Dragon Warrior is arguably the most hyped archetype in Rastakhan. With so many powerful synergies, it’s looking like a solid reason to experiment. But non-Baku Warriors aren’t too popular. Many pros and streamers claim that without an upgraded hero power, Warrior just can’t cut it. But can the power of Dragons let Warrior run even cost cards? Or is Tank Up! just too good?
One key factor in Odd’s favour is survivability. Tank Up! allows you to take the back seat in the early game where your tempo tools are weakest, and rely on powerful midgame clears like Brawl, Flurry, or Supercollider without risking running out of life. Odd Warrior’s hero power also allows it to devote a higher proportion of the deck to removal, without needing too many inefficient lifegain cards.
On the flipside, non-Odd Warriors must fight for the board earlier, but can do so more readily. With tools like Blood Razor and Warpath, they can pick apart boards earlier. In Dragon Warrior, this also means fighting directly for the board with Twilight Drake, Scaleworm, Firewood Witchdoctor and other synergistic minions. Overall, this means that non-Odd Dragon Warriors may struggle against more against burn decks, but be able to put more minions down early.
While Odd has more survivability, non-Odd Dragon Warriors have a ton more value potential. With Warmaster Voone and Dragon Roar, you can create massive hands of value to Boomship out. This is a big deal in a class that struggles with being competitive in the late-game. Shudderwock still needs time to set up its combo, and 3 massive Rush dragons for 9 mana does not give you much time.
But Odd can still gain some late-game punch from Dragons. Simply having tempo removal attached to a body is a big deal when it comes to closing out games. And while Odd won’t have the explosive Boomship finishes enabled by Voone and Roar, it can use its hero power to build greedier overall.
One advantage that may not be obvious is the versatility of non-odd decks. Odd decks by design must have a tightly synergistic and linear gameplan. This makes it hard to adapt to unfavourable matchups and changing metas. We saw this in the Boomsday meta, where Odd Warrior was strong early but slowly squeezed out by the likes of Druid, Shaman, and Hunter.
But this issue may be lessened for the upcoming meta. With access to the largest Standard pool ever, Odd can become flexible like never before. However, it will still undoubtedly lag behind non-Odd in terms of sheer variety of strategies and builds.
Let the Meta Decide
The answer to this dilemma should be clear. Let your own meta experiences shape your choice. If you want a reliable choice against burn-based aggro and combo decks, go with Odd. But if you’re struggling with combo decks and Druid, then consider the explosive value of the non-odd package. But overall, choose the deck that’s the most fun for you (if ‘fun’ can ever be applied to a Control Warrior deck).
Images courtesy of Blizzard Entertainment via hearthstone.gamepedia.com
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