This GWENT Meta Snapshot, created by Team Aretuza and Team Nova, attempts to establish the best decks to play on Ranked Ladder and Pro Rank, given the current state of the metagame, in order to maximize the chances of winning games and climbing.

Every deck is accompanied by a short text explaining a little bit about the archetype, showing the reasons for placing it in its tier alongside the pros and cons of the deck and a tech section. 

As the meta continues to shift, we will consistently update our Snapshot as well as add more decks in the following days and weeks. Updates are announced on our Discord and Twitter.

 

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

Decks in this tier are generally viable for normal ladder and for some cheesy picks at tournaments. These decks can surprise opponents and win matches, but without that surprise factor their potential is significantly reduced. A deck at this tier should lose against Tier 1 and Tier 2 decks the majority of the time

 

Honorable Mentions

Decks that aren't strong enough to be tiered, but with enough potential to be much better with the adequate support cards. These kind of decks are always worth 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!

Contributors

Writers: Jamedi, JMJWilson23
Consultants: AdzikovArgeiphontes, Ash_philoBrazilianbeast, DamorquisGwent2town, Jamedi, JMJWilson23, Kara_LisakolemoenMiketocome, Molegion, Poisound, Santtu2xshinmiri2
Editors: Easha Dustfeather, lordgort, Lothari, SwanDive
Manager: SwanDive

Patch Overview

Updated: 14 June 2019 (Game version: 2.2.0.24)
First published: 13 May 2019 (Game version: 2.1.0.57)

  • 14 June 2019:
  • 07 June 2019:
    • Updated the following lists to reflect the recent balance patch:
      Arachas Queen Consume, Artifact Arachas, Brouver Midrange, Calveit Swarm, Crach Control, Dana Harmony, Eithné Deathblow, Emhyr Midrange, Henselt Draug, Svalblod Selfwound.
    • Temporarily removed the following lists, as we have yet to adjust them to the recent balance patch:
      Ardal Tactics, Arnjolf Control, Big Woodland, Brouver Traps, Deathwish, Dwarves, Humans Northern Realms, Shupe Nilfgaard, Shupe Northern Realms.
    • Tier adjustments:
  • 24 May 2019:
    • Added an FAQ
    • Added Artifact Arachas and Brouver Midrange
    • Updated Crach Control deck list
    • Tier adjustments:
      • Big Woodland Tier 2 ⇒ Tier 3
      • Shupe Nilfgaard Tier 2 ⇒ Tier 3
      • Ardal Tactics Tier 3 ⇒ HM
      • Shupe Northern Realms Tier 3 ⇒ HM
      • Dwarves Tier 3 ⇒ Tier 2
      • Crach Control Tier 3 ⇒ Tier 2
  • 19 May 2019:
    • Added links to PlayGwent.com for easy deck importing.
  • 17 May 2019:
    • Added Ardal Tactics, Arnjolf Control, Dana Harmony, Deathwish and Humans Northern Realms
    • Added new matchup section for Tier 1 and Tier 2 decks
       

Tier 1

Tier 2

Tier 3

Overview

Arnjolf the Patricide's buff in the last few patches leaves this leader as a hybrid between pure proactive point- (Svalblod) and mostly control-oriented options (Crach an Craite). We are able to take advantage of Skellige's naturally strong bronzes and some proactive point options to generate a strong base, while using Arnjolf's leader ability to enable Bloodthirst effects and to turn on our key control cards. While Arnjolf Control is a relatively good control deck, part of its strength is its ability to push in Round 2 to win 2-0 if the first round is won. While we have a great deal of versatility when we win Round 1, our deck can be awkward if the opponent is able to push Round 2, either forcing out our single-use leader or potentially bricking some Bloodthirst effects.

  

Essential Cards

  • Svanrige Tuirseach combined with Arnjolf the Patricide is one of our finishers, generating a Bloodthirst 3 scenario in which we can play a total of 19 points.
  • Madman Lugos can only fit into a deck using Arnjolf, due to the necessity of having at least Bloodthirst 3 in the field. We can achieve this condition immediately with Arnjolf’s leader ability. This allows us to remove any engine card in the game.

