I just played with my Warlock Zoo deck against a Warrior. I thought that it was a Control Warrior, which turned out to be a devastating error. It was a Grim Patron Warrior, and I delivered a perfect board full of Imps just when he was able to play the Warsong Commander Grim Patron combo.

Maybe this matchup is pretty much hopeless anyway, with Imp-losion, Imp Gang Boss, Haunted Creeper and Voidwalker I have just too many minions that are ideal to multiply Grim Patrons. But I wasn't all that far from being able to burst down his remaining health, so maybe it is not entirely hopeless.

But I need to recognize earlier if a Warrior is likely to be a Grim Patron style one, and not only after they played their combo. Are there any particular signs that indicate a Grim Patron Warrior and not a Control Warrior?

  • 2
    It's nice how the game has reached a state where questions like this one become relevant. In this case, there's probably no way to adapt your play except maybe going all-in if you know it's a GPW.
    – scenia
    May 14, 2015 at 21:29
  • 1
    For the most part right now, it's fairly safe to assume the majority of Warriors are GPW.
    – Waterseas
    May 15, 2015 at 14:27

3 Answers 3


The sign to me is usually the presence of an early Unstable Ghoul. Control warriors usually don't play the ghoul, but GPW's do.

Another sign would be the presence is a Warbot. Control warriors don't play this card, but it can be useful in GPW decks. This is usually the earliest, easiest way of telling for me.

Waterseas edit: Acolyte of Pain is a great card that comes out early. This card is used along with Whirlwind, Bouncing Blades or CTM for quick card draw. All of those cards also lead to the drawing of their combo.

  • I recently played a match against a GPW that would use Armor Up! almost every turn, probably to have defensive padding as he waited to draw the combo. May 14, 2015 at 21:13
  • Ya that's a good point. Lots of armor and early clears with weapons could say control too.
    – FoxMcCloud
    May 14, 2015 at 21:14
  • Disagree with the second point; any competitive GPW deck will not play warbot. Would recommend replacing that light with 'Acolyte of Pain'; that's generally the earliest tell, as often times, Unstable ghoul will be saved if it can be.
    – Waterseas
    May 15, 2015 at 14:27
  • 1
    @Waterseas That's a good point. I was just pointing out that that is the only deck that would ever ever ever play Warbot. No other Warrior deck would play that card. Acolyte of Pain is a great card, I'll add that to the answer.
    – FoxMcCloud
    May 15, 2015 at 14:47
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    Acolyte of Pain is not a good indicator for any type of deck because it goes so well together with Whirlwind and Cruel Taskmaster, which are both played by vast majority of warrior decks. Subjective observation is that more than half of control warriors play Acolyte of Pain.
    – Moyli
    May 30, 2015 at 20:41

The Grim Patron Warrior (GPW) plays more "Card draw"-cards like Loot Hoarder, Acolyte of Pain (like Control Warrior), Battle Rage and sometimes Gnomish Inventor to get the combo pieces.

Normally they have less "Armor"-cards like Shield Block, Shield Slam or Shieldmaiden.

The GPW I faced also played Dread Corsair.


If you are a regular player, you must have realized that 90% of the warriors are GPW now a days, the right question is how to recognize a traditional control warrior or the new control dragon warrior (with ysera). If you see shield slams and shield blocks then it's a control warrior.

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