Hey guys! Today we’re going to talk about the new Fizz/Nami Bandle City deck that I have played exclusively to Master. This particular list is a home-brew of mine, notable differences from the other lists out there are Pocket Aces and Coral Creatures. I think the inclusion of these two cards puts my list a step above the rest by providing you with surprise value and extra spells for your engines. Without further ado let’s get into the list and break-down the card choices!
3x Fizz – Fizz is an integral piece to this deck, you could theoretically replace him with Teemo but Fizz’s ability to destroy a spell targeting him makes him a significantly better choice in my opinion. Fizz is very key to winning games against Darkness and other spell-based removal decks. He’s also quite good into Draven decks be it Cait, Ez or Sion.
3x Otterpus – This card is incredible, it gives you spell mana & something to use that mana on. Playing a unit on turn one and still banking is VERY good in this deck. We’ll talk a bit about optimal prank usage later in the video but for now all you need to know is that it’s usually bait to play the prank immediately.
3x Trinket Trade – Trinket Trade is theoretically infinite gas for this deck! I had one game against Aikado where I chained four or five Trinket Trade’s in a row! Being able to choose an Otterpus as a worst case scenario makes this card SO GOOD! One of the problems I have found with this deck is running out of gas before you can make your engines go brrrrrrr and Trinket Trade does a lot to help that issue.
2x Conchologist – You might be asking, “Monte, if Trinket Trade is worth 3x why not 3x Conchologist too?” And that’s a very good question. The short answer is bank mana = good, the longer answer is that Conchologist doesn’t have the same floor of Otterpus that Trinket Trade does and that you really want to skip turn two if you can so you can aim to level Nami on turn four
3x Coral Creatures – Ok now I’m trolling right? How can Coral Creatures be better than Conchologist? I value the attune a lot! Having the ability to bank mana & play a unit is really important in not folding to aggro. A randomly generated card can suck but the one mana pool in these regions is pretty good with no real “dead hits”. The worst card to get is Bloodbait but often all you need is a one mana burst spell (you can also do some funny stuff with the Snapjaw Swarm if they block it) You can swap one creature for a third Conchologist if you prefer that
3x Kelp Maidens – Pranks have a strange value curve where they’re really good in the early and late game but not as valuable in the mid-game. This makes it important to understand that the purpose of this card is an elusive that we can buff
3x Pokey Stick – This is one of the most broken cards in bandle city, ping & cycle is great. Sometimes you may even want to use this on your own 1hp unit to guarantee a buff hits a different, better, target.
3x Double Trouble – This is the inclusion that makes my list so different from all the others. IMO this is one of the best ways to utilize all the spell mana you banked on turns one and two. You can get some really great high rolls and very few low rolls. It lets you stabilize the board and gives you stuff to buff with Nami or Shelly if you don’t have anything else
3x Nami – Nami is incredibly broken in her current state. Don’t bother trying to play un-leveled Nami as it’s rarely worth it. If you are going to put her down before she levels, be sure you can level her on the following turn by banking mana or playing an attune unit.
2x Pocket Aces – the other notable inclusion that differs from most lists. I like Pocket Aces as emergency protection, for Nami or as an unexpected way to trade up smaller units. This is one of your flex slots. If you’d like, you can remove these altogether to play some of the other cards listed below.
3x Zap Sprayfin – elusive attune unit that draws a spell. Zap Sprayfin is a bit of a dated card at this point in time, if you wanted to experiment with some of the cards listed below you can start by cutting here.
2x Fleet Admiral Shelly – shelly go brrrrrr, Step one – Set up a wide board, Step two – Cast two spells, Step three - ???, Step four – Profit. Shelly is the deck’s second engine, he can carry you when you can’t find or lose your Nami and he makes your wimpy Double Trouble one-drops into monstrously large units that your opponent can’t ignore!
3x Hidden Pathways – Really cheap draw, turned on by almost every card in your deck including Double Trouble!
3x Wiggly Burblefish – Zero mana elusives that give you a spell?!?! Everything this deck wants and more.
1x Mind Meld - After a wonderful conversation with DenCCG (one of the only other people still playing this list at the highest level) I’ve come around on the inclusion of Mind Meld, this tech option can really help you out in the Nami/Zoe matchup by allowing you to cheat and catch back up with their board for a turn.
Group Shot – If you find yourself looking for more removal/pings. Group Shot fills this role nicely. As we often have wide boards this will mostly be two damage for one mana which is INCREDIBLE!
Shellshocker – good anti-aggro unit
Prowling Cutthroat – cheap elusive unit that always gets buffed by Nami
Yordle Squire – A decent card that gives you a spell. Personally I don’t feel like the spell is very useful and I would rather pass on one than miss banking spell mana for a 2/1
Make it Rain – Could help you into aggro
Marai Songstress – another good cheap elusive unit, this is the most aggressively stated elusive option in these regions, if you’re trying to go faster than your opponent this would be a good card to add.
