Editor’s Note: With the new Standard Format in 2016 for Hearthstone, we highly recommend going for cards in the Classic set and Whispers of the Old Gods (Standard Format). Here are budget guides, also from Sheng, to get you started!
- Budget Standard Standard C’Thun Druid
- Budget Standard Midrange Hunter
- Budget Standard C’Thun Mage
- Budget Standard Aggro Paladin
- Budget Standard C’Thun Priest
- Budget Standard C’Thun Rogue
- Budget Standard Midrange Shaman
- Budget Standard Zoo Warlock
- Budget Standard 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 achieve the same.
If you’re new to Hearthstone, or just have a limited collection of cards—I feel your pain. It is often difficult to find cheap but viable decks that are competitive on the Hearthstone ladder.
When I first started playing Hearthstone, I would often go online to lookup the most popular decks played at Legend rank, and find that my limited card collection would not build them. While it was sometimes possible to substitute less important cards, there would often not be cheap substitutions for a crucial Epic or Legendary that completed a deck.
Given this dilemma, I’ve set out to help those of you with a limited collection by providing budget ladder-viable decks for each class.
- Reach Level 10 to unlock all of the Basic cards for this class.
- Complete the Naxxramas and Blackrock Mountain expansions.
- Have 1300 dust available for crafting.
Many readers have requested that I update my Budget deck series to include cards from The Grand Tournament. I have to apologize for the delay in getting these written, as I wanted to spend as much time as possible play-testing and tuning these.
Unlike last time, I didn’t set a particular dust limit to any of my decks, but rather limited myself to just cards from the single player adventures (Naxxramas and Blackrock Mountain at the time this was written), and cards from the Basic, Common, and Rare cardsets. Many of these decks mirror the top decks played at the Legend level, with substitutions for some of the more expensive Epics and Legendaries. At the end of this guide, there is an additional section that provides substitutions for cards to make this deck even stronger.
Again, the overall goal is to provide a set of budget decks for newer players that can be viable to at least Rank 10, and even below.
- Budget Token Druid is an extremely flexible deck that is built around the efficient mana-acceleration of cards like innervate and darnassus-aspirant.
- With this extra mana, a Druid is able to play mid-game threats early, making it extremely difficult for opponents to catch up. By late game, cards like savage-roar buff small token minions created by spells like living-roots or from minions like violet-teacher can finish opponents off from surprisingly high life totals.
Minions – 18
2x darnassus-aspirant — New!
- One of the best, if not the best 2 mana minion introduced in TGT. This card replaces the wild-growth that would normally be found in most Midrange Druid decks.
- In addition to accelerating your mana, its 2/3 body makes it durable enough to contest the board against aggressive decks opening with leper-gnome or shielded-minibot.
- You normally can’t expect darnassus-aspirant to survive too long, but if she allows you to ramp into a 4 mana minion like violet-teacher or piloted-shredder on turn 3, you’ve gained a huge tempo advantage already.
- Haunted Creeper lets us contest the board early and serves as fuel for savage-roar later in the game when its spectral-spiders can do 3 damage each.
- Shade of Naxxramas is a card you want to play as early as possible to reap the benefits of its passive +1/+1 growth each turn. You generally want to keep him stealthed until he’s large enough to survive your opponent’s cheaper removal spells. For most classes it’s safer to attack with the Shade when he’s at five health.
- Letting him sit stealthed can sometimes outright win you games against decks like Handlock that sometimes require a large amount of burst in one turn to play around cards like molten-giant.
- Keeper of the Grove is an incredibly versatile minion whose Battlecry should almost always be used to gain tempo on the board. If you have other options on turn 4, save Keeper of the Grove until he can silence or clear something with his Battlecry.
- An incredibly sticky minion whose purpose is to trade multiple times with our opponent’s minions. Positioning is an especially important consideration when playing with and against the Shredder as it’s possible for cards like dire-wolf-alpha and flametongue-totem to be spawned where the Shredder dies.
- Unless you’re playing around a Hunter’s explosive-shot or a Rogue’s betrayal, I recommend playing the Piloted Shredder in the middle of your board to benefit from the small chance you’ll spawn something that will buff your other minions adjacent to it.
