Hey there, Raphterra here!
I’ve once again been fortunate enough to be part of the Early Access Event for the Awakening expansion. I had a lot of fun experimenting with the five new champions, and I personally can’t wait to test them out in the live server. In this article, I’m sharing 6 deck builds that I experimented with during the event!
Please take note that these decks are still in the experimentation phase. They may require further refining, but you can use these as starting points for your games once the expansion starts. As usual, once I find decks that work for me in ranked ladder, my detailed deck guides will be coming right after!
Fated Jax Pantheon
This is a deck that uses Jax‘s Weaponmaster package to consistently get Fated procs and progress Pantheon‘s level up requirement. The deck has a solid early game package of Fated units (Saga Seeker, Wounded Whiteflame) and Improvise units (Fireth, Reaper of the Sands, Ionian Hookmaster, and Wandering Shepherd).
Fated units are great targets for Improvised equipments. Upcycled Rake in particular is a great equipment for Level 2 Pantheon since Scout has been removed as a randomly generated keyword. Pantheon is the deck’s main win condition, and with Scout he can often win games in a single turn.
Camphor, the Doubt, Horazi, and Celestial Trifecta are the deck’s alternate win conditions if Pantheon gets removed. Camphor, the Doubt is a great unit to equip with The Light of Icathia in the late game. From the few games that I’ve played with the deck, I think running more copies of Camphor, the Doubt might be the way to go.
Fated Ornn Pantheon
This is another new variation of Pantheon Fated. In this list, we are running the Fated package together with Ornn. The list doesn’t have Fireth, Reaper of the Sands and Ionian Hookmaster as early Improvise units, but this version can consistently buff Fated units with Ornn’s Forge. Freljord also gives access to Troll Chant and Three Sisters, two great combat tricks for protecting your key units.
Jax Ornn Equipments
While Ornn Pantheon mostly relies on Fated units to win games, this list is an Ornn-focused deck that goes all-in on the weapon synergy. This build runs all the Improvise units to ensure that Ornn can copy a good Equipment on Turn 7. Level 2 Ornn is the deck’s main win condition, but Jax is also likely to level up and survive into the late game due to Freljord‘s combat tricks.
Similar to the previous deck, this list also runs Troll Chant and Three Sisters as protection spells. In addition to these, running several Improvise units allows this deck to get full value out of Catch!, Entrancing Lure, and Parts Made Whole as utility spells. Hearthblood Mender is a midrange unit that can help stabilize games against aggro / burn decks.
Norra Lulu Swarm
This is my initial list for Norra, who is potentially the scariest card among the new champions in Awakening. This deck looks to swarm the board with units from Norra‘s Mysterious Portals. Sneezy Biggledust! can setup devastating attacks when used with a wide board of created units.
The portal package can be quite slow in the early game since Norra needs some time to setup and draw Mysterious Portals from the deck. This is where Lulu and the P&Z package come in. Lulu, Boom Baboon, Poro Cannon, and Zaunite Urchin can start applying pressure while waiting for the Mysterious Portals to activate. Not to mention, Poro Cannon and Flame Chompers! from Boom Baboon also contribute to Norra‘s level up requirement.
This list runs several draw cards like Portalpalooza, Hidden Pathways, and Pokey Stick to accelerate the deck’s win condition of swarming the board. Eclectic Collection can be powerful when you play it with a wide board. It can potentially refill your board and inflict burn damage in the late game.
Quietus Ashe Gwen
Is it time for the return of Spooky Ashe? This is a high-pressure midrange Frostbite deck that uses Quietus as a cheap spell to remove units. The deck wins through Level 2 Ashe or through board pressure with Frozen in Fear and Rimefang Denmother. If these units die to removals, two copies of The Harrowing can swing games back in the late game.
I’m running Gwen and the early Hallowed package (Boisterous Host, Phantom Butler) to give the deck more consistency in the mulligan and the early game. Gwen‘s drain also gives this deck healing without needing to run cards that don’t synergize with the Frostbite gameplan e.g. Withering Wail, Vile Feast, etc.
Kayn Kaisa Evolve
Kai’sa looks to be continuously evolving despite the nerf to Void Abomination! This deck uses the Cultist package to activate Evolve in the mid game. Levelled Kayn, Keeper of the Box, and Ranger-Knight Defector all have 6 unique keywords together, just enough to activate Evolve.
Kayn and Kai’sa are the deck’s main win conditions. The Shadow Reaper, Rite of Calling, and Heedless Resurrection allow this deck to consistently draw and revive these champions as needed. I’m only running two copies of Kayn since The Shadow Reaper already draws him by Turn 5. Akshan takes the final champion slot to give the deck more consistency in the early game.
Despite the nerf to Void Abomination, the Evolve package still offers strong units for midrange strategies. Voidling, Belvethi Elder, and Void Blaster are all high-statted units once Evolve activates.
I’m personally very excited to play the new patch! I will be primarily experimenting with Jax and Kayn once the patch goes live. Their design really fits the type of decks that I enjoy playing. What deck / archetype will you be playing on Day 1?