Building Iyslander on a Budget

Iyslander is the Ice Wizard hero featured in the latest Uprising set. While she has made her debut in the previous set, Everfest, it’s in Uprising that she is featured as an adult hero and has a fully fleshed out Ice and Wizard card pool. The expanded card pool gives Iyslander many different directions in terms of strategy, but the core component of any build is arcane damage and disruption. In this article, I will focus on a control list that revolves around the power of Iyslander’s specializations – Frost Hex and Ice Eternal. These cards combined can present upwards of 30 damage on a single turn and create the One Turn Kill control archetype. I will present a 60-card main deck and a few ideas on equipment, while leaving you to explore different pre-board options for your own metagame. 



Budget Iyslander

Class: Wizard
Hero: Iyslander, Stormbind
Weapons: Waning Moon
Equipment: Conduit of Frostburn, Ironhide Helm, Ironhide Legs, Ironhide Plate

(3) Aether Hail (red)
(3) Aether Icevein (red)
(3) Arctic Incarceration (red)
(3) Fate Foreseen (red)
(3) Oasis Respite (red)
(3) Sink Below (red)
(3) Aether Hail (blue)
(3) Aether Icevein (blue)
(3) Arctic Incarceration (blue)
(3) Channel Lake Frigid (blue)
(3) Cold Snap (blue)
(3) Emeritus Scolding (blue)
(3) Energy Potion (blue)
(3) Frost Hex (blue)
(3) Frosting (blue)
(3) Ice Bolt (blue)
(3) Ice Eternal (blue)
(3) Insidious Chill (blue)
(3) Polar Cap (blue)
(3) Winter's Bite (blue)


Header - Frost Hex and Ice Eternal

Frost Hex is the first affliction introduced in Flesh and Blood alongside Hypothermia. What makes it unique is the fact it stays in play as a permanent, slowly punishing your opponents for having Frostbites by pinging them for one arcane damage per Frostbite. Cards like Arctic Incarceration that create a bunch of Frostbites synergize well with Frost Hex, as they force the opponent to push through their Frostbites or face arcane damage. The more Frost Hexes they have under their control, the more threatening those Frostbites become.

Frost Hex (Regular)Hypothermia (Regular)Ice Eternal (Regular)Arctic Incarceration (Red) (Regular)Frostbite (Regular)

A card that synergizes well with the Frost Hexes and is one of the central pieces of this deck is Ice Eternal. Ice Eternal creates a number of Frostbites under target hero’s control, where X is double what you pitch for it. So 10 resources turn into five Frostbites, eight into four Frostbites and so on. You can also Ice fuse it to ping the opponent for X arcane damage, where X is the amount of Frostbites they control.

Ice Eternal also synergizes with cards like red Arctic Incarceration quite well, as you can play one out, arsenal the Ice Eternal and then play it out in the opponent’s turn while they have the previous three Frostbites in play. If they’re playing something out that breaks those, you can respond to the Frostbite trigger with Ice Eternal to push through some arcane damage, while the previous Frostbites are getting destroyed, as they still count as being in play.

Insidious Chill (Regular)Energy Potion (Regular)Ice Eternal (Regular)

The whole aim of this deck is to get as many Frost Hexes into play, then hit your opponent with a huge Ice Eternal. Create at least six Frostbites, shoot them for six from Ice Eternal, then six for each Frost Hex. This should shut their turn down and give you another window to shoot off another Ice Eternal in the next few turns. The key to this combo is setting up your board. Frost Hex is a must and you have to find ways to play it out. Insidious Chill is another key component, which will help you slow your opponent down with fused spells, or simply make your Ice Eternal more effective. Energy Potions are amazing when paired with Ice Eternal. Each additional Frostbite can make a difference in whether the opponent is able to play their turn or not and presents more damage with Frost Hexes. All you want to do in the early and mid stages of the game is get your key pieces out onto the board and survive till late game. The two main ways to survive are defense and disruption.


Header - Disruption

Iyslander has a lot of different disruption tools, especially now with the release of Uprising and extra Ice and Wizard cards. The Ice Wizard cards are especially useful, as they create a Frostbite when played out from Arsenal on opponent’s turn.

Channel Lake Frigid (Regular)Arctic Incarceration (Blue) (Regular)Winter's Bite (Blue) (Regular)Aether Hail (Blue) (Regular)

Channel Lake Frigid is a disruptive all-star. Being able to play this out on the opponent’s turn without getting a flow counter at the end of their turn is huge, as it makes it so much easier to keep the Channel around for an extra turn. You get to make a Frostbite off that as well. Cards like Arctic Incarceration and Winter’s Bite are just standard taxation effects that help you slow your opponents down. If you have spare resources, you can use your Waning Moon to chip through some damage, as you disrupt your opponents, but remember that surviving is more important than trying to push damage with this build. If you have a choice of defending up two damage or pushing three, it’s better to defend and wait for the big combo.


Header - Defense

Most of the red pitch cards in this list are your defensive tools, as survival and setup are the deck’s top priority. Cards like Fate Foreseen and Sink Below are amazing at defense while they can also help you filter through your deck and find the needed set up pieces. 

Fate Foreseen (Red) (Regular)Sink Below (Red) (Regular)Oasis Respite (Red) (Regular)Ironhide Plate (Regular)

Your equipment suite is geared for survival mode. All of the pieces utilize your access to lots of blue pitch cards to stop any threatening on-hit effects and should help you last until the end game. Do note, the equipment slots are very flexible and you should adjust these based on your opponents. 

Oasis Respite is a new defensive tool introduced in the Uprising set and it slots in very nicely along your Quell piece and Ironhide armor. This allows you to make the most use of pitching cards on the opponent’s turn and stopping as much damage as possible. Because you’re playing towards a big blowout turn in the late game, chances are you will be lower life than your opponent, making the life gain on Oasis Respite relevant. As you set up and go through your deck, you should be using up these defensive tools as you go along. This ensures that when you draw your Ice Eternals on the second cycle of the deck, you have a grip full of blues and are ready to freeze your opponent under a stack of Frostbites.

This deck is made for players who love playing the control archetype. Ice in general offers amazing disruption, but when paired with the Wizard’s spells and playing at instant speed, it offers a ton of flexibility in game play. This deck list was designed to help you to get started on your Iyslander journey without the need for expensive card choices. However, if you would like to upgrade this list, the one big upgrade I would recommend is Storm Striders. This card allows you to play out cards like Aether Icevein or Freezing Point at instant speed and adds an unexpected element of disruption or another layer to your combo that is bound to surprise your opponent.

I hope you enjoy your journey into the Bleak Expanse with the new ice queen of the Classic Constructed format!

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