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Spell Hunter deck list guide - Hearthstone (October 2018)

The latest deck list and a massively new update for our Spell Hunter guide.

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About John Bedford

John is Metabomb's Editor in Chief, and is responsible for all of the Hearthstone news, features and guides content on the site.

Our Spell Hunter deck list guide features the best deck list for Season 55 of Boomsday (October 2018). Our Spell Hunter guide also contains Mulligan advice, card combos and strategy tips.

Spell Hunter was a new Hearthstone deck to arrive with the Kobolds expansion and it's a pretty interesting concept. For a start, it quite deliberately strips out every minion card you might typically want to use with the hero in order to play into the power of the Hunter's new Legendary Weapon Rhok'delar. When you equip this weapon, the blade will refresh your hand with a random collection of class spells, which should hopefully provide you with the extra power you need to beat your opponent.

Although it saw quite a lot of play at the start of the Witchwood expansion, it quickly became something of a Tier 2 deck. Following the latest nerfs, however, Spell Hunter became much more popular and is widely predicted to do well in the Boomsday meta too.

In the current version of this article we're highlighting what we believe to be the best Spell Hunter deck list for the start of Boomsday. We've also got advanced strategy advice, suggestions for Mulliganing the deck correctly, and then a round-up of all the combos you can utilise. That should be more than enough to get you started with Spell Hunter!

UPDATE - BOOMSDAY #3

The most competitive Spell Hunter deck list hasn't changed a bit since our last update, and seems pretty well optimised at the moment. We will keep an eye on the archetype though, and bring you another update if the deck gets shuffled up again.

Spell Hunter deck list and strategy

This is the strongest version of Spell Hunter that's seeing play at this early stage of the Boomsday meta. We'll keep updating it for as long as the deck remains competitive.

HunterNeutral
2 x Candleshot
2 x Hunter's Mark
2 x Secret Plan
2 x Tracking
2 x Explosive Trap
2 x Freezing Trap
2 x Wandering Monster
2 x Animal Companion
2 x Eaglehorn Bow
2 x Kill Command
2 x Unleash the Hounds
2 x Flanking Strike
2 x Lesser Emerald Spellstone
1 x Deathstalker Rexxar
2 x To My Side!
1 x Rhok'delar

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

Deck Import ID: AAECAR8C6dIChtMCDo0BqAK1A4cEyQSXCNsJ/gzd0gLf0gLj0gLh4wLq4wKH+wIA

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General strategy

Spell Hunter remains one of the game’s most unique decks as it runs no minions at all. What’s the benefit to doing something that seems like such a big mistake? Well, it’s all to do with the weapon Rhok’delar, which fills your entire hand with Hunter spells if your deck has no minions in it. It’s a bit of a gamble, but it can usually give you enough resources to finish the game.

Spell Hunter does actually feature some creatures, but to stick to the rules it relies on summoning them through other card effects. You can also stitch them together in the late game with the Build-a-Beast hero power from Deathstalker Rexxar to help close out a match. It’s one of Hearthstone’s most interesting decks and worth a play if you’d like to try something a little different!

Early game: Secrets play a large part of the deck’s early game as a response to your opponent’s opening plays. Wandering Monster and Freezing Trap can deal with single minions, whereas a clever Explosive Trap can clear the board if they decide to go wide. It may not seem like the most exciting and reliable strategy, but if you’re powering up Lesser Emerald Spellstone and Eaglehorn Bow at the same time you’re generating a lot of value for future turns. New card for The Boomsday Project card, Secret Plan, adds a bit more versatility and unpredictability to this stage of the game too.

Candleshot and Unleash the Hounds are both very useful for finishing off any low health stragglers, while Tracking can scout through your deck if you’re desperate for a card to play. Any excess Mana can be used to weave in a hero power wherever possible to start whittling away their life total.

Mid game: Continue with the control approach by removing enemy threats from the board using your Secrets, spells and weapons. By now you should be looking to turn the corner and more proactively generate your own board to push through damage with cards like Animal Companion and Flanking Strike. Lesser Emerald Spellstone is also good at this stage if you’ve upgraded it at least once so you can summon three wolves – only play it at its base level if you’re in sheer desperation mode.

Late game: There are three cards that can have a massive impact in the late game and set you up for the win. The first, To My Side, can put you on the immediate path to victory if you’re lucky enough to get double Huffer. Leokk or Misha can work too if the board is set up in a certain way, but they’re not as immediately impactful.

