Scars of War has been out barely more than a week, but the meta is already forming. Today we’re going to take a look at where things stand and what you should be using to terrorize the ladder or looking out for in tomorrow’s Cosmic Crown Showdown.
As of writing this article, the two best performing champions by win percentage and popularity are Kagulichu and Marshal Josephina. The popular Kagulichu decks tend to be of the Blood/Wild midrange or reanimator variety while Josephina typically sports Ruby/Diamond or Wild/Diamond Valor. Let’s take a look at the Kagulichu deck which won last weekend’s 5Shards Weekly (that’s right, there’s already been a competitive constructed tournament using Scars of War).
Underworld Crusader socketed with Minor Wild Orb of Vigil
Rune Ear Hierophant socketed with Minor Wild Orb of Brawn and Major Wild Orb of Conjuration
Dark Heart of Nulzann socketed with Minor Blood Orb of Intimidation and Major Blood Orb of Sacrifice
This deck especially highlights the power of Graven Geist combined with Kagulichu’s penchant for self bury. A few cards in the crypt makes your troops buff and your Geist pack a punch. Other recent builds of Kagulichu sported Waltz of the Damned as a mirror breaker (Yes, I’ll draw some cards from YOUR Underworld Crusader!) and Sentry of Nulzann to empower turn two Underworld Crusader or Rune Ear Hierophant. Some of the more reanimator leaning builds are using Woken Drokkatar as a finisher. Regardless of the build, Kagulichu is likely the #1 deck you should be on watch for.
Closely behind Kagulichu in performance are varieties of Marshal Josephina Valor. This deck usually manifests as Ruby/Diamond with Wartorn General and Heart of Embers, or as Wild/Diamond with Satyr’s Roost Bard and Howling Plains Alpha. Here’s a fairly standard list.
The Valor decks look to generate a plethora of Valor and tempo. The Wild variant has a powerful draw engine with Satyr’s Roost Bard while the Ruby build looks to control the game with Heart of Embers. Both builds gained a powerful payoff card in Intrepid Conjurer. Decree of Banishing is also especially powerful in these decks as almost a direct upgrade to Bring To Justice.
While the above decks were expected to perform well out of the gate, there have been a few cool surprises already. Perhaps the most interesting archetype to crop up so far is Dreadling rush. Let’s take a look at the list which placed second in last week’s 5Shards Weekly.
This fascinating rew looks to swarm the board with early Dreadling and buff them with Tech-tician. The Dreadlings also serve to buff Moon’ariu Sharpshooter and Rune Ear Hierophant while also fueling scrounge for the unexpected new powerhouse, Pesky Pippit (spoiler: the only squirrel this pesky fellow can summon in Standard is Flufftail Cloudkiller). Siege Engine Gemini and Woken Drokkatar round out the top end, providing incredibly powerful, and frequently cheap, finishers.
While the above decks have stood out to me in this fledgling meta, there are still many other decks to look out for. Escape Goat and Righteous Outlaw have given new life to both Mono Ruby Angus the Arsonist and Ruby/Sapphire Morgan McBombus. Both decks are very popular and likely to make a splash at the CCS. Mono Wild Shoku The Botanist is also thriving off the power level of older Wild cards and the newly increased power of Pesky Pippit. I’m unlikely to be able to stream tonight, but I look forward to seeing what crazy new technology players bring to the CCS!
See you on the ladder,
Varranis is an analyst for professional gaming organization Fade 2 Karma. He has played countless TCGs over the last eighteen years and brings a unique lens to HEX theory crafting and deck building based on his historical experience. Varranis has numerous tournament wins and top finishes to his name across several popular TCGs and has coached and supported players in world championship level events.