- Scott Lantz is on the show this week
- Topic: The best cards for Paladin and Shaman in Arena
- Reasons to be happy this week
How Arena Works
- Quick recap: picking a hero and cards
- Goal for this week: help you make the best card choices while playing Arena
- Includes neutral minions as well
The Best Paladin Cards for Arena
Basic strategy: Fill the board with troops and attempt to control the board. Once you can stabilize the board and get a minion or two to stick, buff them up and terrorize. Paladin is better situated than most classes to win via a grab-bag of tricks that contribute to efficiency in various ways. Especially against fast classes, if you neutralize and stabilize, you’re likely to do well in the long-run. Against slower classes, you’ll want to keep the pressure on.
Great 2-for-1 potential to get board advantage early game, great late draw to protect your bombs.
Hammer of Wrath
Nice and simple. Any card that replaces itself has value, and the fact that this replaces itself AND kills an opponent’s minion on the board means it’ll be useful every game you draw it.
It is so easy to kill multiple creatures with this card. Turn 4 is the perfect time for this too. If they’re rushing, you’ll wipe out 4-turns of minions on their side of the board. If they’re going big, you should be able to Consecrate and trade your small minions for their big minions. Bonus: also deals damage to their hero.
I’ve spent too many Paladin games with a powerful buff card in my hand and nothing to cast it on. The Imp Master + hero power will go a long way towards making sure something sticks on your side of the board.
Scott: I’ve become a big fan of this recently. Very under-rated card.
This is similar to Explosive Trap for me. Great way to remove a threat you know is coming — it’s a heal and a damage.
Blessing of Wisdom
This card is interesting. You cast it when you’re about to attack, and you are guaranteed to get your card back. So this is a unique card in hearthstone that essentially says “Bet 1 mana now that this guy will survive to attack again on future turns.” Or, with Windfury, it’s just plain profit. Must play it smart, but never costs you much if you bet poorly. Plus, you can use it to kind of neutralize an enemy minion in a pinch. Been seeing that a lot lately
A 3/3 for 3 is fine, and its ability goes a long way towards neutralizing the nastiest enemy minion on the board. This card’s ability is one of the best ‘free’ abilities on a creature whose size equal to its cost. Very close to a 2-for-1.
Blessing of Kings
While you obviously can’t have a deck full of buff cards instead of minions, this can be much stronger than a 4/4. You’ll often use this to take out the biggest thing on the board and still have a powerful (if fragile) threat left over. Beware of putting all your eggs in one basket.
Sword of Justice
As a 1/5 weapon for 3, this is not a good deal considering Paladin also has a 1/4 weapon for 1 that isn’t really worth using. You should be using this to buff, only attacking if highly efficient. This won’t enable any tricky surprises like Blessing of Kings, but +5/+5 (spread over 5 minions) for 3 mana is some of the best efficiency you will find. This WILL turn the game in your favor compared to a random neutral minion. Doesn’t do anything when cast though, so get it out ASAP.
Hard to use, but if you’re clever and patient, it can swing a game. This card is better in weenie decks. Combos well with cards like Knife Juggler, Scarlet Crusader, Argent Protector, Cult Master, and Harvest Golem. Make sure you cast this before summoning minions.
The Best Shaman Cards for Arena
Basic strategy: A lot of cheap, powerful removal to keep the enemy board clear and then big minions at the end to keep the pain train going. One of the trickier classes to play well.
Mana Tide Totem
The enemy will put a lot of effort into removing this card. Play it when you have a taunt out or their side of the board is clear to increase your chances of getting more than one card. Remember: if they spend a removal to get rid of this, it’s a victory for you.
We talked about this a lot on the last show, but this is the perfect answer for early game aggression. You should be able to kill almost anything they throw down in the first three turns, all with one card.
Big minion that instantly kills an enemy minion when it comes into play. Love it!
This is one of my all-time favorite cards of any class. The element of surprise is extremely valuable, and it often lets you trade up short minions, or maintain a strong defensive wall as you punch to keep itself alive.
It’s easy to look at this card and get worried about lost potential. But as a Shaman, you will almost always have at least one troop on the board (a totem). That makes this a 5/5 for 5 with a ton of upside.
Cast on turn 2 or 3, these spirits will usually dominate the board. Later in the game, their role changes to double-deep protection of your fragile-but-valuable creatures like Flametongue Totem, Mana Tide Totem, or Fire Elemental. Compared to Fen Creeper (a card I like more than most) this defers part of the casting cost, has more combined power/toughness, and is split over two bodies.
Lightning Storm is one of the signature Shaman cards. Mass AoE. Obviously, spellpower minions or totems make this thing even nastier. Generally best to wait until it will hit at least 3 minions. Note that this one doesn’t hit the enemy hero, so it’s all about its efficiency in killing minions.
People often overestimate cards like this and Polymorph, and therefore don’t get the full value they should. Generally, you don’t want to Hex cards costing less than 6 unless that card has been buffed with another strong card. Be patient and wait for a blowout, unless you just can’t. Keep in mind this is card disadvantage, since it will never kill a creature by itself. But if you can neutralize your enemy’s 8/8 for only 3 mana, that is a big tempo swing in your favor.
This card is about half a mana overcosted for its stats, so while you can drop it in a pinch if you need to, it’s generally best to wait to cast it until you can also cast something with Overload on the same turn. Luckily, Overload cards have cheaper up-front casting costs, so that’s easier to do than it may seem. Obviously, you need plenty of overload cards with this, or it’s just an overcosted minion.
While this card is also good in a Paladin deck, it’s a smidge stronger in a Shaman deck because it can make the difference between most totems being able to attack or not. Can really throw off your opponent’s combat calculations, giving you efficient trades they hadn’t planned on. If you can end your turn with your opponent having less than 6 power on board, this thing’s efficiency only grows. If you have 2 creatures ready to attack when you cast this, you’ll usually have profited.
How To Win Arena
- Minions are #1 priority
- Card draw is always valuable
- AoE removal works
- Avoid specific synergy decks — it’s a trap!
- Efficiency and flexibility
- Don’t be scared
- It’s worth the cost
Keep track of your progress!
Scott made a brilliant spreadsheet that you can use to track all of your Arena progress (and your entire card collection)!
Download his spreadsheet now
Scott’s Hearthstone Arena Tracking Spreadsheet
- Question from Justin: How to use emotes without offending people?
- iTunes Review: Icstrm and JollyAngus!
Card of the Week
Song by Scott!