For those of you without Armageddon, Extinction, etc. this page is meant to help guide you towards the best 40 card Wizard deck that can be easily made. If you want to see a Very Rare Wizard Deck then click here: TuffHunter's Wizard
If you are not interested in a commentary I will outline a 40 card deck without Very Rares or expensive Rares. (While not as powerful, this Wizard deck does incorporate some life gain as well as attack prevention)
- 4 Bad Luck
Now back to the Guide!
So you said 40 cards, but can't I have up to 60?
Yes you certainly can. However the goal of Wizard is to kill your opponent as quickly as possible. The best way to go about this is rather than having a card for every possible situation, simply use only your best and most easily usable cards. Don't try to stall your opponent or worry about having a counter for every possible card. Thats what your sidedeck is for (in tournaments) and if you really want to be that powerful, you will need Very Rare cards in order to truly wreck everything in your path.
So what cards to consider?
Lets break it down into the following categories: Weapons, Strike Spells & Utility Cards with tiers to differentiate overall power and usefulness.
When it comes to weapons in a 40 card deck, I generally recommend anywhere from 10-12 depending on your needs and play style (I currently run 10, but also have 2 Artifacts and 4 Usage Spells to use on the equip phase). What makes Wizard so powerful is not just its Strike Spells but also attacking with some of the stronger weapons in this game. Not all Wizard weapons will be listed here, just the most impactful. Obviously some weapons are harder to find or are more expensive than others, but these are the best weapons to strive for:
Top Tier: (The best but the most expensive weapons to obtain)
- Pentacle Wand: This 6/1 beast's damage speaks for itself and as a blocker it can destroy nearly any weapon. Just don't try to use it with cards that lower your weapon.
- Cursed Scepter: While it is 2 power weaker than Pentacle Wand it does have a 2nd attack count allowing for more sustained damage. Just be aware of the random discard upon destruction.
- Crystal Sword: Instant 4 damage from your equip phase. But due to its lifepoint requirement it isn't wise to run 4 of them. (I generally use 2)
- Prismatic Wand: By itself the wand has no power, but used with the proper spell it can easily deal 4-6 damage (or at least a consistent 3). The downside however is that if your opponent is crafty enough to damage themselves before their turn ends, then they can reduce the power of your wand with cards like Relinquish Mail, Earthquake, etc. (Or simple reduce damage with a Defense card)
Middle Tier: (These weapons are generally cheaper and easier to obtain. They are still quite viable and you may see them in highly rated Wizard decks)
- Phantom Sword: This 2/3 sword can only attack twice, but has fast strike AND is unblockable on the turn you play it. It is very nice in combination with cards that prevent your opponent from attacking.
- Tempest Wand: Just a 2/1 at first but can easily power up to 4-6 after a few turns.
- Gloom Scepter: While it does require Bag of Dreams this impressive 5 power wand can return to your hand thus making it an amazing blocker.
- Orange Gem Wand: The only 2 handed wand in Wizard's arsensal. However its main benefit is that it has 2 resistance which makes it that much harder for your opponent to destroy.
- Blue Gem Wand: This wand benefitted from a recent buff that raised its power to 3. While it cannot be used as a blocker, it does have a bentiful 3 attack counts.
- Black Gem Wand: Unlike Blue Gem Wand it can block, but you do receive 1 damage upon equipping it. It also has 3 attack counts and the added bonus of Conjoined which is nice when playing multiple classes, fighting against lockout,or using Extinction.
- Meteor Wand: While this wand only has 2 attack power it does however raise if your opponent does not block, thus allowing for you to attack and block with the same weapon. Furthermore if the weapon is not blocked, your Nature Spells deal gain +1 damage until the end of your turn.
Lower Tier: (While these cards are not useless they certainly have more powerful and useful counterparts)
- Red Gem Wand: A 3 power ranged weapon isn't awful, but the above weapons generally have an advantage over this.
- Oblivion Scepter: Generally like Red Gem Wand but has the extra bonus of gaining 1 power whenever someone (anyone) discards a card. This is a great wand for discard decks or a nice consideration for decks using Madness. However you must also discard a card upon equip which can really lead to a thin hand.
- Violet Gem Wand: Why is an unblockable 3 power ranged weapon with a whopping 3 attack counts in the lower tier?!? Because it deals 2 damage to yourself upon equip, thats why.
- Seomani Wand: Only has 2 power but has 2 resistance like Orange Gem Wand to help against pesky cards like Djinn's Faith, Melee, etc. It does have the added bonus of being Spectral to help with armors, but generally Wizard can plow through armors.
