- Midrange Beast Druid
- Beast Druid
First of all, a huge thanks to @anchorm4n for doing the series for the past couple weeks! I initially thought I was done with Hearthstone but realized it was just a temporary burnout feeling - maybe I should have tried taking a break before officially quitting. In any case, I am back in Hearthstone in a more sustainable manner and this series should be good for the long term.
Beast Druid got a lot of support in the latest expansion, and a midrange beast druid with a lot of card draw, board refill, tempo swings, and board buffs has become a reality. The old, long forgotten card from The Grand Tournament of Knight of the Wild will play a starring role in this deck, and actually feels powerful. Oracle of Elune combines with Knight of the Wild and Frostsaber Matriarch to create awesome tempo swings, while cards like BEEEES!!! and Thorngrowth Sentries will allow you to discount their cost quickly. The deck will start with a low curve to enable consistent early aggression from 1 and 2 drop beasts, and then use this early start to in turn set up powerful mana cheat. In addition, you have some powerful midrange beasts to curve into Menagerie Warden. Composting is a key card that provides refill and lets you have multiple waves of threats. Overall, if you like midrange decks or the idea of playing with beast synergies, give this deck a try!
Now, let's get into a guide on playing the deck. It's going to go through major overarching strategies to keep in mind, how to mulligan, gameplay tips on key synergies, and card choices.
This is a midrange deck that aims to take control of and win on the board. The deck doesn’t have burst damage, although your stealthed midrange beasts might be able to survive a turn and then attack even if your opponent has taken control of the board. You are going to be aggressive early on, and then use tempo swings from cheap Frostsaber Matriarchs and Knight of the Wilds and copying effects from Oracle of Elune, Shan'do Wildclaw, and Menagerie Warden to try and win the board. You do have Composting and other card draw to be able to play multiple waves of threats against control decks that remove your boards. This deck aims to win in the midgame but it can definitely have enough refill to take a control deck to the lategame and win.
Aggression - Use all your cheap beasts and beast generators costing 1-3 in the early game. You can buff them with cards like Mark of Y'Shaarj and Heart of the Wild to be able to have favorable trades and snowball the board.
Midrange - After the early turns, you should have summoned enough beasts to reduce the cost of Frostsaber Matriarch and any Knight of the Wild in hand. You can play these for tempo as well as play your 4 and 5 cost beasts. Use your copying effects to create tempo swings and cheat mana.
Midrange Beast Druid is going to be able to do well against a variety of decks, depending on the draw it can beat anything. It can win against other aggro and midrange decks on the board, be fast enough to beat combo, and have enough refill to beat control. However, it can struggle against decks that manage to cheat more mana and stats early if it doesn’t draw its own mana cheat cards.
Here is a highlight of how the deck can highroll.
If you have BEEEES!!! and either a Frostsaber Matriarch or Knight of the Wild in hand, keep all of them. Otherwise don’t keep BEEEES!!! and only keep the other two if you see another way to summon a lot of beasts early on. If you don’t have any low cost cards, and have both Knight of the Wild and Frostsaber Matriarch in hand, it’s better to mulligan away the Matriarch and keep the Knight.
Keep a 1 drop, and if you have a 1 drop beast you can keep Mark of Y'Shaarj. You can also keep Mark of Y’shharj if you have the Coin and a 2 drop beast. The idea is to drop a beast your first turn and then buff it.
Keep Thorngrowth Sentries.
Keep Shan'do Wildclaw. If you get this from the mulligan it’s usually better to play it for the deck buff, but if you happen to get an early buffed beast or Frostsaber Matriarch you can use it to become a copy of it.
Some of the main keys to playing this deck well is knowing the right time to play Composting, planning when you can play cheap Frostsaber Matriarchs and Knight of the Wilds, and effectively using Oracle of Elune. In general, like many midrange decks, you have to balance value and tempo depending on the matchup.
Below are gameplay tips regarding many of the synergies in this deck and how to use them effectively.
Oracle of Elune Synergies
First of all, you want to use Oracle of Elune to copy Frostsaber Matriarchs (which is a beast itself and reduces the cost of other Frostsaber Matriarchs and Knight of the Wilds in hand) and Knight of the Wilds.
You can also use it to copy Druid of the Reef. This can be especially good with the 3/1 Rush form - it becomes 6 damage that can get through taunts or trade.
Vibrant Squirrel and Bottomfeeder are also good targets, especially if they have been buffed by Shan'do Wildclaw.
