Determining which Epic Hearthstone card to craft can be a tough decision for experienced and new players alike. If you craft a card and find it less useful than initially expected, the best you can get is one-fourth of your Arcane Dust back.
Our Hearthstone Epic Crafting Guide will help ease the anxiety of burning 400 dust on a single card. This guide will take you through a logical Crafting Strategy to ease the pain of Standard rotations and focus on those cards that are most likely to get the best value from your dust. For each Hearthstone Set, we provide the Best Cards to Craft and Good Cards to Craft to assist you through your next crafting conundrum.
Please note that this guide is intended for Standard players. In Wild, Epic cards have different power levels than in Standard due to additional synergies available in the format. We have separate guides for Wild cards! (listed below)
Hearthstone Epic Crafting Strategy
When choosing the next Epic card to craft, you should consider both the strength and set of the cards you’re considering. Typically, Neutral Epics fit into more decks and offer the best variety when crafted. As with all class cards, however, class-specific Epics tend to be stronger and offer additional synergy and/or class identity options.
The Best Cards to Craft are either Neutral Epics played in a variety of decks or very powerful, staple class Epics. Good Cards to Craft are Epics that are tech cards, flexible inclusions, or any card that doesn’t see as much play right now or has a high chance of disappearing from the meta when it shifts.
In general, cards listed in the Best Cards to Craft for each set should be given priority over those in the Good Cards to Craft. The exception would be if you have a specific deck in mind that is reliant on the card you’re planning to craft.
In terms of sets, the best long-term value for your dust is always going to be cards in the Hearthstone Classic Set. Barring retirement into the Hall of Fame, all of these Epic cards will always be included in Standard. Even if crafted cards are banished to Wild, a full dust refund can be expected.
After the Classic Set, the sets from the current year should be given priority. Sets remain in Standard for two years, so the current year sets have a longer lifespan than the sets from the prior year.
The Hearthstone Classic Set is the core set in the game. Introduced with the game’s release, the set still has many of the game’s strongest Epic cards. Due to their unrestricted duration in the Standard format, Classic Set Epic cards are more likely to remain playable than those released with expansions.
Hearthstone Classic Set Best Cards to Craft
- Doomsayer – Doomsayer is simply a staple Classic Epic. There was basically no meta in the last few years where it hasn’t seen any play. It’s a great anti-Aggro tool, dropping it on curve means that you very likely clear their 1-drop(s) or 2-drop and stall for a turn. Later in the game it can be used to tank 7 damage, or can be combo’d with other cards such as Mage’s Frost Nova to have a higher chance of a full board clear. The best thing about it is that if it goes off, you get all the initiative – board is empty and you can start developing first.
Hearthstone Classic Set Good Cards to Crafts
- Shadow Word: Ruin – It’s a new Priest card, added after the latest rework. It’s an AoE version of Shadow Word: Death, or alternatively Shadowreaper Anduin‘s Battlecry. It’s amazing against boards full of big minions – even clearing a single one for 4 mana is okay at times, being able to hit multiple at once makes it very powerful in certain scenarios. Of course, its power heavily depends on the meta (and how many 5+ Attack minions are commonly played), but it sees some play right now and will definitely see more play in the future.
- Murloc Warleader & Southsea Captain – While those two don’t go into the same deck, they’re similar – 3-drops from their respective tribes that buff other cards from that tribe. Whenever those tribes see common play, their respective synergies do too. Right now Murloc Warleader is a better one, seeing play in a pretty solid Murloc Paladin deck, but Southsea Captain is also okay in Pirate Warrior (although the deck is not every common).
- Snake Trap – A solid Hunter Secret, creating 3x 1/1 for 2 mana is good, but it’s even better because they’re Beasts, so have all kinds of synergy in Hunter build. Whenever Secret-based Hunter builds see play, Snake trap is also playable.
