Breakout Decks from Aegis Esports League Week 7

In this new meta, the aegis Esports League is a great indicator of what to expect in a tournament format! DragonGuy highlights the breakout decks from this week.

Hello everyone, DragonGuy here, and today I want to talk about the best performing decks that emerged from Week 7 of the Aegis Esports league.

What is the Aegis Esports league though? Aegis Esports, formerly Runeterra Academy, hosts a 7 week LOR league that pits each team of 3-4 players against 7 other teams in their groups. Every week, they’ll face 2 other teams in their group. Each player has to bring 3 decks in the Riot Lock format, and with 3 players playing per team each week, this means 9 decks total.

The twist is that each region combination and champion can only be used twice, so each team can’t bring the same deck more than twice. Each of the 3 players plays a best-of-three (BO3) match, and the team that wins the most BO3 wins the match. The league contains many top players from ladder, so I believe it is a great place to see what decks are doing well in the meta.

We’re down in the final week of the season, and with a brand new patch released just a day before decks were locked in, the meta was up in the air. So, what archetypes emerged from this? I’ve got 3 returning archetypes that dominated, and then 3 new archetypes that are rising up to challenge these top decks.

Returning Archetypes

While there were a lot of newer cards that came out, some of the decks from last patch are just as good now as they were last patch. As a result, the most popular decks were all returning archetypes.

With so little time, sticking to decks that have proven to be strong was a perfectly valid strategy, and they put up solid results in both regions. Let’s start with the most popular deck from both regions: Pantheon Yuumi.

Pantheon Yuumi

  • Americas: 
    • 19 players (#1)
    • Times banned: 20/38 (52.63%)
    • Winrate: 11/18 (61.11%)
  • EMEA:
    • 18 players (#1)
    • Times banned: 16/36 (44.44%)
    • Winrate: 7/14 (50.00%)

Pantheon Yuumi has continued its reign of domination into the latest expansion. It was the most popular deck in both EMEA and AM this week, and was able to boast a respectable win rate while maintaining a sizable ban rate.

Pantheon Yuumi thrives by creating one or multiple tall units, as it can turn any unit with the fated keyword into a lethal threat if it isn’t answered. The core of the deck is Saga Seeker, Wounded Whiteflame, and Pantheon. These units will grow into your win conditions over a few turns thanks to their Fated Keyword.

The rest of the deck contains a plethora of ways to proc Fated, from combat tricks like Sharpsight to strike spells like Single Combat. Zenith Blade turns your non-overwhelm fated units from overstated beaters into lethal threats, and replaces itself on Daybreak to provide some card advantage. Cataclysm lets you threaten to end the game on non-attacking turns, while also acting as another way to remove opposing units with yours.

With the new patch, finding matchup data is difficult, as the meta has yet to settle and is still in a state of constant shifts. Because of this, I won’t be diving into the positive and negative matchups for the decks featured here today. Still, Pantheon Yuumi is proving to be a force to be reckoned with, and is a great choice for both ladder and gauntlet.

Afaelios

  • Americas: 
    • 17 players (#3)
    • Times banned: 6/34 (17.65%)
    • Winrate: 18/33(54.55%)
  • EMEA:
    • 6 players (#8)
    • Times banned: 4/12 (33.33%)
    • Winrate: 5/7 (71.43%)

Afaelios was one of the top decks last patch, and had the highest presence among lineups that advanced to top cut. While there was a swath of new cards from the latest patch, the deck remains largely unchanged, although you now have new cards to hit off of Conchologist. While it had a low presence in EMEA, it had a solid win rate in each region.

Afaelios is a Fizz Aphelios BC Targon deck that is able to generate a ton of value. It utilizes the Fae package for a strong early game, which really gets rolling if you’re able to drop a Gleaming Lantern that sticks. After the strong early game, you have the ability to continue generating value from Aphelios.

Aphelios provides the bulk of interaction with his moon weapons, but cards like Pokey Stick and Wallop are also solid options. Fizz with Attach units excels at ending the game, as he is incredibly difficult to interact with thanks to his ability. Overall, the deck has a lot of agency available to it, and there are plenty of different lines to take each game.

3. Viego Shurima

  • Americas: 
    • 15 players (#4)
    • Times banned: 16/30 (53.33%)
    • Winrate: 9/16 (56.25%)
  • EMEA:
    • 10 players (#2)
    • Times banned: 5/20 (25.00%)
    • Winrate: 8/13 (61.54%)

Viego Shurima was rising in prominence before this patch, and even with all the new cards, the deck was still popular and did quite well. While there is a Noxus version on the rise with Legion Deserter, there were only a few people who brought that (like me). Still, the Shurima version was more prevalent this week, and put on a solid performance.

Viego Shurima seeks to combine the powerful SI Viego package with some tools from Shurima. Rite of Calling gives you a way to tutor for Viego, making finding him more consistent. Rite of Negation and Ancient Hourglass can protect your Viego from removal, giving him a lot of staying power. With this protection, the goal is to play Viego and level him up, which will give you board domination.

Invasive Hydravine serves as the other top end threat for the deck, making an ever growing Encroaching Mist every turn. Overall, Viego is a really good pick right now, as a lot of decks have trouble removing Viego through this deck’s protection.

