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Monday Meta Report – March 14th

Leer takes a deep dive into the data to show you which are the strongest decks in this meta, and which are… wait, is that Taliyah Ziggs up there!?

‘sup, come Monday, come Meta Report. This week, we see pilots dusting off old decks, and new ones taking over the meta!

The Data

Studying Balco’s Meta Tier List, we see Veigar Senna (Darkness), as well as Pantheon Yuumi DE (PhDE) at a 7% playrate (PR). 

Pyke Rek’Sai (Urgh) and Tristana DE share a 5% PR, while Miss Fortune Quinn (Scouts) and Trundle Gnar (Gnarlines) sport a 4% one.

Ezreal Caitlyn, Sivir Akshan, and Swain Gnar are the only archetypes sitting at a 3% PR.

Sorting the data by winrate, we get the following:

Tristana DE is back on top with a convincing 55% winrate (WR). 

Taliyah Ziggs (wtf?!) ((no, that’s not the nickname, but my mental state after seeing the data :P)) makes an appearance out of nowhere, sharing a 54% WR with PhDE. 

Taric Yuumi Panth makes an effort to merge with its almost identical brethren PhDE, reaching a 53% WR alongside Scouts.

Gnar Ziggs and Draven Rumble team up to put a big middle finger in the faces of all the Demacian midrange decks, occupying a 52% WR.


The Reasons

Didn’t I tell you we would dust off some historic decks? While not all of them might have a place in the meta, let’s appreciate them while they are here!

Let’s talk about the new giants first though. Darkness continues to rise in PR, while barely holding a positive winrate. If you’ve missed it, this is due to Balco’s Inequality. 

You can’t talk about it without mentioning Urgh as well. While not as overwhelmingly popular, Urgh holds on to a top 3 PR spot, also barely in the green with a 50% WR. 

These two decks are seriously overplayed and shouldn’t be as popular considering their WR. Darkness, in particular, gives a huge leeway for many Demacia decks.

Think Pantheon and Tristana are OP? Stop playing Darkness and we can talk again! If Darkness keeps being played this much, Demacia decks won’t go away anytime soon.

Trundle Gnar and Scouts continue their decline as PhDE continues to rise in popularity. 

At this point, Darkness and PhDE approach an equilibrium similar to the one with Plunder and Rally Elusives two seasons ago. With the similarity that the one (PhDE/Rally Elusives) is feasting on the other (Darkness/Plunder). The difference is that Plunder actually had a 55%+ WR, while Darkness… wins some games at least =)

Now, let’s talk about our old, beloved companions, shall we?

Ezreal Caitlyn makes a comeback out of freakin’ nowhere. Did they miss the Twinblade Revenant nerf? Have they aged so much that their eyesight dwindled to the point they can’t read the meta clock anymore? Apparently, it's "I don't give a frick about your clock" o'clock. And yes, that's a technical term.

The new version without the Lost Soul discard package works well into Gnar Swain and Gnar Ziggs, while most importantly holding its ground vs Darkness and PhDE. Except for Gnarlines, every voguish brawl is winnable for this archetype!

Thus, the matchup is quite satisfying to play, and a viable ladder option. Keep your eyes peeled for a premium guide by Maybenextime tomorrow!

Next is Sivir Akshan. The deck was already making waves last week with its great WR, and now the PR followed. Ever since the nerf of Merciless Hunter and Ruin Runner, the deck has felt very fair to play and play against. With the addition of Petricite Broadwing, that balance might have changed again.

Akshan Sivir’s matchup table being almost identical to PhDE’s – except these pesky Noxus decks – means this archetype is set up for success. You can check out my guide for the deck here (link)!

Furthermore, Gnar Swain decided to make a comeback in WR?! The deck never reached a high WR even in the first week of the patch when Gnar Ziggs was king. But now, the deck just sucks and dares to show its face with a 49% WR.

Well, there are two options:

  1. This deck will vanish next week due to its subpar winning chances.
  2. Balco will add a third deck to his inequality.

Let’s all hope it’s not the latter one. =)

Still, should it happen, check out Jasensational’s premium deck guide (link).

Lastly, Taliyah Ziggs returned from the dead. To my knowledge, this archetype was never really Tier S . Despite that fact, it works in this meta, being the second most winning deck this week!

While the 1% PR means that I can’t show you an updated matchup table yet, you can check out Wamuu’s older guide on the archetype here (link)!

It heavily benefits from Balco’s Inequality, feasting upon Darkness and Urgh, while also having some chances versus PhDE thanks to the stun of Hexplosive Minefield.

Tristana DE takes the crown in this week's report. Maybe, its WR is not convincing, but suffocating. Like I alluded to earlier, having only a few strong decks in the meta happened before, and might happen again. 

While I think the discount and Manifest mechanic of the archetype is fun, it might be a little too powerful and impoverish the number of viable decks in the long run.

Anyways, enough with my worrisome ramble. If you want to check out a guide for the deck, look no further. Maybenextime is here to educate you on how to create some Faes and make Tristana look broken in his premium guide (link)!


