The Team Aretuza GWENT Meta Snapshot attempts to showcase the most-played decks on the Pro and Ranked ladders. We then attempt to rank them based on deck strength. These are the decks dominating the ladder right now, and this list does not represent all of the decks available nor even necessarily the best there is to be seen.
Every deck has a short guide explaining how the list works, its pros and cons, and a few other considerations to take into account. We also list a few matchups we think are particularly good or bad for each deck.
As the meta continues to shift, we will update our Snapshot to reflect the changes. Updates will continue to be announced on the Team Aretuza Discord Community and official Team Aretuza Twitter account.
Season of the Draconid Meta Snapshot (2021)
The meta shifted drastically with the release of 9.2. Back in 9.1, we saw a lot of Sunset Wanderers and cards that were good against it, such as Ivar Evil-Eye. With the nerf to Wanderers and a whole new set of cards, decks are looking pretty different. Monsters in particular got a powerful set of cards, catapulting the Relicts deck to success. Scoia'tael, despite doomsaying on Reddit, has also come to the fore, with the introduction of cards like Orb of Insight and Simlas Finn aep Dabairr breathing new life into Harald Gord-based decks.
That's not to say the other factions don't also have strong decks, but Scoia'tael and Monsters likely saw the most dramatic power shifts. This has lead to a meta that has a lot of hard control decks (trying to keep ST and MO in check), as well as decks with higher point ceilings than those decks, like NR Patience (and even an Archgriffin variant, on rare occasion!). It's possible that we'll see more dramatic meta shifts before the season is done, but below you'll find our impressions of what's getting played at the moment.
Consultants: Kolemoen, Santtu2x, Crozyr, Redrame, TheaBeasty, Lionhart, Driftbling, Asher, Ville, Shinmiri2, Ceely, Ferdinator87, PiotrCNS, Kungfoorabbit
Editors: Callonetta, Nakerman, Gulox2, Joshwitcher760
Managers: Redrame, Johaggis
Original Creators: Adzikov, Damorquis, Jamedi, Kochua, Molegion, Sergi2Vamos, JMJWilson23
Frontrunners: Decks are those that are currently at the top of the meta. Think of them as the favourites to win. They generally beat out other decks that are either ranked lower or are unrefined. These are the decks to beat.
Runners-up: Decks are still big forces to be reckoned with. These fare pretty well in the meta, though they're less dominant than the frontrunners and often have a specific weakness (e.g. draw consistency, row punish, tall punish, lack of proactivity).
Dark Horses: Commendable decks that are decent options and can be used to climb or used in tournaments, but aren’t currently favoured by the metagame. That's not to say they won't win in an upset, but less is generally expected of these lists.
Honourable Mentions: Decks here aren't strong enough to be put into the above rankings, but still have some kind of presence in the meta. These decks might just be fun, or maybe they're easy to play, but they're not the powerhouses that will warp a meta. They may win against unsuspecting opponents and can make for interesting tournament options, but are otherwise worth just keeping an eye on.
What is a Meta Snapshot?
A Meta Snapshot provides an overview of the most competitive decks played in Collectible Card Game. The decks are sorted into tiers to loosely describe the power level of each deck in the current meta landscape. If you have any questions or would simply like to discuss the most recent Snapshot, feel free to visit the Team Aretuza Discord server.
What criteria are used to sort the decks into tiers?
There are many factors that weigh on a deck’s placement into the tier list, but some of the most important are:
- Power level: Simply put this is the amount of raw points a deck can output relative to the remainder of the field. This can often overwrite the other factors if a deck is strong enough on its own to dictate the meta.
- Success rate in common matchups: Having positive matchups against other common decks in the meta, while not all encompassing, can help to elevate a deck’s position in the Snapshot. Conversely, unfavored matchups vs common decks can hurt its placement.
- Consistency: Decks with high levels of consistency can provide a stable experience when playing ladder and this provides them a small boost during our consideration. We also may slightly punish decks that are wildly inconsistent or heavily counterable due to their potential volatility.
What are the meanings of the various tiers?
See the description above for an overview of what each tier means.
My experience differs from the Meta Snapshot. Does that mean the Snapshot is not accurate?
It is important to keep in mind that the Snapshot is not a definitive answer to the meta. It is intended to describe an overview of the meta over a relatively long period of time. As such, the Snapshot values factors such as low volatility when rating decks. Some decks are more highly volatile yet can offer great success when piloted by a player with excellent knowledge of its matchups or when finding a period in which the other decks in the meta create a favorable environment for it. In addition, tiers are described in a manner that is “rigid” while the position of decks in the meta is fluid, meaning that on a given day the results of decks relative to their tiers could vary greatly.
At the end of the day, a large number of factors (relative player skill, knowledge of the matchup at hand, cards drawn/order of card draw, result of small decisions, etc.) determine the outcome of a match and these are different for each player. We offer merely the suggestion of those involved in the Meta Snapshot, but please account for your own experiences and craft a strategy that best suits your own understanding of the game.
I play a different list from the one on the Meta Snapshot. Is one of these lists incorrect?
We try to refrain from terms such as correct or incorrect. The lists provided in the Snapshot are intended to illustrate the most popular “stock” lists that we see on the ladder. They provide a basis from which players can adapt to their current local meta. If there is a variation of a deck in the Snapshot that achieves success for you, please don’t let us hold you back from using it!
I play a deck that is not included in the Meta Snapshot. Does this mean my deck is weak?
Not at all! There are huge opportunities for deck exploration for each player. It is important that each player find a deck that suits their own understanding of the game so that they can have maximum success when playing. Playing a deck which one can pilot to its highest level is almost always more effective than playing a stock or meta list poorly. If you would like to discuss the reasons for a particular deck’s exclusion, feel free to reach out in the Team Aretuza Discord server.
Do you only include the most popular decks?
We try to stick to the decks that are seen the most on the ladder so that we can describe the deck and its pros/cons as accurately as possible. While the basis for inclusion is popularity, the position of the decks into tiers is not based upon popularity. Rather, we position the decks into tiers based upon our perception of their strength in the meta, based upon the criteria described above.
Any other questions? Please join us on our Discord server!