Table of Contents
- Meta Overview
- Tier List
- Tier 0
- Tier 1
- Tier 2
- Tier 3
Welcome to Lorcana.gg's weekly meta report! Each week we analyze the state of the meta using data from the previous week of online and tournament play. Our tier list is updated with the latest data, while this meta report will go over what it all means, as well as highlighting some particularly strong and interesting decks in each archetype.
The tier list is separated into three tiers. Tier 1 has the strongest decks that boast a high meta share (percentage of games played) and often a high win rate as well. Tier 2 and Tier 3 decks are a notch below the top tier, with these decks usually having one or two weaknesses keeping them from dominating the meta.
A new year and a new meta report... but the same old story at the top with Amethyst/Ruby Control dominating the meta once again. Its meta share actually increased again this week, further distinguishing itself as the premier deck in the format.
Meanwhile, in tier 1 we saw a shake-up as Pawpsicles and Steelsongs Flute both drop out and Emerald/Steel Discard and Sapphire/Steel Items surge upward to take their place. The Emerald/Steel Discard deck saw a very significant bump in meta share this week and the deck has completely supplanted the Amber/Emerald Discard deck that was popular at the start of Rise of the Floodborn. The Sapphire/Steel also saw a large bump in meta share, although part of this was due to a refactoring of how this deck is tracked. Previously, the deck was separated into versions that run Cogsworth and ones that don't, but it makes more sense to combine the two into one archetype as the general game plan is the same in each version. This gave the deck a couple extra percentage points in meta share, on top of an already decent-sized rise it experienced week-over-week.
In tier 2 we find the previous meta favorites of Ruby/Sapphire Item Control and Amber/Steel Songs Flute. Both decks saw a slip in meta share this week and combined with the rise of other archetypes, bumped these decks down into tier 2. The decks are still maintaining solid win rates, so I don't think this drop has anything to do with the decks' performance. Rather, I suspect players just want to try something new as we enter the second half of the Floodborn meta.
Elsewhere in tier 2, we find a pair of Amethyst decks in Amethyst/Steel Tempo and Amber/Amethyst Aggro, both more or less holding steady in meta share from last week. While the Amber/Ruby Mufasa Roulette deck continues to rise in meta share week after week. What can we say, the deck is fun to play and quite good too.
Lastly, in tier 3, there is the traditional Amber/Steel Songs list. The deck slipped in meta share once again although it slipped less than the Flute variation. Emerald/Steel Midrange mostly holds steady but finds itself in tier 3 due to other decks rising above it. Last week's new entrant, Amber/Sapphire Healing, saw a slight bump in meta share this week but still remains near the bottom of the tier list. And finally, another new deck makes an appearance on the tier list in Amethyst/Emerald Aggro Bounce.
Also of note this week are decks that are NOT on the list as both Amber/Emerald Discard and Amethyst/Ruby Aggro Bounce have fallen below the required meta share and are now off the tier list. These two decks were both highly played at the start of Rise of the Floodborn, but as other archetypes were discovered and refined, these decks fell out of favor. We likely will need another set to revive these archetypes in these ink combinations.
Now, onto the tier list!
|Amethyst/Ruby Bounce Control
|Sapphire/Steel Item Control
|Ruby/Sapphire Item Control
|Amber/Steel Songs Flute Midrange
|Amethyst/Steel Tempo Control
|Amber/Ruby Mufasa Roulette
|Amber/Steel Songs Midrange
|Amber/Sapphire Healing Midrange
|Amethyst/Emerald Aggro Bounce
Amethyst/Ruby Bounce Control
Some questioned last week whether having a tier 0 for this deck was justified. Well, the deck continues to pull away from the pack and there just seems no other way to classify it. It's popular both online and off with no real weak matchup. Dont't worry about the win rate, which is heavily influenced by the quality and amount of players playing this deck on ladder. The deck is utterly dominant.
