The idea is to gain and maintain board control since turn 1.
Flame Imp is probably the best option cause the 3 damage isn't going to hurt you that much at the beginning of the game and the potentially damage to the enemy's face.
If you're facing an aggro deck, keeping the minions with Taunt may be a good strategy.
Possessed Villager is always a good option too, it sticks well to the board.
This Zoo Warlock is based on a bunch of Zoos out there. I’ve mixed up, in my opinion, the best cards and synergies. Every card is important and has it’s reason. That’s why this deck doesn’t use Doomguard, the potentially discard of two cards is too much to handle. The only exception is Soulfire, that must be used with care, just when you really need and always try to avoid losing core cards.
As said, the main strategy of the deck is to gain and maintain board control very early in the game. It’s not an aggro or face deck, and you should trade your minions when it’s a good value trade; otherwise, let your opponent do the trades and press him with some damage. If you lose the board and let your opponent create and maintain his own, you probably lost the game.
You should be aware of board cleaners. When you see it’s coming, keep smaller minions in hand to regain the board the next turn. Minions like Possessed Villager and Imp Gang Boss are great to avoid or postpone a cleaning or, at least, to keep some board after that.
A smart opponent will frequently play minions you can’t kill with your board, or would need to trade several minions for just one, weakening your board presence. In these cases, you should use cards like Abusive Sergeant, Dire Wolf Alpha, Dark Iron Dwarf and Power Overwhelming. These are cards that deliver a “surprise damage”, and that’s very strong in the deck.
By turn 5 or 6, your opponent will have something around 15 HP and it’s time to think about pushing some more damage and finish the game. Playing big minions like Sea Giant and the combo Power Overwhelming + Void Terror is generally a good idea to keep your board and make pressure. Defender of Argus is great to boost medium minions and achieve the same effect as big ones.
Brann Bronzebeard synergize with a lot of cards: Abusive Sergeant, Bilefin Tidehunter, Dark Peddler, Void Terror, Dark Iron Dwarf and Defender of Argus. Be aware of using Flame Imp or Leeroy Jenkins while Brann is in play, the battlecries may hurt you more than expected. Usually your opponent will try to kill Brann the next turn, so try to use it wisely.
Knife Juggler can get some value from Forbidden Ritual, Bilefin Tidehunter, Possessed Villager and Imp Gang Boss. It’s a great card to help you keep the board clean, specially when your deck has a lot of weak minions.
Crazed Alchemist swaps a minion HP and ATK. During the process, temporary bonuses become permanent. In other words, it can give extra life for a minion after buffed by Abusive Sergeant, Dark Iron Dwarf or Dire Wolf Alpha, it’s specially effective if they received double buff with Brann. Remember that it doesn’t work with Power Overwhelming cause the minion is still going to die at the end of the turn. If Brann is in play, the swap will occur twice, leaving HP and ATK original values, but permanent. The swap mechaninc also can be used to kill an enemy minion with zero attack, like Flametongue Totem or Doomsayer.
Darkshire Councilman can be buffed by Forbidden Ritual, Bilefin Tidehunter and even by Possessed Villager and Imp Gang Boss. Players are aware of it’s growth capabilities and the card is usually killed in a couple turns.
Void Terror is my personal addition to the deck. Most players won’t expect you playing it and you can use it as a surprise effect. The main idea is to save minion that are going to die next turn, by opponent removals or by Power Overwhelming. It can absorb temporary bonuses as well and can take advantage if Brann is in play, cause Void Terror will receive twice the HP and ATK from the minions.
Conclusion and results
Overall, it’s a budget competitive deck. My goal is to bring the aggro Zoo a little closer to a midrange play, creating a deck that can beat decks that are able to resist the first turns damage burst.
I’m not a professional player but I could manage to reach rank 10
playing with this deck for a couple days. I’m pretty sure a better
player can go much further.
I pretend to keep this deck updated while it’s still competitive in the meta. Comments and suggestions are always welcome.