Iceborn Poros Deck Guide

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Iceborn Poros gained a lot of attention when Patch 3.0 was released, and while most of the outspoken player base didn’t seem to enjoy the playstyle of it, still, the competitive Ranked mode was infested with Elusive Poros. Iceborn Legacy was a huge buff, as the spell going from Slow to Burst largely stopped the opponent from interacting.

The deck relies on two important cards to set up its gameplan, Daring Poro and Iceborn Legacy. Poro Snax acts as another, smaller, Iceborn Legacy and also plays out well to buff up your Poro units.

Early game you’re looking for Daring Poro or Poro Cannon. It’s crucial to find a Daring Poro on the first couple of turns or your whole plan will fall apart. Forge Chief is there to help your early board presence while offering some mana refund once the unit strikes – it is often effectively free and does not slow down your Daring Poro gameplan.

Sometimes, you might find yourself in scenarios where you have no Daring Poros in hand, and this is where Time Trick or Station Archivist might come in handy. You can either fish for a Daring Poro or a Poro Cannon, both will get your gameplan back on track.

But Station Archivist isn’t only for the Poro Cannon pull, the card offers much more utility! You’re usually holding on to the Station Archivist until turns 5/6, you’ll need to save spell mana in order to play it. You’ll mainly look for an Iceborn Legacy, make sure to have a Daring Poro ready to receive buff as the spell you’ll pull from Station Archivist is fleeting.

Poro Snax is another pull you can get from Station Archivist. Keep in mind Station Archivist is showing the top 5 cards in your deck, meaning it will give you information on what you will draw in your upcoming turns.

Stress Testing is an amazing addition to the deck, it synergizes with Zaunite Urchin and Poro Cannon. It can also be a choice to pick if you play Station Archivist. Fleeting cards are discarded at the end of your turn – meaning Stress Testing will trigger its discard effect, drawing you another Fleeting card in its place at the start of your following turn.

Once you buff up the stats of your Elusive Poros, they will turn into a threatening force that will close out the game, and thanks to cards like Poro Cannon and Iterative Improvement, it will be a difficult task for your opponent to through all of them.


Techs and Options

  • Mystic Shot: this can be a tool to remove pesky units that advance your opponent’s win condition or a burn card to deal the last remaining points of damage you need to win the game. You can cut an Augmented Experimenter, a Poro Herder, and a Stress Testing for 3 Mystic Shots.
  • Troll Chant: Protection card to keep your Poros alive – the 2 health can come in handy when your opponent is going for a removal damage spell, while the -2 attack debuff on an opponent’s unit is usually if you’re trying to keep a Poro alive when attacking/blocking (good in the mirror). You can cut Forge Chief, a Three Sisters, and a Poro Herder for Troll Chant.

General Tips

  • Make sure your Daring Poros are safe early game.
    You want to keep your Daring Poros safe from cheap removal tools – losing a Daring Poro early on can end up costing you a lot of pressure on the board once your start buffing them up with Poro Snax and Iceborn Legacy.
  • Station Archivist is one of the best cards in the deck.
    The ability to create a Fleeting copy of a spell allows for additional buffs on your Daring Poros earlier with either Poro Snax or Iceborn Legacy. At the same time, it can provide an additional card draw if you go for a Stress Testing pick.
    You want to hold on to Station Archivist until you have enough mana to play the Fleeting Iceborn Legacy in case it pops up as one of the choices.
  • Poro Herder is not always an early keep.
    Although it might seem like a good early card keep, Poro Herder requires you to Behold a Poro in order to draw another one. In this list, Poro Herder will always draw you a Daring Poro but if you don’t behold one, Poro Herder is rendered useless. It’s better to look for a Daring Poro or Poro Cannon in the mulligan phase.

Matchups

Mulligan for: Daring Poro, Poro Cannon, Iceborn Legacy, Station Archivist

  • Don’t play your Daring Poros early game until you have a Poro Snax or Iceborn Legacy to buff up their stats, you don’t want to lose one of your Elusive units to a Vile Feast.
  • Keep in mind that Poro Snax is not enough to keep your Daring Poros out of range from Avalanche or Blighted Ravine.
  • It’ll be extremely hard for your opponent to shut down a wide board of buffed-up Elusive Poros. Their best shot is The Ruination, and since your Daring Poros cost only 1 mana, you can play them all a turn earlier and set up an Iceborn Legacy burst play for an open attack.
  • Three Sisters into Flash Freeze is a good answer for an Atrocity play your opponent might attempt to set up on their Trundle or Tryndamere.
  • Watch out for The Box when setting up all your Daring Poros, make sure you can keep them out of the damage range.

Mulligan for: Forge Chief, Daring Poro, Poro Cannon, Iceborn Legacy

  • You need to block and kill Twisted Catalyzer on its first attack to deny additional Darkness buffs. Forge Chief, Poro Herder, and Zaunite Urchin can act as blockers.
  • You don’t have methods to remove Veigar and Senna so the goal is to end the game before Veigar levels up and ends the game with Darkness on your Nexus.
  • Your opponent has the ability to play a Fast-speed The Ruination if Senna is on the board. To play around it you can Entomb Senna using Three Sisters on your defensive turn, which will allow you to set up for an open lethal attack.
  • Watch out for Vile Feast early game that could kill off a 1|1 Daring Poro.
  • Your opponent can prolong the game with cards like Stress Defense or Minimorph.
  • Ixtali Sentinel is not something you want to see, not only does she create a Darkness, she will heal your opponent’s Nexus with the Lifesteal keyword. But with a wide board of Elusive Poros, the healing in most cases won’t be enough to keep your opponent alive.

