Spell Hunter Deck List Guide – Kobolds – January 2018

Our Spell Hunter deck list guide will go through the ins-and-outs of the potentially viable deck from the Kobolds and Catacombs Expansion! This guide will teach you how to mulligan, pilot, and substitute cards for this archetype!

Introduction to Spell Hunter (Zero Minions)

Hunter has always had a heavy reliance on creatures, particularly beasts, as part of its class identity. Face, Hybrid, and Midrange Hunters all thrive off of the strength and efficiency of their creatures, backed up by versatile spells. Secret Hunter had a brief moment in the sun, but secrets themselves lack “oomph” in the late-game. Hunter has a tendency to empty its hand quickly, with no real way to replenish those expended resources (the exception being one-for-one effects like Stampede or Lock and Load that replace spent cards, with obvious downsides). The release of Deathstalker Rexxar gave Hunters a reliable way to generate cards as a late-game engine with the Zombeast hero power. Combine this with the explosive potential of the newly released Lesser Emerald Spellstone and spells-matter cards like Rhok'delar or the hotly-debated To My Side!, and we have a spicy combination that could take the Hunter class in a whole new direction this season.

Update: Spell Hunter (January 2018)

It didn’t take long, but it looks like Spell Hunter is just going to be a flash in the pan for now. It’s still a fun deck, but as the meta has been refined the deck has largely fell out of favor to better decks.

Spell Hunter Mulligan Strategy & Guide

VS Fast Decks

Higher Priority (Keep every time)

Lower Priority (Keep only if certain conditions are met)

  • Kill CommandFlanking StrikeMulti-Shot – If turn 1 and turn 2 plays are locked in, or a Multi-Shot can be fired off on turn 3 with the help of The Coin, they can be fine keeps against aggressive strategies. Be careful not to get bogged down in high-cost cards, or the early pressure can put us at too low a life total and the opponent’s late game reach can blow us out. Hunter excels at board control in small increments, but if too many opposing creatures stick around, the Hunter can struggle to catch up.

VS Slow Decks

Higher Priority (Keep every time)

Lower Priority (Keep only if certain conditions are met)

Spell Hunter Play Strategy

Control the board with spells and weapons. Carefully manage Secrets to power up Eaglehorn Bow and Lesser Emerald Spellstone.  Generate fresh resources with Deathstalker Rexxar and Rhok'delar to close the game.

Vs Aggro

Keep the board clear and preserve our life total as best we can. To that end, use every resource available to kill opposing minions. Sometimes that means using a Kill Command on Southsea Captain or trading a precious Huffer for Kor'kron Elite. Try to hold at least one charge of Eaglehorn Bow to recharge with a triggered secret, and do not be afraid to use Lesser Emerald Spellstone for three or even two wolves in order to manage the board. The opponent may hold back to prevent triggering our secrets; punish this behavior by looking for opportunities to chip away with hero power while also deploying answers in the form of secrets or weapons. Hero power activations are our most consistent form of damage, so plugging away for several turns before deploying Greater Emerald Spellstone or To My Side! will make closing the game much easier. Deathstalker Rexxar‘s board clearing ability and armor gain are the best tools in his kit for the aggressive matchup, though the potential to churn out beefy Taunt minions should not be overlooked. Rhok'delar frequently gives tools like Explosive Shot and Arcane Shot to help clean up pesky boards, and this recharging potential means that early resources can be expended somewhat freely. Try to wait until turn 8 or turn 9 to use the powerful weapon so that some mana is available to cast one or more cheap spells.

