Determining which Legendary 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 Legendary Crafting Guide will help ease the anxiety of burning 1600 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, Legendary cards have different power levels than in Standard due to additional synergies available in the format.
Be sure to check out our other crafting guides:
Hearthstone Legendary Crafting Strategy
When choosing the next Legendary card to craft, you should consider both the strength and set of the cards you’re considering. Typically, Neutral Legendaries fit into more decks and offer the best variety when crafted. As with all class cards, however, class-specific Legendaries tend to be stronger and offer additional synergy and/or class identity options.
The Best Cards to Craft are either Legendaries played in a variety of decks (mostly Neutral) or staples in a strong meta deck. Given their strength, they’re very likely to continue seeing play before their rotation. Good Cards to Craft are Legendaries that are less popular and possibly not as strong, but also playable in the current meta. They are usually necessary (or at least very helpful) in a specific, less common or less powerful archetype. Some of them are more of a tech cards / Legendaries specific to this meta and might not see that much usage in the future, but they still have a higher chance of being playable later than your average Legendary.
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. Of course, it all depends on the decks you want to play, your favorite classes, and so on – you need to apply your own filter to the list too.
Previously, cards from the “evergreen” Classic set were the best crafts. Now that Core Set is free for everyone, new players will find it much easier to pick the cards they want to craft. Instead of having to get all the often boring, but staple Classic Legendaries, they can now focus on the latest expansions.
Right now, cards 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 previous year. The closer we get to rotation (it usually happens around April each year), the less I recommend crafting cards from last year. For example, if it’s only 4 months until rotation, cards from the current year will remain available for a year and 4 months, while cards from the previous year will only be relevant for 4 months.
Year of the Gryphon (2021) Sets
The Year of the Gryphon consists of Forged in the Barrens (+Wailing Caverns Mini-Set), United in Stormwind (+unnannounced mini-set), as well as another expansion + mini-set combo we don’t know yet. All of them will rotate out of the Standard format with the release of the first expansion of 2023 (around April).
United in Stormwind Best Cards to Craft
United in Stormwind is the latest set, so we had less time to judge the power level of those cards – keep that in mind!
- The Demon Seed – So far Warlock’s Questline is the best Legendary from United in Stormwind, no matter if you play Wild or Standard. Deck built around is is very strong – with a great mix of self-damage and healing, Warlock can survive while dropping big threats onto the board, and if that’s not enough the build has an inevitability of killing the opponent with self-damage (including fatigue) after Questline is finished. However, at the same time, it’s one of the Legendaries that are most likely to get nerfed looking at the current state of the game (even worse – it might not get nerfed directly, but all the related cards around it making it much worse).
- Command the Elements – Shaman’s Questline is very powerful against most of the meta – it actually only gets countered by the other two popular builds (Questline Mage & Warlock). However, it’s still doing very well, because every other popular matchup is in the green. Not only it can defend itself against aggression, clear the board efficiently, but after the Questline is done, it either summons multiple big minions or burns the opponent with double spells (a simple Lightning Bolt turns into a Fireball and so on).
- Darkbishop Benedictus – Benedictus is the main activator of “Shadow Priest” fantasy – if you want your Anduin to play dirty, it’s a must-have card. While a 5 mana 5/6 is useless by itself and you’re much better off not drawing it, you play him for the start of game effect. Turning your Hero Power into a better version of Hunter’s Hero Power (or an upgraded Mage Hero Power) at no cost other than having to play only Shadow Priest turned out to be very strong and more successful than most players have anticipated. If you like Aggro decks, it’s one of the best choices now.
United in Stormwind Good Cards to Craft
- Sorcerer's Gambit – While the card is popular enough to be classified as “best” to craft, Questline Mage deck is actually low Tier 2 or even Tier 3 depending on who you ask. That’s why it didn’t feel right to put it alongside two Questlines mentioned above. But overall, it’s one of the most common decks on the ladder – especially at lower ranks. It’s pretty straightforward, fun to play and also very cheap. The plan is to cycle through the deck while freezing/clearing opponent’s board and finishing to Questline, then burning them down to the ground with infinite damage from Ignite. Of course a must-craft if you want to play Questline Mage.
- Varian, King of Stormwind – Varian would probably be one of the best Legendaries in the game right now if the meta wasn’t as fast as it is. In the right deck, the card brings insane value and a bunch of tempo too – not only you draw 3 cards, but you also play 7/7 with Rush, Divine Shield AND Taunt (in the best case scenario). Usually even hitting two of those keywords is enough to make it a much better version of Siamat. Right now it’s mostly played in all kinds of Paladin builds, because they have the easiest access to Divine Shield and play a more Midrange strategy.
