Legends of Runeterra The Rising Tides Set Constructed Review: Bilgewater
It is finally here! The Rising Tides expansion for Legends of Runeterra brings with it over 120 brand new cards along with an entirely new region in the form of Bilgewater. We know that a whole set of cards entering the mix at once can be a bit overwhelming. As such, this Constructed Review series of articles aims to provide you with a baseline to gauge which cards you should be spending your valuable wildcards on.
- 5.0: Cards that are extremely powerful and belong in any deck of their respective region regardless of synergy. (Hecarim before the nerf)
- 4.0: Meta staples. These are cards that are usually auto-includes in any deck(s) that can support them but don’t need to be built around. (Zed, Karma, Deny, etc.)
- 3.5: Flexible, but not extremely powerful. These are cards that fit well into multiple archetypes but need some amount of support in order to make the cut. (Stand Alone, Get Excited, Will of Ionia)
- 3.0: Archetype staples. Cards in this category are more niche than their 3.5 counterparts but are necessary for their respective archetypes. (Corina Veraza, Anivia, Boomcrew Rookie)
- 2.5: Role-player in some decks. These are cards that are important for the deck(s) they are in and do not have many viable counterparts, but aren’t very flexible. (The Ruination, Laurent Protege)
- 2.0: Niche card. These are cards that are typically not powerful enough to be played regularly but may be brought into lists to counter specific meta decks. This category also includes cards that may not have a fleshed-out archetype just yet. (Ren Shadowblade, Professor Von Yipp, Purify)
- 1.0: Rarely sees play. (Unstable Voltician, Basilisk Rider)
With our rating scale out of the way, let’s jump into the brand new Bilgewater cards!
Abyssal Eye – 3.0
Abyssal Eye is going to be an important character in any deck looking to build around the Deep keyword. Despite a relatively weak statline for the cost, this Sea Monster plays nicely with Nautilus and helps protect against Elusive units. The card draw on Nexus Strike aides in thinning the deck and turning Deep online. Once that is achieved, this one-eyed Sea Monster becomes a 5-mana 6|6 Elusive that continues to draw cards. That said, Abyssal Eye is unlikely to make the cut in a deck that isn’t looking to go Deep as there are better Elusive options than a 5-mana 3|3.
Black Market Merchant – 3.0
Annoying though he may be, Black Water Merchant is not likely to see play in every Bilgewater deck. At 2-mana for a 2|2 his statline isn’t great and unless you are building your deck specifically to steal your opponent’s cards, his static ability isn’t like to be effective. Triggering Plunder on turn 2 while also having the mana to play him is not impossible, but likely won’t happen frequently. But in decks that can make it happen and are looking to build around the ability to steal cards from your opponent’s deck, Black Market Merchant is likely to make the cut 9 out of 10 times.
Brash Gambler – 2.0
Zaunite Urchin has grown up! Brash Gambler is a powerful 4-drop. At 4|5, she can trade favorably with nearly every unit at that price point. She seems likely to make the cut in certain aggro strategies that are looking to make use of the discard mechanic. Drawing 2 on Attack is powerful, even if the cards are Fleeting. You will just want to make sure that you are in the position to use those cards should you need to. Despite what she has going for her, Brash Gambler currently doesn’t seem to have an archetype where she fully belongs. That may change soon though!
Bubble Bear – 1.0
Legends of Runeterra’s first-ever defense-oriented Elusive unit comes in the form of Bubble Bear. It can obviously block for days and its Attune keyword nets you one spell mana when you play it. Perhaps if the Elusive strategies remain a dominating force in the meta we will see Bubble Bear teched into decks to shore up the early game against those strategies. Even, then I do not expect it see play.
Chum The Waters // Longtooth – 2.0
Vulnerable is a powerful keyword as it allows you to Challenge opposing units, even when you don’t have any Challenger units. Chum The Waters not only makes an enemy unit Vulnerable, but also provides you a powerful 5|1 unit with which to Challenge that enemy. That prevents Chum The Waters from being a dead spell when you have an empty board. At 4-mana and Slow speed, Chum The Waters is not without its issues. There are multiple ways to interact with and break up what this spell is attempting to do. Longtooth’s low health makes him extremely vulnerable to removal such as Vile Feast and all of the new 1 damage spells floating around the shores of Bilgewater.
