Poppy Ziggs Yordle Burn Deck Guide

Updated for Patch 2.18! This guide by Agigas is dedicated to Yordle Burn - an aggressive deck mixing Bandle City aggro package with Noxus burn.
Yordle Burn created by Agigas • last updated 2 years ago

Hello, Agigas here!

Yordle Burn is one of the best decks in the game when it comes to dealing face damage, and almost all of our cards help with that purpose.

However, this archetype differs from many other burn decks out there as it doesn’t have to prioritize burn damage at the cost of tempo. In Yordle Burn, the ability to dish out consistent burn damage comes alongside powerful bodies.

Inventive Chemist, Legion Rearguard, and Legion Saboteur provide us enough aggressive 1-cost units to pressure the opponent right from the start. Stone Stackers, Imperial Demolitionist, Conchologist, and House Spider allow you to curve out nicely.

We’re not looking to leverage level 2 Ziggs – in fact, he can’t level up in this list at all. Still, his level 1 form offers everything the deck is looking for already – strong stats and a burn ability that additionally makes him hard to block.

Lecturing Yordle provides a deceptively high amount of burn damage by generating Poison Darts, and also grants you the ability to interact with the opponent and remove 1-health blockers.

Bandle City Mayor is a great value card that doubles down as an insanely strong accelerator for your gameplan – you have numerous dual-region units to abuse the mana cost reduction.

Lastly, Poppy is your swarm payoff. If are getting ahead with a large board, she will provide extra stats to completely snowball things out of control. She rarely levels as we have no Rallies or protection spells – though it can happen when the opponent can’t deal with her.

With that massive board flood, the Impact keyword, and units with direct Nexus damage abilities, chances are that our opponent won’t even live past the midgame. To finish games, we have a huge amount of burn damage coming from Noxian Fervor and Decimate.

Pokey Stick can look a bit odd as it doesn’t provide much tempo, but its flexibility and value make it an all-star in Bandle City decks. You can use it to remove a small blocker, finish off a key unit, or just point it directly at the opponent’s Nexus – every small bit of face damage counts, after all!

Techs and Options

Yordle Burn’s list is very tight and we don’t see a lot of variation in this archetype. However, the 1-of House Spider is a flex slot and is regularly replaced by one of those cards with success.

  • Treasured Trash is suprisingly one of the most common replacements for House Spider, and seems to be performing well! This card gives you a massive powerplay to try to finish the game when your hand is getting empty in the late game.
  • Tenor of Terror, despite his nerf, is still a decent inclusion in the archetype as a 1-of and seem to be performing well. This card is very comparable to House Spider, but provides a bit of extra burn damage. Consider bringing Tenor of Terror in if you’re missing a little bit of value.
  • Captain Farron is a staple of late game burn damage, but is quite slow. It is a strong 1-of if you often face matchups where how much burn you can find is more important than late-game tempo.

General Tips

  • To open-attack, or to develop? Choosing if you want to open-attack or develop before attacking is at the core of the aggro gameplay, and making the wrong choice can easily cost you the game. Be mindful of what your opponent could do to punish you for either choice.
    • With this deck, you often prefer to develop unless there is a real punish for it.
    • Also, because you tend to rapidly flood the board, you’re usually interested in trades to prevent your board from getting clogged up. Open-attacking oftentimes means you will trade less.
  • Play for pressure and Nexus damage. Almost all your cards have the ability to deal direct face damage, and/or to create a meaningful pressure. Focus on putting your opponent on the back foot and push as much damage as possible to eventually close out with burn damage.
    • For example, you generally don’t want to play Bandle City Mayor right before your attack if you have another play that pushes more damage.
  • Find the right timing for Noxian Fervor and Imperial Demolitionist. Both these cards are crucial sources of burn damage, but can be prevented by the opponent. Additionally, be mindful that Noxian Fervor can be used to prevent a Drain or a Lifesteal hit.
  • Get familiar with the range of spells Conchologist can offer you. Conchologist gives you a choice of three among 32 possible 1-3 cost spells from your regions – Bandle City and Shadow Isles. Here are some things to keep in mind:
    • Stay flexible. All cards can find their use – don’t dismiss any options immediately without consideration.