- Brawl & Shield Slam – I’ll group those two together, since they belong to the same archetype – Control Warrior. We’ve seen many variants of the deck over the years – regular Control Warrior, C’Thun Warrior, Dragon Control Warrior, Taunt Warrior, Odd Warrior, even Bomb Warrior. And each one of those has played both Shield Slam & Brawl in at least some of the builds. Those are timeless Warrior Epics that are might not be THAT good right now (mostly because Control Warrior isn’t doing very well this time around), but will definitely be playable in the future. So they’re good crafts if you want to play slow Warrior decks.
- Force of Nature – Druid has been getting a lot of Treant synergies, and even though a bunch of those have rotated out, there’s still stuff like Aeroponics, making it a solid choice in Token decks. It’s also seeing play in some Spell Druid build as another way to flood the board.
- Pyroblast – A solid finisher for Mage. While it costs 10 mana, which is a lot, 10 damage is also A LOT. It sees play in some slower “Big Spell Mage” / Freeze Mage builds that run multiple ways to cheat out big spells. Overall, it’s a good card to have in your collection if you like to play Mage class.
Year of the Phoenix (2020) Sets
The Year of the Phoenix consists of Ashes of Outland and two sets that are yet to be announced. All three sets will rotate out of the Standard format with the release of the first expansion in 2022 (most likely in April).
Ashes of Outland Best Cards to Craft
- Bamboozle – A new Rogue Secret, and a really solid one. The thing is that you really need all three Secrets if you want to play a deck like Secret Galakrond Rogue, simply because Rogue has only three of them available, so cutting even one of them is not the best idea. But even if Rogue had more, it doesn’t change the fact that Bamboozle is just good. It messes up your opponent’s trades – often leaving their minion dead and yours alive (and bigger than it was before). It’s often hard to play around, and even if your opponent does, he might be forced into attacking something he didn’t want to. Very annoying to face – which usually makes a great Secret.
- Warglaives of Azzinoth – Warglaives, while a bit underrated at first, turned out to be one of the best Demon Hunter cards. While a 3/4 weapon for 5 mana might look just like Assassin's Blade, there are two things that make it much better. First of all – Hero power. Unlike Rogue, which could only replace the weapon with HP, Demon Hunter can get them up to 4 damage whenever needed (or even more very easily thanks to all the weapon buffing cards). And another thing is the effect. Being able to attack again after hitting a minion, no matter whether you kill it or not, is very powerful. You can, for example, hit the same Taunt twice or thrice to kill it and save your minions. You can also clear a few smaller minions. What’s even better is that each hit activates Satyr Overseer‘s effect, so you can easily flood the board. It’s a great card overall and a must-have if you play Demon Hunter.
Ashes of Outland Good Cards to Craft
- Mo'arg Artificer – Interesting card – while 2 mana 2/4 is already solid, it’s not played for its body. Its effect doubles any damage dealt to minions, meaning that you can turn smaller removals into bigger ones. The card was first most common in Galakrond Warlock – 2 damage Mortal Coil, 8 damage / healing Nether Breath and – of course – Dark Skies pinging for 2 damage with each hit. It’s also started seeing play in Galakrond Priest, where it doubles the damage of cards such as Breath of the Infinite, Holy Nova and Penance. Of course, it’s also very easy to remove after, or even dies in the process, but it usually doesn’t matter.
- Warmaul Challenger – A new addition to the Tempo Warrior archetype (usually played in an Egg version now). It’s sort of a removal combined with a minion. It’s great at removing small stuff – e.g. if your opponent has a 2/2 minion on the board, you can clear it for 3 mana AND put a 1/6 body at the same time. Of course, it scales poorly against bigger minions, but it doesn’t need to, it’s still great. Then the leftover body can be used as a buff magnet (it’s great with Rampage – e.g. a 1/6 turns into a 4/9), you can use it to trade into some other small minions, draw more cards with Battle Rage and so on. The fact that it attacks multiple times also makes it combo nicely with Armorsmith.
- Skeletal Dragon – A pretty solid card. For 7 mana, you’re getting a solid body with Taunt, Dragon tag AND an ongoing value generator. The longer is sticks on the board, the more value it generates. It’s a bit like Ysera, but actually playable, because it’s cheaper and can’t just be ignored because of Taunt.
