HeyGuys, we’re back again with this week’s Player “Strength” Rankings. I want to start this post off with a little ideology on what makes a player strong.
In my opinion, a player’s strength in THL comes from 3 things. 1. The amount of points they get their team throughout the season, 2. The amount of points they give opponents throughout the season, and 3. The amount of the cap space they take from their team. So a player who was signed to a team with a cheap PR for their seed, gets their team more points than most, while giving their opponents less points than most, is going to be one of the stronger players in my eyes.
Rogue. It’s kind of intimidating. Whenever you play against it on ladder, their cards just go WHOOSH and they always have some giant lethal threat… but when you play it, your cards just sit there in your hand and you fall behind on board right away. How is it always good on the other side of the table but so clunky to play with?
Well, here’s the thing - Rogue is chronically misunderstood. The apparent game plan is very counterintuitive when one is behind the wheel and it often takes a big look at the overall game plan of the deck as well as some outside perspective to figure out how to win and how to not lose. In my case, the great @TheMVParker was gracious enough to provide me some coaching and it was truly eye opening.
The below are my brief observations from playing Rogue exclusively this season.
1. You are an aggro deck.
You are *not* midrange. You are *not* control. Your job is to present a steady stream of threats and force the opponent to run out of answers. Sometimes you will present unanswerable threats thanks to conceal - but while you will have high-damage burst turns, it’s a lot easier to just start carving chunks out of their life total on turn 1. (Thanks, small-time buc!)
2. You do not win the long game.
You have no taunt. You have no heal. You have burst but limited removal. Sap (one of your best cards) is only good for buying tempo for a turn or two. Conceal preserves your damage for a turn or two. Furthermore, if you lay out your entire deck and your opponent lays out their entire deck and you each play one card at a time, almost every deck in the meta will beat you. The strength of your deck is combining your cards and resources in a way that allows you to cheat mana costs and create large, unanswerable tempo swings.
This is true against aggressive decks as well. Shaman and pirate warrior have decks full of burn spells and independently powerful minions... and you have a bunch of coins and cold bloods. If you trade a lot and then expect to pull ahead in the late game, you will lose to 7/7s, jade golems, burn spells, or just piles of weapons. If you’re playing control, they will stabilize with life gain and defense.
3. The best defense is a good offense against the lower curve decks.
You are incredibly unfavored against pirate warrior and not favored against aggro shaman either. So how do you win? Make a big dude before them! Avoid trading and push face damage! You will not keep pace with a deck that has a bunch of burn spells that kill your few minions and/or your face if you let them continue to draw cards - and the average power level in aggro shaman is way higher than yours. But if you are able to get an early big questing or E dwin and pressure the board, the game is very winnable.
4. Your resources are best spent to gain tempo and board presence in most matchups and you should win a lot of games empty handed.
How valuable is 3 extra mana on turn 10? Both players have had 1+2+3+4+5+6+7+8+9+10 = 55 mana. Adding 3 gives you a 5.45% mana advantage.
What about on turn 2? Both players have had 1+2 = 3 mana and you have spent 50% more mana in the early game. So what does this tell you about the value of prep? Furthermore, what does this tell you about the value of Edwin Van Cleef???
Very few decks in the game have the ability to both respond to threats and develop their own like rogue does. If you present a steady stream of threats, your opponents will generally be unable to both kill them and play their own. If they play their own, hit them in the face and either sap their minions, play more of your own threats, or conceal your guys - preferably all three. If they kill your guys, keep playing more and your gadget should be lucrative.
5. Sometimes they have it when you go for it… but you should go for it anyway.
Renolock plays 1 card to kill a big questing or van cleef before turn 6 - blastcrystal potion. Sometimes they have it. The question you have to ask is - how do I win if I don’t go for it? Am I going to beat Renolock’s long game? You probably aren’t, and that means it’s probably right to go for it. The same might be true in the priest or warrior matchups. Sometimes it’s right to cold blood the patches early on to trade with a doomsayer and then hit face if they don’t kill it. The worst resources in your deck are the ones you never get to play, and you cannot account for every answer. Sometimes they have it and you lose.
6. Each situation is a little bit different - and you need to think before you play about how you’re going to win.
Rogue is complicated. You can win with concealed questings. You can win with an early small time buc into tomb pillagers. You can win with a crazy gadget turn into leeroy combo. You can win by running out questing on 3 if you don’t think they can deal with it. There are many possibilities best learned through experience but also there are non-intuitive lines of play that deserve stopping and thinking for a second before making your move.
7. Learning your matchups is vital for getting better with the deck.
Most of this is understanding your opponent’s removal options -- against some decks, they simply can’t kill a big questing or edwin early outside of 1 or 2 cards; e.g. renolock only has blastcrystal and siphon soul, druid only has 1 mulch. This is just one small example of matchup nuances to learn -- and your mulligan will frequently decide whether or not you win or lose.