General mulligan tips:

  • Inventive Chemist, Legion Rearguard, Legion Saboteur, Stone Stackers. As a aggro-burn archetype, your main focus should be to pressure the opponent right from the start of the game. Look for a strong curve of high-pressure units, and mulligan away the rest. If you have an attack token on turn 1 but don’t see any 1-cost units in hand, I would advise to mulligan away your whole hand – even 2-cost units, as you’re likely to find one of them again anyway. If you’re feeling that you’re set for the first 2 turns, you can keep more expensive units to curve into.
  • Ziggs is a regularly good keep against decks that sruggle to remove him.

Be aware that these are just the general guidelines to help you understand the deck’s game plan. Mulligans are very matchup-dependant – please refer to the matchup section below for more specific advice on mulligans against different meta decks.


Mulligan for: Legion Rearguard, Stone Stackers.

Matchup tips:

  • Teemo Swain is a midrange archetype looking to set up Swain win condition with shrooms and other direct Nexus damage. Be careful not to go too low on Nexus health against them, else they could kill you with burn without needing to wait for their Swain setup.
  • They have no counterspells or healing, and they are not as fast as you, making it quite easy for you to finish them once you get them into your burn reach.
    • Use Noxian Fervor on your non-damaged unit. It is quite easy for them to finish a damaged unit with Ravenous Flock or Scorched earth, however, they have a hardest time against full health units – their Fast removals for those are limited to Pokey Stick and Death’s Hand.
    • When possible, look to play around an Aloof Travelers that could come down to discard your Decimate.
  • Teemo Swain excels at dealing with 1-health units thanks to Teemo, Pokey Stick, and Poison Dart. Mid-sized threats however are a lot more annoying for them, and curving out a Legion Rearguard into a Stone Stackers can rapidly snowball the game out of their control.

Mulligan for: Inventive Chemist, Legion Rearguard, Legion Saboteur, Stone Stackers.

Matchup tips:

  • This archetype plays numerous Lurk units and looks to increase their attack as the game goes on. Rek’Sai, Pyke, and their massive Overwhelm lurkers will surely close out the game if it goes long enough for them to have a high attack. However, thanks to your hyper-aggressive playstyle you can often pressure them when their Lurkers aren’t big enough yet.
  • Look to pressure them as early and as hard as possible. This matchup is a straightforward race.
  • They have no counter for burn damage – no healing, no counterspells, no hand disruption. Once you get them into your burn range, the game should be easy to close as long as they can’t race you. Look to cast Noxian Fervor when they don’t have enough mana for Death from Below, and ideally for Bone Skewer.

Mulligan for: Inventive Chemist, Legion Rearguard, Legion Saboteur, Stone Stackers, Ziggs.

Matchup tips:

  • Ezreal Vi Shellfolk wants to stall out the early game with cheap value units and Piltover & Zaun’s removals. Then in the midgame, it takes control of the board with Vi, snowballing tempo and value advantages with Curious Shellfolk.
  • Racing them in the first turns can be hard as they have a bunch of early blockers and removals. However, once they’ve run out of such tools, you can push tons of damage by going wide. Vi can be annoying – but she is expensive, and Shellfolk’s initial impact on the board against you will be very low.
  • They don’t have counterspells or healing to deal with your burn. However, be aware they can play Aloof Travelers to make you discard your Decimate. They can also Prank your hand several times to increase your burn spells’ costs and buy themselves a lot of time.
  • Don’t trade your 2/1 units into their Otterpus or Loping Telescope without a reason (which can be – you need board space, to push damage through, etc.) Ideally, you want to remove their 1-health units with Pokey Sticks or Poison Darts, or to buff your own fragile units with Poppy.

