat similar feel to this one while I save up gold to get Flamewaker (which I understand is an essential, right?)

        • Evident - Author
          November 28, 2016 at 8:16 am

          It would be difficult to play without Flamewaker. I’d say something like Dragon Warrior would be somewhat similar, it’s a tempo based deck with some spell and weapon (obviously not in tempo mage) based removal. Midrange Shaman would be another deck that is comparable.

  7. fishjello
    November 14, 2016 at 11:06 am

    Solid deck. Emperor discounts cabalists tome, antonidas and spells for Ant. as well as Emp being available for Barnes. with the randomness of spells you will get and crazy accounts of barnes here and there this deck feels fresh time after time as well having different win conditions. I just went on i believe a ten win streak with it going from 15 to 10. While ten isn’t impressive there is no reason why this deck can’t getting to legendary. two of my last three opponents had legendary card backs for that matter.

  8. Cruxkid
    November 12, 2016 at 5:54 pm

    I use a budget version of this deck with Rag as the only leg. Firelands portal is a great card, as is faceless summoner. Both are 2 for 1’s i dont understand why they didn’t make the cut

  9. apple
    November 10, 2016 at 9:52 pm

    This list is pretty solid. I’m so happy to have these clunky firelands portals out my game.

  10. Anonymous
    November 5, 2016 at 8:27 am

    If I don’t have Thaurissan what can I replace it with ?

  11. Xithyl
    November 4, 2016 at 11:09 am

    Is it possible to use secret eater in the deck due to massive amount of secret Paladins if so, I would like a suggestion on what card I could replace for it.

    • Evident - Author
      November 4, 2016 at 2:07 pm

      I guess if you’re playing this in wild you could swap out a Babbling Book.

  12. NOOB123
    November 4, 2016 at 8:22 am

    If I don’t have Barnes what can I replace it with ?

  13. Azureal
    October 31, 2016 at 6:16 am

    Hey Evident, if i don’t have Yogg as my only missing Piece. What would be a an ok replacement?

    • Evident - Author
      October 31, 2016 at 8:24 am

      Ragnaros, Flamestrike, Faceless Summoner, or a Water Elemental. This deck is probably better without Yogg at this point (I’ll be updating it soon)!

      • sim
        November 10, 2016 at 1:08 am

        pls tell me why yogg is so bad for this deck? cuz i really wanna add it. thank

        • Evident - Author
          November 10, 2016 at 8:59 am

          Well, Ragnaros is much better right now. Yogg is very inconsistent after the nerf, you could maybe cut a Babbling Book.

  14. DeathRoe
    October 24, 2016 at 9:29 am

    I’m always losing to Druids with this deck. Anything I can change that might help?

  15. JerryCurl
    October 6, 2016 at 7:38 am

    You gotta have some massive testes to not play Flamestrike in this meta.

  16. Sphenoeides
    October 4, 2016 at 9:20 am

    So, Yogg is still viable even after the nerf?

    • Evident - Author
      October 4, 2016 at 9:31 am

      Not sure yet, I’m waiting before I update this list.

    • Bravace
      October 7, 2016 at 4:19 pm

      Sorry, i’m a bit late to the party. 🙁
      I’ve used this deck exclusively since the nerfs, i’m currently sitting at Rank 14 just now & haven’t had to push the “Emergency Yogg Button” yet.
      The deck is strong as hell.

      • Bravace
        October 7, 2016 at 4:20 pm

        Oh & i’ve been on a winstreak since the start of rank 17.

    • YourMotherWasAMurloc
      October 9, 2016 at 3:21 am

      Yogg is still very good, cause if you play it when the opponent has 4+ minions the chances of him killing himself are small and even if he killed himself, he probably killed the opponent’s minions too.

  17. NAME
    October 3, 2016 at 10:28 pm

    reason for ARCANE EXPLOSION? i think don’t need that much for tempo mage

  18. Nisbo
    October 3, 2016 at 1:17 am

    Played this deck four times. Played as perfectly as I could four times. Lost to shaman four times.
    Deck deleted

    • Anonymous
      October 4, 2016 at 9:37 am

      sure u played perfectly.

    • Nisbo
      October 8, 2016 at 9:10 pm

      crafted a cabilist tome and now i went from rank 14 to rank 7 pretty quick.

      is actually a good deck

    • BattleBozy#1437
      November 3, 2016 at 1:39 pm

      Tempo Mage has a 70% winrate against Midrange Shaman. I seriously doubt you are playing perfectly.

  19. Shuama
    September 27, 2016 at 12:49 am

    Is there a replacement for babbling book?

  20. RanneyMan
    September 25, 2016 at 12:51 pm

    Is two Cabalist’s Tome’s really necessary? If not what could I replace it with?

    • Evident - Author
      September 26, 2016 at 10:03 am

      I think they are very solid in this deck, but you could maybe go Faceless Summoner or Ethereal Conjurer.

  21. HellDragonDante
    September 21, 2016 at 11:46 pm

    Solid build; I’ve had several games where it’d down to one health on either side!

  22. Meme Man
    September 21, 2016 at 1:33 pm

    No Flamestrike?

  23. tutu
    September 21, 2016 at 11:20 am

    is there anything that can replace flamewaker? i dont have them tho

    • Evident - Author
      September 21, 2016 at 1:55 pm

      I don’t think you can play this deck without him unfortunately.

  24. Darkseid
    September 19, 2016 at 7:54 pm

    Has anyone tried Arcane Giants in these decks? With the amount of spells seems like a no-brainer.

  25. Anonymous
    September 16, 2016 at 9:56 am

    Hi Evident. How about emperor? Is it replaceable? or should I search for another deck?

  26. gazza
    September 14, 2016 at 5:02 pm

    do arcane giants fit inthis deck and what would you replace?

    • Evident - Author
      September 15, 2016 at 10:57 am

      I’ve seen people try it, but they rarely stick in the list.

      • Jgrhymes
        September 29, 2016 at 10:01 am

        I tried to run these as well (took out Antonidas and one arcane blast) and I found that while you can likely play one of them by turn 7 or 8, you rarely need to and it’s usually the slowest option you have. They never won me a game and I wouldn’t consider them a win condition. The win rate was still fine with them, but the Antonidas is just better for situations where you aren’t able to gain and control the board.

        Feel tree to play around with them and what to sub out, but this list is fairly optimized to me. Having said that, I do play 1 flamestrike because Shaman is so prevalent right now.

        • Tiandes
          October 1, 2016 at 8:53 am

          thing is, against Shaman, you are usually already dead by turn 7!

          I found mirror image to be very good in the current meta, 2 taunt against Shaman, zoo and even hunter is priceless.

  27. Haos
    September 11, 2016 at 2:11 pm


    Assuming that Archmage Antonidas and Bloodmage Thalnos aren’t crucial in this deck,any good replacements ? Thanks!

    • Evident - Author
      September 11, 2016 at 4:07 pm

      I listed replacements above, but Medivh, Ragnaros, and Kobold Geomancer.

  28. Mars
    September 11, 2016 at 12:54 pm

    of the four end game solutions, which 2 would you suggest for ladder? Medivh, rag, antonidus, yogg?

    • Evident - Author
      September 21, 2016 at 7:48 pm

      I think I like Rag and Yogg, but Antonidas is good in this version.

  29. Mars
    September 11, 2016 at 12:50 pm

    Thank you for making an updated guide on Tempo Mage