Honorable Mentions

Ahri Lulu

Regions
Ionia
17 cards
Piltover & Zaun
23 cards
Rarities
28 500
champion
6
epic
5
rare
8
common
21
Mana cost
3
0
3
1
16
2
9
3
4
4
0
5
3
6
2
7+
Champions
6
2
Ahri
3
3
Lulu
3
Followers
17
1
Zaunite Urchin
3
2
Boom Baboon
3
2
Flame Chompers!
3
3
Sump Dredger
3
6
Sai'nen Thousand-Tailed
3
7
Windfarer Hatchling
2
Spells
17
0
Poro Cannon
3
2
Mystic Shot
3
2
Nopeify!
1
2
Twin Disciplines
3
3
Get Excited!
3
4
Deny
2
4
Suit Up!
2

I have been preaching about this archetype for quite a while now. Ahri Lulu works well into Demacia decks as well as aggro and Darkness. 

Aikado made a Tweet about the deck, showing an 85%+ WR over 23 games!

For more average-brained folks, the archetype still maintains a 54% WR over the past 2 days. If you want to learn how to pilot Ahri Lulu to success in your ladder games, as well as how to mulligan and play each popular matchup on the ladder, check out my premium guide here (link)!


Sejuani Gnar

Regions
Bandlecity
21 cards
Freljord
22 cards
Rarities
25 000
champion
6
epic
2
rare
7
common
25
Mana cost
0
0
7
1
17
2
3
3
6
4
0
5
5
6
2
7+
Champions
6
4
Gnar
3
6
Sejuani
3
Followers
19
1
Inventive Chemist
3
2
Conchologist
3
2
Stone Stackers
3
2
Tusk Speaker
3
2
Vulpine Wanderer
2
4
Teenydactyl
3
6
Mammoth Shaman
2
Spells
15
1
Poison Dart
2
1
Three Sisters
2
2
Pokey Stick
3
2
Troll Chant
3
3
Ice Shard
2
3
Wallop
1
9
Buried in Ice
2

I was told this list is very fun to play. The concept of Gnar Sejuani recently came up again over the old-school Gangplank Sejuani Plunder one.

I haven’t played this one myself yet (as I’m working on some other spice =)), but the data says it works especially well against Demacia decks such as PhDE and Akshan Sivir.

If you wanna learn more about this one, consider checking out Sirturmund’s premium guide here (you know what)!


Jayce Heimerdinger SI

Regions
Piltover & Zaun
28 cards
Shadow Isles
12 cards
Rarities
29 000
champion
6
epic
4
rare
16
common
14
Mana cost
6
0
3
1
9
2
6
3
4
4
5
5
6
6
1
7+
Champions
6
4
Jayce
3
5
Heimerdinger
3
Landmarks
3
3
The Forge Of Tomorrow
3
Followers
10
1
Adaptatron 3000
3
2
Ferros Financier
3
3
Hextech Handler
3
7
Albus Ferros
1
Spells
21
0
Production Surge
3
0
Thermogenic Beam
3
2
Glimpse Beyond
3
2
Vile Feast
3
4
The Box
1
5
Withering Wail
2
6
Shock Blast
3
6
Vengeance
3

This one is quite spicy, since Heimer Jayce is usually paired with other regions such as Demacia. With the inclusion of Shadow Isles, we are strong into aggro decks. 

While the deck works well into the ascending Tristana DE archetype, it struggles quite a bit into Darkness, which is likely why we don’t see the deck more.

If you want to learn how to play the deck, check out Jasensational’s premium deck guide here!


Aphelios Lux Zoe

Regions
Demacia
16 cards
Mount Targon
24 cards
Rarities
25 000
champion
6
epic
0
rare
18
common
16
Mana cost
0
0
6
1
12
2
13
3
0
4
7
5
2
6
0
7+
Champions
6
1
Zoe
1
3
Aphelios
2
5
Lux
3
Followers
14
1
Lunari Duskbringer
3
1
Spacey Sketcher
2
2
Petricite Broadwing
3
3
Solari Priestess
3
3
Vanguard Sergeant
3
Spells
20
2
Guiding Touch
3
2
Pale Cascade
3
2
Sharpsight
3
3
Hush
2
3
Shield of Durand
3
5
Concerted Strike
1
5
Starshaping
3
6
Sunburst
2

Wait, what?! A viable Aphelios list? This has to be Copium!!

Actually, it’s not (copium). The deck works surprisingly well, thanks to Aphelio’s ability to tutor Petricite Broadwing. While the archetype certainly is not a top-tier one, it has some favorable matchups that allow it to stay viable in the meta.

Aphel Lux works well into Demacia decks like PhDE and Akshan Sivir, but struggles quite a bit into Darkness and Gnarlines. Check out a guide by Aphelioslover42 here (nah, just kidding… but maybe check again next week ;)).


Conclusion

After last week’s expanse, the meta contracted again.

Is this a sign of inertia and frustration, or merely a stepping stone for greater things?

Two weeks ago, Gnarlines was the deck to beat and got toppled by Demacian contenders, led by Pantheon. Maybe Ionia decks will reemerge, known for successfully halting big units.

Maybe we will see Shadow Isles with their hard removal and cheap blockers be the new region to beat. Only time can tell, and I’m happy to take this journey together with you 😉


I’m curious to see how many people read this to the end. If you’ve made it this far, tell me your favorite food in the Reddit thread comments. Just the name is enough, you don’t need to add any context if you don’t want to.

The data has been due to the amazing website by Balco while the matchup tables have been from Legna’s website. They are doing an insane job at collecting all this data and presenting it to us in an approachable manner. They deserve all the praise in the world!

Thanks also go to Hydroflare and Herko Kerghans, they have been doing lots of editing and proofreading that deserves appreciation!!

Thanks for reading and see ya next week! =)