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Tavern Brawl - promo.png The subject of this article is part of the
Tavern Brawl game mode.

Top 2.jpg

"The Innkeeper is wondering which two cards work best together. Show him - choose 2 cards and we'll fill your deck with them!"

Top 2 is a Tavern Brawl. It debuted on May 11, 2016.

This Brawl inspired the similar Top 3.


Tavern Brawl Start End
48 May 11, 2016 May 16, 2016


This Tavern Brawl sees players doing battle with custom decks composed solely of copies of two cards chosen by the player. Each deck includes precisely 15 copies of each chosen card.[1]


A huge variety of combinations are possible in this Brawl, some competitive, some just for fun. Some 'decks' provide reliable but perhaps boring face damage, while other aim for unlikely but potentially spectacular payoffs. A number of decks are listed below, included some strong competitive choices and some fun alternatives.

  • Mana Wyrm + (Arcane Missiles): A very cheap and aggressive deck relying on the Wyrms' increasing attack power to rush down the face. Without enemy removal from turn 3 onwards, this can quickly ramp to over 10 damage per turn.
  • Black Cat + Arcane Missiles: Card draw and increased spell damage. Simple yet rather effective.
  • Fatigue/Mill: These decks mill the opponent, with the goal of destroying them through fatigue damage. The best card picks are some combination of forcing card draw and sustain, ensuring the hero's own survival until the opponent can be milled.
  • Armoursmith + damage all minion cards: Usually with Whirlwind, but Warpath is a possible alternative. These allow for an incredibly quick acquisition of armour against any direct damage based deck, but are weak to mill strategies.
  • Mind Blast (+ Novice Engineer). Cheap direct damage can be played quickly, while the card draw allows for an endless supply. This could also work with other cards: notably Radiant Elemental, which can allow the hand to be emptied as soon as enough cards are drawn; including Squashling for card-efficient healing; or Smite to increase the average damage per card drawn. Does not tend to be the strongest with 5 starting damage per turn amazingly rather slow compared to aggressive decks, but with the right draws can kill the enemy around the same time if not barely quicker.
  • Knife Juggler + Call to Arms (CtA): While CtA is receiving a nerf shortly from the time of writing, one cast will cause at least 5 damage, and when making a full board of 7, the combo allows for a large amount of damage against the entire board to stop aggressive minions. With 15 Jugglers in the deck, is fairly hard to run out of cards.
  • Upgrade! + Shield Block. Upgrade repeatedly, and Shield Block to stay alive while drawing more Upgrades. Not too effective against strategies incorporating Freezes or Taunts, but potentially fun.
  • Murloc spam: Common in past years, this relies on a mass of Grimscale Oracles and Murloc Tidecallers, which synergise with their clone bretheren to increase their damage. Usually best played with the Warlock Hero Power, Life Tap.
  • Evolve + Murloc Tidehunter/Bilefin Tidehunter. The minion cards give you 2 minions for the price of 1, while Evolve quickly grows them into something stronger. The more Evolves you play, the bigger they get, healing each time, as you quickly build up your board.


  • Ice Block + Ice Lance: When the first Ice Block is activated, the number of cards in your hand won't increase any more, since the opponent will almost always proc the Ice Block again the following turn. Usually after about 20 turns the hand will be consisted only of Ice Lance. The available damage will be equal to (n-1)*4, where n is the number of Ice Lance in your hand and also you can use Fireblast the same turn for 1 extra damage or bad manners. If not playing against Priest or Warrior, it is advantageous to use Fireblast to hit your opponent's hero. The deck is weak to Warrior and any other form of Armor, any ultra aggressive deck that can activate the first Ice Block in T3 or T4 (since the number of cards might be too low for the win condition), damage to opponent hero altering minions (f.e. Animated Armor), at that point it is necessary to use Fireblast to destroy those minions. If faced against a Mill deck, use Ice Lance immediately.
    • Fireball is an alternative to Ice Lance option - it is much more card-efficient, but does not help as much against enemy mill. Since the number of cards in hand does not increase once Ice Block procs, Fireball is vastly superior against highly aggressive decks, since you are unlikely to have enough cards to kill with Ice Lance.
  • Minion-based: Create a high-damage board to quickly destroy the opponent. Includes any Astral Communion deck, the combination of Windfury minions with attack boosts, or Mechwarper/Metaltooth Leaper. Loses to Mage, wins against Fatigue. Mirror match determined by lower time-to-kill and difficulty of answering board - Mechwarper/Metaltooth is roughly optimal, yielding T3 time-to-kill going second and T4 time-to-kill going first, while putting out a large board of 3-Health minions, but is not impossible to deal with for some other minion decks (for example, Frost Nova/Mana Wyrm).
  • Ice Block + Molten Giant: Ice Block allows the Mage's Health to get extremely low without dying - at this point the Mage plays out several Molten Giants in one turn, followed by more Ice Blocks to stay alive.
  • Innervate + Ragnaros the Firelord: Druids can combine Innervate with any high power minion to summon it early in the game, although this may not be soon enough to deal with aggressive decks, or sustained enough to survive against more synergistic decks. Ragnaros' powerful effect makes it a good pick. This has become significantly less useful since the nerfing of Innvervate to 1 bonus mana.
    • Innervate + Dr. Boom is extremely strong.
    • Innervate + Yogg-Saron is especially fun. Innervate provides enough mana to play Yogg early on, as well as spells to proc its ability. Repeated Yoggs bring a lot of RNG and potentially other cards for the Druid.
    • Innervate + King Mukla to fill the opponent hand with bananas while playing minions with good stats.
  • Warlock can produce a lots of direct damage in the early game using Soulfire and Fist of Jaraxxus. Your hand becomes empty very fast but you can use your Life Tap hero power to draw some extra card.
  • Power Word: Glory + Light of the Naaru/Mind Blast. PW:G to let minions with 4 or less Attack ineffective or even desirable. (You can use two of them to make even bigger minions useless.) Light of the Naaru also helps stay alive, and summons Lightwarden. Mind Blast can be used instead of Light of the Naaru, for direct damage.
  • Brave Archer + Target Dummy. Swarm the board with Archers and trigger their Inspire for a deadly volley of arrows. Can kill by turn four. The Dummies help you empty your hand and keep the Archers alive. Also works with Wisp and Murloc Tinyfin, but Dummies are better against Druid, Rogue and minion-based strategies. Very strong against mill because of the low-cost cards.
  • Target Dummy + Bolster. Can empty the hand on the first turn to put huge stats on the board, and becomes even stronger with each use of Bolster.
  • As a Warlock, you can use Renounce Darkness + any other warlock card to "break" the brawl rules.
  • Twilight Elder + C'Thun. And extremely powerful combo, from turn 3 (or turn 2 if you have The Coin) keep on playing Twilight Elders, with your Hero Power on turn 5 and 8, until you can at last play your C'Thun on turn 10. Extremely good when accompanied with mage, as its Hero Power will be able to keep enemy minions at bay for a limited amount of time.


  • The blood elf in this Brawl's art is holding Acidic Swamp Ooze and Hellfire, a combination which is unlikely to prove effective, especially given that Hellfire will destroy the player's own Acidic Swamp Oozes.


  1. PlayHearthstone on Twitter. (2016-05-11).