Mulligan for: Forge Chief, Daring Poro, Poro Cannon, Iceborn Legacy

  • Don’t get your Daring Poros killed by Vile Feast early on. Wait until you can buff them with Poro Snax or Iceborn Legacy.
  • An important difference between Iceborn Poros and Iceborn Spiders is that you can block your opponent’s Spiderlings if need be whereas your Daring Poros are Elusive and can attack freely without being blocked.
  • The Howling Abyss is a secondary win condition for your opponent but playing it out costs a lot of tempo. Take advantage of that to set up for a strong attack and close out the game.

Mulligan for: Daring Poro, Station Archivist, Iceborn Legacy

  • This matchup comes down to who has the better statted Daring Poros and can go wide on the board with them.
  • Iceborn Legacy and Station Archivist are two of the most important cards for this matchup.
  • Try and take value trades, use Three Sisters to keep your Daring Poros alive.
  • If you find yourself in a spot where you don’t have a Daring Poro on the board or in hand you can always play Iterative Improvement on your opponent’s Daring Poro.
  • Outside of Mystic Shot there isn’t really much burn threat, so winning the board presence will be the primary goal.

Mulligan for: Forge Chief, Daring Poro, Poro Cannon, Iceborn Legacy

  • Your opponent has two methods to win the game: remove your Daring Poros early on and dominate the board or close out the game before you do with their Overwhelm units.
  • They can deal with your Elusive units with cards like Single Combat, Sharpsight, Blinded Mystic, and Concerted Strike.
  • Cataclysm or Golden Aegis can threaten to close out the game, Three Sisters into Flash Freeze will shut down an Overwhelm unit and buy you additional time to close out the game.
  • Eventually your opponent will run out of resources to deal with all your Daring Poros, once their stats are higher late game you’ll be able to end the game.
  • A leveled-up Pantheon can shut your gameplan down, the random keywords he’ll gain could be Elusive and Lifesteal, a combination of two Keywords you don’t really want to see. Keep in mind Flash Freeze can be an answer for Pantheon if he doesn’t have a Spellshield.

Mulligan for: Forge Chief, Daring Poro, Poro Cannon, Zaunite Urchin, Iceborn Legacy

  • You are up against an aggressive deck that will close out the game before you set up your own gameplan. Fearsome units like Elise, Precious Pet, and Arachnoid Horror are difficult for you to block.
  • You have to adapt your playstyle to preserve your health, meaning you might find yourself in scenarios where sacrificing a couple of Daring Poros is important to stay in the game.
  • Iterative Improvement can be played on either Poro Herder, Zaunite Urchin, or Forge Chief to create a Fearsome blocker.
  • Watch out from Frenzied Skitterer on your opponent’s attack turn, it can shut down your Fearsome blockers.
  • Noxian Fervor and Decimate are your opponent’s burn spells. Your deck does not run any healing or deny cards so you won’t have answers for the burn plan. You can add Mystic Shot in the deck to have a chance at interrupting a Noxian Fervor.

Mulligan for: Forge Chief, Daring Poro, Poro Cannon, Iceborn Legacy

  • Ahri Kennen has Elusive units like Dancing Droplet and The Mourned to block your early Daring Poros. Keep Poros alive until you can buff them up, forcing your opponent to commit additional resources to remove them.
  • They can slow down your attacking Poros with cards like Homecoming and Concussive Palm. On the bright side, Daring Poros cost only 1 mana, so having them Recalled doesn’t set you back on board presence.
  • Save Three Sisters until your opponent tries to go for a lethal attack with a leveled-up Ahri, once they commit spells like Twin Disciplines or The Absolver on Ahri, you can pick Flash Freeze from Three Sisters and shut down Ahri’s attack.
  • Although your opponent’s deck doesn’t run any burn cards, it is wise to stay above 2 health, if they have a Kennen on board and another in hand, they will be able to play Lightning Rush to close out the game.

Mulligan for: Forge Chief, Daring Poro, Poro Cannon, Iceborn Legacy

  • The Flight and Lunari Shadestalker are two bothersome Elusive units that will slow down your Daring Poros.
  • Watch out for Diana, she can pick off your Daring Poros especially since after the recent buff she can receive her Challenger keyword even when already on the board.
  • A leveled-up Nocturne can threaten to end the game, the Fearsome keyword he gives to all attacking units along with lowering the Power of your own units will make it difficult for you to survive the game.
  • Keep in mind Nightfall deck is an aggressive deck, it will be difficult for you to set up your gameplan, a 5 mana Iceborn Legacy is a huge commitment and will set you back on tempo if you can’t swarm the board with Daring Poros.
  • Some lists run Moonlight Affliction, which will render two of your Daring Poros useless for a turn.

Closing Words

Iceborn Poros is a great pick if you’re trying to beat control decks, especially Shadow Isles control decks. The deck can have an explosive start, where your opponent will literally have no answers to your buffed-up Daring Poros.

Although some games you’ll find yourself ending games as Fast turn 5 or 6, there are scenarios where you just can’t set up your game plan, at the end of the day it falls under the Combo category, and if you can’t find all the pieces, the deck will crumble.

Iceborn Poros is definitely still one of the strongest decks in the meta, but it’s extremely easy to target and counter it. Especially in a tournament setup, the deck doesn’t have a high win rate at the moment, mainly because the top decks in the meta like Kennen Ahri and Pantheon Demacia can hold their ground against the deck.

Hopefully, you enjoyed the guide, if you wish to see more of my content, follow me on Twitter.

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Sorry

My name is Alaa, better known as Sorry or TricksterSorry. Legends of Runeterra competitive player, I enjoy playing tournaments and competing against top players.

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