Gwent Meta Report #1

Hey there! TLG Content Team here with our first meta report. We aim to update these regularly as the meta shifts.

After allowing some time for the meta to settle, our team has taken stock of all the competitive decks. We now have a list rating from 5 stars for dominant to 1 star for absolute ass. Decks that are unworthy of your time aren't included, as we know that you want to see the strongest decks to climb with. Under each faction, you can find the best decks put together by our team, as well as a brief summary including strengths and weaknesses.

Feel free to join us on our Discord if you have any questions: https://discord.gg/uSUSJZr

Thanks and see you all when the meta shifts! -Shadow and Wusubi

Big Gernichora

5 stars

With both long and short round contingencies, as well as a powerful Leader ability that supports the Thrive engine, Big Gernichora is able to output a sheer amount of points that few other decks can match. As a result, Big Gernichora bacome one of the strongest decks in the meta.

Strengths:  Insane in short rounds. Very threatening if given control of R1 and able to bleed R2. Thrives represent a lot of points in longer rounds.

Weaknesses: Vulnerable to tall removal and cards like Blue Dream. As a mostly proactive deck, engine decks can outvalue you in a long round.

Considerations: Gimpy can be replaced with Imlerith's Wrath or Ghoul. If you include Ghoul, consider playing Griffin instead of Werecat. -Spyro

Eredin Slyzard

4 1/2 stars

Strengths: This list is similar to Big Gernichora, running with tall bodies and Thrive package. However, the biggest strength of this deck is Slyzard coupled with Eredin's ability to grant Immunity. This combo essentially bricks all damage dealing cards, which is incredibly strong.

Weaknesses: The deck has some direct counters such as Scorch or Yrden. Luckily for Slyzard, these cards don't see a lot of play, which has allowed Slyzard to Thrive (pun intended). Full guide by Saber97 can be found here: http://teamleviathangaming.com/sabers-spicy-slyzard/

Considerations: Striga and Dorregaray vs engines. You have to cut Geralt to accommodate them, which makes your mirror worse. -KingChezz

Midrange Gernichora

4 stars

Strengths: This variant takes the Thrive package and Crones found in its bigger sister and replaces the top end. Instead of big boys, this deck includes control cards. By capping the strength of our units at 7, we brick tall removal. This improves our matchup vs Nilfgaard for example.

Weaknesses: These changes make the deck less powerful than the big variant. It lacks the finishers and your R2 bleed is also less effective.

Considerations: Blue Dream and Werecat improve the mirror. Toad Prince and Dorregaray can help you deal with engines. -Aifbowman

Shupelando

4 stars

Although not as common as his NG and NR counterparts, Shupelando has seen some rise in popularity since the recent Gwent Open qualifiers, in which our teammates BeardyBog and Green-Knight had great success with the list. Big boys are omitted in favour of having control options.

Strengths: This deck improves its matchups vs engines and tall removal. It also includes the Shupe bomb, which can be used as a finisher.

Weaknesses: The deck sacrifices some of the Thrive package in order to include Shupe. You can't bleed as effectively as the taller variants.

Considerations: Blue Dream and Werecat improve the mirror. Toad Prince and Dorregaray can help you deal with engines. -Aifbowman

Unseen Elder Deathwish

3 1/2 stars

Strengths: Elder allows you to play out all 3 rounds. Powerful in long and short rounds. You can easily punish engines. Decent control over R1.

Weaknesses: Plenty of reactive plays which can be bad when you don't have the last say. Inconsistent Bronze package. Terrible vs Nilfgaard.

Considerations: Why aren't you playing Gernichora? -Wusubi

Crach Horn

5 stars

Arguably one of the most powerful Round 1 decks in the current meta and one of the most threatening decks when going second. This deck has no trouble with taking control of the game and setting the pace for the remainder of the match. With the addition of Commander's Horn and Harald Houndsnout, you have consiredably more flexible game plan than any control variants of Crach. You're also resistant to being bled.

Strengths: Oppressive Round 1. Powerful in long rounds. Commander's Horn finisher. Best consistency in the game with the Discard package.

Weaknesses: If you somehow lose the control of the game and end up in a very short Round 3, your Horn value can get disrupted by removal.

Considerations: You can replace Geralt: Professional with Hanmarvyn's Blue Dream and upgrade Djenge to Donar an Hindar or Skjall. -Spyro

Crach Scorch

4 stars

Strengths: Extremely powerful in a long round and decent in medium rounds, due to the ability to potentially clear the opponent's board with Spears and Wild Boar. Usually a deck like this would struggle vs Monsters, however this list packs plenty of tall punish cards; Scorch, Ulfheddin and Geralt: Professional. If you manage to win Round 1, you should be in a fantastic spot. Scorch is one of the highest ceiling cards in the game.

Weaknesses: Being bled. If your opponent wins R1, you will be fairly susceptible to bleeding. If they push you far enough and find a good pass, it’s hard to imagine being favoured vs many decks. Vulnerable to artifact removal. You lose a lot of efficiency when you don't have the last say.

Considerations: Hanmarvyn’s Blue Dream, Harald Houndsnout, Unicorns, Hym, Djenge Frett -Green-Knight

Crach Lippy

3 1/2 stars

Strengths: Thanks to Lippy, you don't have to worry about wasting golds in R1. Scary red coin. Great in a shorter R3. The best deck to bleed with.

Weaknesses: Struggles when Midrange decks take a timely pass in R1. The lack of proactive plays is a problem when you don’t have the last say.

