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 them to /u/NotoriousGHP on Reddit, [TRS] NotoriousGHP#6765 on discord, or email me at [email protected]
The quality of the metagame breakdown depends entirely on how many submissions we get. These are our significant thresholds:
0-222 games – I am not confident in the data we have, the quality of analysis will deteriorate greatly.
222-285 games – I am confident in the value of our data, the articles will function perfectly normal in capacity
286-399 games – The metagame breakdown will include any tier 4 lists I have enough data for.
400+ games – The sample size is big enough for more precise rounding.
This week we had a sample of 371 games for Throne Constructed and 526 for Expedition Constructed.
Throne Meta Breakdown:
Praxis Midrange: 20%
Grodov (FTJ) Midrange: 11.86%
Jennev Control: 5.24%
Skycrag Aggro: 5.24%
Elysian Midrange: 4.9%
Elysian Tempo: 3.85%
Stonescar Midrange: 3.85%
Stonescar Aggro: 3.85%
Ixtun Control: 3.5%
Even Argenport Paladins: 2.44%
Argenport Midrange: 2.44%
Aggro Combrei: 2.44%
Rakano Aggro: 2.1%
Before diving into Eternal’s oldest format, I’d like to thank Isochron for stepping up and writing Meta Monday last week while I worked on a paper, that paper would not have been finished without them helping out. Now, to dive into the Throne format. The Throne format has been dominated for a number of weeks now by the two decks packing Kairos, a card I seem to talk about every week at this point. Praxis Midrange comes in at tier 0 with a 20% metagame representation. This means on average, every completed form entry I was sent came with 2 Praxis entries, and with cards such as Vanquish being nerfed, I don’t see this changing anytime soon.
Praxis and Grodov have clearly taken control of this meta and for good reason. Both of these decks have early interaction in cards like Torch, while Praxis has the ability to have more aggressive draws with more ramp, Grodov has lots of early units and can catch up quickly with cards like Harsh Rule or Shen-ra Speaks after developing its power with merchants and Amber Acolyte. The key to these decks is not only can they get ahead early, but they both have ways to go over the top of there opponents with Kairos, and in Grodov’s case Xulta Arcanium as well. These cards go over the top of almost everything in Eternal right now, making these decks very hard to exploit. Certain decks such as Ixtun Control still remain apart of the metagame and should be able to combat these decks by clearing the board constantly and not having to win the game via units.
Looking at the rest of the tier list, it is clear that the meta is warped around these two top decks. Decks such as Stonescar or Elysian variants should have solid matchups into them, as they both have cheap interaction, fast clocks and the ability to contest a board clear with either Sabotage, or a counterspell such as Backlash. This weekend we have another QCP challenge, this time for Throne and I fully expect the metagame to be Grodov, Praxis or decks that are designed to target them.
It’s worth noting that two versions of both Elysian and Stonescar made it onto the tier list, but which one should you be playing? For Stonescar, you can either go aggressive with Bandit Queens and Shift Units, and try to maximize Emblem’s and burn spells to close games, or you can choose to slow down and play cards such as Vara or Tasbu which help out grind decks while also being large deadly units that decks such as Praxis struggle to answer. Right now, I think the aggressive variant is likely better as the top decks of the format can likely still out grind the midrange variant, and although the midrange variant is more consistent, the aggressive variant is simply more powerful currently. For Elysian, I also think the most efficient “tempo” orientated builds are miles ahead of its midrange counterpart. There are two variants of Elysian tempo currently, an aggressive deck with a lot of cheap interaction, and then there’s Maul. I don’t have a good picture of which is actually more popular currently, but I think right now Maul is a stronger archetype. Although it has issues against the aggressive decks, this variant has a lot more tools to fight Grodov currently and I’m not convinced that Elysian Midrange does actually beat Grodov, as it’s much worse into a board clear. Maul is always a very situational deck, sometimes it’s unplayable and sometimes its the deck to beat, and right now I think Maul is still one of the best ways to attack this Metagame, especially because it does not really care about Kairos
Expedition Meta Breakdown:
Elysian Midrange: 24%
Xenan Cultist: 10.9%
Stonescar Midrange: 8%
Rakano Oni: 7.64%
Stonescar Mastery: 7.29%
Kerendon (TJS) Control: 5.09%
Hooru Aggro: 5.09%
Combrei Aggro: 4.73%
Makkar (FPS) Control: 3.63%
Argenport Decimate: 2.55%
Argenport Midrange: 2.18%
Linrei (JPS) Curses: 2.18%
This weekend marks the first Eternal World Championship Qualifier, where many players will bring what they think is the best Expedition deck to battle for a shot at World’s alongside more cash then my bank account has ever seen. Although this week’s breakdown looks like an Elysian dominated metagame, there are a few things to note before diving in. Most of the data I received was from early into the week, and from my understanding as the week progressed different variants of Stonescar, and Cultist really has taken over in the meta.
I do think this breakdown, is close to what players should be expecting this weekend, with a little less Elysian and a little more of tier 1 and 2 decks. Elysian continues to perform well for many players, although its weaknesses are very easy to exploit which both Cultist and Kerrendon Control are currently doing. Kerrendon gets to play a mono sweeper game plan between Malediction, Shen-rai Speaks and Ageworn Visage, and although Elysian has cards such as Daring Gryffin and Edict Of Grodov to counterplay these cards, Elysian still has to develop onto the board at some point. Cultist has the ability to ignore a lot of what Elysian wants to do, and with cheap interaction and sacrifice effects, Cultist can also play around and generate value from its units that Elysian has attempted to interact with, with cards such as Permafrost or Sodi’s Spellshaper. With this in mind, Cultist can also go over the top of Elysian with both Vara, Fate Touched and Xenan Temple, both of these are incredibly hard to come back from for the Elysian Player.
Of course, Elysian isn’t the only deck and we see multiple variants of Stonescar doing well. Stonescar Mastery was what I played to an 18 point weekend last weekend, but since then many Stonescar pilots have shifted towards the most consistent midrange shells. Some of these try to play a dragon synergy package, and some are very similar to mastery except instead of playing Akko and 1 cost units, they play Incarnus, more removal, and Eclipse Drake. All of these variants seem incredibly strong, and I think the person or team who comes up with the optimal build may be the winner of this ECQ. Many players will bring an extremely aggressive build of Stonescar Mastery this weekend, and although this deck is insistent and has problems against Cultist, it is likely the most powerful deck in Expedition and has some insane high rolls. For those who feel like they are gonna need to high roll to win this event and run hot, this is certainly your deck.
To round out our tier list, we see a lot of Justice based midrange decks still putting up solid numbers. Almost all of these decks can utilize one of Expedition’s strongest cards, Finest Hour. One big note is that I believe all 5 of the bottom decks, are still being refined as they have not hard the same focus placed on them as many other decks. With this in mind, I’m not sure these decks aren’t as strong as the others, but since many players have looked elsewhere people are still scrambling to find out how these decks should be approached because they all have a lot of different options available to them. Both Linrei Curses and Makkar control have been built in many different ways, such as Linrei being more unit centric or a control shell trying to utilize Wanted Poster + Felrauk’s choice and Makkar can both be built trying to play as few units as possible and rely on sites to close games or with many value units such as Eclipse Dragon and Cozin Darkheart.
Thanks for reading this week’s Meta Monday! Good luck in this weekend’s QCP event and the ECQ, but remember don’t burn yourself out. This is a total of 70 games if you play all runs of both, not including the potential games of day 2 of the ECQ, and so remember to budget your time and take breaks in order to not play while fatigued or burned out. Until next time
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