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Braum Asol Field Testing

After their success solving Legna's URF Hypothesis, MAIM Corp's brightest minds now tackle a difficult challenge: can Iceborn and Space Dragons coexist in the same deck? A deck guide like no other!

 

About the Authors

 

MonteXristo has been playing the game since closed beta and has consistently made it to masters every season he’s been active.  His accomplishments include having peaked in the top 20, taking first place in the “Streamer Sideboard Showdown” and being the 24th America’s player to Master in the ‘Guardians of the Ancient”.  When he’s not writing for Mastering Runeterra he keeps his card slinging skills sharp by playing in the “Liga Latinoamericana de Legends of Runeterra”, or LRA, with his team The Wobbly Wombats! 

 

Herko Kerghans loves rows, columns and spreadsheets. And data. And numbers! Crunchy, crunchy numbers. He spends an inordinate amount of time checking and tracking what’s new, what’s hot and what’s fresh in Balco’s and Legna’s Meta Reports.

 

 

‘Optimized’ List

 

Regions
Freljord
34 cards
Mount Targon
6 cards
Rarities
29 300
champion
6
epic
5
rare
12
common
17
Mana cost
0
0
0
1
3
2
9
3
9
4
6
5
2
6
11
7+
Champions
6
4
Braum
3
10
Aurelion Sol
3
Landmarks
3
4
Blighted Ravine
3
Followers
10
2
Faces of the Old Ones
3
3
Kindly Tavernkeeper
2
3
Wyrding Stones
3
8
It That Stares
2
Spells
21
3
Flash Freeze
2
3
Ice Shard
2
4
Avalanche
3
5
Catalyst of Aeons
3
5
Starshaping
3
6
Harsh Winds
2
8
Voices of the Old Ones
1
9
Buried in Ice
2
12
Feel The Rush
3

 

Industrial Mining Corporation

 

To: Dr. Illya Pentaak – Director, Second Laboratory of Aeronautic Yokedevilry

Illya,

I need your help.

I nearly bumped into Nokzau this morning. Nearly: I managed to hide behind the vending machine before he saw me.

Illya… he had that look in his eyes.

You know, that look? Like a rock climber who, having just vanquished his harshest cliff yet, proudly stands atop the peak and stares at the valley which, like a conquered adversary, lies defeated at his feet? Pearls of sweat dripping down his sculpted torso, god-like abs laboring for breath after the titanic struggle against rough stone and relentless gravity, eyes filled with the calm of achievement?

You wish. No, of course not that look. I mean the other one: the “If you mess my budget, I’m gonna mess you” look. Yeah, that one.

At first I was more surprised than scared, to be honest. I thought our resounding success field-testing the Riven-Swain prototype would mean you and I wouldn’t have to face Nokzau for a couple of weeks. But when I entered the lab, after I was sure he was gone, the plot thickened. And so did the atmosphere… Oh boy, the stench! I know urine when I smell it, and it hung all over the room.

Coming from the corner or the lab. Where, huddling by the BALCO, that rat-faced nerd Van der Grind sobbed and moaned like a kid who’s been told momma ain’t never coming back. You could almost feel sorry for him… almost.

I sat on my favorite stool as I mustered the willpower to speak plainly, rather than yelling. “Van der Grind,” I said, “what have you done this time?” Budget spreadsheets flared furiously through my mind—we were on track with everything, and Nokzau wouldn’t be bothered to come underground for just a trifle. “What got our fine CEO so worked up? Come on, tell me. We’ll fix this.”

 

“Y-yeah,” he said, some semblance of calm washing over him. “Yeah, yeah.”

“Yeah, what? What happened?”

“I, eh… The A-asol Ramp-p P-project?”

“What about it?”

“W-we s-shut it down three w-weeks ago…”

“Yeah, I know. It was hopeless C-rate crap, according to the numbers the BALCO spit for your equations…

 

 

…and I told you it was hopeless before you even fed them to the BALCO, but I somehow allowed you to convince me to try and waste precious cycles and broadband to satisfy your curiosity. ‘Just in case’, you said. ‘Ain’t no way an Asol Ramp deck works,’ I said. ‘Targon’s Peak is a pile of poro poop,’ I said, ‘always has, always will.’ And what did the BALCO’s answer say about the most likely probabilistic array?”

