Giant Slayer


LoR Competitive Week in Review for 3/28 - 4/4

Have you been personally victimized by long-level-up animations? How many times would you estimate, in the last week let’s say, that you have been forced to sit through at least 3 level up animations? Or worse, how many times have you been the one making someone sit through the Shurima Cinema?

Luckily for those of you looking to get away from the Mono Shurima Movie, it had an atrocious showing in the opening week compared to the amount of social media discussion and ladder presence it generated. We only have Fight Nights to look at again (for the last time for a while, I promise) so the meta is a little skewed, but at least you can point to this article if anyone tries to sell you on anything being tier 0.

Fight Night: Legends


1st Dudu de Nunu - Ziggs/Taliyah / Riven/Viktor / Yorldes in Arms P&Z

2nd Finni - Sion/Draven/Vi / Riven/Rumble / Yordles in Arms P&Z

3rd Trivo - Sundisk / Aphelios/Viktor/Zoe / Deep

4th Maykas - Tri-Beam Control / Aphelios/Viktor/Zoe / Yordles in Arms P&Z


1st CastMin - Sivir/Akshan / Scouts / Pantheon/Yuumi/Taric

2nd GenesisCCG - Sundisk / Yordles in Arms Demacia / Yordles in Arms P&Z

3rd Broken Ball - Aphelios/Trundle/Asol / Zilean Shellfolk / Yordles in Arms P&Z

4th Darlian - Aphelios/Swain / Rubin Pile / Leona/Yasuo


1st Kevor24 - Thresh/Asol / Go Hard / Feel the Rush

2nd Thecupismine - Lulu/Ahri / Draven/Vi/Sion / Aphelios/Viktor

3rd Void - Sundisk / Kindred/Viego / Aphelios/Viktor/Zoe

4th FloppyMukdip - Riven/Viktor / Aphelios/Vi/Zoe / Yordles in Arms P&Z

As I often do, I've strategically arranged the decks for both aesthetic reasons but also so that if you just sort of skim over it you’ll notice the large clump of “Yordles in Arms P&Z” accumulated at the end of each row. The elephant in the room of patch 3.4 has been Riot’s whiff on dealing with Yordles in Arms, and to the surprise of no one, it’s still doing very well. With Mono Shurima keeping control at bay for the most part interaction has been one the lower end of medium for most of the remaining decks. This has given way to more backline decks or “Voltron style” strategies that require some setup, both of which run the risk of getting outraced by Yordles in Arms but also can’t do anything in the face of Lulu and Flame Chompers. Especially if the Chompers come in at burst speed. It’s a little rough out here.

On a more fun note, Aphelios and Viktor seem to be the new power couple as Riven/Viktor’s ladder success didn’t translate well into the tournament environment. If you haven’t seen the deck before it’s extremely similar to the old Rubin Pile, the Zoe/Vi toolbox deck that won the Empires of the Ascended Seasonal. Yeah, we went a little old school. Some players chose to keep Zoe and/or Vi in the deck anyway, but the chemistry between Aphelios and Viktor is unmatched in terms of playing off of each other. There is merit to running the tri-split, however, as Aphelios and Viktor have some pretty poor champion spells. Without much in the way of protection in most decks a lot of players are more willing to not fight over their champ and play a 2nd copy, but the deck is malleable to individual playstyle and some players have included enough protection that their first Viktor is more likely to be their last, and drawing a Vi instead of a Death Ray - MK 1 can be a bit of a difference-maker. It’s the go-to Aphelios deck for the time being and will likely stick around in some capacity as the original Rubin Pile had some very big fans, but I think we’ve just scratched the surface of Aphelios.

Much like last week outside of those 2 decks we’re not getting a general consensus from the players, with Draven/Sion/Vi being the only deck that was repeated amongst finalists. It’s much more understandable this time around as the new meta has given way to a lot of experimentation, with Riven claiming a 1st and 2nd place in BR. That said, when we look at just the finalists, we’re not actually seeing many decks that were directly affected by the patch as much as they were the slight downgrade in Demacia. Voltron-style decks, which is to say decks that suit up and all-in on one unit, are doing a lot better now that fewer Sharpsights are running around. Outside of that strategy, we’re not seeing any totally unknown factors making their way to the finals, but if we extend our reach down to the top 4 we find some gems that I’d be surprised to see a 2nd time.

It’s hard to evaluate an opening weekend meta after a large patch, and even harder to do so with only Fight Night to look at. Aphelios/Viktor is likely here to stay, Riven decks in general will probably cap out pretty early as they tend to, and Yordles in Arms is here to stay until something external is done to the deck. Things to really think about include CastMin’s continued success with triple Demacia, Dudu de Nunu’s Ziggs/Taliyah, and this continued presence of Draven/Sion/Vi that FloppyMudkip started a few weeks ago. Next week we’ll have a very clear picture of the direction the meta is headed as we have a few tournaments happening as well as the kickoff of the Runeterra Academy, though none of this means too much until we see the Seasonal balance patch at the end of the month. We knew this long season was going to have its lull, but with everything kicking off this weekend you may have already missed your window for a break as we’re full steam ahead into Tournament City for the foreseeable future.

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