New Archetypes

With some of the old guard out of the way, we can now go over some of the new decks that were brought in from the patch. Both regions had a fair amount of experimentation, but it was particularly prevalent in EMEA, as there were more new archetypes with a high presence.

Let’s go over a few of them now.

4. Deep

  • Americas: 
    • 15 players (#4)
    • Times banned: 16/30 (53.33%)
    • Winrate: 9/16 (56.25%)
  • EMEA:
    • 10 players (#2)
    • Times banned: 5/20 (25.00%)
    • Winrate: 8/13 (61.54%)

After a few seasons of riding in obscurity, Deep is finally back, and it’s performing well. While not entirely new, Deep got a few new tools that hoped to revitalize the archetype. At least here in Aegis that looked successful, as it was easily the most popular of the decks with new cards. Combine that with a solid win rate in each region, and Deep is looking like it might return as a player in the meta.

The goal with Deep is to toss early to set up a large board of sea monsters to crush the opponent. Early toss cards like Dreg Dredgers and Sea Scarab are vital early drops for accelerating your progress towards getting deep. Undergrowth is an amazing addition to the deck, providing some early healing and tossing to advance that gameplan.

Add onto that Megatusk healing once you hit deep and Deadbloom Wanderer, and now Deep is looking much better into aggressive strategies. These early tools makes it much easier to curve into the strong midgame and drop a flipped Nautilus to flood the board with Sea Monsters.

If that doesn’t work, Maokai gives access to a secondary win condition milling out the opponent, and can come down early to threaten opposing units. Deep has made a big splash this week, and if it can keep putting up solid results like it did this week, it’s going to be here to stay.

5. Illaoi Demacia Decks

  • Americas (N/A)
  • EMEA (N/A)

Illaoi Demacia came roaring onto the scene this week, with plenty of variations on the versions. Because there were so many different versions of Illaoi Demacia, it was hard to pin down the data, so there will not be statistics for these decks. Rest assured, however, that Illaoi had a high presence this week across both regions, and many of  the different versions boasted positive win rates.

Illaoi Demacia has been on the rise, and for good reason. Illaoi and her package synergizes quite well with the protection and rally effects of Demacia. You want to be attacking to grow her tentacles and push for damage, and Cataclysm and Golden Aegis let you get more attacks in. Tentacle Smash, strike spells, and challengers supply you with plenty of interaction for opposing units.

The biggest question with Illaoi Demacia is what the secondary champion should be, and there’s plenty of pairings. Lux, Jarvan IV, Garen, and even Twisted Fate have all been pairings people have tried out, but as of the time of this writing, one hasn’t really come out on top. For this article, I’ve shown the Lux version, but the other pairings each have their own advantages to them.

6. Annie Jhin

  • Americas: 
    • 11 players (#8)
    • N/A
  • EMEA:
    • 5 players (#11)
    • N/A

Last up on our batch of new decks is Annie Jhin, and all the skills that go with it. This deck utilizes 2 of the new champions in a very “skill”-intensive deck. The deck offers a new playstyle for aggro decks, and quite a few people hopped on the hype train for it this week. Unfortunately, I was not able to capture the ban rate and win rate for the deck, so those have not been listed. Still, the deck had a decent presence for a brand new archetype, showing that the players had some confidence in the archetype.

Annie Jhin is an aggressive deck that combines all the skill followers from Jhin’s origin with aggressive Noxian cards. You have a large assortment of 1 drops to choose from, but it’s the 2 drops where the deck starts diverging a bit from other aggro decks. The Stagehand, Solari Sunhawk, and Arachnoid Sentry offer the deck a lot of ways to stun opposing units, as well as Jhin himself. These cards level up your champions, set up strong attacks, or cripple those of your opponents. This gives the deck some defensive tools, and allows it to set up a really strong attack even through a wide board of blockers.

Noxian Fervor and Decimate help provide the last bit of over the top damage the deck needs. While it has the shares the end goal of other aggressive decks with an exploding Nexus, this deck offers some new ways to do it, and gives you more room to maneuver and some different choices to consider along the way.

Closing Words

With matches wrapping up, the regular season comes to a close. Unfortunately, my team did not advance onto the playoffs, but there are plenty of good players and teams that will be competing for first place.

With an extra week now for the meta to settle out, it will be exciting to see which decks the teams will value next week. We’ve already seen a big shake up at the top, as Taliyah Ziggs and Mono Shurima barely made a splash in AM, and were completely absent from EMEA.

The first round of playoffs is going to be happening this Thursday over at their Twitch. I’m excited to see what the players will bring out this week, and what changes in the tournament meta we get to see.

With the regular season complete, this will be the last one of these articles I’ll be writing for this season. Thank you all for reading, it’s been fun to go over the different shifts from Aegis.

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Dragonguy

Dragonguy is a just a guy who enjoys playing some fun LOR decks. After taking targon's peak and Deep to top 32 of Guardians of the Ancient, he's been constantly looking to improve his game. Also, he's been playing a lot of Path of Champions lately, and is really enjoying Jinx.

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