Khadgar Dragon Mage Deck List Guide – Rise of Shadows (RoS)

We're taking a look at the Dragon Mage archetype that's making waves in the Rise of Shadows meta!

Our Hearthstone Khadgar Dragon Mage Deck List Guide at this popular archetype in the early Rise of Shadows meta! Dragons have been very impactful so far for Mage, and look to be one of its main options going forward. Our guide on this deck features the best deck list, a mulligan guide, play strategy, card choices, and substitutions if you're missing anything from the deck!

Dragon Mage saw some slight success in the Rastkhan's Rumble meta, and has been toyed with now and again. While the class didn't get any direct synergy for this style of play, it did get Kalecgos which has some powerful potential in it. We also got Khadgar, which can work nicely as a later game control card and pairs well with our various minion summoning cards. A lot of powerful Neutral Dragons and Dragon synergy has stuck around after the rotation, so we'll be looking to pair some of that old stuff with some of the new.

Dragon Mage Deck List for Rise of Shadows

Dragon Mage has shown to be a pretty decent deck so far in the early stages of Rise of Shadows. Apxvoid seems to have created the most popular version which can be found below.

MageNeutral
2x - Book of Specters2x - Acidic Swamp Ooze
1x - Khadgar2x - Firetree Witchdoctor
2x - Conjurer's Calling1x - Sunfury Protector
2x - Messenger Raven2x - Scaleworm
2x - Astromancer2x - Twilight Drake
2x - Power of Creation1x - Dragonmaw Scorcher
1x - Kalecgos1x - Harrison Jones
1x - Rotten Applebaum
1x - Zilliax
1x - Safeguard
2x - Crowd Roaster
2x - Mountain Giant

Deck Code

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Dragon Mage Mulligans

We're mainly looking for Book of Specters to build up our hand, but there's a few other cards worth keeping.

Always Keep

  • Book of Specters - One of your best keeps, it will hopefully fill up our hand as long as we can dodge any spells. We have a better likelihood of hitting all minions with the larger deck size in the early game.
  • Firetree Witchdoctor - Another very good keep. Establishes a slight bit of board presence, and replaces itself with a spell. We aren't running many spells, so this is a way for us to cheat one in while still playing a minion.
  • Messenger Raven - Largely the same idea as Firetree, but instead of a spell it gives us a minion. Mage has some decent minions, and we might even find one that is already in the deck and could give us another copy.
  • Twilight Drake - We should be holding a pretty good sized hand, especially if we had Book of Specters in the early game. If we can hold onto our cards, we can get out a big Drake.
  • Mountain Giant - We're hoping to maintain a pretty healthy hand, so we can get use out of Mountain Giant in the early game.

Situational Keeps

  • Acidic Swamp Ooze - If you're against a weapon class (Rogue and Warrior is really popular right now) then you should probably keep the ooze to take out a weapon.

Dragon Mage Play Strategy

Early game we generally want to be building up our hand quite a bit. We have both Twilight Drake and Mountain Giant that require quite a few cards to operate well for being played as soon as possible. Most of our early game either replaces itself or draws more cards (Book of Specters). Our best case scenario is getting that big draw, and then dropping a giant or drake on curve.

Scaleworm is a card that can also settle down our board for us, it's not a spell exactly but as long as we have another dragon in hand then we can use it like a removal spell and remove a minion on board. It's unlikely our opponent will have anything that we can't run this into to remove in the earlier stages in the game. It will also require our opponent to deal with it, which gives us a chance to build up our resources. If you have this and Twilight Drake as your only Dragon in hand, then you should use this first to get the buff from it. I'd rather get full value out of the worm and lose a health on the Drake, then to not get value from it at all.

Against more aggressive decks we're generally looking to survive, but against control heavy decks we're looking to stack resources on the board. This deck can actually build up quite a presence if you get the right cards. This is especially the case with Astromancer, who provide some pretty strong stats herself while potentially giving you a big minion on board if your hand is healthy. You can also combine this with Khadgar for extra power. We've also got Power of Creation which could get us some beefy drops, and almost fill up the board when paired with Khadgar.

Speaking of generating resource, Conjurer's Calling is one of your better cards for doing this. While it seems counter-intuitive to destroy your own minions, you will generally be doing this when you've traded into a minion and you can get value out of it by splitting it into two! This card also has Twinspells, which means if you get something bad from the first roll of minions you can split the bad one into two new minions. In very rare cases, you can use this as removal for an opponent's minion. You would obviously only want to do this on something particularly high value, or if you were attempting to get around a taunt for lethal.

In the late game is where we're going to shine the most, I've already mentioned the powerful ways we can generate extra resources, but we also have Kalecgos. Our opponent will likely have had to remove quite a few of our powerful minions already, and we might actually be able to stick this powerful Dragon on the board. If we can do this, then we can get some pretty high value spells that will cost us nothing. This can lead us to lethals, or stuff that will help swing the game back into our favor.

