It’s a whole new world for Hearthstone. With 135 new cards added in The Witchwood, hundreds more left the Standard meta game thanks to the set rotation.
We are now firmly in the Year of the Raven, so that has obviously changed things. Decks that were dominant have had the core cards ripped out of them. New archetypes have emerged to rule the ladder.
Despite all of this, has the order of power among the classes actually changed? By combining meta reports from sites like Vicious Syndicate, Tempo Storm, and HSReplay, among other factors like viability and success in competitive play, we’ve attempted to build a picture of the meta as it currently stands.
Here are where the classes stand right now.
1) Warlock (=)
Yep, that’s right—the more things change, the more they stay the same.
Cube Warlock and Control Warlock are still dominant. They beat just about everything on the ladder, and are the premier choice among competitive players too. It’s the most popular class at just about every tournament.
Don’t expect it to change anytime soon either. The decks didn’t really lose anything in the rotation. As long as Bloodreaver Gul’dan, Voidlord, and Cube are still available, Warlock is going to enjoy a prolonged period on top.
2) Paladin (=)
Admittedly, Paladin is much closer to Warlock than it was before the rotation. But it’s still the bridesmaid spot for Uther.
Paladin has been the major beneficiary of the addition of Genn and Baku from The Witchwood. First it was Odd Paladin dominating ladder, before Even Paladin emerged and took up the mantle. Even Paladin is now the more popular archetype, but Odd Paladin is still strong.
And then there’s Murloc Paladin too, the unkillable cockroach of the meta. It’s still a top deck no matter how many times it gets hit in rotations.
3) Druid (up from 5)
Druid is the only real big mover after The Witchwood. Losing Jade Idol hasn’t harmed the class at all—in fact, it’s helped it.
Jade Druid was a solved puzzle. Players figured out how to counter it and the meta moved on, leaving the archetype in the dust. Aggro Druid too was left behind as the meta developed.
But Druid has a new powerful deck open to it: Spiteful Druid. Making use of the absurd combo of Grand Archivist and Spiteful Summoner with Ultimate Infestation, it’s a hybrid aggro and midrange deck. It’s very hard to deal with. There’s also Hadronox Taunt Druid which is a useful utility tool in competitive matchups.
4) Priest (down from 3)
With Raza the Chained now gone and that nerf a distant memory, Priest is getting back on track.
Once the king of the meta, now Anduin is simply happy to be fully involved. Spiteful Priest is still pretty strong on ladder, and Control Priest is a good option for competitive lineups. That Mind Blast Priest in particular is gaining some traction, at least for the moment.
Time will tell if Anduin manages to keep up as the meta evolved.
5) Rogue (=)
Quest Rogue is back, baby.
That’s right, it’s your worst nightmare. Remember early Quest Rogue? Losing to charging 5/5s on turn five? Yeah that wasn’t fun at all.
The main culprit for its return is Vicious Scalehide. The ability to turn a minion with Rush and Lifesteal into a 5/5 helps keep Quest Rogue in games it has no right to be competitive in. The other reason is just it fits into the current meta—in other words, Valeera blames everyone but herself.
6) Mage (down from 4)
Just two players brought Mage to the Hearthstone World Championship in January. How things have changed.
Okay, so Jaina isn’t a dominant class right now. Some pundits are still deeply sceptical—but that hasn’t stopped a lot of players jamming Tempo Mage. With the addition of some good utility cards in The Witchwood the deck is still alive, despite the loss of most of the Secret package cards.
The other option is Big Spell Mage with Dragoncaller Alanna. It’s more niche, but it’s relevant.
7) Warrior (up from 8)
Do you miss Justicar? The games that went on for hours with just Tank Up and pass?
Well luckily, Baku the Mooneater has brought it back. Odd Warrior is in fashion as the latest archetype of Control Warrior, and it’s put the deck in a better spot than it’s been in ages. Quest Warrior is also playable, with or without the Odd effect.
8) Hunter (=)
Poor old Rexxar. Spell Hunter had a moment in the sun, and while some people are still jamming it, it’s a pretty lost cause.
9) Shaman (=)
Everyone thought Shudderwock was going to break the meta. For about a minute. Then Thrall was once again relegated to the dumpster.