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Skycrag Aggro: Hailstorm was a Buff Edition

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My version of Skycrag Aggro. Not many different ways to build this one, but I hope this version is considered more innovative in the card choices. It's sort of a Light Yeti deck, with features that do support Yeti tribal but it doesn't overbuild on it.

"Obvious" core:
Oni Ronin for best Turn 1, Permafrost to get rid of most attackers (save this if vs. Rakano), Pyroknight for fourth best Turn 1 and pressure if the deck goes midrange, Snowcrust Yeti for second best Turn 1, Torch for unknown reasons scientists are still trying to figure out, Champion of Fury for being one of the only multifaction cards, Cinder Yeti for cheeky Warps.

Eilyn's Intervention: This card is nothing short of hilarious now. People were already somewhat impressed with this card in the discussion for this card before Dead Reckoning.

Aegis is kind of a misnomer for Skycrag's better control matchup (it's really only a trait of Skycrag due to Snowcrust Yeti and less so Vadius, Clan Father). This is the true reason.

Deal 3 damage to an enemy unit with Flying.
Rakano was one of the deck's more annoying Aggro matchups due to lifesteal and using Valkyrie Enforcer or Deepforged Plate to crap all over Permafrost. Admittedly, this effect happens to really only help vs. Justice, which is on the downturn, but basically it hits Valkyrie Enforcer and Unseen Commando, the latter likely being the much more annoying unit for a vs. Aggro matchup.

Also, this indirectly craps on some of the more experimental matchups that use Scorpion Wasp in unitless to counter Icaria.

Negate a 3-cost enemy spell.



Now, what's that number at the top left? (insert sound of feln control surrendering here)

I have no idea why this isn't in the maindeck for Skycrag Aggro. Out of all the decks listed on this site, a large portion are overly focused on Yeti tribal. In fact, the only deck that seems to be "light Yeti" is this one!

This deck used to be a Yeti tribal deck as well with a midrange curve (and even Cobalt Waystone), but outside Snowcrust Yeti and Champion of Fury, there's not much else going for the Yeti tribe in terms of Aggro. I think a full Yeti tribal deck is probably a mistake.

It's funny that this mode was considered "very narrow" then. Here are some other spells you may want to think about negating:
• • Slay, Banish, Eilyn's Choice
Very much overkill for the kind of units this deck plays. Negating keeps the tempo up. Don't negate if they're JPS unitless for Slay, since they have Primal.
• • Devastating Setback
This, like 100% of other Skycrag Aggro, does not play anything above 2♥. People could go back to Lightning Storm to counter it, but expect a shift to Rakano if that actually happens due to its use of 3♥ units. Hence Devastating Setback is used, which is used in JPS and likely any other unitless with a Shadow in it, and conveniently also costs 3.
• • Wisdom of the Elders
Not impressive again. They're probably not playing Aggro if they play this and they're skipping a turn. I'd still not negate this usually, since unless they're obviously fishing for answers at like, 4 power vs lethal, this could be your opponent trying to fish out an overextension and they already have Hailstorm.
• • Assembly Line
• • Plague, Scheme
Nobody plays those cards.
• • Cabal Extortion Scheme
You've probably already lost.

Here are the rest of the 3-cost spells, though they're really obvious whether to negate or not.

Your Yeti get +3♥ this turn.
Ignore what I said about the reason this card only seems to see play in Yeti tribal decks. This line of text is the reason. Intervention tribals seem to be more of a trap than anything in general, with Yeti tribal especially (most of its synergies are given to crappy draft cards).

Again, I doubt that Yeti tribal will work in Aggro at all, so this effect is not going to help vs. Lightning Storm. (In fact, this deck doesn't even play enough Yeti to act anything like a Bolster!)

Just treat this like a Weather the Storm for Yeti. I guess this is also a reason to put weapons on say, Snowcrust Yeti, rather than say Vadius, just to fight double Torch :p

EDIT: If you want to empty your hand due to Praxis Outlaw, note you cannot do this if there are no other targets AND also no other Yeti on the board.

Grenadin Drone: This thing is kind of boring. Ornate Katana is nice for a free threatening 3/1, but the split over the bodies is not much of an upside for this deck, which is why it's not a 4-of.

