Totem Shaman Deck List Guide (Kobolds and Catacombs, KAC) – December 2017

Class: Shaman - Format: mammoth - Type: midrange - Style: ladder - Meta Deck: Totem Shaman

Rate this Deck

Like or Dislike? Take a second to tell us how you feel!


Deck Import

Our Totem Shaman 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! For now the deck guide is theorycraft, but as soon as the expansion goes live we will start updating it right away!

Introduction to Totem Shaman

Kobolds and Catacombs is almost upon us, which means it is time to brew. Deck building is always going to be the most fun part of any set, and today we’re going to look at Totem Shaman. While there have been some fringe versions of this in the past, it has never quite had enough tools to come together. However, Kobolds may have given it just enough cohesion to bring Thrall back into the meta.

The Totem Shaman Deck Build

It is the time of the totem. Maybe. Over the past month or so, Token Shaman has fallen out of favor due to the surplus of strong taunt minions and powerful AOE. Yes, the AOE is getting stronger, but this list has also gotten numerous ways to play around it. It does not take a lot of bait out AOE as Shaman. Everyone is going to fear Bloodlust, and this list works to take advantage of that by jam-packing it with “army in a can cards” like Primalfin TotemKobold Hermit, and Master Oakheart. There is also the single Primal Talismans, which acts as a tech against the greedy decks you’ll see in the early days of the meta.

From there, you have two finishers in Bloodlust and Windshear Stormcaller. Lust is always going to be your first choice. However, there are going to be games where you simply don’t draw it. Stormcaller steps up into that role and helps you do something with boards full of totems. It is plan B, but it is a pretty good plan B to have. I expect you to have many totems sticking around in this one, and being able to push Al'Akir the Windlord with them is going to win a lot of games.

The curve of this one looks good because you have a decent amount of power at every step of the way. Things like Totemic Might and Primal Fusion may seem weak at first glance, but they both have massive potential in a deck like this one (especially with Wicked Witchdoctor). Buffing up Flametongue Totem or Primalfin Totem gives you real power and can swing an entire board. Even something as simple as playing +3/+3 or +4/+4 for one is absolutely bonkers in a tempo build. The only outliers in terms of mana are Al'Akir the Windlord and Master Oakheart. However, midrange lists (which this is) often get to the top of their curve, and both abilities are too strong to ignore. Oakheart in particular gives you yet another way to refill your board and punish your opponent when they’ve burned removal.

This list may seem like all of the totem-related cards jammed into a deck. And it is. However, there is a focus here. This does what Token Shaman has done, but it does it better because you get to take advantage of strong synergy between cards. This isn’t just “jam guys until you get Bloodlust.” It has multiple paths to victory, and that type of versatility is very powerful.

Totem Shaman Mulligan Strategy & Guide

This deck is a lot like Token Shaman, which means it is going to mulligan in the same way. You want to find all of your opening minions and then rapidly build from there to set the board. Tempo is king here. Always keep Fire FlyJade Claws and Kobold HermitFlametongue Totem is good with any opening minions when you’re playing other tempo or board-focused decks, and you want to keep Mana Tide Totem with the coin or a good curve. Jade Lightning and Wicked Witchdoctor are always good when you can curve into them, with or without the coin.

Your support cards like Primal Fusion and Totemic Might should only be kept if you can get great value off of them early. Maelstrom Portal is for aggro decks, or ones with pirate openings, while Bloodmage Thalnos should only be kept if you have an early portal against a swarm or tempo build. Primal Talismans is good if you have a strong opening against a slower class like Priest.

Totem Shaman Gameplay Strategy

The goal of this one is, like so many Shaman decks of the past, to swarm the board. You want totems, you want as many as possible, and you want to make sure they all stick. Then, once you have the board, you need to push and use that tempo to build into your bigger finishers. That should be familiar to people who have played Midrange or Token Shaman in the past. However, this one differs a bit in that you always want to prioritize trades over damage. Your finishers do a lot of work, and you should lean on them. That will give you the ability to pace other board-focused decks without needing to burn too much value. Clear as much as possible and force your opponent back into corners where they need to burn good cards on relatively weak boards (i.e. four basic totems or an army of freely-generated tokens.)

