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Meta Snapshot #12

Patch Overview

Update: 17 November 2019; First published: 16 October 2019; Game version:





Consultants: Adzikov, Damorquis, Jamedi, JMJWilson23, KochuaKolemoen, MolegionSanttu2x, Sergi2Vamos.
Editors: Apero, Kochua
Manager: JMJWilson23

Tier 1

Decks in this tier have favourable matchups against the majority of lower tier decks and some favourable matchups against other Tier 1 lists. Another criterion is that these decks should be able to win against lower-tier decks on blue coin most of the time.


Tier 2

Decks in this tier can beat Tier 1 decks if the player can access its full potential, or are strong decks with a clear counter; in addition, these decks should win consistently against lower tiers.


Tier 3

While decks in this tier remain good laddering options that can successfully achieve high winrates, they can struggle to achieve the same winrate when matched up against decks we place in higher tiers. They may make for strong tournament options.


Honorable Mentions

Decks here aren't strong or popular enough to be tiered, but have enough potential to be better with the adequate support cards. They may win against unsuspecting opponents and can make for interesting tournament options, but are otherwise worth just keeping an eye on.

Written by Jamedi; Consultation: Damorquis, JMJWilson23 and SwanDive


What is a Meta Snapshot?

A Meta Snapshot is a comprehensive list of the decks which are played in a CCG. The decks are ordered by criteria, accounting for their power level through a tier (used by Team Aretuza & Team Nova), star or numerical system. If you would like to discuss our current Meta Snapshot, you can join our Discord server.


Which kind of criteria are used to classify a deck into a tier?

While the list of criteria is extensive, here are the most important aspects:

  • Power level is the amount of points a deck can output in comparison to others in the meta. In general, decks of higher tiers tend to have a greater number of unconditional points without depending on what rival decks do.
  • Consistency is focused on the draw dependency of a deck and the amount of thinning this deck has. Better thinning means more consistency, which usually means easier access to higher-value cards. If a deck is too dependent on drawing one or two certain cards but runs no thinning, it lacks consistency.
  • Counterability is the difficulty that other decks have to tech for the matchup against a certain deck and how much they need to sacrifice to improve the matchup. In Gwent, there are a lot of ways to prepare a deck for a concrete matchup and we can expect players to tech against the strongest/most popular decks of the metagame. The capability of a deck to win despite teching plays a role in its tier placement.

The data are collected by the players in several hundred matches and is then translated into the Snapshot. While the normal ladder experience can be different, tiered decks are good to climb the ladder to Pro Rank with relative ease.


What is the meaning of the different tiers?
  • Tier 1: Decks in this tier are the strongest, the most difficult to counter and heavily influence how decks in other tiers adapt.
  • Tier 2: Usually this tier covers decks which are still good, but due to some reason, they cannot be qualified as Tier 1. They usually have less strength than Tier 1 decks or have another factor that makes them slightly worse than top tier decks. In some particular metagames, a deck can be Tier 2 due to how easy it is to tech against it.
  • Tier 3: Decks in this category are still viable for climbing the ranked ladder, but they encounter more difficulty at high fMMR. They can still be used as tournament picks (in formats in which you can ban). They may still have favorable matchups versus some Tier 1 decks, but they are usually unfavored. Decks which are inconsistent or too draw-dependent also fall into this category.
  • Honorable Mentions: Here, we put decks whose strength is not enough to be tiered, but which have the potential to be much better with some support. These decks are always worth keeping an eye on. A deck which has been discovered recently and has not been played enough to be tiered can also fall into this category.


My experience differs from what you describe in the Snapshot. Does this mean that the Snapshot is not accurate?

Short answer, no. Long answer, there are a huge number of factors that can influence the development of a matchup between two players with their respective decks, which includes player skill, knowledge of the matchup and the respective decks, cards drawn and how they have played the match. Also, it is worth noting that a meta snapshot represents a picture of how the meta is in a particular moment. “Tiers” as defined above are never rigid constructs. In any given day, the meta can shift dramatically.

In general, inexperienced players tend to play worse and with more unpredictable lists. As we move up on the ladder, decklists tend to be more optimized, sometimes influenced by content creators such as popular streamers or the most recent meta snapshot. Reaching Pro Rank, we can expect to face the best possible players with the most optimized decklists.


I have a different list from the one shown in the Snapshot. Does this mean that one of the lists is incorrect?

Lists provided in our snapshots are usually stock lists, which are supposed to be a base to be modified according to the meta you are currently facing and your own playstyle. The tech section provides some card replacement options which may be more effective within a particular meta. This normally does not affect a deck’s overall consistency.


I haven’t seen this deck which appears in the Snapshot / I play this list or this archetype and it isn’t in the Snapshot.

The Snapshot tries to be as accurate and complete as possible. We release an initial snapshot as soon as the meta has settled after a game patch and make as many updates as possible afterwards. If a deck is not included, it will most likely be added in one of the next updates, as we try to prioritize the most popular and relevant decks. Despite that, we have to skip some decks which are unpopular or are very similar to existing ones. If you would like to be informed about our updates, feel free to check our website regularly or follow Team Aretuza or Team Nova on Twitter or Discord.


