How to beat Patron Warrior in Hearthstone: Counters, Tech Cards, and Tips
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If you've been on the Hearthstone ladder much over the past couple months, you're probably already tired of hearing that catchphrase. Grim Patron Warrior, a new deck made possible by the Blackwing Lair adventure, relies on the Grim Patron card, combining it with cards like Frothing Berserker, Warsong Commander, and Emperor Thaurissan to put together a very powerful board-clearing combo.
The deck is relatively inexpensive, powerful, and fun to play, earning it a spot at the top of the meta for several weeks now, and while it's not unbeatable, it's very strong and very common at the moment. If you're struggling to beat Patron Warriors or just tired of encountering the deck every other game, check out our list of counters, tech cards, and tips for playing around this meta deck.
Decks to Counter Patron Warrior
Among the other popular meta decks, there are few that can effectively counter Patron Warriors. Though several are even matchups, there are strong counters to Patron Warriors out there that still perform well on the ladder and can shut down any combo action before it starts.
Handlock beats Patron Warrior
Not as popular as they used to be, Handlock decks are still more than strong enough to compete on the ladder and are pretty much a hard counter to Patron Warriors. They run barely any creatures with less than three attack, denying Grim Patrons the chance to spawn new buddies, and protect the Warlock's face with lots of enormous taunts.
The deck also runs multiple high-damage board clears, so even if the warrior manages to assemble a board full of angry patrons, the Warlock can easily deal. As a bonus, Handlock performs pretty well against Face Hunters, another extremely popular meta deck.
- Molten Giant
- Mountain Giant
- Defender of Argus
- Twilight Drake
Ramp Druid beats Patron Warrior
Another old school deck that's still very strong in the right hands, Ramp Druid works on the same principle as Handlock: put out big taunts that stop the Patron Warrior from effectively executing his combo. Patron Warriors don't generally run a lot of removal beyond two Executes, so dropping an Ancient of War or a Druid of the Claw can be a big obstacle, especially if you manage to get them out early through Innervate or Wild Growth.
Plus, Ramp Druid's combo (Force of Nature + Savage Roar) comes online at about the same time as Patron Warrior's and can be even stronger. This is an expensive deck, but very ladder-worthy and extremely effective against Patron Warrior.
- Ancient of War
- Druid of the Claw
- Wild Growth
- Force of Nature
- Savage Roar
Sometimes the only way to counter aggression is with more aggression -- Face Hunter may not be well loved by Hearthstone players, but it doesn't really have any bad matchups and it can handle Patron Warriors on their own terms. There isn't anything especially strong about Face Hunters when it comes to beating Patron Warriors, but the deck is so aggressive and fast that you can often win the game before the Patron combo comes online.
The key here is aggression -- go hard for the face and don't stop for anything. If you haven't beaten the Warrior by turn eight, you're likely be in trouble, but you should have a pretty good chance of ending the match before it gets that far.
- Unleash the Hounds
- Quick Shot
- Arcane Golem
- Kill Command
Tech Cards to beat Grim Patrons
If you don't want to change your entire deck just to deal with Patron Warriors, there are plenty of Tech options that will improve your matchup significantly. Here are some cards that are easy to swap in that can make a big difference if used correctly.
Harrison Jones or Acidic Swamp Ooze
One of the key set pieces of the Grim Patron combo is Death's Bite, a weapon which gives the Warrior a way to spawn Patrons, buff their Frothing Berserker, and clear the way for the combo. If you can destroy the Death's Bite before its final attack, then you can put a serious dent in a Patron Warrior's ability to pull off their win condition, making both Harrison Jones and Acidic Swamp Ooze strong tech cards -- as a bonus, they can be helpful against all Hunters with Eaglehorn Bow as well.
Sludge Belcher or Sen'jin Shieldmasta
A great counter to Grim Patrons in general are cards with at least three attack and taunt, making Sludge Belcher and Sen'jin Shieldmasta good tech cards that make Patron Warriors work harder for their win. Be careful with Sludge Belcher, though, the slime is spawns can give them a way to spawn more patrons, so don't play this haphazardly.
Mind Control Tech
Playing Mind Control Tech is always a crap-shoot, but even if you're unlucky it will help even out the board -- if you're lucky though, and manage to snag a Frothing Berserker or Warsong Commander, then you can shut down a Patron Warrior hard.
Tips and Tricks for countering Patron Warriors
Even without designing a deck to beat Patron Warriors, there are a few things you can do to improve your win rate. Patron Warrior is strong, but challenging to play, so if you're smart and put pressure on your opponent, you may even be able to win an unfavorable matchup. Here are some things to keep in mind:
- Keep an eye on the board and your opponents hand, and make sure to familiarize yourself with the number of cards and the mana cost of big combo. Don't drop 1- or 2- attack minions when you know it's coming up.
- No matter what deck you're running, you need to play aggressively against Patron Warriors -- if you can force them to use combo pieces early, you weaken their late game threat.
- Save removal and AoE for when you absolutely need it. Hitting their Warsong Commander with a Frostbolt or a Quick Shot at the right time can put a stop to their win condition and buy you time.
- Play Patron Warrior yourself -- the best way to learn a deck (and learn how to counter it) is by playing it, and it will help you learn when the breakpoints are and how to play around their combo.