- Glowfly Swarm – Because who doesn’t like summoning a full board of 2/2’s for just 5 mana? Of course, you need to run A LOT of spells to pull that off regularly, but it’s not a problem in… Spell Druid. While the deck has suffered a bit from the Kael'thas Sunstrider‘s nerf, it’s still pretty good after all. You can easily flood the board and then keep buffing it and win the game that way. I feel like Druid will play it a bunch over the next 2 years.
- Augmented Porcupine – This is an interesting card – it doesn’t seem like much of a Face Hunter card, but it’s mostly used in those builds. The main idea is that when it’s drawn with Scavenger's Ingenuity, it’s just nuts. 5/7 for 3 mana (well, 5 in total, but still), which deals 5 damage randomly split among enemies on Deathrattle. If your opponent doesn’t kill it – you smack him with a 5/7. If he does (and if they dropped it on T3 it’s not that easy), then he still takes 5 damage. It’s a pretty cool combo, and I can honestly see some decks built around Beast handbuffing in the future that would also run it.
- Greyheart Sage – A staple in Stealth-based Rogue decks. 3 mana 3/3 that draws 2 cards is nuts. Of course, you need to have a Stealth minion on the board first, but in a Stealth Rogue deck you’re (obviously) running a bunch of those. If you want to play Stelath Rogue, craft it, no way around it.
- Underlight Angling Rod – Murlocs are the best way to play Paladin right now, and this is a staple. 3 mana 3/2 weapon which gives 2 extra cards is great. While the cards aren’t drawn, but rather randomly generated, it’s not AS strong as Ancharrr, but it’s still very, very good. You can use it to get some board control / face damage while also generating more resources (which Paladin really struggles with with most of its card draw out of Standard).
- Sethekk Veilweaver – A solid addition, usually one-of, to Galakrond Priest builds. It’s a bit like a mini-Lyra the Sunshard. I mean, it’s weaker than Lyra mostly because only spells played on minions trigger it, so you need one to start the chain and it’s quite easy to break it if you get another card. Still, it’s some nice value, and in the end it’s also a 2 mana 2/3 that you can just drop on curve in case you need board presence.
- Apexis Blast – Probably the main reason why you run Spell Mage – you get a Firelands Portal (which was already a good card) for 2 mana less. You can use it as a burn, or as a removal, and no matter what you decide you still get a random 5-drop. Summoning minions is especially powerful in a deck that can’t add any to their deck. It’s not a Mage staple in general, but if you wan to play Spell Mage in particular, you absolutely need it.
- Nagrand Slam – I really love this card, it feels very good to play. And I think that it might be even better in the future. Right now the meta is relatively fast and you often don’t have time to play it simply because you don’t get to 10 mana. But if you do – it’s great. Against faster decks, you usually get to clear some small minions, deal some face damage and build board presence. But the card really shines against slow decks. If they have no minions, for example right after a board clear, you can just deal 12 damage out of nowhere, while summoning four 3/5’s. Pyroblast what? It sees play in multiple Highlander Hunter build, but it’s not a must-have staple, so get it only if you really like to play Highlander Hunter.
Year of the Dragon (2019) Sets
The Year of the Dragon consists of Rise of Shadows, Saviors of Uldum and Descent of Dragons. All three sets will rotate out of the Standard format with the release of the first expansion in 2021 (most likely in April).
Descent of Dragons Best Cards to Craft
- Rolling Fireball – Rolling Fireball has became a staple, go-to Mage removal. And I can aboslutely see the reason why. Just like always – flexibility is the key. It can be used as a single target or semi-AoE removal, depending on what you need. If your opponent has a single, big, 8/8 minion – you just shoot it and kill it. But if he has two 2 health and a 4 health minion, you can also get rid of all of them with this single card. It’s a great value for 5 mana and has mostly replaced Flamestrike in many Mage builds. Very good craft for anyone who plays Mage (although since it’s mostly played in Highlander build, one copy is enough for the most part).
