Hi everyone, Den here! Fiora Shen is what we call an evergreen archetype, one that has been around for almost ever in Legends of Runeterra. But since her nerf from a 3/3 to a 3/2, Fiora has fallen out of meta, and today we’ll be talking about the deck that brought her back to life only recently.
About 2 weeks ago, the Fiora Shen archetype has started resurfacing and today you can hear various top players recommending it as a good choice for climbing the ladder. There are 2 reasons for this comeback:
- Ionia buffs in Patch 2.11, especially the change to Twin Disciplines, and also the addition of Scattered Pod into the game. These changes have helped a Fiora who has been much more fragile since the nerf, and it strenghtened the endgame to allow you to consistently find the necessary spells.
- A metagame that pushes for early board domination and lacks variety in the way it can control the opponent’s threats. Outside of Ezreal Draven, almost every other deck lacks powerful interactive tools.
These two conditions have created the perfect bubble for one of my all-time favorite decks to return, and it is looking like a spectacular comeback so far.
Fiora Shen is a deck that aims to dominate on the board, and does so using the Challenger and Barrier keywords (though Young Witch also added Quick Attack to that list), alongside all-time greats – Single Combat and Concerted Strike.
Once the deck is dominating the board, this is where it can operate at full capacity. Where the deck truly shines is that it forces the opponent to take risks to come back into the game.
Because of Fiora’s alternate win condition, the opponent consistently has to pick between taking more Nexus damage or possibly giving a target for your Fiora.
In today’s very board-heavy metagame, with a lot of synergies between lightly-statted units, Fiora has a perfect playground to shine and win some games. And even when you don’t draw her, Shen and the Barrier/Challenger package still puts you in a great position to leverage the board in your favor.
The key principle while piloting the list is to always keep your hand filled with options. That is achieved through Rivershaper and Scattered Pod, both helping us draw spells that will serve as support tools during the whole game.
The Rivershaper also found a new friend in the deck: Laurent Bladekeeper, another recently buffed card that does wonders to help your 3-drops, letting you abuse them for either draw (Rivershaper) or advancing the win condition (Fiora).
As for the Scattered Pod, it’s his reliability that makes it so special. If you pick a Burst spell, you are guaranteed to get a buff/protection for your unit, whether it is one of the 2-cost spells or the Spirit’s Refuge. If you pick a Fast spell, you are sure to find a Strike removal – Single Combat or Concerted Strike. And lastly, if you pick a Slow spell, you know you will get Golden Aegis for a Rally.
Fiora is great at punishing the current meta-defining decks, but it can also be abused as easily itself.
If you encounter a lot of Azir Irelia, Lurks, Sivir decks, or other combat-centric decks looking to win through sheer power, Fiora Shen is the deck to show them that they aren’t getting away with it that easily.
However, decks like Ezreal Draven, or other spell-heavy decks that don’t rely on winning the combat to establish their win condition, could be extremely problematic.
As such, as much as Fiora Shen looks incredible currently, and though it is my go-to deck when I want to climb the ladder, be wary that its current power is very relative and the deck could suffer in case of a metagame change.
I’m personally ecstatic to see one of my favorite decks come back into the metagame, and being able to play it both on ladder and during tournaments has been nothing but a blast so far.
If you enjoy this deck, or want to share your own decks with the community, you can find other fellow RuneterraCCG readers on Discord. Myself, I usually am active there, but also on my Twitter, so feel free to tag me on your best achievements with the deck or simply reach out to talk about the game!
Want to learn more about Fiora Shen? An in-depth guide for the deck is in the works and coming next week. Feel free to send your questions on Twitter or book some coaching here.