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Post Nerf Jade Druid Deck

Last updated on Nov 01, 2017 at 09:25 by L0rinda 29 comments

Table of Contents

Jade Druid was so strong for the first few weeks of the Knights of the Frozen Throne meta that eventually two cards, Innervate and Spreading Plague, had to be nerfed to keep the archetype from being oppressive.

The interesting thing about these two nerfs is that both cards are still playable, and the changes did not stop Druid from being powerful; they merely reduced the power level. In the aftermath of the balance changes, several new variants of Jade Druid were created. This version is the most balanced, and the closest to the original.

1. Card List

This deck costs 8,900 Arcane Dust and it is made up of the following cards.

Druid Cards Neutral Cards

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2. Mana Curve

0
2
5
4
8
2
5
4

3. Strategy

The Jade Druid archetype looks to dominate the game by getting more Mana crystals than its opponent and then using the extra Mana to overwhelm the opponent. The availability of Mana means that the deck can play extra card draw, as it can easily use the additional cards. Although the deck will often get behind in the early game, Jade Druid is well suited to comebacks.

As the game goes on, not only does the archetype gain an advantage through having more Mana, but its Jade Idols give a degree of inevitability. The ever-increasing size of the Idols means that they are progressively more threatening as time goes by. There is also a significant amount of Taunt in the deck, with Spreading Plague and Jade Behemoth often providing ways of buying time against Aggro decks so that the late-game huge Idols can take over the game.

Finally, Jade Druid has access to Ultimate Infestation. This card is often cast while the opponent has significantly less Mana than you, and the huge swing it provides is often enough to single-handedly win the game.

3.1. Mulligan and Early-Game

In most matchups, you will be looking to maximize your Mana ramp, while playing on curve if possible. Wild Growth and Jade Blossom are the two most important cards in this regard. If you have The Coin you can also keep Mire Keeper with no other Mana accelerators in hand, but if you do not have The Coin, then you will be better off looking for a faster start in most matchups. If you are fortunate enough to have The Coin, Wild Growth, and Jade Blossom all in your opening hand, it is nearly always correct to coin the Wild Growth on Turn 1 and then play Jade Blossom on Turn 2.

If you have a lot of ramp, you can consider keeping Ultimate Infestation. Although this might seem ridiculous, due to Infestation being a 10-Mana spell, the card is so key to your plans that it has a positive influence when kept in your opening hand. Of course, it only has that impact if it can be cast, which is why having some ramp alongside it is essential.

If you feel that you will not be significantly threatened before you get to 5 Mana, you should also keep Nourish. This will depend on several factors, such as how much other Mana ramp you have in your hand, what your opponent is playing, whether you have The Coin, and how much removal you have.

3.1.1. Matchup Specific Changes Versus Aggro

Against Aggro decks, you are still trying to find ramp, but Wrath, Jade Idol, and Doomsayer become much more important cards. Your plan in these matchups is to remove enemy minions for a few turns, while looking to get your own board set up. With this in mind, you should be looking to create a balanced starting hand with some ramp, and some removal.

3.2. Mid Game

There are several themes that you need to know about in the mid-game, and you will need to learn to apply them depending on the situation and your hand. With Jade Druid, you will sometimes have a lot of ramp, sometimes a lot of Jade Idols, and sometimes a combination of the two. Learning how to improvise is a key part of mastering this archetype.

At the basic level, the idea of the archetype is to make huge Jade Idols with the efficient Jade creation options available to the deck. You should always be on the lookout for a situation where you can simply overwhelm your opponent. If you play an early Jade Blossom followed by a Jade Spirit and then Aya Blackpaw, there are not many decks in the game that are going to be able to stop the onslaught. On the occasions that you can set up these wide, strong boards, you will be at liberty to draw more cards after the board is set up and exert exceptional amounts of pressure.

Another common situation is where you draw large quantities of Mana ramp. On these occasions, the aim is often to empty your hand and then play Ultimate Infestation. Filling your hand back up while on 10 Mana is incredibly powerful. Your opponent will often be in the region of 5-7 Mana when you do this, and you will have a variety of options available to you, as well as more Mana to spend on them. These games are often blowout victories. With this deck, you should not be too worried about emptying your hand. You have Nourish, Wrath, and Infestation as card draw, as well as multiple cards that make life hard for your opponent while you wait.

In games where your opponent has applied significant early pressure, you will be looking to play Spreading Plague to slow them down. When approaching the turn where you are going to play the Plague, you should pay close attention to whether you want to kill small opposing minions that can be dealt with by the 1/5 Scarabs anyway.

4. Individual Card Strategies

4.1. Fandral Staghelm

Fandral Staghelm is a threatening card, but is often better used as a threat than greedily trying to get too much value from it. This means that it is often best played on Turn 4, where it threatens to interact with Nourish on the following turn, or on Turn 6 where it threatens synergy with Malfurion the Pestilent.

Be aware that it is often incorrect to play Jade Idol with a Fandral Staghelm in play until late in the game. This is because there are a lot of situations where you do not want to draw a Jade Idol instead of other cards in your deck. If you feel that there are more important cards to draw, then you should avoid shuffling the extra Idols into your deck.

4.2. Kun the Forgotten King

The main use of Kun the Forgotten King is to play it on the same turn as Ultimate Infestation; by refreshing all of your Mana, you get a 7/7 and a 5/5 on the same turn for no extra cost. You should bear in mind that in a game where you are struggling to stabilise, Kun's 10 Armor option can occasionally be enough to swing a game in your favour.

4.3. Malfurion the Pestilent

Malfurion the Pestilent has an easy-to-use Hero Power in Plague Lord, and so the key to playing it well is in understanding the Battlecry. The Taunt option is better against lots of small minions, while the Poisonous option is often good against larger minions. Try to work out if the Spiders will survive if you take Poisonous, and if they will, use them to remove your opponent's board.

Be aware that both the Battlecry and the Hero Power benefit from Fandral Staghelm being in play.

4.4. Ultimate Infestation

Using Ultimate Infestation is usually as simple as casting it to kill something as early as possible, and using the huge tempo swing to win the game. However, there are pitfalls that need to be avoided. You should make sure never to burn your Jade Idols because of overdrawing. You should also be aware that the best way for an opponent to make Infestation difficult for you is to go very wide on board.

5. About the Author

L0rinda has extensive experience with Hearthstone. After starting out with Arena and becoming one of the most prominent streamers in that format, he moved over to Constructed and now primarily spends his time as a caster for Blizzard, Starladder, and Dreamhack.

6. ChangeLog

+ show all entries - show only 10 entries
  • 01 Nov. 2017: Deck Added. This is the variant of Jade Druid least disrupted by the nerfs in patch 9.1 It is still very powerful.
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