 
Pros

  • Good finisher with the combination of Arnjolf and Svanrige
  • Excellent short round with the leader; excellent potential to go 2-0

Cons

  

Tech Choices

  • RoachGeralt of Rivia
  • Vigo's Muzzle, Skjall, Primal Savagery, Dimun Pirate CaptainOlaf, Knut the Callous, 2x Drummond Shieldmaiden

Geralt of Rivia is a common tech option for good reason. This card is a solid option to counter opponent tall units and has an artificially inflated floor due to the way that Tactical Advantage forces the opponent to boost a unit to at least 8 points in many instances. Removing Roach reduces our consistency but can be worthwhile if we face matchups where Geralt is strong, mainly other Skellige decks.

The second tech choice allows us to move away from control options and more toward tempo. The package of Olaf and Knut the Callous plays for a large amount of points for the provision cost we pay for it. The combo is very vulnerable to tall-unit punish, but our deck already provides plenty of targets for such cards, so it is less of a concern for us.

  • Arnjolf the Patricide Arnjolf the Patricide 16 Order: Spawn and play Arnjolf the Patricide.
  • Vigo's Muzzle Vigo's Muzzle 12 Lock an enemy unit with 5 or less power and Seize it.
  • Svalblod Totem Svalblod Totem 10 Deploy: Spawn a Svalblod Fanatic on both sides of this card. Order: Damage adjacent units by 2.
  • 3 Roach Roach 10 Whenever you play a gold card, Summon this unit from your deck to a random allied row.
  • 3 Hjalmar an Craite Hjalmar an Craite 10 Deploy (Melee): Banish a unit in your graveyard and damage an enemy unit by its power.
  • 4 Madman Lugos Madman Lugos 9 Deploy: Damage an enemy unit by twice the number of damaged enemy units.
  • 4 Harald Houndsnout Harald Houndsnout 9 Deploy: Spawn 3 of Harald's Pals and Summon them to your other allied row. Order: Damage an allied unit by 1. Cooldown: 1.
  • 4 Gregoire de Gorgon Gregoire de Gorgon 9 Deploy (Melee): Damage an enemy unit by 1. Deathblow: Boost self by 5 and gain a Shield.
  • 6 Svanrige Tuirseach Svanrige Tuirseach 8 Deploy, Bloodthirst 3: Boost self by 5.
  • 4 Donar an Hindar Donar an Hindar 8 Deploy: Damage an enemy unit by 2. Bloodthirst 2: Damage an enemy unit by 5 instead.
  • 3 Skjall Skjall 8 Deploy: Damage an undamaged enemy unit by 4.
  • 6 Djenge Frett Djenge Frett 7 Deploy, Bloodthirst 1: Lock an enemy unit.
  • 4 Ulfhedinn Ulfhedinn 7 Deploy: Damage an enemy unit by half of its current power.
  • Primal Savagery Primal Savagery 5 Damage an enemy unit by 2. Deathblow: Spawn a Bear Abomination and Summon it to a random allied row.
  • 7 Disgraced Brawler Disgraced Brawler x2 5 Deploy, Bloodthirst 3: Lock self. Berserk: Destroy self.
  • 5 Dimun Light Longship Dimun Light Longship x2 5 Order: Damage self and an enemy unit by 1. Cooldown: 1.
  • 3 Svalblod Priest Svalblod Priest x2 5 Every allied turn, on turn end, damage the allied unit to the right by 1, then boost self by 2.
  • 4 Svalblod Butcher Svalblod Butcher x2 4 Deploy: Damage an allied unit by 2, then give an enemy unit Bleeding for 3 turns.
  • 3 Dimun Pirate Captain Dimun Pirate Captain 4 Deploy, Bloodthirst 2: Damage an enemy unit by 3.
  • 3 Heymaey Protector Heymaey Protector 4 Whenever an adjacent unit takes damage, boost self by 1.
  • 2 Svalblod Ravager Svalblod Ravager x2 4 Deploy (Melee): Damage an enemy unit by 2. Bloodthirst 2: Give it Bleeding for 2 turns.

Matchups

Favorable against
Struggles against

Honorable Mentions