Hello and welcome back to another edition of our Top 10 Players to watch for the Rise of the Underworlds Seasonal tournament! I am Blevins, your tour guide through this Seasonal preview. I’ve hand picked a number of players who have been performing well recently on ladder in addition to community tournaments. These aren’t just the top 10 ranked players, and there is definitely a smidge of subjectivity in some of these picks. As always, if there’s someone we missed that you see as a great player, feel free to leave a comment on this post or tweet at me or @GiantSlayerLoR!
Without further ado, let’s get into the top 10!
Recent Deck: Twisted Fate Sivir midrange CMCACAYGBAAQIBQOAMBAMBA2FUDAIBYCCQ3DOUTHAMAQEBRGAECAMCQBAQDW2AIBAQDQ2
GameboyRob has been a fan favorite in multiple community tournaments. He’s also a consistent LoR streamer. I came across Rob initially in one of the Mastering Runeterra community tournaments and was very impressed. Not just by his play, but also his deck innovation. He was definitely one of the first players that was running the Marauders version of Ashe Noxus. It seemed like a meme at first glance, but it ended up being an interesting wrinkle on the meta. Rob’s recent deck is no exception. Twisted Fate and Sivir are both champs that see a good amount of play in the meta, but almost never together. I’m very excited to keep an eye on Rob’s run through the Swiss this weekend!
Recent Deck: Zed Sivir Akshan ‘Infect’
If you come from an MTG background like myself, you may know Nalkpas better by his real name, Allen Wu. Though even if you only follow LoR, you may still remember Nalkpas from the Top 32 of the Cosmic Creation Seasonal. Nalkpas is generally someone who grinds ladder early on in the season with the ‘best’ deck, and then iterates on it. This season is no exception, as many argue that some form of the Sivir Akshan is at least near the top of the meta. Nalkpas seems to have pushed even further this season though, as he’s been in top 4 with over 700 lp for a while. Some seasons he has floated right around minimum qualification or perhaps with just a few hundred LP. When I see Nalkpas really pushing high ladder, I start to get excited. The prospect of seeing him in another Top 32 is definitely something worth rooting for.
Recent Deck: Twisted Fate Gangplank Aggro CICACAIDFYAQGBQIAIBAGCAJAYBAMBA2EATC2OQDAEBAMAQBAQDAUAIEAMBAGAICAYJACAYDBUBACAZTG4
For the number 8 spot, I just had to pick these two. Both Zorig and FGW have been top ladder players for a while, and both have a Top 32 to their names. I just had to pull the screenshot of these two within 2 lp of each other on the ladder. This normally wouldn’t be worth pointing out except for the fact that these two are actual brothers. I don’t know of two other siblings in LoR that have the same success as these two. FGW is also one of the youngest competitive players out there in LoR, with Zorig not being that much older. What’s perhaps even weirder is the fact that they play relatively different styles of decks. I would naturally think that two brothers would be on similar lists or tested together, but that doesn’t seem to be the case. At the very least, the potential sibling rivalry is fueling both of them to the top.
Recent Deck: Sejuani Gangplank tempo
I do not hide the fact that I’m a big RattlingBones fan. I’ve included him in multiple writeups, and have openly said that he’s one of the most technically skilled LoR players out there. The last few Seasonals Bones has taken a bit of a break from pushing super hard on ladder or in Seasonals, but for this Seasonal Bones has assured me that he’s playing. Not only have I gotten the personal assurance that he’s playing, but also Bones has really pushed the ladder very hard this season. At the time of writing this, Bones is currently 5th on the ladder with almost 750 LP. Bones is on my short list of players whose plays baffled me with how good they were, and I am beyond excited to see him compete again this weekend.
Recent Deck: Sumpworker aggro
Shadawx is a player who has been in the community tournament scene for quite some time. He has won and performed well in many of those, most notably winning the Dreamhack Beyond event a few weeks ago. Shadawx is in a play group with both Rattlingbones and PrincessPowerful. I just spoke the praises of Bones, but for the uninitiated, let me just say that PrincessPowerful is one of the best deck builders and innovators in LoR. He doesn’t play in events very often, but anytime I hear of a new PrincessPowerful deck, I’m beyond excited. Shadawx is also a master of the off-kilter deck. He was one of the players I originally saw playing the Akshan Zilean combo decks, and in fact he used it in his Dreamhack winning lineup. Shadawx has quite a bit of range though, so I could see him bringing a crazy brewed up lineup or just playing the ‘best’ lineup super well.
Recent Deck: Sejuani Gankplank Tempo
TheBlackBoss is another player who people following the competitive scene should be very familiar with. BlackBoss is a perennial favorite in any tournament they enter and is one of the top players in Brazil. If you aren’t familiar with the competitive landscape of LoR, you should know that BR is one of the most competitive regions in the game. There are many teams in Brazil and Brazil-focused events, including GiantSlayerBR ;) , and in turn the competition has rocketed up. Blackboss has risen to the top of that community multiple times; even be lauded as the best player in BR by many players. If you’re looking for someone from Brazil to keep an eye on for the Seasonal there are a lot of great choices, and Blackboss is certainly one of the most notable.