One downside that comes with being the best deck in the format is the price is going to be prohibitive to many players. So for our deck highlight this week I wanted to see what a budget Amethyst/Ruby Control list might look like. Even a budget version can be pricy, as this deck comes in at around $65, but it's a far sight cheaper than the hundreds you would spend on the traditional list.
Emerald/Steel Discard continues to see a real surge in popularity. Its recent tournament results have seemingly piqued the interest of the player base and it is currently the most popular deck on ladder outside of the ubiquitous Amethyst/Ruby Control. Part of the reason for that might also be because Emerald/Steel has a slightly positive win rate against Amethyst/Ruby Control. If you can get your discard engine going, you can force them to lose a lot of key cards and take control of the game.
This week we are highlighting this deck by Emanuele Strano which bagged a top 8 in a recent tournament in Italy. One interesting inclusion in this list is Bibbidi Bobbidi Boo. The card is a versatile one and can let you double-up on any enter-the-board effects. It's especially useful with a Bucky - Squirrel Squeak Tutor on board, as you can play a Floodborn character, trigger Bucky's effect and then bounce the Floodborn back to your hand and play it again for free for another discard trigger.
Sapphire/Steel Item Control
Sapphire/Steel Item Control rises up to tier 1 this week, as it saw a substantial bump in meta share. As we mentioned in the overview, this was partially due to a change in the way we classify this deck, but the archetype has been on the rise either way. A lot of times, it can feel like a better Pawpsicle deck than the actual Pawpsicle deck, as Steel's overall card quality is just better than Ruby.
Our deck highlight this week is essentially the standard Sapphire/Steel build, pioneered and refined by top Pixelborn player RMB. You ramp, you remove, you resist and you (hopefully) win.
Ruby/Sapphire Item Control
The original Pawpsicle deck drops out of tier 1 and now sits at the top of tier 2. While the deck is strong, players have been moving away from it for weeks now. It just hasn't achieved the tournament results one would expect from a deck as popular as it is.
That being said, this week we did see a Ruby/Sapphire Item deck get a tournament result. Our deck highlight is this list by Roberto Guzzetta which took home a top 8 in a tournament in Italy. The Cruella de Vil - Fashionable Cruiser is a perfect counter to all those Minnie Mouse - Stylish Surfer surfing around out there.
Amber/Steel Songs Flute Midrange
Amber/Steel Songs Flute comes in at tier 2 this week, after falling a bit in meta share. In fact, both Steelsong variants fell this week. That being said, if we were counting Amber/Steel with Flute and without Flute as one deck, it would be the second most popular one on ladder, so the archetype is still well represented overall.
In fact, the Italian tournament from this past weekend saw two different Amber/Steel Songs Flute lists take the top two spots overall. This Flute deck, from the appropriately named Daniele Vittorio, took home the top prize and is our deck highlight for the week.
Amethyst/Steel Tempo Control
Steel, arguably the best overall ink right now, again appears on the tier list in another deck archetype. This time paired with Amethyst in a control shell. The deck includes what is currently the most expensive card in Disney Lorcana, Beast - Tragic Hero. You now don't have to rely solely on A Whole New World for card draw in Steel. This opens the ink color up to a more control-oriented play style. And it has found the perfect pairing for it in Amethyst, which brings more card draw but also great late game bombs in Elsa - Spirit of Winter and Ursula - Power Hungry.
Our deck highlight for the week is this list from Ramalex which topped a French tournament held late last week. As we noted above, the deck makes great use of the abundant card draw options to keep up card advantage while relying on efficient removal to get us to the late game.
Amber/Ruby Mufasa Roulette
Amber/Ruby Mufasa Roulette continues to increase its meta share each week, as players are recognizing that with the right build, the deck is powerful one. It's not too surprising either, as mana cheating (or ink cheating in this game) is usually good. And Mufasa - Betrayed Leader is a great card for ink cheating.