- Skull Wand: While this is a 4 power wand it sadly only has 1 attack count.
- Sword of Sacrifice: A 4/4 sword seems powerful for a Wizard but sadly you cannot use a Strike Spell on the same turn you attack.
Just like the Weapons these will be broken up into tiers. Some such as the Very Rares are obviously the most powerful, there are some Uncommons and even Commons that no Wizard deck should be without!
Top Tier: (The best but the most expensive to obtain)
- Armageddon: By itself it is the most damaging Strike (6 damage) in the game. It is also one of the more valuable Very Rare cards.
- Summon Chimera: By itself this actually does 0 damage. However combined with Soulbound it can deal up to 24 damage!
- Chain Lightning: Only deals 3 damage but pulls another Chain Lightning from your deck into your, thus acting as a pseudo-card draw.
- Extinction: Wipes the board clean. Good luck trying to go card for card with a Wizard after he uses this.
- Howl of Terror: Just 3 damage and it is only a Common, but considering it is Uncounterable it is a must have for any solo Wizard.
Middle Tier: (Many of these still belong in a top deck but pale in comparison to the Top Tier)
- Apocalypse: Another whopping 6 damage Strike card. However since it requires you to be at 8 life points or less, it isn't wise to run more than 2 (I run just 1).
- Earthquake: While it does deal 2 damage to yourself, it is a 5 damage card with no requirement to cast and it doesn't discard any of your cards like Armageddon, Rockslide or Tsunami.
- Life Drain: A bad card to use first turn as the life gain effect is wasted. Otherwise is has become a staple of Wizard as the life gain can easily be just enough to keep you alive for another turn.
- Summon Gravekeeper: A 5 damage Strike that doesn't discard a card or deal damage to yourself. However due to the fact that you need to have 7 card in your discard to even cast it, I do not recommend running 4 as a starting hand of these is a dead hand. (I msyelf only run 1)
- Poisonous Fog: I personally like this more than the below Summon Bats. While it does deal 1 damage to yourself, 3 poison damage can be hard to get rid of (Poison cannot be reduced, only cured) while the 2 from Summon Bats can simply be reduced.
- Summon Bats: Unlike the above Poisonous Fog this card can kill the enemy once cast, where as with fog you need to wait for the end of your opponent's turn for the poison damage to take effect. Also it's Nature element can be boosted by Meteor Wand.
- Rockslide: Another 5 damage strike but if you draw this late it is useless due to you needing to be at 12 life or MORE. The discard of your choice can be a major benefit if you happen to have a Wrath of Marcos as it will deal 7 total damage.
- Tsunami: 5 damage and a little easier to use than Rockslide as you simply need to be at a lower life point total than your opponent. The discard of your choice can be a major benefit if you happen to have a Wrath of Marcos as it will deal 7 total damage.
Lower Tier: (These are not necessarily useless, but many of them are either hard to use, have large downsides or are for specific situations)
- Fire Ball / Tremor: A nice low rarity as a 4 damage is nothing to sniff at. When Very Rares are not available these are a fine substitute.
- Meteor Storm / Weakness: While direct damage has its uses, I personally find that Wizard has very little trouble quickly blowing its way through armors.
- Avalanche: Deals 4 damage but requires you to have a raised weapon in play and thus lower it. Nice with Meteor Wand (as it is a Nature spell) but awful with Pentacle Wand.
- Bipolarity: Double Spell & Retract are the real upside to this. Combined with the fact that it gives your Bag of Dreams staying power you can really dish out the damage with Gloom Scepter & Shockwave.
- Dark Matter: 4 damage is always nice but it is only usable with Dark Wands and considering it lowers your wand, this cannot be easily used with Pentacle Wand. The discard as usual is a double edge sword.
- Spirit Blast: Combined with a wand such as the Tempest Wand this can easily be yet another 6 damage Strike Spell.
- Shockwave: While it does require a Bag of Dreams this 5 damage Strike Spell not only deals Direct damage but also prevents your opponent from changing classes next turn.
- Extraction: Filling your deck with too many Life Point requirement cards can be an issue, but this is a 5 damage spell. Combined with Nightmare Bag it can deal 6 damage but remember you are giving your opponent a free card.
- Purge: For a solo Wizard I find that Howl of Terror is generally better. The Direct damage does have its uses however.
- Summon Timetripper: Another 5 damage Strike Spell however this one has a dual requirement of having fewer lifepoints AND cards in hand than your opponent.
