Our essential guide to mastering Taunt Druid in the Witchwood era.
Our Taunt Druid deck list guide features the best Rastakhan deck list for Season 58 of Hearthstone (January 2019). Our Taunt Druid guide also contains Mulligan advice, card combos and strategy tips.
Taunt Druid is a Hearthstone deck that’s been built to exploit the Recruit mechanic that was introduced with Kobolds and Catacombs. As a result, you have a handful of powerful cards that can pluck equally deadly minions from your deck and bring them straight into play, and at no extra charge – very nice!
The launch of the Witchwood expansion introduced some fantastic new tools too and now the deck still remains strong as we enter the Rastakhan meta – even if the list hasn’t changed all that much. Alternatively, if you are looking for something similar that does draw from cards in the new expansion, then you might want to check out our Undatakah Druid guide instead.
If not, in the sixth edition of our guide to playing this archetype, we’ve got what we believe is the strongest version of the deck seeing play in the Rastakhan meta. We will, of course, be tracking developments closely. Read on below for even more strategy and combo advice to master piloting the deck.
Taunt Druid deck list and strategy
Here’s the best version of Taunt Druid that’s seeing play in the live Rastakhan meta. We’ll be monitoring this one closely to see if any new cards manage to find a way into the list.
|2 x Lesser Jasper Spellstone||2 x Carnivorous Cube|
|2 x Naturalize||1 x Trogg Gloomeater|
|2 x Wild Growth||2 x Primordial Drake|
|1 x Wrath||1 x The Lich King|
|1 x Ferocious Howl||1 x Dragonhatcher|
|2 x Witching Hour||1 x Sleepy Dragon|
|2 x Branching Paths||1 x Master Oakheart|
|2 x Ironwood Golem|
|2 x Oaken Summons|
|2 x Swipe|
|2 x Nourish|
|1 x Hadronox|
Select and copy the long ID string below, then create a deck in Hearthstone to export this deck into your game.
Deck Import ID: AAECAZICBsQGws4Cr9MCjeYC8eoCjfACDEBf6QHkCMnHApTSApjSAp7SAubTAovhAoTmAt3rAgA=
More great Druid guides:
- 1. Best Budget Decks – Hearthstone: Best Budget Decks for Ashes of Outland
- 2. Tier List – Hearthstone deck tier list (Ashes of Outland)
- 3. Embiggen Druid – Embiggen Druid deck list guide (Ashes of Outland)
- 4. Token Druid – Token Druid deck list guide (Ashes of Outland)
- 5. Treant Druid – Treant Druid deck list guide (Ashes of Outland)
- 6. Quest Druid – Quest Druid deck list guide (Ashes of Outland)
VIDEO GUIDE – Trump’s video guide to playing Taunt Druid is a little out of date, but the deck list hasn’t changed all that much. This will give you a solid grounding in how to actually play Taunt Druid in a live environment, and we highly recommend that you watch the whole thing.
This is a deck that’s built around the concept of giving your opponent an endless succession of stubborn Taunt minions to deal with, and then once they’ve dealt with those problems, throwing all that stuff back onto the board. That’s the broad strategy overview for playing Taunt Druid, then, but the combo section towards the bottom of the page will give you more insight into how the cards in this deck can be strategically weaved together.
Early game: Start ramping up your Mana curve via Wild Growth so you can start fielding problems that your opponent should struggle to overcome at their own current power level. You have some decent removal options in the deck, but you can also exploit the synergy that exists between Oaken Summons and cards like Ironwood Golem to start presenting the opponent with a defensive wall.
Mid game: Survivability and control should be your priorities in the mid game. You have cards such as Ferocious Howl that can give you a significant Armor boost if you’re holding a lot of cards, while Branching Paths can be used for any of its uses depending on your needs at the time. Against an opponent that has gone wide on the board, you can use Swipe to clear away all their minions, or target specific threats using an upgraded Lesser Jasper Spellstone.
Late game: Once you reach the end-game you have a large number of threats to throw at the opponent. Master Oakheart summons a seriously impressive collection of creatures (detailed in the combo section at the bottom of this page), while Hadronox brings all of your Taunt minions back to life. If that wasn’t enough stickiness, you can use Carnivorous Cube to double down on your Taunt wall – get one of these guys on Hadronox in particular and it’ll be almost impossible for your opponent to get back in the game.
These are some important things to consider when playing against aggro decks:
- 1. If you can start getting some Taunt minions on the board early then aggro will have a lot of trouble racing you down.
- 2. Swipe is a very important card against fast aggro decks with lots of weak minions.
- 3. You can Naturalise something if desperate, but be aware the additional cards you draw your opponent can be a huge help to them.
