Hearthstone: How to beat the Lich King solo adventure with all 9 classes
Blizzard just unveiled their hardest Hearthstone solo adventure yet, the battle against the Lich King himself. Your goal? Defeat the Lich King with all nine classes in order to unlock a special Arthas paladin hero.
The only problem? The Lich King cheats…and cheats hard.
The Lich King’s Deck
Believe it or not, the Lich King does have a real deck and can run out of cards. The first step to beating him is knowing what you are up against.
His deck consists of:
- 2x Blizzard
- 2x Coldwraith
- 2x Shatter
- 2x Water Elemental
- 1x The Black Knight
- 2x Bonemare
- 2x Glacial Shard
- 1x Grim Necromancer
- 1x Maexxna
- 2x Saronite Chain Gang
- 2x Sludge Belcher
- 2x Anti-Magic Shell
- 2x Obliterate
- 2x Looming Presence
- 2x Skeletal Knight
- 2x Val’kyr Shadowguard
- 1x Special Frostrmourne
- 1x Class Challenge Card
When you don’t look at the obviously overpowered boss cards, the Lich King’s deck doesn’t look that powerful, and it’s not. So the key to beating him is, essentially, to prevent him from cheating.
For reference, this is what each of his unique cards do.
Val’kyr Shadowguard is a 3 mana 0/5 that, if it survives a turn, destroys itself and a random minion on your board.
Skeletal Knight is a 1 mana 2/3, which is far above the curve, but when it dies it gives you a random Knights of the Frozen Throne card, which isn’t bad.
Looming Presence allows the Lich King to draw 3 cards and gain 6 armor for only 3 mana which is just blatantly cheating.
Obliterate and Anti-Magic Shell are the same as the Death Knight cards you can use in normal play. They destroy a minion and deal damage equal to its health and give all your minions +2/+2 and “can’t be targeted by spells or hero powers” respectively.
The battle against the Lich King always follows the same pattern. He starts with 30 life and 30 armor. On turn 1 he will play a special 1 mana Class Challenge card which tips the rules in his favor somehow. Unless he has a Glacial Shard or Skeletal Knight in hand, this is all he will do, otherwise he will coin out a one drop. From that point on he will play on curve if possible and, if not possible, use his hero power to generate a 2/2 ghoul. Your general goal at this point should be to either control the board or, if possible, chase his life down before turn 7.
On turn 7 he will always play his Special Frostmourne. This removes all of his minions from the game and puts 6 2/6 Trapped Souls on the board in their place. As long as a single Trapped Soul remains the Lich King and his five strength weapon are immune.
Once you get rid of all these trapped souls Frostmourne shatters and the Lich King’s previous board comes back, fully healed, and play resumes as normal, except his hero power will have changed to “deal 1 damage to the opponent, +1 damage every turn.” He will be sure to use this hero power every single turn, effectively putting you into fatigue even though your deck hasn’t run out. At this point you have to close out the game soon or you will just wither and die.
General Tips and Strategies
Since a certain amount of the Lich King’s behavior is predictable there are certain strategies that you can employ across all classes.
Since you always go first, you can play your first turn without having to worry about whatever challenge card he has up his sleeve. This is usually your opportunity to set up a good early offense. Make your first turn count as much as possible. If you have no good turn one play, I highly suggest restarting because the game is already lost.
The Lich King will never do anything other than play his special Frostmourne card on turn 7. He won’t even attack with the minions he already has on the board (though he will attack with Frostmourne itself). This is basically another free turn to prepare for the second phase of battle. This means you can play Doomsayer on turn 7 and it will always trigger, skipping phase 2 entirely.
Similarly, the Lich King will never play any extra cards in phase two whatsoever. If you can kill all but one Trapped Soul then the maximum damage he can deal a turn is 7. If you can heal more than that, you can just wait for his hand to fill up and eventually mill all of his power cards away.
The Lich King is very vulnerable to board wipes. The only “sticky” minion he has is Sludge Belcher. Prioritize board wipes over spot removal, since Anti-Magic Shell pretty much nullifies it. If you can play a control deck, then be sure to jam every single wipe you can inside it.
There are a few generic strategies that work for basically every class. Murloc rushdown decks that can reduce The Lich King’s health to 0 before turn 7 are a good generic strategy. In addition, alarm-o-bot decks do a decent job at sneaking out value in the early game, since The Lich King usually doesn’t have enough board presence by turn 3 to kill it.
Finally, the only turns you want to focus on controlling the board are turns 6 and 7 so that you can mitigate damage from phase 2. Otherwise, this is definitely a fight of “beat him before he can beat you.”
Individual Class Strategies
The Priest class is actually a freebie, meant to ensure everyone can get the free pack. The only thing the Lich King does is disable your emotes. Just take your best deck and go to town.
The Druid’s class challenge sees the Lich King destroying all minions of mana cost 3 or lower in your deck, hand, and on the battlefield. Fortunately, Jade Druid, the highest tier deck in the meta right now, doesn’t run any minions at 3 mana or lower. Just keep summoning ever bigger Jade Golems and watch the Lich King fall. It’s hilarious that the meta is so broken right now that even the Lich King’s underhanded cheating can’t beat tier 1 decks.
The Lich King turns every minion in your deck and hand into a 1/1 for this challenge. However, this doesn’t apply to any tokens summoned or to anything that gets evolved. So, of course, Evolve Shaman is the way to go. Fill the board, evolve it, bloodlust for a bunch of damage. Alternatively, Jade Shaman can get you similar value, since the 1/1 debuff doesn’t affect jade golems. Whatever you play, put two Devolves in your deck. This is what you want to use in phase two. Devolving all of the Lich King’s Trapped Souls will end phase two, but since the board is filled with their devolved forms his old minions won’t come back. There just isn’t any space for them.
