WarpMeta took a week off during E3. Luckily the community stepped up and the comically named “1st annual ESL Memorial Tournament” was held in its place on Saturday. At the memorial tournament, the two big dogs of the format, Aggro Hlaalu and Uprising Scout, were unsurprisingly the most represented archetypes with another competitive staple, Giants BM, being the next most played. While he eventually fell in the semi-finals to superthx555 it should be noted that FroGGer91 made an insane run at the event taking down Frenzy1, Warriors7, and Traitor-Joe. He did so with a lineup that basically Consisted of 3 Crusader decks; one true Crusader, one splashing into green for Manor, Puppeteer, Skulk, and Mournhold Traitor (notably omitting Hlaalu Oathman as a result of how few Agility creatures it played), and one splashing into purple for Redoran Forerunner, Young Mammoth, and Sower of Revenge.
FroGGer91: Aggro Hlaalu
At the end of the day, it was plzdonhakme who took down the memorial tournament with a lineup consisting of Uprising Shout Scout, Aggro Dagoth, and Chanter Tribunal. Hakme is a long time Scout player, putting in a lot of the work that has helped define the deck as we currently understand it, and more recently, has begun expanding the pool of decks at his disposal in order to compete in tournaments. Over the past few weeks various flavors of Control Tribunal have been repeatedly making appearances in tournament winning lineups. I noted during the tournament broadcast that it was remarkable how many times we had been going over matchups before a match started and I had thought that Tribunal was the ban. The deck had not totally taken off in popularity yet, only being piloted by four players at this event, but was continuing to perform very well in the hands of strong players.
plzdonhakme: Chanter Tribunal
A week later, the participants of WarpMeta #23 seemed to have taken note of developing competitive trends as remarkably Control Tribunal was able to usurp both Scout and Hlaalu in play rates. However Hlaalu and Scout still maintained high representation alongside, Giants BM, and a rising Control Telvanni (of which a few different variants exist). A huge spread of interesting takes on the meta were also present. From Goblin Scout, to Support Mage, to Market Archer, creativity was not in short supply. One deck of note from the event was finalist reireibarker’s dedicated combo Ox Telvanni. It’s been awhile since pre-nerf Nix Ox combo was running rampant on the TESL competitive scene but more and more players have been having success with variations on Telvanni. These decks are able to play control for the early to mid game before eventually comboing off to finish their opponents, filling their boards with large minions before utilizing giant bat and mentor’s ring to seal the deal. The deck also had some crazy highlight moments such as this one where rei was able to play 42 mana worth of cards on turn 7: https://clips.twitch.tv/AgreeableCaringSheepOSsloth
reireibarker: Beast of Burden OTK
Ultimately taking down his second tournament in a row, plzdonhakme was able to come out victorious at WarpMeta #23. Still relying on Uprising Shout Scout and Chanter Tribunal, but swapping out his Aggro Dagoth from the previous week for his own take on Control Telvanni; a Conscription build that, while not going all the way to build around Ox Combo, ran the bat/ring combination to give it some more late game proactive ability than other builds such as Warriors7’s which was covered in the prior recap. As this is a recap of two tournaments won by plzdonhakme it seems like it would be a bit wrong not to feature the Scout deck for which he is known. Notable tech choices present in his list this week include a 1-of Dark Harvester, a 1-1 split on the 5 cost Priests, Odahviing, and the decisions to cut a Scout’s Report as well as a Fighters Guild Recruit. Here is the list that hakme ran for WarpMeta #23:
plzdonhakme: Uprising Ramp Scout:
While a number of powerful decks are beginning to cement themselves as key players in the metagame, a huge number of decks are still being utilized at the highest levels of play to great success. We are just a week out from the first Masters qualifiers and it will be very exciting to see what the game’s best players come up with to combat the meta. Join WarpMeta next Thursday at 7pm EST for our last look at the meta before qualifiers begin!
Until next time,