Hi everyone, thrilled to present you the latest guide on the Discard archetype!
Sion has fallen out of favor in this shell – due to his nerfs and the rather dominant position Ionia gained in the current metagame. With Homecoming,
With 2 midgame champions and no big enforcer to close things out at the end of the curve, the deck needs to adapt in the way it is played. Now it promotes a much more damage-oriented gameplan – hence the reason why we are seeing fewer copies of Lost Soul and the return of cards like the Ballistic Bot or Decimate.
Rumble is replacing Sion as the primary threat at the top of the curve. After we’ve established the board presence over the first 4-5 turns, we’ll be looking for cards like Ambush and Might to support Rumble, or direct damage spells like Mystic Shot or Decimate to close things off.
The Discard synergies still are crucial to the deck, as they still glue all our synergies together and provide better cycling power to look for pieces we need at a particular stage in the game.
Early on, we are looking to find units – particularly, Draven and Fallen Rider are best in order to push some damage. If possible, we also want to keep a good flow of cards in hand during that phase – which usually isn’t so hard to do, considering most of our cheap units generate a card of some sort. The hand size is particularly important so we can enter turn 4 with the possibility to summon the strongest Rumble possible.
Once we have applied some pressure onto our opponent, we can then focus on our burn plan. This plan can be unit- or spell-based, depending on the situation. You need to assess which plan is more likely to succeed as early as possible, as it will guide your discarding decisions, especially when playing out Rumble.
If our development phase went well, or if we expect a lot of healing from our opponent, the board should be our main source of damage. Through the Quick Attack and Fearsome keywords, we can get some good damage in, and with Might and Ambush as support spells, we have even more reach. Alternatively, we can plan to burst the opponent down with our various spells, finding more of them through cycling the deck rapidly with our discard.
Tech and Options
Some players still like to get a copy of Sion in this kind of builds. I personally don’t as the deck doesn’t want to go to turn 7, but, it is hard to argue that when Rumble gets a permanent Overwhelm keyword from discarding Sion, he becomes much more threatening for the opponent. In order to not break consistency of the deck when playing Sion, I recommend playing 2 Dravens and finding a spot for a copy of Draven’s Biggest Fan or two in order to keep finding him reliably in the early game.
- Grave Physician
In order to increase our raw efficiency towards finding Rumble, Grave Physician and his narrowed draw can be a nice help. Usually we would cut some support cards for it like Whirling Death or a Ballistic Bot for example. If you expect decks with a lot of healing, you can also cut a damage spell like Mystic Shot or Get Excited!
- Arachnoid Sentry
It is not as great now as it was a few months ago, but some players still like to have one copy of it in their deck to stop an important attack turn. Currently, it is mostly doing work against Ahri. But overall, Sentry is too slow for what the deck is trying to accomplish, though it could be considered as a replacement for the Whirling Death.
- Ancient Warmonger
A rather underrated card but one of the best Discard fodders for Rumble. At worst, it can be a big body with Overwhelm later in the game to try and push some damage. If you are looking for something more explosive than Lost Soul, Ancient Warmonger is something solid to try in the deck.
- Ruined Reckoner
It represents a good pressure option, especially alongside Rumble. Usually left out of the build to focus more on spells in order to close the game, Reckoner can be good in a build with Grave Physician that also betters the chances of finding Rumble reliably.
- Commit to a single hard-defined win condition
Once you enter the burn phase of the gameplan, you have to be very focused on how to end the game with a win. Whether it is the board or the direct damage, you should be able to name the exact cards you want to find in order to bring your opponent down to 0 health.
- Believe in the power of Rumble
The reason why this deck has resurfaced lately is because the metagame is focused around smaller, synergestic units rather than big heavy hitters. Once he gets Spellshield, Rumble is very difficult to deal with – for a lot of decks. Often your games will be about him and whether he can connect in his first 1 or 2 attacks. Even the opponent removes Rumble – our deck is built to accept that risk and leverage the price it would cost them.
- Find your opponent’s weak spot
With access to the Overwhelm, Elusive, Fearsome – and burn spells to top it off, you have a way to deal damage to virtually any opponent, as long as you know what kind of damage has the highest chance of finding the Nexus against them.
While I encourage you to learn each popular deck’s exact weaknesses, simply knowing the regions of your opponent is already a fairly good tell. For example, Shadows Isles and Ionia are good against burn spells, so focus on the board. Frejlord, Piltover, and Demacia are good against the board and run no healing so focus on direct damage.