Citrus Courier – 4.0
Bilgewater’s version of Tianna Crownguard comes at a discount and though he doesn’t share her Tough keyword or her statline, he makes up for it by healing the board if you have Plundered. Despite being weaker stat-wise than his Demacian counterpart, an additional option for Rally decks is always promising and his heal ability is remarkably powerful. With Citrus Courier in hand you can attack into some defenders, trigger Plunder, then heal your board and swing in again. If you happened to have stockpiled some spell mana, you could even drop a Relentless Pursuit for good measure. Citrus Courier is bound to find a home in multiple strategies, but I expect to see him prominently in Scout-based strategies looking to maximize the number of attacks per turn.
Coral Creatures – 2.0
Its statline is below par for a lot of 2-drops in the game though its abilities couple together to synergize nicely. By Attuning, Coral Creatures ensures that you can play it on curve and cast the spell it generates in the same turn. That said, it will only see play in specific decks and isn’t powerful enough on its own to stand up against most other 2-drops.
Crackshot Corsair – 2.5
Crakshot Corsair is basically just here to watch your other units attack. Unfortunately her skill does not trigger for every ally she sees attacking, so she’ll only be dealing 1 damage to the Nexus per attack regardless of the number of attackers. She can chip in for damage without attacking and anyone who has played Legion Saboteur knows the value of getting extra damage in passed blockers. The Corsair isn’t exceptionally powerful but may find a home in multiple strategies that want to trigger Plunder or deal damage every round (even when the opponent can block). She also pairs nicely with Scout cards and at 1-mana she likely won’t take the spot of anything exceptionally important in those decks.
Devourer of the Depths – 3.0
Another Sea Monster to add to the Deep arsenal, Devourer of the Depths is a solid body with an excellent Play skill. A 4|4 statline allows the Devourer to eat anything that has been brought to 3 or less health before you are Deep and nearly every other creature once you are. If you are looking to build a Deep deck, run Devourer of the Depths.
Double Trouble – 1.0
It might net you a card, but you’re paying extra for it. At Slow speed Double Trouble can be interacted with (though it’s unlikely anyone will ever want to stop one of these from resolving) with relative ease. While some cards that involve variance, such as Remembrance, are quite powerful Double Trouble is not. There are currently 34 potential 1-drops you could get off of this card so planning around the outcome is virtually impossible.
Double Up – 1.0
I want Double Up to be good, but it doesn’t seem to make it. A 6-mana deal 2 is not a card that any deck wants to play and the potential to deal 4 to the enemy nexus isn’t a big enough incentive for me to want this card in my hand. In the early game Double up is going to feel terrible sitting in your hand and in the late game Double Up is unlikely to actually kill much. It may be good against “go-wide” strategies for decks that want to take advantage of the multiple cards that care about dealing noncombat damage. Otherwise, there are better options.
Dreadway Deckhand – 3.0
A 2|2 statline is about the average rate for a 2-mana follower. Dreadway Deckhand fits perfectly into Gangplank Powder Keg strategies. Powder Keg is looking to be a powerful aggressive archetype and I would be surprised to find any of those lists without Dreadway Deckhand.
Dreg Dredgers – 3.0
This little guy is a flexible 1-drop that is likely to see play in both Deep and Toss strategies. Nautilus and Maokai will both appreciate the ability to Toss cards early and Toss 3 is no small amount for one card. Dreg Dredgers also sticks around after Tossing, providing those decks with some legs to stand on in the early game.
Fizz – 4.0
It’s too early to claim that Fizz is overpowered, but in time he might just become the most powerful champion from The Rising Tides. His ability to avoid being targeted makes dealing with him a nightmare and any deck that is playing him will be able to capitalize on his Elusive nature. His level-up condition also makes him a perfect target for buff spells like Stand Alone and Back to Back. He is easy to level up and when he is, he continues to pump out Longtooths for as long as he is around. At the moment there has yet to be a “meta-breaking” build for Fizz, but if not this season expect to see Fizz dominating tier lists at some point.