Considerations: You can replace Dimun Light Longship with Bomb Heaver. -Wusubi

Morvran Shupe

4 stars

Even though Shupe may appear as a non-reliable or high variance card, it has proven itself as a force to be reckoned with time and time again. With many powerful and sometimes outright bizarre options available to you, with a bit of luck you can find or create answers for almost every situation presented. Making use of flexible bronzes and great tech cards such as Peter or Blue Dream, Morvran Shupe can deal with anything.

Strengths: Very adaptable game plan. Short round finishers with Shupe and other powerful golds. Difficult to target with few bad matchups.

Weaknesses: Somewhat inconsistent and draw dependant. Struggles in long rounds against other meta decks. Relies on finding  Shupe.

Considerations: You can replace Leo Bonhart with Ocvist or Engraged Ifrit and then upgrade Peasant Militia to Standard Bearer. -Spyro

Morvran Midrange

3 1/2 stars

Strengths: Unlike the Shupe version, this list includes few bad cards. This means that the deck is more consistent and rarely loses to bad draws.

Weaknesses: The biggest weakness of this deck is the lack of a proper finisher, which is why it can struggle vs other meta decks that draw well.

Considerations: You can replace Leo Bonhart with Ocvist or Enraged Ifrit. -KingChezz

Ardal Midrange

3 stars

Strengths: Easily controls engine decks. Leader ability can be disgusting when you yoink Unicorn or Chironex and play the other from hand.

Weaknesses: Control cards don't find much value in certain matchups. Leader ability is too commital. You're too reactive instead of proactive.

Considerations: Leo instead of Blue Dream. You can replace Slave Infantry with Fake Ciri OR Nauzicaa Brigade with Bomb Heaver. -Wusubi

Meve Shupe

4 1/2 stars

Strengths: Nice balance between short and long round potential. Good tempo cards and shorter round finishers. Abundant removal, as well as its own devastating engines. Clear game plan vs most decks. If you're facing a long round deck, you don't mind committing into Round 1, as you can then bleed and win a shorter Round 3. When you're facing Midrange decks, you can take a timely pass in R1. They can't bleed you effectively.

Weaknesses: Missing out on Shupe's Day Off or Unicorns will hurt your power output. No tall unit punishment.

Considerations: Aguara, Roach, Vincent, Bomb Heaver, Mahakam Ale -Green-Knight

Meve Engines

3 1/2 stars

Strengths: Multiple engines that can single handedly take over a round. Very strong last say. Fun (multiple interconnecting combos).

Weaknesses: Easy to target. Falls apart when pushed. Forced to commit high quality cards to win R1. Draw dependent. No thinning.

Considerations: Replace 2nd Revenant with Strays of Spalla, Mahakam Ale or Bomb Heaver, depends on which matchup you want to improve.

Some versions of the deck opt to run Witchers or Blue Stripes for thinning. That however waters down the number of high impact engines you can play. At the moment, this list isn't that great for laddering. NG has moved further towards Shupe. Monsters always run Drowner, Cyclops, Dorregaray, not to mention gold removal such as Whispess. The rating of the deck comes more from its potential strength rather than its current strength in the meta. -SirLoathing

Badda Hugebert

3 stars

Strengths: This deck is built around Hubert Reyk. In this list, he can achieve completely insane power levels. Reliably over 20-30 points. I have personally seen him at 50. Not bad for 7 provisions! However, the deck is not just a one trick pony. It has a very powerful long round thanks to Mastercrafted Spears, Ocvist, Sabrina and any of the engine units that can stick on the board. The deck is pretty good at winning Round 1 since it has so many ways of inflicting massive damage to your opponent's side of the board. With the inclusion of Roach, the list is quite consistent.

Weaknesses: Very susceptible to bleeding. Similarly to other long round decks, the actual lose condition of this deck is losing Round 1 and then getting bled out of your win conditions. The more removal, locks, and artifact removal your opponent has, the harder it will be to win Round 3.

Considerations: Blue Dream, Unicorns, Seltkirk, Summoning Circle, Prince Villem, Temerian Drummer + Blue Stripes package -Green-Knight

Brouver Traps

4 stars

Strengths: This is a strong deck, provided you manage to get control over the game. In a long round, you will beat vast majority of meta decks. Your Crushing Traps get a lot of value in longer rounds. You will most likely be able to bamboozle your opponents with Pitfall Trap and Iorveth.

Weaknesses: Your lose condition is getting bled and ending up in a short Round 3. Avoid this and you should do just fine most of the time.

Considerations: Consider including a card such as Hanmarvyn's Blue Dream or Geralt to improve your odds against Monsters. -Saber97

Brouver Shupe

3/12 stars

Strengths: This deck excels at killing things. It's one of the few decks with enough effective removal to control Meve's engines whilst trading up. The deck benefits from the recent popularity of Brouver Traps. If your opponent tries to bleed, you're happy since you have a powerful short R3.

Weaknesses: It absolutely relies on Shupe for its power.

Considerations: Hanmarvyn's Blue Dream -KingChezz

Filameme

3 stars

Strengths: Strong long and short round. One of the only decks in the game that can make use of carryover through resilience and handbuff. Powerful engines and abundant removal. Resistant to being bled. Clear game plan. Pass Round 1 with 7 cards in hand regardless of the coinflip. Use your Leader ability in R3, or in R2 if you are being bled. There are a few matchups where you want to deviate from this plan. For example Eredin decks. Against this leader you want to win Round 1 and bleed them in Round 2. In that case, using your Leader ability in R1 makes sense.

Weaknesses: The deck functions much better on red coin. If you get out tempo’d on blue, you can be in a tough spot. It's also draw dependant. Some of the cards rely on the Leader ability in order to function effectively. Lack of tall removal.

Considerations: Geralt of Rivia, Cleaver, Gimpy Gerwin, Toruviel, Hawker Support -Green-Knight

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