Building a Hunter deck isn’t always easy, but we focused on a basic starter deck in last week’s Happy Hearthstone episode, which introduced our new deck-battling format.
The new format challenges the show’s guests to bring a personal favorite deck and play a best-of-3 series against the host’s deck. Dan Patriss, my guest-host on last week’s show, brought a Hunter deck to challenge me.
Note from Josh: I asked Dan to explain his deck and card choices on this blog to help listeners understand why he picked the cards he did, and why they might want to try building the deck. The rest of the article is from him. Thanks, Dan!
The Beastmaster Deck
You know my deck is THE BEASTMASTER. (That link is your homework: watch that movie!) It’s a pretty straightforward rush-type deck, which means it wants to punch the opponent in the face as quickly and as often as possible. Its strengths are having decent removal and a bunch of great Beast minions. Its weakness is that it’s kind of light on Taunt minions, which can leave yourself vulnerable.
Let’s get straight into the cards I used in my deck for the mighty showdown with Josh. You can find a completely plain deck list on the podcast episode. Here, I’ll provide additional commentary where I feel it’s helpful or necessary.
2x Hunters Mark
This, combined with Arcane Shot (below), can get you out of a lot of sticky situations. It only costs you 1 mana, but also takes 2 card slots. In that regard, it’s a bit expensive, but it’s still a decent combo.
2x Arcane Shot
This card is cheap, reliable removal, especially for early threats like a 3/2 with perks like Knife Juggler. If you’re not sold on this combo, I think you could also do fine with just 1 Hunter’s Mark and 1 Arcane Shot in this deck, and filling that space with more minions. (I list some ideas for what cards you could add in at the bottom of this post).
I normally don’t like spending a card slot on something that makes me discard 2 cards, but this card will often help you dig to that one card you really need at the moment (see: Explosive Shot).
As I mentioned on the show, these cards are a huge deal in this deck. Being able to give The Beast or a pile of other beasts +1 and Charge will add a ton of damage to your opponent. The cheap cost means you can almost always play a beast alongside it, to benefit from the Charge.
1x Timber Wolf
This one is replaceable, despite first appearances. But 1-cost beasts are rare and the perks on this one allow it to still be meaningful, even in the late-game.
Not only will this often wipe the enemy’s board if you can get it out early, it will also toss in an extra 2 damage on your opponent. It’s a great trap!
This is another great Secret. When someone has that 7/7 minion out there and your board is empty, the opponent is likely to think you have an Explosive Trap or Freezing Trap. Then, all of a sudden, he gets hit by his own minion and that won’t make him happy.
These guys are soooo high on the meta-scale right now, it’s scary. They’re good in almost every deck because the current big-picture strategy makes Silencing super useful. It’s a great equalizer for virtually no mana cost.
I’m still not sure if I need 2 of these in this deck (I need to test more!). He gets +2/+1 when any beast dies, and beasts will be dying like crazy with this deck. If nothing else, it’s a card that your opponent has to kill before they target your other minions.
This is one of the few draw-card effects in this deck, which makes it invaluable.
I LOVE THIS CARD. Especially in this deck. All three of the beasts that this card can summon are useful, and the 3-mana cost is great.
2x Kill Command
This card wins games. It’s 5 damage almost every time you use it.
This is a cheap, powerful taunt minion ’nuff said
This is one of the first cards you should swap out if you get something more powerful. But that said, getting it on the ground one turn before you get a Houndmaster that can buff it before it attacks is amazing, letting you pound someone for 6.
2x Multi Shot
3 damage to 2 opponent minions almost always means this will kill two of their cards, for only one of yours (a 2-for-1).
You should ALWAYS have a beast on the board, so this is a free taunt and buff a friendly minion. This is irreplaceable and a key to this deck
9 total damage to minion. It might not always take out 3 things, but it will sometimes–and it should always get 2 at the very least.
I really wish it was 3 attack, but it’s still a nice effect to have. Plus, he’s 3/5, which is really solid too.
1x Tundra Rhino
In most decks, this is not a great card, but in this beast-heavy deck, it’s a great card to get rush damage mid-game.
This one’s really only here to keep crowding the board with beasts, even if he dies.
1x The Beast
Normally, I don’t like giving my opponent anything for free, but you have to have faith that he’ll live a turn and, if he does, he can get you the win.
Here are some cards you should consider swapping into the deck if you have them. They aren’t in my main list either because I haven’t unlocked them in-game yet, or because I think they’re better as sub cards.
It’s a decent bounce effect, but I’m not sure it fits the theme entirely and doesn’t protect as much as something like Explosive Trap.
When paired with Unleash the Hounds, this could be a turn 2, 4-damage beast. It’s not game changing, but it will scare your opponent quickly.
This is a possible replacement for the Timber Wolf, but it only effects 2 beasts. So, if you rush your opponent, you’re going to get more use out of a mid-game Timber Wolf than you would an Dire Wolf Alpha, which is also more expensive.
When used with the Houndmaster, you have a lethal killing machine.
1x King Mukla
I’m not a fan of giving my opponent a free card, but some players might like to use him to just keep rushing the opponent.
1x King Krush
This is probably the best Legendary card for this deck. So much damage, so much beast!
This might not be a perfect or tournament-ready deck, but I still have a lot of fun playing with it. I hope you do too!
Be sure to listen to our last episode of the podcast, where we talk about the deck at length. If you try it out, tell us what you thought of it, and what cards you swapped in to have the most success.