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Dragon Priest deck list guide - Rise of Shadows - Hearthstone (April 2019)

Our guide to getting started with a Rise of Shadows take on Dragon Priest.

It shouldn't come as too much of a surprise to learn that Dragon Priest is a deck that seeks to exploit the synergies that exist between the pool of Dragon-related cards in the Hearthstone library. Many of these Dragon synergies relate to increasing the stats of other cards - making them either more powerful or more resilient - or triggering additional powers if you’re holding Dragon cards in hand.

Dragon Priest is nothing particularly new in Hearthstone, but everyone’s attention was elsewhere and it wasn’t expected to have much of a resurgence in the Rastakhan’s Rumble meta. It still isn’t an incredibly popular deck right now, but is finding some play by those who enjoy their Anduin fix and want to see it succeed.

In the latest of our Rastakhan’s Rumble deck guides, we'll show you how to get to grips with this long-running deck archetype. We'll start with a look at the latest deck list, outline the basic strategy behind playing it, and then give you some Mulligan tips so you get off to a good start. Finally, we'll run you through all of the most crucial Dragon-powered combos that are part and parcel of the deck.


During the busy launch period, we’re adding theorycrafted deck lists into all of our established guides so you have something new to play with in the new Rise of Shadows meta. Here’s Dragon Priest, courtesy of OldGuardian:

2 x Lazul's Scheme2 x Firetree Witchdoctor
1 x Chameleos2 x Nightmare Amalgam
2 x Power Word: Shield2 x Twilight Drake
2 x Northshire Cleric2 x Scaleworm
2 x EVIL Conscripter2 x Dragonmaw Scorcher
1 x Madame Lazul2 x Crowd Roaster
2 x Omega Medic
2 x Hench-Clan Shadequill
2 x Convincing Infiltrator
2 x Cabal Shadow Priest

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


More great Priest guides:

When we know what a refined version of the deck list looks like, we’ll be overhauling this article completely.

Everything below this point refers to a previous version of the guide, and will be updated as soon as we can.

Dragon Priest deck list and strategy

Here’s a deck list for Dragon Priest that’s been updated for the launch of the Rastakhan set and is seeing the most play right now. We’ll continue to tweak it if we spot any major changes over the coming days.

2 x Northshire Cleric2 x Firetree Witchdoctor
2 x Power Word: Shield2 x Wild Pyromancer
2 x Mind Blast1 x Gluttonous Ooze
2 x Shadow Visions2 x Scaleworm
2 x Twilight Acolyte2 x Twilight Drake
2 x Duskbreaker2 x Dragonmaw Scorcher
1 x Cabal Shadow Priest2 x Primordial Drake
2 x Psychic Scream1 x Alexstrasza
1 x Shadowreaper Anduin

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


General strategy

Dragon Priest aims to mix together a dollop of classic Control Priest with the powerful synergies found in Dragon cards to create a singular strong deck. With all the removal and survival options in the early game, Dragon Priest scales in power as you approach the late game with more powerful minions, and a hero card that can help you move towards a more aggressive playstyle.

When playing Dragon Priest, try to build your way towards establishing a solid presence by the mid-game, and use clever trading and removal cards to keep the opponent at bay until that moment comes. Duskbreaker provides immense value in the context of controlling the game and, along with other impactful cards such as Psychic Scream, Twilight Drake and Primordial Drake, is key to victory with Dragon Priest.

Early game: Take a slow pace in the early game. You can spend your turns slowly healing up the chip damage you may take from other decks, while looking for ways to draw cards using Northshire Cleric. Meanwhile, Firetree Witchdoctor is a useful new card for you to Discover additional spells as you’re moving into the mid game.

Mid game: Now is when you can properly start responding to whatever game plan your opponent is taking. If they’re a fast aggro deck, you have big board clears from Duskbreaker and Wild Pyromancer that can instantly undo all of their early game work. As for matches against slower decks, you should be able to drop a very high health Twilight Drake on curve to challenge them. You might even be able to pinch one of your opponent’s creatures using Cabal Shadow Priest.