Are you just including the most popular decks/FOTM lists? Do you keep the best lists for yourselves?

No. While it is true that part of our work is to try and create a representation of the meta that is as accurate as possible and this, of course, includes the popularity of decks, popularity has no impact on how decks are tiered. We do not keep the best lists for ourselves. We are creating meta snapshots to share our collective knowledge of this game and provide players of all levels with a more enjoyable Gwent experience.


Do you have more questions? Join the discussion on Discord!

Tier 1

Tier 2

Tier 3

Honorable Mentions


With the rework to Arachas Swarm arriving in the most recent expansion, a new Consume strategy was born. The deck shifted to be more focused on tempo, resulting in the leader ability change to Death's Shadow to accommodate this goal and take advantage of some high-value Deathwish cards. While our deck does play some minor engines, typically in the form of Thrive units, we are much more comfortable when we can win Round 1 and push the opponent in Round 2 to secure maximum value from our leader ability that resets in each round. Our bronzes are strong and can often help to carry Round 1 on their own, with the help of a timely use of one or two golds, such as Caranthir Ar-Feiniel, Miruna or Imperial Manticore.


Essential Cards

  • Yghern is a powerful tool for the deck because we can mitigate the potential downsides of the card easily. Usually, the weakness of the card (aside from tall removal, which we are mostly unable to avoid) is that it can be removed somewhat cheaply, especially in a shorter round. With this deck, we are able to Consume it to avoid damage on Yghern’s armor while also setting up our Ozzrel in the same round as our strong Yghern play.
  • With this deck, we are able to quickly turn the corner with tempo plays, but sometimes must make slower moves following this. In these scenarios, especially when they occur in Round 1, Endrega Larva are a powerful tool to continue applying pressure to the opponent. Most decks cannot remove both Larvae cheaply, meaning they will inevitably grow in value and make it difficult for the opponent to catch up when they fall behind.


  • Strong deck in all three rounds, making our Round 2 push strong
  • Has answers to decks that play wide or engines


  • Slightly draw-dependent with regards to some of key cards, notably Caranthir Ar-Feiniel, Kayran and Dettlaff: Higher Vampire
  • Weak to tall-unit punish and other decks that play greedily with tall units


Tech Choices

  • Cave Troll, Alzur's ThunderGeralt of Rivia, Natural Selection

Our deck lacks any way to deal with tall units so if this becomes a problem we can tech Geralt of Rivia or Korathi Heatwave into the deck. At the same time, we gain another method to deal with opposing engines, which we can already Seize multiple times by combining Miruna and our leader ability.


Written by JMJWilson23.


7,970 25 23 164

  • 15
    Death's Shadow
    Death's Shadow Order: Trigger an allied unit's Deathwish ability. On round start, refresh this ability. This ability adds 15 provisions to your deck's provisions limit.
  • 9
    Keltullis Melee: Every allied turn, on turn end, destroy the lowest unit on the side with the most units.
  • 10
    Royal Decree
    Royal Decree Play a unit from your deck.
  • 13
    Yghern Deploy: Gain Armor equal to the number of cards in your hand. If this unit has no Armor, destroy self.
  • 5
    Dettlaff: Higher Vampire
    Dettlaff: Higher Vampire Deathwish: Summon this unit from the graveyard to the same row. This unit's ability is limited to 2 uses and does not refresh when it leaves the battlefield.
  • 7
    Cave Troll
    Cave Troll Defender.
  • 4
    Miruna Deathwish: Seize an enemy unit with 4 or less power.
  • 1
    Ozzrel Deploy (Melee): Consume a unit from your opponent's graveyard. Deploy (Ranged): Consume a unit from your graveyard.
  • 10
    Golyat Deathwish: Your opponent Summons the highest unit from their deck on the opposite row.
  • 5
    Kayran Zeal. Order: Consume an allied unit. Charge: 3.
  • 3
    Caranthir Ar-Feiniel
    Caranthir Ar-Feiniel Deploy: Spawn a 1-power copy of a unit from your hand and Summon it to this row.
  • 5
    Imperial Manticore
    Imperial Manticore Deathwish: Destroy the lowest enemy.
  • 6
    Barbegazi Order: Consume an allied unit. Charge: 2.
  • 5
    Alzur's Thunder
    Alzur's Thunder Damage a unit by 5.
  • 5
    Slyzard Order: Consume an allied unit on this row. Cooldown: 1.
  • 3
    Harpy Egg
    Harpy Egg Deathwish: Spawn a Harpy and Summon it to this row.
  • 1
    Endrega Larva
    Endrega Larva Thrive. Deploy: Spawn a base copy of this unit and Summon it to this row.
  • 4
    Endrega Eggs
    Endrega Eggs Deathwish: Spawn 3 Drones in this row.
  • 4
    Endrega Warrior
    Endrega Warrior Deploy: Consume adjacent units. Spawn a Drone in this row for each Insectoid consumed.
  • 3
    Foglet Deathwish: Summon a copy of this unit from your deck to a random allied row.


Favorable against
Struggles against