Snow Pelting: Actually a lot worse than it looks on first glance, since each target can only take a maximum of 2 damage from a single cast. It's almost Torch though, and it's good against other Aggro / go-wide spam. The best use of this card is on a recent summon, of course; such as playing Snowcrust Yeti + Snow Pelting at 4 power.

Ornate Katana: Great in Aggro! It's like a Charge 2/1 (Blazing Renegade?) without a card advantage loss. Also provides reach. This is funny because if you draw it late, ordinarily midrange-like decks would be screwed, but since you're Aggro you were probably screwed anyway. A hand filled with these may still be an issue, however.

Rakano Outlaw: This is not nearly as good since we're trying to push some mild Yeti tribal. Getting early Warcry is good, though.

Tripwire Grenadin: This techs against common "annoyers" in both aggro and control matchups. Targets you like to see are Oni Ronin, Grenadin Drone, Temple Scribe, and Amber Acolyte. It can also be used to remove an enemy's "face" Aegis on their avatar. Completely replaces Rockslide which is just inefficient.

Also, if this is the only card on the board and it is killed by an Auric Runehammer, you will be forced to hit yourself for 1.

Yeti Windflyer: Honestly, still not sure about this. It appeared in the only other "light Yeti Skycrag" deck I linked, and I was actually quite interested. It increases our Yeti proportion and the flying is very very relevant, and its stats aren't far from Rakano Outlaw. But there's not enough Yeti in the deck to actually get the +1/+1 off all the time. Thankfully, the meta doesn't show Sandstorm Titan too often.

Power Base:

Okay, just kidding. Elephant in the room first:

Praxis Outlaw: Yes. I am seriously playing this card. Come on guys, you can't crap on it for having a "bad" statline while you put Vadius on a pedestal. Frankly, Skycrag's unit stats are pretty bad outside the "core units". It's not even something you should be mad to play without the passive draw, since it baits removal.

Other potential 3 drops, perhaps: Clan Hero, Cobalt Acolyte, Wisdom of the Elders, Censari Brigand

Power Base:

No Crests nor Monuments nor Waystones - at most one Crest. Depleted is very bad for aggro, and adding all that crap is not going to help. Not much Diplomatic to allow for seats and to prevent stupid 2/1 influence splits with a Diplomatic in hand. Don't mix Common Cause up with Diplomatic Seal.

Unlike other decks (and even other Aggro decks), you are quite happy to play a 2 power hand, instead of being like "I can't play this Obliterate!". Be intelligent with your power, but you can be lenient as you have all the influence you need at FFPP.

Yeti = Yeti is not the only tribal relation in this deck that benefits from Common Cause. Grenadin Drone = Tripwire Grenadin, and Champion of Fury = Pyroknight. For cards this deck doesn't use, Rakano Outlaw = Vadius, Clan Father, and the Warrior type (shared by Pyroknight and Champion of Fury) is also used by Clan Hero.

Cards that are not in the deck (that probably see play in other Skycrag Aggro), and why:

The other 1 and 2 cost Yeti cards: Bad.

Crafty Yeti: Praxis Outlaw but worse somehow.

Pummel: This is not a very impressive card for our units. Note that +2 attack for the units here can't even break apart a 5 health unit (Feln Bloodcaster, Combrei Healer, Sandstorm Titan. The units you use Pummel on will also probably still die. It's still worth noting though, because it does scout away power and represents damage in hand that goes past face aegis.

Levitate and Strategize: We can't really deal with "card ambiguity" - though, throwing power away with Strategize is quite efficient for this deck. It is not strictly upside to say you have +1 card advantage after using these types of cantrips/draw cards, because you have -1 card advantage whilst they are unplayed.

Unseal, Backlash and Kaleb's Choice: This is going to matter in very few situations. Unseal and Kaleb's Choice especially - the mirror match doesn't come THAT often where you wish you had this versus Permafrost.
EDIT: I'm not sure about this actually - I use one of in the sideboard. There are important spells, and I think Backlash is the best one here (for the 2 damage effect). It counters Harsh Rule and Hailstorm all the same and is a proactive way to spend your late turns. The downside is that it slows your Praxis Outlaw chain (you could still probably find a spell to use it on though).

