Another week, another SVO. This time we got the pleasure of playing and watching the Unlimited Format. Unlimited is a relatively unexplored format in the West since there are not large-scale Unlimited tournaments. This makes it so that there are many viable decks in Unlimited and rewards a player for their familiarity with a given class. This is not to say that the format doesn’t have any dominant decks. Unlimited has a few boogiemen you need to be prepared to deal with.
In PAM Tempo Storm took home 1st place once again. This week TS Potwasher piloted White Wolf, Mid-Range Shadow, and Elana Haven. Mid-Range Shadow and Elanas were both popular decks leading up to the weekend. Although White Wolf hadn’t been popular during the months leading up to this SVO, the inclusion of White Wolf made Potwasher’s lineup more robust.
For EU, Disastra (DIS) Sheepy won with a similar lineup to Potwasher’s. Like Potwasher, Sheepy took Forest and Shadow. However, the decklists had key differences. Sheepy had a dedicated OTK Roach Forest, a different Mid-Range Shadow build that fell back on Lord Atomy and Deathly Tyrant, and Daria.
Class Popularity in PAM: 76 Players total
Class Popularity in EU: 51 Players total
In previous weeks of the SVO there was more consistency with the most popular decks. Normally, the deck in the #1 or #2 position held their position in both regions. This time there was no such consistency other than Rune and Shadow making top 2. This shows how Unlimited is still open and has room for growth.
Rune: Featured Deck piloted by TK Dubski: https://tinyurl.com/ydeomfa9
Overall Win Rate: 53.5%
In Unlimited, Rune has many different ways it can be built — all of them are formidable decks. Due to an abundance of archetypes, it makes sense for Rune to make it into the top 3. Between Dimension Shift, Daria, and Dirt Rune it is virtually impossible to build a lineup that is prepared for all three while remaining competitive against the rest of the field.
Shadow: Featured Deck piloted by DIS. Onion Sheep: https://tinyurl.com/ybz5t4fp
Overall Win Rate 53%
With Demonlord Eachtar’s nerfs recently being reversed it is no surprise to see such a resurgence in Unlimited Mid-Range Shadow. The deck can play an on-the-board beat down game and with the help of Eachtar it can close the game out or pull itself back onto the board on turn 7. Shadow has access to a few different solid builds, the main thing that seperates them is if they opt to play Lord Atomy or not.
Forest: Featured Deck piloted by TS Potwasher: https://tinyurl.com/ybop6bo6
Overall Win Rate: 52.5%
Some of the most iconic decks in Unlimited are OTK style roach decks. Whether an aggressive build that splits the combo or a slower deck focused on one-turn-kills there is room for decision-making. Roach is the type of deck that rewards players for familiarity with specific lists play-style. Roach has the ability to end games without giving opponents opportunities to interact barring warding and healing.
Blood: Featured Deck piloted by Shadow Shadet: https://tinyurl.com/yacl5g47
Overall Win Rate: 48.5%
Over the weekend there were two versions of Blood that had reasonable success. One popular type was the all-in Vengeance deck that relies on storm damage from Dark General and Emeralda. The other popular Blood archetype was Darkfeast Bat. Both of these decks have similar builds. The difference is how quickly they plan on getting into Vengeance and how integral Vengeance is in the deck’s success.
Dragon: Featured Deck piloted by LiL Raindrop: https://tinyurl.com/ydxbqo6r
Overall Win Rate 43%
After Bloodcraft, there was a significant dip in win rate. In Unlimited, Dragon enjoys all of its best ramp cards as well as the Sahaquiel package. This week’s Featured deck stays away from the ramp package. The deck relies on some of Dragons most aggressive cards and ends the game with high-power storm finishers like Dark Dragoon Forte and Phoenix Rider Aina.
Sword: Featured Deck piloted by TK Dubski: https://tinyurl.com/y7l87bwl
Overall Win Rate 42%
In Unlimited, the two most popular decks for Sword are full-on Aggro Sword and its slower counterpart, Mid-range Sword. In a tournament format, people tend to be less willing to play an Aggro Sword deck that relies on a fast-opening hand since the players don’t have many decisions throughout a game. Mid-range Sword has a similar plan to Aggro sword though more focused on board-control. Between cards like Arthur and Dragon Knights Mid-range Sword has a lot of endgame power. Both style Sword decks have access to Round Table Assembly — a card that helps you flavor your deck in what it is trying to do.
Haven: Featured Deck piloted by TS Potwasher: https://tinyurl.com/y6udmza8
Overall Win Rate 37%
This weekend Haven was relatively unsuccessful but worth watching. Although Haven had a low win rate it did win PAM. The version of Haven that found success was Potwashers dedicated Elana build. It is possible that Potwasher found success because his lineup was tailored to best take advantage of Elanas. It is also possible that the other Haven decks that were played were simply not well-constructed. Potwasher has shown that Elana Haven is a force to fear in the Unlimited format.
Portal: Featured Deck piloted by HSK Symphonus https://tinyurl.com/y8vr8bou
Overall Win Rate: PAM: 0% EU 75%
Portalcraft is the most interesting thing to happen over the weekend. In PAM, not a single person played a game with portal, leaving it with a very misleading 0% win rate. In EU, Portal played 12 games total, leaving Portal with an incredibly small but promising sample size. Could it be that players are sleeping on Portal in Unlimited? Artifact Portal is already a strong deck in Rotation and now that the class has had a few expansions it may soon be reaching a break-out point in Unlimited. Only the future will tell.
The next State of SVO will be in 2 weeks after the next SVO. Then we will see a return to the Rotation format for NA and EU followed up by SEAO playing Take 2.
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Last weeks State of SVO: https://hallowedsky.net/2018/07/31/the-state-of-svo-brigade-week-3/