Bandle Commando - Cheap elusive unit with a better body for buffing and fodder generation. A solid option, if you find yourself wanting more elusives this is the card I would add first.
Line 'Em Up - This is another good anti-aggro tool that is utilized well by the Targon version of this deck. Den, one of the only other high level players still on this list, is very keen on this card. I’ve been testing it in a more experimental list I will include below and it’s been quite good so far, if you’re having trouble with aggro or find you need more ways to dump your mana early this card is an excellent choice for your list.
Pick a Card – because of the way we’ve built this list you will often find yourself with a bunch of generated spells in hand and no way to convert them into board power, Pick a Card lets you cycle these generated spells to try and find your engines
Journeying Sandhopper – I was pretty high on this card at the start of the expansion but it’s less good than I initially believed, attune without card generation or draw is not very important to the deck. I wouldn’t play more than one but it’s not a terrible inclusion if you really want a fearsome blocker.
Stress Defense – I am not the biggest fan of this card but it does have it’s uses. It can stop a Sion lethal or protect Nami/Fizz. I haven’t found myself in many situations where I wished I had a stress testing in hand so I’m pretty happy excluding the card from my list but if you are having trouble with the Sion matchup, make a quick swap for the Pocket Aces and the matchup should be a bit more manageable
Shell Game – You could potentially include this as a one of, it would let you quickly level Nami in games where you weren’t able to bank spell mana early and push face with a non-elusive unit that you buffed up
Salvage – a decent draw option that I personally feel is a bit too overcosted to warrant running.
Basic Mulligan Guide:
In your mulligan you want to be looking for exactly two cards - Double Trouble and Nami. These two cards are the key to enabling your deck to perform at its best by enabling you to play down a leveled Nami as early as turn four!
Otterpus is always a keep because it’s a free chump blocker that lets you play your Nami a bit more safely through the use of Prank. If you already have your combo pieces you can keep Fizz, Trinket Trade and in slower matchups Hidden Pathways.
Against aggro you will want more early units like Coral Creatures and pings like Pokey Stick (if you already have early units) to help you keep up in board presence. Double Trouble is still very good in these matchups! If you have nothing else Conchologist can be an ok keep here as it’s VERY important you have early units to play. Always keep Fizz against aggro as he’s one of the best one drops in the game
Using Pranks Effectively:
One of the most important things to understand when playing this deck is when to use your pranks for maximum value. Generally you want to hoard your pranks until you have an engine in hand to use them with but this isn’t always the case. Something I will often do is, play a prank just before putting down a turn four Nami. Doing so will give you some information on their hand, let Nami’s attune level her, and potentially protect Nami from removal. Playing multiple pranks right before you go all in for a final swing is another great play! If you’re ready and looking to end the game with your existing board it just makes sense to disrupt the opponent’s hand with a mass pranking, their whole game plan will be in disarray and they will be forced to find other removal/options to keep themselves in the game.
Against aggro like Pirates or Poppy/Ziggs, you'll want to use your pranks as you generate them, ideally for minion debuffs. Aggro decks love to play out multiple low cost units in a turn; most of the time these units will be completely invalidated with a prank. What good is a zero attack Jagged Butcher? Using pranks early and for minion debuffs will let you take the game longer and give you a chance at having that pop off combo turn! This doesn’t mean pranks generated in the late-game are useless, you can buy yourself an extra turn by pranking that Decimate out of castable range.
Against control decks like Darkness or FTR you’ll want to be using your pranks in the mid-game before a big attack so you can push the cost of their removal spells up and out of castability for the current turn. Against Darkness specifically you can look to prank the darkness itself and make it more difficult for them to achieve their Veigar level up. One thing to know about pranks is that you cannot increase the cost of something beyond maximum mana, this means your pranks will never hit FTR, you can still use this to your advantage as you should always know when they have their “win now” card and can look to play faster or slower based on that information.
Matchup Specific Tips:
Bandle Tree - 55/45 Slightly Favoured
This matchup is a bit of a weird one, you have to balance caring about your hp with ensuring you have a board to buff. Treat your hp as a resource in this head to head and sacrifice some of it to set up a better board. They don’t have a good way of contesting Nami unless she’s damaged so keep her out of combat! Try to remove Bandle City Mayor’s as soon as you can!
Zoe Nami - 50/50 Mirror
The “mirror”, this matchup comes down to who can stick an engine and buff their board faster. Mindmeld is a great card for coming out ahead in this “mirror” and I would definitely consider keeping it in my mulligan. This matchup can be very difficult to maneuver and pranks aren’t very good here outside of bricking their Double Trouble, making it more difficult for them to bank spell mana efficiently and slowing down the Nami level. It’s important to be conscious of what spells you’ve used as they have access to Spell Thief and will be able to steal them.