- Smog: Only 2 damage but with Retract you can use it over and over again.
- Suppress Soul: Deals 4 Direct damage but requires you to be at 12 lifepoints or fewer.
This section will focus on a mix of cards; Trinkets, Artifacts & Spells (and even Abilities) that provide support for your very damaging Weapons & Strike Spells. When trying to consider how many Utility cards you need, consider the Phases you are using. Madness helps to use the Equip Phase effectively while Paralysis can be used on your opponent's turn, particularly on their Equip Phase.
Top Tier: (These are the most common and most impactful Wizard Utility cards. Expect to face and be annoyed by them often.)
- Madness: While it can only be used on the Equip Phase this Usage Spell not only discards a random card from your opponent's hand, but draws another copy of itself from your deck into your hand. Like Chain Lightning it is a pseudo-draw card for Wizard.
- Soulbound Phylactery: Not only is it an amazing damage booster for Earthquake, Summon Chimera, etc. but it scares your opponent's into skipping a a turn for fear of damaging themselves. Also since Poison damage is dealt at the end of a turn, it is amazing to play once poisoned.
- Wrath of Marcos: While just a 2 direct damage strike spell is nothing to be amazed by, the fact that it can be Transmuted to deal 2 damage when it is discarded (usually by a Strike Spell) makes it an amazing source of unpreventable damage.
- Amulet of Deceit: This uncommon which was once nerfed still has amazing potential. Not only does Wizard deal tremendous damage but it allows you to get the jump on your opponent and with the right cards can allow for a 2-3 turn kill. Even in the long run revealing your opponent's hand is an underappreciated bonus.
- Nightmare Bag: Originally I was going to place this in the Middle Tier, but after consideration it without a doubt at least belongs in EVERY Wizard's Sidedeck in order to combat Sorcerers so I decided to elevate it slightly. This can also be useful versus annoying Monk or Redemption decks.
Middle Tier: (These cards while powerful and useful are generally seen in themed decks with a more specific focus)
- Orb of Benediction: At the cost of life points you can easily empty your opponent's entire hand especially when combined with Madness & Bad Luck.
- Bad Luck: While it does not have the deck thinning component of Madness this card is an interesting surprise defense that can ruin your opponent's combos.
- Paralysis: Nothing like creating an opening for your Pentacle Wand.
- Flamelink: Not only does this card deal 1 damage to ONLY your opponent's items (not all items like Acid Rain) but it removes any rebuild effects from them thus permanently destroying cards like Calico's Blood or preventing the re-use of cards like Ashborn Chestplate.
- Ghurnoth's Wisdom: While the nerf of removing Multiphase hurt the effectiveness of this card, it is still a valuable tool for drawing cards as well as discarding your opponent's.
Lower Tier: (These are still useful but get very specific in terms of deck or are sidedeck only cards)
- High Arcana Sigil: Strictly for decks running ONLY Dark Strike Spells but gives Wizard scary durability via offense. For an example view this replay: http://ederon.com/replay/?21271
- Jack-O-Lantern: In a Wizard/Sorcerer deck this would be in the Top Tier, but for solo Wizard it can be a challenge to get full use of the discard.
- Crystal Orb: Goodluck stopping wands when this is removed.
- Necromancer Book: Best combined with Spirit Blast, Paralysis or Vampire's Curse.
- Ice Orb: Never hurts to prevent attacking as a class with no damage reduction.
- Leechling: Allows for you to draw an extra card every turn at the expense of 1 life point.
- Arcane Veil, Imperfect Coercion & Mind Blast: Are usually not worth a main deck slot however they have their uses in Side Decks in order to combat Heal Wrap.
- Incubus: 2 Direct damage and a discarding defense is powerful, but requires the hard to use Bag of Dreams.
- Ox Bezoar: A useful Side Deck for those afraid of poison damage. This Ability can also be used as a transmute to prevent your opponent from attacking.
- Marcos' Malevolence: The real strength is the Instant Effect but it can be responded and your weapon could either end up lowered or the effect canceled.
- Dabble: Usable by all classes, this ability is great sidedeck option to make your wands unblockable.
- Calico's Blood: Usually seen in Monk & Rogue Decks this card is usable by all classes and turns the Equip Phase into a life gaining phase.
- Calico's Creed: Another usable by all classes card. For the cost of 1 lifepoint this allows you to draw an extra card at will. While traditionally seen in Rogue Decks it has its uses in Wizard as well.