Elsewhere, Deathstalker Rexxar can wipe your opponent out of the game completely with its two damage Battlecry effect. You can then start creating your own army of stitched together minions with the Build-A-Beast hero power. Whether you need big taunts or the last bit of damage it’ll offer near-infinite late game value. Lastly, there’s Rhok’delar, which will give you an entire hand of Hunter spells. Be sure any minions you’ve created aren’t in your hand when you play it, though, or the effect won’t trigger.

Aggro Opponents

Here are five or so tips for dealing with aggro opponents on the ladder.

  • It’s always worth keeping Explosive Trap in your opening hand and, depending on how brave you’re feeling, try to encourage your opponent to fill the board out further before you play it.
  • Also, you’ll want to save Unleash the Hounds for when there are three or more minions on the other side of the board to get the most value out of it.
  • With all the Secrets in the deck you may end up with more charges on your Eaglehorn Bow than you know what to do with. Perhaps swing in directly for an opponent’s life total.
  • The Battlecry from Deathstalker Rexxar can usually see off most aggro decks for good.
  • Given that Secret Plan can generate a card outside of the expected list, many opponents will make suboptimal plays as they can no longer be sure what they’re going to trigger. Use this to your advantage.

Control opponents

Here’s how to handle slower, control-focused opponents as Spell Hunter:

  • Kill Command offers a surprising amount of burst damage to finish off a control deck when they least expect it.
  • Hunter’s Mark is your answer to their high health minions so save it for when you need to eliminate something powerful or deal with a pesky taunt that’s blocking the final few points of damage.
  • Freezing Trap is also very useful for getting rid of big minions from the board, but is far easier to play around if your opponent is sensible.
  • You have some late game reach with Build-A-Beast, but you’ll struggle to stick it out with the more consistent late game in most control decks so try to play more aggressively.
  • You only have a few opportunities to go wide on the board so be careful you don’t play straight into a board clear.

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Spell Hunter Mulligan guide

You’ll want to prioritise these cards when looking for a starting hand with Spell Hunter:

  • 1. Wandering Monster: When played on curve there’s a good chance it will trade for the minion that’s attacking you, or could even survive to fight another day.
  • 2. Lesser Emerald Spellstone: An expensive to hold at five Mana but the quicker you can get this powered up with more wolves the better.
  • 3. Secret Plan: Allows you to Discover a Secret that might better suit your early game needs while also throwing off your opponent and buffing Lesser Emerald Spellstone.
  • 4. Candleshot: Ideal for chipping away at weaker minions in the early game without threatening your life total.
  • 5. Animal Companion: One of the few options to get you on the board in the early game in a deck that’s free of minions.

More great Hunter guides:

Spell Hunter tips, combos and synergies

To help you get to grips with Spell Hunter, we've produced a list of all the combos that power this particular version of the deck. Make sure you go into your first match with a firm understanding of the following combos:

- Hunter's Mark can be used to bring even the toughest enemy minion down into range of an Unleash the Hounds puppy or the AOE effect of Explosive Trap.

- Try to plan your Secrets out in the order you would like them to ideally be triggered in. You might prefer that a minor aggro minion gets chomped by Wandering Monster rather than obliterated by Explosive Trap, for example. The creature you get from Wandering Monster may well survive to do more work after the trade.

- Plan the use of your Eaglehorn Bow extremely carefully. Every time one of your many Secrets is triggered by the opponent, your weapon will gain an extra point of Durability. It's important that you keep that weapon damage rolling for control.

- Kill Command only does three points of damage in its vanilla form. If you can get any kind of Beast presence out in play, however, the damage output of this spell increases to five points - this can be a real game-changer, whether for controlling the board or finishing the fight off more quickly.

- Lesser Emerald Spellstone grows in a very particular way. When it's in your hand, playing a Secret will increase the number of Wolves it summons to three. Play a second Secret and the card maxes out at four Wolves. See our Spellstone guide for more details on the mechanic, as well as extra deck ideas.

- Flanking Strike not only removes an enemy minion with three or more Health, it also provides a 3 / 3 Wolf minion for your side of the board.

- Deathstalker Rexxar grants you five points of Armor when played, and also does two damage to all enemy minions. You also get the Build-A-Beast Hero Power which lets you combine vanilla Beast cards into new and revolting creations that have their Mana cost and stats combined.

- Rhok'delar is the real reason you pack not a single minion card into this deck. When you play it, your entire hand will be filled with a random selection of Hunter spells. The more you can thin your hand out first, of course, the more of these free spells you'll receive.

