Big Druid Deck List Guide – Boomsday – October 2018

Big Druid Deck List Guide – Boomsday – October 2018

Our Big Druid deck guide takes a look at this archetype and how it has changed in The Boomsday Project meta. Our guide features a mulligan guide, play strategy, card substitutions, and goes through the ins-and-outs of slow and aggressive matchups!

Introduction to Big Druid

In a way, Big Druid has been a viable choice for the class since time immemorial, utilizing its ubiquitous ramp tools to cheat out massive minions much earlier than they should be played. Its playability varied depending on the metagame and the strength of other options for the class, and it is currently fairly well-placed as a laddering option thanks to the iron-clad shell that is available for Druid right now. It fills an interesting and specific niche alongside Taunt Druid: a good understanding of its subtle differences can go a long way.

Big Druid Card Choices

Of the two most popular builds of the deck, we chose to feature MM78’s over Thijs’ as it is more consistent in its gameplan – though if you run into a lot of aggressive decks, the latter could be more effective for you; we’ll look into this in more detail in the substitutions section. This version goes all-in on the ramp plan, featuring a second copy of Biology Project and a Gloop Sprayer to solidify its board lead.

Boomsday Project Big Druid Deck List

Deck Import

Check out alternative versions of this deck on our Big Druid archetype page!

Big Druid Mulligan Strategy & Guide

VS Fast Decks

Higher Priority (Keep every time)

  • Wild Growth – While it’s a major risk to keep higher-costed ramp options as getting stranded against aggro could instantly spell your doom, Wild Growth comes down early enough that it’s still a crucial investment in the early turn even against faster opponents.
  • Lesser Jasper Spellstone – If you leave a Flame Imp up for three turns, it will deal nine damage to you: removing your opponents’ early options is very important in these matchups, and one of the main deckbuilding questions is whether or not to include two copies of this card: the featured list only has one, making it all the more important to keep when facing aggression.
  • Greedy Sprite – A minion with acceptable trading capabilities early on with sufficiently early ramp: just like Wild Growth, it will get you closer to the promised land if you can get it out early.

Lower Priority (Keep only if certain conditions are met)

  • Nourish – The conditional mulligan keeps with this deck are much akin to a line of dominoes. You can consider keeping this card if you already have Wild Growth and, crucially…
  • Spreading Plague – …you need something specific to ramp into in order to justify giving up the board completely, a condition which is usually fulfilled either by this card or…
  • Malfurion the Pestilent – …the Death Knight, which can also stabilize against most of the aggressive openings.
  • Bright-Eyed Scout – Additionally, this card is also a viable keep with Wild Growth as it has significant highroll potential and does a decent job contesting the board when played on turn three.

VS Slow Decks

Higher Priority (Keep every time)

  • Wild Growth – The early ramp is crucial against slower opponents as well; evidently, this card is a must-keep in every matchup.
  • Nourish – Unlike when you face aggressive opponents, simply relying on this ramp bomb can be good enough even without something earlier to speed up your journey to five mana; it can also double as card draw in a pinch depending on your hand.
  • Master Oakheart – Since you will reliably be able to get this out before turn nine, and it is your main method of nuking the board state, it’s worth keeping in slower matchups even without any ramp in your opening hand. (You will likely toss back all other cards in search for it anyway!)

Lower Priority (Keep only if certain conditions are met)

  • Greedy Sprite – It works well alongside a Nourish if you lack the Wild Growth, and it’s also worth keeping if you don’t have any other ramp cards in your opening hand – it’s a waste when you have both of your prime suspects thought.
  • Bright-Eyed Scout – Again, a very nice follow-up to Wild Growth with great highroll potential.
  • Naturalize – Mostly a star against slower Warlock archetypes, but it can be important in some other edge cases as well when you are concerned about an early must-kill threat. It doubles as a mill option against the aforementioned decks too, which can be a plus.
  • Biology Project – Perhaps one of the most skill-intensive decisions with this deck is how you handle the double-sided ramp: as a rule of thumb, only incorporate it into your early turns if you have both additional ramp and a threat that you want to get out early, otherwise you risk giving your opponent mana for nothing. Generally, the best way to use the card is to “bridge the gap” between your Nourish turn and your big minion – if that’s not something you expect to be able to set up, and you don’t have other ramp options, be very careful with this one.

