Saturday's GGtoor x Mastering Runeterra tournament saw a lot of great developments in the meta and new lynchpins in the meta as a whole. There were numerous great moments on stream as well including a nail-biting finals with Sorry playing without power, on a phone with 2% battery, after 3 am!!! In addition to the normal breakdown of the top 8, we also have some new graphics for our report thanks to lor.dne.to!
If you're looking for the decklists of any other player, for the full complete bracket, or the vod of the tournament coverage, look below for the links.
Full Bracket: https://www.start.gg/tournament/500-ggtoor-x-masteringruneterra-cup-7/details
Full Decklist Sheet: https://docs.google.com/spreadsheets/d/1czfIPaerD6tcixBlPdiKgQDCgHubEMzEWi6mm_lvTiM/edit?usp=sharing
Full Coverage Vod: https://youtu.be/wjFjB1XKLFU
Open Rounds Breakdown
Looking at the breakdown of top Archetypes, Regions, and Champions we can see there are some clear players, with almost HALF the field bringing Viego, and Noxus Viego on top of that. Aside from our new sad king, we see Aphelios is up there for champion playrate, with Taliyah just behind as Thralls and Deserter Viego are tied for 29 decks a piece.
After that it's a fairly expectable spread of control with Heimer Jayce having a good showing, then Afaelios and Pantheon showing up as gods of the old meta.
Regions played makes sense with what we see above, what with Noxus being a huge winner in the patch and current meta with it's shiny new tools, and Ionia, Bandle City, and Freljord not getting much exciting stuff aside from Thralls. Runeterra champions have seen some play but not an immense amount, which is fair since we only have TWO of them so far.
Top 8 Breakdown
The top 8 breakdown is similar for Champions with Viego on top, and Taliyah making a good showing, but it tells a different story aside from that, with Pantheon Yuumi showing up MUCH more than we saw in the open rounds, with the rest following suit overall.
The region breakdown of the top 8 tells a similar story, with Shadow Isles being on top, while Noxus is a bit further down. The top 5 regions are a mix of the same, except for Targon taking the place of Demacia. It's interesting to see these figures broken down visually and while it is a sample size of one tournament, I'm glad we have it as an option.
With all that said and broken down, let's get to the part most people clicked on this for; the top 8.
5-8th Place - Lunahri
Jayce Heimerdinger (SI)
This deck hasn't seen too many changes since the patch and it makes sense, a big part of the deck is that it has a solid core in it's 6 cost removal spells, it's units, and early spells. The main addition here is one of Sputtering Songspinner, which makes a grand total of 4 turrets if you sneak it in with a Heimer on board. They won't be massive since three of them are the 0/1 challengers, but that does make for a turn where you can chunk in for some good damage even if you haven't landed many Handlers.
This list isn't a far cry from what we're used to from last season but does have some innovations all the same. Pantheon Yuumi is based around building up one or two units with buffs that are permanent thanks to the Fated keyword, it does this while progressing towards Pantheon's level, looking to roll the dice and hit Scout, Elusive, Spellshield on him if possible then win immediately. This list shows off most techs that we've seen from the archetype, with one Blinded Mystic, one Bastion, back up to one Golden Aegis, and two Petricite Broadwings to cover it's normally middling early game and make it more resilient to swarm.
Draven Sion Vi
An interesting spin on an old favorite. Looks like they're making use of Vi as a midgame powerhouse in conjunction with Draven Sion's aggressive tendancy to play a few cheap cards per turn to pump Vi to unreasonable levels and shore up the midgame as a 'must-answer' threat. Aside from her inclusion, the deck also has a couple Fervors for additional burn, looking to get the early chunks in and have a reliable burn package to make it so that 11 hp isn't a safe number.
5-8th Place - Friend of Zoe
Aphelios Zoe Vi
AZV is an interesting aggressively slanted deck I've not seen too much of since the patch but it embraces some of the new tools we were given. It has a full three of "the WINNING light" as it is called, and a Celestial Trifecta for longer grindier games, while sporting the normal tools of the champions that allow for a variable gameplan based on what you need to do in the match.
Thresh Aurelion Sol
This hard control deck looks to have at least one tool to handle everything, with numerous pings, drains, hard removal, aoe removal, and additional healing to stop almost any angle the enemy could come from. It makes use of Undergrowth but not much else for new tools.
Jayce Heimerdinger (SI)
This version of the deck is less focused on the tech aspect of things and looks more to control things overall. It makes use of Station Archivist to generate more answers, Iterative Improvement to make what is needed at the time, Thermogenics to answer things more flexibly, and more low to the ground removal that drains while killing.
5-8th Place - SonikHolik
This list is fairly unchanged from the patch, mostly focusing on early game units and tempo up to the point where they drop a Viego or Hydravine then they keep it alive and let it slowly grow.
A few innovations have been seen in 'Afaelios' by the looks of it, including two Byrds as a good early drop that buffs the hand, hopefully hitting an attach unit to generate later value. They also have a Winding Light alongside a few of the older flex picks, a Wallop, a Flamespitter, a Group shot, keeping it diverse. It feels like they were looking to test how cards worked out and keep the enemy on their toes overall.
