This is a Guest Article by Ben Sullivan for Team Rankstar.

Ben is a former MtG grinder who has since converted solely to the EPIC Card Game. In the 2019 Origins Tournament, Ben was a top 8 finalist.

If you would like to see more EPIC content, let us know!

For information on how to play the EPIC Card Game, check out our first guide HERE.

With the announcement of full app release in February, it’s time to take stock of the current constructed meta. We’ve had three monthly tournaments in the current meta and there are some interesting insights to be had on how the first few public constructed monthlies will shape up. You need data to understand where the meta is, so I’ve compiled all the best deck lists and stats publicly available. 

Wild Based

If you’re unsure what to play Wild should be your first choice. It’s the boogeyman of the format and has been >60% of the meta in each monthly tournament so far. Its game plan is as straightforward as its metashare: get them dead before they get you dead. With big bodies and big tribute effects like Brachiosaurus, T-Rex, and Kong, it attacks and then finishes opponents with burn spells. Usually paired with Sage cards that allow it to keep up with the control decks in hand size, Wild/Sage is the main pillar of the format and popular for a reason. 

If you want to learn more about the deck Tom Sorenson has a good write up on the general strategy of the deck on his blog.  If you want a basic list to jump into the game with, Atlanta’s decklist from the 2019 June Monthly is a great place to start with the deck. He added Final Task as a way to get more Tribute effects out of his champions alongside Drain Essence to remove a threat and buy himself some time via lifegain in the mirror match. In August, the deck went in a few different ways. A few pure Wild decks showed up, but TatDaddy took the tournament down with a Wild/sage/evil list that played a package of one-ofs and an Arcane Research as an extra way to search for them when needed. A more Sage based list was played by EmperorOTides in the June Monthly. Since the core of this deck is so strong, there are a ton of different ways to go with the deck that change how it plays in small but important ways. 

Evil Based

The main counter to Wild is the Evil control deck. Taking advantage of life gaining removal in Drain Essence and board control champions like Medusa, Angel of Death, Kong, and Raxxa this deck controls the board and deals small chunks of damage where it can to grind the Wild deck out of resources. This style of deck slowly builds to a point in the game where it can pivot from a reactive defensive position to closing out the game in a few turns with threats like Raxxa, Angel of Death, and Medusa. The main draw to this deck is the ability to out-play and react to what your opponent is doing in a way that builds up advantages in tempo and card advantage over longer games. 

This deck wants to try and stabilize control over the game while dealing small amounts of damage to your opponent with zombie tokens, demon tokens, and sometimes big hits with larger champions. A good list to take a look at is Livious’ deck from the 2019 June Monthly. Noverb’s list from the same tournament gives you a different flavor of the same style of deck. His list includes the Drinker of Blood + Zombie Apocalypse + Flash Fire combo that can end the game from large life differences and out of seemingly nowhere. Noverb’s list also includes some interesting utility cards that give the deck more play against a wide field. 

Combo Decks

There are a few decks that you should be prepared to play against that do not command a large meta share. Tokens, Drinker combo, and Kark are all good decks that can win tournaments and surprise an unsuspecting meta.

Tokens

Human tokens has been a deck in the works since Base. The deck relies on creating and buffing its champions with events and then ending the game in one or two turns with tens of >3 offense human tokens. 

Tokens has always felt one or two cards away from being insanely good, whether that’s less Wither and Flash Fire being played, just one more way to protect its tokens from board wipes, or another way to make them unblockable. Be prepared for this deck to show up in some small numbers during tournaments and pack Flash Fires, Withers, Wave of Transformations, or Resets. While this deck is not as powerful in app as it is in Pantheon it can steal best-of-1 matches from you if you are not careful. A good list to use as a base is TomEpicGamin’s list from the 2019 June Monthly. The deck can also be a hybrid that uses the Drinker combo to finish the game with its own tokens without ever attacking.

Drinker Combo/Army of the Apocalypse

Both of these decks rely on the discard pile to combo off and deal a large amount of damage in one turn. The method for ending the game is different, but the play styles are close to the same. Both decks rely on keeping their opponents on the backfoot or keeping the game going long enough to cobble together a large enough discard to finish the game in one turn. 

