The first pair of Rising Tides tournaments for Legends of Runeterra happened over the weekend May 2-3. The Duels of Runeterra tournament series had its eighth events, testing the deckbuilding skills of its players just a few days after Rising Tides expansion launched.
The North American portion was won by three-times finalist and two-times champion 上弦式神 — the only player in the tournament series to boast this achievement. Over in Europe, Duels crowned a new champion in Zezedude.
Below are the champions’ decks.
Duels of Runeterra NA #8 winner — decks
Endure decks came back in the tournament meta with a bang, winning both EU and NA, though with different lists. 上弦式神 went with a Kalista/Thresh Mistwraiths build, which features a stronger curve overall at the expense of 1/1 token spam. The deck wins by either tempo pressure from Mistwraiths or by dropping a massive They Who Endure which then either attacks for the win or gets flung into the nexus with Atrocity.
Usually, when you see a Noxus/Piltover aggro deck on ladder, it’s some sort of Draven burn. 上弦式神, however, opted to experiment with no champions at all.
Instead of having 3x Draven in his deck, the NA champion freed these slots for triple Decimate just to have more direct damage. Why attack, when you can just hit face directly?
Scouts Aggro was the world first Master deck in Rising Tides, and here it is again, winning tournaments. 上弦式神 fine-tuned Pokrovac’s list, adding Genevieve Elmheart instead of Citrus Dealer and 3x Hired Gun just for extra Challenger mechanics.
The deck is one of the strongest Aggro lists in Runeterra right now, viable on the ladder too.
Duels of Runeterra EU #8 winner — zezedude decks
Here’s the other version of the They Who Endure Midrange deck, once again in tournament-winning position. This is by far the more classic version, running Elise and Tryndamere as champions and 3x Omen Hawk for deck buff.
Both versions are great and it really depends on your personal preference.
Another Noxus/Piltover Aggro, but this time it’s the OG Draven/Jinx discard. The deck doesn’t have that much direct nexus damage, at least until Jinx is leveled up. After that, it’s bombs to the face every turn for 4 damage each (basically a cheaper Decimate).
This is a less popular list on the ladder compared to the classic Draven burn.
Where would we be without the good old Bannerman Midrange. The archetype was by far the most represented one in the tournament, and for good reason. It has the strongest curve of all midrange decks with Loyal Badgebear and Grizzled Ranger being MVP additions with Rising Tides.
Choice of champion varies. The standard list runs Fiora and Garen, but zezedude here opts for Miss Fortune for extra combat pressure.
Disclosure: Author of this article is associated with the Duels of Runeterra tournament series.