- Cornelius Roame – One of the highest rated cards before the expansion was released – Cornelius is a card draw machine. It guarantees 2 cards (+a 4/5 body) for 6 mana, but if it survives, it goes way beyond that. As long as opponent doesn’t kill him immediately, he will guarantee drawing you 6 cards in total – yep, that’s a crazy number. The current meta is a bit too fast for him, but even now he sees play in some Paladin and Druid builds. And he has a serious chance of being even better in the future.
- Final Showdown – Demon Hunter’s Questline is an interesting one. While many good players swear that a deck built around it is actually great, overall stats don’t show it. Brute Demon Hunter is a very tricky build, which utilizes insane cycling capabilities to finish the Questline, play multiple 0 mana Irebound Brutes and then finish the opponent off with Lion's Frenzy. It’s obviously a must-have in that deck, but I wouldn’t recommend the deck to less experienced players.
- Anetheron – Anetheron is a solid option in Giants (Hand) version of Questline Warlock. Since you draw a lot of cards and keep a full hand very often, Anetheron is often a 1 mana 8/6, which is obviously quite powerful. It’s one of the first big minions you can drop on the board (as early as Turn 4), and a good addition to your Raise Dead pool once it dies. However, he’s pretty low on the priority list, since you can easily play the deck without him – many lists have cut him in favor of other cards.
- Highlord Fordragon – Highlord Fordragon is a solid choice in Handbuff Paladin deck – not a very popular meta option, but still a pretty solid one. Since the deck runs a lot of Divine Shields (Prismatic Jewel Kit depends on them + they work very well with Handbuffs in general), you can easily trigger Highlord’s effect a couple of times, producing some really big minions. It’s even better if the buff lands on something like Blademaster Samuro or Catacomb Guard, which benefit from those even more than your average minions. I know that it’s a common trend, but if the meta slowed down a bit, I bet that Fordragon would be even better.
- Jace Darkweaver – And finally, a staple Fel Demon Hunter card. Interestingly enough, Fel Demon Hunter is relatively popular in high Legend (and in tournament setting), but it’s nearly absent from lower ranks. The goal of the build is to play multiple Fel cards like Chaos Strike, Fury (Rank 1) (or even better Rank 2), Fel Barrage, Metamorphosis, and then repeat all of them with Jace. You also run Aldrachi Warblades + weapon buffs + Il'gynoth for some extra burst damage. Overall, the deck is pretty tricky to play, but it has a lot of burst potential and even OTK capabilities if you hit the right cards with discounts.
Forged in the Barrens Academy Best Cards to Craft
- Tamsin Roame – Tamsin, while pretty useless in the early game and mediocre in the mid game, has some insane late game potential. Copying any Shadow spell you cast AND making it cost 0 is crazy powerful if you run at least a few of them in your deck. Some of the popular ones you can copy include Drain Soul, Touch of the Nathrezim, Mortal Coil or Unstable Shadow Blast. As you can see, her main purpose is getting more removal and healing – the latter comes really handy against decks that want to burn you down. You can often clear wide boards with Tamsin and only 2-3 single target removal spells, while healing/drawing lots of cards in the process.
- Manrkik would be another “best to craft” card, but he’s one of the free expansion Legendaries. If you didn’t claim him from Barrens rewards track, all you need to do is buy a single Forged in the Barrens pack and go to the pack opening menu – he will be added to your collection. No need to spend Dust!
Forged in the Barrens Academy Good Cards to Craft
- Blademaster Samuro – Blademaster Samuro is a board clear in a form of a minion. Although dealing 1 AoE damage is sometimes good enough by itself, most of the time you want to combine him with some buffs – like handbuffs in case of Paladin, or Apotheosis in case of Priest (the combo was very popular last expansion, when Control Priest was still commonly played) – the latter gains an extra advantage of healing you for all the damage you deal. If you run a deck with some buffs, the chances are that you will want to put Samuro in – just bringing him up to 3 attack is often good enough to get rid of bigger boards.
- Cariel Roame – Divine Shield + Rush is a great combo. Now if you add a mana discount on some cards in your hand… yeah, Cariel is a great pick in certain Paladin builds. If you run Holy spells you might want to discount, you probably also want to run Cariel. Right now she’s most commonly seen in Handbuff Paladin, where she gets even more value after getting buffed (you can sometimes even run her into a Giant and kill it while leaving 8/7 minion behind). Simple, but effective. She will probably see more play in Paladin going forward too.
