LOTI 010: Double Digits – Arena Strategies

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LOTI #010 – Legend of the Innkeeper – “Double Digits – Arena Strategies”


Welcome to the Legend of the Innkeeper.  I’m Vastidious and I’m Ariannwyn.  We’re glad you could join us for our tenth episode.

If you didn’t notice we have a new intro song thanks to a good friend of ours, James Marantette. We put out a call for some ideas and he came through as our hero!  We are also adding in some new features based off of feedback from listeners.  James Marantette – https://soundcloud.com/james-marantette

This week we are talking about…


What did you do this week?

Vastidious’ Hunter Deck:  Hunter Deck


1. Some details about the next expansion

In an interview with Senior Designer, Mike Donais, on the ValueTown podcast, he said that the next expansion is current in the works and actively being worked on.  The expansion is “…not exactly 100, but it’s a lot of cards”.


2. Icy Veins Interview – Deck Slots are mentioned


Q. Maybe more deck slots? Like when we design decks and we have to test them, we keep deleting and remaking decks.

A. Totally, especially people like you guys. You are absolutely a Power User. Whenever people ask me if they can have more than 9 deck slots, the question I ask them is whether or not they use more than 9 decks actively at the same time. Probably for you guys, the answer is yes, because you are trying out all this crazy stuff.

One example I like to bring up is that I grew up playing games like King’s Quest. If you grew up playing PC games, they let you have an infinite number of save files. When I finished King’s Quest, I ended up with 2500 savegames, even though I only really cared about 3 of them, which I do not even remember which they are among the 2500. So, that is an extreme, but there is that balance between 9, which I am not sure it is enough, but we currently feel it is, and infinite. For most readers, I would challenge them with his question: “Are you really using more than 9 decks actively? If not, delete the ones you are not using anymore, you would save yourself a lot of headaches in the future.“. But you know, for you guys and content creators, that is a pain, so maybe there is something we can do in the future. But let’s face it, you guys are like the elite or the top few percents.

Straw Poll has been created : http://strawpoll.me/2428746

And another straw poll: http://strawpoll.me/2429111

And a Petition:  https://www.change.org/p/blizzard-entertainment-add-more-deck-slots-to-hearthstone

3. Unofficial Poll of Players


Top 3 of the Week:  Naxxramas Cards

One of our listeners suggested we have a “top 3 of the week” segment

Vastidious – Undertaker, Webspinner and Baron Rivendare

Ariannwyn – Zombie Chow, Kel’Thuzad, Nerubian Egg

Getting Better


Roles in Arena reverse in an instant. You could be up in cards when your opponent plays an Azure Drake, a Sprint, or a Weapon and completely flip the roles. You could also be down in cards, only to eventually find out your opponent was holding only small minions, while you had big minions. Tempo shifts happen even more frequently.

Link to Beginner Arena Guide:


It’s a three step process:

1. Choosing a class

2. Drafting Cards

3. Understanding your deck

1. Choosing a Class

The first step when it comes to Arena is deciding which class to choose.  Personally in the past I’ve always chosen a class I felt most comfortable with.  I’ve had mixed results with that process.

As I’ve studied ways to improve my Arena game, one suggestion often given is to see what class it doing best in Arena now.  One way of doing this is by checking Hearthstats.net, where they keep a constant chart updated on how well each class is performing in Arena.  Currently the classes are as follows:

Rogue – 52.48%

Mage – 52.42%

Paladin – 51.43%

Shaman – 51.42%

Druid – 48.29%

Hunter – 48.18%

Warrior – 46.82%

Priest – 45.93%

Warlock – 45.59%

This isn’t a guarantee that you will win if you play a rogue, but it’s showing that more often the rogue is winning versus all the others.  If you have some decent skills, you have a good chance you will do well with any class.  But some classes have a better chance to do well.

The primary reasons is that both the Rogue and Mage have a very strong set of common or basic cards.  They are strong in removal cards and have efficient minions.  With removal cards there are a few different types.  Cards that clear the board, like Flamestrike or Consecration.  Cards that are good at removing individual cards, like Backstab and Lightning Bolt.  And cards that remove the effectiveness of a card, like Polymorph and Hex.

But which class should I pick?  If you are struggling to win in Arena, pick one of the top rated classes for now.  (Rogue or Mage).  Keep playing those until you get the process down and start doing well.

2. Drafting Cards

So the hard part is done now.  Next step is to start drafting cards.  This can be the most rewarding or frustrating part of the process.  I call it rewarding because you can get cards in your hand that you’ve never had a chance to play before, like Ragnaros.  However, knowing which card you should pick, is a difficult choice until you really understand what you are doing.

The good news is that there are a few tools you can use to improve your results dramatically.  We will talk about those in a moment.  One process I’ve been using is the following steps.

1. Use one of the two tools below and choose your first 10 cards, choosing the best card options.  

These tools are Trump’s Arena Spreadsheet and Arenavalue.com.  The problem with Trump’s Arena spreadsheet is that as far as I know it doesn’t have the Naxx cards on it yet.  At least it didn’t when I used it the other day.  Also I didn’t see a Hunter sheet.

2. Once you finish picking your 10th card, take a look at your deck so far.  Evaluate the choices and ask yourself the following questions.

a. What does the mana curve look like?  Mostly high cost minions?  Low cost?  A mix in between?

b. Do you have any removal cards?

c. Do you have any card draw?

d. Can you see a pattern with the cards?

Once you get a feel of what you have so far it will help you to move forward.  If you are light on card draw you might want to add a few.  If you don’t have any removal cards, you need to add some.  Is your mana curve low card heavy?  Then you might want to add some higher cost end-game cards.

