Our Murloc Shaman deck list guide goes through the ins-and-outs of this popular Shaman build for the Rise of Shadows expansion! This guide will teach you how to mulligan, pilot, and substitute cards for this archetype!
Introduction to Murloc Shaman
The expansion is finally out and the decks are being tested as we speak! One of the best performing decks at the moment is Murloc Shaman, an aggressive list (what else!), that relies on flooding the board early and using Bloodlust as a finisher. Although Unite the Murlocs rotated, without making much of an impact during its existance in the Standard rotation, the archtype got some really cool cards that help with flooding the board and keeping card advantage, such as Soul of the Murloc and Underbelly Angler.
Although the deck lacks removal entirely (apart from Toxfin), it focuses on minions heavily, with the goal of making the mulligan as consistent as possible, since you want to flood the board during the first couple of turns to have any chance of rushing your opponent down. As with most aggressive decks, it is really important to recognize when it’s a good idea to trade, in order to protect some of your more valuable minions, and when you should be dealing damage to your opponent, so you can finish him off.
- Sludge Slurper: A new card, from the Rise of Shadows expansion, this is a really good 1-drop that helps you get some fuel if your hand lacks any good cards. The ability to have a 3-in-1 card, which this is in essence, is of great value to an aggro deck, that tends to run out of fuel quickly.
- Toxfin: The only “removal” of the deck, this is a new 1-cost Murloc that gives Poisonous to a frienly Murloc, helping you make a really favorable trade or get rid of an annoying taunt.
- Soul of the Murloc: One of the two spells of the deck, this is a weaker Soul of the Forest, but at two mana, it is more powerful, because of the ability to cast it earlier and its synergy with Murloc-related cards.
- Underbelly Angler: One of the stars of the deck, this is the number one card you want in your starting hand. The combination of giving you a random Murloc in your hand, after every Murlock you play, along with its defensive 2/3 statline, makes it one of the main reasons the deck can be so consistent in the early game and usually last much longer than other aggressive decks.
- Coldlight Seer: An old familiar, this is the card you’re looking to play on turn 3, most of the time. The extra 2 health on each of your Murlocs makes them moderately resistant to AoE or trading, helping your minions stick to the board. You can also keep Coldlight Seer in your hand and use it to follow up on a Soul of the Forest board, since the 1/1s it leaves are pretty vulnerable on their own.
- Murloc Tastyfin: Although paying 4 mana for a 3/2 is really bad for an aggressive deck, it helps refill your hand with threats as the only card draw in the list. In most situations, by turns 4-5 the game should be decided for the most part, but if it;s not, Murloc Tastyfin helps you close the game.
- Scargil: A new Legendary Murloc! Even though almost nothing can compare to the closing power of Old Murk-Eye, Scargil guarantees a full board for next turn, if he goes unanswered. Combining him with Underbelly Angler just spirals things out of control, with near-infinite murloc value!
- Bloodlust: This is your closer. Any small amount of minions can be amplified by a lot, so any board you manage to stick becomes immediately 3x more dangerous.
There are no notable differences in the mulligan for fast and slow decks, since your main concern is to get on the board on turn 1 and stay there. You should generally be looking for cheap stuff, but if you already feel you have 1-2 good minions to open with, look for a Soul of the Murloc, just to safeguard the board from AoE. Other than that, if you are on the coin, getting an Underbelly Angler is essential, so mulligan hard for it.
- Underbelly Angler, Murloc Tidecaller, Sludge Slurper, Murloc Tidehunter, Soul of the Murloc, Coldlight Seer, Scargil
Main Goal and Strategy
This is a really aggressive list, that focuses solely on flooding the board early and using Soul of the Murloc to stick the board and Bloodlust to close the game. Other than those two, the deck lacks any other spells, although a case could be made to include a couple of Lightning Bolts and even a Zap!. Due to the high number of minions that the deck runs, the early game is pretty consistent and you’re gonna be looking for the same cards, no matter the matchup. One key card you want to get some use out of is Underbelly Angler, which you can usually coin out on the first turn, if you’re going second. It will be almost impossible to remove on turn two most of the time (unless you run into a Priest that happens to run Shadow Word: Pain), which will allow you to develop 1-2 minions to get Murlocs in your hand and protect it the next turn. A lot of early-game removal left Standard with the rotation, so don’t be afraid to go wide, especially if you can cast a Soul of the Murloc before turn 5, which is where most of the AoE starts to appear. Another card to keep in mind is Scargil, which you want to drop on an empty board early on, if you can afford it. If you can’t, you could look to save him and an Underbelly Angler for a hand-refilling turn later on, in case your board gets wiped over and over again.