Vs Control

Fortunately for us, managing the board is much easier when our opponent is not committing much. Unfortunately, much of our deck plays poorly against decks that never commit to the board until late in the game. Eaglehorn Bow is on damage duty, and it can be correct to leave opposing minions on board to trigger secrets and give additional durability charges. We need to be the aggressor in this matchup, as the hard control decks will have a more potent top-end, so hero power early and often. Cards that generate minions for us are best, so Lesser Emerald Spellstone, Animal Companion, To My Side!, and Deathstalker Rexxar are high priority. Deadly Shot is our best answer to big minions that are hard to burn down, and Rhok'delar can give access to a wealth of high-powered board control effects (and two charges of 4 damage is nothing to sneeze at), but generally once the opponent starts putting out creatures with 8s in their stat lines, the going gets tough for the Hunter player. Kill Command converts to face damage in a pinch, and Flanking Strike and Cat Trick can put bodies on the board, necessitating board clear effects from our opponent that, in turn, open up the way for Greater Emerald Spellstone to take over the game. Deathstalker Rexxar is the best way to pivot into late game, and changing to a strategy of one-per-turn, must-answer threats is a way to overwhelm the opponent’s resources. Remember to count our minion costs, and try to activate the Zombeast hero power before deploying our threat for the turn. Grab Bloodworm if it comes up, as Lifesteal is an incredible effect for a class that otherwise does not have much in the way of life-gain effects.

Spell Hunter Card Substitutions

Deathstalker Rexxar and Rhok'delar are both necessary tools. Spell Hunter often goes to the late game, and needs a way to generate cards in order to close the game. Lesser Emerald Spellstone is incredible, and a full complement of Secrets is necessary to help it reach its full potential. Having at least seven Secrets seems to be optimal; I wouldn’t play less, but adjust the distribution as the meta dictates.

  • Snipe – This would be my go-to secret if I intended to change anything. Wandering Monster is one of the few ways to put bodies on the board, and Freezing Trap has found its way into Midrange Hunter enough times that we know it’s one of the best. Explosive Trap is the first to go, but it is probably correct to keep at least one around. I found two useful in these early days of the meta as many of the decks were lower to the ground, and it should not be overlooked that the opponent takes damage as well when the explosion is triggered.
  • Call of the Wild – A late-game powerhouse, I did not include the 9-drop in my deck because I played against a high percentage of aggressive decks. However, narrow board clear effects like Multi-Shot can be cut for more powerful cards if the majority of opponents are playing slower, more control-oriented decks.
  • Cloaked Huntress – Do not do it. It is not worth it. Not even one. It is a trap, and not one of the good Hunter traps. It will break your heart and take your lunch money. Not. Even. One. Someone was going to ask, and now they will not have to.

About the Author

Rogue Zebra has been playing Hearthstone since the release. He loves Hunter (maybe a bit too much) and the opportunity to do new things with the class has him giddy with delight. You can follow him on Twitter, and occasionally catch him streaming on Twitch (though, for the time being, his computer is in a state of exploded).

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Discuss This Deck
  1. Fye
    December 28, 2017 at 9:07 pm

    Is this still a good deck?

    • to
      December 28, 2017 at 9:39 pm

      It’s a good deck but it’s a hard climb..it’s early sucess was due to people not knowing how to play against it. You can reach legend with it but it’s very very tough…it’ll need support in the future to be truly viable..

  2. BentranceMyNibba
    December 26, 2017 at 6:19 pm

    Overrated deck like Evolve Shaman, lel

  3. lazlo
    December 26, 2017 at 12:02 pm

    short on dust any replacements for 2 to my side?

  4. lazlo
    December 26, 2017 at 12:02 pm

    short on dust any replacements for 2 to my side

  5. to
    December 19, 2017 at 2:02 pm

    This archetype along with big beast hunter need massive support in upcoming expansions… hopefully blizzard will push them so hunter has options that are competitive and viable top teir decks..

  6. hero
    December 15, 2017 at 5:35 pm

    is Crushing Wall really that bad?
    it’s essentially 7 mana kill 2 minions…. and no one expects it

    • Andrew
      January 9, 2018 at 8:09 am

      I actually play crushing 2/1 crushing walls (ever changing) as an experiment. against control it’s actually quite good!

  7. Joe
    December 14, 2017 at 9:48 pm

    How the hell are you supposed to beat Demon Warlock with this deck? Every time I play against it they have turn 6 Voidlord. Get through it and DK comes down and refills the board with taunts. It’s absurd.

    • Virilio
      December 15, 2017 at 9:44 pm

      Yes, that’s a hard match up to go against with all those Big 9 and taunts around. You can’t rush them down because they have a lot of heals and you can’t out-value them late game since DK is a thing.