Gangplank – 4.0
Gangplank is already proving to be a powerhouse in the new meta. A 5|5 for 5-mana with Overwhelm is nothing to sneeze at and he generates a Powder Keg when he’s summoned as well. When he levels up you’ll get a Powder Keg every round. While he can’t level up before round 5, his support cards make it rather easy to level him more frequently than not. Level 2 Gangplank continues to pester the opponent by pinging the board whenever he attacks and continuing to generate Powder Kegs for good measure. Gangplank lists are likely to be quite aggressive and will match well into midrange and control type strategies.
Golden Narwhal – 1.0
The Narwhal is a 3-mana 2|4 with Elusive… and Vulnerable. While its statline is rather defensive, having Vulnerable as a native keyword is rather unfortunate. Its Elusive keyword makes it so that the Narwhal can at least attack unimpeded, but I don’t expect it will survive long, if it ever makes the cut.
Hired Gun – 3.0
No other card in the game has this ability so expect Hired Gun to see play. Giving the opponent’s strongest unit Vulnerable is a powerful effect and can allow you to set up profitable attacks even into troubling boardstates. Her statline is also decent at 2|3 for 2-mana.
Hunting Fleet – 1.0
Stalking Wolf is a 2-mana 3|2 with Challenger that summons a 1|1 for your opponent. Okay, so Hunting Fleet isn’t Stalking Wolf but it is rather similar. Golden Narwhal isn’t the biggest issue in the world (even with the change to full boardstates) and Hunting Fleet, or a number of other units can quickly remove it. At worst, Hunting Fleet is a 5-mana 7|5 which is an above-rate statline. I’m not sure that it immediately fits into any particular decks, but it certainly isn’t a bad card. That said, it doesn’t seem to have a home in constructed at the moment.
Island Navigator – 2.5
Island Navigator’s randomness has the same odds to generate a specific follower as Double Trouble, but providing that unit with Scout is not worthless. The strength of other Scout followers will likely be the determining factor in whether or not Island Navigator will see much play. Her statline isn’t great and her summon effect isn’t incredible, so I wouldn’t waste my rare wildcards on her just yet.
Jagged Butcher – 3.0
A 1-mana 2|2 is great as the Butcher trades with nearly every 1-drop in the game and provide a solid start for aggressive strategies. If you can reach the Plunder condition before playing him he’s a 1-mana 3|3 which is great value.
Jagged Taskmaster – 2.5
While Jagged Taskmaster has a strong statline for her cost, her Plunder ability needs to built around. In a Professor Von Yipp or a Poro strategy, she is likely going to make the cut. That said, with all that Rising Tides has going on… good stats just aren’t enough right now. If you’re building around 1-drops, play Jagged Taskmaster. If you’re not, don’t.
Jailbreak – 1.0
The only reason to play a card like this is if you are hoping to reach critical mass on spells. Otherwise, I don’t see any reason to take the gamble on the 34 potential units you could hit with this card. Just play the 1-drop you want Jailbreak to spawn and avoid the trouble.
Jaull Hunters – 2.5
Deep decks are likely to try Jaull Hunters out at least a bit. A 4|1 with Challenger for 3-mana is solid for trading with pesky units on the opponent’s board and it helps shore up the early game for these decks which tend to struggle there. 1 health does make it a bit risky though, as it can be picked off quite easily. Jaull Hunters is mostly going to serve as extra copies of Sea Monsters, but the body it leaves behind isn’t worthless.
Jettison – 2.0
Jettison is a good card for Toss and/or Deep strategies, but useless for anything else. Play it in those decks and avoid it elsewhere.
Lure of the Depths – 2.5
A 3-mana Burst spell that replaces itself and makes your Sea Monsters cheaper is solid… if you’re playing Sea Monsters in the first place. Otherwise, Lure of the Depths is useless. It’s not a clear decision if this is an auto-include in Deep decks because 3-mana is a bit steep when your curve is already leaning on the higher side. That said, it does lower your curve for the rest of the game, which is a big boon in this deck. It isn’t a bad inclusion and is likely to see play in the Deep decks floating around.
