Yordle Darkness: Exploring the Dark

You thought Darkness was a solved archetype? In this deck of the day article, Random7 is here to share a new version with a unique Yordle twist that has performed lately!
  • Origin

Hi Random7HS here with a Deck of the Day on Yordle Darkness. Since its inception, Darkness has mostly run the same key units, with minor variations on 1-drops. With the release of Yordle Explorer and Yordle Captain, a Darkness player of the username B1tter has now found some new cards to play with.

At the time of writing this, B1tter, is currently 12 – 3 on the ladder with Yordle Darkness. After seeing B1tter’s success with the deck, I played a few games of this deck on the ladder and brought it as part of my lineup to OLS, a biweekly community tournament. So far, I’ve only had 1 loss with the deck, against Kennen Ezreal.

Outside of landmark decks, Darkness’s biggest weakness in previous iterations was that board-based decks could overwhelm it in the midgame. Yordle Explorer and Yordle Captain plug this hole. Darkness already runs a significant number of early game units that Explorer and Captain can buff. Once buffed, these units turn into formidable threats that can either stall until the late game or win the game outright.

  • Gameplan

In older Darkness lists, the game plan was very straightforward, albeit not the easiest to execute. Try to stall until the late game while trying to buff darkness with Twisted Catalyzer and Veigar. Then, once you reach late game, you can either run your opponent out of cards with infinite removal or kill your opponent with a leveled Veigar.

In Yordle Darkness, similar to other Yordle decks, you want to play Explorer and Captain as early as possible. With Yordle Explorer and Yordle Captain, in the early to mid-game, you can pressure your opponent with 2 and 4 drops that used to only be used as chump blockers. Alternatively, you can set up a wall of units to force your opponent to take bad trades if they wish to attack. As a bonus, Yordle Explorer even buffs Veigar and Captain buffs every card in the deck.

Try not to block with Yordle Explorer or Yordle Captain unless you have to. It’s okay if your opponent spends removal spells on Explorer or Captain because it leaves your opponent with fewer removal spells for Veigar. In a similar vein, try not to summon Veigar in situations your opponent can easily kill him in.

Although it may be tempting to throw your hand of Yordles down every game, before doing so, try to think of what threats your opponent may have that you might need to save mana to remove. In most matchups, if your opponent has such threats, it is generally best to just pass, especially if you have Veigar on board.

Also similar to old darkness, always be on the lookout for ways to end the game with Ixtali Sentinel and/or Veigar. Oftentimes, if you plan your lethal correctly over a few turns, your opponent will be caught off guard as their Nexus hits 0.

  • Verdict

The more I play this deck, the more I am convinced that this is the strongest Darkness list I’ve ever seen. Yordle Explorer and Yordle Captain were, by many, agreed to be the strongest cards in the new set. Because Darkness already ran 14-18 Yordles that cost 4 or less, slotting in Yordle support had a very low deck building cost while significantly increasing the power of the deck.

This deck is still in its infancy; I expect to see the list change a bit as time goes on. I personally think as people get better at playing Ezreal Kennen, this list will probably want copies of The box and/or Withering Mists. However, I think the core idea of playing the new Yordles with Darkness will persist.

As always, thanks for reading!