Late game: Here’s where Dragon Priest can truly assert itself in a match. Dropping Primordial Drake onto the board can usually clear off any of your foe’s minions that are clinging on for dear life, while also leaving a huge Taunt body in play. If you play Shadowreaper Anduin, you can look to shift gears from a control game to a more aggressive one with the new two damage Hero Power. Meanwhile, Alexstrasza is an excellent way to take a chunk of your opponent’s health away in a split second, or to heal yourself up if needed.

Dragon Priest Mulligan guide

The following cards are all useful early-game minions, and we list them here in a rough order of importance:

  • 1. Northshire Cleric: You can start to get this draw engine going in the early game while you have little else to do. It’s much easier when buffed with a Power Word: Shield too.
  • 2. Firetree Witchdoctor: Decent two-drop that will also allow you to Discover a spell you might need for later in the game.
  • 3. Duskbreaker: An excellent catch-up card if you find yourself getting overrun by aggro. When the effect triggers it should be able to kill everything on the board.
  • 4. Twilight Drake: As you probably aren’t playing too many cards in your first few turns, this can gain a rather significant Health boost and present a big problem for your opponent.

Dragon Priest combos and synergies

However familiar you may be with the concept of Dragon Priest it’s always worth brushing up on how all the important combos and synergies work in the deck.

- If you’re holding another Dragon in hand then you’ll activate the effect of Firetree Witchdoctor and be able to Discover a new spell.

- Shadow Visions allows you to Discover a copy of a spell in your deck. You can use this to find an answer you need that could be buried deep in your draw pile.

- Gluttonous Ooze doesn't just destroy your opponent's weapon, it also grants you Armor equal to that weapon's Attack value at the time it was destroyed.

- You can use Twilight Acolyte as a way to deal with an opposing minion that has high Attack power. If you have a Dragon in hand when it’s played, you can swap the targeted minions Attack with the measly two Attack on Twilight Acolyte.

- Duskbreaker is a very powerful card for this archetype. Assuming you have another Dragon in your hand on the turn its played, all minions on the board (friendly or otherwise) will take three points of damage. Ouch.

- Make sure you have a reasonable hand size when you play Twilight Drake, as it will gain one point of Health per card you’re holding.

- You can use Alexstrasza as both a way to remove a lot of your opponent’s health in a single blow, or to heal yourself up in a desperation play if you’re low.

Card choices and substitutes

Dragon Priest isn’t just about throwing every Dragon card into the deck and hoping it works. These are the important ones you need for the archetype to be most effective:

Firetree Witchdoctor: Pretty much guaranteed to give you a free bonus spell when played, given all the Dragons you run in the list.

Twilight Acolyte: Essentially, this is a very good way to deal with big minions while also using their Attack power in your favour. You can run Shadow Word: Death in its place, although it isn’t as effective.

Duskbreaker: Your big area of effect removal on Turn 4 that will likely kill all minions on your opponent’s side of the board, as well as their chances to end the game early.

Twilight Drake: Another hugely impactful four-drop. If you bulk it up to a large enough Health value then it can be a real problem for opponents to deal with easily.

Cabal Shadow Priest: The tempo swing in your favour when you play this card and steal one of your opponent’s minions is huge.

Psychic Scream: Some late game mass removal that can give you some time to take control of the game after too.

Primordial Drake: A huge Taunt minion that is difficult to get through for your opponent. The Battlecry effect is very useful for clearing off any small creatures remaining on the board.

Shadowreaper Anduin: Yet another way for Priest to come back against an overwhelming board. Once it’s down you’ll get a new hero power that deals two damage to a target and can push you towards a more aggressive playstyle to finish the game.

Alexstrasza: You opponent may think they’re having a great time still sitting on 30 Health, but this Dragon allows you to drop them down to 15 in an instant. Remember, you can use it on yourself for some emergency healing if needed, too.

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About the Author
John Bedford avatar

John Bedford


John is Metabomb's Editor in Chief and looks after the day to day running of the site when he's not writing about Hearthstone.

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