Howdy, and welcome to our weekly selection of the best decks in the Legends of Runeterra meta!
As explained in the Technical Note at the end of this article, we'll first take a glance at a snapshot of our LoR Meta Decks Tier List, which sorts archetypes (that's to say, the aggregate of all decks with the exact same Champions) by popularity, and then we'll dive into the data to check how individual decks perform, to showcase the best LoR decks.
During this patch, both LoR formants (namely Eternal and Standard) have their ranked ladders active. Given that Eternal is the focus of the Runeterra Open and has a lot more games played, we'll check that format in the first half of this article, and take a look at Standard in the second half.
Best LoR Decks for the Eternal Ladder
As we kick off the Eternal ranked ladder, here are the 6 most popular Eternal LoR decks according to Mastering Runeterra Meta Tier List:
Sources: MaRu's data
Overall LoR Ladder Trends – Eternal
With the Eternal ranked ladder being active for less than 40 hours (after being inactive for all of the Heart of the Huntress season), it's really too early to tell how the meta will shape up.
It's interesting to notice, though, that there's one archetype that looks solid in both formats: Galio Udyr, with mostly the same shell, seems competitive in Eternal and Standard.
Eternal Juggernauts – Best Legends of Runeterra Decks for the Eternal Ladder
Here we showcase Runeterra meta decks with more than 2100 games since patch 4.8 landed – there's a single deck in this category today, which is saying something: it's often the case that no single decklist accrues these many games so soon after a new patch!
Since yesterday, Samira Zoe leapfrogged over every other Eternal deck to become, by a wide margin, the most popular decklist in the format.
Like Aphelios Zoe, Samira Zoe is a mostly-Targon deck, with just a splash from other region – the splash, in this case, being the Desert Rose.
Thus far, it would appear that Samira Zoe beats Aphelios Zoe, Galio Udyr and Annie Jhin should they face each other, while having a bit of a rough time against Akshan Lee Sin and Vladimir Braum, and a really bad time against Jax Vi
Eternal Heavyweights – Strong LoR Decks for the Eternal Ladder
These decks have between 1000 and 2100 games since patch 4.8 landed – still too early to tell, but these look like solid choices for the Eternal LoR ladder.
Pushing its win rate above 52% today (when it was just around 50% yesterday) across 1700 games, Galio Udyr is bent on proving it's the real deal, and not a first-day fluke.
And, interestingly, it's also the only deck that can claim to be good in both formats: with a very similar shell, Galio Udyr is also putting good numbers in the Standard meta.
In Eternal, Galio Udyr handily beats Vladimir Braum – but has an uphill struggle against Samira Zoe, and seems to get wrecked by Aphelios Zoe and Jax Vi.
Atrocious Aphelios Zoe
Losing the mantle of "Most Popular Targon Deck" to the Samira variant, Aphelios Zoe is still very much on the fight – its win rate has cooled off a bit (dropping from 56% yesterday to 54 today) but has accrued 1700 games in total, cementing its status of main contender in the Eternal meta.
Jax Vi Timelines
Yesterday, Jax Vi looked scary.
Today, it just looks bonkers: a huge increase in popularity, and still hitting well above 60%. Its performance is so ahead of the curve that it's easy to imagine it becoming the most popular Eternal deck soon – above all because it currently shows a fairly big edge against Galio Udyr, Samira Zoe, Akshan Lee Sin, and Braum Vladimir, while roughly even against Aphelios Zoe.
Jax Vi may be weak to very aggressive decks, like Pirates, but there's very little data right now to say for sure.
Akshan Lee Sin
Blind monk and smirking rogue are kicking softer than yesterday, but still at a very solid 52%, and they have a slight edge Zoe Targon decks.
Like yesterday, there are lots of different lists, suggesting pilots have not agreed yet on the best current build.
Punching Up – Eternal LoR Decks Doing Great
Runeterra decks with between 500 and 1000 games since the patch landed – we're sailing into small data samples, yet all decks here have quite a few games under their belts.
The most fun deck in LoR's history keeps accruing games and taking names: 700+ games since the patch landed, without a dent to its amazing 60% winrate.
Going for a very low-to-the-ground approach (Crowd Favorite is notably absent, and there's a single Augmented Experimenter) while adding a couple of the latest Discard toys (like Blowback), early data suggests Draven Jinx may be Akshan Lee Sin's bane.
Atrocious Diana Zoe
With how strong other Zoe Targon decks have turned out in Eternal, it's no surprise to find another variant – nearly a card-for-card copy-paste from Aphelios Zoe, Diana Zoe punches at a silly 59% in about 700 games.
The Scargrounds holds its ground, and even improves its winrate from 53% to almost 55%, with a modest increase in the amount of games played – Braum Vladimir appears to be a serious underdog to Galio Udyr, Akshan Lee Sin and Jax Vi, though, which is certainly not ideal in the current Eternal meta.