      Me think taunt is cheat and taunt need nerf.(SMOrc)

      On the flip side this deck shits on tempo mage 😀

    • Varenka
      December 20, 2017 at 10:45 am

      yep,even with jade druid its hard sometimes to beat the new wrlock,if u dont ramp or dont have luck to draw ramp cards in the early game u are fucked because of the voidlord and later DK Guldan,i tried this deck its fun but it cant compete in the current meta with the other strong decks

  8. Sieger
    December 11, 2017 at 1:39 pm

    You need to use alleria for this deck because Rexxar is SMorc

  9. Virilio
    December 11, 2017 at 6:25 am

    Toxic arrow can be used in this deck to kill big minions. For those big priest/druid/warrior

  10. MM
    December 10, 2017 at 2:38 pm

    Do you really need Deathstalker here? I was short dust, replaced him with another explosive shot and it’s working well.

    • Meavine
      December 10, 2017 at 8:06 pm

      Deathstalker gives you a second win condition. Since you have no minions in this deck, deathstalker helps you pump big minions end game, or small charge ones to finish people off. So yes it’s extremely helpful in this deck. If you don’t have it, explosive trap can temporary replace it, but it won’t be as good.

  11. Paul
    December 10, 2017 at 10:27 am

    I have change two or 3 cards in the 1 and 2 slots.
    I go whis this deck 20 / 5.
    I start at lvl 18 and now im by lvl 12.

    the deck is great =))))

  12. Furo
    December 10, 2017 at 5:51 am

    Super fun deck, totally recommended right now!
    I made a small deck guide for you: https://youtu.be/_rw7k_oWcLo

  13. DanTheMan
    December 9, 2017 at 9:03 pm

    was running the Ysaarj barnes version this morning, that was complete shit.
    thankfully found this deck and now I’m winning games again…
    Out of dust and missing a few epics.
    So I made some replacements that seem strong for now

    I did not have:
    ‘to my side’ and ‘call of the wild’

    so replaced it with:
    second ‘explosive trap’ and two ‘crushing walls’
    I thought that card was shit, but it’s a Fucking Killer.

    If I am to craft one, what is more important, call of the… or ‘to my side’?

    • RightfulKing
      December 10, 2017 at 10:47 am

      Definitely To my Side. The deck runs low enough to the ground that Call is a dubious include anyway. But To My Side is actually great.

      • DanTheMan
        December 10, 2017 at 11:43 am

        thanks! 🙂 Will craft one And exclude either one Crushing probably…

        • DanTheMan
          December 10, 2017 at 11:44 am

          …either one Crushing, or one explosive trap I guess…

  14. Herege
    December 9, 2017 at 7:54 pm

    Hey guys,

    I was playing against a Warlock with this deck and I got a disappointed surprise.

    Apparently, the Deathrattle of Possessed Lackey get triggered with my Freezing Trap 😮
    So, this guys recruit a demon by having his Possessed Lackey sent back to his hand.

    Is this normal for you guys?


    • Kurly
      December 11, 2017 at 2:48 pm

      This should only happen if the Warlock had a full hand when the Possessed Lackey went back to his hand. Since there isn’t any room in their hand for the Lackey it dies and triggers its Deathrattle.

  15. Negotype
    December 9, 2017 at 2:18 pm

    This deck is super fun. My only suggestion is to replace one To My Side with a Crushing Walls. Crushing has been the difference in several games already. Super powerful removal card late game. Awesome to see Hunter strong. Great Deck

    December 7, 2017 at 7:44 pm

    if i don’t have cat trick have cards can replace it.

    • Evident - Site Admin
      December 9, 2017 at 7:29 am

      You could try second On the Hunt and an Explosive Trap. The version I just updated with doesn’t run Unleash the Hounds so that’s an option.

  17. Seething
    December 7, 2017 at 3:08 pm

    This deck is actually working out quite well. Only played 3 games so far but it just flows nicely. Was expecting a bit more resistance with it around rank 14 but it’s holding up.

    Modified it slightly to put a candleshot in and took out 1 of the eaglehorn bows.

  18. treetop70
    December 7, 2017 at 8:56 am

    With Hunter’s Mark I think the Candlestick bow could help this deck a lot. It is a 2 mana remove any weapon combo.

