Nerfs don’t happen often in Hearthstone, but Rogue’s Quest, which was introduced as part of the Journey to Un’Goro, received one because it was too powerful. After being relatively dormant since that nerf The Witchwood meta has brought back Quest Rogue.
Though not many changes have been made to the cards included in the deck, Quest Rogue has seen an increase in ranked play. The state of the meta is such that it allows the deck to flourish and quickly activate the Quest without getting punished. In past metas you would be dead before activating the Quest, but now you have some time to reach your win condition. This Quest Rogue decklist was created by Hearthstone pro Kim “Surrender”Jung-soo.
Kobolds and Catacombs added three crucial cards to the deck that allowed it to flourish. Elven Minstrel, Sonya Shadowcaster, and Zola the Gorgon gave you tools to quickly finish your Quest and increase the power of all your minions. Though these cards were added a whole expansion ago, the deck was not incredibly popular.
The main reason for Quest Rogue’s resurgence is not the added copies of The Witchwood card Vicious Scalehide, but rather the state of the meta. There are little to no OTK decks that put a time limit on the game. Rather, there are more decks that allow you the time to build up your Quest.
In order to win with Quest Rogue, you always have a bounce-back effect in hand for whatever minion you are attempting to play five copies of. Whether it be Zola, a Youthful Brewmaster, or Shadowstep you want to make sure you can get your card back in hand before your opponent can kill it.
There is also strategy to which minion you play multiple times. You typically want to save your Charge or Rush minions until after you completed the Quest so that you get immediate value from them. Instead you should focus on playing something like Novice Engineer multiple times. The card is cheap and will also draw you more cards so that you either have more bounce-back effects or more minions that will get buffed.
Quest Rogue terrorized the meta before it was nerfed, and though it may not be the same menace now because some decks do well against it (like Cubelock), it will still be a formidable deck on ladder.