Make It Rain – 3.5
With all of the cards in this expansion that care about dealing either noncombat damage or hitting the Nexus, Make It Rain is bound to see play. It deals with Spiders incredibly nicely and can hit face as well. It would obviously be better if the targets could be selected, but in this case the randomness is not a dealbreaker. Swain, Miss Fortune, Gangplank, and Sejuani (just to name a few) will almost certainly auto-include this card if they are able to pair with this region.
Mind Meld – 1.0
Mind Meld is the type of situational card that rarely sees play, but you will remember every time you lose to it. At Slow speed and 8-mana, it is an extremely difficult spell to cast successfully but it is a solid finisher for decks that are focusing on casting spells. Lee Sin/Twisted Fate strategies are likely to dabble with this spell, but be sure to keep Deny backup so your 8-mana play doesn’t waste your turn. It will be important to maintain a board presence prior to casting Mind Meld or it will just sit dead in your hand.
Miss Fortune – 4.0
As with Fizz I am hesitant to call her overpowered this early in the meta, but Miss Fortune is a powerhouse. She barrages the opponent (similarly to leveled up Gangplank) when allies attack, so she doesn’t need to get in harm’s way. At 3-mana she can come down early enough to actually see you attack 4 times and if she is built into a Scout deck, that shouldn’t be too difficult. After Miss Fortune levels up she continues to barrage the opponent but does so 3 times. Even before she levels up, she is a solid include alongside the likes of Powder Kegs and any deck looking to Plunder reliably. Expect to see her played with Gangplank frequently to abuse these synergies. On top of all that, her signature spell is Make It Rain.
Monkey Idol // Powder Monkey – 2.0
This is only a useful card in decks that are looking to abuse Powder Kegs, Plunder triggers or deal damage to their own units (like the Crimson crew). Powder Monkey is just a token and is a smaller version of Legion Grenadier, but the Idol generates two of them minimum (without interaction). The Idol is Immobile as well, so it cannot attack or block. I think in general the decks that want an effect like this are better off just making Powder Kegs instead.
More Powder – 2.5
The Gangplank deck probably wants to be playing every card it can to generate more Powder Kegs. For 2-mana even the Slow speed isn’t much of a drawback and it won’t trigger any Powder Kegs you already have on the board. This is likely to be a role-player in the Powder Keg decks.
Mystifying Magician – 2.0
This is a unique effect so it’s yet another card that might see play by default. It might be meme-tier, but at the very least it nets you value if you play it right. Converting anything cheaper than a 5-drop nets you some value and you get this 2|2 body as well.
Nautilus – 4.0
If you want to go Deep, you are playing Nautilus. If you are playing Nautilus, you want to go Deep. At 7-mana Nautilus isn’t going to do a whole lot of blocking, but when he levels up he cuts the cost of nearly your entire deck down significantly. Not to mention he’s a massive 13|13 with Tough and Fearsome. He also copies all of your Tossed Sea Monsters back into your deck when he levels up so he increases your average topdeck value nicely.
Parrrley – 2.5
This is everything that Double Up wants to be. It’s only 1-mana so it can be played early and it still deals with pesky X|1 units while chipping some damage in at the enemy Nexus as well. Parrrley will get you that much closer to leveling Gangplank before he can be played and isn’t going to cost you an arm and a leg only to get Denied or have the targeted unit get buffed out of range.
Petty Officer – 2.0
While I appreciate that you are given the choice of summoning the 1 cost or a Powder Keg I think the Keg is going to be what this guy is most often played for. Your Powder Keg/Gangplank/Miss Fortune “smack face” deck will probably be playing a couple copies of the Officer. His aggressive statline and ability to produce Keg stacks makes him useful in strategies looking to abuse that.
