The full set of cards for March of the Lich King has been revealed a little while ago, and we're nearing the time when they can finally become a part of our collection. Still not sure what to make of Priest or what kind of decks to play? We've broken down the class archetypes for the upcoming expansion, discussed the new cards, and gathered a variety of theorycraft decks from streamers, pros, and community members to guide you on Day 1.
First off, there is a lot of other relevant content that you might be interested in:
- You can find full information about the upcoming set in our March of the Lich King expansion guide.
- You can create and share your own decks featuring all these new cards via our deckbuilder.
- The new Rewards Track has been fully detailed. Get a head start on the early XP gains and stay prepared for launch!
- Major Patch 25.0 (plus hotfixes) has prepared the ground for the expansion with various game mode updates and features.
- Need a more detailed overview of March of the Lich King themes and mechanics? The initial announcement coverage has it all.
- Expect special Signature cards to add to your collection, and improved duplicate protection coming with the new Reroll Feature.
- Remember, you are able to open your packs faster than usual - should you wish to!
Now, onto what's approaching ever closer. Before we jump into a variety of potential decks, here is a quick look at the class in the upcoming expansion:
Lich King Priest - Quick Impressions
- The strangest of them all. There is just as much Shadow spell school support as there are smaller Undead to pick from.
- On top of that, the Resurrection mechanic makes a peculiar comeback - except it's not focused on big minions.
- A lot of existing class archetypes might still stick around: from Elwynn Boar through Naga/Bless, to Control/Thief.
- If there is one card that Priest loves to abuse, it's Radiant Elemental. Dreamy combos and even OTKs become a certain possibility with Sister Svalna (or namely, the generated Vision of Darkness for permanent value).
- The most reliable Priest focus? As always, just being annoying. Something something to torture your opponents into (un-)death.
Lich King Priest - Expansion Cards & Archetypes
We might be in for a mix of the old with the new. There's the obvious Shadow + Undead swarm option for an 'Aggro Priest', there is something to reconsider Deathrattles with added Resurrection (plus Reborn) for a more grindy gameplay, and there is all that value for endless Control or Combo takes. Let's hope something sticks the landing.
Undead + Shadow Priest
It's pretty much impossible to cleanly separate the two going into March of the Lich King. And there is going to be a lot of overlap between certain new cards, as they might very well belong in a few distinct Priest packages. Oh, the headaches for the organized mind.
In any case, this tale begins with a different card from a year ago: one notorious Darkbishop Benedictus. His reign was rather short lived and very much backed up by then overpowered Mindrender Illucia. Now it might be time for the last hurrah. One potential problem? There aren't that many quality Undead minions in the set, or in Standard as a whole.
The value of Undying Allies remains questionable if we can't consistently set up for a board swarm to take advantage of (remember Voidtouched Attendant?) and protect it against some form of AoE - even then, nothing is guaranteed against Spammy Arcanist where Reborn could ironically work against the Priest's best efforts. And a more minion-focused deck does not synergize that well with the actual Shadow spell package. Still, with Grave Digging being such a cheap card draw and High Cultist Basaleph a very respectable refill, perhaps the undying persistence could pay off. Shadow Word: Undeath looks like a fun reverse Holy Nova. Plus anything Deathrattle also has Amulet of Undying to fall back on, of course.
Shadow + Combo Priest
The above problem remains - if we don't include enough Shadow spells, the otherwise great new 1-drop becomes very disappointing. It has to be consistent to be any useful. Ah, where were you about a year ago, Crystalsmith Cultist (probably wouldn't have made the cut in a minion-heavy deck). Look at you, not even ascended into Undeath (although then it'd make for a poor resurrect target, so we'll allow it).
Amusingly (?) enough, Animate Dead - while still very handy for any Aggressive Shadow Priests - might see its full potential unlocked elsewhere. The aforementioned "Over 9000" power level of Radiant Elemental is what dreams are made of. Or endless nightmares, depending on whom you side with. Add Sister Svalna and the generated Vision of Darkness to the mix, and we have the makings of a potentially infinite Discover chain of discounted Shadow spells, which becomes repeatable on the consequent turns with a bit of luck. OTK, APM, what have you. Kind of scary.
Or perhaps Animate Dead just belongs with the good ol' Bless or Boar Priest. Which would be fun for one side and not the other. That's Priest in a nutshell for you, sapping opponents' will to life until they succumb to Undeath. A fitting theme for this expansion.
