Our Midrange/Hybrid Hunter deck list guide for the Kobolds and Catacombs expansion features the best deck list for the archetype. This guide includes Mulligans, Gameplay Strategy, Card Substitutions, and Combos/Synergies!
Midrange Hunter has been around since the beginning of constructed Hearthstone. The archetype has had its ups-and-downs, but has often been Hunter’s best option in many metas. In general, Midrange Hunter looks to get off to an aggressive start with early minion pressure. Typically, this strategy is weak to board clears, but the high end of the curve is enough for Midrange Hunter to continue pumping out damage.
Update: Kobolds and Catacombs – Midrange Hunter (February 2018)
Midrange Hunter is still not overly popular and the nerf to Corridor Creeper is probably not going to help things. It remains to be seen how things shake out for the once powerful deck!
If you are wanting to play some Hunter and make some headway on the ladder you’ll likely be better off running Face Hunter rather than this list.
Midrange Hunter Card Choices
Midrange Hunter runs a full stable of powerful Beasts, synergistic minions, and a few key utility spells. While there are several successful lists floating around, the one referenced in this guide seems to be the most refined.
- Alleycat – Alleycat gives you two bodies on turn one that can be adapted by Crackling Razormaw. Plus, Tabbycat is adorable.
- Crackling Razormaw – While the Alleycat into Razormaw curve is the dream, dropping a timely Adapt in the late game can help find additional damage or some efficient removal.
- Scavenging Hyena – With so many beasts in the deck, Hyena can quickly get out of hand. Even following Alleycat on curve, the card can become a turn two 6/4.
- Animal Companion – When ahead on the board, there aren’t many better plays for Hunter than an Animal Companion. With a wide board, Leokk can push immense damage. Huffer is pretty EZ four damage and Misha can protect other minions. You really can’t lose.
- Bearshark – More than just a meme, Bearshark is a nightmare for removal-heavy control decks.
- Eaglehorn Bow – For a deck that relies on snowballing a board presence, being able to protect minions is critical. Bow offers opportunities for massive tempo gains, allowing you to continue piling on the aggression.
- Kill Command – After hurling a barrage of minions at your opponent’s face, it’s always helpful to have some reach damage to end games before (or after) losing the board. Kill Command also offers an effective removal option for high priority targets.
- Unleash the Hounds – Hunter struggles when the opponent is able to gain control of the board. Unleash provides a means of swinging the board back in your favor or punishing token decks when paired with Scavenging Hyena.
- Flanking Strike – Great tempo tool when you have a target for it, but can be a bit slow. This card is pretty replaceable, and you might want to run Spellbreaker instead due to Cubelock.
- Houndmaster – Landing the buff from Houndmaster can solidify an already favorable minion presence or swing the board back in your favor. Midrange Hunter runs more than enough beasts to justify the four drop.
- Savannah Highmane – An old adage in Hearthstone is that if Highmane hits the face, the Hunter wins. While not always the case, it is still often true.
- Dire Mole – Strong stats for a 1-drop and the Beast tag makes this a great target for Crackling Razormaw.
- Dire Wolf Alpha – Dire Wolf can make for some massive swing turns when paired with Unleash the Hounds. The card also offers another decent followup to an Alleycat opening.
- Bonemare – Great for closing out the game with extra damage or walling off some of your fragile minions. Your turn 6 Savannah Highmane usually sets up at least one target for the undead horse.
- Corridor Creeper – One of the best cards to come out of Kobolds. Creeper works great with your various small minions and has good syenrgy with Unleash the Hounds.
Midrange Hunter Tech Card Considerations
Despite being a fairly tight list, there are a few flex spot in the deck that can be rotated out to adjust to shifts in the meta. More than any other class, Hunter can justify the inclusion of crabs thanks to the Beast tag.
- Hungry Crab – Had a good run when Murloc Paladin was absolutely all over the ladder, but now there’s so many different decks that it isn’t worth teching in the Hungry Crab.
- Golakka Crawler – Pirates are very popular right now which makes this a much better option than Hungry Crab and could easily replace Dire Wolf Alpha.
- Kindly Grandmother – Good card, but might be a bit too slow. Also, it’s really weak to Potion of Madness and there’s a lot of Priest on the ladder.
- Hunter's Mark – Better if you are running the Pirate Package + Candleshot, but is a good option if you are running into a lot of big taunts.
- Patches the Pirate + Southsea Deckhand – Very solid and could easily be added to this deck because of how it pairs with Corridor Creeper. However, this deck does seek to hold the board into the mid-game and you can do that without these cards. You have enough tokens and small minions to make Creeper cheap early without the Pirates.
- Spellbreaker – A very good meta choice against Cubelock currently. Might be worth slotting in one for a Flanking Shot that can be kind of awkward and slow at times.
