Evolve Shaman Deck List Guide – Uldum Doom – October 2019

Evolve Shaman Deck List Guide – Uldum Doom – October 2019

Our Evolve Shaman deck list guide goes through the ins-and-outs of this versatile Shaman build for the Saviors of Uldum expansion! This guide will teach you how to mulligan, pilot, and substitute cards for this archetype!

Introduction to Evolve Shaman

Since the release of Saviors of Uldum, Shaman has been rolling over the tier lists, mainly thanks to the new quest Corrupt the Waters. However, several archetypes have experienced very active redevelopment.

With Doom in the Tomb, Hearthstone’s first Wild event that reintroduced a total of 23 “archived” cards back into Standard, another infamous Shaman list makes it way back to the top: Evolve Shaman. Back in Whispers of the Old Gods, both Evolve and Thing from Below built the backbone for this board-centric Shaman archetype, and for the rest of the expansion those two value heavy-hitters have been thrown back into the card collection.

In this deck guide we look into the classic playstyle of Evolve Shaman that meshs perfectly with several new minion additions such as Desert Hare or Former Champ, focussing on ongoing minion pressure and heavy board swings.

Evolve Shaman Deck List

Deck Import

Evolve Shaman Mulligan Strategy & Guide

Vs Aggro Decks

Higher Priority (keep every time)

Sludge Slurper – Maybe the highest priority card to get in your mulligan in any matchup, giving you tons of versatility against early problematic board states such as Northshire Cleric or Secretkeeper.

Voltaic Burst – In the past, early Overload against aggro opponents almost always spelled disaster for Shaman; however, Voltaic Burst just pairs up so well with other cheap Shaman spells that will help you establish board control.

Lower Priority (keep only if certain conditions are met)

EVIL Totem  – Very good when you start with the The Coin, most likely rewarding you with two lackeys, which on their own can safely escort you into your explosive mid game phase.

Mogu Fleshshaper – An excellent card against aggro that synergizes with heavy board states, and even better when holding Evolve or Mutate.

Desert Hare/Evolve – Similar to control matchups, this combo works wonders against aggro as well – but you still have to try to get on the board earlier than turn 4!

Vs Control Decks

Higher Priority (keep every time)

EVIL Totem – Many control opponents may have immediate answers against EVIL Totem, but you have to play your odds – because if they don’t, you will gain tons of lackey value from this.

Desert Hare – A total of 6 stats for 3 mana alone looks like a solid keep. What you really want though is drawing Evolve or Mutate in your early turns so you can swing the board on turn 3 or 4, initiating your insane mid game plays.

Lower Priority (keep only if certain conditions are met)

Evolve/Mutate – Only keep with Desert Hare – as already said, this may be your most powerful combo against control decks.

Sludge Slurper – In comparison to Quest Shamen, Sludge Slurper isn’t as important in control matchups, but definitely keep it if you can’t draw into your early Evolve combos.

Evolve Shaman Play Strategy

General Strategy

On first sight, you may think that this deck serves as a budget version of Quest Shaman. But everyone who played Hearthstone back during Whispers of the Old Gods knows how uniquely Evolve Shaman really plays out.

In general, Evolve Shaman wants to get on the board as early as possible, chipping away at the opponent’s health total, only to be able to finish the game through a wide board buffed by Bloodlust.

We already featured one of the core combos – Desert Hare and Evolve – in our mulligan guide.
The true power of this combo lies within the general power level of Desert Hare, which – similar to Doppelgangster back in Whispers of the Old Gods – spawns three copies of the same minion, in this case a 3-cost card.

Another big factor in this equation is the quality of 4-cost cards, as those average into a total of 7 stat points on average, so when playing Desert Hare together with Evolve, you go from 6 stat points to an average total of roughly 21 stats, and that really showcases the potential behind this combo. Looking at the convincing math, you should never play Desert Hare without Evolve in the same turn, except when you want to prepare your board for a deadly Bloodlust turn.

And that brings us to the next general win conditions: Wide, cheap boards. Yes, Evolve Shaman doesn’t have the potential to endlessly create minon pressure like Quest Shaman does, but it still has more than enough tools to overcome several board clears or Taunt minions.

Soul of the Murloc may look like a budget Soul of the Forest, but thanks to its low mana cost it can create value trades that leaves a wide board behind way earlier.

That again pressures your opponent into playing against the Bloodlust clock. It’s one of those few cards that you can not only use to finish off your opponent, but also to bluff it into bad plays and suboptimal trades; cards like Hench-Clan Hag and Voltaic Burst support that playstyle.

Former Champ, Thing from Below and Mogu Fleshshaper build the support structure around Evolve Shaman’s cheap minion board package, making Mutate a highly valuable card to bolster your renewed board state and enable healthy value trades.

Card draw as well as card generation is mostly managed by EVIL Totem and Mana Tide Totem. Lackeys synergize greatly with Evolve Shaman by providing several cheap tokens ready to get buffed, while Mana Tide Totem can lead you to the much-needed Bloodlust draw much earlier. Also don’t forget that both cards as well as Hench-Clan Hag and Nightmare Amalgam put a discount on your Thing from Below!