Big Druid Play Strategy

The real difference between Taunt Druid and Big Druid right now is in their matchup spread: this version is much more capable of fending off aggressive decks thanks to its access to Spreading Plague and the Death Knight but it packs less of a punch in grindy matchups, lacking the stickiness and sustainability that comes from Witching Hour and the Carnivorous Cube shenanigans. Plan accordingly depending on what you face! If you’re unsure what you’re up against, mulliganing against aggressive decks is a good idea: you’ll still be keeping your ramp cards either way in most scenarios but you have more time to work with if your opponent turns out to be of the slower variety.

VS Aggro Decks

The goal here is to survive until you can plop down your large taunts to block any sort of minion damage. Your tools to get there are your ramp cards – as counterproductive as it may seem to go for mana acceleration instead of removal spells, this is what the deck is good at – as such, Spreading Plague is purely a stall tool here, one that you should expend without any consideration towards a worsened Hadronox effect.

Most popular aggressive decks right now (with the notable exception of Tempo Mage) focus on minion damage instead of burn spells, meaning you should be good once you’ve set up a big wall of taunts. Once your board is too large for your opponent to trade into, don’t give them time to find a solution: increase the pressure and start hitting them in the face!

VS Control Decks

The gains you have over Taunt Druid in the aggro matchups are traded off here by a reduced amount of threats over the course of a long game. This has a major effect on the way you are meant to play these matchups – for instance, Control Warrior goes from a reliable win to a fairly difficult opponent as it only takes two or three clears at most to nullify your threats instead of the five or six you would otherwise have.

As such, hit your opponents early and hard, don’t try to pace yourself as much for a long game – ramping indiscriminately in the first few turns and then getting something to stick for Gloop Sprayer is very important. Set up the most problematic board early on and pile on the pressure as long as you can – Branching Paths can serve as an excellent finisher whenever you manage to gain board control, especially with large minions like these that are especially hard to remove on an individual basis.

Try to avoid using Spreading Plague if possible and opt for spiders instead of beetles for the Death Knight’s battlecry – this will help you get a better set of taunts when you eventually kill your Hadronox.  Watch out for transformation effects and Silences: since you don’t have Witching Hours, be very careful and try to avoid playing the card unless you can couple it with a Naturalize.

Big Druid Card Substitutions

As we’ve said at the start, a competing popular version (which Thijs used to peak at #8 Legend) features a second copy of Lesser Jasper Spellstone and a Swipe instead of a second Biology Project and the Gloop Sprayer, also using Flobbidinous Floop as a replacement for Tyrantus. The latter can sometimes be a complete waste as it can get pulled by Master Oakheart, but it can also grant you a crucial extra wave of threats (specifically via turning into Hadronox) if you play your cards right.

Deck Import

This iteration is a bit less consistent in getting out massive minions early but has a better chance against aggressive opponents; since the metagame is fairly varied right now, pushing your own gameplan to the limit might be more beneficial, but if you’re encountering a lot of decks like Odd Rogue, Zoo or Tempo Mage, you should consider these changes. Additionally, certain variants also include a single copy of Ultimate Infestation to make sure you don’t run dry: that means you give up on Floop or Tyrantus, but it could be worth considering if the meta tilts towards the slower side.

Yellorambo

Luci Kelemen is an avid strategy gamer and writer who has been following Hearthstone ever since its inception. His content has previously appeared on HearthstonePlayers and Tempo/Storm's site.

Check out Yellorambo on Twitter!

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One Comment

  1. RandomDude
    September 14, 2018 at 5:02 am

    The game plan is fairly inconsistent. Very susceptible to unlucky draw, if you get the combo pieces out of order, the Oakheart play basically falls apart. I also run two Mountain Giants instead of the Scouts, which can loose you the game on the spot (5 mana Naturalize, anyone?).

    But when it *does* work, wooo, Malfurion Almighty. 5 minions, 2 taunts and Ysera (giving 2 dream cards per turn) on the board @T5 in one move can’t be frowned on. Won a bunch of games with Ysera Awakens alone.