Our Dude Paladin deck list guide features the best deck list for Season 48 (March 2018). Our Dude Paladin guide also contains Mulligan advice, card combos and strategy tips.
Dude Paladin isn't a new kind of Hearthstone deck, but it's one that's making a little bit of a comeback in the post-nerf Kobolds and Catacombs meta. It's a deck that's built around the hero's core Silver Hand Recruit mechanic, and to that end it features new cards like Drygulch Jailor and Level Up! along with any number of synergistic cards from expansions gone by.
The idea really is that you have a number of ways to generate Silver Hand Recruits and lots of nice synergies between these characters and the bonus effects of Unidentified Maul. You can then leverage your fighting force to field cheap Crystal Lions. Throw the bubbles of Steward of Darkshire into the mix and you can find yourself building a surprisingly sturdy board presence out of these rather minor minions.
In the latest update for our Dude Paladin guide, we've got a well-refined new take on this old archetype that you can get started with. We've also highlighted all of the clever combos and card synergies you can make use of with this deck. Before that though you'll find some Mulligan advice and a broad overview of how to actually play this deck.
UPDATE - 9th MARCH 2018
As Dude Paladin is one of the strongest decks currently seeing play in the Kobolds meta, we wanted to give this one a weekly once-over to check it's all up to date. There are no changes to take into account since our update at the end of February, so just keep powering your way up the ladder with this extraordinarily potent deck!
BREAKING NEWS! - A new expansion is coming! Our massive Hearthstone: The Witchwood guide contains details of the new cards, mechanics and single player content coming to the game.
Dude Paladin deck list and strategy
Here's the version of Dude Paladin that was recently put together by Muzzy. As the archetype's making something of a return to power you should expect further refinements in the weeks to come.
|2 x Lost in the Jungle||2 x Argent Squire|
|2 x Righteous Protector||2 x Dire Wolf Alpha|
|1 x Drygulch Jailor||2 x Knife Juggler|
|1 x Equality|
|2 x Divine Favor|
|2 x Rallying Blade|
|2 x Steward of Darkshire|
|1 x Unidentified Maul|
|2 x Call to Arms|
|2 x Lightfused Stegodon|
|1 x Level Up!|
|2 x Stand Against Darkness|
|2 x Crystal Lion|
|1 x Sunkeeper Tarim|
|1 x Vinecleaver|
Select and copy the long ID string below, then create a deck in Hearthstone to export this deck into your game.
Deck Import ID: AAECAZ8FBvQFucECg8cC1uUCteYCt+cCDKcF9QXZB7EI2a4Cu68C/68CuMcC2ccC48sC+NICieYCAA==
There are lots of synergies to weave together in this midrange deck, and so the best way of getting acclimatised to it is to carefully study the combo section at the bottom of this page. There are some general additional tips we can provide though:
Although you are fundamentally an aggro deck, you can actually give yourself a surprising advantage by applying just a little bit of control against fast opponents. You have cards like Knife Juggler and protective bubbling effects, after all, which means you can actually out-value other fast decks a lot of the time.
Something else you have going in your favour in fast match-ups is your stash of weapons. Not only do these grant your minions bonus effects, increasing their chances of surviving a trade, but you also have the raw damage output of the weapon itself. This helps you use your Health pool as another resource in the game, while protecting your precious minions.
There's a definite turning point when it comes to playing Dude Paladin against aggro decks though, and usually around the mid-game where you want to worry less about control and think more about the kind of combos that can get you over the finishing line. You need to continually look at the damage potential in your hand, and calculate how many turns you are away from lethal. Just be mindful of any board-clears the opponent may be coming up to, as it may still make sense to trade.
When it comes to facing slower, control-orientated opponents some things never change, and it's much more important to pile rapid punishment into your opponents face as quickly as possible. If the game wears on and they start drawing into their big fat Taunt minions, you're not going to stand a chance.
You also need to be extremely careful against certain archetypes right now, with cards like Defile and Hellfire from both of the most popular Warlock decks proving particularly problematic. You're going to have to calculate the potential impact of these cards on your board state, and possibly switch your game-plan to avoid making life easy for your opponent.
Dude Paladin Mulligan guide
As you're pretty much an ggro deck it's really important that you get off to a very fast start by making use of cards like Argent Squire, Righteous Protector and Lost in the Jungle. These provide an instant effect on the board, and allow you to start building out your “dude” strategy from there.
Getting one of these one-Mana spells is your absolute priority, then, but note that if you have that secured then it's OK to keep something like Knife Juggler or Dire Wolf Alpha. The former will almost certainly cause the opponent some serious knife-flinging headaches, while the latter can help even your smallest minions start the process of applying pressure. Your opponent just won't know what to focus on first, and they'll find themselves getting whittled down to zero health surprisingly quickly.
Should you have the good fortune to have Turns 1 and 2 taken care of, you might want to consider one of your weapons. The bonus effect of Unidentified Maul can be surprisingly impactful if you've established even a small presence on the board, and the combo section at the bottom of the page has more detail on what options you can draw into with this weapon. Rallying Blade is another good choice, and particularly if Argent Squire or Righteous Protector are out on the board.
Although Call to Arms is an expensive card to think about keeping, the value derived from it is extreme enough that it's almost certainly worth holding onto. This is one of those exceptions to the rules for an aggro deck, as the sheer impact of this card has to be seen in a live match to be believed. Trust us on this one.
More great Paladin guides:
Dude Paladin tips, combos and synergies
Here's a quick run through all of the combos that are contained with this particular version of Dude Paladin:
- The following cards can all be used to generate Silver Hand Recruits: Drygluch Jailor, Lost in the Jungle, Vinecleaver and Stand Against Darkness.
- If Steward of Darkshire is out on the board before you summon your recruits, they'll all gain the Divine Shield effect. Factor in a card like Rallying Blade and you've the potential to build a quick, thick fighting force.
- Once you've established a board of Silver Hand Recruits, you can use cards like Sunkeeper Tarim, Lightfused Stegodon and Level Up! to increase their stats. It makes sense, of course, to apply the cards in that order.
- Think carefully about where you position your minions so they can benefit from Dire Wolf Alpha. We like to keep the weakest minions on one side of the board and bigger stuff on the other. That way you can slot the wolf between the small guys and cycle damage through them if you need to trade into a bigger target.
- The more Silver Hand Recruits you can field out onto the board, the cheaper Crystal Lion becomes when you play him - one Mana less for each one, in fact.
- Rallying Blade not only provides a very handy weapon for you to control the board with, it'll also grant any Divine Shield minions an extra +1 / +1 of stats!
- There's synergy to be considered between Equality, Knife Juggler and your many ways of summoning new Silver Hand Recruits onto the board. Get lucky and you might pick off a massive target cleanly with one of those flying daggers.
- There are four possible bonus effects to be gained as Unidentified Maul passes out of your deck pile and into your hand:
- Purifier's Maul - Give your minions Divine Shield.
- Sacred Maul - Give your minions Taunt.
- Champion's Maul - Summon two 1 / 1 Silver Hand Recruits.
- Blessed Maul - Give your minions +1 Attack.
- Lightfused Stegodon puts all of your active Silver Hand Recruits through the Adapt process. These allows you to choose of three buffs chosen at random from the following options:
|Crackling Shield||Divine Shield|
|Flaming Claws||+3 Attack|
|Liquid Membrane||Can't be targeted by spells or Hero Powers|
|Living Spores||Deathrattle: Summon two 1/1 Plants|
|Rocky Carapace||+3 Health|
|Shrouding Mist||Stealth until your next turn|
|Volcanic Might||+1 / +1 stats|