- 4. You can also generate a lot of additional Armor to prevent aggro from racing you down before you’ve had a chance to establish your game plan.
We’ve put together a few tips to best control decks on the ranked ladder:
- 1. You have a lot of lasting power against control. Even if they clear off one of your big plays you should be capable of resurrecting everything again with Hadronox or Witching Hour.
- 2. Even if your opponent runs a Silence effect to eliminate Hadronox, you can resummon the spider with Witching Hour and get the Taunt minion resurrection train rolling once again.
- 3. Save your copies of Naturalise for the biggest threats your opponents can play against you.
- 4. If you race ahead of your opponent with Mana ramp you might be able to beat them before they restore control over the game, so don’t be afraid to take an aggressive approach if you see an opportunity.
Taunt Druid Mulligan guide
Here’s a run-down of some of the most potent cards you should be looking for in your opening hand, and why they’re so valuable to get hold of. We’ve listed them in approximate order of importance.
- 1. Wild Growth: Hands-down your most important card in the early game and something that should always be played at the first opportunity. The earlier you get this triggered, the more benefit you gain throughout the remainder of the match.
- 2. Oaken Summons: Guaranteed to bring Ironwood Golem into play, and buy yourself some breathing space.
- 3. Nourish: More Mana ramp or extra cards if you’ve got off to a particularly problematic start.
- 4. Master Oakheart: An expensive card but such a powerful part of your late-game that it often justifies a spot in your opening hand – after the first three in this list though.
- 5. Wrath: Good early-game removal, and against aggro decks you’ll often get that bonus card-draw to trigger as well.
Taunt Druid tips, combos and synergies
Although this new deck owes a lot to the Taunt Druid of old, there’s a lot that’s new about this powerful archetype in the Rastakhan meta.
For that reason we recommend familiarising yourself with all of these crucial combos before taking this list to the early ladder. A little bit of preparation will pay off huge dividends here.
– Wild Growth provides a permanent Mana advantage once played, and so you want to cast this off as early as possible in every match-up.
– Lesser Jasper Spellstone only does two damage in its vanilla form, but gain three points of Armor to upgrade the card to four damage. Another three-Armor gain maxes the card out at six damage.
– Wrath can be used to either ping a near-death minion off the board and gain a card in the process, or hit something meatier for three points of damage.
– Witching Hour has its potency in the late-game, reviving your Hadronox as the only Beast class of minion in this deck.
– Remember that Ironwood Golem can only attack if you currently have three or more points of Armor, so see if there’s a way of topping that up so you can make use of the minion.
– As we’ve mentioned elsewhere in our Taunt Druid guide, Oaken Summons will always drag Ironwood Golem into play for free – that’s assuming a copy of one of those minions is still in your deck somewhere.
– Carnivorous Cube destroys the target you point it at, so make sure it does some work first. It goes without saying that Hadronox is a sublime target for the Cube, so try to make that play happen if it’s at all possible.
– You are playing a lot of Taunt minions in this deck. Hadronox summons all of the dead ones back onto the board when you play the card. This is a very good thing…
– Dragonhatcher always brings either Sleepy Dragon or Primordial Drake into play. Note that the Battlecry effect of that latter card does not go off in this scenario.
– Master Oakheart pulls a one, two and three Attack minion from your remaining deck and puts them in play. The following cards are candidates in this context: Ironwood Golem, Trogg Gloomeater, Dragonhatcher and the mighty Hadronox herself.
– Don’t forget that the Battlecry effect of Primordial Drake – if actively played rather than summoned via Dragonhatcher – also affects your own minions. If they will die to this inferno, make sure they do something useful first!
– The Lich King has a collection of special cards, and he’ll add one at random at the end of each of your turns. These are the cards you can draw into:
|2||Death Coil||Deal 5 damage to an enemy, or restore 5 Health to a friendly character.|
|2||Death Grip||Steal a minion from your opponent’s deck and add it to your hand.|
|2||Obliterate||Destroy a minion. Your hero takes damage equal to its Health.|
|3||Death and Decay||Deal 3 damage to all enemies.|
|4||Anti-Magic Shell||Give your minions +2 / +2 and “Can’t be targeted by spells or Hero Powers.”|
|5||Doom Pact||Destroy all minions. Remove the top card from your deck for each minion destroyed.|
|6||Army of the Dead||Remove the top 5 cards of your deck. Summony any minions removed.|
|7||Frostmourne||Deathrattle: Summon every minion killed by this [5 / 3] weapon.|
Card choices and substitutes
Here is a selection of the key cards in the current version of Taunt Druid: