The following people made this article possible:
As always, if you’d like to contribute data and have your name featured in the article, make sure to submit your games to both the Throne Ladder and Expedition Ladder forms. If your opponent was on an off-meta deck, please just write a little bit of information about it to make my job a little easier. If you have a large data set, you can DM it to /u/NotoriousGHP on Reddit, [TRS] NotoriousGHP#6765 on discord, or email me at [email protected].
This week, we had 201 games submitted for Throne and 76 games submitted for Expedition.
Even Elysian: 10.5%
Argenport Midrange 9%
Stonescar Aggro: 9%
Feln Reanimator: 6%
Winchest Midrange: 6%
FTJ Midrange: 6%
Combrei midrange: 5.5%
Elysian Midrange: 5%
Combrei Aggro: 5%
Skycrag Aggro: 3%
Skycrag Control: 3%
Rakano Aggro: 3%
Rakano Midrange: 2.5%
Stonescar Midrange: 2.5%
Xenan Midrange: 2.5%
Set 7 in Review
This week’s Meta Monday will be a bit different than normal, as we have an extremely small Expedition sample and by the time many of you are reading this a brand new set will be released, transforming the Throne and Expedition format we once knew. With that in mind I’ll be discussing my thoughts on the previous set and campaign and primarily focusing on the highs and lows of our first real Expedition format.
The Flame of Xulta: This set brought a ton of interesting cards to Eternal such as the 3 faction sites, and the invoke cycle. This set did a great job in establishing what a good set should look like, creating both an interesting Expedition format while having enough of an impact on Throne without having an absurd power level. This is the type of design I want to see moving forward, and from the looks of the newest set, that is being continued.
We saw many new mechanics, but two stood out the most in my eyes, Bargin and Invoke. Bargin only had two cards see much play, in Ark of Sol and Draconic Ire. These cards proved how powerful this keyword is allowing players to have access to strong effects without actually having to use any cards from hand. Although it did cost a market slot, it was certainly worth the cost. Invoke gave players the opportunity to gain card advantage at the cost of weaker bodies on their units, one choice many players opted for in the Expedition format. We already know this mechanic is going to be returning as many players seemed to enjoy it but what makes mechanics like this one so desirable is its ability to make players make decisions each and every game. This is something some past mechanics may have lacked but one’s like this or the Corrupted mechanic coming in the new set do a great job at creating dynamic gameplay
The real thing we all gained from The Flame of Xulta, was Expedition. Although the format did exist before this set, it’s rework began and it became a competitive format with the release of the Flame of Xulta. Here we say many players favor the less powerful format and move away from Throne, trying archetypes such as Stonescar Mastery or Xenan Cultist. One of the biggest lessons to be learned from this format is that high power level doesn’t necessarily make a format more fun, as the original Flame of Xulta format shown. Players simply seemed to be having fun with a more fair format and although certain decks became problematic.
Some players started to move away from Expedition around the time new cards were added such as the Campaigns and of course, the penta warp cycle staring Tasbu. These additions increased the formats power level and for many took away from what Expedition was, and is a decision I do not expect to see repeated.
We also saw that Expedition was simply supposed to be unique from Throne, for example Flame of Xulta expedition had substantially less power fixing then Throne meaning players were incentivized to only play a couple of factions, while in Throne playing 3 or even 4 factions is not an overly challenging proposition. With information about the next Expedition format being released earlier today, one huge note is the lack of Merchants and Smugglers and instead reliance on the new market spells. This is going to be a drastic shakeup from Throne, and one many players will welcome as this will be potentially their first format without merchants. This hopefully is a snapshot of what is to come, as Expedition needs to remain different from Throne in order to encourage people to play both formats and draw in different audiences.
Although this was a very short installment of Meta Monday, The hype for Echoes of Eternity continues. There was a lot to be learned from The Flame of Xulta, and I hope this set and future ones continue to get better due to some of the new information that has been put out there. This week did have a very small data set, so this is a reminder to send in those games and get featured in future weeks of Meta Monday, enjoy brewing in this coming week!