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Bloodlust Shaman No BrM/Kara Standard Deck

Last updated on May 18, 2016 at 12:05 by Sottle 19 comments

Table of Contents

This guide contains instructions on playing Bloodlust Midrange Shaman. The addition of Tunnel Trogg from League of Explorers gives Shaman a great deal of early board presence and opens up a much more aggressive form of the deck.

In Standard, aggressive decks benefit greatly from the loss of Sludge Belcher and Antique Healbot from the format. On top of this, Shaman was also granted some great options in the form of Flamewreathed Faceless and Thing from Below. This particular build was pioneered by Loyan, a Shaman specialist who was holding Rank 1 Legend with the deck towards the end of the April Season.

1. About the Author

This deck is presented to you by Sottle, a professional Hearthstone player who plays for compLexity Gaming. Sottle regularly streams on Twitch and explains all of his moves. Watching him is a good opportunity to see how this and other decks play out in practice, and how decisions are made in real time.

2. Bloodlust Shaman No BrM/Kara Standard Deck

Our deck costs 1,740 Arcane Dust and it is made up of the following cards.

Shaman Cards Neutral Cards

2.1. Mana Curve


3. Strategy

Bloodlust Shaman is a deck that takes the aggressive shell of an Aggro Shaman build, but instead of multiple burst damage Spells chooses to add in more mid-game stability and minions to play on curve. It still plays out quite aggressively, but you are encouraged to trade more often than an outright Aggro deck due to the longer staying power and the reward from cards like Flametongue Totem and Bloodlust for successfully building a board.

You should mulligan extremely hard for Tunnel Trogg in every matchup, since the platform it provides the deck to build on is very valuable. If you do have access to a Tunnel Trogg on turn 1, you can then begin to use Overload cards to snowball your board position and push a huge amount of damage through to the opponent. Following a Tunnel Trogg with Totem Golem, or with Feral Spirit using The Coin will create a great deal of pressure on your opponent.

Flame Juggler is included in the deck as a tech choice against other common board flooding decks like Zoo. Being able to make early Tempo plays against these kinds of decks is very important and without Abusive Sergeant in your deck Flame Juggler is one of the few cards that can allow you to pick up more favourable trades in early struggles for the board.

As mentioned the key with this deck is to get yourself out of the Aggro Shaman mindset and focus more on making efficient trades where possible. You should still generally be pushing damage where there is seemingly no downside as the deck does curve out and apply pressure very successfully, however you should keep an eye out for free trade situations, such as a 2/3 into a 2/2.

Another key point with this deck is that is sometimes correct to summon a Totem using your Hero Power over playing a minion, especially if your hand is running low on resources after an aggressive start. As this is not an all out aggressive deck, your Totems start to have reasonable utility. Taunt can provide protection for your important minions and Healing can allow you to make more of the favourable trades mentioned above. On top of this, every Totem you summon will discount the cost of an eventual Thing from Below and be a potential target for a Flametongue Totem buff.

With Flametongue Totem in mind your minion positioning is important. The key is to consider what your opponent is likely to play on the next turn and work out the most efficient placement in order to trade into it effectively. As a general rule though you want your most powerful minions over to the left hand side of your board so that the smaller minions on the right can share a Flametongue buff with your summoned Totems. On top of this Argent Squire should usually be placed on the edges of your board as it can interrupt a chain of attacks using a Flametongue by surviving thanks to its Divine Shield.

In the mid-game Doomhammer will enable you to create repetitive damage over the course of several turns, and create a lot of pressure on your opponent's life total. Alternatively, you can use Doomhammer as a clearing tool if your own life is high enough in order to clear the path for your minions. This is a hugely important card since it allows you to keep pace with Control classes like Priest and Warrior who are able to mitigate some of your damage with their Hero Power. Doomhammer is also particularly powerful in this deck because it will apply a buff to any Tunnel Troggs you have in play.

The addition of Flamewreathed Faceless to the deck makes the mid-game decisions a little more complicated with this deck. If you have both this card and Doomhammer in your hand, you will not want to take the hit of the Overload on turn 4, since hitting your Doomhammer on turn 5 is so important. Instead, you should try and make a different play on turn 4 in order to get your Doomhammer equipped on turn 5 and then follow up with the Flamewreathed Faceless on turn 6.

This deck also plays far more utility cards than a more aggressive Shaman deck would. Since you are intending to drag the game out a few turns longer than an outright Face Shaman deck, you will often require answers to your opponent's board states and late-game threats. To help with this the deck plays Hex and Lightning Storm in order to allow you to answer your opponent more efficiently. On top of this, the deck also packs in extra card draw with Mana Tide Totem in order to make sure you retain resources to keep the game going.

Your win condition with the deck is multi-faceted. You can win a lot of games just through outright board dominance because of the overall efficiency of your minions, especially if you are able to stick a Thunder Bluff Valiant to the board, but if this fails you you also have the option to win with burst damage either through Doomhammer and Rockbiter Weapon or with a surprise Bloodlust which is a card people usually fail to account for.

3.1. Synergies & Combinations

Thing from Below can be discounted by not only your Hero Power Totems, but also Totem Golem, Mana Tide Totem, Flametongue Totem, and the summon from Tuskarr Totemic.

Doomhammer plus Rockbiter Weapon is a powerful combination that can set up huge amounts of burst damage.

3.2. Mulligans & Matchup Specific Strategies

You will simply be looking to mulligan for the most powerful possible early-game curve in your opening hand. Pay attention to the effect that Overload will have on your Mana however. If you do not have The Coin, a curve of Tunnel Trogg, Totem Golem, Feral Spirit will not work and the ideal hand contains a second 2 Mana card to play on turn 3. You can go ahead and keep a hand like this however, and just trust that your deck will give you something to do on turn 3.

Utility cards like Flametongue Totem and Rockbiter Weapon should only be kept if you already have the minions to support them.

3.3. Card Swaps

The tech cards in this deck should be closely evaluated in order to react to the meta you are facing. Lightning Storm can be cut or made a double copy, Hex can be cut down to a single copy as well. You will need to react to the matchups you are facing and decide which of the removal options are functioning well for you.

Stormcrack is currently included in the deck due to how common Rogue and Tempo Warrior are in the meta. These decks play targets such as Azure Drake, Gadgetzan Auctioneer, Tomb Pillager, Fierce Monkey, and Frothing Berserker which are all excellent targets. If you experience a different meta you can use a more appropriate card such as Lightning Bolt.

Doomhammer can be cut from the deck if you are facing a lot of decks using Harrison Jones. It can be replaced with a Master of Evolution, Earth Elemental, or a Harrison Jones of your own.

4. ChangeLog

  • 18 May 2016: Card swaps.
    • -1 Master of Evolution, -1 Flamewreath Faceless, -2 Azure Drake, -1 Feral Spirit
    • +2 Thunder Bluff Valiant, +1 Primal Fusion, +1 Dranei Totemcarver, +1 Stormcrack
  • 01 May 2016: Deck added.
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