- Keep it simple!
Don’t overthink it. Just keep track of your damage and draw potential, plus your opponent’s health and healing possibilities. More complex lines will matter later in your journey with the deck – but at first, mastering the fundamentals should be enough to get an above 50% winrate on Draven Rumble. Just keep calm and do tons of damage.
General Mulligan Tips
- Look for early pressure
It is easy to get tempted to keep Rumble in the mulligan. But in reality, Rumble is at his best when he follows up the early pressure so that the opponent cannot fully focus their attention on him.
- Keep damage spells if you need removal options
Mystic Shot, Get Excited! and other damage spells should be considered as removal options during the mulligan phase. They will become burn spells later on as the game progresses and our opponent’s health lowers. Keep them if the opponent has an important early target you need to answer, otherwise don’t – because you never keep burn.
- Never keep the payoff cards
Decimate, Ambush, and Might are called “payoff” cards, meaning they are extremely good when the situation is right for them, but also very bad if the situation does not fit them. Unless you become an expert on the deck and feel very familiar with most matchups, these cards should never be kept in hand.
Mulligan for: Zaunite Urchin – Fallen Rider – Draven – Poro Cannon. Mulligan for pressure and an explosive early game.
- Iceborn Poros has very few defense mechanisms. The deck relies on bringing heat through their Poros. If we ourselves can pressure them before that point, it is really difficult for the opponent to come back.
- This matchup is a race to who ever reaches their win condition first, as such, focus on developing as much as possible and only remove important pieces for your opponent.
- Your own Daring Poros are very important in order to buy yourself some time as you block your opponent, especially once you switched to your burn plan.
- The only 2 defensive tools the opponent runs is Three Sisters and Mystic Shot, which are fairly good against our champions. Rely on a wide board of units rather that a single champion
Mulligan for: Early curve – Zaunite Urchin – Fallen Rider – Boom Baboon – Poro Cannon
- This matchup is the text-book case of Draven Rumble playstyle, as we want to leverage our early curve of units pressuring the opponent and then changing gears and using our spells once the opponent starts coming back on the board.
- Pantheon also pushes for a gameplay looking to race the opponent. We need to pressure them before the opponent gets in their comfort zone and start racing back.
- Pantheon Fated is the best deck when it comes to 1-on-1 combats. In order to bring pressure, we have to look for a wide board that the opponent cannot block completely.
- Flame Chompers are great to push damage in this matchup, as most of the opponent’s defensive tools are their units on the board.
- Draven and Rumble both can get a lot of work in when they attack. The Quick Attack keyword is very powerful against Demacia. Make sure to have a Mystic Shot or a Whirling Death in order to protect them from a Barrier or buff on the other side of the board.
Mulligan for: Zaunite Urchin – Boom Baboon – Draven – Mystic Shot – Fallen Rider. Reborn Grenadier is huge if you have a way to discard it at Burst speed (Poro Cannon or Draven)
- This matchup is 2 agressive decks looking to assert dominance, and both have very limited defensive options. The early game is key in that regard in order to be in position to decide when we want the race to start.
- Our units with 3+ attack are particularly valuable as they allow us to block the Fearsome attackers that our opponent will try to leverage. Mystic Shot is also a valuable spell to remove the Frenzied Skitterer or another spider early on.
- This matchup is a lot about having an explosive turn and then keeping the lead we created. A great card for that is the Reborn Grenadier as it can take a key Fearsome block and represent a tempo swing in our favor.
- Rumble will likely be ignored by our opponent, who cannot deal with it effectively. Make sure playing him isn’t too slow, but otherwise you can safely invest in him as the best removal our opponent has is Noxian Fervor.
Mulligan for: Zaunite Urchin – Draven – Fallen Rider – Poro Cannon – Boom Baboon- Mystic Shot (for the opposing Draven) – Rumble with early curve
- In the mirror match, early tempo is key as it is the one dominating the board who likely will decide when the damage race starts. It also is very important in order to enable the powerful Rumble.
- Spells act as a removal in the board centric phase of the game, especially against opposing champions. Mystic Shot is great against Draven. Rumble is a bit more difficult to kill, hence the need to be dominant so we can be more flexible in that regard.
- Keep track of the spells that were used in the board-centric early game, as it will greatly impact the burn reach.
- Ambush is far better than Might in the mirror because of Whirling Death. If you go for Might, either do it on a Spellshielded Rumble or if you’re safe against a Whirling Death.
