Beginner Hearthstone Deck Tech: Basic Paladin
Editor's Note: You can find this deck guide updated over at our partner site - Disguised Toast.
If you're looking to expand your collection, highly recommend going for the Classic set and Whispers of the Old Gods (Standard Format). And here are budget guides, also from Sheng, to get you started!
- Budget C’Thun Druid
- Budget Midrange Hunter
- Budget C’Thun Mage
- Budget Aggro Paladin
- Budget C’Thun Priest
- Budget C’Thun Rogue
- Budget Midrange Shaman
- Budget Zoo Warlock
- Budget Combo Warrior
Greetings, I'm Sheng, a Legend rank constructed and 7.5 win-average arena player. I run HearthstoneCoaching.com where our coaches have helped many students reach the same goals.
Welcome to my introduction to the Paladin class. In this guide, I will share with you a deck constructed completely from Basic cards — meaning these cards are all available to you after leveling your Paladin class to level 10. It requires no dust or crafting to build.
The basicHearthstone Deck strategy of this deck is to overwhelm your opponent with cheap token minions -- minions that are spawned from an ability or as part of a battlecry. While the 1/1 s generated from Paladin's Hero Power are weak, they gain much more value with the inclusion of minions like Raid Leader, Frostwolf Warlord, and Stormwind Champion. Because we'll always have the ability to put a minion on the board, spells like Blessing of Mightand Blessing of Kingsperform dual duty, giving us the ability to trade a cheap token for a much more valuable card (i.e. a 5/1 for a 4/5), or giving us the reach to finish off an opponent that is low on health.
Minions - 22
2x Stonetusk Boar
- A simple 1/1, but with an important attribute for this deck — charge.
- He'll combo with Blessing of Might, Blessing of Kings, Raid Leader, and Stormwind Championon the turn he comes into play.
- Be sure to use him only when you can buff and/or trade with him.
2x Acidic Swamp Ooze
- The best 2 mana minion in the Basic card set. Not only does he destroy weapons, but with 3 attack he’ll also trade evenly with most 3 mana minions.
2x Bloodfen Raptor
- A plain 2 mana for a 3/2. He’s chosen over other 2 mana minions in the Basic set because 3 attack allows him to kill most 3 mana minions.
2x Raid Leader
- 3 mana for a 2/2 is a terrible stat-line. This is a card that doesn’t do well when he’s thrown onto an empty board. However, he’s extremely valuable once you have two or more minions on the board, and will have impact on the turn he’s played.
- Raid Leaderis primarily used to buff our tokens to trade up against more valuable minions.
2x Razorfen Hunter
- 3 mana for a 2/3 and a 1/1 is fair, but the fact that the Razorfen Hunter spawns two minions is important. The 1/1 is another potential minion we can buff.
2x Shattered Sun Cleric
- An amazing card for tempo if you can utilize her battlecry to buff a smaller minion to trade against a larger one, or when you can increase the health on a minion so it doesn’t die in what would have been an even trade.
- As a Paladin, you'll almost always have something to target with her battlecry.
2x Chillwind Yeti
- The best 4 mana minion in the Basic card set. While he doesn’t have any special abilities, his 4/5 base stats allow him to trade with two 2 or 3 mana minions.
2x Sen'jin Shieldmasta
- 4 mana for a 3/5 with taunt is pretty good value. He also protects our smaller minions.
2x Frostwolf Warlord
- A primary win condition for our deck. Playing him with one minion on the board on turn 5 is fine, but you’ll want to avoid throwing him onto an empty board alone. Remember to play him last after all your other minions on the same turn.
2x Boulderfist Ogre
- A plain 6 mana for 6/7. This is exactly what we want at this slot. A big guy who will trade with two other big guys. He’ll trade with two 6/6 minions, and is out of Big Game Hunter and Fireball range.
2x Stormwind Champion
- The Stormwind Championis an incredibly key card in our deck. He'll make our 1/1s into 2/2s, and as Paladin you'll usually be able to buff multiple targets with his ability the turn he comes out into play. As a 6/6, he's also a threat opponents can't ignore.
Spells - 6
2x Blessing of Might
- A utility card to buff our 1/1 minions to trade up against 4 health minions. Also allows us to do a bit more damage if we're close to lethal damage against our opponent.
2x Blessing of Kings
- An amazing card that will turn your 1/1 into a 5/5. You'll want to use this to buff a smaller minion to trade against a much bigger one.
- Paladin's only board clearing card. Especially useful against aggressive decks. With board control, your cheaper minions can clean up whatever Consecrationwasn't able to eliminate outright.
Equipment - 2
2x Truesilver Champion
- Blessing of Kings, Consecration, and Truesilver Championare all incredibly valuable Paladin cards that cost 4 mana to play. Truesilver Championmay be the best of the bunch though. Often-times it's 8 damage for 4 mana which incredibly valuable. It'll eliminate up to two mid-game threats.
In general, you want to mulligan for a set of cards that will allow you to play on curve and gain board control as soon as possible.
Good cards to keep:
- 1 Mana: Blessing of Might
- 2 Mana: Acidic Swamp Ooze, Bloodfen Raptor
- 3 Mana: Razorfen Hunter,
- 4 Mana: Truesilver Champion
- Situational: Consecrationagainst Warlock and Shaman to counter very aggressive starts.
