We had a surprise hotfix that targeted the three meta-dominant decks, Aatrox Vayne, Seraphine Ezreal (BC), and Gwen Katarina with a few nerfs.
Both Aatrox Vayne and Ezreal Seraphine (BC) have been struggling on the ranked ladder since the nerfs were released. As for Gwen Katarina, the deck only received a slap on the wrist, and it’s still holding up well so far.
Since the hotfix went live on the 6th of January, we still have little data to work with. The meta has yet to settle as players continue experimenting with different decks on the ladder. A lot of decks are seeing more play with Aatrox out of the picture, especially different Jinx archetypes.
Most Successful Archetypes
Aatrox Vayne, Katarina Gwen, and Ezreal Seraphine (BC) fall out of Tier 1. A lot of decks have been putting up good win rates over the past couple of days. Jinx Lulu was already performing well before the hotfix, and it now has even more room to shine.
Remarkably, Ekko Jinx (SH) has been a great performer. I’ll keep an eye on it, as it could hold its spot as a Tier 1 deck.
Tier 2 (Vayne Aatrox, Ezreal Seraphine (BC), Aatrox Kayn, Gangplank Sejuani, Darius Overwhelm, Annie Jhin, Twisted Fate Annie, Irelia Gwen, Seraphine Viktor Aphelios, Norra Veigar, Garen Jarvan IV, Viktor Seraphine Ryze, Rumble Vayne, Zed Hecarim, Aatrox Kindred, Akshan Varus, Pyke Rek’Sai, Azir Xerath, Fizz Gwen, Heimerdinger Jayce (SI))
The meta feels fresh, but with the top dominant decks receiving nerfs and Quietus dodging any changes, a lot of different Shadow Isles decks have been seeing more play.
The nerf Viego received a while ago has completely shattered the champion’s performance. The Viego mana cost increase exponentially slows down the archetype, which ends up being too slow to keep up with the meta.
It’s been months, and we still haven’t seen Viego make a comeback, even with the increase in popularity of Shadow Isles decks.
On paper, the old Viego deck (Shurima or Ionia) should have a great matchup table as it performs well against decks like Jinx Lulu, Trundle Tryndamere, and Pirates.
Underplayed and Overplayed Archetypes
In the chart below, I’ve plotted win rates versus play rates for 21 decks to demonstrate which archetypes can be seen as the ‘kings’ in the current meta, and which decks can be labeled as ‘overplayed’ or ‘underplayed’.
The Y-Axis represents the win rate whereas the X-Axis represents the play rate.
Meta Kings: Jinx Lulu. The deck already had the potential to dominate the meta. Jinx Lulu had a high win rate but wasn’t a popular ladder choice due to the dominance of Aatrox. Jinx Lulu’s play rate skyrocketed after the Aatrox nerf, and it is now one of the best decks in the meta.
Overplayed: Azir Xerath. The archetype is currently ranked sixth among the most popular decks. However, its win rate remains below 50%, indicating that it is still struggling to keep up with the new meta.
Underplayed: Ekko Jinx (SH) has a high win rate on the ranked ladder, but its play rate is still low compared to other Jinx decks.
From experience, Ekko Jinx (SH) is a difficult deck to pilot, which affects its win rate negatively. The deck’s high win rate across all ranks means it’ll perform much better in the hands of players capable of piloting it efficiently.
Katarina Leona is one of the new decks that showed up on the ranked ladder. It currently has a 61% win rate across all ranks. Szychu took the deck for a test run during his stream and managed to hold an 88% win rate over 17 games.
The aggressive archetype wants to set up early units on the board to squeeze early damage and use Katarina for her rally effect, allowing you to threaten multiple attacks.
Leona and Solary Sunhawk’s stun ability lets you render one of your opponent’s blockers useless. This creates a stronger attack that allows more units to strike the Nexus.
If you’re able to set up both Leona and Rahvun, Daylight’s Spear, you’ll be able to activate Leona’s stun ability multiple times, which might be just enough to end the game on the spot.
Balance Watch: Quietus.
All the cards we talked about in last week’s Meta Report were nerfed except for Quietus. I was surprised that the card managed to dodge any changes, and as expected, it’s extremely popular in the meta right now.
