Sometimes, I just want to play a deck that doesn't require much skill to pilot that decides games within the first few turns. Aggro Nature seemed to fit that bill perfectly - I either get lucky draws within the first 3 turns and steamroll my way to victory or lose. The catch is, of course, that its performance comes down to a series of coin flips. Going first gives a huge advantage to this deck, and going second usually spells a loss in the first 3 turns.
In these 5 matches, 4 of them ended in 3 turns. Amazing in terms of game turnover, but not so great in terms of overall win rates.
Every week, I give away a few units of Hive SBI which help to upvote your Hive posts for visibility and rewards for as long as they run - you don't have to do anything on your part. I explained the mechanics of how this giveaway works in another Weekend Ranked Rundown post, but in short, the more active you are in the GU Hive community, the more chances you have to win. You can check your HBI status here.
This week's winners:
@iamjabez and @michoggu - Leave a comment to accept the prize/give it to someone else or it will be forfeited once I post the next giveaway's results. Once you've accepted the prize once, you don't have to leave a comment anymore; future prizes will automatically be sent to you. Congrats, and thanks for being part of the GU community!
Deck Link: GUDecks
The deck relies on spamming creatures, making use of Pack Stalk, Crescent Werewolf, and Best Friends as engines to empty your hand as quickly as possible. Wildfire and Trial of the Hydra help to finish opponents off more reliably, as well as to make sure that the deck doesn't get halted in its tracks by a single Guild Enforcer.
I took inspiration from @kstreet 's post here in including Pack Stalk and found it to help swing games a lot when drawn in the correct circumstances. It's possible to have a 5-creature board on T1 going first with something like the following hand:
- Pip and play Crescent Werewolf (0/2 mana)
- Play Pack Stalk (1/2 mana)
- Play Marsh Walker (1/2 mana)
- Play Best Friends (2/2 mana)
- Animal Bond GP
This particular scenario only happened once for me in those 25 games, but it almost guarantees a steamroll when it happens. You can probably expect a concede on T3 from your opponent. Due to how Favor works, your hand will constantly be refreshed with more cards from the Sanctuary with this opening.
Of course, without Underbrush Boars, this deck lacks a good way to steal tempo back on the first two turns, especially when going second. Going second is almost a guaranteed loss against any other aggro/midrange deck. 3 mana pips over 3 turns mean nothing when this deck's entire gameplan relies on setting up a winning board within the first 3 turns. jrok96, a top player recently posted his opinion on why the first player advantage in GU is badly balanced, and I have to agree after experiencing the recent Aggro meta. Aggro decks' win rates are much higher if they go first.
When playing this deck, there is no need for anticipating opponent answers. You always bet that they don't have an answer to your wide board because you'd lose if they did anyway, and you'll also lose if you don't finish the game fast enough. Turn 4 and your opponent Mage might be holding a Shaped Blast? Whether or not you play your remaining two cards doesn't change the fact that a Shaped Blast the next will result in a loss for you, so just play those two cards.
Performance and Matchmaking Breakdown
Starting Rank: Mythic
Reward Packs: 3x Core Rare, 3x Core Epic, 1x DO Rare, 1x DO Legendary
Theoretical pack value based on current pack prices: $27.48
|Opponent God||Deck Archetype||Score (Wins / Total Games)|
|Nature||Midrange Nature||1 / 3|
|Aggro Nature||1 / 1|
|Regen Nature||0 / 1|
|Control Nature||0 / 1|
|War||Aggro War||0 / 1|
|Frenzied Aggro War||1 / 2|
|Control War||0 / 2|
|Magic||Aggro Magic||2 / 2|
|Control Magic||1 / 1|
|Card Draw Magic||2 / 2|
|Death||Zombie Death||2 / 2|
|Deception||Control Deception||1 / 1|
|Aggro Deception||1 / 1|
|Hidden Rush Deception||1 / 1|
|Light||Control Light||2 / 4|
|Total||15 / 25|
Even though 15 wins isn't great by any means, it's decent given how fast the games go and how reliant it is on going first to win. Opponents' Underbrush Boars or Pyramid Wardens can put an early stop to this deck's charge as well. War decks also have an edge over this deck with their Blitz units - a wide board doesn't mean too much when your opponent drops Blitz units that kill your units and survive the turn.