The Lich King deals 2 damage to you on turn one for every minion in your deck. This is particularly troublesome considering how minion-based Hunter decks are. You really have two options here. Either dust off the old Barnes/Y’Shaarj combo deck, taking only 2 or 4 damage on your first turn, or build a deck with 14-15 minions and Molten Giants and mulligan until you have both Molten Giants in your starting hand. Because your health is so low, you will be able to drop both giants on turn one, and having two 8/8s on the field easily overcomes anything The Lich King can throw at you. Do a little board control and go for the face and you will win in no time.
The Lich King deals 2 damage to you on turn one for every duplicate of a card you have in your deck. Apparently no one told The Lich King that Renolock was a meta dominant deck for years. Just build your favorite Reno Jackson deck and play as you usually would. It will still be a hard fought battle, but at least it won’t feel like The Lich King is cheating. Alternatively you can use the same Molten Giant strategy we detailed above.
On turn one the Lich King removes every single spell in your hand and deck from the game, basically shutting down any Miracle Rogue or Control Rogue strategies. There are a couple ways to go about this challenge. First, there’s nothing wrong with including a few spells in your deck. Since they will just get removed anyway, this just means you are playing with a smaller deck making your draws more consistent. Then you can either use either generic strategy (alarm-o-bot or murlocs), or build a Deathrattle Rogue. Build up to N’Zoth on turn 10 and you should be able to overwhelm The Lich King with value. Just be sure you have enough board presence and poison effects to get through phase 2.
Now things are getting hard. On turn one the Lich King will gain 100 armor! No rushing him down this time. This presents a problem because no matter how well you play, he will likely outlast you in phase 3. Once again there are two ways to tackle this challenge. First, you can build a Patron Warrior deck. The Lich King has few ways to kill your 3/3 patrons outright, granting you infinitely spawning board presence as he tries to take you out. Combined with an Armorsmith to keep you in the game and a Frothing Berserker, you will quickly find yourself dealing 30 damage a turn and gaining 7 armor or more. There’s a weakness to this strategy, however, in that losing your Patrons or Frothing Berserker accidentally creates an instant lose scenario.
Your other option is to exploit a bug in the Lich King’s A.I. using Kel’Thuzad and taunt minions (specifically public defenders). Build a deck that runs those two cards and brawl and wait until phase two. Then brawl to reduce the Lich King’s board to only one Trapped Soul. Afterwards, play Kel’Thuzad and a Public Defender. The Lich King will never kill the Public Defender. Why? Because any time the Public Defender gets within death range, the A.I. checks to see whether its move will reduce the overall stats on the board or increase them. It sees that if it kills the public defender, 7 stats will be added to the board when it resurrects with Kel’Thuzad’s end of turn ability. Since The Lich King can only ever do 7 damage in this phase, the A.I. looks at attacking as pointless and simply passes the turn over and over again. You can use this opportunity to armor up, play massive creatures behind your taunt wall, and wait until the Lich King mills his entire deck. Meanwhile, use cards like Dead Man’s Hand to prevent your own deck from hitting fatigue. Afterward, you can just kill the Trapped Soul, ride out the last few threats in the Lich Kings hand and coast along till victory. Although this sounds easy, it’s harder than it seems. Getting Kel’Thuzad, Public Defender, and Brawl in hand before turn 7 is pretty much a gamble and you’ll find yourself restarting often.
The Mage has one of the hardest class challenges since the Lich King reduces your HP to one right at the beginning of the game. Without a plan, you’ll die the next turn.
While this may be the hardest challenge, it’s also the one you can approach in the most ways. First of all you can just use the Molten Giant strategy that was outlines for Hunter and Warlock. Add in a few Duplicates and your constant stream of free Molten Giants will simply be too much for him. Second, you can use a combination of Kabal Lackey and Counterspell to counter the first turn life reduction. You can also use Kabal Lackey and Mana Bind to reduce the Lich King’s health to 1 as well! Finally, you can simply run a standard Exodia Mage build and kill him with an infinite stream of fireballs.
Regardless of the many ways you can approach this challenge you’ll find that you need to restart often. Nearly every strategy requires an opening hand of the exact right cards or else you will die on turn two. So the best advice I can give you is keep reshuffling until you win.
Paladin is my vote for the absolute toughest challenge of all nine. The Lich King uses a passive effect that makes him take control of any minions that dies on your side of the battlefield. This makes controlling the board practically impossible. It also makes rushing him down impossible, since your own minions will kill your tempo. You can try to insta-kill him with Uther of the Ebon Blade’s ability, but the Lich King can just gain control of your horsemen, using the ability against you.
That’s not to say this challenge is impossible. First of all, buff spells are a great way to get value out of your minions. When the Lich King gains control of them they won’t retain their buffs. Second, use Doomsayer liberally. If you can get him to go off, he will clear the board not once, but twice since dying places him on the Lich King’s side of the battlefield. This will give you two turns to set up an offense. You can also play cards who deal damage to the board as a deathrattle effect. This effectively doubles their damage and keeps the rest of the Lich King’s minions cleared.
The best strategy I have seen so far is the Anyfin OTK strategy. Killing a murloc on your and his size of the board adds two to the death pool. This essentially lets you fill the pool with Murloc Warleaders and bust the lich king down on turn 10 if you can survive that long.
And that’s our strategy guide for beating Hearthstone’s hardest challenge yet. Let us know in the comments how you beat the Lich King, or if you need specific decklists for any of these classes.