- Stormhammer – No matter whether it’s a Highlander version or a regular Dragon Hunter, it’s the strongest Hunter build right now, and Stormhammer is a big part of the reason why. A 3/2 weapon for 3 is already okay-ish. If add just a single durability, it’s great. But in practice, Stormhammer often has 4, 5 or even more durability. In many games, it will be virtually infinite, since you will drop some Dragons every turn. It’s a very strong card and if you want to play any Hunter build running Dragons, you definitely want to have it too.
Descent of Dragons Good Cards to Craft
- Toxic Reinforcements – At first I thought that it’s going to be too slow, but it turned out to be a perfect Face Hunter card. While Dragon Hunter gets an edge, Face build is cheaper and more accessible, as well as more straightforward, so there are still lots of people enjoying it. Since you Hero Power a lot (obviously, it deals damage to your opponent), Toxic Reinforcements might be delayed, but it still summons 3x Leper Gnome for just 1 mana and – more importantly – a single card. Unless they get silenced (which is uncommon), it’s another nearly guaranteed 6 damage on top of the 6 damage you dealt with Hero Power. It can stack really quickly and is a necessary card to play Face Hunter seriously.
- Fate Weaver – A Galakrond Priest staple. 4 mana 3/6 with a Dragon tag is already okay-ish, but it’s obviously played for its effect. After you Invoked twice, it’s a one-time Emperor Thaurissan effect. Discounting your entire hand (which, mind you, is usually full of cards) is a big deal. You can play some stuff a turn ealier, you might be able to fit in another card into your turn etc. If you play Galakrond Priest, you definitely want to get two of those.
- Dark Skies – A new staple Warlock board clear. While it’s not very useful in faster builds, slower Warloc decks tend to have bigger hand sizes. Since you’re using your Hero Power to draw cards, Dark Skies gets really scary really quickly. It lets you deal 7 or 9 damage on curve (going first / second), and that’s usually enough to clear whatever your opponent has. Later in the game you can use it to deal with multiple small minions or a single big minion. It’s an insanely powerful card when you’re behind on the board (because its biggest disadvantage is the fact that it hits all minions, including your own).
- Veiled Worshipper – It would be in the Best cards if we made this list earlier, because Galakrond Warlock was THE deck to play other than Tempo Demon Hunter. And a 4 mana 5/4 which draws 3 is obviously a good thing to have. With Bad Luck Albatross (not a Warlock class, but a staple in the deck) and Sacrificial Pact nerfed, it’s no longer as good as it was, but it’s still an okay deck that sees some play. Warlock’s Invoke is pretty scary, especially when combo’d with some cards like Plague of Flames, so I’m pretty sure that it will see more play in the future too.
- Kobold Stickyfinger – It’s an anti-weapon tech – instead of just destroying it, you can get it for yourself. In lots of matchups, it’s much better than Acidic Swamp Ooze, but also than Harrison Jones, becuase it gives you tempo instead of value. The problem is that unlike Ooze, if you play against a deck that runs no weapons, a 5 mana 4/4 is way worse than a 2 mana 3/2 with no effect. That’s why the card is relatively uncommon and played mostly when you face A LOT of weapon decks, like Demon Hunter (Warglaives of Azzinoth) or Egg Warrior (Ancharrr / Livewire Lance / Wrenchcalibur).
Saviors of Uldum Best Cards to Craft
- Plague of Death – Plague of Death is an ultimate board wipe. Compared to Twisting Nether, you pay 1 more mana, but get rid of minions for good, bypassing any Deathrattle or Reborn effects. Silencing everything leads to a complete board wipe no matter what your opponent might have. It’s incredibly powerful, but also very expensive – at 9 mana it comes down way after power spikes of Aggro decks. That’s why it’s most powerful against Midrange and Control decks. It’s a staple in any slower Priest deck.
Saviors of Uldum Good Cards to Craft
- Puzzle Box of Yogg-Saron – Puzzle Box has became sort of a Mage “casino” staple. It’s mostly used as a “Hail Mary” card. Once you have no other options, but you need to do something – just cast Box! Most of the time it will clear the board at least partially and probably draw some cards, maybe summon minions or cast Secrets. However, there are also decks which want to cast it as soon as possible, hoping for some good outcome (because, on average, it’s going to do much more good than harm).