Rockslide: We have Tripwire Grenadin.

Fearless Yeti: This was a hard cut. It's not even that bad. It's hard to resist Rakano Outlaw though. If there was a mistake in the deck, I'd say this might be it, since it is now certainly a deck that benefits from more tribal. But even in this deck, Warcry and Quickdraw are much more valuable than Scout and Overwhelm.

Iceberg Mason: Here's a better idea: Play Fearless Yeti, and put the power card you scouted to the bottom. Each Yeti in your deck is now one closer to the top. Or play a Crest. Point is, this card is very stupid.

Shogun's Scepter: There are a few problems I have with this which is why it's not in the deck. That 1 health is not going to matter - getting the 100% predictable Oni Ronin instead of a card loses your outs - having 8 instead of 4 weapons increases the weapon flood chance - double fire influence. It's not that bad of a card, but it is somewhat sketchy to me.

Ruincrawler Yeti: Not enough attachments to kill.

Cloudsnake Harrier: This card is actually pretty decent, but I don't want to get stuck on 2 Primal, especially since you want to prioritize 2 Fire for Charge Champion of Fury. DIY Hailstorm with this and Snow Pelting.

Vadius, Clan Father: This looks overhyped to me. I crafted a single copy for this deck and I was thoroughly unimpressed when it came up. It's not Yeti, and its attack is still low, and playing it has no board impact. This and Ornate Katana will still suicide into a Sandstorm Titan. It takes Warcry buffs well? I have no idea. I don't recommend including even one. Also, you'll never Pay 7 with how this deck runs. At least it's FFP instead of FPP.

Any card 4 cost and above: It eats a Vanquish and locks your tempo. Too bad Cobalt Waystone is a thing now. Groundbreaker is too influence heavy. Also compare Mortar and Obliterate to Torch.

JPS unitless, Blue Armory, AND Feln Control which are all popular in the meta right now run Hailstorm. This should be favored for you.

Praxis Dawnwalker is okay. Hope they didn't draw their Titan (if they do, throw any combination of removal at it). This is probably slightly favored for the Dawnwalker deck. There's also one using Shepherd's Horn - this is quite annoying due to the healing, but at least they might drop their Titan last because they have higher cost cards to drop? I expect that Skycrag Aggro's matchup just entirely drops off like a rock playing vs this, but at least Polymorph exists.

Mirror aggro vs. Skycrag and Stonescar should use Snow Pelting and Tripwire Grenadin to break any stalls. The Rakano matchup is harder - don't use Permafrost early and match your Eilyn's Intervention up with their flying units. If they Harsh Rule, it's probably over.

Sideboard Adds:
We can use Fearless Yeti but this is more if Yeti tribal gets more support.
More Tripwire Grenadin for the Skycrag and Stonescar aggro matchups.
Powderglider is usually very bad to draw, but some flying units such as Shelterwing Rider that would ordinarily lock up the board can be bypassed.
Crest of Fury to cycle out power at risk of early Depleted draw.
Vadius, Clan Father if you think I'm dumb for not having this. But I expect most players are on a budget, and Vadius is really only usable for Skycrag. The bigger issue with Vadius is that since he is a 3-drop, he clogs hands too.
Polymorph if the deck is fighting too many fat units. Be warned though, this card is very much useless vs a large portion of matchups such as the mirror, other aggro decks, and unitless. Maybe this is better with Tripwire Grenadin?
Steelfang Chakram: Currently a card I'm experimenting with - an article was made on this one before (link here). It's actually an expensive card I'd be happy to splash into the deck, since it's recurring, comes after Valkyrie Enforcer and you'll always have a creature to use it on (Praxis Outlaw). But again, do not run too many or you may get weapons flood.
Granite Monument: Another one which I'm not experimenting on, but I'm looking at. Of course, depleted power is still horrible for this 3-cap aggro deck, and maybe it will ruin a Pyroknight activation. However, shooting surprise damage is a big strength for Skycrag in particular, and this definitely helps there.