Mulligan for: Inventive Chemist, Legion Rearguard, Legion Saboteur, Stone Stackers.

Matchup tips:

  • Poppy Rally decks rely on building up a board and leveraging it with synergies, Rallies, and combat tricks. Therefore, if you can force trades with your attacks, it will make their plan harder to execute. They have nothing to interact with Decimate, though they can counter Noxian Fervor with Nopeify.
  • Brightsteel Protector is a great card of them to make your attack awkward. It can be hard to play around it as you often want to develop, so try to push them to use it at the time that is least inconvenient for you.
  • This matchup goes very fast because of the Elusives on the other side. They aren’t well-suited to block you, so you want to create as much pressure as possible. However, you can’t block Elusives either, so if they get time to set up a Rally turn you will be in trouble unless you can interact with Pokey Stick and Noxian Fervor.

Mulligan for: Inventive Chemist, Legion Rearguard, Legion Saboteur, Stone Stackers, Ziggs.

Matchup tips:

  • Gangplank Sejuani is a midrange archetype looking to trigger Plunder effects and level up Gangplank and Sejuani rapidly. Both champions are extremely strong win conditions once leveled – you don’t have anything to deal with them, so you’ll have to to race.
  • This archetype is quite good at dealing with 1-health units because of Parrrley and Make it Rain. Avoid setting up the perfect Make it Rain for them, and when possible try playing 1-health units when they can’t cast Parrrley or when they already triggered Plunder for the turn.
  • They have no healing or counters, and therefore are quite vulnerable to burn damage. Getting them into your burn reach can be difficult because of their early cards, but if you get there, you should be able to finish them.
  • They can have a hard time answering Noxian Fervor – their only fast speel removals are Make it Rain, Monster Harpoon, and Three Sisters. If you cast Noxian Fervor on a 2+ health units when they have less than 3 mana, they have no possible answer in their deck.
  • Keep track of the card they steal to you with the Nab effect from Black Market Merchant and Yordle Grifter. They can find answers you would not expect and burn damage in your deck.
  • Because they have large Overwhelm units, some burn damage of their own, and can get access to yours with Nab, you should be careful to not go too low on Nexus health.

Mulligan for: Inventive Chemist, Legion Rearguard, Legion Saboteur, Stone Stackers.

Matchup tips:

  • The Bandle Tree win condition isn’t too scary for us as it usually too slow and costs them a lot of tempo. However, they have the Bandle City board flood gameplan to contest the board and prevent some damage from going through. Ravenous Flock, Group Shot, Buster Shot, and House Spider are all strong tempo plays for them.
  • Your gameplan is to push a large amount of damage early with your low cost units while Flock, Group Shot, Buster Shot aren’t that effecient yet. Then, finish them with burn. However, this plan will be a lot harder to execute if they get a turn 2 House Spider.
  • They don’t have any healing or counterspells, so if you get them in reach of your burn you are in a good spot. However, be aware that they can play Aloof Travelers to make you discard your Decimate – when possible, try to play around it.

Mulligan for: Inventive Chemist, Legion Saboteur, Stone Stackers, Bandle City Mayor. Keep Poppy if you have a great early hand. Keep Legion Rearguard if you’re attacking on turn 1 and have no other 1-cost unit.

Matchup tips:

  • As you both have a very strong early game and similar level board presence, this matchup can get a bit grindy. If one player can outspeed the other, however, the game will finish very decisively as neither of you has counterplay to burn damage – unless you can find Aloof Travelers with Bandle City Mayor.
  • Poppy is fairly hard to remove in this matchup as all units have low power and can’t trade into her efficiently. To kill the opponent’s Poppy, look to block her with a 3-attack unit and finish her with a Pokey Stick.
  • Because neither of you has removal and the matchup can get grindy, Bandle City Mayor is a premium card to get you more value and accelerate your gameplan. If the opponent plays Bandle City Mayor, you must try to punish the initial tempo cost with a strong attack and force Bandle City Mayor to block.
  • Try to force trades while you are on the attack – in this case, you get Impact procs and the opponent doesn’t. However, be careful to not downtrade and give the board control to the opponent.

