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Elemental Shaman deck list guide - United in Stormwind - Hearthstone (July 2021)

Our guide to playing the supercharged Elemental Shaman in the Barrens meta.

Our Elemental Shaman deck list guide features the best Forged in the Barrens deck list for Season 85 of Hearthstone (April 2021). Our Elemental Shaman guide also contains Mulligan advice, card combos and strategy tips.

Elemental Shaman is a Hearthstone deck that's not historically been the best, but it is now roaring though the ranks.

This deck has been taking the meta by storm and is one of the most reasonable to craft for the biggest bang. It's a deck that really feels like it has everything, and remains top of the win-rate for a reason.

To help you get started with this new take on an old favourite, we've put together a starter guide which contains the latest competitive deck list, Mulligan advice, and a closer look at the combos contained in the deck.

This is one of the most powerful and iterated decks in the current meta for a reason and you will soon know why!

UPDATE - United in Stormwind

Elemental Shaman hasn't always been the most meta of decks but right now it is performing exceptionally well. We'll go deep on the cards that are key to it, and the combos you'll want to utilise.

Elemental Shaman deck list and strategy

Although Elemental Shaman is on the fringes of the meta right now, this is the version of the deck that's seeing the most competitive play this month:

ShamanNeutral
2 x Lightning Bolt2 x Kindling Elemental
2 x Wailing Vapor2 x Gyreworm
2 x Cagematch Custodian1 x Alexstrasza, the Life-Binder
2 x Menacing Nimbus
2 x Arid Stormer
1 x Instructor Fireheart
2 x Primal Dungeoneer
2 x Serpentshrine Portal
2 x Whack-A-Gnoll Hammer
2 x Earth Revenant
2 x Lilypad Lurker
2 x Fire Elemental

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

Deck Import ID: AAECAdrGBAKczgOwigQO27gDp94Dqt4Dq94DjOED4OwD4ewDre4Dr+4D4+4DlPADjJ8E+Z8E46AEAA

More Shaman guides:

The rest of this guide refers to pre-United in Stormwind cards. It will be updated in the future if the decklist changes.

Elemental Shaman Mulligan guide

The current elemental Shaman deck list performs best, like most decks, if it hits a really nice curve. The early game is important to setting up synergies that will domino throughout your future turns. Here are the cars you want to look out for on an opening hand:

  • 1. Wailing Vapor: This is the turn 1 drop you really want. Not only does it activate future elemental synergies, but it will only get stronger with time. At worst, it causes your opponent to waste a three damage spell on a 1-drop.
  • 2. Kindling Elemental: This little guy will reduce the cost of your next elemental. It's a good first drop that allows you to play a more powerful elemental early and help activate their Battlecrys.
  • 3. Arid Stormer: A very strong turn 2 drop if you've used a Kindling Elemental on the turn previous. Even at turn three, it's great if you've played an elemental on the previous turn. It's large health pool and Windfury and Rush can help you take out any minions your opponent has played or set him up for starting to hit the face twice on the turn after.
  • 4. Menacing Nimbus: A classic of Shaman decks. It's a 2/2 body that replaces itself in your hand, and also acts as an activator for Battlecrys of your other elementals.
  • 5. Cagematch Custodian: Much like Menacing Nimbus, it's a 2/2 body, replaces itself in your hand and it's an activator. You will always draw a Whack-A-Gnoll Hammer with it, which is a very strong turn three play.

It's worth highlighting there are two trap cards that you might be tempted to keep but you are better off mulliganing.

  • 1. Instructor Fireheart: Instructor Fireheart is only a three drop, but don't make the mistake - she is one of your finishers. Her ability requires excess mana to cast successive spells to get the most value. She's definitely something to play from turn seven onwards rather than turn three.
  • 2. Lightning Bolt: Some really aggressive Shaman decks might utilise the Lightning Bolt early but it's not a good idea here. Your turn one, two and three are hugely important to building your cascading synergies so overloading yourself early on is likely to throw off your mana curve. Save it for doing emergency damage on a minion later, or for finishing an opponent.

Elemental Shaman tips, combos and synergies

This deck is all about early synergy building and letting your late-game finishers do their work. Here are some tips and combos you likely will want to utilise.

- For turn 1, if you have Kindling Elemental and Wailing Vapor in your hand, you have two options. You can play Kindling Elemental first and then also drop Wailing Vapor for free. The other option is to play Wailing Vapor first and wait a turn to play Kindling Elemental to give Wailing Vapor more power. This is especially powerful if you also have a Cagematch Custodian or Menacing Nimbus in hand as you will be able to play it on the same turn. Just decide if you'd rather have a more explosive turn one or turn two.

- Several cards in this deck have special activators if you've played an elemental card in the previous turn. Make sure you are getting the most out of Arid Stormer, Gyreworm and Lilypad Lurker by playing elementals. It turns them from decent standalone cards to superpowered ones that can help you out of sticky situations. This is why the first three turns are so important.

- As stated above, Instructor Fireheart is a three-drop, but is much better as a finisher. Saving her for turn 10 or so will let you cascade three to four spells to help you close out the game.

- Try to activate Dunk Tank by playing a Lilypad Lurker or Fire Elemental while it's in your hand. Its sweeping ability is really strong once activated. Hitting the face or a particular big creature for four and then dealing two more to all enemy minions (including the same minion if you used the initial four on one.)

- Stacking several spells in your hand for later use is a very strong finishing move. Because the curve is so nice on the deck, you often can save a lot of removal for later on. You can often find later in the game that you have double-digit damage available to you for very cheap to close out a game.

- Whack-Gnoll Hammer's ability to do three damage instantly as well as beef up your minions on the board is very, very strong. It's a very good turn three play.

-Don't sleep on Arid Stormer. If you can activate its Battlecry, its Rush and Windfury ability make him very versatile. It can be used for instant minion removal or you can use Whack-A-Gnoll or a Strength totem to add extra attack damage to it. This allows you to do ever-increasing damage with the Windfury ability.

Elemental Shaman card choices and substitutions

For a deck with such an exceptionally high win rate, Elemental Shaman is surprisingly cheap. It utilises a lot of common cards making this viable for a lot of players. However, the counter side is that its core is so synergistic, there isn't a lot of room to mess with the early game.

That said, later on in the game, where most of the expensive cards live, you thankfully mix and match a decent amount. There is room for variation when it comes to the finishers in the deck.

  • Al' Akir the Windlord: This is a perfectly reasonable substitute in the late game finisher spot. It's a menace to deal with and can close out the late game on its own.
  • Inara Stormcrash: A reasonable finisher, especially if you are looking to close out games even earlier. As a five drop, you can play her much earlier than Alexstrasza, the Life-Binder.
  • Earth Elemental: If you're short on crafting materials, Earth Elemental can be a decent, non-Legendary finisher. He's a huge body with Taunt so will allow you to continue to apply the pain with your other sources of damage.
  • Mana Tide Totem: Huge card draw potential. Played behind taunts or into an empty board is the most ideal scenario, though you can simply cycle it if you’re desperate for cards.
  • Marshspawn: This is a decent mid-game body. There are certainly better options, but if you want a later game card that's very cheap, this is available..

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  • aravindsharma08 #1 5 years ago
    Is there a reason why Southsea Deckhand isn't good to kee in Mulligan?
  • Bedders #2 5 years ago
    @Bludsh0t I'm just about to put the Unite the Murlocs guide live and it's terrifying to look at. Anyone hoping for a break from Shaman this time around is going to be very disappointed.
  • Bludsh0t #3 5 years ago
    not much card draw in that deck, but it could be strong. I think the new hunter quest deck will be stronger but time will tell