Sideboard Removals:
Consider removing Grenadin Drone for non-mirror matchups.
There may or may not be better 3-drops to take Praxis Outlaw's place in the future.

Some strategy:
T1 on the play or draw: Oni Ronin > Snowcrust Yeti > Grenadin Drone > Pyroknight.
T1 only if on draw and your opponent signals Shadow: Snowcrust Yeti > Grenadin Drone > Oni Ronin > Pyroknight
This is to prevent an early Vara's Favor being used on one of your premium survival 1-drops.
T2: Champion of Fury, but if your opponent is holding up Fire with power, play two 1-drops. Failing that, use one of the "worse" 2-drops: Rakano Outlaw or Yeti Windflyer. Alternatively, you may equip a Grenadin Drone with an Ornate Katana, which is a pretty nice play, as it splits the main attacking force into something without passive utility (like Oni Ronin).
T3: Praxis Outlaw if your opponent still signals removal, or a combination of lower cost units if they don't. Note that combinations of lower cost units have much higher combined attack than a single 3-cost unit.

When picking influence, go for first F -> FP -> FFP -> FFPP. All this deck needs is FFPP to activate all of Champion of Fury's costs, with the Charge being particularly imporant.

At this point there will probably be some resistance. Be careful - even if Cinder Yeti is on the top of your deck, if you have Permafrost at this point, it is more efficient to just use that, as it is not a temporary solution like Cinder Yeti is.

Make sure to keep reach (such as Torch) intelligently - this deck can hold lots of surprise damage in spells, Champion of Fury, and Ornate Katana. Especially beware of cards such as Cobalt Waystone blocking direct damage.


Shiftstone Cost
Does not include campaign cost

Premium Cost

Influence Requirements
1 1

Power Sources
15 14 8 4

Power Calculator
Shiftstoned Icon View Deck on Shiftstoned

Deck Rarities
20 30 12

Card Types
30 8 12 0 25

Contains Cards From Campaigns
Jekk's Bounty [Set1001]
The Tale of Horus Traver [Set1002]
Dead Reckoning [Set1003]


March 29, 2018

March 24, 2018


Eternal Version
Dead Reckoning

BBCode For Comments

Deck URL

Revisions (Since last major patch) March 24, 2018



Prometheus Eternal Version: 1.31.6
My attempt at this:
maingi Eternal Version: 1.31.6
Is the deck linked to private? Can't see it right now!

Also now I recognize your name from some of the Master rank games, though my decklist has changed to an alternative one since. It still runs no Vadius :P
Prometheus Eternal Version: 1.31.6
It's unlisted now
Prometheus Eternal Version: 1.31
I've been iterating on Skycrag myself and have used your prototype as inspiration.

Here are the changes I have made so far:

I cut out Praxis Outaw, while I agree with you that Vadius is too slow for how quick aggro has to act in the new hailstorm and sandstorm environment, I genuinely believe that Outlaw looks better on paper than he actually is in practice. It's a neat party trick to enter your hand only to have a 3/1 ready at the beginning of the next turn but he will rarely connect unless your opponent is also topdecking. This is essentially a meme card and not worth the slot.

I removed Yeti Windflyer because in my experience this card is extremely lackluster. Technically a 2/2 Flying isn't awful but how often will you land that? Not a good unit unless you are going full Yeti Tribal in my opinion. Fearless Yeti is a superior 2 drop. Scout does matter and the Overwhelm combines with Katana and Warcries.

I think you need to run Polymorph as a standard pick, not just in the sideboard. Time decks are rampaging through the meta and Sandstorm Titan is ubiquitous. Your deck essentially loses the game at that point because you have no response to it. As clunky as Vadius may be, he offers Skycraggro a way to overcome Titan and other fatties via Quickdraw fueled by Morningstar or Warcry.

Grenadin Drone shouldn't be a staple in aggro decks that aren't Stonescar imo. If you insist on two more 1 drops, I would recommend Iceberg Frontrunner. It seems bad but it has Charge and can fly of the bench and it does allow you to use Katana more consistently. I'm not sure about this slot and whether it should be cut or not.
maingi Eternal Version: 1.31
Mm... I wouldn't call it a prototype. It's a deck I'm ranking with. I am however interested in other ways people take Skycrag.