3. Once you see your weaknesses, it’s time to see if you can shore them up.  Go ahead and take another 10 cards, keeping in mind what you discovered in the last step.  Once you have those in hand, re-evaluate your deck and see if you have any other areas that need fixing.

4. Continue picking your last 10 cards, being mindful of filling the gaps.

Once you have finished picking your deck, DON’T press the Play button!  Check out the next section before you do.

3. Understanding Your Deck

Until recently I’ve never done this.  And I realize now that I made many mistakes because of it.  Not knowing what you have in your deck and what to expect makes it hard to make decisions on which cards to play.

It’s a great idea to take a long look at the cards in your deck and get a feel for what cards are available.  Ask yourself a few questions.  Do I have a beginning game?  Do I have mid-game cards?  What about end game?  What removal cards do I have?  What will I win the game with?

Reminder to enter the Intel contest for a tablet pc.


Reviews and Emails

iTunes Reviews: No new reviews

Emails: None this week

Twitter: 51 followers

Comments on website:  Comment from Rorlins about building a deck to counter everything


That does it for this episode.  You can email the show at info@legendoftheinnkeeper.com.  You can also visit our website at legendoftheinnkeeper.com where we will post the show notes with the episode that has links to all the information we discussed.

Our YouTube channel is www.legendoftheinnkeeper.com/YouTube

You can follow the show on Twitter @LOTIpodcast

You can support the show through Patreon at :  www.patreon.com/Legendoftheinnkeeper

Be sure to subscribe and rate us on iTunes!

Until next show, Happy gaming!


Music by James Marantettehttps://soundcloud.com/james-marantette

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About Author

Vastidious is a long time gamer, father to Ariannwyn and doesn't read the text on the cards.


  1. I really liked your arena strategies discussion this week. I’m trying to get better in the arena and hopefully this will help. I’m enjoying your podcast. Keep up the good work!

  2. Lots of good stuff this week and a lot to build on.

    First, Ari, you don’t need to do Arenas to get dust. In fact if you’re not winning in the arena you’re better off NOT doing it and just getting the extra card packs. Lemme es’plain:

    Take a pool of 300 gold. That’s 3 packs of cards or 2 arena trips.

    Option 1: You take the three packs. That means you’ll get for your effort 15 randomly selected cards with 75% of them being commons, the rest being rares, epics or legendaries. Assuming you dust the ENTIRE last pack of cards you should get 20 dust for 4 commons and 20 for at least one rare (you may have more) for a net of 40 dust.

    Option 2: You do two arena runs. Now what you get on each depends on how you do, obviously, but let’s assume for the sake of argument you go three and out (worst case scenario). Either way you’ll get two packs (same as before) and two random rewards which could be 25-40 gold, 25-40 dust or a common card (worth 5 dust). So between the two runs you’re looking at 10 cards and (best case) 80 dust or worst case 10 (form dusting useless or repeat commons).

    Now that’s assuming three and out. Each win betters your odds obviously but there are a few other factors here:

    First, when you have 15 cards you increase drastically your chance to draw rares, epics and legendaries over simply opening 2 packs. Basically you’ve got 50% more chances at a high quality (and high dusting) card.

    Second you get those three packs the INSTANT you buy them. With the arena you have to complete two arena runs meaning you have to build your deck, consider your deck, play 3 (or more matches) and then repeat. Time is, as they say, the one resource that you only have in limited supply and can never be renewed.

    Now if you ~like~ playing arena decks, go for it. As you rack up the wins you watch as you get more and more stuff for it. However if you’re not getting wins, there is no real benefit to beating your head against that particular wall. You ~can~ of course, but is it really worth all the extra time for a limited benefit?


    Have fun!

    • What more can I say than, Wow, you really do like playing with the numbers don’t you? HaHa!

      I told Ariannwyn what you said and she was pretty excited. Not sure if that meant she wanted to just buy packs and give up or what. I’ll hold you responsible!

  3. First off, good podcast this week. I wanted to expand upon the concept about that hunter deck taking 100 wins to reach legendary. I think you mentioned that the guy who posted it must’ve lost about 30 times as well, making it 130 matchups. Close, however, here is the real scoop. As I’m sure you know, there are no bonus stars once you reach rank 5. That doesn’t sound like a big issue right, what’s a few bonus stars when you are so close anyway? The answer is it’s huge and reaching rank 5 isn’t really being close to legendary, heck it’s not even halfway, its more like just the beginning. Heartbreaking, but here’s why. You need to earn 5 stars for each rank 5-1. 25 stars total. However since you lose a star for each loss, you just basically need 25 more wins than losses. So, if that guy got legendary at 100 wins, it means he lost 75 times on the way there. That’s actually a 57% winrate, which I believe is considered excellent at that level. You may see people brag about win rates in the 60 or 70+ percent figures but I can assure you they aren’t being truthful or playing at any raking between 5 and legendary. I think for a good “netdeck” because people are playing direct counters at that level, a 55% winrate is about the best you can hope for and something like 52% is much more realistic (as seen on hearthstats). Is there really that big of a deal between 57% and 55%???? Well, to earn 25 stars at a 57% winrate you need 175 games as previously mentioned. At a 55% winrate (meaning per 100 matches you will win 55 and lose 45, that’s only a 10 star gain, i.e. “welcome to rank 3”) Its going to take 250 matches to net the 25 stars to legendary. If you can get in 10 matches per hour, that’s only 25 hours of playing time left to hit legendary …once you get to rank 5. Short games are a huge reason zoo is so popular to ladder with, you can image how long a warrior or priest run would take… Anyway, I think you’ve picked a good deck to make your run with. And I also think that if you make the right small innovations to it, bumping you just one step ahead of the meta is how you achieve that 55%+ winrate and get to legendary in a month. Best of luck!!!

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