If you're looking to target control this is the lineup for you!
This week’s control buster lineup features some troublesome rally decks and Zilean Xerath. Sivir Akshan and Pantheon Taric both pose major problems for the control decks as they have the ability to force out answers, like Vengeance, and then play out more threats > Rally to close out the game.
Sivir Akshan also has the power to give its whole board spell shield with a leveled Sivir. This is nearly impossible for control decks to beat, be sure to play around her as much as possible in these matchups.
Your ban priority is Ahri Kennen. You cannot hope to beat it with this lineup, so you ALWAYS have to ban it! Your next ban priority should be aggro, Pantheon Taric is soft into any aggro deck running fearsome units, like Spiders or even Nightfall, and Draven Rumble is built to beat this style of midrange decks so take that out if there’s nothing more pressing.
You can always swap out Taric Pantheon for Shyvana Panth. Scouts is also a decent option but it does open you up to people on target Scouts lineups.
Lay the Hurt On'Em!
If you're hoping to roll over your opponents with an aggressive lineup look no further!
Fizz Lulu Yordles in Arms
This lineup is great into Pantheon decks, it can also leave up Ahri Kennen if it has to. I played this lineup myself in the Runeterra Academy playoffs just this last Thursday. If you expect Shyvana Pantheon to be the most popular Pantheon deck, you should scrim the matchups a bit as it is more difficult to take a game off of than Taric variants.
The ban strategy with this deck is very straightforward. Ban the deck with the most healing, if no decks have healing then ban the one with the most removal, if none have removal then ban the deck with the most early game units.
Pirates is a good alternative to any one of these decks, if you’re looking for better Ahri Kennen matchups you should swap out Draven Rumble. Nightfall and Ekko Zilean can also fit these slots if you’re experienced with the deck(s)
Mantheon Attack Mode!
Rally is the name of the game with this lineup. All three decks feature at least one copy of a Rally spell, this should give you a leg up in Pantheon mirrors while still performing against control.
Ahri Kennen (Demacia!!)
A ‘triple rally’ lineup that also happens to feature the best deck in the game (Ahri Kennen). This lineup forces other Pantheon lineups into banning Ahri Kennen while also running its own Pantheon deck and the third deck is another bigger Demacia deck. I would personally recommend you go with Pantheon Shyvana in this lineup as you’re hoping to beat the other Pantheon decks by being bigger; dragons do this better than Taric. I also quite like Jayce Lux in this last spot as it should allow you to beat up on the other Pantheon lineups a bit more effectively than Sivir Akshan but both options are quite good.
Ban strategy for this lineup is still to prioritize taking out Ahri Kennen and then you want to remove those pesky aggro decks. One benefit to this lineup is that Jayce Lux does pretty well into aggro so you’ll have a fighting chance if they ever leave it up. Another benefit to bringing a deck like Jayce Lux is that your opponents likely haven’t seen it and will either misplay against it or ban it out of fear, this is great because it will let us run them over with Ahri Kennen and Pantheon!
Alternate deck options for this lineup are other Pantheon variants, Sivir Akshan, other Ahri variants, and, in my opinion, even Draven Rumble can fit (but you’ll wanna be playing a few Ruined Reckoners for the pseudo rally)
Give Me The Best Deck & Ban It Too
Ahri Kennen (Shurima)
This lineup lets you play the best deck in the game while also banning it. For this reason, we prefer to go with the Ahri Kennen Shurima version, as we plan to ban the mirror so the Shurima version ends up being better into the decks you want to target (control, Pantheons, etc). The other two decks to round out this lineup are Poros and Zilean Xerath. Poros have a great match-up vs slow decks, as you can go wide and big with elusives. Zilean Xerath also has a good match-up vs control and Pantheon, due to their stuns, Minimorph, and ability to go wide with beefy units.
Your ban priority with this lineup will be Ahri Kennen first, Spiders second, Scouts third. Decks that you never want to ban include Darkness, FTR, and Pantheon decks.
An alternate deck that you can play with this lineup is Taric Pantheon. Your match-up vs other Pantheon decks gets a bit worse since you have to rely on the mirror match, but still allows you to do well into control and improves your match-up vs Scouts if you’re not able to fully ban it.
Beat Ahri Kennen & Control
With this lineup, your goal is to leave the Ahri Kennen and Control decks open and win vs them. For this, the first choice is very easy, Scouts. Scouts have a great match-up vs AK and any control deck except for Kindred Sentinels. Play the deck very aggro vs Ahri Kennen so they cannot stabilize.
The second deck in the lineup is Azir Irelia. Surprisingly this deck also does very well vs Ahri Kennen because the Ahri Kennen deck does not have a lot of high health blockers and they don’t want to sacrifice their units to block your soldiers. Eventually, they’ll have no choice if you keep putting pressure on them. Ideally, you’ll need the landmark of Azir to be able to put enough pressure on them. I don’t think I need to go over the match-up vs control, just put as much pressure on as possible especially by attacking on their attack turn and you can pull off the win.
Lastly, we finish up the lineup with Thralls. This Thralls list is specifically teched to do even better vs Ahri Kennen by bringing two Rite of Negation which can be used to stop their Homecoming. You have enough AoE and freezes to stall the game long enough for your thralls to finish them off.
Ban priority will be Pantheon decks, other midrange Demacia decks, and Scouts. Pretty much anything with a rally or big beefy units is troublesome vs you. It’s tough to find a deck that could be an alternate in this lineup as not many decks beat both Ahri Kennen and control. Poppy Lulu might be an acceptable option as the rallies put a lot of pressure on opponents.
Sirturmund’s Wildcard - Triple Nox?!?!!
Swain Twisted Fate
With the return of triple Demacia lineups and just the overall prevalence of Demacia, I am thinking of trying a wild card lineup where you bring triple Noxus and rely on Flocks, Scorched Earths and Sentry to slow them down enough and stall for your win cons. All three decks also run enough units and pings to enable these cards and slowly grind the opponent down.
For Ezreal Caitlyn, the deck is like the previous Noxus P&Z midrange of old. You have decent units to put pressure with and can try a big Tri-Beam to switch temp. For Swain TF, your win con is Swain plus Levi but you can also sneakily go wide due to your low-cost units to present lethal that. For Kindred Elise, you have the sentinels with their fearsome to apply pressure, Kindred to try to control the board and potentially finish with Atrocity and Ledros.
You are trying to target Demacia decks with this, whether Scouts, Pantheon or Sivir. This also does well vs most aggro decks as you have enough blockers and lost cost removal for them. The problem matchups are control decks, like FTR and Anivia which can just stall stall stall and beat you at the end. Ahri Kennen is also a toss-up, probably more unfavorable than not but if you see control + Ahri Kennen, prioritize control ban first.
An alternate Noxus deck to try is Noxus + Freijlord. Maybe you change the Swain TF deck and do Swain Trundle or Swain Sejuani, or just simply Trundle Sejuani if you still want to play Swain with TF.
About the authors
Sirturmund is a long-time player of the game, having played LoR since beta. He has found competitive success in the past year with a couple of seasonal top cuts finishes, rank 1 ladder placements, and first spot in a Qualifier of Mastering Runeterra's Championship. Best known for being one of the very few to still bring Star Springs to tournaments, you can find Sirturmund lurking around all the social media sites absorbing anything he can about the game!
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 LPP Riot Grand Prix. When he’s not writing for Mastering Runeterra he keeps his card-slinging skills sharp by playing in the Runeterra Academy tournament, with his team The Wobbly Wombats!