Welcome to Meta Monday, presented by NotoriousGHP.
The following people made this article possible:
(Editors Note: If your name was missed, just let me know and it’ll be updated asap, we had so many games recorded the information was massive to break down. )
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 657 games for Throne Constructed and 382 for Expedition Constructed. That is right, more than 1000 games!
Praxis Midrange: 10.74%
Elysian Midrange: 7.64%
FTJ Midrange: 7.39%
Jennev Peaks: 4.77%
Combrei Midrange: 3.57%
Rakano Aggro: 2.63%
Argenport Midrange: 2.63%
Winchest Midrange: 2.39%
Mono Fire Aggro: 2.15%
Argenport Even Paladins: 1.67%
Skycrag Control: 1.43%
Hooru Control: 1.19%
First of all, thank you for once again giving me a large data set this week! The more entries we get, the better picture we can take of this week’s metagame. This week we get to see how the newest balance patch affected the meta, and in short, it hasn’t very much. We see Skycrag Aggro going from a constant feature to completely off the tier list this week, as the nerfs really hit that deck hard. We do see Stonescar rising a bit more this week, and Elysian, a deck held down by Skycrag sitting near the top of the metagame.
Some variants of Elysian this week, like Maul, a deck that has started to return to the meta especially in top tiers of play where a lot of slower decks can be found. Maul has always been a powerful archetype, that struggles to combat the aggressive decks who can empty there hand fast enough while also being more efficient then maul, allowing them to pick apart this archetype. When meta’s slow down, Maul gets to shine as casting 6 cost win conditions that involve your opponent getting lots of cards in hand isn’t a death sentence, but instead a one-way ticket to a higher rank. I expect to hear of Maul popping up more and more, as looking at the top of the metagame, I’m not convinced that Praxis, FTJ or Jennev have reasonable matchups against this archetype.
With the fall of Skycrag, more aggressive decks should be able to at least attempt to combat the metagame. The deck that really comes to my mind is any variant of Stonescar, as Stonescar wasn’t able to fight back against Skycrag very well, it fell to the wayside. Skycrag made it very difficult for other aggressive decks to exist, as Skycrag was efficient to an extreme amount. Stonescar can be built in a lot of ways, extremely fast with 1 cost units or a more midrange approach trying to be aggressive while generating value, and I’m not sure yet which is correct. Stonescar is another deck that benefited greatly from the printing of Emblems, although they may not want to play a full 8 copies since they make you play less dual power making Champion of Chaos worse.
I’m still a bit surprised that this meta hasn’t changed more with the nerfs to Skycrag, but a large part of that is Kairos, and how it ensures a lot of matchups for Praxis Midrange. Kairos is very much a card, that many decks should just concede to, as it entering the battlefield and drawing any sort of large quantity of cards ends the game on the spot typically. Kairos is a card that allows Praxis players to build there deck in such a way that they can focus on surviving the early game and ramping because they know they should almost always win if the game goes very late due to this card. Although Praxis is a time midrange deck, which makes quite attackable by things like Stonescar, I think a lot will need to be shaken up to slow this deck down.
Elysian Midrange: 16.86%
Stonescar Aggro: 10%
Xenan Cultists: 8.81%
Rakano Oni: 6.51%
Argenport Midrange: 6.13%
FPS Control: 5.36%
Hooru Aggro: 4.6%
Skycrag Control: 4.21%
TJS Control: 4.21%
Combrei Aggro: 3.45%
Winchest Armory: 2.68%
FTS tokens: 2.68%
Huh. That’s the same top 5 decks as last week, with Elysian and Cultists swapping places. Fresh off the first Expedition Tournament, won by mine and TonyGeeeee’s FPS Control deck, one thing became very clear, Elysian is the standard-bearer of the format right now. Three of the five decks that finished with a 4-1 or better record, was Elysian with one missing the top 4 cuts. This deck is performing well on the ladder, it’s performing well in tournaments and with the first ECQ approaching rapidly, I am expecting to see a very large quantity of Elysian at the event too.
FPS Control took down the first tournament of Expedition, showcasing that it is indeed possible to play control in Expedition. This deck is trying to utilize as many sites, and two-for-ones as possible in order to grind out its opponents. Two key cards stand out from this deck, that will probably break into other archetypes so lets break them down:
Karvet: I certainly looked past this unit at first, but in the world of Expedition where removal is lacking, Karvet is a great top-end piece. Synergizing well with a late-game Vara, this unit helps stabilize the board while also contesting things such as sites extremely well. One selling point was this card could be returned by Vorprex’s Choice, while also dodging choice due to creating a cultist that could be sacrificed instead. Karvet isn’t flashy but is doing enough things right that more shadow decks need to be looking into it in the coming weeks.
Incarnus: The strongest of the Invoke cycle, Incarnus fits perfectly into the core concept of this archetype, and is always a two for one This card consistently has over performed, allowing you to have flexibility while also generating a must answer threat, maybe even two. There are definitely concerns about the influence of this card, and so it will require specific deckbuilding considerations. The main play pattern of this deck is to end of turn remove the opponent’s play and then either do that again or start to develop. This is a great card for the development part, helping you resume your plan of generating value and eventually win.
Expedition is still the format about getting a big tempo swing, and I don’t see that changing anytime soon. Right now, heading into the first Eternal World Championship Qualifier I expect a lot of teams to try and adjust to this meta, and find a few archetypes that in theory should exploit some of these deck’s weaknesses. One weakness that comes to mind is most of the top archetypes, have to commit to one or two units, since most aggressive decks utilize mastery which requires additional input in order to make them efficient. This means removal such as Vorprex choice becomes key, as it doesn’t rely on dealing a certain amount of damage in the face of Finest Hour and get past Aegis with ease. This was the original reason I tried FPS Control, and I think even in the decks like Stonescar Aggro or Midrange, effects like this can be adopted to help get back the board.
That’s all for this week’s Meta Monday, I hope you enjoyed it. Good luck to all attempting to earn those QCP’s in the coming days!
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