5 Lineups for the Last Chance Gauntlet

Hi, Random7HS here. I wrote an article a few weeks ago about lineups that I thought would be good to bring to a Standard Bo1 Pick and Ban Gauntlet. Today I compiled a new list of different lineups that I think would be a good idea to bring to this Friday’s Bo3 Last Chance Gauntlet.


EDITORIAL NOTE: We’ve missed the fact that The Last Chance Gauntlet is actually Bo1 format. Apologies for the confusion! The lineups in this article are still largely applicable and can be played to good results in Bo1 – especially the first three presented below. The last two are much riskier, but still can be worth bringing if they contain comfort picks for you.


Even though I am not planning on playing this Friday (I am almost guaranteed to qualify for the Seasonals anyway, sitting at over 600 LP), I placed a lot of thought into these lineups and all of the decks below are the ones I have been considering bringing to the Seasonals this weekend.

Also, if you want to learn more about constructing lineups, make sure to check out an article by Agigas, who wrote a comprehensive guide a couple of months ago about general rules on creating a good tournament lineup.


1. Standard Top-Tier Decks

  • Good Against: Kench Soraka, Aphelios Twisted Fate, Ashe Sejuani, Fiora Shen.
  • Bans: Twisted Fate Fizz, Anivia, Feel the Rush, Scouts, Overwhelming, Discard Aggro, Pirate Aggro.

In Gauntlets, you can never really go wrong playing Standard top-tier ladder decks. In my mind, the top three decks are Twisted Fate Fizz, Aphelios Lee Sin, and Aphelios Twisted Fate. Unfortunately, due to champion restrictions, we can only play two of these. 

Twisted Fate Fizz is one of the harder decks to counter. Many people have been trying to fight it with decks featuring triple Withering Wail. However, a good Twisted Fate Fizz player can often bait out removal by threatening to level up Twisted Fate or dodge removal spells completely with Suit Up!.

Aphelios Lee Sin is the newest iteration of Targon Lee Sin decks. Aphelios helps alleviate many of the problems that older Lee Sin decks faced. With the addition of Aphelios, Lee Sin becomes much less susceptible to aggro decks as it can heal up with Severum.

With Crescendum, Aphelios thins the deck, slightly increasing the chances of drawing Lee Sin. In matches where Aphelios can stay protected for a few turns and level up, he can often win the game by himself even if Lee Sin is never drawn. 

Ezreal Draven used to be one of the most popular decks due to its good matchups against most midrange decks, but has since fallen out of the meta because of its bad matchup to Twisted Fate Fizz. Luckily, we can just ban that deck.

Unfortunately, this lineup does have weaknesses. Both Twisted Fate Fizz and Aphelios Lee Sin can be rushed down by decks like Overwhelming and Scouts. Both Aphelios Lee Sin and Ezreal Draven lose to Twisted Fate Fizz. Although Twisted Fate Fizz players can outplay Anivia players, it is still not a great matchup to play and Ezreal Draven is not the best against Anivia either.


2. Anti-Twisted Fate Fizz

  • Good Against: Twisted Fate Fizz, Aphelios Twisted Fate.
  • Bans: Fiora Shen, Ashe Sejuani, Ezreal Draven, Kench Soraka.

This lineup, designed specifically to target Twisted Fate Fizz, was one of my favorite lineups that I saw last weekend.

Cephalopod used Overwhelming and Scouts to win last Friday’s Fight Night invitational tournament, a 2-decks lineup tournament. Hellscreamer then added Corina Control to the lineup and won last weekend’s RCO invitational tournament, a standard 3 decks, 1 ban tournament.

Overwhelming and Scouts are both pretty straightforward decks. Both decks can outrace Twisted Fate Fizz. Unless Twisted Fate levels up early, Twisted Fate Fizz does not usually come fully online until turn 7 or 8, while Overwhelming and Scouts can start dealing meaningful damage from turn 1.

Corina Control is a bit more interesting. Most Shadow Isles decks commonly used to target Twisted Fate Fizz have two main problems. Killing Twisted Fate usually requires either a Grasp of the Undying or multiple ping cards, and Withering Wail does not deal enough damage to kill a unit buffed by Suit Up!.

Corina Control solves this issue by pairing expensive Shadow Isles removal spells with cheap P&Z removal like Mystic Shot, Get Excited!, and Gotcha!. For further removal, the deck even runs triple The Box, triple Vi, and triple Corina Veraza.

Corina Control is also very good against Aphelios decks because out of the five spells that Aphelios can generate, Corina Control really only cares about Crescendum.

This lineup, however, is not as cohesive against some of the other less popular decks. Both Scouts and Overwhelming can lose to Ashe Sejuani and Ezreal Draven. Both Corina and Scouts lose to Fiora Shen.


3. Anti-Demacia

  • Good Against: Fiora Shen, Scouts, Twisted Fate Aphelios, Kench Soraka.
  • Bans: Twisted Fate Fizz, Aphelios Lee Sin, Anivia, Feel the Rush, Pirate Aggro, Discard Aggro.