Drinker Combo usually builds a large discard full of champions and then casts a Zombie Apocalypse on their opponents turn to create a large amount of zombie tokens that they then Flash Fire on their own turn with Drinker in play to deal lethal or game ending amounts of damage to their opponent. 

Army of the Apocalypse decks play a little more Sage cards and deal damage with unblockable or repeating direct damage via Forcemage and Shadow Imp. This deck plays a lot of Sage and Evil hasty threats and is extremely aggressive and once their discard has enough unblockable or powerful threats in it they play Army of the Apocalypse to return them all and attack for lethal damage. Army decks usually put their opponents into awkward positions and force them to board wipe reactively on the Army players turn. The Army player can then play Army of the Apocalypse and win through combat. 

Both of these decks build up their discard resources over longer tempo games so Amnesia and Heinous Feast can set them back long enough for a control or Wild player to win while they rebuild. However, both of these decks can win without their combo so you can’t rely on counter play alone. 

Kark Lifegain

Kark was the boogeyman of the pre-ban format. The bans nerfed the deck, but every now and then it likes to come back and remind the meta Kark is still viable. Kark decks win through stalling the game long enough to get to 60 life and win by playing Kark with 6-7 Good cards in hand. Cards like Drain Essence, Angel of Light, and Second Wind allow the deck to stall and gain life long enough for Kark to hit the board and win the game. 

This deck is a jack of all trades control deck. It does everything just good enough to win games, but it doesn’t do anything besides gain life terribly well. A lot of its cards only gain life and do not affect the board or hand besides being recallable meaning this deck can really boom or bust depending on the skill of the pilot and the order cards are drawn in. A good list to start with for this archetype is Atlanta’s winning list from the 2019 October Monthly.

Final Thoughts

The format looks pretty homogeneous, but underneath the Wild surface there are a lot of angles by which to attack the meta. Not only can Wild be beat, but the decks that beat it are skill testing and rewarding to pilot. I hope these breakdowns have helped you gain a surface level understanding of the meta or have refreshed your memory of where the meta sits before the public launch. If you have any questions or feel I left something out feel free to DM or tag me on Twitter or leave a comment. I will read them all!

For information on how to play the EPIC Card Game, check out our first guide HERE.

7 Responses

  1. Excellent work compiling all of this information from the monthly tournaments so far. Actively looking forward to reading and sharing any and all future Epic articles. (Also been meaning to look more into Gods Unchained so will have to look through those articles too…at least.)

    Aside from Raging T-Rex, Strafing Dragon, Brachiosaurus, and Smash and Burn, have you noticed any other cards consistently showing up in the Wild core across the different versions? Or even are any of those falling out of favor? I’m curious about 0’s in particular since there seems to be so many different ways you can go with Wild 0’s.

  2. Just recently got into MtG, but then heard about Epic and it’s digital release. Very excited to try it out. Love the article, but a lot of it has no context for me as a newbie. Would love some content for someone who has never even played a game yet, like intro to the deck types and such!

  3. @Tom For me the real movement in 0’s has been the use of Flash Fire over other targeted 2 damage Wild zeroes. You should probably cut Thoughtpluckers if you do play FF. I’ve played around with Lightning Strike, but I almost always regret it over other options.

  4. @Bene Interesting, that shift especially around Wolf’s Bite and Flame Spike has been interesting to watch unfold as well. Thoughts on Spore Beast?

  5. Great article! Can’t wait to see how the meta evolves as more and people jump into this game. I don’t play too much constructed, but when I do, I always throw in Surprise Attack + Kong, it’s my favorite “combo” in the game, and both cards are great on their own too.

  6. I made a translation of this article into Russian in the group devoted to TCG – tcgoru on social network VK. Unfortunately the antispam bot does not allow to indicate the direct reference article.
    Я сделал перевод этой статьи на русский язык в группе, посвященной TCG – tcgoru в социальной сети VK. К сожалению прямую ссылку на статью не дает указать антиспам-бот.

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