Pick A Card – 3.5
The amount of sheer card advantage that Rising Tides has injected into the game is absurd. A 3-mana Burst spell that replaces your worst card in hand for 3 new cards at the start of the next round… Pick a card indeed. Not only does this card have the potential to generate massive card advantage, but there are plenty of new archetypes that heavily rely upon casting a critical mass of spells or drawing a lot of cards (Fizz, Twisted Fate, and Lee Sin to name a few). Any pre-existing control deck is going to appreciate the ability to draw extra cards as well. I’m looking at you Heimer. Keep in mind, however, that Fleeting is a real drawback. You are more likely to see Pick A Card serving as card selection more so than traditional card advantage.
Pilfered Goods – 3.5
Pilfered Goods looks like a great card for the Thief style of deck. It works well with Black Market Merchant and is sure to annoy your opponents as well. You are relying on the cards your opponent is playing in their deck though. Obviously, drawing cards that don’t help you at all is just a liability. While it’s not exactly “2-mana draw 2,” it does come quite close. Make sure you can trigger Plunder and you are gaining excellent value. Pilfered Goods is going to be a mainstay in multiple archetypes this season.
Playful Trickster – 2.0
It is likely not correct to compare cards across region borders, but Playful Trickster is about as close to Relentless Pursuit as a different card can get. It does cost 1 more mana, but it can be used to save an ally in combat (so long as you’re the attacker) which could be vital to securing or maintaining a lead. After you have saved your ally, you Rally and get back in the red zone for another attack. The only real drawback of Playful Trickster is that you do have to remove the ally from combat in order to Rally. If the targeted ally dies or is otherwise removed from the board, you’re not going to get that attack token.
Plunder Poro – 1.0/3.0
Heart of the Fluft welcomes another Poro to the herd and this one grants two keywords in one 1-mana card! If the Poro deck is able to break into the meta, you better believe this little guy will be involved.
Pocket Aces – 2.5
Another tempo-based spell, this is a nice little buff spell that benefits from additional card draw and aides the “spells matter” strategies nicely. This is surely an auto-include in Lee Sin decks that are looking to dip into Bilgewater. 3-mana is perhaps a bit expensive for +2|+1, but Pocket Aces is frequently going to cost only 2-mana due to the other support cards you can make use of. Also, in Legends of Runeterra terminology Grant means that its effect is permanent. So any unit you are targeting with Pocket Aces will have the +2|+1 permanently.
Pool Shark – 2.5
This is a solid 1-drop for Twisted Fate decks. The fact that you draw the extra card next round is huge because it lets you play Pool Shark on curve without wasting the Fleeting card. Expect to see this guy in Twisted Fate or Lee Sin lists.
Prowling Cutthroat – 2.5
Another solid little 1-drop here in Bilgewater. With some help from the other 1-drop buffs in Rising Tides, this could get quite a bit bigger than a 1|1. Fearsome and Elusive is a nasty combo against the Elusive decks. She’ll see play in some decks though I expect Elusives doesn’t need the help at the 1-drop slot and other decks that don’t care much about 1-drops specifically may not find enough synergy here.
Razorscale Hunter – 2.0
One of the better Scout units I have seen in Bilgewater, Razorscale Hunter is going to act like a removal spell as it can grant Vulnerable to anything that the Hunter can kill in combat. By itself, it can open the way for other attackers and with other Scouts it can set up some big swing rounds. Unfortunately, Razorscale Hunter competes with Quinn and Swiftwing Lancer in Scout decks so he probably won’t see a ton of play there.
Riptide – 3.0
Without Nautilus on the board this is arguably a worse Steel Tempest, but it isn’t limited to attacking units. 4-mana to Stun an enemy is nothing incredible, but 4-mana to shuffle a unit back in the enemy deck can be devastating to your opponent. At Fast speed, this can even be used to blank opposing buffs or combat tricks such as Whirling Death. Its power does hinge on whether or not you have a Nautilus in play though, so this is likely to only see much play in the Deep decks.
Riptide Rex – 3.5
Despite being an 8-mana follower, Riptide Rex is incredible. Dealing 2 damage to random units 7 times can be back-breaking (especially against most go-wide strategies where followers tend to have lower health stats). He even has the built-in insurance of hitting the Nexus if the Barraged unit is killed or otherwise removed from the board. All of that and Riptide Rex is still a 7|4 body!