- Barak Kodobane – Barak used to be a Face Hunter staple ever since Forged in the Barrens came out. Not only it draws 3 cards on a 3/5 body, for 5 mana, but it also draws 3 specific mana costs – 1, 2, and 3. On 1 and 2, Hunter has some really strong cards, including Aimed Shot for more burn, while on 3 you either have Mankrik‘s 3/7 that hits face (and draws you another card instead) or Aimed Shot, both of which are insane. Mankrik on 3 into Kodobane on 5 curve is usually game-winning, but even without Mankrik, Kodobane will give you 8-10 damage worth of burn spells, making him an excellent mid-late game play.
- Kazakus, Golem Shaper – Bad news is that many decks simply can’t put Kazakus in them, because they run some important 4 mana cost cards. Good news is that your deck is not one of those, you will likely boost your win rate by plugging in Kazakus. There are some builds that love him, including certain Rogue and Priest decks. While his initial stats are very weak, the power level of the Golems you create is quite insane and can seriously win you some games (e.g. 2x 5/5 with Divine Shield, 5/5 with Poisonous that deals 3 damage to two minions clearing them instantly or even something like a big 2x 10/10 with Stealth – but the last one is a bit too slow for the current climate). In any case, it’s a good Legendary and it will most likely see a lot of play before it rotates out.
- Lady Anacondra – Lady Anacondra is a build-around card for a certain Druid deck. The truth is that a 2 mana discount on Nature spells is not really worth it by itself, given that you would have to play at least a few spells before her cost is even paid back. But there are some ways to make her work much, much better. The first one is Germination – which is a also a Nature spell, so gets cheaper. For 8 mana, you can get 3 copies of Anacondra, discounting all of your Nature spells by 6 while summoning a decent board. Now that’s more interesting – free Nourishes, Arbor Ups and cheap Cenarion Wards seem pretty cool. The other way is by playing Celestial Alignment – if all of your cards are 1 mana, discounting Nature spells means that you are able to play a lot of them for free – combine it with Gadgetzan Auctioneer and you go through your entire deck while doing A LOT of powerful things. Overall the card is quite interesting and has some serious combo capabilities.
- Mutanus the Devourer – Mutanus used to be present in most of the slower decks last expansion, because it’s a great disruption tool. Not only you might be getting rid of your opponent’s important card, but you also put a (usually big) body on the board. However, right now it’s much less common simply because how fast the meta is and that playing a 7 mana card that deals with a single threat from your opponent’s hand is not necessarily the best choice. The only highlight is that it can get rid of Questline rewards, but those are often played on the same turn they are finished. It’s rarely seen right now, but there’s a very, very high chance that it will come back in the future.
Year of the Phoenix (2020) Sets
The Year of the Phoenix consists of Ashes of Outland, Scholomance Academy and Madness at the Darkmoon Faire. All three sets will rotate out of the Standard format with the release of the first expansion of 2022.
Madness at the Darkmoon Faire Best Cards to Craft
There are currently no Darkmoon Faire Legendaries that I would consider “best” crafts.
Madness at the Darkmoon Faire Good Cards to Craft
- Rinling's Rifle – Rinling’s Rifle is a Hunter staple – the card simply does a lot for quite cheap. Hunter Secrets tend to be pretty strong, but they are also situational. For example, putting a Freezing Trap into your deck means that sure – you will be protected against a single big minion, but it will be useless against a swarm of smaller minions. Rinling’s Rifle doesn’t have this problem, because you can pick the one that fits current situation the most. With only six Hunter Secrets in Standard right now, you can pick the ones you want pretty consistently. You get two, and you also get a 2/2 weapon to deal some extra damage, clear off smaller minions etc. It’s just a good card.
- Greybough – Greybough was previously more niche, but it has started seeing play lately thanks to the Aggro Taunt Druid strategy getting more popular (and actually viable). The current meta is very low on Silence and Transform effects, so you can usually trigger his effect a few times, making it a great long-term threat. What’s even better is that thanks to the Oracle of Elune + Razormane Battleguard combo, you make it cost only 1 mana (so it also gets affected by Oracle’s text) – which means that on Turn 6, dropping those three cards together, you create a massive board that is very, very hard to get rid of efficiently.
- Moonfang – Moonfang is one of those cards that seem pretty underwhelming, but turn out to be strong in the right deck. It was Guardian Animals Druid last expansion, right now it’s mostly Handbuff Paladin. In case of Paladin – each handbuff means it gets more health, which in turn means one extra attack it survives. And the thing is that most of the removals in the current meta are based on damage, not on straight-up destroying a minion. So Moonfang is often nigh impossible to clear, making him a great threat that will stick around for a while. Moonfang also sees some play in Face Hunter, although stats don’t directly
- Il'gynoth – Il’gynoth builds were popular in high Legend before the card was nerfed (from 4 to 6 mana), then they’ve disappeared, but now they’re actually coming back in the Brute Demon Hunter shell. Il’gynoth turns any Lifesteal into damage for the opponent, and as we all know, Demon Hunter has quite a lot of powerful Lifesteal effects. Mostly Felscream Blast, which when combined with some Spell Damage and/or Mo'arg Artificer can heal for A LOT = deal a lot of damage with Il’gynoth. Current combos rely on discounting pieces with Final Showdown Questline and they actually work pretty well – still mostly in high Legend, but if the decks takes off there’s a chance that its popularity will trickle down to lower ranks too.
