Posted Fri, Mar 14, 2014 by Messiah
The rogue class in Hearthstone is one that is both very direct, but also very sneaky. It is direct in that it wants to deal damage to you quickly and straight ahead. It is sneaky in that it wasn't to use combo effects to maximize its power. Combo effects are currently only available to the Rogue class and are cards that do extra things if you use them after you have already used another card that turn.
Once such example is the Defias Ringleader, which is a 2/2 minion for 2 mana. However his combo ability (meaning if you use another card during the same turn before summoning him) you also get a 2/1 Defias Bandit minion for free. There are many other combos available for the Rogue class that add an interesting element to the class.
As a Rogue in Hearthstone you will be represented by Valeera Sanguinar whom is neither Alliance nor Horde. She serves as a broker of peace in Stormwind but is not loyal to any faction, only her friends Varian and Anduin.
As a rogue your hero power is a direct and repeatable form of damage, the ability to summon a 1 damage, 2 durability dagger for the cost of 2 mana.
While not super exciting as it is only able to cause 1 damage at a time, this little dagger lets you pick off enemies that are weak or dieing. Since the Rogue class also has ways to boost weapon damage, it can get better than it starts out.
These two simple cards for a really powerful combo.
When you first start a Rogue deck you will be granted many of the basic cards. In addition as you level up your rogue deck you will gain the remainder of the basic class cards by the time you reach level 10.
|Basic Rogue Spells|
|Assassinate||5||Destroy an enemy minion.|
|Backstab||0||Deal 2 damage to an undamaged minion.|
|Deadly Poison||1||Give your weapon +2 attack.|
|Sap||2||Return an enemy minion to your opponent's hand.|
|Sinister Strike||1||Deal 3 damage to the enemy hero.|
|Fan of Knives||3||Deal 1 damage to all enemy minions. Draw a card. [This card is gained at level 4]|
|Shiv||2||Deal 1 damage. Draw a card. [This card is gained at level 6]|
|Vanish||6||Return all minions to their owner's hand. [This card is gained at level 8]|
|Sprint||7||Draw 4 cards. [This card is gained at level 10]|
|Basic Rogue Equipment|
[This card is gained at level 2]
There are many additional Rogue cards than those listed above in the basic card section. These are the Expert cards and can be gained through the purchase or winning of expert card packs. Many of these cards are key to how the class plays and will be required to do well as a Rogue.
|Expert Rogue Spells|
|Betrayal||Common||2||An enemy minion deals its damage to the minions next to it.|
|Blade Flurry||Rare||2||Destroy your weapon and deal its damage to all enemies.|
|Conceal||Common||1||Give your minions Stealth until your next turn.|
|Eviscerate||Common||2||Deal 2 damage. Combo: Deal 4 damage instead.|
|Headcrack||Rare||3||Deal 2 damage to the enemy hero. Combo:Return this to your hand next turn.|
|Shadowstep||Common||0||Return a friendly minion to your hand. It costs 2 less.|
|Expert Rogue Minions|
|Defias Ringleader||Common||2||2||2||Combo: Summon a 2/1 Defias Bandit.|
|Edwin VanCleef||Legendary||3||2||2||Combo: Gain +2/+2 for each card played earlier this turn.|
|Kidnapper||Epic||6||5||3||Combo: Return a minion to its owner's hand.|
|Master of Disguise||Rare||4||4||4||Battlecry: Give a friendly minion stealth.|
Stealth. Destroy any minion damaged by this minion.
|SI:7 Agent||Rare||3||3||3||Combo: Deal 2 damage.|
|Sorcerer's Apprentice||Common||2||2||2||Your spells cost (1) less.|
|Expert Rogue Equipment|
Battlecry: Deal 1 damage. Combo: Deal 2 damage instead.
Combos are what can win most card games, and for the Rogue class that is even more true since one of their mechanics is called combo and allows them to get more out of their cards when used together. Here are just a few great tips and combos to keep in mind while using basic and advanced Rogue cards.
These cards boost each other based on combos, VanCleef can be extremely powerful
when used after a bunch of cheap cards.
Once you get into more advanced play and combos, you can look at some general cards rather than just sticking with rogue only cards. Here are just a few examples of some really good cards to pair up with a rogue deck:
As a rogue you should attempt to make use of your strengths. This means looking to keep the board clear and hitting the enemy fast and hard.
This deck is one that has been played online a lot and was used by Railedlol to become the #1 ranked constructed player in November. It in turn was based on Kithros's deck, and has been used in many slight variation by many players. Once addition I like is adding in Hogger for a little mid-game control from the free taunt minions he creates, but there are several other variations out there to choose from.
Rogues can do OK in the Arena format as long as they remember what the class is all about, damage. Rogue decks, especially in the Arena work best if they are all about rushing to do as much damage to you opponent as quickly as possible. When drafting cards it is important to keep that in mind and go for agressive, fast, direct cards. Don't get caught up in a control or mid-game style of play, as you more than likely lose.
To ensure that you are able to finish off your opponent with this direct damage style of rush deck, you will not want to trade minions with your opponent. Every chance you get you should be hitting your opponent directly and ignoring his minions as much as you can with yours. For dealing with enemy minions you should ensure you have some of the Rogue removal or delaying cards such as SI:7 Agent, Backstab, Eviscerate, and more. In addition, minions with silence are a strong option as well, as they let you remove that pesky taunt ability from your opponents minions, so that you can slide by and hit them directly. Even your class ability is a good early game removal method, although at only 1 damage, later in the game it is best used to inflict more damage on your opponent directly.
Since many of the Rogue cards are cheap, it can be important to grab a few generic cards that offer some card draw to help you keep pace in the game. Since you are looking at dealing direct damage, you never want to fall behind in card drawing ability.
While the actual game play remains the same between constructed format play and arena play, the actual value and strength of specific cards can change drastically. This is due to the limited pool of cards that each player will have available to them. It is therefore important to understand which cards are of the most value in the Arena when drafting.
When playing in the Arena and drafting your deck, some of the best cards to draft for the Rogue class are as outlined below along with some reasoning. They are listed in alphabetical order.
You can also find a listing of the general non-class specific cards that are the best to draft in the arena format in these two guides:
As with any of the classes in Hearthstone there are many different winning strategies. The ideas and decks above are just the start. If you have alternate ideas on decks or methods to use the basic or expert cards for the Rogues class in Hearthstone, please feel free to share them in our comment section below.