Salvage – 4.0
Salvage is one of the few Toss cards that may see play in a non-Toss deck. Since Salvage not only Tosses cards, but draws them as well, it is a potentially beneficial addition to any decks that are hoping to increase their card draw. In the Deep decks, where Treasures abound, Salvage is almost certainly an auto-include as it can function as a 4-mana Draw 4.
Scrapshot – 2.0
A 7-mana Fast spell that Tosses 3 and deals 7 damage to a unit. This card is a bit difficult to evaluate because the decks that care about Tossing, likely don’t care about the damage (and have better ways to Toss); and the decks that care about the damage probably don’t want to be Tossing cards or spending 7 mana on an effect like this. All told, this is likely going to serve as Bilgewater’s Vengeance and will probably see play in any Bilgewater list that needs an effect of that nature.
Shellshocker – 2.0
2|1 is on par for a 1-drop and Attune essentially lets Shellshocker pay for itself if you are going to be casting any spells.
Sheriff Lariette Rose – 3.0
In the right deck, Lariette is awesome! Granting all enemies Vulnerable is massive and her stats are already on par for a 6-mana follower. Honestly I’m surprised she doesn’t cost 7 or 8 mana. You will want to make sure that you are playing units in your deck that will be able to make use of Vulnerable, but that’s the only help she needs.
Shipwreck Hoarder – 3.0
Here is your big Deep payoff (besides Nautilus himself). A 7-mana 7|5 is already fine but Shipwreck Hoarder Tosses 2 and then shuffles 2 Treasures into your deck. The ordering here is important because he Tosses before the Treasures get added. Unfortunately, this prevents you from Tossing the Treasures that it generates which would have incredible card advantage potential. Shipwreck Hoarders stack together nicely due to the Toss mechanic and Treasure generation. And if you manage to have a leveled up Nautilus in play, this monster is only a 3-drop…
Sleight of Hand – 2.5
This is a rather unique effect, but it is hindered by the fact that Plunder needs to be enabled. Without Plunder, this card literally does nothing. When you actually are able to use the card though you do steal a card from your opponent’s hand, which is more or less a 2-for-1 as they are down a card and you come out even on the exchange. Be sure to play this in a deck that can reliably enable Plunder. If you can, it is a useful enough effect that you don’t need to put many synergies into the theft aspect of the card for it to be good.
Slippery Waverider – 3.0
The Elusive decks now have another region to dip their feet into and Slippery Waverider is a decent choice. 5-mana for a 4|4 follower that Attunes is a good rate.
Slotbot – 2.5
Slotbot has an interesting effect that feeds on card draw. Without having seen it in play, I would assume that it randomly splits its health into both attack and health. If you can draw at least an extra card each round Slotbot seems like a solid addition to a deck. Repeated card draw can potentially keep it alive for the entire game as it will effectively heal with every card drawn if it survives the round.
Smooth Soloist – 2.0
Reducing the cost of allies in your deck is a powerful ability. Smooth Soloist reduces their cost by 2 and also hits allies in hand. You do need to ensure you activate Plunder, but that doesn’t seem to be difficult in Rising Tides. A 3|4 Elusive is a solid body that would stand up to Elusive decks nicely if it didn’t cost 7-mana. The question is whether or not the cost reduction will matter by turn 7. Given the slower nature of LoR matches, I would say that it is likely to make a difference but it comes too late to be game breaking. There is likely a combo-deck that will look to abuse this card, but it hasn’t surfaced just yet.
Strong-Arm – 2.5
Another Slow spell that requires Plunder is activated for it to do anything at all. Removing a Follower in play and putting into your hand is a powerful effect, but at 6-mana and Slow speed I fear it is too clunky to be very effective. When you can enable Plunder (which frankly doesn’t seem difficult), Strong-Arm is a removal spell that replaces itself. There are plenty of situations where Strong-Arm will be a lifesaver.
