Hey guys! Thanks for the great response to my earlier guides on Midrange Hunter, Zoo Warlock and Beast Druid. It meant a lot to me. Well anyway, on to business.
This time around I decided to present something quite different from what I have been doing till now. Today, rather than doing a traditional deck guide, I want to show you guys this effective f2p budget Priest deck. In my honest opinion, Priest is one of the best classes of which you can build a decent enough deck without shelling out much of your resources. Needless to say, this is only a very basic deck and meant for newer players. You can always add in stuff like any better finishers you might have to make it better.
This deck doesn’t use any Legendary minions, for starters. Most of the included cards are basic, common or rare. The only Epic I have included is a Cabal Shadow Priest and you can still make do without that as that as it actually only a general utility card, not one that has many synergies with the other cards in this highly synergistic deck. This deck will also be very easy to make for the players who do not own any adventures as this does not use even a single adventure card. If you do have access to adventures though, might as well add cards like Entomb if you wish to. As I said, tweaking this deck to suit your needs is totally up to you.
What Makes This Deck Good?
Now obviously this is not the best Priest deck out there, but it is extremely good for the meager amount it took to make it. Also, the major point that goes in the deck’s favor is its capability to counter the ladder environment. Aggressive Shaman decks and Zoo Warlock make up a majority of the ladder environment and this deck beats those decks with quite ease, making this a cheap and effective means to ladder up. I did not play much with this on my f2p account last season, but still ended up at rank seven, which is not bad really, as you will see.
The general strategy while piloting this cheap deck will always be getting early board control and use your resources and removal efficiently to control the game. Sometimes you might need to be greedy and it will pay off most of the times. Keep pushing for constant damage and most of the times you will be able to kill your opponent with either Auchenai Soulpriest combos or simply a huge Holy Champion. Yes, Holy Champion is important as this deck does not run that many finishers. Frankly speaking, it is quite difficult to explain more about the gameplay without taking a look at the card choices first. To make the process easier, I have included the general strategies, synergies and plays within the card choices part itself.
Card Choices and Gameplay
Circle of Healing – This is a standard inclusion. It can be used as a Flamestrike when combined with Auchenai Soulpriest, or can simply be used to heal that Injured Blademaster on turn three to get a solid 4/7. This gets even better with Northshire Cleric on board because you get to cycle it. You can use it to heal multiple cards, in turn drawing multiple cards using Northshire Cleric or simply buffing up your Holy Champion to a huge beast for a one turn/two turn kill.
Flash Heal – You can use this to heal one of your bigger minions or even your face if needed against aggro decks. This card also serves as a cheap source of damage/removal when combined with Auchenai Soulpreist.
Power Word: Shield – An extra two health for one mana is pretty good. The card cycling itself is only cherry on the top.
Northshire Cleric – This little girl contests some of the 1-drops on the board, especially if you use Power Word: Shield on it. But that is not the reason for its inclusion. It is here for the draw power. You can draw insane amounts of cards with it using either Circle of Healing or Holy Nova, making this the main resource engine of the deck.
Shadow Word: Pain – This card is standard cheap removal. Again, this card is much needed in the current Meta because of a lot of quality low attack minions. You might want to save it for a better minion to use on, if you don’t have any other removal in hand. Wasting your resources on useless minions that aren’t even a threat simply will not work.
Flame Juggler – This is probably the inclusion that might have surprised you the most. The thing is that with the likes of Zombie Chow and Shrinkmeister gone, this deck did not have that much of an early game and Flame Juggler kind of filled in that void. The choice was obvious since this card better than most 2-drops. That juggle can be game clinching. This little guy makes dealing with the Shaman’s, Hunter’s and Warlock’s early aggression much easier.
Wild Pyromancer – While you have Holy Nova too, this is still a much needed board clear for this Priest deck. This 2-drop can singlehandedly wreck Zoolock. You can deal even more damage if you manage to combine it with Holy Nova. Or you can just follow it up with Circle to boost up your Holy Champion for a massive amount of damage, or simply to draw multiple cards with Northshire Cleric. Saving it to get immediate value is definitely the better way to go, but you might find yourselves in situations where you might have to play it for tempo.
Shadow Word: Death – This card is simply too good right now, given the fact that Big Game Hunter is gone and more and more people have started running bigger minions. This is also effective and cheap removal for the likes of Flamewreathed Faceless, Sea Giant, Tomb Pillager and Savannah Highmane.
Thoughtsteal – Thoughsteal is another resource card to rely upon in case of depleting hand. Sometimes the cards you get open up possibilities of way cooler combos and insane plays. You can cut a copy for another Darkshire Alchemist if you want, since we have Shifting Shade already.
Injured Blademaster – Turn three Injured Blademaster into Circle of Healing can be a huge tempo play. A 4/7 on turn three is no joke. Playing it on turn four and using Flash Heal on it is still not bad either.
Auchenai Soulpriest – The MVP of the deck. This versatile card can be used as a board clear with Circle of Healing or simply to deal damage with your hero power or that Flash Heal. Do take care if this card is in play because you do not want to go damaging your own stuff. I have seen many people make this mistake and lose games that could have been easily won.
Holy Champion – This card a very good 4-drop actually. With Piloted Shredder gone, this card becomes all the more important. This is definitely one of the most underrated cards in my opinion. Even without any buffs or anything, it is a 3/5 that costs four, which is good in itself. Combined with the likes of Circle of Healing and Holy Nova this can easily get too hot to handle.
Shifting Shade – This new deathrattle minion fulfills the same functionality as Thoughsteal and also has a decent body.
Holy Nova – I do not really need to explain the importance of board clears in this game. Since no adventure cards have been included, Holy Nova is the only available board clear to us apart from Wild Pyromancer combos. Frankly, I would play this card even if I had access to Excavated Evil. The synergies it provides are just too good to ignore.
Darkshire Alchemist – Darkshire Alchemist is a Chillwind Yeti and a Flash Heal in the same card. This new card provides more or less the same functionality as Flash Heal. It also comes with a body, which this deck kind of desperately needed.
Stampeding Kodo and Cabal Shadow Priest – There are just too many quality minions that have two or less attack. And these two cards help you deal with them with quite ease. It is definitely recommended to run a second Cabal Shadow Priest over Stampeding Kodo if you have it. Cabal is obviously the better choice but Kodo is not really a bad replacement either. If you are extremely low on dust, might as well play double Kodo as well. Still then, Cabal should be the first Epic you should get as soon as you have dust to spare. It is better than ever in the current environment.
Well, that is just about it. Hope new players like this deck and are able to make it work. The foremost thing to keep in mind is making sure to use your resources efficiently. Being greedy is totally fine, if you know a bigger threat is almost inevitable. Let me know any questions you might have about this brew. You can always post in the comments section below or can hit me up on Twitter (ManveerS_07).