 

 

“That it was a poro-poopy 44.1% build…”

“Well, thanks so much for reminding me that I’m always right, Van der Grind. Now, what did you do to get Nokz—”

“You were right,” he said. Gone all traces of fear. Pupils narrowing with the laser focus of a madman.

“I… was?”

 

“I was here last night,” he said. “Trying to, uh… blow s-some steam off…” A rodent quality returned to his gaze as he looked at the wall in front of his desk, where a life-sized poster of that Fiora chick in Headmistress skin smiled wickedly at us. “She’s ss-ssooo strict, and I-I’ve been a n-naugh…”

I slammed at the table. “For the love of the Archetypes, der Grind! I do not wish to hear anything about how you spend your R&R time! Tell me what the hell happened, or I swea—”

 

“You were right,” he said, madman pupils again. He got to his feet and shuffled my way. “All of a sudden, it struck me. I knew it. I had to try it.”

My blood froze. I looked at the BALCO: I hadn’t noticed it was processing at full throttle—guzzling down precious bandwidth and cycles and Nokzau’s budget. And der Grind had been here all night…

 

I felt the floor spin under my stool. “You bloody madman. You reopened the Asol project.”

A feral grin spread across his rodent features.

“Are you insane?” I shouted. “Reopen a project without my approval? Without Nokzau giving us the thumbs up!? And what the hell for, anyway!? Numbers were atrocious!! We tested everything!”

 

“No we didn’t. We didn’t test Braum…”

“Of course we did, you imbecile! The third configuration we had the BALCO run…

 

 

“… was slightly better at 47%, but still pretty much a stinking pile of Elnuk manure, just—”

“… without Targon’s Peak.”

 

Holy crap.

Suddenly I remembered why I tolerate the existence of this rodent-faced nerd with the soiled pants in my lab.

 

“Holy crap, der Grind,” I said. “Holy crap.”

He grinned.

The BALCO dinged, spitting a solution.

And, Illya… I think rat-face may be right.

It sounds crazy. Trust me, I know. But this is what he found, with a theoretical performance of 56%:

 

 

BALCO’s optimals are all over the place, I’m afraid; if there’s a diamond in here, it is surely buried in a heap of Elnuk manure.

> Zoe is bad. Nothing new there.

> Braum is good.

> Wyrding Stones is MVP at 3x.

> Buried in Ice seems to work very well–2x is enough.

> A single Voices of the Old Ones has solid performance 

> Targon`s Peak is probably out, but there are (tiny!) hints that 1x may be a good idea.

> Starshaping seems another MVP, keep 3x.

> Infinite Mindsplitter may be worth it at 1x (it’s surprisingly good at that point)

> Avalanche may actually not be very good. I remember you telling me it’s a staple in all Freljord prototypes, but… telling you what the numbers say, that’s all.

> She Who Wanders is bad

> It That Stares is weird… looks like it’s either zero, or 3x. I suppose it depends on builds.

> Blue Sentinel and Guiding Touch both show promise at 3x.

 

And, Illya: we’re short on time. I need your help here: Nokzau won’t put up with this manure more than 24 hours. 48, tops.

I need a prototype.

I need results.

Before Nokzau comes back to shut us down. Or before I tear that slutty Fiora from the wall, roll the poster into a bat, and beat Van der Grind into a bloody pulp.

I’m counting on you. Don’t let me down!

Luna

 

***

 

From: Dr. Illya Pentaak – Director, Second Laboratory of Aeronautic Yokedevilry – MonteXerghans Aeronautics & Industrial Mining Corporation

To: Dr. Luna Tykwyrd – Director, Department of Weaponizable Advanced Research

 

Luna,

 

I have been eagerly awaiting a new assignment. I will begin the refinement process immediately!

 

This is the list I will be using as our prototype.  

 



 

After one game it shows promise, Starshaping won me the game but Guiding Touch could have done the same job. Too many dragons in the top end makes this list clunky and difficult to mulligan.  You never want to find two copies of Faces of the Old Ones, changes are in order!


