*EDIT* Made changes for the Winter Championship. Added Shattered Hopes instead of Regent's Tomb for protection against against boardwipes. Took out Cleansing Rain, because I think its poorly positioned right now and added in another Cast Into Shadow and Amethyst Waystone. Put suffocates in instead of Desecrate to have good removal against aggressive decks. Vanquishers' Blades are in the two weapon slots now as well. *EDIT*
A paladin tribal list making heavy use of the decimate mechanic. I took this list to a 34-8 finish in the throne duel (11/15-11/17). It's an aggressive list and can often take the opponent from a high life total down to nothing out of nowhere. A lot of wins come from being able to set up those situations over the course of a few turns. Card break downs:
Anointer of the Faithful
, Hojan, Crownbreaker
, Crownwatch Paladin
, and Eloz's Elite
- The two drops. Anointer makes the deck work by putting weapons on your paladins, and bonding them out. The primary gameplan is to dump your hand as quick as possible and start bashing, so this card is essential as a four-of. Hojan is of course nuts, so I'm playing the full four of him too. He's especially good for bonding when Anointer is out, because he'll get his renown bonus immediately, often going up to 7 power, letting you get Soulflame rider or Nivia out early. Eloz's Elite is good, but it's not especially aggressive, nor is it good in multiples. That's why I'm only playing two. Crownwatch paladin is the next best paladin, so she fills out the curve as another two-of.
Nivia, Most Devoted
, Nivia's Inquisitor
, Soulflame Rider
, and Verro, Banished Inquisitor
- The decimate payoffs. These cards can get scary very quickly. Nivia's Inquisitor will often get mastery in a game, but Nivia's mastery is more rare. One of the great things about those two is that many of our decimate cards are fast, so their pump effects can work as combat tricks making them difficult to block correctly. Soulflame rider comes down as an already strong card that is difficult to deal with. One thing that comes up rarely is leaving the rider at 3 cost, so it is immune to defiance. Verro can help get kills out of nowhere with draw strength, or reconnaissance out of the market. I often choose to give him bond with anointer, because you'll want to play him after your big creatures anyway.
, Cast into Shadow
, and Cleansing Rain
- These, along with the emblems, are the decimate cards. Draw strength is one of the most efficient, and it synergizes with Hojan, so I'm playing four. Cast into Shadow can be bad sometimes, so I've split it with two desecrates. Cleansing Rain can also be bad, but I think it's the best additional decimate card to include, and we need to have enough of them. It's primary purpose is protection against board wipes, but it can also destroy the occasional permafrost or avigraft. I prefer having this in the maindeck as opposed to the market, because I often won't have the seven power to play both in the same turn. If I have time to do it over multiple turns, tomb is just better.
- Additional cards - Shake down is important for protecting a turn two anointer or Hojan. They can end up being bad later in the game, so I'm only playing three. It's nice that it creates nightfall, because the deck is built on synergies. The extra card will often help us more than the opponent. Inquisitor's blade gives evasion and can trigger Hojan. It goes very well with berserk from Verro, and it keeps coming back so that you aren't entirely blown out by going all in on one unit.
, and Regent's Tomb
- The market - It's good to include a power card both for Hojan and because it helps us decimate more. Cabal standard is my choice because it is still good when flooding. Suffocate is an efficient removal spell. I like it only costing one, because decimate will often keep me from going above four power. Reconnaissance can win the game, and is great with Verro. It even triggers decimate, which can help pump units for a lethal attack. Immortalize is probably the card I get least. It's great for getting back a bonded unit though. Regent's tomb is there for another option in the market to try to beat sweepers.
Notable missing cards -
Copperhall minotaur - I had him in the original list, but cut him for two reasons. I found that my hand was too often glutted with four drops, so I couldn't do anything until later in the game. He also requires lots of justice sigils, especially alongside Hojan. I wanted to be playing more shadow sigils to increase the odds of a turn one discard spell, so I cut him. This also let me play fewer weapons, since I didn't need them for synergies anymore.
Sabotage - I had this in the original list as well, because I wanted to protect my two drops from removal and to protect my board from sweepers. I found that it missed too often, so I replaced it with shakedown.
Amethyst Waystone - This card should probably be included. Make sure to include at least one or two shadow sigils for ice bolt.