Jade Druid is a deck that tries to continuously summon Jade Golems until they become so large that it becomes impossible for the opponent to deal with them. The Druid has access to ramp cards that let you play your cards earlier than they would otherwise be able to. In addition, the Druid has access to heavy card draw with two [Nourish] and two [Ultimate Infestation]. The combination of Jade cards with heavy card draw is so powerful because the extra card draw will draw the Druid into even more Jade cards, which, of course, become more powerful the more of them the Druid has.
In this article, I will explain Jade Druid’s playstyle, core cards of the deck, tech cards, and offer a few example deck lists. In part two of this series, I will go more in-depth about how to play this unique deck.
Jade Druid’s early turns are quite passive because there are only a few cards that cost less than four mana, with [Wild Growth], [Jade Blossom], [Jade Idol], and tech cards like [Living Roots] or [Mulch]. If you have at least one [Wild Growth] or [Jade Blossom] – which you should, because you often hard mulligan for these cards – it’s usually best to ramp before playing [Wrath]. The only exception is if your opponent plays a minion that must die, like [Vicious Fledgling] and [Steward of Darkshire].
In the midgame – which begins at four mana – your turns are often quite linear, because you’ll often play one card a turn. If you draw ramp cards like [Mire Keeper] or [Nourish], keep in mind that you’ll have even more mana crystals when planning out your future turns.
Your goal against aggressive decks like Pirate Warrior should be to stabilise the board. You should recognise that you don’t need to play large Jades to win, and that the cards that really win you the game are cards like [Swipe], [Spreading Plague], and [Malfurion the Pestilent]. Conversely, if you’re playing against control decks, your goal should be either to play your Jade minions, or to draw cards so that you can play even more Jade minions in future turns.
Core cards in Jade Druid
If you opt to play a typical Jade Druid deck, then there are about twenty-three core cards in the deck. I highly recommend playing all of the core cards.
2x [Jade Idol]
2x [Wild Growth]
2x [Jade Blossom]
2x [Jade Spirit]
2x [Jade Behemoth]
2x [Spreading Plague]
[Malfurion the Pestilent]
2x [Ultimate Infestation]
Tech cards, with explanations
Mark of the Lotus
Mind Control Tech
Dr. Boom, The Lich King, Medivh, Ragnaros
Example Decklist & Stats
In October, I reached legend with a fairly standard Jade Druid deck that included two [Living Roots], [Brann Bronzebeard], one [Mulch], and two [Mind Control Tech] and I had a ridiculous 70% win rate. In November, I played a slightly different deck that cut both Mind Control Techs for an extra Mulch and a Mark of the Lotus. I’ve decided to feature the deck I played in November below.
Two more example decklists
I have prepared two Jade Druid decks that are completely different from the commonly accepted version, and don’t play all of the twenty-three core cards. The deck below is similar to JAB’s fast Jade Druid, but I’ve taken the liberty of adapting the deck for the Wild format by cutting the [Spellbreaker] for a second [Jade Spirit] and the two [Golakka Crawler] for two [Living Roots].
Another possible way to build Jade Druid is to remove Jade summoners like [Jade Spirit] and [Jade Behemoth], and instead play two [Gadgetzan Auctioneer] alongside two [Arcane Giant] and many 1-cost spells. This Jade Druid cycles through its entire deck extremely quickly so that it can start to shuffle more Jade Idols and play them.
I don’t think the deck below is very competitive, but it’s something interesting you can try if you want to play something offbeat.
Conclusion / Part 2 coming soon
This is the end of the introductory / deckbuilding part of my Jade Druid guide. Check back here on Tuesday for the second part of this guide, which will include gameplay tips and matchup-specific advice.