How to Play
This is a mid-range deck, not a fully aggressive deck. This means that board control is key to its success. You want to trade your minions as efficiently as possible, utilizing buffs from cards like Blessing of Might, Blessing of Kings, Raid Leader, and Stormwind Champion when you can. It’s very important to plan your entire turn before you play your cards, because you’ll want to count up how much damage you can do with all your buffs. This deck is somewhat similar to our Basic Bloodlust Shaman deck, but lacks the burst from Bloodlust. It's a slower deck, making board control even more important.
Frostwolf Warlordand Stormwind Championare your keys to victory.
- Be extremely mindful of your opponent's ability to clear your board. Common board clear cards to watch out for are: Fan of Knives, Swipe, Consecration, Holy Nova, and Flamestrike.
- If you're way ahead of your opponent, resist the urge to dump your hand onto the board. This deck doesn't have the ability to refresh a hand when tempo is lost.
Blessing of Might+ Minion
- Use this to buff a cheaper minion to trade up to kill something more valuable. You generally want to save this card until you can use it in this manner, as using it to just deal 3 more damage to your opponent (unless you have lethal of course), isn't worth it, if your buffed minion dies due to a spell. Its 1 mana casting cost is cheap, making it playable in many situations.
Blessing of Kings+ Minion
- A tempo swinging card on turn 4. It'll buff one of your minions, allowing it to eliminate another threat from the board, while still staying alive. Much better than Blessing of Mightbut more expensive to cast as well.
Raid Leaderor Stormwind Champion+ Minion
- These minions will give your other minions much more value. With two of these on the board, your puny 1/1 s become 3/x, and very formidable.
Be sure to checkout these gameplay videos to see how you can effectively use this deck. There's a video for each class. If there's anything specific you'd like clarified, please feel free to ask in the comments section of this guide!
How to Upgrade Your Deck
Over time, you'll collect more and more cards from opening Hearthstone packs. Please follow the guide below before reading the upgrade card list to understand how to incorporate new cards successfully into your deck.
Which Cards Should I Upgrade?
- Before you start, go through your deck and look at each card and understand its role and function.
- The easiest cards to upgrade are minions that have counterparts that are complete upgrades. I define a complete upgrade as a card with the same or better stat distribution and a better ability for the same mana cost. A Knife Jugglerwould be a complete upgrade over a Bloodfen Raptor. A Spider Tankwould not be.
- Replace situational minions or spells that will often stay glued in your hand until the right moment arises with more verstile minions or spells. You can easily replace Kobold Geomancerand Gnomish Inventorin your deck with Azure Drakeinstead. While Azure Drakeisn't a complete upgrade over either card, the fact that it has a better stat distribution, draws a card, and gives you spell-power makes it a card that isn't situational.
- After making a list of cards that are potentially upgradeable from the list above, you can move on to the next section!
How Do I Actually Upgrade My Deck?
- Don't rush the process! Deckbuilding takes time. Each and every card in this Basic deck was chosen for a purpose, and fills an important function in this deck. You would be surprised how much time it took me to think of each of these decks, and how long the process of tuning them took.
- Generally, you don't want to make more than one or two changes to your deck at a time. Swap out cards one or two at a time, and play your deck with the changes. Each time you draw into your "upgraded" card, ask yourself whether or not you wish it was the card you had previously in your deck. If you consistently say yes to this question over several games, then the "upgraded" card belongs.
- Repeat the testing process with more upgrades until you're fully satisfied you have the best deck you can make with the cards you have.
Respect Your Mana Curve!
- While it's tempting to throw a bunch of late game minions into your deck, it's a bad idea because you'll find that without an early game, you'll never get to late game before your opponent kills you. You want to be able to play on curve, and not have to skip a turn without having something to play.
- While this isn't a golden rule for all decks, this is what a general mana curve should look like for a midrange deck. Please keep this in mind as you swap in your shiny new cards.
- 0-2 One Mana Minions
- 4-6 Two Mana Minions
- 4-5 Three Mana Minions
- 4-6 Four Mana Minions
- 2-4 Five Mana Minions
- 2-4 Six+ Mana Minions
Potential Upgrades List — November 2015
Here are a few simple substitutions that will make this budget deck even stronger.
- 2x Stonetusk Boar ? 2x Leper Gnome
- 2x Bloodfen Raptor ? 2x Shielded Minibot
- 2x Acidic Swamp Ooze ? 2x Knife Juggler
- 2x Razorfen Hunter ? 2x Haunted Creeper
- 2x Raid Leader ? 2x Muster for Battle
- 2x Chillwind Yeti ? 2x Piloted Shredder
- 2x Sen'jin Shieldmasta ? 2x Defender of Argus
- 2x Frostwolf Warlord ? 2x Quartermaster
- 2x Boulderfist Ogre ? 1x Dr. Boom+ 1x Tirion Fordring
- 2x Stormwind Champion ? 1x Justicar Trueheart+ 1x Murloc Knight
Paladin is a class that focuses heavily on minion interaction. I hope this was a fun introduction to the class, which showcases some of the cool things you can do with the class specific cards available in Paladin's Basic set. Over time, you'll be able to include better Expert cards and cards from Hearthstone's Naxxramas expansion.
For a more in-depth view into the Paladin class, I’d recommend checking out our site’s excellent Paladin section.
As always, questions, comments, and constructive criticism are all welcome. I’ll be happy to answer your questions as best as I can.
If you're interested in reaching Legend rank, or earning unlimited gold from arena, my team at HearthstoneCoaching.com would love to help! We've provided over a thousand hours of excellent coaching to students around the world.
Want to Become Better at Other Games?
I also run RankOneCoaching.com, where our top coaches will develop a personal plan for you to achieve your dreams in other games. Personal lessons are an in-depth experience and most students improve significantly after just one full session!