Ver. 1.1 

 

The extra mana tax on Three Sisters is not worth the versatility, all copies better served as Flash Freeze to aid in survival.  The three HP breakpoint is one hurdle we have difficulty clearing, Ice Shard’s should remedy that! All that nonsense top-end had to go to make room for these changes.  Finally I have swapped Starshaping for Guiding Touch as your statistics indicate this is an avenue worth exploring. Sunburst is also a card I feel is important to include, despite the stats, without it we have no ways of: dealing with a leveled Sejuani, efficiently removing a Lee Sin or other large threat. 

 

Faces of the Old Ones has proven to be quite good into aggro as it allows you to play the curve of double pass into Avalanche and ramp. This should let you clean up most early game board states and start working your way back into the game. 

 

 

 

Aloof Travelers is mildly problematic for any Feel The Rush deck; however our deck can win without ever casting Feel The Rush so don’t go rushing to throw in the towel if you get your copy milled! 

 

In the game showcased above against The Bandle Tree I had all three copies of my Feel The Rush milled, two of them off the top! The opponent played their first copy of The Bandle Tree when it was already at 10/10. As you can see from the screenshot I was ready for that tactic, I kept my It That Stares in the mulligan to counter this exact possibility! The game ended up being one of the strangest I’ve played. I dropped down to 9 HP but got an ASol down, the board ended up trading down and I lost my ASol to a Ravenous Flock on a block.  I ended up finding The Scourge off the ASol, that combined with It That Stares forced out two copies of my opponent’s minimorph.  Turns went by with me primarily passing so I could answer a potential topdeck of The Bandle Tree. I leveled a Braum and healed back up to full hp while burst passing with spells like Catalyst of Aeons to try and bait him into playing his second landmark so I could destroy it with my second It That Stares. The Bandle Tree never came down but I managed to sneak in enough damage to get my opponent down to 3! He tried to trade off the last of my board with his final Minimorph which I prevented by casting Flash Freeze to save my Mini-Tee.  This let me swing with three 3/3 units into his two wide board and finish him off. This deck THRIVES in grindy matchups.

 

This variant is promising but we’re going to struggle into Lee Sin.  Their ability to Deny our Feel The Rush and bounce our threats is… troublesome. I will contemplate this problem but to find a solution I will need MORE DATA!

 

I humbly request further information on the following cards:

Kindly Tavernkeeper, Starshaping, It That Stares, Sunburst, Wyrding Stones, Guiding Touch

 

I await your response so I may continue my testing and further my analysis.

 

Humbly,

Dr. Pentaak

 

***

 

From: Dr. Tykwyrd – Director, Department of Weaponizable Advanced Research – MonteXerghans Aeronautics & Industrial Mining Corporation

To: Dr. Illya Pentaak – Director, Second Laboratory of Aeronautic Yokedevilry

 

Illya,

 

We’re running out of time.

 

I understand you’re the one risking life, limb and LPs in the testing field. And I know data don’t speak–maybe a good thing, else Nokzau would be talking to data directly and kicking our butts out of his precious budget.

 

I’m just telling you what the BALCO spits when fed with your empirical results.

 

> Kindly Tavernkeeper seems like a x3, but if you’re comfortably with 2x, I guess it’s your choice.

> Starshaping is definitely a x3, say the numbers. Zero seems wrong.

> It That Stares is still a strange bird: both the zero and x3 configurations look like the best spots. This is where you shine, Illya; I have no clue what these results mean on the field.

> Sunburst looks bad, actually — and 1x the worst option. 

> On the other hand, your choices for Voices of the Old Ones at 1x, Feel The Rush at 3x, Wyrding Stones at 3x, and above all Buried in Ice at 2x seem spot on.

> Infinite Mindsplitter looks interesting at 1x, but never more than that.

> Guiding Touch looks very good at 2x. So does Blue Sentinel at 3x.

 

Also: you mentioned having problems with the mass-produced Sejuani version. I have bad news there: the BALCO is clear that Sejuani overperfoms for its current popularity placement. Expect its appearance rate to increase.

 

Hurry up, Illya. Please. If you need me to say it, I’ll say it: I’ll owe you one.