Lots of people thought Praxis Outlaw was worse on paper. The thing is that the deck is not trying to curve like a lot of other aggro decks - instead of 1 drop -> 2 drop -> 3 drop, it's 1 drop -> 1 and a 1 drop -> 1 and a 2 drop, or even three 1-drops, because multiple 1-drops deal more damage than the "on curve" option. As a result, the goal is to empty your hand fast. Having a reward at the end is even better.

I think the card may have its issues too (but also: Tinker Overseer is better in almost every way) but it's more like the 3/1 brickwalls a lot and Warcry > Scout. Though having a 3 attack creature is nice in terms of "activating" Pummel.

Polymorph's problem is that it's a huge win-less. If you're not playing versus Time (and you're playing vs unitless, armory, aggro) the card is useless. If I were to run it I'd either not play a Skycraggro deck or play a lot more ping cards (like Tripwire Grenadin and even considering Rockslide. But I personally have seen less Time in the meta right now, so I don't run it. Actually in this case I might actually consider Hoof Slash instead because most of our units at 2 attack + 4 attack = 6 attack, actually killing Titan and not leaving a 1/1 behind, but it's still going to suck most of the time.

I'll admit that the use of Grenadin Drone is sort of confused goals, because it helps with running out your cards but it doesn't "do" anything besides be a 1 cost "2/2". It's nice to catch someone trade off a Temple Scribe for one, but helps a lot less with the other goals of the deck. Iceberg Frontrunner has actually improved in perception for me... but actually more in a Charge Rod deck. May as well cut it, though I guess it happens to be a nice Warcry target, which is nice.

Thanks for your comment.
Prometheus Edited Eternal Version: 1.31
Polymorph was an example, but I think cards like Rampage, Hoof Slash, or even Pummel are better cards for the deck. In combination with Warcry, Torch, or Katana'd units you can kill big blockers.

Still not convinced by Praxis Outlaw, I run Censaris and prefer them so much more. They also mesh beautifully with the unit buff spells above. Worth a thought!
MSilenus Eternal Version: 1.29
I've just made an account to tell you how much I like this deck. So far, it's winning most of my games in gold. Let's see if it can take me to diamond. I particular liked how cheap it is, so it's the ideal budget deck for a beginner such as myself.

I've only lost to decks running either Sabotage or Harsh Rule. My opponent got extremely lucky making me discard Eilyn's Intervention twice before playing Hailstorm. Against Harsh Rule, I usually cannot output enough damage before their T5, and then they stabilize and I just lose.
maingi Eternal Version: 1.29
This deck took me from a ton of not really knowing what to do (and frustration playing control decks) from Diamond 1 to Master. I hope others get the same success.

I'd suggest using Backlash which is in the sideboard if there are too many control decks. I should update my description there, actually. Only a one-of as far as I'm concerned, since you never want to hold two. I suggest Backlash instead of Unseal since the mirror (or Permafrost) doesn't come up often enough, at least for now, and the 2 damage is very relevant for aggro.

Of course, there's still Vadius, Clan Father which other decks run, but I still find it shaky.
DoubleFat Eternal Version: 1.29
Good list, Eilyn's Intervention really is a game changer for Skycrag. I just replaced 2 snow pelting by Vadius just because I didn't have the cards. It got me from D1 to Master after I've tried with a lot of other subpar decks. Also I did not expect Praxis Outlaw to be that usefull but it definitely was !
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maingi Edited Eternal Version: 1.29
Glad to help, it actually comes up a lot more than you think in hyper-aggro since there are a lot of situations where you'd rather play two 1-drops instead of one 2-drop, emptying your hand quite quickly. I should add a section of the guide just for other interactions with Eilyn's Intervention that I missed, like how you can't empty your hand with Eilyn's Intervention to get a Praxis Outlaw if you don't have any Yeti or other targets on the field. Thanks.

Edit: Network errors for some reason, this post tripleposted. I deleted two.
serialsavage Eternal Version: 1.29
nice guide
maingi Eternal Version: 1.29
Thank you!