As mentioned, another big part of this one is knowing how to play around AOE. Shaman swarms decks have a massive advantage in that their opponent will clear weak boards. Capitalize on that by doing everything you can to set up situations that are just on the edge of being dangerous. Three totems won’t seem that terrifying to your opponent, and they won’t likely bait out a mass clear. That works in your favor because it then sets up another totem roll into Flametongue Totem/Totemic Might/Primal Fusion. That type of quick burst is what this deck feeds off of, and you need to constantly look for it.


There you have it. Token Shaman has dropped off quite a bit over the past few months, but there is some real power here. It is not going to be easy to climb into an AOE-filled meta, but I believe this deck has enough tools to do it. Your opponent is always going to be trying to outguess you, and if you can push the board correctly, you should take them down. This deck could potentially go harder into the Jade package, and their might be room for pirates or Evolve as well. Those choices are up to you, but I definitely think the full totem synergy is the best way to go with this list in the coming meta.

Use the checkboxes to compare up to eight decks!

Leave a Reply


Discuss This Deck
  1. Mart
    December 14, 2017 at 7:58 am

    The Al Akir combo is really hard to plan and make happen… you cant have a single other minion on the board if you have the 4 totems + kobold hermit. I played 10 games last night, was able to potentially get Al Akir 3 times, but I could not on all 3 occasions due to having an extra minion too many.
    Oh I also only won 3 of 10 (Not the 3 ruined games mentioned above) and only because of Bloodlust lol. Not sure how long I’ll keep this deck going but at least it was relatively cheap to build.

  2. to
    December 9, 2017 at 1:53 am

    I run a totem deck nothing like this , I have managed to pull off the combo once in 4 games. Extremely difficult but man is this fun, until this gets future support it’s just a meme I’m afraid…

  3. MarmotMurloc
    December 6, 2017 at 5:35 pm

    I mean no offense to anyone, but I gotta agree with Bellaboo here about that Oakheart. At best you summon the equivalent of an 11/12 minion for 9 mana, which is generally not advised even with the extra witch doctor effect.
    I understand wanting to include Kobold cards in the deck, but how about grumble worldshaker? Grumble can double up our good battlecries (Aya, the stormcaller, the hermit) or protect totems for us by letting us keep them in hand for a short while!
    It’s a cool concept, and I like the jade addition, but I disagree with Oakheart for this style of deck.
    That may just be my opinion though, awesome deck guide anyway, I really like how in depth it is especially for theorycraft decks!

    • Alt3r
      December 6, 2017 at 10:50 pm

      I just see way too many battlecry’s with weak stats for Oakheart to work. I am also really skeptical of Fire Fly with no elemental synergy, which I would see working better that the jade package if he still wants Oakheart in there with Tar Creepers and such.

    • BellaBoo
      December 7, 2017 at 9:20 am

      I may have figured it out – the pulls would be much better if Oakheart pulled 1- 2- and 3- COST minions (the only low roll for the cost would be hermit). That may have been the thought behind including him, as I saw that misconception on Oakheart’s discussion page a lot

  4. BellaBoo
    December 6, 2017 at 11:18 am

    I’m not quite sure as to how Master Oakheart fits into this deck. There’s no 2-attack minions, and while you can pull Al’akir, there’s also a 2/3 chance of pulling wicked witchdoctor. Not saying it’s a bad choice, necessarily, I’m just unsure

    • Adrinalin
      December 6, 2017 at 1:56 pm

      I am not sure how the “recruit” skill works but does it pull from minions in your deck? Or is it random minions?

      • MarmotMurloc
        December 6, 2017 at 5:28 pm

        It pulls random minions that fit the condition! For example, Oakheart will search your deck for and summon three random minions, except one still have three attack, one will have two attack and 1 will have one attack! If you don’t have a minion that meets the condiition in your deck, no minions will be summoned for that part of the recruit. (I.e. if you have no three attack minions in your deck, Oakheart will only pull a 1 and two attack minion out.)