- There is no healing or spell interaction in the mirror. The only concern you have when you start burning them is if your opponent wold be able to chain Fast spells in response which will resolve before yours.
*If the opponent plays the Go hard variant, the matchup is unfavorable.
Mulligan for: Zaunite Urchin – Fallen Rider – Draven – Poro Cannon. Mulligan for pressure and an explosive early game.
- This matchup is a race between your damage output and their Elusive units. Usually we have the upper hand mostly because of Draven and the Fallen Rider, as Quick attack and Fearsome are great keywords in this matchup.
- Our goal is to maintain pressure without ever giving Ionia’s tempo tools a chance to be effective – spells like Homecoming and Twin Disciplines.
- We have a very limited blocking potential against Elusive units. It is through continuous pressure that we will force our opponent into blocking with it, serving as a form of removal for us.
- Damage spells are very important as they can both act as removal or burn later on. Plan ahead carefully how you intend to win the match, as this will determine the priority use for your spells.
- Without Spellshield, Rumble isn’t likely to accomplish much in this matchup. If you can’t invest the 3 cards he requires, it might be better to entirely skip him and just go wide on the board.
- Might and Ambush are a risk to play as long as the opponent has interaction mana at his disposal. Our burn spells usually are a more reliable option to close things out, but don’t refrain to using them if they are available and you have no better play.
Mulligan for: 1- and 2-cost units
- Everything at 2 or less health will die to Avalanche or Blighted Ravine around turns 3-4, meaning we want an explosive start but aren’t looking to play on the board for too long.
- The damage spells really are the important pieces of the matchup. Start counting your damage early and plan around the potential healing your opponent might have. Once you start burning, your units should be used as a distraction, a way to force your opponent into using some mana.
- Feel the Rush has some turns where they will invest a lot of mana, which gives you a windows to use a lot of spells safely. it still is important to bring some pressure otherwise, the opponent will stay high on health and you won’t be able to punish those development turn from your opponent.
- Ballistic Bots can be threatening for the opponent once they grow and can force some freezing spells out. Playing them right ater the Avalanche/Ravine turn should be optimal.
Mulligan for: Rumble – Fallen Rider. We are looking to pressure while being able to drop a maxxed out Rumble early.
- Darkness is a great deck when it come to just answering the opponent and locking down the game. It is our responsibility to develop tempo and look for opportunities to bring some pressure.
- With Spellshield, Rumble is the best unit in order to bring the heat onto our opponent and force them to play with units rather than spells. The cheapest spell they have to remove it is Vile Feast at 2 mana.
- We need to develop some pressure early on, and remove potential chump blockers to Rumble like Otterpus or Conchologist.
- Darkness has a big healing spell in the form of Piercing Darkness – but it is a slow spell. As such, unless Senna is on the board, you can ignore the spell and only consider Vile Feast as a potential out for Fast-speed healing. It is important to consider Piercing Darkness when trying to time Decimate.
- Minimorph is their only interaction to answer a unit with 3 or more health at Fast Speed. That changes when Senna is on the board, as she opens many more reaction plays for them. In order to maximise our chances to use Ambush or Might efficiently, we need to make some sacrifices when Senna is in play and focus on her.
Discard has evolved over the recent weeks, and has become more of a police deck rather than the metagame juggernaut it used to be. It now shows up to punish decks that think they can just avoid interaction and ignore the opponents, with a combination of explosive board development and a lot of burn spells.
Currently, the deck looks well-positioned, as the domination of Ahri Kennen and the rise of Iceborn Poros allows Discard to routinely face opponents who can’t interact effectively with its gameplan. With the return of control decks like Feel the Rush, however, Discard might face more difficult times.
A couple of new decks are making noise at the moment I’m writing, like Scouts or The Arsenal landmarks deck, and those should provide some fresh blood and shake things up a bit. As an opportunistic deck, Discard will need to see how the metagame shapes up and see if there are enough matchups it can prey on.
Hope this guide has been some help to some of you out there, as with the current success Spiders have been enjoying, I feel Discard should be in the conversation as well.
If you have any questions on this particular deck, or simply want to discuss the game, you can find me on the RuneterraCCG discord or on my Twitter page.
You also might be interested to learn that there are some Winter Queen Ahri skins up for grabs currently as we’re doing a giveaway – so make sure to check our Twitter pages and enter the roulette.
Until then, hope everyone has a great time in the game.