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.
Best LoR Decks for the Standard Ladder – Demacia is Coming!
These are the most popular Standard LoR archetypes according to the Mastering Runeterra Meta Tier List:
Sources: MaRu's data (which samples Plat+ players)
Overall LoR Ladder Trends – Standard
Miss Fortune and Quinn didn't manage to overtake Janna Nilah as the most played archetype, but Scouts will nevertheless end this patch cycle as the best deck in Runeterra…
… as long as Galio Garen Jarvan IV, which came out of nowhere this week, doesn't steal the wind from Scout's sails!
And, in the fringes of the LoR meta, a few off-the-wall brews that saw quite a bit of success in the World Qualifier Open last week are making their way onto the Standard ladder.
On related news, the next Variety Patch is expected to land next week:
For those that may not be too familiar with LoR's patch cycles, Variety patches brings three things:
- A handful of new cards (I haven't seen confirmation about how many we'll get, but thus far it's been roughly around a dozen),
- The Eternal ranked ladder becomes available (and the Standard remains available too),
- The Eternal Runeterra Open.
In addition, this particular Variety patch will bring something else: an additional Last Chance Qualifier Open, which will be the Open before LoR Worlds in December. And, as far as we've been told, this LCQ's format will be Standard, rather than Eternal – so, unlike past Variety patches, in which most pilots and brewers gravitated to Eternal, I'd expect a lot of competition (and brewing, and innovation) on the Standard ladder too this time around.
Juggernauts – Best Legends of Runeterra Decks for the Standard Ladder
Decks in this category have at least 2400 games played in the last three days, and good to great win rates – as far as current numbers go, these are the best LoR decks in the Standard ladder.
With Darius Gnar losing some steam, Janna Nilah snatches both the "Most Played Deck" and "Most Played Archetype" titles. Janna Nilah's best deck remains the same as last week, with just tiny differences in the spell ratios by sometimes cutting one Heavy Metal to add a copy of Tidal Invocation; both versions showcase a very solid 54%+ win rate.
Janna Nilah's worst nightmare, Caitlyn Teemo, is on the downswing, but the recent rise of two Galio decks (Galio Udyr, and above all Galio Garen Jarvan IV) is not ideal news: both are disastrous matchups for Janna Nilah. Scouts and Darius Gnar are also a bit problematic, but much closer to 50/50 odds.
As prey, Nilah Janna demolishes Ashe LeBlanc, Lurkers, and Shen Jarvan.
Further reading: Nilah Janna Deck Guide
Galio Garen Jarvan IV
Out of nowhere, and straight to the top!
Galio Garen Jarvan IV was very much not a thing on the Runeterra ladder last week, yet we'll end this patch cycle with Jarvan's Formidable crew making a very strong argument of them being the best LoR deck in Standard: nearly 3000 games in the last three days with a stellar 57% win rate.
Galio Garen Jarvan IV is amazing against Scouts, which is the other candidate as strongest deck this patch. Jarvan's crew also wrecks Nilah Janna, pounds Caitlyn Teemo into puffcap puree, and handily handles both Ashe LeBlanc and Darius Gnar. In other words, it creams Runeterra's cream of the crop.
This new Juggernaut's weak spots seem to be Lurkers, Shen Jarvan, and perhaps Heimerdinger Norra – but by all accounts, and as long as the standard meta doesn't change too much with the upcoming Variety Patch, GG Jarvan looks like one of the decks to beat during the last leg of Onward's journey.
Miss Fortune Quinn, aka Scouts
Miss Fortune Quinn still showcases one of the highest win rates from among all decks we'll see today (a fantastic 57%+ performance across 2400 games in the last three days) – were it not for Jarvan's formidable crew, Scouts would be hands down the best deck in Runeterra this patch cyle.
But Galio Garen Jarvan is indeed a huge thorn in Scouts' thigh: odds of around 30/70 make it close to unwinnable for Miss Fortune's merry bunch.
To make matters worst, Galio has rekindled its partnership with Udyr in what is another uphill struggle for Scouts.
Miss Fortune Quinn still has plenty of good targets, though, as show by its stellar win rate. Janna Nilah, Caitlyn Teemo, Lurkers and Ashe LeBlanc, along with a huge chunk of weaker brews, are all favorable for Scouts.
Heavyweights – Strong LoR Decks for the Standard Ladder
These decks have between 1200 and 2400 games in the last three days – solid heavy-hitters for your LoR laddering needs!
Last week's most-played deck loses quite a bit of popularity and a bit of punch, but remains a major factor in the current Standard meta: with 2300 games in the last three days and a 54% win rate, Darius Gnar is still a force to be reckoned with.
Like for the majority of strong decks, the rise of Galio Garen Jarvan is bad news. And Shen Jarvan, Ashe LeBlanc and Scout remain tough matchups for Darius Gnar.
Janna Nilah, Caitlyn Teemo and Lurkers, on the other hand, are easy prey, and the same is true for The Poro King; these overwhelming savages have no respect for fluffiness!
Further reading: Darius Gnar Deck Guide
Showing a surprising stream of resilience, Caitlyn Teemo has kept its play and win rate, even in a scenario where decks that perform better have suffered a sharp decline in popularity.
But Bandle Scout and Pilotover Sheriff soldier on! Their performance is nothing spectacular (just an okay 52% win rate) but they have maintained their 1300 games played in the last three days, making them one of the most played decks this week.
They remain a superb choice against Janna Nilah, but are underdogs to pretty much every other strong deck out there.