Other + Control Priest
The unavoidable overlap. Mind Eater might end up being too slow for a more Aggro-focused Priest, but there is always that Thief/Control aspect to rely on. Similarly with Sister Svalna, the Vision of Darkness could turn into an infinite value engine, leaning towards one of the least beloved aspects of the class: grinding one's opponents until they are finally ready to concede once some 30+ turns in a game have passed.
If there is one issue with Vision of Darkness sans a multiplied Radiant Elemental, it would be its cost. 3 mana is a lot to pay for a simple Discover option, considering that the found spell then also has its own cost. And the Control archetypes kind of love slotting in a number of expensive cards for the added value. It doesn't all synergize as well as it might seem at a glance.
Lich King Priest - Top Neutral Cards
Scourge Rager the best Rager (yet)? Not so great when played from hand, but very much menacing once resurrected on the board. And it wouldn't be too hard to end up with several copies. The rest is just the more or less notable Undead from March of the Lich King - they might find a number of applications if the whole thing ever takes off. Incorporeal Corporal offers a number of directions that could be taken on any given turn, and forces opponents to ponder whether they should attempt to remove it with uneven trading, or risk taking that 5 damage to the face eventually.
The other card that might deserve a honorable mention would be The Sunwell even if it's not stricly 'new' (just still a part of the Lich King expansion, technically). Take any value or combo Priest deck, and there will undoubtedly be players desperately trying to make it work or justify its inclusion. Even if the results haven't been terribly impressive so far.
Lich King Priest - Day 1 Hearthstone Decks to Try
Not sure what to play for the class while we march alongside the Lich King? We've gathered a handful of early deck ideas from all across the Hearthstone tavern just to help you out:
Old Guardian's ShadowUndead Priest
One Amulet of Undying stands out. Unsurprisngly, Crystalsmith Cultist doesn't make the cut as being too conditional. Beyond that, it's all about trying to strike the best balance between the quality Undead minions, Shadow spells, and some of the older staples. Welcome back, Darkbishop Benedictus.
Brian Kibler's ShadowUndead Priest
Similar to the above, for the most part. But Xyrella, the Devout instead of Sister Svalna for the top end.
Superior David's Svalna OTK Priest
The kind of OTK where you could attempt to kill yourself with Psyfiend. Technically, it still counts as somebody dying! Other than that, the setup goes as already covered in a section above: get your Radiant Elemental into the resurrect pool for Animate Dead, find Sister Svalna for Vision of Darkness, then test your APM while discovering and chaining all these discounted Shadow spells.
Kranich's Svalna OTK Priest - Lich King Theorycraft
Plaguespreader, Amulet of Undying, and Identity Theft added onto the familiar shell, because why not take griefing your opponents that one step further.
More Class Coverage for March of the Lich King
Want to look at what we've put together for another March of the Lich King contender? The navigation links below can take you there in an instant!
What do you think of Priest's card package for the upcoming expansion? Which decks are you going to take for a spin once March of the Lich King goes live on December 6? Is there something else from your favorite content creator that we didn't include here? Let us know in the comments!
We not getting one of these for Death Knight?
We got a different one. Death Knight wasn't a class that any one of us had a chance to ever play before this expansion's launch, so just about everything would've been only pure speculation and theorycrafting. Plus that's 68 new cards and the Rune System vs "only" 10 that each other class has received.
I'd been thinking it would focus on the ten cards from MotLK plus good neutrals. I guess would be incomplete if it didn't cover every DK archetype and the cards that support them. I haven't gotten to the linked article yet, but as long as there is a place to show the DK decks from the theorycraft streams...
Does anyone know about this "a friendly undead died after your last turn"?
It somehow confuses me.
You and me both, it's just such a peculiar wording. Basically means it counts both your current (edit) and your opponent's last turn. For comparison, many cards from the earlier expansions only looked at what happened on your own previous turn i.e. "played an elemental".
It completely confuses people... they must have a tutorial-like video about this...
I don't think it counts your previous turn. It counts your opponent's turn, but also the first part of your current turn.
Agree, it will take some getting used to for sure!
I think about opponent's turn too but its still too vague...
You are right, I'm being unclear. 'Current' for your own turn might be a better way to put it. As in "after your last turn counts whatever happens between the moment you passed turn to your opponent and the moment you get to play the card in question".
(I don't think I'm ever getting used to that wording, makes it all sound more obscure than it should be)
It also counts any “end of turn” effects from your last turn. For example, the Death Knight hero power token that has charge but dies at the end of the turn (yes, I realize this is a Priest thread lol)
Hey, it's good to know all the same! I assume those "end of turn" effects then exist in that grey area, as you've technically already passed the turn to your opponent while they resolve meanwhile.