Exodia Mage is a deck that capable of killing an opponent from any life total in a single turn. Be sure to read this guide before playing piloting this skill-intensive deck on the Standard Ladder!
Exodia Mage Overview
Exodia Mage is a deck that borrows its name from a Yu-Gi-Oh, in which assembling the pieces of a combo results in immediate victory.
In Hearthstone, Exodia Mage has a very similar game plan. By gathering 2x Sorcerer's Apprentices, 2x Molten Reflections, and Archmage Antonidas, the deck is capable of hurling an infinite number of Fireballs at the opponent’s face.
In order to reach the Exodia turn, the deck must be able to survive the onslaught of damage coming its way. As a result, several survivability tools, such as board Freezes, Doomsayers, and defensive Secrets, are included.
The Exodia combo actually requires two turns worth of mana to pull off. To account for this, the deck takes advantage of the extra turn granted by completion of Open the Waygate. Completing the quest requires you to play six spells that did not start in your deck, so the deck runs a handful of Spell Generation cards in addition to the combo pieces and Defensive Tools.
Exoida Mage Card Choices
Like most combo decks, Exodia Mage is a tight list with very few flexible spots. The section below provides an overview of the cards in the list along with an explanation of their purpose.
- Open the Waygate – Despite the spell-cost reducing effects of Sorcerer's Apprentice, infinite Fireballs isn’t achievable without the extra turn the Mage quest provides. As a result, Time Warp is a necessary component to the combo.
- Sorcerer's Apprentice – To go infinite, you need four Apprentices in play at a time in order to reduce the cost of Fireball to zero.
- Molten Reflection – Unfortunately, you can’t run four copies of Sorcerer's Apprentices in your deck. Two Molten Reflections lets you clone the minion twice, effectively creating the third and fourth copies.
- Simulacrum – What’s better than four copies of Sorcerer's Apprentice? That’s right, five. Simulacrum allows for preemptive copying and the ability to play both Cabalist's Tome and [Time Warp] for free to finish the quest as you combo out.
- Archmage Antonidas – Uncle Tony is the source of your firepower and the last piece to the Exodia Combo.
- Novice Engineer – Minion Damage is largely irrelevant in Exodia Mage, so the immediate draw from Engineer makes it superior to Loot Hoarder.
- Arcanologist – Controlled draw is insanely powerful. Arcanologists means more consistent drawing of Secrets without having to keep them in your opener.
- Arcane Intellect – An efficient draw spell for three mana. This card gets you deeper into your deck and closer to your combo.
- Coldlight Oracle – While giving your opponent cards should give you hesitation, the immediate nature of a Battlecry gives Coldlight the nod over the slower Acolyte of Pain.
- Doomsayer – At worst, Doomsayer heals for seven or wastes an opponent’s turn on removal. When you can trigger the effect, it cleans the board and sets up your card cycle turns.
- Frost Nova – Board freezes can buy you time against decks that rely on minion damage. In some cases, it can set up a Doomsayer or provide you with an extra turn to survive.
- Ice Block – With few options for interacting with the board, you’re likely going to die. Good news! Ice Block will give you an extra life or two (or three). This means another turn closer to comboing.
- Ice Barrier – For three mana, gaining eight life is pretty good. What makes it better, is being able to fetch it from Arcanologist making the card draw engine more consistent.
- Blizzard – More expensive than Frost Nova, but effectively serves the same purpose. If you can consistently Freeze opposing minions, it doesn’t matter if they survive the two damage.
- Babbling Book – A turn one play that’s better in many matches than just dropping the quest. The variance of the spell generating can be rough but frequently serves a good purpose in this deck.
- Primordial Glyph – The flexibility of this card makes it an auto include in nearly every Mage deck. In Exodia Mage, however, it also helps enable the quest.
- Cabalist's Tome – One card that grants three extra spells. If you have the time/mana to play them, you’re halfway done with the quest.
Exodia Mage Play Style
In most cases, Exodia Mage has a fairly linear game plan: survive long enough to draw through your deck and assemble all necessary combo pieces. Surviving heavily relies on knowing when to play your defensive tools by accounting for potential power turns from your opponent’s deck. Freeze effects are especially crucial as they can be used to buy you extra turns, much in the same fashion an Ice Block can. Using a Freeze to save minor to moderate amounts of damage is frequently a waste of a resource.
Despite the fairly simple goal, the deck is far from easy to play. Hand management is critical to the deck’s success as overdrawing and burning combo pieces can be devastating. Always keep track of the number of cards currently in hand, as well as how many your cycle cards will net you. It is also equally important to count your next turn’s draw in these equations.
Exodia Mage Deck List & Code
Exodia Mage Full Guide
Exoida Mage can be a difficult deck to pilot. My full Exodia Mage Guide is found on Hearthstone Top Decks. The guide is complete with Card Choices, Mulligan Strategies, General Play Style, Combo Sequence, Card Substitutions, and more!
If you have any questions, feedback, or observations about the deck, please leave a comment below!