We are well into the release of The Grand Tournament and the meta-game has finally experienced some stabilization. New archetypes like Dragon Priest and Secret Paladin have completely altered the game while old standbys like the Patron Warrior have endured (and even prospered) with the release of over 130 new cards. Unfortunately, many of the new TGT cards have not panned out to be as dominate as preceding expansions and the new mechanics Joust and Inspire look to be place cards for future Hearthstone endeavors. TGT is still an auspicious game though, with dozens of cards, combinations, and archetypes that have yet to be discovered. The_FunkMaster’s Beast Druid deck is just that, it uses a plethora of new and unused cards to breathe light into an already existing archetype. Combo Druid has been a consistent and strong deck for a long time and this Beast Druid takes that skeletal outline to create a fun and successful new prototype.
How to play:
Much like the Combo Druid, the pace of play is inherently dictated by the opponent. With thirteen “Choose One” cards, Beast Druid has the ability to adapt to any playstyle. The bread and butter of this deck is still the Force of Nature/Savage Roar combo, as it is the primary win condition and main reason this deck doesn’t suck.
Against Aggro: Ordinarily, you’ll want to try to Innervate out a bigger minion like Druid of the Fang orWildwalker to take complete control of the board early. This can also play like a quintessential midrange deck, in that you’ll be able to religiously play the mana-curve to snowball the opponent to defeat. Cards like Wrath, Druid of the Saber, and Swipe are excellent board control cards while Druid of the Fang, Dr. Boom, and the FON/SR combo are the finishers.
Against Control: Procuring an early board presence is absolutely necessary and with seven, 1-3 costed minions, it shouldn’t be too difficult. Druid of the Saber and Jungle Panther are excellent board control cards as they scale excellently into the mid-late game with cards like Wildwalker and Druid of the Fang. Try to bait out a Big Game Hunter with a DOTF so that you can fearlessly play a Dr. Boom on turn-7. Force of Nature and Savage roar are still your primary win condition, so make sure not to frivolously waste those cards.
A common denominator throughout this article has been “versatility,” and even in the mulligan phase this proves to be true. Guessing the opponents archetype is half the battle, as it will dictate your mulligan choices and the pace of play you choose to begin with.
Against Aggro: Innervate and Darnassus Aspirant are the two most important cards to get when going up against an aggressive deck. The ability to ramp out bigger and stronger minions is crucial to quickly defeating aggro because you’ll not be able to outlast a Face Hunter or out trade a Zoo Lock without them.
Against Control: Minions are paramount and holding onto usual auto-includes like Wrath isn’t necessary. Like I said above, Jungle Panther and Druid of the Saber are excellent cards against control for their ability to stick on the board and scale into the mid-late stages of the game.
Ancient of Lore: This card almost seems like a throw-in because of its versatility. It’s good because it can heal you in tricky situations and help draw you into win conditions. But for 7-mana, that’s asking a lot. Call me stupid, but I like the Grove Tender more in this deck. This deck struggles against Face Hunter and with the Grove Tender you can scale harder against aggro while placing an additional minion on the board. Against Control, you’ll have another crucial, early game minion. It’s just that this one helps cycle the deck to obtain key components for that devastating combo finisher.
Savage Combatant: I love this card and effusively praise it in certain situations, it’s just that this is not one of them. This is essentially a 6-mana card because of its fragile, 4-life points. Either Loatheb or Piloted Shredder are an adequate replacement for this card. Yes, Savage Combatant is a beast card, but that can only get you so far, and in this deck it doesn’t synergize well.
While this might not be a meta-breaking archetype, it is still a fun and effective deck to play on ladder. Surprise factor is one of the most underrated aspects of climbing ladder, and this deck defiantly supplies that. Yeah, it might not be perfect and it might not have the algorithmic code to succeed, but you know what? It’s different, it’s fun, and it’s just what Hearthstone needs. As always, if you have any questions, comments or suggestions, make sure to leave them below!