I'm excited to share this deck with whoever is interested in trying it out. After a lot of trial and error with various hunter quest builds I believe I have come up with the best Hunter quest deck that can currently be put together. This deck is only about a week old, so some fine tuning may still be needed, and I invite anyone with ideas for ways to adjust and improve the deck to give their input. I have managed wins against some of the major deck archetypes out there (Murloc Paladin, Pirate & Quest Warrior, Rogue, etc).
The deck plays like a mid-range Hunter, and typically looks to finish around turns 7-10. The method for winning is pretty typical, get in whatever face damage you can while controlling the board.
Why the deck works (what makes this Quest Hunter different?):
The main difference between this deck and all of the other Hunter quest decks I've seen/tried, is that this deck does not rely solely on completing the quest to win the game, which is one of the reasons why there is no Tundra Rhino. That's right, there is no Tundra Rhino. The deck instead relies heavily on Elemental minion synergies to build first a wide board, and then a strong board, protecting your hero's HP with taunts. The quest is merely a helpful tool to that end, as cheap 8/8 minions are a key component to getting to the finish line.
As mentioned above the deck is still a work in progress. Some possible substitutions that might be worthwhile are:
Hungry Crabs: Replacing the Raptor Hatchlings with Hungry Crabs is a great choice if you're facing a lot of Paladins. Be careful not to just kill the first 1 mana Murloc you see, as a well-timed Murloc Warleader assassination can turn a board your way. Edit: This substitution was made and is currently being playtested but so far appears to be working fine. If you're not running into a lot of Murloc decks, or you don't want to spend the dust crafting the Crabs, put the Raptor Hatchlings back in. Against any decks not running Murlocs, the Raptors are the better choice.
Golakka Crawlers: I've yet to playtest putting Crawlers in the deck, but if you find yourself facing a lot of pirate warriors and quest rogues, these might be a good inclusion. In that case, I would replace the Volatile Elementals.
I always keep the quest. It serves a few purposes:
First, a savvy player will see you play the quest and will think you are easy pickings. You may be able to take advantage of their over confidence and may be able to goad them into over extending; hopefully by the time they realize what you're actually doing it will be too late. Second, your opponent will be expecting you are trying to finish the quest at all costs, so they will always expect your hand to be full of 1 cost minions, and they will also be expecting a Tundra Rhino finish, so they are likely to be playing around that possibility and may hang on to a Polymorph or Hex when their better play is to use the spell.
Other than that your goal is to curve out strong initially, so any 1 or 3 drop is probably worth hanging on to, unless you have more than two. A hand full of 3 drops is only good if you have the coin, but is a pretty good start. Mulligan out any Sunfury Protectors unless you have fire flies and expect you're facing a pirate warrior. I always keep 1 Volatile Elemental to use as control or as an activator for later turns if I think it will be useful, it can also make your opponent hesitate on their next minion play.
If you've subbed in Crabs or Crawlers, keep or ditch as is warranted by the class you are facing and the curve you have in the rest of your hand.
Elemental Synergy: Remember to plan ahead so your elemental triggers work the way they are supposed to. Sometimes keeping a Flame Elemental in hand is the right play, even if it means leaving a mana unspent, and sometimes making a weaker play on your current turn will set up a game swinging turn on the next one.
The Marsh Queen: If you do manage to finish the quest, remember that the Queen and her brood are a helpful tool to bring your opponent to zero HP, but they are not your only means of getting there. Her battlecry will water down your deck with a lot of cheap minions that draw cards, which is helpful, but may not fit your curve perfectly. If the better play is to hold on to her for a few turns, do so.
Giants: A crucial component to strong swing turns is getting the decks two Sea Giants out. Play or hold your 1 cost minions accordingly and don't be afraid to let an opponent's small minion or two survive a turn so you can surprise them when the battlefield seems overwhelming.
Tol'vir Wardens: Very rarely will the game go long enough that your Tol'vir wardens won't be drawing any 1-cost minions. It might be worthwhile in games that you expect to go the distance (control priest and quest warrior for example) to keep track of what 1-cost minions are left in the deck. If you have drawn all of your 1-cost minions before you have gotten your first Igneous, it may be best to hold a warden until after you've completed the quest, but let the board state make the decision rather than getting max value from your Warden's battlecry. Remember, you can win without completing the quest!
Servant of Kalimos: In general, bigger is better! Ozruk is an exception, you probably won't want to choose him, but in some cases he may be the right choice. Don't be afraid to grab another Igneous if the state of the game demands it.
Hero Power: I find that the deck curves out very well between the elementals and the 1 cost minions. In a typical game I often won't use the hero power until turn 8+.
Thanks! I hope you enjoy the deck and have success with it. Please share your ideas for fine tuning it to make it better. Feel welcome to send me a friend request to discuss ideas in game as well. Battletag: Match#1955
Replaced 2 x Thunder Lizards with 2 x Animal Companions
Replaced 2 x Raptor Hatchlings with 2 x Hungry Crabs (due to frequency of Murloc Paladins)
Replaced 1 x Sunfury Protector & 1 x Defender Of Argus with 2 x Mistress Of Mixtures