Scholomance Academy Best Cards to Craft
- Instructor Fireheart – Fireheart was always a simple, but solid Legendary in Shaman. One of the best things about her is that she can simply be dropped on Turn 3 as some board presence + spell discovery, but can also be held into the late game for more impressive spell chains (depending on your luck, of course, but you can usually get at least 2-3 spells from her, up to 5-6+ in more extreme cases). However, right now her late game potential is even more powerful thanks to Command the Elements Questline. Since all of your spells are doubled after you finish the Questline, discovering a bunch of them becomes much more compelling. She can help you find more board presence, removals, burn damage, healing and basically whatever you might need at the moment. Or, in some cases, help you finish the Questline by Discovering some Overload spells.
- Mindrender Illucia – Illucia is one of the most controversial cards in the game ever since she was released. Her ability to disrupt the opponent was always very powerful, and nearly always hated by the player on receiving end. However, while annoying in Control Priest, she’s straight up broken in many situations when playing Shadow Priest. Unlike Control, as a Shadow you run out of cards very quickly. In some cases, you might end up topdecking mode as soon as Turn 4-5. Normally that’s bad, but it’s actually great for Illucia. If you tempo out in the early game and fill the board with your minions, you’re asking to get yourself AoE’d. But if you drop Illucia after emptying your hand, you now give your opponent… nothing. You don’t care much about cards in their hand – often you won’t even “steal” anything. But you gain one free turn of dealing damage, which is often enough to just win the game. The only thing opponent can do is playing the topdecked card – which more than often is useless in their situation (Void Shard is the only exception, but depending on how big your board is, that’s probably not going to save them).
Scholomance Academy Good Cards to Craft
- Disciplinarian Gandling – While Illucia is played in nearly every single Shadow Priest build, Gandling is present in roughly half of them. There are two Shadow Priest strategies you can take – one of them is based around Gandling + cheap minions. You actually run 0 cost stuff like Murloc Tinyfin and Desk Imp + a lot of other 1 cost cards, in order to drop them together with Gandling. It’s a massive tempo push – e.g. playing Gandling + two 0 mana minions creates a board of 3/6 + 2x 4/4 for just 4 mana. 6 health minion is also a bit difficult to remove in the current climate, so he works pretty well. However, unlike Illucia, you can still pick a build that doesn’t run him, so he’s not absolutely necessary.
Ashes of Outland Best Cards to Craft
There are currently no Ashes of Outland Legendaries that I would consider “best” crafts.
Ashes of Outland Good Cards to Craft
- Murgur Murgurgle – Murgur Murgurgle is probably the most commonly played “Prime” minion ever since those were released back in Ashes of Outland. The first part – 2/1 with Divine Shield for 2 mana – is actually a decent 2-drop and even better if you run some Divine Shield synergies. But then you get a really, really powerful card shuffled into your deck – Murgurgle Prime is a massive board refill. And not just any board refill – it makes a VERY durable board given that all the Murlocs have Divine Shield. There’s also a high chance that it will give you some immediate board impact (Crabrider, Redgill Razorjaw, Fishy Flyer). Opponents will have a hard time dealing with it, often wasting a few removals for just one of your cards – and if they can’t, it usually produces enough power to kill them or at least severely damage them. Overall, it’s present in most of the Aggro and Midrange Paladin builds.
- Kayn Sunfury – Kayn is interesting – whether its playable heavily depends on whether more aggressive Demon Hunter builds are playable. Not only it’s a Charge minion, which are naturally good in Aggro decks, but it also lets all of your other minions circumvent Taunt minions. One of the best ways to stabilize against Aggro is shielding yourself with Taunt minions, and Kayn makes them useless for as long as he’s on the board (often one turn is enough). However, right now Aggro Demon Hunter builds actually aren’t very strong and he’s mostly played in Brute Demon Hunter. His use case is similar, but instead of aggression, you want to prevent the opponent from Taunting up against your heavy hitters – Irebound Brute and Lion's Frenzy. Especially the latter, which is very vulnerable to being blocked by Taunts. But I imagine that he might still shine in some other builds before he rotates out of Standard.