Lissandra Taliyah Thralls
The scourge of the new meta, Thralls is back in a powerful way. They have two major new tools in the Harbinger of Thralls to help generate Frozen Thralls or tick things down when need be, and Sands of Time to weaken big aggressive swings, and generate an Instant Century to tear down the countdown on Thralls for huge tempo swings. The deck has made a huge splash in the meta and been known as a menace, even lowering their amount of removal in favor of turboing thralls even harder.
5-8th Place - Rogio
This deck has not been seen too much in the sunset of last patch, but it seems to be back to some degree at least. It's fairly stock aside from the inclusion of two Field Musicians to keep the value coming, and Storm of Blades to amp up every blade dance you do.
The bogeyman of the patch rears it's head, it has the majority of what you'd expect, with only one Sentry, and three Rearguards to lean into the aggro side of things.
Viego Elise Katarina
A newcomer that has been hitting the ladder and apparently tournaments in force. Noxus Viego is a deck with 9 'Need to answer' threats that can easily end the game and grow out of control thanks to the way Legion Deserter works with Encroaching Mist buffs, which double up on him since the mists buff other mists AND Viegos. The deck focuses on holding back aggressive strategies and trying to chip in for a bit of damage early alongside controlling with Disintegrates and Flocks, having the two Elise and one Katarina as early game tempo tools.
3/4th Place - Talpinator
( https://twitter.com/Talpinator97 )
Reputation is a deck I have heard about but not seen before today. It makes use of the lopsided statline of Noxus and Shurima units to turn on Reputation cards like Whispered words, For Glory! and Incisive Tacticians. It generates a lot of value with the new card The Gray Apothecary as well which pumps out endless 5+ power units, and all culminates in a leveled Sivir and or Leblanc forcing in for a lot of power and value.
Miss Fortune Quinn
This list opts for a spread on 6ithrias and Genevieves and a couple of Blinding assaults to flesh out the challenger package while making use of your spell mana a bit better.
Ezreal Viktor Vi (Bandle City)
We may have found the true competitive Shellfolk deck, and it only runs Glorious Evolution through nature of Ferros Financier. It is a list looking to get value off everything with common 2 for 1s in Conchologist, Ferros Financier, Station Archivist, Aloof Travelers, and in it's champions, as Viktor and Vi often get two cards in quick succession to answer them. Aside from that, it has a wide spread of burn and interaction spells including two Minimorphs at the top of the curve, alongside the typical Shellfolk package of Otterpuses, (Otterpi?) Trinket Trades, and the aforementioned card generating units.
3/4th Place - Sudrakon
( https://twitter.com/Sudrakon_ )
Trundle Tryndamere Feel the Rush
A deck that has fallen off a little bit but still can win through sheer force of "She who Wins" some games. With it's wide spread of AOE removal and a lot of targeted answers alongside life gain and ways to accelerate your mana, it aims to finish things off with a Feel the Rush into two nearly unkillable 10/10 champions.
Taliyah Lissandra Thralls
A rather standard new-world thralls list.
This deck manages to be a blast from the past while still having numerous new cards in it. It harkens back to the Freljord Allegiance decks of old, aiming to buff the deck beyond recognition, then make use of cheap overwhelm units that are now 10/10s for no good reason. It has the Udyr package of Stance Swaps to give overwhelm where needed, Revna the Lorekeeper to turn one or two well placed chimes into a sudden 2 chimes for the entire deck, and some Battle Furys for good measure.
2nd Place - Camilari, of team One Turn Kill Club
( https://twitter.com/Camilari13 ) ( https://twitter.com/OneTurnKillClub )
Viego Elise Katarina
This is mostly the list we saw earlier, with -1 Haunted Tomb and +2 Unspeakable Horrors as the noteworthy changes. It also focuses less on creature draw instead opting for Whispered Words over Leeches.
A less interactive Pantheon Yuumi shell, focused more on it's general gameplan than plugging holes of weaknesses to early swarm.
An innovation on a new deck that is interesting to see. Bard Zed has been in the meta for a bit now, with someone reaching Rank 1 on EMEA with it , and this list innovates on it, with two The Makers, a Kinkou Lifeblade and more interaction such as Nopeify, Palms, and Deny. It makes a bit better of a go at delaying the enemy to reach the point where you draw 2+ chimes per turn.
1st Place - Sorry
( https://twitter.com/TricksterSorry )
Sorry admitted in their winners' interview to using all decks from last season due to a lack of cards on their NA account, so seeing a slightly teched version of Pantheon Yuumi with Broadwings and a Hush makes sense here.
As mentioned before, these are all decks he confessed are from last season, so seeing a stock Sand-iego list here makes sense, potent and effective.
The same landmark based list we've come to know, love, and hate. This version opts for two Arsenals as game enders, and two Unleashed Energys which were used to GREAT effect alongside the three Hexplosive minefields in the finals.