Further reading: Teemo Caitlyn Deck Guide
The Poro King Yuumi
His Highness refuses to go fluffily into the night, and once again shows the wisdom of partnering with Yuumi!
With most pilots transitioning from the Freljord to the Targon version, it's clear that the best Poro King deck is The Poro King Yuumi (rather than His Majesty going solo, as it was usually the case until a few weeks ago):
The matchup spread is not really amazing (including rough spots against Scouts, Jarvan's formidable crew, and Darius Gnar) but The Poro King Yuumi punches at 54% overall, making it a good pick to end this patch cycle with.
Pyke Rek'Sai, aka Lurkers
The tide takes away…
… and the tide gives: last week Pyke's crew was quite crestfallen, having for the first time in months shown a win rate below 53% – but lo and behold, they are among the very few decks that can put a stop to Galio's rampage, be it Galio Udyr or the new Galio Garen Jarvan powerhouse.
Lurkers are still underdogs to Janna Nilah and Scouts, which is not a great place to be in the current LoR meta, but all in all they have improved their win rate to nearly 55%. It looks like Pyke Rek'Sai will end another patch cycle among the strongest decks in Runeterra!
Further reading: Pyke Rek'Sai Deck Guide
Ashe LeBlanc keeps dropping in play rate (to about 1200 games this week, down from nearly 2500 games last week), although it's not clear why since it keeps punching above 54%.
The Janna Nilah matchup is close to unwinnable, so perhaps the frustration in that confrontation is one of the reasons – but, all in all, Ashe LeBlanc has a solid matchup spread and good performance, and it's only very slightly disadvantaged against Galio Garen Jarvan.
Struggling: Seraphine Sett, Diana Norra, Bard Norra, Kayle Yuumi
Kayle Yuumi remains popular, but a bit of a subpar choice – not horrible, but it struggles to reach the 50% win rate mark.
Seraphine Sett sees a similar pattern in the LoR ladder (Tournaments are a different kettle of fish in this case): playable, but barely at around 50%.
Norra does have a good deck when pairing with Heimer, as we'll see further down in this article – but, folks, Bard Norra and Diana Norra are just plain awful.
Punching Up – Standard LoR Decks Doing Great
Standard LoR decks with between 800 and 1200 in the last three days – we're sailing into small data samples here, so pilots beware!
Yeah, well… I give up here.
For unfathomable reasons, folks still sleep on Teemo Yuumi.
Even if it has a win rate close to 57%.
And has been performing amazingly well for weeks.
And in spite of Leer explaining all its tricks in his Teemo Yuumi Deck Guide.
But, well, it is what it is: some bad decks have die-hard fans, and some great decks just get ignored sometimes!
Shen Jarvan IV
Shen Jarvan IV is another great deck that keeps flying a bit under the radar, but it seems to have caught some attention as of late.
And for good reason: it's one of the very few decks that beat (and by a large margin at that) Galio Garen Jarvan, while also being one of the few excellent tools against Scouts. And it has great odds against Lurkers, Ashe LeBlanc, and Darius Gnar.
Shen Jarvan's predators are Janna Nilah and The Poro King, but although they are disfavored matchups they fall in the can-win range.
Galio is on a rampage this week, and besides his Juggernaut of a partnership with Garen and Jarvan, the stone statue has rejoined with Udyr and they are on a tear: Galio Udyr is on a roll with an amazing win rate across 800+ games in the last three days, and seems very well positioned against the current field.
In particular, Janna Nilah and Scouts are soft targets, and Galio Garen Jarvan is close to 50/50. Galio Udyr's only bad matchup thus far seems to be Shen Jarvan.
One of the best decks during the first week of the patch, Teemo Janna has been pushed almost to fringe-deck status as Nilah Janna regained its status as most popular Janna deck.
The best Teemo Janna deck still performs extremely well, though – we'll see what the future tides bring, but if you want a deck that is very strong and not too popular, Teemo Janna is an interesting consideration.
Further reading: Teemo Janna Deck Guide
Your Mileage May Vary
If none of the above floats your boat, here are a handful of more fringe options that are doing well on the Standard LoR ladder – sample sizes are small, though, so tread carefully!
Aatrox Evelynn is one of the off-meta decks that Sorry found sifting through the Top 64 of the recent Runeterra Open, and pilots have also noticed: it's putting up a great 56%+ win rate in the fringes of the LoR meta and can readily beat Janna Nilah.
Doesn't look ideal against Scouts, Darius Gnar, or Jarvan's formidable crew, though.
Galio Volibear has again been pushed to the fringes – Galio, as we've seen, has no lack of friends in high places, but Volibear doesn't seem to be one of them.
Further reading: Galio Volibear Deck Guide
Kayle Teemo is another finding from among the top contenders during the last Runeterra Open, and is showing quite some promise on the LoR ladder.
As noted above, Norra has a lot of bad decks nowadays… but she does have a good one: Heimerdinger Norra, which is in fact a fairly old pairing and concept.
Nothing amazing right now, but it has been putting up good results for more than a week now. It seems awful against Janna Nilah, but quite good against the Formidable crew.
Viego Evelynn was once one of the strongest decks in the Runeterra meta; it hasn't surfaced in quite a few months, yet it has been trying its luck this week and it's rolling quite fine.
Jinx Kennen remains a very fringe option, but it's packing one hell of a punch – definitely a deck to keep an eye on, if you want an off-meta brew that may be the next cool thing.