The Beast Below – 3.0
When it was spoiled, I originally thought that while The Beast Below is powerful because of its strong statline and Deep keyword. The lack of Overwhelm or summon effects seemed to make it a bit lackluster. After seeing it in play a few times and rethinking it a bit, it seems that The Beast Below is a fine card in Deep lists. If Deep is active, it is big enough to pose a threat to opponents and is free if you have Nautilus on the board. Otherwise, it is a decent early-mid game follower to have.
The Dreadway – 2.5
The champion tutor cards are interesting and add a new dynamic to the game. A 4|8 Fearsome that doubles all damage dealt by allies is powerful and satisfies the desire for a 9-mana card to end the game swiftly after being played. The double damage should apply to any damage being dealt by allies including effects and normal combat damage. If you can swing it, Ledros and The Dreadway combo for a 2-card OTK. The Dreadway also draws you Gangplank so it replaces itself.
The Syren – 2.5
A 3|7 Scout is great because even in decks that aren’t focusing on Scout it can get in without risking death. 3 attack is also enough to deal with a decent number of units. She does draw Miss Fortune so has the same sense replacement effect as The Dreadway. 7-mana is a bit heavy, especially if you haven’t already leveled Miss Fortune up, but any deck that is running The Syren is going to be able to take advantage of the triggered ability it has.
Twisted Fate – 4.0
When he was spoiled I was underwhelmed by Twisted Fate. His level up condition seemed too hard to hit and at 2|2 he is quite easy to deal with. That said, after seeing some decks play him it is clear that he is powerful. The value that can be generated with his support cards is remarkable and his Destiny Cards provide incredible flexibility. He is able to pair well with Miss Fortune, Lee Sin, Ezreal, Heimerdinger, and more. Just make sure to play around removal with him whenever possible and you will be sure to see him put in work.
Warning Shot – 1.0
A 0-mana deal 1 to the Nexus isn’t likely to make the cut in most strategies, but some Gangplank decks might find it useful. It doesn’t cost mana, but taking up a slot in your deck is a real cost that needs to be considered. Look to get similar effects from followers that will persist or more powerful spells.
Ye Been Warned – 2.5
Giving enemies Vulnerable is going to be quite powerful. At 1-mana this spell doesn’t slow you down very much. Unfortunately, it only provides Vulnerable for one round, so you will want to ensure that you are able to capitalize on Ye Been Warned the turn that it is played. Plus, if you are able to kill the Vulnerable unit, this card replaces itself.
Yordle Grifter – 3.5
Yordle Grifter is a bit below rate, but is Bilgewater’s Allegiance follower. He’s not quite as powerful as Vanguard Bannerman into a big board for instance, but the ability to replace itself and generate a free way to trigger plunder makes him a powerful unit. Unlike most other Allegiance units, Yordle Grifter also has an effect that is good even without the Allegiance proc. I expect this guy to see play in many Bilgewater decks.
Zap Sprayfin – 3.5
2|2 Elusive with Attune that draws you a card… for 4-mana. Zap is solid. He gives you back one spell mana for casting him, so you are that much closer to casting the card he draws the turn that he is played. As you are aware by now, I am a big fan of free card draw and the variance here is minimal since you can craft your deck to take full advantage of Sprayfin’s ability.
What Cards Are the Safest to Craft?
There you have it! Every Bilgewater card brought to Legends of Runeterra via the Rising Tides expansion. There are some interesting cards here and I am sure that players will find ways to abuse them beyond what I have mentioned here. As always, I would love to hear your thoughts! As promised, below is a list of my recommendations where you might want to spend your wildcards in this region based on the ratings above and the variety of lists they are currently seeing play in.
Salvage, Make It Rain, Pilfered Goods, Hired Gun
Citrus Courier, Yordle Grifter, Black Market Merchant
Zap Sprayfin, Riptide Rex
Miss Fortune, Twisted Fate
Let me know what you think about these new cards in the comments or reach out to me on Twitter @RanikGalfridian. Also, be sure to check back for my reviews on the rest of the Rising Tides cards in each region.