Spell Hunter card choices and substitutions

Here are some of the most important cards in Spell Hunter, as well as some lower dust cost substitutes where it’s possible to do so:

  • Candleshot: Excellent early game removal tool that also makes you immune when attacking to preserve your health.
  • Wandering Monster: Your earliest opportunity to get a minion on the board and it even has a good chance of surviving when played on curve.
  • Animal Companion: Misha and Huffer are the two you generally want to see from this depending on the matchup. Leokk only offers some value if you’re already established on the board.
  • Eaglehorn Bow: With all the Secrets in this deck you can easily generate a lot of bonus charges and use them for killing minions or going to the other player’s face.
  • Kill Command: Excellent burst damage that’s best saved to finish off your opponent. You can use it on minions if it’s vital that the target is removed.
  • Lesser Emerald Spellstone: This is the biggest single card minion generator in the deck if you get it to max power. At four wolves the value is undeniable, while three is OK and two is just disappointing.
  • Deathstalker Rexxar: Comes in with a powerful Battlecry effect and also grants a hero power that’ll give you some life in the late game. Without it you’ll have a less consistent late game, but you can use Savannah Highmane as a cheap replacement.
  • To My Side: Has the potential to be a strong finisher depending on how lucky you get with Animal Companion spawns. Again, Savannah Highmane is a reasonable replacement option.
  • Rhok’delar: At four attack it can do some decent damage, but you’re running it to get a hand of Hunter spells. It’s an essential part of the deck as without it there’d be no reason for Spell Hunter to exist!

Comment on this article

  • Bedders #1 2 months ago
    Here's the pre-Boomsday deck and ID if you're still playing this one ahead of launch!

    Hunter

    2 x Arcane Shot
    2 x Candleshot
    2 x Hunter's Mark
    2 x Tracking
    2 x Explosive Trap
    2 x Freezing Trap
    2 x Wandering Monster
    2 x Animal Companion
    2 x Eaglehorn Bow
    2 x Kill Command
    2 x Unleash the Hounds
    2 x Flanking Strike
    2 x Lesser Emerald Spellstone
    1 x Deathstalker Rexxar
    2 x To My Side!
    1 x Rhok'delar

    Deck ID

    AAECAR8C6dIChtMCDo0BqAK1A4cEyQTtBpcI2wn+DN3SAt/SAuPSAuHjAurjAgA=
    Sign in to reply
  • RuffyMcScruffy #2 4 months ago
    I slapped a Flare in there, because I've been seeing a bunch of other Spell Hunters, and it's also good for Mage
    Sign in to reply
  • R8mulus #3 9 months ago
    @Bedders No problem, thanks for helping me out.
    Sign in to reply
  • Bedders #4 9 months ago
    @R8mulus Also, sorry for the delay in replying! I'm just catching up on everything now after the Christmas holidays.
    Sign in to reply
  • Bedders #5 9 months ago
    Hi@R8mulus. We'll see what the meta looks like then, but I would probably be inclined to put another Explosive Shot in assuming nothing else comes along in the next rotation.
    Sign in to reply
  • R8mulus #6 9 months ago
    Hi guys

    Let me just say I like this deck concept very much. I was just wondering if it is possible to replace "cat trick" with something else, give that it will go wild when the new year starts.
    Sign in to reply
  • Bedders #7 10 months ago
    @fanap That was a bit inconsiderate of me actually, sorry! I've dug the previous version out of the archives just in case you want to revert to it.

    Hunter

    1 x Candleshot
    1 x Hunter's Mark
    1 x On the Hunt
    2 x Tracking
    2 x Cat Trick
    1 x Explosive Trap
    1 x Flare
    2 x Freezing Trap
    2 x Wandering Monster
    2 x Animal Companion
    2 x Deadly Shot
    2 x Eaglehorn Bow
    2 x Kill Command
    2 x Flanking Strike
    2 x Lesser Emerald Spellstone
    1 x Deathstalker Rexxar
    2 x To My Side!
    1 x Rhok'delar
    1 x Call of the Wild

    AAECAR8IjQHJBIAH6asCx64C6dIChtMC4eMCC6gCtQOHBJcIxQj+DPixAt3SAt/SAuPSAurjAgA=
    Sign in to reply
  • fanap #8 10 months ago
    Will try this out, but I was doing quite well with your original one!
    Sign in to reply

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