Perhaps revealing a predilection for annoying partners, Akshan's other profitable partner besides Lee Sin is today Fizz, along with the return of Papercraft Dragon.
Akshan Fizz was flying completely under the radar yesterday (just about 80 games played) but shows up today with close to 600, and a crazy win rate (well above 60%) that amply justifies the spike in popularity.
The previous patch cycle brought the inconceivable to the Standard LoR ladder: Annie Jhin being a thing no more.
Fans of the blazing brat and the bullet buff need not worry, though: they are well and good (or very good, even) in Eternal.
Your Mileage May Vary
If none of the above floats your boat, here are a handful of fringe options that are doing well – sample sizes are small, though, so tread carefully!
Don't send a control deck to do an aggro deck's job – an' there ain't bein' no aggro job like killin' an' maimin' everythin' when the meta be fresh an' new!
Champless Beguiling Valley
An interesting oddity: a deck built around Valley of Imitation's and Beguiling Cobra's focus on Followers, and packing zero Champs.
Odd it may be, but it's working fairly well!
Draven Samira, ft. Sion
Draven Jinx is running hot, and so is the Eternal version of the other Discard Noxus archetype: Draven Sion, now inviting Samira and her Pirouette's to join the fun.
Strong Gwen Kalista
An interesting experiment, taking the Hallowed package and the Shadow Isles Champs to Demacia for a fairly heavy top-end: Captain Arrika, Genevieve Elmheart and Champions' Strength.
Thus far the Eternal format has been as unkind as Standard for the Heart of the Huntress Champions – but Galio seems eager to extended Nidalee a benevolent hand, and their partnership is looking quite successful: this is a very fringe brew, but there are several different versions being tested, and they all seem promising.
Best LoR Decks for the Standard Ladder
Overall LoR Ladder Trends - Standard
While we see several of the same familiar faces as last week, it seems clear that the buffs to Standard decks have taken their toll: Heimer Jayce and Lurkers, which were left untouched, are bubbling to the top, while Nasus Veigar, even if still very playable, is on the downswing.
And, as noted in the Eternal section, there's one deck that seems strong in both formats: Galio Udyr.
One of the two big winners of LoR Patch 4.8 in Standard, Heimer Jayce continues yesterday's trend: the most popular deck in the format, and one of the punchiest, smacking above 57%.
Heimer Jayce seems to have enlarged its edge against Illaoi Swain (which, overall, is suffering a great deal, probably due to Swain's nerf), and Nasus Veigar is now clearly favored…
… but we'll see if Professor and Student can hold the line: the other big winner of Patch 4.8 is Lurkers, which has an edge on Heimer Jayce, and Fizz Samira, in spite of all of its nerfs, is also a lousy matchup.
Yesterday, Vaults of Helia was hitting as hard as pre-patch – it seems to be losing steam now: still a very solid performance (54% win rate across 700 games since the patch landed), but quite a drop from yesterday's 57%.
Nasus Veigar looks like the underdog against Heimer Jayce, Lurker, and Samira Fizz – not a great place to be, at least by current numbers.
Pyke Rek'Sai, aka Lurkers
Overtaking Fizz Samira as the third most-played decklist in Standard, Lurkers may be the winners of Patch 4.8: they were already well-positioned last week, and now are tearing things apart on the LoR Standard ladder.
They even have an edge against Heimer Jayce and Nasus Veigar, while being even against Samira Fizz – it's still too early to tell, but by its huge spike in win rate (well over a crazy 60%) and solid matchup spread, it's not too crazy to think Pyke Rek'Sai may end up being one of the best decks in Legends of Runeterra.
Behind a façade of familiar faces, Fizz Samira has two very different versions competing to see which one is the scariest. The one shown below, with Fleet Admiral Shelly as top-end, is the most popular, and working quite well (win rate grazing 54%) – but the low-to-the-ground version, while still less popular, is hitting even harder.
Aatrox Quinn Vayne
Still packing three copies of the nerfed Fish Fight, Aatrox Quinn Vayne joins the frontrunners of the Standard LoR meta – as with other decks showcased today the sample size is small (just about 300 games since the patch landed, in this case), but an eye-widening 56% win rate suggests the World Ender may find the current meta to its liking.
Standard Galio Udyr
Now, this one is a surprise!
Technically speaking, we saw this Champion pair in yesterday's data…
… but that was for Eternal, in which they are still among the most popular options.
Now, with a shell that it's pretty much the same, including the shiny new Balen the Benevolent, Galio Udyr puts a fight in Standard, too, being the first, and thus far only, LoR deck working well in both formats.
In what's a mostly Shurima deck with just five Noxian cards, Akshan Samira is putting up nice numbers, and is thus far the only successful Standard deck for the recently-buffed smirking rogue.