Menagerie Warden Synergy
Menagerie Warden can be very powerful for tempo. First of all, you can play it after Dire Frostwolf (for an especially good turn 4 and 5 curve) or Colaque. They have Stealth and should survive to the next turn. You may be able to buff them and then copy the buffed beast for even more value. Copying Colaque summons another Colaque's Shell as well.
In addition to these midrange beasts, you can copy Frostsaber Matriarchs and any buffed small beasts.
The same type of things apply for Shan'do Wildclaw copying.
Frostsaber Matriarch and Knight of the Wild Synergies
Any beast being summoned will reduce the cost of both Frostsaber Matriarch and Knight of the Wild. However, it is important to note that while Frostsaber Matriarch gets the cost reduction even if it is in the deck, Knight of the Wild only gets it while in hand.
Some key cards for fast cost reduction are BEEEES!!!, which summons 4 beasts for only 3 mana (and can be played on one of your own minions if needed), and Thorngrowth Sentries. An early Vibrant Squirrel and subsequent Composting early in the game can also draw enough cards to summon multiple beasts from the Acorns it shuffles into the deck.
Card Draw Synergies
Getting 3 cards from Composting is usually good enough. However, if you think you can set up more, then try to get as many as possible without milling yourself. It often depends on if you think your current board will be cleared. Sometimes, especially against aggro decks, it’s more important to play for tempo and avoid using 2 mana to draw cards.
Some cards that can help you get more value out of Composting are Vibrant Squirrel and then drawing some Acorns on your turn with your initial draw or other card draw, Thorngrowth Sentries to summon 2 minions in one card, or BEEEES!!! played on a 1 hp minion to leave 3 bodies on the board. BEEEES!!! can even be played on one of your own 1 hp minions to create a board and get more card draw.
Aquatic Form can almost definitely draw a card on turn 3 or later. It can draw a buffed copy of Bottomfeeder as well.
This section is going to go through the main packages of cards in the deck. Each package has cards that help the deck with a specific goal. When playing the deck, it's useful to know what purposes each card serves and what other cards in the deck have synergy with it or help achieve the same purpose. This section might also be useful if you're interested in the reasoning for why each card was included in the deck.
One thing to note about card choices is that I initially tried Frostwolf Kennels in the deck but it is simply too slow and low impact. On the first turn, it’s a 2/2 which is the stats of a 1 drop. After two turns, it’s 4/4 in overall stats for 3 mana which is still not great. Thorngrowth Sentries ended up being a lot better as it is 2 immediate beast summons and a total of 2/4 with taunt for 2 mana split across 2 bodies, which you can then buff with Heart of the Wild.
Also, if you do want to play this deck in high ranked mmr, it may be worth it to tech in a Golakka Crawler depending on how many pirate decks you face.
Early Game Beasts
These cards summon beasts in the early game. Vibrant Squirrel works especially well with all the card draw you have to summon more beasts later on. Druid of the Reef is flexible and better than Enchanted Raven.
These cards buff beasts.
Elune Tempo Package
The Early Game Beasts should reduce the cost of Frostsaber Matriarch and Knight of the Wild. You can then have a lot of tempo for very little mana if you use those cards along with Oracle of Elune. Of course, a 0 mana of either of those is good on its own as well, as is Oracle of Elune which you can play with any small beast.
These cards will be playable in the midgame, starting turns 4 and 5. They include high quality beasts and Menagerie Warden to copy them. Stealth makes it likely they will survive to the next turn. Menagerie Warden can also copy any beasts (including high statted buffed beasts) from the other packages. Using it to copy a Frostsaber Matriarch can be especially powerful. Shan'do Wildclaw can become a copy of any beast for only 3 mana, in addition to having the option to play it for the entire deck buff.
These will all draw cards for you.
Midrange Beast Druid uses multiple new Beast support cards to be able to have both an aggressive start and mana cheat and tempo in the midgame. In addition, it has plentiful card draw to be able to refill multiple times. If you have a question or comment, or are wondering about a card substitution, post below.
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- 0 Aquatic Form x 2
- 1 Bottomfeeder x 2
- 1 Druid of the Reef x 2
- 1 Vibrant Squirrel x 2
- 2 Composting x 2
- 2 Mark of Y'Shaarj x 2
- 2 Thorngrowth Sentries x 2
- 3 BEEEES!!! x 2
- 3 Heart of the Wild x 2
- 3 Oracle of Elune x 2
- 3 Shan'do Wildclaw x 1
- 4 Dire Frostwolf x 2
- 5 Menagerie Warden x 2
- 7 Colaque x 1
- 7 Frostsaber Matriarch x 2
- 7 Knight of the Wild x 2