- In our spell-heavy deck, Violet Teacher fits in incredibly well. Each of the 1/1 violet-apprentices can become 3/1 threats with savage-roar.
- Violet Teacher has great synergy with power-of-the-wild, as a violet-apprentice spawns before it buffs, giving you an extra 2/2 while buffing the rest of your board.
- Azure Drake is an incredibly synergistic card for us. He allows our swipe to become a much better consecration, and gives our wrath the ability to cycle while dealing 2 damage.
- Like the keeper-of-the-grove, Druid of the Claw is an incredibly versatile card. You can utilize him to charge an opponent for lethal, or to take out a minion that needs to die, or simply taunt him up as a 4/6.
- Emperor Thaurissan makes all of our cards cheaper, and with innervate and darnassus-aspirant we can play him sooner than most decks, allowing us to reduce the cost of our combo pieces like savage-roar.
- Another win condition for our deck, Kel’thuzad is a 6/8 minion that needs to be answered immediately. If you have any semblance of a board before you play Kel’Thuzad, he can help you clear your opponent’s board and then spawn your minions back to full health. This is especially incredible when paired with Deathrattle and Taunt minions.
Spells – 12
- Innervate is a key spell that allows us to play our bigger minions much sooner than other classes. The theory behind Innervate’s inclusion is that while it costs us a card to play, whatever minion we play along with it will allow us to make up for our card deficit by trading two for one or better.
2x living-roots — New!
- A new card introduced in TGT that’s incredibly flexible. It’s very similar to holy-smite and arcane-shot, but has the added ability to spawn two 1/1 saplings instead of doing direct damage.
- With power-of-the-wild and violet-teacher, this is a great way to build up a large board of 2/2 minions using only 3 mana.
- A really flexible spell that allows us to either play a 3/2 minion on turn 2, or buff our entire board. Synergizes well with violet-teacher.
- A very versatile spell that can kill off 3 health minions, or can cycle for 1 damage to help us draw into cards we need.
- Our primary form of burst in our deck, after building up a board of minions we can Savage Roar to trade our 1/1 minions away for more valuable minions, or for lethal damage to our opponent.
- The best Druid removal spell. Swipe keeps us in the game against Paladins, Hunters, and other very aggresive decks keen on flooding the board with tokens. Swipe can also be used on your opponent’s face for lethal damage.
In general, you want to mulligan to setup your first three or four turns. Please note that there is a distinction between going first and going second in Hearthstone, and this should factor into your mulligan choices.
When going first, your advantage is the ability to play first. In addition, you gain mana crystals before your opponent. To take advantage of this, you want to be aggressive in your mulligan to put minions on the board.
When going second, your advantage is mainly the-coin, which gives you tempo over your opponent for a single turn, and also an extra card. Depending on the nature of your deck, whether it’s Aggro, Midrange, or Control, you’ll be looking for different things.
- When playing an aggro deck, you’ll be looking for the same cards going second as you would going first. The objective is to quickly populate the board and bring down your opponent’s life total.
- When playing a midrange deck, you’ll also be looking to get onto the board early, with the caveat that you can keep a single copy of a situational minion or spell that you think may be useful to counter an opponent. This spell might be something like a kezan-mystic to counter classes with Secrets or removal like frostbolt.
- When playing a control deck, you’re looking to save the coin until much later in the game, generally when you can bring out a large late-game threat earlier than usual.
While I won’t make an exhaustive list, these are some of the cards you should consider keeping in your opening hand when playing this deck.
- 2 Mana: darnassus-aspirant, haunted-creeper
- 3 Mana: harvest-golem, shade-of-naxxramas
- 0 Mana: innervate
- 1 Mana: living-roots
Here are a few simple substitutions that will make this budget deck even stronger.
- 2x druid-of-the-claw ? 2x force-of-nature
- 1x kelthuzad ? 1x dr-boom
I hope you enjoyed my guide to Budget TGT Token Druid. For more advanced Druid decks that aren’t constrained by a limited dust budget, check out the Druid meta decks on our sidebar. As always, I’d be happy to answer questions from you in the comments section.
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.
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