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Hearthstone Tombs of Terror Boss Battle - How to beat Vesh, Plague Lord of Murlocs

Mmmrrrggglll like an Egyptian.

Vesh comes at you with a gigantic 300 health. This battle won’t be easy, and his special abilities throw another spanner in the works. The Plague Lord bosses test your deck’s versatility and ability to overcome a foe that goes through a whole series of iterations. You won’t just be able to cheese these guys like you could back in the Frozen Throne days.

For more Tombs of Terror guides, check out our Tombs of Terror guide hub where we’ve got info on unlocks, Signature Treasures and more!

How to deck build for Vesh, Plague Lord of Murlocs

  • If you want an easier time, especially early on in the battle, pick up Finley and the Murloc Crusade deck.
  • The New “Recruits” Hero Power is a solid way to keep Murloc synergies reliable and leave the door open for creative deck building later on.
  • With non-Finley classes, things could get a little tougher. Ensure you’ve got some board clears on deck ready to go. Treasures like Runaway Gyrocopter massively helped us when clearing Vesh in one attempt.
  • You’ll need the potential for wide boards. Relying on a few big minions isn’t going to cut it thanks to Vesh’s seemingly constant supply of Plague of Murlocs spells, as well as the stage 3 Hero Power Mur-nado.

Stage 1

Vesh’s first Hero Power - Made of Murlocs - gives them immunity to your attacks at the start of your battle. Instead, you’ll have to grind the fight out by killing off a huge Murloc army. If you’re struggling with this phase over a couple of runs, give Finley a try, and start with his Murloc Crusade deck. You’ll be able to draft Murlocs throughout your run as well, so make sure you get as many finned friends as possible. Your Murlocs damage Vesh during phase 1 too, so trading yours off into theirs doubles up on damage dealt.

The Twist - Plague of Murlocs, helps you out here if you’re struggling of course, periodically delivering fresh fish to both your board and Vesh’s. With access to Finley’s Scales of Justice Signature Treasure, this will become even easier.

Even without these advantages though, the first stage of Vesh’s battle is all about patience. Don’t slam down everything in your hand, as Vesh loves to cast Plague of Murlocs to turn your big minions into little ones. Wide boards in general work well though, so if you’ve got enough fuel to reload then this tactic will work nicely.

Sometimes, your deck just isn't suited for the encounter you’re in though, and if this is the case just kill as many Murlocs as you can before you fall and go back for a second try. Something to watch out for: like all of these raid boss-style encounters, Vesh can bring their deck back from the brink. It may look like there’s nothing in hand, but an Underbelly Angler combined with a single other Murloc can bring back a terrifying horde of enemies looking to take you down. Play carefully, keep Vesh’s board in check, and stage 1 should be doable.

Stage 2

Vesh transforms after taking 100 damage, into his Ashes Anew form. This new Hero Power allows him to destroy a friendly Murloc in exchange for a Scaly Golem, a 0/4 Taunt minion that gives all Murlocs +1/+1 upon its death. This stage is all about keeping Vesh’s board in check consistently, as with a couple of Scaly Golems on board your fight could be cut short.

We’d probably say this is the simplest of the three phases, given the lack of silly shenanigans in play. You basically just need to use your resources wisely and keep killing off Vesh’s Murlocs before they start getting buffed.

Scaly Golem is another card that works on ALL Murlocs, not just Vesh’s. If you’ve got a couple of Murlocs on while this utter buffoon of a Plague Lord has some Scaly Golems on board, kill them off and reap the benefits for yourself!

At this point in the game, Vesh will start bringing out the big guns. You’ll want copies of board clears available if at all possible, as you never know when the Anyfin Can Happen + Everyfin Is Awesome combo will place a premature end to your run.

Stage 3

Finally, you’ve brought this fiend down to 100 health. Whether it took a few tries or you’re on a heroic gauntlet as a one-murloc-army, this is the last phase, and Vesh isn’t holding back.

The final Hero Power, Mur-nado, shuffles all minions into Vesh’s deck for 15 mana. A reverse Psychic Scream, this ability gets its cost reduced by 1 mana for each Murloc that dies. If you’ve been battling it out this far, you’ll know that there’s a lot of Murlocs to go around. We’d recommend coming back at Vesh with a murloc-free deck if you’re coming back to finish his last 100 health, as this will mean the Mur-nado is discounted more slowly.

After each Mur-nado, the initial cost increases by 1 mana and the Hero Power is reset, so once Vesh gets it down to 0 mana, that doesn’t mean you’ll never get on the board again! Try to push damage when you can, but be aware of when that Hero Power gets into reach. They won’t always wait for it to hit 0 mana, if you’re threatening a lot of damage it might come out sooner. This can be a good way to exploit the AI’s fear, as you can threaten them with a big board whilst keeping extra fuel in your hand to play after a Mur-nado.

It’s not possible to just kill 0 Murlocs and keep the Hero Power out of reach, so it’s not worth it to try. Instead, keep your offensive and defensive utility close to your chest to react to Vesh’s plays. A 0-mana Mur-nado followed by Anyfin Can Happen could spell defeat for you if you’ve not saved up some way to clear it.

At the end of the day, remember that you’re not always going to manage to beat the Plague Lords first time. There’s a reason you’re allowed to go back and fight them at the health total you’ve whittled them down to, so dust yourself off and try again if this big Murloc monstrosity gets the better of you.

Check out our Tombs of Terror Guide Hub for more help on beating these big fellas.

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James Law avatar

James Law

Former Guides Writer

James was part of Rock Paper Shotgun's guides team from 2020-2021, bringing his expert knowledge about FPS games, Hearthstone, Path Of Exile and more from his time at Metabomb. He's also a dab hand at Hitman 3, and making his own jam - things which may or may not be related to one another.