Mulligan for: Inventive Chemist, Legion Rearguard, Legion Saboteur, Stone Stackers, Ziggs. Keep Poppy if you have a good early hand.

Matchup tips:

  • The Darkness as a spell is too slow early on, so you should use that window to create tempo advantage and pressure. While they do have some good early plays, their options tend to be a bit clunkier on the following turns, when you can go really wide and accelerate the game.
  • Getting a board-wide buff with Poppy can win you the game if the opponent was looking to stabilize with low-damage spells like Withering Wail, Vile Feast, Pokey Stick or Withering Mist. Try to bait out their Darkness spell before playing Poppy and getting in an attack with her.
  • During the midgame, Ixtali Sentinel helps them to stabilize and heal out of your burn’s range. Look to deny her a Lifesteal hit by killing the unit she fights with Noxian Fervor. You can also look for Guile or Apprehend with Conchologist to stun her.

Mulligan for: Inventive Chemist, Legion Rearguard, Legion Saboteur, Stone Stackers, Ziggs.

Matchup tips:

  • GP TF Bandle is a pretty similar deck to Yordle Burn – strong board presence combined with a lot of burn damage. However, they don’t play as many early units, and they don’t have as much guaranteed direct burn damage. In exchange, they have an insanely strong payoff with Gangplank, and a lot more control tools (e.g. Twisted Fate, Make it Rain, Powder Kegs).
  • While GP TF Bandle is also a very aggresive deck with a lot of burn damage, in this matchup, they tend to play the control role with their better removals and mid-game power-plays. However, be careful to not let your Nexus health go dangerously low – they are still a burn-oriented deck.
  • Avoid stacking the board with numerous 1-health units and setting up a devastating TF’s Red Card or Make it Rain. Look to trade your low-health units quickly.
  • Noxian Fervor is a great counter to Double Up, or even Parrrley, so you don’t take face damage.

Mulligan for: Inventive Chemist, Legion Rearguard, Legion Saboteur, Stone Stackers.

Matchup tips:

  • This matchup can be difficult as they have a strong early board presence, making it hard to push damage. They also finish games quite decisively with Sion and their own direct damage, meaning our window to finish them with burn is short.
  • While they have strong early tempo, they can’t always go as wide as you – especially if they get a bit of a heavier hand. Look to go as wide as possible to outnumber their units and push damage through.
  • They don’t have any healing or counterspells – if we get them in reach of our burn we are in a good spot. Be careful not to fall behind too much in tempo so they don’t kill you before you get to cast your burn.
  • Pokey Stick is a great answer to Boom Baboon, Zaunite Urchin, and it can also finish off a damaged unit – which happens often as they will try to value-block your 2-attack units with Sump Dredger or Twinblade Revenant. The units that they’ve choosed to save with Survival Skill earlier in the game is another easy target for Pokey Stick.
  • Try to play around Get Excited! when you look to cast Noxian Fervor. Keep in mind, that a lot of versions out there play Mystic Shot and Ravenous Flock as well.

Closing Words

Yordle Burn has been a dominant deck last season and despite the nerfs to Stone Stackers and Tenor of Terror it still sits at a Tier 1 spot so far this season.

This is also a fairly straightforward deck to pilot that produces quick games, so if you want to climb the ladder quickly I can’t recommend this list enough.

If you have a question, want to share feedback, or discuss this guide, I’ll be happy to answer you in the comments below! 😉

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Thanks for reading!


LoR player with multiple tournament wins and #4 ladder peaks. Ascended Seasonal top 4. I love writing guides to share my experience with the game with the community!

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