    • Bretton
      December 7, 2017 at 10:46 am

      That’s true, I didn’t really consider that combo! Definitely want Candlestick bow in there now, even if just for managing the first few turns.

  19. Alex
    December 7, 2017 at 12:11 am

    How about the All Mighty Yogg Saron?

    • Mndbr
      December 7, 2017 at 4:22 am

      Then you got a minion in your deck. Rhok’Delar won’t work and To My Side! will be a normal Animal Companion.

  20. MarmotMurloc
    December 6, 2017 at 5:39 pm

    I think this deck has a really cool concept, and i really like the deck design you did I for it!
    One thing though, do you think it’s worth it to include a weapon or two? At least in a more serious ladder probable version I think the eagle bow thingamajig that hunters have has really good synergy and doesn’t count as a minion!
    Just an idea though, awesome deck!

    • MarmotMurloc
      December 6, 2017 at 5:42 pm

      Whoops, my apology, I didn’t notice that you did in fact include the eagle horn bow!
      In that case, I don’t think there is anything i would change, great work!

    • Varenka
      December 20, 2017 at 10:49 am

      do u have the rhokdelar? i dont have it i replaced it with piranha launcher

  21. to
    December 6, 2017 at 4:04 pm

    Just won’t work currently.. without a board clear , health gain or armor hunter just doesn’t have the spells to make it competitive.. I really hope they follow through in upcoming expansions but I fear this is a one and done , just like freeze shaman in Kotf…and many others…the design team has shown time and time again they have ADD..

    • xRakshasa
      December 9, 2017 at 10:13 am

      This deck might seems like a control deck, but it isnt. Its actually a tempo deck where you are the one pressuring so you dont need board clear, armor or heal

  22. evdukov
    December 6, 2017 at 12:18 pm

    I think Barnes + Sharage still good here)

    • Virilio
      December 6, 2017 at 1:24 pm

      That’s a really bad strategy sir. Barnes is a minion. Stop posting your 2017 strategies with this deck of 2020.

      • Bretton
        December 6, 2017 at 3:51 pm

        Barnes is a minion, but playing either minion will sift the other out of your deck and meet the requirements for Rhok’delar and To My Side! while providing potential for an early game board to make up for the deck’s lack of board presence. It is risky, but not necessarily a bad strategy. There are certainly cards that can be replaced such as Call of the Wild and Hunter’s Mark in my opinion, which have historically not been used and I am unsure of in this deck as the most optimal choices.

        • Virilio
          December 9, 2017 at 7:48 am

          When your shitpost get a serious response XD.
          Also I though it was gonna be a meme deck but it turn out to be a really good strategy. Go figure :J

          • Mars
            December 9, 2017 at 11:04 pm


          • Dirgander
            December 10, 2017 at 4:55 pm

            Yeah I have been playing it nonstop and it’s a blast! Haven’t tried Barnes/Y’Shaarj admittedly though haha

      • Cynce6
        December 6, 2017 at 4:06 pm

        I agree with evdukov, this deck would work better with Barnes + Y’Shaarj. Remove To My Side, use tracking to get to Barnes if you need to, and as soon as you’ve played Barnes, your deck no longer contains any minions and your legendary weapon can do its thing. Also, add a few more secrets to create better synergy with the spellstone and the eaglehorn bow.

        • MarmotMurloc
          December 6, 2017 at 5:45 pm

          I think this change will be up to the individual, do they want to risk not meeting conditions on a spell in order to get a really cheap 14/15 of stats? Or keep with the guaranteed synergy?
          I think it’s real y up to the player on this one.
          It is worth it to note that old gods is cycling out soon, so maybe it should be tried before it’s wild only!

        • Kivenx
          December 10, 2017 at 4:24 pm

          well adding Barnes + Y’Shaarj will screw the hunter Legendary weapon, u wont be able to play Rhok’delar until u play Barnes and Y’Shaarj and if u have bad RNG u may draw Y’Shaarj (or play track and draw Barnes but discard Y’Shaarj) before Barnes and get screwed tempo.

          playing without Barnes and Y’Shaarj removes the RNG factor makes the deck a bit more solid less dependent of RNG


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