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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


This deck uses Vampires like Alp and Nekurat as well as the Blood Scent leader ability to put Bleeding effects on the opponent’s units. This, in turn, empowers Orianna and Garkain, which turn into big threats for our opponent to deal with. Since the latest update, this deck can also play the Yghern + Weavess: Incantation + Ozzrel combo, giving it a strong short-round win condition. On top of that, we run, like all Monsters decks, the all-powerful Endrega Larvae and some control options, like Toad Prince and Natural Selection


Essential Cards

  • This deck has three main win conditions: Orianna, Portal and Ozzrel. The first two are very powerful in a longer round, while Ozzrel (and potentially one of our tall units) will give us a quick burst of immediate points and tempo.
  • Naglfar helps us with finding our most important cards. Ideally, we want to play it in Round 3 before using Weavess, allowing us to have access to both gold cards that we were shown. 


  • Great long round with our Bleeding engines
  • Tempo burst through tall-unit package


  • Defenders can pose a problem, as they prevent us from distributing our bleeds.
  • Very vulnerable to being pushed in Round 2 due to the slow nature of the Bleeding mechanic


Tech Choices

  • Cave TrollProtofleder

In this deck, Cave Troll can help us to protect our engines to a degree, but its main purpose is to help supplement our short round. The opponent often does not want to carry counters to the Defender status into this round, meaning we can potentially brick opposing removal or simply gain a solid stat boost due to the Armor on Cave Troll. If we find ourselves in a meta where we will not often end up in a shorter round or we don't gain value out of protecting our units, we can switch Cave Troll out for Protofleder. Protofleder gives us a bit more removal with solid stats, but be warned that the Dominance ability can be difficult to activate especially when we are going second.


    Written by Kolemoen and JMJWilson23.


    5,390 25 18 165

    • 15
      Blood Scent
      Blood Scent Order: Give an enemy unit Bleeding for 3 turns. Charge: 3 Once all Charges are used up, Spawn an Ekimmara into a random allied row. This ability adds 15 provisions to your deck's provisions limit.
    • 13
      Portal Deploy: Summon a random unit with 4 Provision Cost from your deck on both sides of this card.
    • 13
      Yghern Deploy: Gain Armor equal to the number of cards in your hand. If this unit has no Armor, destroy self.
    • 9
      Naglfar Look at 2 random gold cards from your deck, then play one and place the other on top.
    • 7
      Cave Troll
      Cave Troll Defender.
    • 6
      Katakan Thrive. Deploy: Spawn an Ekimmara and Summon it to this row. Deathwish: Repeat the Deploy ability.
    • 4
      Orianna Deploy: Give an enemy unit Bleeding with a duration equal to the number of allied Vampires. Ranged: Every allied turn, on turn end, boost self by the number of Bleeding enemy units.
    • 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.
    • 6
      Armored Arachas
      Armored Arachas Deploy: Apply Bleeding to an enemy unit equal to its base power.
    • 3
      Toad Prince
      Toad Prince Deploy (Melee): Consume a unit with 3 or less power.
    • 5
      Queen of the Night
      Queen of the Night Deploy (Melee): Give Bleeding(4) to an enemy. Deploy (Ranged): Purify a unit.
    • 4
      Gael Deploy (Melee): Damage an enemy unit by 1. If it's Bleeding deal 3 damage instead. Deathblow: Boost self by the destroyed unit's base power.
    • 5
      Alzur's Thunder
      Alzur's Thunder Damage a unit by 5.
    • 3
      Alp Deploy: Give an enemy unit Bleeding for 4 turns.
    • 3
      Nekurat Zeal. Order (Melee): Give an enemy unit Bleeding for 2 turns. Cooldown: 2. Whenever you play a Vampire card, reduce this unit's Cooldown by 1.
    • 1
      Endrega Larva
      Endrega Larva Thrive. Deploy: Spawn a base copy of this unit and Summon it to this row.
    • 4
      Feast of Blood
      Feast of Blood Purify and damage an enemy unit by 3. If you control a Vampire, also give it Bleeding for 3 turns.
    • 4
      Natural Selection
      Natural Selection Damage an enemy unit by 4, then Spawn a Drone in a random allied row for each point of excess damage dealt.
    • 4
      Garkain At the end of every allied turn, boost self by 1 if there is a Bleeding enemy.


    Favorable against
    Struggles against

    Tier 3

    Honorable Mentions