4. Cephalopod + Cephalopod
Recent Deck: Draven Ezreal
Yes, Cephalopod’s name is on there twice, and no, it’s not a typo. Cephalopod has 2 accounts in the top 16 on the ladder right now, which is kind of insane. Both accounts have over 600 LP. While it’s not directly the same as having 1200 LP, it’s definitely still a massive amount of total LP to have. Outside of that, Ceph has some absolutely astounding tournament performances. I highly recommend looking at Ceph’s twitter (linked above) as he has his total tournament performance pinned. This is not to mention that Ceph is coming off of a Top 32 performance last Seasonal. All in all, Ceph is one of the best tournament players in LoR and has the stats to prove it. If you’re looking for an example of a carefully crafted lineup, you’re going to watch what Ceph brings.
Recent Deck: Karma Ezreal Control
Briguy is someone who has been in the LoR tournament scene since the beginning. He has popped up in the top cuts of many community events over the year or so that tournaments have been happening, and even made Top 32 of the last Seasonal. That is not unique to this list though, as there are many Top 32 players and even some multi-time Top 32 players on the list. Briguy, however, has been dominating the GiantSlayer Fight Night weekly tournaments for the past month. He has two wins in a row and a finals appearance in the last Fight Night which only had previous Top 32 participants. The run has been fantastic. What’s even crazier about the run is that he’s been piloting Karma Ezreal in a world full of Azir Irelia and other aggressive decks. Briguy has admitted that the deck isn’t even necessarily a great meta choice, it’s just a deck he’s very comfortable with. If you’re looking to play Karma Ezreal and get better, there are few players more important to watch than Briguy.
2. Tomas Zamo
Recent Deck: Zed Sivir Akshan ‘Infect’
Tomas is another player that’s coming off of a Top 32 performance. I made the mistake of not rating him high enough in the last seasonal power rankings. I will not make the same mistake this time, as we really saw a good performance from Tomas. Tomas has also consistently been in the top 3 on the Americas ladder this season, even peaking at rank 1. Tomas is one of the few players from Uruguay, which might not mean anything inherently, but can certainly be a motivating factor to represent your country. He has taken the opportunity to really push after the Seasonal, and I’m personally very excited to see how far he can go.
Recent Deck: Spooky Karma CECQCAICFEAQGAQJAEBQKEABAQBBIAYBAUKCQNADAIAQEARRAIBAEBIJAQAQKAI5FM3AEAIBAUHQEAYCCQLA
What more can be said about Majiin? He started as a humble part time streamer who hit #1 on the ladder with Lee Sin back when he was 4 mana, and now is one of the most prolific players and influencers in LoR. He is the only player in the Americas who has made 3 Top 32s and won one.This season, Majiin has been back on the grind, floating around the top 10 most of the season. It really says something about a player who is already qualified for worlds, has plenty of Top 32s and even a win, but still is out there grinding the ladder. Majiin is one of the few in the position to become the first two-time Americas Seasonal champion, and I know that he’s trying his best to get that mantle.
We know that we aren’t able to include every top player in the game on the list, as there’s only 10 spots. But we did want to throw a couple extras on as honorable mentions for you if you’re looking to really scope out the Seasonal Tournament.
For those of you who are new to this series, I generally don’t include the previous champ in the top 10. Not because they don’t deserve to be in it, but rather I have a strong feeling that there might be more in depth content coming out on them soon :)
WhatAmI being on the honorable mention list is a bit of a misnomer. WhatAmI is actually one of the few people in the Americas who has made it to 3 Top 32s. If you were betting, you’d actually be favored betting on WhatAmI to make the Top 32. I didn’t include him in the top 10 list simply to make room for a few new names. WhatAmI has been featured on many other lists I’ve done in the past and if you follow the competitive scene at all, his reputation precedes him. There’s really not much else to say. He is one of the best tournament players of all time and there is a good chance that we see him in the Playoffs.
Bluegod + Al3x
The last two players I wanted to cover are the two players at the top of the Americas leaderboard as of writing this. I unfortunately am not very familiar with either of these players right now, but I have a feeling that I will be after this Seasonal. The threshold for being in the top 5 is being north of 700 LP, and both of the players have breached 800. I generally try not to just feature the top 10 players on ladder, but I found it interesting that I wasn’t super familiar with either of the top 2. Quite possibly a sign that I need to be following these players more, but potentially that we are getting new players shooting for the top!
That’s it for our Top 10 players to watch writeup! We’re just a few days away from the qualifier rounds which means everyone is deep into tournament prep mode. This is honestly one of the more exciting times of the season as it really is crunch time. Let me know who you’re rooting for, and if there’s someone I should spotlight in a future post. Remember you can catch the qualifying rounds on Saturday over at Twitch.tv/GiantSlayerLor.
We’ll see you all then!!