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Combo Priest deck list guide - The Witchwood - Hearthstone (July 2018)

Our advanced guide to playing Combo Priest in the Witchwood meta.

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Our Combo Priest deck list guide features the best deck list for Season 52 of The Witchwood (July 2018). Our Combo Priest guide also contains Mulligan advice, card combos and strategy tips.

Combo Priest is a Hearthstone deck that's been around in one form or another for absolutely ages, but has grown in popularity since the release of The Witchwood expansion back in April.

The general idea behind playing this kind of deck is that you boost a minion's Health up with Divine Spirit, and then convert that Health into an equally large amount of Attack strength by applying Inner Fire to the same minion. This done, you should find it pretty easy to slam enough damage into your opponent’s face to get the match finished up fast.

In the third edition of our Combo Priest guide, we're highlighting the most competitive version of the deck that's seeing play right now. We've also added in loads of strategy and Mulligan advice to help you pilot the deck to your best ability. If this one continues to be popular, we'll continue updating this article!

UPDATE - JULY 2018 #1

Combo Priest is struggling to make much of an impact as we approach the end of the Witchwood era, which is a shame as it can be a lot of fun to play. The deck list hasn't changed since our last update, but we'll keep tracking this one as long as it's seeing at least some kind of competitive play.

Combo Priest deck list and strategy

This precise version of Combo Priest is the one that's seeing the most play in the current Witchwood meta. We'll update our recommendation as the meta evolves over time.

PriestNeutral
2 x Circle of Healing2 x Wild Pyromancer
2 x Silence1 x Acolyte of Pain
2 x Inner Fire2 x Injured Blademaster
2 x Northshire Cleric1 x Tar Creeper
2 x Power Word: Shield2 x Unpowered Steambot
2 x Divine Spirit1 x Witchwood Piper
2 x Radiant Elemental
2 x Shadow Ascendant
2 x Shadow Visions
2 x Mass Dispel
1 x Lyra the Sunshard

Select and copy the long ID string below, then create a deck in Hearthstone to export this deck into your game.

Deck Import ID: AAECAa0GBPsMysMCvsgCpvACDfgC5QT2B9UIpQnRCtIK1gryDNHBAtjBAs7MApf2AgA=

General strategy

Combo Priest uses the class’s extensive healing effects and cheap spells to gain significant value from its minions, keep them alive when trading to control the early game and draw cards aggressively. This huge buildup of a single minion’s health can then be turned into a big aggressive play by changing its attack to match its health using Inner Fire for some devastating damage.

Early game: Drop down Northshire Cleric to get your card draw engine going early. A common play is running it into a minion and then heal it up to draw. You can also buff its health with Power Word: Shield to make this even easier to achieve. Meanwhile, Wild Pyromancer can be combined with a lot of your cheap spells to keep the board clear. Just be sure to keep an eye on its health and use your hero power to keep it alive.

Mid game: Continue to maintain board control using the AOE effect from Wild Pyromancer and your spells. You can play Injured Blademaster along with Circle of Healing to negate its Battlecry effect and leave you with a 4/7 for just three mana. Acolyte of Pain can draw you some extra cards too.

Late game: Your late game is all about working towards creating a single huge minion that can take out your opponent in one or two swings. Whichever minion you choose, you’ll want to buff its health up using Divine Spirit at least once, though probably twice, and then cast Inner Fire to make its attack value match its health. You can usually do thirty or more damage with this combo, and Unpowered Steambot is an amazing target.

If you’re low on resources to make the big finish happen, you can use Shadow Visions to discover extra copies of either Divine Spirit or Inner Fire and make an even larger minion.

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Aggro Opponents

A few top tips for playing against aggro opponents on ladder:

  • Wild Pyromancer is your best friend in this matchup as it is so good at clearing away all their small, low health minions.
  • A buffed up Northshire Cleric can also be good at trading away their smaller minions while drawing you extra cards when healed back up.
  • Acolyte of Pain can get you multiple card draws if you keep it buffed and healed.
  • Don’t neglect healing your hero every now and then too – you don’t want to get caught out by surprise lethal damage.

Control opponents

Some things to keep in mind when up against control decks:

  • You can spend more time in the early game patiently drawing cards to find your combo pieces.
  • Be cautious of committing too hard with a single large minion before you can do anything with it as there’s a good chance your opponent is saving removal for it.
  • Silence and Mass Dispel are the closest cards the deck has to a big removal tool so keep them in hand for any major threats.
  • The quicker you can assemble your combo pieces, the less time they’ll have to get out of range with healing or armour.

More great Priest guides:

Combo Priest Mulligan guide

These are the card you’ll want to search for as a priority in your opening mulligan:

  • Northshire Cleric: Can contest the board early while also helping you draw some extra cards in the early game.
  • Shadow Ascendant: Provides another friendly minion with a bit more reach and enough survivability to make it through a trade.
  • Radiant Elemental: Solid stats for the mana cost if you need to contest the board and the spell discount can be very handy, even early on.
  • Power Word: Shield: Gives you card draw and can also give your early minions a health boost to survive trades.

As a final point, we’ll just make a note that Wild Pyromancer becomes a much worthier keep if you’re sure you’re in an aggro match-up.

Combo Priest tips, combos and synergies

To help you understand the general strategy behind playing Combo Priest, we've broken down all of the combos that exist within the latest version of this deck. We'll update these tips as and when the recommended deck list changes.

- Your classic combo in this deck involves doubling a minion's Health with Divine Spirit, and then converting that increased Health into added damage through Inner Fire. Assuming the minion was played on a previous turn, you should then be able to attack for an almighty amount of damage.

- When you hit End Turn, Shadow Ascendant will target a random friendly minion and grant it +1 / +1 of stats. If there are no targets, the effect won’t be granted to the Ascendant.

- Tar Creeper only has extra attacking strength on the other player’s turn.

- Every time a minion is healed while Northshire Cleric's out on the board, you'll draw an extra card. If multiple minions get healed through a spell like Circle of Healing, then you'll draw multiple cards.

- Each time that Acolyte of Pain takes damage, you'll drawn an extra card into your hand. There's important synergy here with Wild Pyromancer (see below).

- Remember that Wild Pyromancer dishes out its damage to every minion on the board after the effect of the spell you cast has been applied.

- Each spell you cast while Radiant Elemental is out in play will cost one Mana less than it otherwise would have. The effect stacks with multiple Elementals on the board. This reduction is important in the context of building your powerhouse minion, so plan ahead carefully here.

- Cast a spell while Lyra the Sunshard is out on the board and you’ll receive a randomly selected Priest spell.

Combo Priest card choices and subsitutions

These are some of the key cards for Combo Priest. Fortunately it doesn’t feature many expensive cards, as the ones it does include can’t be easily replaced.

  • Circle of Healing: Can offer massive card draw value when combined with Northshire Cleric and a board of injured minions.
  • Inner Fire: The second part of your big combo finish that sets a minion’s attack to be the same as its health.
  • Northshire Cleric: Offers some early board presence that can also become a huge card draw engine if kept alive.
  • Power Word: Shield: Helps your minions survive and trade in the early game while also drawing you a card.
  • Divine Spirit: This is what you want to play before Inner Fire to set a minion’s health to ridiculously high values.
  • Shadow Visions: Can find you extra copies of Inner Fire and Divine Spirit when you need them most. An essential part to keep the deck more consistent.
  • Wild Pyromancer: You’ll need this to keep aggro decks under control in the early game. Can offer significant value when combined with spells such as Power Word: Shield and Divine Hymn.

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