Sion - 60/40 Favoured
The fastest way to lose this matchup is getting blown out by Fallen Rider and we unfortunately don’t run many ways of dealing with them in this iteration of the deck (if you’re facing a lot of Sion look through the Other Cards portion of the guide for some helpful swaps) so we’re relying on high-rolling with Double Trouble and stabilizing with an early Nami. If they don’t have Fallen Rider this matchup gets a lot easier as you can efficiently trade or chump block the rest of their early units which will allow you to target buff elusives once you have Nami down.
Poppy Pile(s) - 35/65 Unfavoured
This section covers every Poppy deck (except for Poppy/Ziggs which falls under Aggro). Poppy decks can be quite difficult for us, the rally versions go faster and they have Sharpsight to deal with our elusives. Depending on how they set the pace of the game you may have to slow down and delay your Nami level just to stay alive. While they will often be able to Sharpsight block a single elusive they will have a harder time covering a wider board, try to put yourself in a position that allows you to set up multiple elusives before an open attack.
Draven PNZ 60/40 Favoured
This is actually a pretty good matchup, historically Tri-beam decks have struggled with Fizz and this continues to be the case in the current meta. The Cait versions can be a bit trickier to maneuver because flash bombs have the potential to interrupt your setup; be sure to keep that in mind when deciding to play your one hp elusives. The plan remains the same here, level up and stick a Nami ASAP, making a big Fizz is your key to winning this head to head.
Bandle Pirates 50/50
Consider this an aggro deck when contemplating your mulligan. Look for early drops to ease pressure and slow down their Gangplank level up.This matchup can be won through a large Fizz or a wide elusive board. You can even come out ahead by buffing up your units off Double Trouble. Some lists run Monster Harpoon so keep that in mind when you’re deciding whether or not to play your Nami, if they have 3 mana and have activated plunder in the turn it’s not safe to put her down!
Darkness - 55/45 Slightly Favoured
This deck plays slowly which is great for us because it gives us time to set up. Using Nami effectively can be difficult as she is quite easy for darkness to remove once they’ve attacked with a Twisted Catalyzer and played a Veigar. Fizz is critical to success but feel free to trade your first one into their Twisted Catalyzer. The key to this matchup is getting Fizz and Nami on the board at the same time with enough spells in hand to buff Fizz up to a respectable size while Darkness is on the stack aimed at Nami. The one card you have to be cautious of is Mini-Morph as it ignores Fizz’s ability, keep a prank handy! Shakedown is an amazing card to pick up off of Trinket Trade or Conchologist in this matchup, it’ll let you kill your units out from under their Darkness and slow down the Veigar level up!
Ez/Vi Shellfolk - ?
While I haven’t faced this matchup too much on ladder I expect it to become more popular in the coming days as Alan did win worlds with the list in his line up. Fizz is once again an integral piece to winning this game, his innate ability allows you to ignore any spells they may fire at him. Stick a Fizz, play a leveled Nami and watch him grow so large your opponent forfeits! Hidden Pathways can be an ok keep in this matchup
Aggro (Pirates/Old School Burn/Fake Tree/Poppy Ziggs) 50/50 Even
You really just want early units to play in this matchup. Keep anything playable less than three cost and don’t be afraid to slow down your Nami level up progress if it means staying alive. Double Trouble on turn two is very good at helping you slow down the game and can buy some time. Pings like Pokey Stick can also be quite good but be wary of keeping them without any units in hand. Pranking units early is a good way to keep up on board and pranking burn spells in the late game can buy you extra turns. Be sure to make your health the number one priority when you’re playing against aggro, everything else is secondary to staying alive!
Feel the Rush 55/45 Slightly Favoured
This matchup is actually not so bad, especially if you draw into your Mind Meld! As they are a slower deck you should have no problem passing turns one and two. Double Trouble is a great way to draw out their Avalanche and let you set up your actual board. Once you’ve got a few elusives down, drop that Nami and buff away!
This section covers my current experimental build of Fizz/Nami. After a lengthy conversation with DenCCG I went ahead and rebuilt my list from the ground up to test some of the other cards I discussed in Card options. This is the list I’m currently trying out on the ladder. I’m not sure about the ratios or all of the current card choices but I thought I would share it for anyone who wanted to try out something slightly different. The upside to this version is more interaction with Line 'Em Up and cycling with Pick a Card. I love seeing this list perform and am constantly looking to improve it but I can only play so many games in a day, so help me make this the best list it can be and shoot me a DM on Discord (MonteXristo#1551) or Twitter to let me know what you think!