The Curator is the third Wild event card that rounds out this list as it not only draws important ´minions but also serves as a great Evolve or Mutate target in the later stages of the game.

And if all general game plans fail, The Storm Bringer can decide the game on the finishing line! Turning your tokens into legendaries with insane value through Rush, Charge or card generation not only feels powerful but also decides a ton of games on average.

Vs Aggro Decks

Against aggro opponents, it is important to understand that Evolve is the highest value card in your deck. An early combo together with Desert Hare can already seal the deal, just because average aggro decks aren’t able to clear such an insane board state on turn 4; the same goes for Hench-Clan Hag.

Soul of the Murloc should be used aggressively as well; as it is with most token decks, even totems with 0 attack pose a threat to your opponent, so buffing these and your lackeys generated by Sludge Slurper up early to create another token can secure additional board control. 

In the end, both Thing from Below and Mogu Fleshshaper will win you most games on average, especially paired with your Evolve effects. 7- and 8-cost minions during the early to mid game can deal as well as absorb enough early game damage to get you ahead by a mile.

Vs Control Decks

The key to success against control opponents is to consistently refill your side of the board. Try to not overplay the board, because you don’t have as many tools to establish another one, especially compared to Quest Shaman.

As mentioned in the mulligan guide, the Desert Hare/Evolve combo gains even more importance in control matchups, just because you can highroll both your hand as well as the inability of your opponent to remove your freshly evolved minions!

Regardless of matchup knowledge, Evolve Shaman has to play its odds. Whether you hold Bloodlust or not – play it like you do! That encourages suboptimal play by your opponent, and gives you more time for better draws and plays. 

In the end, Evolve Shaman has to execute its general plan and hope to not encounter too many board clears on the way. What may sound kind of hopeless is a great way to win a lot of games in the current meta!

Evolve Shaman Tech Cards and Card Substitutions

  • Underbelly Angler/Murmy – Murlocs tend to be the perfect addition to token-centric archetypes, and the same goes for Evolve Shaman. If you want to get another value machine going in the early game, this is your package to include!
  • Sea Giant – In the current meta full of Shamans and Hunters, this fellow could become a match winner on the long run, as it has been in several meta phases dominated by board-centric archetypes.
  • Lightning Bolt/Totemic Smash/Zap! – Cheap spell removal is king in mirror matchups and against opponents like Zoo Warlock or Midrange Hunter. Besides that, they also extend your lethal reach especially against Taunt-heavy lists. Depending on the evolving meta in the coming weeks, these spells may be more valuable compared to more mid-rangey minions like Nightmare Amalgam
  • Earth Shock – Looking at high-value Deathrattle minions like Khartut Defender and Rotten ApplebaumEarth Shock is worth its weight in gold. If we see more and more N’Zoth decks, this spell will most definitely make it into Evolve Shaman!

Tharid

Julian "Tharid" Bischoff, a dinosaur in the fast-changing world of esports and self-proclaimed Warcraft expert, already created Hearthstone-related content for Red Bull, ESL and Hearthhead.

Check out Tharid on Twitter!

Leave a Reply

6 Comments

  1. Electronick
    October 15, 2019 at 1:27 pm

    Boy Desert hare/evolve got old really quick didn’t it. Really not sure what Bliz were thinking of with giving evolve to Shaman when poor Warlock got a mediocre zoo card and a meme card. I really think they should have given Warlock defile to help keep shaman in check.

    • Stonekeep - Site Admin
      October 15, 2019 at 3:48 pm

      I don’t think that giving Evolve to Shaman was a mistake IN GENERAL, because the card is pretty fun, but the timing wasn’t right. Evolve is a really strong card, and with both Hare and Mogu in Standard right now, they probably realized that it could be abused. Which wouldn’t be a problem if Shaman wasn’t strong, but Quest Shaman was already Tier 1.

      To be honest, I think that they should rotate out Evolve ahead of time and give Shaman something else instead. Because Quest + Evolve Shaman are ~1/3 of the meta around R4-Legend, and that’s not very fun.

      • Electronick
        October 16, 2019 at 6:01 am

        Agreed entirely. The synergy is just ridiculous.

        Turn 4 desert hare/mogu/ evolve into turn 5 bloodlust created by ethereal lackey – is not fun…especially when that Mogu turns into a Rag.

  2. JoyDivision
    October 15, 2019 at 2:45 am

    Seems like the featured list was added after the writing, because cards that where mentioned and discussed don’t appear in that list: Hench-Clan Hag, Nightmare Amalgam, Former Champ, The Curator, The Stormbringer.

    • Stonekeep - Site Admin
      October 15, 2019 at 5:13 am

      I put up a wrong list, then I fixed it, then it turned out that the list that was initially linked was also wrong >_> Sorry about the mess, but it should finally be alright.

      • GlosuuLang
        October 15, 2019 at 8:57 am

        The list is fixed. But now we’re seeing Mage cards in the guide, like Flame Ward and Kalecgos