Lyonar Kingdoms Round Table 1.91
Lyonar Calls Shotgun Edition
Lyonar players, assemble!
Immortal Vanguards is just about to so I thought it’d be nice to have a thread to discuss our experiences as they develop in the same format I used last time. I’ll briefly go over some potential I see for every Faction card and Neutrals that I think are of special interest to us, I invite you to do both as well in the comments. I’ll be using my own Colloquial Tierlyst to help qualify my judgements so have a read there if you’re not getting why certain words are capitalized. There’s definitely a lot to digest but I’m just going to get started. I’ve sorted the new Lyonar cards in terms of what archetypes I suspect they’ll (mainly) support.
Can’t discuss the expansion without its new General! Lucky for me, I already have. How do you feel about Brome now that more cards have been revealed?
Here’s the Cresftallen Token, isn’t she great? I like how Lyonar’s been getting tons of minions with spears lately.
Steadfast Formation seems kind of a weird card to me; what is it supposed to achieve? I like that it’s free to cast but what deck is out there that will appreciate giving several minions Provoke and that can also deal with the card disadvantage? I honestly have no idea, does anyone else have thoughts on this?
This card looks really promising to me. Dauntless Advance could slot into Bond decks, Zeal decks but also into Tempo and probably do really well. It’s especially good against Thunderhorn, which is something we’re really going to need for the foreseeable future. It even opens up more avenues to play Draining Wave without the downside! It’s not ranged removal, but I can see tons of applications for this.
Vigilator has a really nice design but I don’t know why we’d play Azure Shaman 2.0. Lyonar has a bunch of strong 3-drops and wile the 3/4 statline is good and Build: (1) makes it very likely to survive and actually deal damage (that early in most matches) it needs to compete with the alternatives and its effect seems really tricky to get value off. Zoo decks are brimming with high-impact 3-drops already, where does this fit?
My initial instinct was to pair Prominence with Brome exclusively but I think it has potential in any Lyonar deck that is slow enough to reach 7 Mana before seeking to end the match. The statline is decent enough to survive a turn against most things and even a single Blood Surge gets you a ton of value. My favorite application will still be to play it in a Zeal deck with Brome for 8/14 worth of stats on three bodies but we’ll see if this cat can cut it.
That conditional 4/5 statline! What a weird card! I’m not even sure if I should put this here or under Heal Support because this card is just begging to be put into a new Bulk/Heal hybrid deck with Sunforge Lancer and a whole lot of big beatsticks. Imagine playing this on P1T2, if it gets damaged you’ll have Afterglow ready to buff it back up again right away, comboing with a Lancer for maximum value. That early in a match a big bunch of stats like these might be worth it. In fact, could this slot into a weird new Vale Ascension deck? You use Sanctify and Fortified Assault to generate Hallowed Ground to get back an early Enlistee for 2 Mana? It seems too weird and unreliable but I can’t help liking the idea behind this thing.
Again, how do I categorize this thing? It’s both conditional and very expensive in a Faction that already has Afterblaze, Roar, Empyreal Congregation and freakin’ Divine Bond! Stat sticks don’t do very well in Duelyst because of Dispel and Transform: what’s the point to this card?
Big Baymax here seems like an interesting fit for a Bond deck. You get more huge beefy bodies to Bond and it punishes minion-based counters. It won’t happen if Grapnel and Plasma Storm see a lot of play but the same issue applies to Guardian so I thought I’d mention the card regardless. Probably more of a pack filler for use in Gauntlet.
I put this card here only to suggest that it works with Ironcliffe Heart. Just saaayin’.
Yeah, yeah it’s another Neutral card but c’mon, doesn’t this scream “run Regalia with me” to you? 3-Mana Regalia is playable on P1T2 and if you run a few more Artifacts it seems very easy to get value with this in maybe a Titan or Zeal deck.
Only one piece of Healyonar support this time around, and I’m not sure how I feel about it. It seems okay but it’s really conditional and sets you up for devastating Makantor punishes, among other things. There is a glorious dream behind this card that I’d love to see happen, but I don’t know if it will. What do you think?
Of all the Faction Mech support I like ours best. Oakenheart curves well, has arguably the best statline configuration in the game and I think its effects are easily worth the 1 Mana that makes it cost 5. Lyonar is already good at giving group buffs and Oakenheart’s really matter given some of the other Mechs around.
One of those Mechs is Metaltooth. It pairs well with a surprise Ironcliffe Heart but within a Lyonar Mech deck this card can benefit from Oakenheart, Empyreal Congregation and even the humble War Surge to get a cheap Rush minion that will likely trade favorably.