- Tortollan Pilgrim – Pilgrim is mostly played in the same builds as Puzzle Box. If you play some big, expensive spells in your Mage deck – you probably want Pilgrim. You always get a 5/5 body, but you can also pull out some good stuff out of your deck. It might be a board clear, maybe a Power of Creation, possibly card draw etc. A really solid Mage card.
- Bloodsworn Mercenary – A great card in Tempo/Egg Warrior build. Since one of your goals is to damage your own minions (to get some benefits, of course), having the ability to copy any damaged minion is amazing. It’s even better if you consider it a part of the late game burst combo. If you play it together with Kor'kron Elite, Inner Rage and Rampage, you can burst for 18 damage.
- Livewire Lance – Similarly to the last entry, Livewire Lance is an Egg/Tempo Warrior staple. If it doesn’t run Wrenchcalibur (Bomb version), it plays two copies of Livewire Lance alongside Ancharrr. The card is solid – you can clear some small stuff, deal some face damage and get two Lackeys (or three if you get it from Corsair Cache) in return. The card is not insane, but it’s the best cheap weapon Warrior has access to (again, other than Ancharrr).
- Vulpera Scoundrel – Vulpera is rather simple – it’s just a 3 mana 2/3 that gives you a card. Doesn’t seem strong, but the fact that it only discovers spells makes it an interesting addition to slower/Control decks like Galakrond Priest. Its main strength is flexibility – you get 3 choices, one of which might be useful in a given situation. And if you don’t like any, there’s a fourth, “Mystery” choice, which adds a random other spell to your hand if you’re feeling lucky (most of the time it’s not a good pick, but hey, sometimes it might give you a perfect card).
- Psychopomp – Psychopomp is a Resurrect Priest staple. Reviving any minions with all the extras this card provides is amazing. You thought that Convincing Infiltrator was annoying? Here, your opponent drops him for 1 mana less, with Reborn and a 3/1 body. Before the rotation, it was also very common in Combo Priest, but it’s no longer a viable strategy. The card is no longer THAT popular since Galakrond Priest seems to be taking over and it doesn’t run it, but it’s still a good Priest craft.
- Splitting Axe – A Totem Shaman staple. While it’s not a particularly popular deck, more of an off-meta thing, Splitting Axe is an absolute must-have. Since your goal is to buff and duplicate totems, this is just perfect. If you manage to get 2-3 buffed Totems and then copy them all with Splitting Axe, you’re in for a great game (well, unlike your opponent).
Rise of Shadows Best Cards to Craft
- Power of Creation – By itself, the card is only okay – summoning two 6-drops for 8 mana is usually a nice play, but nothing impressive. Of course, it’s amazing if you high-roll something powerful, but you will often have to pick e.g. 2x 4/4 because there’s simply nothing better. However, the card works pretty nicely in current Mage builds for one simple reason. It might not be amazing when played for full mana cost, but you’re cheating it out very often. Dragoncaster lets you play it as soon as Turn 6, then Tortollan Pilgrim plays one from the deck with an extra 5/5 body, and it also combos very well with Kalecgos. It’s a Highlander Mage staple, but also a way to close out Spell Mage games (because you usually need some minions in a deck full of spells).
Rise of Shadows Good Cards to Craft
- Wrenchcalibur – Bomb Warrior is a variant of Tempo/Egg Warrior build, which, obviously, wants to put Bombs into the opponent’s deck. And Wrenchcalibur is a great way to do so, especially when drawn from Corsair Cache. Then a 4 mana 4/3 weapon, which puts 3 Bombs into your opponent’s deck… It’s a killer especially in slower matchups, where it can deal massive amount of damage in a long run. If you want to play this variant of Warrior, it’s a must-have.
- Magic Carpet – Magic Carpet is a very common Zoo Warlock card. Since the deck plays so many 1-drops, giving all of them Rush and +1 Attack is a huge deal. With Carpet on the board, it is hard to lose board control. The latest, handbuff builds are running even more 1-drops, and often have very slow early game because they amass resources and wait for Imprisoned Scrap Imp to go off, making Carpet even more useful.