Hey folks, Dr. LoR here with an updated meta report. Patch 2.11 was the largest meta-changer since Rising Tides, nerfing and buffing 47 cards and introducing a new expansion at the same time. How’s the high-level ladder meta looking after one week?
- The 651k matches of data for the analysis below come from Mobalytics Meta Stats. The timeframe is July 1-7. (The sample is 35% bigger than I had in my previous meta report. People are definitely playing more this patch!)
- I am relying on Mobalytics’s archetype algorithm, which uses champions and regions to define archetypes. This means that Shyvana Asol is separate from Shyvana Zoe Asol and Renekton Sejuani is different from Renekton Sivir Sejuani. Where appropriate, I manually combined Mobalytics archetypes that show slightly different champion combinations. This mainly affected Predict, Turbo Thralls, Overwhelm, Ashe Noxus, Shurima Nox Aggro, Dragons, and Matron Cithria archetypes.
- I use Bayesian smoothing toward a win rate of 50.4% (which is the average win rate number in this sample of data). It is a technique that allows avoiding statistical flukes for archetypes with less data. If you want to learn more about the concept, check out this explainer.
- I use Herfindahl-Hirschman Index (HHI) to calculate meta diversity. The smaller HHI is – the more diverse is the meta. Read this if you would like to know more about the method.
- I include 95% confidence intervals and margin of error when talking about win rate stats. The interval is represented by two percentages, and we can be 95% sure that the ‘true’ win rate for the deck in question lands somewhere in-between these percentages. Margin of error is a single percentage number – we can be 95% sure that the true win rate of the decks is within +/- of their margins of error.
Most Popular Archetypes
Here are the play rates for the 20 most popular decks in Patch 2.11 so far, sorted by rank. Each of these decks has at least a 0.9% play rate in Plat+. All of these decks together account for approximately 60% of the meta.
- Lurk (Rek’Sai Pyke) is almost as popular as Azir Irelia once were. It’s currently breaking Riot’s own metric of a ‘healthy’ playrate (15%), but I suspect they won’t do anything about it, because this popularity is to be expected for a new deck that also turned out to be quite powerful.
- Predict (Zilean Ekko) is the other notable new archetype, but I suspect its playrate will drop with time. It’s already seeing less and less play at Diamond and above.
- This expansion also inspired several new Freljord P&Z lists featuring Yetis, Poros, and/or Elnuks. Many of these decks are championless or feature a single champion that is not crucial to the gameplan (Sejuani Yetis), so their data is difficult to separate.
- Decks that saw a spike in playrate due to the nerfs and buffs in Patch 2.11 include Pirates (already strong in the last meta, but not that popular), TF Swain, Shen Jarvan, Reputation (LeBlanc Sivir), EZ Karma, and Taric Jarvan.
- The previous ‘big four’ (Azir Irelia, Thresh Nasus, EZ Draven, and TLC) are all being played considerably less. TLC is nearly dead, with a play rate of 0.2%.
- Even with the huge amount of Lurk, meta diversity is in the healthy range, with an HHI of 483 in Plat+ (my last meta report showed an HHI of 557).
Most Successful Archetypes
Below, you can see the win rates for the 25 highest play rate decks, again grouped by rank. I also included 95% confidence intervals (for the explanation of the concept, see Sources and Methodology section), which you can see as thin vertical lines on top of each bar.
- No deck has a win rate significantly above 55% at Plat+. Patch goals accomplished.
- Even after nerfs, Thresh Nasus, Azir Irelia, and EZ Draven remained in the top 10 decks in terms of win rate. This is consistent with Riot’s policy of trying not to ‘kill’ archetypes with balance changes. The same, however, can’t be said about TLC, which currently has a win rate of 48.9% after the Watcher nerf.
- Azir Irelia has become somewhat of a ‘connoisseur’s choice’, showing higher winrates at higher ranks. EZ Karma has a similar pattern. Zoe Lee is best in the hands of Diamond+ players. Most other decks, particularly aggro and midrange decks, follow the much more common pattern: their winrates decrease the higher is the rank that we examine.
Below is a spreadsheet of all the decks with more than 1000 matches in Plat+, sorted by win rate. The table is split into super-columns by rank. Under each super-column, you’ll find a sample size (match), the play rate (PR), win rate (WR), and the win rate adjusted using the Bayesian smoothing technique (bWR).
In addition, the data includes a margin of error (for example, we can be 95% sure that in Plat +, Reputation has a ‘true’ win rate that lands somewhere close to 55.3%, +/- 1.0%). More data available leads to a smaller margin of error.
Most Meta-Defining Archetypes
In the chart below I’ve plotted win rates versus play rates of 25 decks in Platinum+, to demonstrate which archetypes can be seen as the most impactful in the current meta, and which decks can be labeled as ‘over-‘ or ‘underplayed’.
In the graph, you can see dots and vertical error bars (‘whiskers’) for each archetype. These ‘whiskers’ represent the 95% confidence intervals for win rates. The X-axis (play rate) is placed on a logarithmic scale so that Lurk isn’t too far away on the right.
- Predict is obviously the most overplayed deck. I’m not saying it’s impossible for this archetype to be good, but it’s certainly doesn’t perform well for most people. EZ Karma is also hard to pilot and thus can be labeled as overplayed relative to its winrate.
- Good decks that I expect to see more play in the future: Reputation, Thresh Nasus, Zed Sivir, and FTR.
- Championless Howling Abyss SI control decks seem pretty terrible. Getting to play random level 2 champions may be fun, but they don’t close out the game fast enough.
- The Poros/Yetis/Elnuks archetype in the chart above is a mishmash of many different P&Z Freljord champless decks – so don’t rule them out at this point based on this contaminated data. Poros seem promising and Sejuani Yetis seems like a legitimate Tier 2 list. Elnuks, on the other hand, do not perform as well.
We are truly in the Golden Age of LoR.
Lurk is perhaps a bit too commonplace, but it has counterplay and a Tier 2 winrate – so people don’t seem to be complaining.
Otherwise, meta diversity has been really great and it’s unlikely that the game will be solved before the Ruination expansion that is coming with Patch 2.12. It’s an exciting time to be a Legends of Runeterra player.
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