I highlighted a very similar lineup to this one in my last gauntlet article. Ashe Sejuani has always been Demacia’s worst nightmare and Ezreal Draven is able to efficiently remove threats that Demacia plays out. Tamh Kench Soraka is one of Fiora Shen’s worst matchups, and it can hold its own against Scouts.

Although Scouts and Fiora Shen are a bit less prominent than they once were, I would still expect people gravitate to Scouts and Fiora Shen for gauntlet lineups.

Additionally, Twisted Fate Aphelios is now one of the most played decks on the ladder. Despite losing to Twisted Fate Fizz, all three of these decks have favorable matchups into Twisted Fate Aphelios because they can usually out-tempo it.

All three of these decks are also very strong against random home-made or lesser-played midrange decks. If you are expecting to face a lot of creative decks, this is one of the safer lineups to bring.

This lineup, similarly to the first one, forces you into banning Twisted Fate Fizz. Both Ashe Sejuani and Ezreal Draven have unfavorable matchups into late-game decks like Anivia and fast-burn decks like Pirate Aggro. Both Ashe Sejuani and Tahm Kench Soraka are unfavored against Discard Aggro. All three of these decks also do poorly into good Aphelios Lee Sin players.


4. Anti-Aggro

  • Good Against: Discard Aggro, Pirate Aggro, Twisted Fate Fizz.
  • Ban: Scouts, Ezreal/Teemo, Aphelios Lee Sin, Fiora Shen.

Because Gauntlet qualification is on a first-come, first-serve basis, many players will likely choose to bring a full-aggro lineup with some combination of Scouts, Discard Aggro, Pirate Aggro, and Twisted Fate Fizz.

Spooky Karma is a very old concept, originally popularized in Beta to defeat burn decks by slowly healing up until turn 10 when Karma can double all healing. Coinflip played a Spooky Karma list during last Friday’s Fight Night designed for a Twisted Fate Fizz meta, with Pesky Specters to slow the game down and Go Hard to wipe the board.

All three of these decks are very good against Discard Aggro and can do decently well into Pirate Aggro. Both Spooky Karma and Corina Control lists are favored against Twisted Fate Fizz and Fiora Shen can often outplay Twisted Fate Fizz.

Unfortunately, Spooky Karma’s worst matchup right now is Scouts because it is unable to efficiently answer Ranger’s Resolve and Sharpsight. Additionally, both Spooky Karma and Corina Control struggle to defeat Fiora Shen. All three decks have bad matchups against Aphelios Lee Sin and Ezreal/Teemo.

Attempting to target aggro decks with control decks is always a risk. No matter how well your deck might counter theirs, there is the chance that you will simply get outdrawn with no interaction.

Additionally, as mentioned earlier Seasonals qualifications are done on a first-come, first-serve basis. In my experience, opponents will often play slower against late game Shadow Isles decks compared to other decks. Although this was not an issue last season, if you have a lower number of prime glories, this may not be the lineup for you.

Note: It might seem strange not to see Anivia here, given its really good matchup against Discard Aggro. However, Anivia statistically does quite poorly into Pirate Aggro, while still losing to Scouts. If you do not expect to see Pirate Aggro, Anivia is a great choice to target aggro.


5. Anti-Shadow Isles Control

  • Good Against: Anivia, Feel the Rush, Corina Control, Spooky Karma.
  • Bans: Twisted Fate Fizz, Scouts, Kench Soraka, Ezreal Draven, Ashe Sejuani.

This lineup is one of the riskier ones to bring. On one hand, Anivia has been rising in popularity recently. On the other hand, many players do not actually like playing control decks, so lists with multiple Shadow Isles decks are never the most common.

Deny has always been the bane of late-game Shadow Isles decks; Lee Sin and Fiora Shen are currently the best suited for taking advantage of Deny. 

Hexcore Puffcaps is a newer deck with a really good matchup against control because most Shadow Isles decks run very little landmark removal and take a really long time to win, allowing the Puffcaps player to slowly burn the control player with Puffcaps and eventually finish the game with an Ezreal.

However, all three decks lose to Twisted Fate Fizz. Hexcore Puffcaps and Aphelios Lee Sin both lose to Scouts. Fiora Shen and Hexcore Puffcaps both lose hard to Kench Soraka. Fiora Shen, as shown by the Anti-Demacia lineup above, is very easily targetable.


Conclusion

I think all five of these lineups have a very good shot at claiming an invite to the Seasonal Tournament this weekend. I think that the biggest factor is to pick a lineup that contains decks you are familiar with.

Personally, if I were to play in Last Chance Gauntlet, I would play one of the first three lineups from this list, due to the power levels of Twisted Fate Fizz and Aphelios Lee Sin and the ability of Scouts to defeat both of those decks.

As always, thanks for reading and all feedback, questions, and comments are welcome and appreciated!

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