This deck does pretty well against Magic as long as your opponent doesn't have a board clear on turn 4/5. Magic's removal is limited to single targets for the most part and can't stop a wide board until T4 usually. If you hate Dralamar Mage, you can consider playing this deck - you should be able to finish the game before the game hits 5.5 mana where they can unleash their OTK.
Against Light, it usually comes down to whether you go first, and if your opponent has the Mace of Calling (2-mana 2/3 relic that adds an Acolyte to his hand) in his starting hand. While Light decks don't have much removal, early buff combos like Vexing Vicar + Shieldbearer or Felid Janissary can put a stop to the party.
Although this week's result wasn't very good, I'm satisfied with it for how much effort I put into it. I was a little busier with my other plans this week and wanted to reduce my playing time on GU. The aggro/Dralamar meta also didn't make for too engaging gameplay, so I decided to play only the minimum required this weekend. If things don't change too much in the coming weeks, I probably will reduce my playtime until the new set drops. The current meta feels like it breeds more frustration than fun for me.
Past 10 Weekend Ranked posts and performance in order of recency:
|Time Period||Deck||Score (Wins / Total Games)||Starting Rank|
|Mar 2022 W4 (Current)||Aggro Nature||15 / 25||Mythic|
|Mar 2022 W3||Aether Magic||16 / 25||Mythic|
|Mar 2022 W2||Card Draw Magic||22 / 25||Mythic|
|Mar 2022 W1||Control Nature||19 / 25||Mythic|
|Feb 2022 W4||Control Nature||19 / 25||Mythic|
|Feb 2022 W3||Tempo Magic||18 / 25||Mythic|
|Feb 2022 W2||Tempo Magic||19 / 25||Mythic|
|Feb 2022 W1||Tempo Magic||18 / 25||Mythic|
|Jan 2022 W5||Tempo Magic||19 / 25||Mythic|
|Jan 2022 W4||Mid-range Nature||17 / 25||Mythic|
What do you think of the current meta? From my casual peering into the
balance channel on Discord, it seems like there are many people who are rather unhappy with the state of balance on GU, and I'm inclined to agree. While I still enjoy GU's core gameplay, some of their business and balance decisions have been rather questionable, which makes me worry a little about GU's future. Hoping that things do work out in the future though.
Hope everyone's Weekend Ranked went well!
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I stay away from aggro nature as I agree with you on the mulligan coin flip. I believe mid-range and control nature is where it is at, if you want some sort of consistency. Amazon again is geared to be aggro and I'm trying to get it to where it is mid-ranged focused.
You're right, but Control Nature is more or less dead without Compost Charms due to the Revivification change; it can't stand up to the aggro decks without decent healing now, and midrange was just a little too standard for my liking this time around haha. Would like to see how Amazon fares in the current meta, I feel like it's been largely overshadowed by Viking War which seems to be stronger in general.
Fantastic article, @kephler. And thanks a lot for choosing me as one of the winners. I would gladly accept the prize! 🙏
No problem, just sent it your way 😃 Cheers!
I don't think revitalize is any good. The heal effect is marginal without many high hp creatures and the summon can low-roll hard.
It works OK in this deck only because of its synergies (Pack Stalk, Crescent Werewolf, Wildfire and Trial of the Hydra). The main effect is to get 2 Wild creatures out for 1 mana, and even though it may flop by spawning 0/1 + 1/1, my experience is that the average roll is decent, and if it flops usually it can be salvaged with a Wildfire. Of course, I wouldn't run it in other decks that don't have these synergistic cards.
15 wins with a budget deck is quite decent. It proves again that Mythic is available to anyone who has honed their playing skills.
Thank you for the prize!
Thank you, and no problem! 😄