This Amber/Ruby Mufasa list we want to highlight came in 2nd place at a Christmas Eve tournament in Italy. The deck, nicknamed "Big Cats", also runs Shere Khan - Menacing Predator for an alternate lore gain option that pairs well with Rush cards like Maui - Hero to All and Queen of Hearts - Impulsive Ruler.
Aggro builds are unsurprisingly not fairing well in a meta dominated by control decks. Amber/Amethyst Aggro remains the exception. Its meta share slips a bit this week, but it still remains in tier 2. The deck will likely always remain a decent option, especially on ladder, as it punishes any unrefined and greedy deck lists while winning games quickly.
This week we are highlighting this list from Alexander Um, which came in first place in a $1k tournament in the US last week. No surprises here as this archetype is fairly refined at this point. If you just want to play out characters and turn them sideways, this is the deck for you.
Amber/Steel Songs Midrange
The traditional Amber/Steel Songs list finds itself in tier 3 this week, as it falls in meta share once again. It did however gain on the Flute variant this week, as both lists dropped in meta share, but the traditional list didn't drop as much. And, as mentioned, with both variants combined the Amber/Steel Song decks make up the second-most popular deck on ladder.
Our deck highlight this week is this Steelsongs deck which placed top 8 in the Christmas Eve tournament in Italy. As this is Steel, it of course runs Beast - Tragic Hero, which is still a good card, even in a deck that also runs A Whole New World. You can never have too much card draw!
The Emerald/Steel Midrange deck held mostly steady in meta share but falls down into tier 3 as other decks have moved up. This build of Emerald/Steel also continues to lag behind the much more popular discard build. But the presence of both in the meta shows that this is clearly a powerful combination of inks.
We are highlighting a list that took home first place in a French tournament over the weekend. It's a ping build but it surprisingly only runs one Beast - Relentless. It does however run 4 copies of Beast - Tragic Hero. It's becoming clear why that card is getting so pricey...
Amber/Sapphire Healing Midrange
Amber/Sapphire saw a slight bump in meta share after its debut on the tier list last week. It still has to show itself as a viable deck in offline play, but players do look to be experimenting with the build online. It remains to be seen if one list will rise above the rest and establish itself as the premier Amber/Sapphire option.
One of the deck archetypes being explored in this ink combination is a build centered around Alice - Growing Girl. We are highlighting this list from YouTuber QuantumMercury, who has the primary win condition of Alice but also includes an item package with Tamatoa - So Shiny! offering us an alternate win condition.
Amethyst/Emerald Aggro Bounce
The final deck archetype in this week's tier list is a new Amethyst/Emerald Aggro Bounce deck. During reveal season, Amethyst and Emerald seemed a natural pairing for bounce as both inks have a number synergistic bounce cards. But players initially gravitated towards an Amethyst/Ruby pairing for bounce, not just in control decks but aggro decks as well. Well now with Amethyst/Ruby Aggro Bounce falling out of the meta, players look to be searching for an ink pairing with the aggressive Amethyst cards.
It seems they have found it in Emerald. This list from SasukenUchimura took 2nd place in the Road to Lorcana French tournament from this past weekend. Emerald has a nice suite of aggressive cards that pair well with Amethyst's bounce and card draw. Cards like Genie - On the Job and Mother Knows Best are best served to bounce your opponent's cards for the tempo gain but can also double up as bounce options for your own cards, especially Merlin - Goat, to help you close out games.
And that's it for the first meta report of 2024. We are roughly halfway through the Rise of the Floodborn meta and Amethyst/Ruby shows no signs of letting up its stranglehold on the meta. Will anything be able to stop it? Or will we have to wait for Into the Inklands?
There is also the official competitive league play coming this year. Ravensburger should be announcing the details on that soon. Could we see some format changes to encourage a bit more meta diversity? Or maybe some bans on a few of the key Amethyst/Ruby cards? I'm not sure what the right option here is, but seven more weeks of an Amethyst/Ruby-dominated meta sounds exhausting. We will have to wait and see.
Anyway, until next week, happy deck building and good luck in your games!