Dragon Mage Card Choices

  • Acidic Swamp Ooze - The most popular decks right now are all running a lot of weapons, so we need a way to stop them from bashing down our minions or setting off their combos.
  • Book of Specters - Really strong draw card in a deck that has very few spells. We will sometimes burn a spell now and again, but most of the time we're happy with getting three cards for 2-mana.
  • Firetree Witchdoctor - Mage spells are pretty powerful, and we should be running enough Dragons to trigger this often enough. By the time we're able to play this, we should be able to determine what kind of deck we're up against so making the choice on the discover should be easier. We're also running a deck that doesn't have many spells, so this is an outside way to get some.
  • Khadgar - We're running a few different cards that summon minions and they can all be improved by playing Khadgar alongside of them.
  • Sunfury Protector - We should have some pretty beefy minions on the board, and we'll likely need to protect our face from aggressive decks. Sunfury Protector helps utilize those high health Dragons.
  • Conjurer's Calling - Best used on one of our minions we don't care about, and should be combined with Khadgar. In a pinch, we can use it as removal but we don't want to give our opponent more minions.
  • Messenger Raven - Another way to run a minion and cheat a spell into our deck.
  • Scaleworm - We can hopefully get a 2-for-1 out of Scaleworm, it's just too bad it isn't a Dragon itself.
  • Twilight Drake - We should be holding our cards in the early game, so Twilight Drake will end up having some decent health if we can play it on curve. It's also a Dragon that can power our other synergy cards.
  • Dragonmaw Scorcher - Good against token and cheap minion decks, it's also a Dragon which we need. The inclusion of this card will largely depend on the meta, but it's a pretty solid addition to the deck.
  • Harrison Jones - Another card that beats up the popular weapon equipping classes. This isn't a required card, but it's nice to get some draw from destroying weapons.
  • Rotten Applebaum - We'll need some protection for our face, and we also could probably use some healing against aggressive decks. This provides both in one package.
  • Zilliax - If you are building a deck and you don't start with Zilliax you might be doing it wrong. This card fits into just about every deck because it's crazy good, and is one of the most versatile cards in Standard right now.
  • Safeguard - More protection for our face, and we can even combine it with Khadgar if we time the Deathrattle correctly.
  • Astromancer - We should generally have quite a few cards in hand, so we should be able to summon some pretty big minions with this. Khadgar of course will pair nicely with Astromancer.
  • Crowd Roaster - Will remove most big minions, even if the stats aren't great. The 7-attack does require our opponent to remove it.
  • Power of Creation - More Khadgar synergy and can get us a pretty strong board if we're lucky.
  • Kalecgos - The power of this card is really going to depend on if you have a really good spell in your hand, or you get something off the Discover. You aren't going to likely get a second turn out of this card. It does have high health, but it's going to be an immediate target for removal.
  • Mountain Giant - We're hoping to hold a lot of cards in our hand, and Mountain Giant is great for taking advantage of that.

Dragon Mage Card Substitutions

  • Daring Fire-Eater - If our build starts running Jan'alai which needs us to do a fair amount of damage with our hero power then this could be a possible inclusion.
  • Doomsayer - One of the mainstays of more control oriented decks. While it doesn't always clear the board, it will usually "heal" us for at least 7-health that our opponent will have to put into it to remove it from the board. This gives us an extra turn to get closer to our more expensive cards.
  • Frostbolt - If this deck went away from a heavier minion based strategy we'd likely run a couple of Frostbolts.
  • Acolyte of Pain - We're a slow deck and we need to get into our deck to our powerful cards. We can hopefully get a couple of cards off the Acolyte, but at the very least we're forcing our opponent to waste resources removing this card that gets replaced with another one.
  • Pyromaniac - Another card that supplies some synergy with our hero power and gets us a card in the process. The stats are solid as well, so you can just play this on curve whether or not you're going to trigger the effect.
  • Fireball - One of Mage's best spells, it will see inclusion if we don't go fully in on minions.
  • Polymorph - Strong full removal, but we're not running many spells right now so doesn't fit in the deck currently.
  • Blizzard - Either we can clear our enemy board, soften it up, or just freeze it in place to buy us a turn. Blizzard is a great card for giving us some extra time.
  • Flamestrike - Solid board clear that we'll likely need to rely on to get back into the late portion of the game against aggressive and midrange decks.
  • Jan'alai, the Dragonhawk - Solid card on its own, but gets pretty insane when you pair it with Khadgar.
  • Alexstrasza - Strong Dragon card that will either reduce our opponent's health to a manageable level, or in some cases bring us back to a health that might allow us to survive.

About the Author

Evident is a lifelong gamer and creator of websites. He mostly focuses on shooters, but has been known to dabble in the occasional card game as well. You can find him binge watching TV shows in his downtime.

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