Its ability to shut down champions or high-cost units for only 1 mana can easily change the game’s tempo in your favor.
Most Popular Archetypes
Jinx Lulu already had a high win rate pre-hotfix, but with the dominant decks receiving nerfs, the archetype’s play rate went higher.
It is currently the most popular deck, with a win rate of approximately 59.5% across all ranks and master rank.
Trundle Tryndamere (SI) is the second most-played deck. The archetype has a 54.62% win rate across all ranks.
Surprisingly, the archetype is struggling against Jinx Lulu according to the matchup table, which has a 40/60 matchup. But as we get more data in the upcoming days, and players tweak their lists to beat Jinx Lulu, I expect to see a change in the percentages.
Lurk’s play rate just keeps going up! From top 10 to top 5, and now top 3 most played decks! However, this time around, Lurk broke the 50% win rate curse and has now hit a 52.17% win rate across all ranks.
Pyke Rek’Sai has a good matchup against Trundle Tryndamere (SI) which explains the higher win rate.
The nerf to Fallen Reckoner weakened the deck’s Overwhelm power, but it continues to put in a solid performance on the ladder.
Its win rate has slightly dropped to 53.84% across all ranks compared to last week’s win rate of 56.25%.
The Aatrox deck has a 50.44% win rate across all ranks but drops even more in Master rank, reaching a 48.2% win rate.
This is a huge win rate drop of around 7% to 9% compared to the pre-hotfix win rate.
Zed Hecarim is in the top 5 most-played decks with a 51.27% win rate across all ranks.
The archetype has a bad matchup against a lot of popular decks like Jinx Lulu, Draven Jinx, and Gwen Katarina but destroys decks like Trundle Tryndamere (SI) and Ezreal Seraphine (BC).
It seems we have a winner in the rivalry between Draven Jinx and Lulu Jinx. Lulu Jinx now beats Draven Jinx in both win rate and play rate.
Draven Jinx has a win rate of 56.31% across all ranks.
The nerf to Back Ally Bar took its toll on Ezreal Seraphine (BC). The deck’s win rate dropped to 46.48% across all ranks and 47.3% in Master rank.
It has been losing popularity as well; the deck that once was in the top 3 most-played decks is now in the 9th place and will most likely keep dropping in the upcoming days.
Rumble Vayne is having an existential crisis. The deck gained popularity as an Aatrox counter, and with the Aatrox nerfs, Rumble Vayne has been underperforming.
The Vayne nerf could also play a role in the win rate drop, but the archetype mostly relied on the one Tumble Vayne provided for an additional Rumble attack.
Rumble Vayne has a 50.17% overall win rate and a 49.9% win rate in Master rank.
Miss Fortune Twisted Fate’s win rate keeps rising. The Pirates deck has around 59.5% win rate across all ranks and Master rank.
Gangplank Sejauni seems to position itself well in the new meta. Although its play rate hasn’t gone up, its win rate is currently at 55%.
The Plunder deck beats decks like Pyke Rek’Sai, Mono Shurima, Aatrox Vayne, and Ezreal Seraphine (BC).
It also has an almost even matchup against Trundle Tryndamre (SI), Hecarim Zed, Darius Overwhelm, and Draven Jinx.
Darius Overwhelm’s performance has dropped compared to last week. The deck has a 51.72% win rate across all ranks.
Twisted Fate Swain continues a solid performance, managing to hit a 56% win rate. Its play rate, however, remains low compared to the top of the meta.
TF Swain can beat decks like Gwen Katarina, Pyke Rek’Sai, Hecarim Zed, Jinx Lulu, and Draven Jinx.
Ekko Jinx’s overall win rate increases to 58.36% and 60.4% in Master rank.
The archetype has a great matchup table, beating decks like Jinx Lulu, Trundle Tryndamere (SI), and Pirates.
Heimerdinger Jayce is seeing more play post-hotfix. The deck has a win rate of 55.86% across all ranks and a 57.4% in Master rank.
Fizz Gwen’s win rate is around 52% across all ranks. The archetype is still holding up well, and it seems that it is here to stay for the current patch.
Aatrox and Seraphine falling out of favor have brought more archetypes into the mix, giving us a new meta to experiment with.
We’ll see how things shape up this week. This is it for this week’s Meta Report, I’ll see you at the next one!