Midrange Hunter Mulligan Strategy & Guide
The mulligan section into two parts – against fast decks and against slow decks. Fast decks are generally the Aggro decks (e.g. Pirate Warrior) or high tempo Midrange decks (e.g. Midrange Hunter). Slow decks are slower Midrange and Control decks.
VS Fast Decks
Higher Priority (keep every time):
- Alleycat – Against any deck, you really want to have something in play on turn 1. Spreading your one drops into two bodies is especially helpful against aggressive decks to line up value trades.
- Dire Mole – Great when paired with Razormaw. The Mole is great at fighting for the board early in the game.
- Crackling Razormaw – Landing a Razormaw Adapt on turn 2 can give you the lead you need in the early game or swing things back into your favor.
- Dire Wolf Alpha – Dire Wolf is a great follow-up to either of the one drops in Midrange Hunter. The extra attack is frequently enough to allow your minions to trade up.
Lower Priority (keep only if certain conditions are met):
- Eaglehorn Bow – While it’s not ideal to take extra damage against Aggro decks, Bow can help you protect your board position and reduce the long-term damage output from your opponent.
- Animal Companion – Animal Companion on turn 3 is usually very good, you really want to have plays on turns 1 and 2. Only keep this card when that is the case.
- Bearshark – Likewise, Bearshark is your strongest turn three play in a lot of matchups. When facing an aggro deck, however, passing on your first two turns can be game over.
- Corridor Creeper – Have Alleycat in your hand? Well that already makes Creeper 2-mana cheaper, and if you made trades it drops even lower and could be playable by turn 3.
VS Slow Decks
Higher Priority (keep every time):
- Alleycat – Cats are almost always your best turn one play, regardless of the opponent. Keeping both copies is even reasonable in many matchups.
- Dire Mole – Good with Razormaw or can bait out a removal giving you more options for your follow up plays.
- Crackling Razormaw – When facing slower decks, you want to pressure opponents in the early turns. Razormaw can help increase the aggression of your early minions both with the body and the Adapt.
- Dire Wolf Alpha – All of your one drops are about spreading wide on the board. Dire Wolf increases their attack and can help you deal more damage or get through annoying early Taunt minions.
Lower Priority (keep only if certain conditions are met):
- Bearshark – Not being able to target a minion is frustrating for decks running direct removal spells. Against these decks, Bearshark is your best turn three play, but you want to have a one and two as well.
- Animal Companion – Animal Companion is better in slower matchups, but you still really want cards to play in the turns before you summon Huffer.
- Scavenging Hyena – Like Dire Wolf and Razormaw, Hyena synergizes with a turn one Alleycat, but is a weak tempo play if you can’t confidently kill off any Beasts.
Midrange Hunter Play Strategy
Due to the aggressive nature of this deck, it is incumbent upon the player to correctly identify whether or not he/she is the Beatdown or the Control. The accuracy of this determination can often be the difference between victory and defeat.
When facing other aggressive deck, the line between Beatdown and Control is often blurred. In many cases, it depends heavily on the contents of your hand, whether or not you are on the play and the current board state. Frequently, roles changes throughout the match, so be willing to adjust to the game state.
Fortunately, the combination of aggressive minions and a high-value top end makes it possible for Midrange Hunter to fill either role. Trade efficiently when appropriate, but look for openings to start getting damage in. In the mid-game, Houndmasters can facilitate value trades to solidify your board state.
Against Control decks, you’re almost always the Beatdown. Here, you want to prioritize an aggressive start before your opponent is able to gather removal. While an aggressive start is crucial, do not risk overextending. In these matchups, be aware of the potential AoE spells available to the class you’re facing.
Sustaining pressure is equally important to an explosive opener. Bonemare and Savannah Highmane are included specifically for these types of matchups. Landing them on curve can line up enough damage to burn through your opponent’s life total. Weaving in Hero Powers can build up enough damage over time to keep the enemy in range of burst.
Midrange Hunter General Tips
Below are some General Tips for piloting Midrange Hunter.
- Always count the damage you have available. This deck relies heavily on minion attack damage, so know how much you’ll have available on upcoming turns.
- Hero Powers are a valuable source of damage against slower decks. Include Steady Shot in your damage calculations when trying to math out how many turns are required to score a kill.
- Avoid the value traps in the deck, such as Crackling Razormaw and Houndmaster. Both minions offer reasonable vanilla stats and sacrificing tempo for the sake of value in the early turns can be crippling to this deck’s goal.
- When playing Dire Wolf Alpha and Unleash the Hounds together, each Hound represents two damage. Remember that the Hounds spawn on the far right, so place the Dire Wolf accordingly.
- Make sure that you have enough space on board to maximize value from Unleash the Hounds.
Midrange Hunter Card Substitutions
Coming in at a mere 2000 Arcane Dust, Midrange Hunter is an impressively inexpensive deck to craft.