I think Lyonar should be gearing up for a Mech swarm deck and Replicant is an excellent candidate for them. We’ll get to Surgeforger later but this things also pairs nicely with Auroara and all the aforementioned buffs! Scary stuff!
And finally, S.I.L.V.E.R is a wonderful top-end for a Lyonar Mech deck. It’s not especially strong with Lyonar save to say that if you have Metaltooth on board you can reach for some silly Bond combos from time to time. Lyonar’s access to Aegis Barrier is going to count for a lot for Mechaz0r but this could benefit as well.
Sunbond Pavise continues the tradition of making Brome very akward to position but I think Sunbond Pavise has some real potential. Played well it could make it very difficult for opponents to actually ping Brome and his Pavise down and my experience with Zeal Brome so far is that he could really use a bit of an Attack bump to get over some key breaking points. The Pavise seems like a natural fit with Lost Artificer in a deck and I’ll definitely be testing this thing out.
Is this card underwhelming or am I just crazy? 7 Mana for a spell that does nothing in the turn it’s played? In a Faction that has never been able to compete into the late game so far? It’s clearly designed to combo with a grindy Zeal deck, but is there going to be one of those that can afford to generate no tempo that late in the game? I don’t see it happening, what about you?
Forging those surges, hot! I think this is the best new Lyonar card that will singlehandedly push swarm decks (Golem, Mech AND Zoo) as Lyonar’s strongest. It gets completely wrecked by Dispel but if the opponent just used a card to dispel your stuff that means your stuff is still alive and you can buff that stuff with more of your stuff. Combo with anything swarmy to win. I think this card is bonkers and will lead to auto-concedes from players who don’t have an answer to it in hand.
Along with the amazing Surgeforger Lyonar swarm decks get their own dedicated draw spell for massive refuels following an explosive start. Between Dreamgazer, Zyx and everything else it shouldn’t be hard to draw at least 3 cards off this every time. Excellent card, just be sure to use it before your board gets wiped.
And finally, the big n00b trap itself: Ironcliffe Monument. I love the look and feel and design of this card, but it costs 4 Mana to play and is going to get destroyed, stolen or removed 100% of the time in Ranked. Its effect is soo amazing but to capitalize on it you need a Zoo or Mech deck and I don’t think there’s going to be one that can afford to sink 4 Mana into a card that does nothing and needs another turn to come online. Maybe you combo it with Timekeeper to Build it and transform the Timekeeper right away in some kind of archetype that doesn’t exist yet?
Core Set & Nerf Implications for Lyonar
The announced nerfs to a handful of cards is likely to be very relevant to Lyonar in at least two ways. The change to Saberspine Tiger is probably going to kill of classic Tempo Lyonar. It was already pretty much dead after the nerf of Windlbade Adept but with Tiger getting hit I think that chapter is truly over for Lyonar. The king is dead, long live the king, I say. Second, the changes to Vanar seem very significant because the change to Frostburn is going to make swarm more likely to stick against Vanar and the nerfs to their removal means bigger minions might get slightly more of a chance to shine (as long as their Attack remains lower than their Health anyway because of Magmar).
Finally, Excelsious is moving into the Core Set, could CPG be trying to actually make it viable? Is it going to be easier to run if CC sees relatively less play? Between Martyrdom and Aperion’s Claim it should be possible to survive to 9 Mana, is that going to count for anything? I don’t expect so, but I thought it was interesting that CPG doesn’t want to give up on it. I’m happy Sunforge Lancer is going to stick around though.
I think the upcoming Lyonar competitive scene is going to be dominated by swarm and Mech decks. Zeal/Bond decks will play second fiddle and traditional Heal decks will probably drop off the map entirely due to the lack of support and the continued existence of Lavaslaher and Flawless Reflection. I expect a swarm deck to be Tier 1 and the rest of Lyonar to languish until rotation at least.
I do think we got a nice selection of good cards this time around with Surgeforger and Dauntless Advance opening up some real powerful avenues of play. I’ll probably be laddering with Mech, Zeal and/or Artifact decks most of the time I play Lyonar, dipping into the Brometheus-style swarm deck on occasion. I think Swarm is a legitimate archetype that requires a lot of skill to pilot well so if things turn out as I predict I won’t be too bummed out overall. But honestly, I just want to play Healyonar without feeling delusional so I’m planning on trying a bunch of stuff out there.
What do you think? What does the way forward look like for Lyonar?