 

Luna

 

***

 

From: Dr. Illya Pentaak – Director, Second Laboratory of Aeronautic Yokedevilry – MonteXerghans Aeronautics & Industrial Mining Corporation

To: Dr. Luna Tykwyrd – Director, Department of Weaponizable Advanced Research

 

Luna,

 

I am grateful to you for getting this to me so rapidly! My testing has been able to continue and the finding will astound you! THE DATA LIES! Sunburst has felt like a staple, without it I would be floundering in many matchups that should be free.  There is also a conflict between the data and my experiences surrounding Starshaping, to me it has felt… EXTRA… too much, too expensive, an overabundance of heal when played alongside Guiding Touch (I know… foolish to assume we could fit both…).  On the whole the list continues to develop and evolve, I am continuing to learn of new possibilities. Look at this example!

 

 

 

 

 

No, your opticals are not fooling you! This is indeed a turn 7 Aurelion Sol level up! Turn 6 Feel The Rush can you even imagine it! What deck in the game can possibly contest this UNTAPPED POWER!

 

Be wary, do not let this high-roll deceive you. The deck is not so easy all the time, there are many decisions to be made and you must be comfortable using the pass button (something I have struggled with, losing games that should have been secured!!) You must also be aware that Feel The Rush can be bait! You must have the breathing room to play it, if you do not you may find yourself simply dying when the turn passes to your opponent!. 

 

Behold!! The complete annihilation of scouts players

 

 

 

Beautiful isn’t it?

 

Alas, this was not a success. I grew overconfident in my victory and passed too hastily. My opponent was not quite as dim-witted as I believed and he accepted it. This denied me my catalyst and the mana gem I required to play my top decked Aurelion Sol… Beware of hubris my friend, it is a dangerous thing. Keep your wits about even when all appears won.

 

Poppy is yet another champion that may pose a problem for our space dragon.  Blighted Ravine is fantastic in these matchups as buffs expire before countdown goes off, this makes it very difficult for them to maintain a board.  Ramping is bait in these matchups, you’ll need your removal and early units to survive.  Keep frostbites like Flash Freeze handy to slow them down when possible.

Ver 1.3 – Final Test

 

 

Regions
Freljord
33 cards
Mount Targon
7 cards
Rarities
29 500
champion
6
epic
5
rare
13
common
16
Mana cost
0
0
0
1
3
2
9
3
9
4
5
5
3
6
11
7+
Champions
6
4
Braum
3
10
Aurelion Sol
3
Landmarks
3
4
Blighted Ravine
3
Followers
10
2
Faces of the Old Ones
3
3
Kindly Tavernkeeper
2
3
Wyrding Stones
3
8
It That Stares
2
Spells
21
3
Flash Freeze
2
3
Ice Shard
2
4
Avalanche
3
5
Catalyst of Aeons
2
5
Starshaping
3
6
Harsh Winds
2
6
Sunburst
1
8
Voices of the Old Ones
1
9
Buried in Ice
2
12
Feel The Rush
3

 

 

WE’VE DONE IT! Luna! We’ve found the solution… or close to it. Sunburst is a bit of a pet card of mine and could probably go if our pilots would prefer to play something else. 

 

With this build you have it all! Anti-aggro tools like Avalanche and Blighted Ravine to help your aggro matchups, with Starshaping to help stabilize in the end game. TEN ramp cards to let you annihilate your control opponents and good board wipes like Buried in Ice and It That Stares to deal with midrange players. 

 

All the previous tips are still relevant, keep your hp high, open pass often, ramp into Feel The Rush and win the game! The readdition of Starshaping helps out a lot when you draw awkward hands with lots of top end and no ramp or lots of ramp and no top end. It also helps you find spot-check answers for things like The Bandle Tree or big champ threats like Sejuani. I’ve come around to the inclusion.

 

Should our pilots wish to adjust the list, my recommendations are to cut the Sunburst and play the third copy of Catalyst of Aeons. If you anticipate a lot of mirrors, Infinite Mindsplitter is an excellent choice as it’s ability goes right through spellshields! STAY AWAY FROM Targon`s Peak! The card is bait and will only serve to drag you down. You can also play with adding or removing any number of copies of Ice Shard

 

My overall winrate across all versions of the list is 20-10 with the final version having gone 10-2.  I think it’s safe to say the analysis has been completed and the solution discovered.

 

Ilya signing off!