Here’s the list I’d recommend:
Mulligans are still tricky for me, but here’s what I’ve been doing so far that generally works:
Always keep 100% of the time: Small time buc, Edwin, 1 Prep
Keep against aggressive decks (including the mirror) or on the coin: Backstab, Swashburglar
Keep if you have a hand that can play multiple spells for 0-1 mana: Questing (I like to keep Questing against aggressive strategies if I know it’s not just going to be a 3 mana 2/2)
Keep against anything except aggro shaman and pirate warrior: Shaku, Tomb Pillager
Keep against slower value decks (reno mage, jade druid, etc): Azure Drake
With luck, these guidelines will help you win some games - now is a great time to learn miracle rogue before they nerf small-time!
Feel free to leave questions, comments, and feedback below. Thanks for reading!
1. Pocahontas In Space (3-0, 59 Points)
Pocahontas In Space picked up another win this week to stay on top of the power rankings. They won 4 out of 5 matches and after two weeks are ahead of everyone else in points by 14. This week they look to continue their dominant streak against Lorewalker Nachos.
2. Lorewalker Nachos (2-1, 45 Points)
Lorewalker Nachos got another big win in Week 3. They won a close series against The Dog House. Captain Josseroo swept Dlineman, Qbert swept TheAnarchist, and Jameus beat Jimphilos. They added in 2 points from Silverwave and 1 point from AdumbusPrime. This week they look to beat the undefeated PIS.
3. Kawasaki Ninjas Rule (2-1, 46 Points)
Kawasaki Ninjas Rule are having a good followup to their Season 1 playoff run. But they ended up on the losing end when they played PIS last week. Inposition got a 3-0 victory over Gnetz but they were only able to add in 3 more points on the week. This week they look to rebound when they play Team Black Lotus.
4. Team Xnergy (1-2, 37 Points)
Team Xnergy picked up their first win of the season against Team Black Lotus. They took 4 out of 5 matches and put up an impressive 17 points on the week. They look to start to build some momentum as they face off against the Defias Henchmen this week.
5. XplosiveSheep (1-2, 39 Points)
The Season 1 champions picked up their first win on the season against the Defias Henchmen in Week 3. They picked up victories from Markshire, Captain BitBeaker, and Eridan. This week they take on The Dog House.
6. Defias Henchmen (1-2, 40 Points)
Defias came close to defeating XplosiveSheep. They got victories from KombatWombat and Captain Joe_HS. They added in 2 more points from Aroy and Starden. This week they look to rebound from the loss when they take on Team Xnergy.
7. Team Black Lotus (1-2, 35 Points)
Team Black Lotus struggled against Team Xnergy in Week 3. They got one win from Gemini and managed 1 point each in the other 4 matches. This week they look to turn it around as they take on Kawasaki Ninjas Rule.
8. The Dog House (1-2, 31 Points)
The Dog House played a good series against LoreWalker Nachos but ended up on the losing end. They got wins from Fenom and TheAvatar but managed only 1 point in the other 3 matches. This week they look to rebound as they take on XplosiveSheep.
The season is in full swing, which means that we have enough data to start the PPR. This PPR will be renamed “PPR by the Numbers”. It’s interesting to see another PPR and you’ll notice a lot of the same faces on both lists.
With this list, it’s based on three criteria; series won, game win percentage, and opponent win percentage. Series won is how many series you’ve won. For this first PPR, everyone on it is undefeated and are 3-0. Game win percentage is how many games you’ve won compared to how many games you’ve played overall. Opponent win percentage is how many series your opponents have won compared to how many they’ve played overall.
Season 5 has been very fun so far. We saw several new teams and new faces come into the league. Add to that the conference realignment, and it’s been a season full of surprises so far. We’re only 3 weeks into the season, and with another 6 to go I have no idea how this season is going to end. All I know is that I want to watch it happen to see who’s flag will fly when all is said and done. With all that said, let’s start the list at number 10.
WARNING: Incoming wall of text with no pictures (sorry Aroy!)
What’s up guys, this is PumbaasBFF here with a different kind of take on THL Player Power Rankings. While my team is busy trying to figure out if we want Leumer back as captain for Season 6, or if we want to go with a new face, I figured I’d use some of my time writing up some new content for our blog.
In the past we’ve had a Player Power Rankings blog provided by JerryDamage, and I hope that continues as well. My biggest problem with it, however, was that it was very based on statistical evidence, and left very little room to argue with. Stats are a cool thing to look at and read about, but I think a topic like Player rankings should be more up to a discussion, and thus I decided to come up with my own take on player rankings and present them to you so you can tell me how retarded I am.
This post will be very full of my opinions, but I will still be using data from this season to base my opinions from so you will more than likely still see some of the same players you would on a player rankings blog like Jerry’s.
Week 2 saw the beginnings of what I see as another very competitive season for SHL. We’ve seen 2 teams start to emerge as the leaders of each division, but there are teams that can make some moves to take back the top spot.
1. Pocahontas In Space (2-0, 40 Points) Staying in the top spot is Pocahontas In Space. PIS picked up their second win on the season against Team Xnergy in Week 2. They won all 5 matches and only lost 4 games throughout the series. Week 3 they have a tough match against another undefeated team, Kawasaki Ninjas Rule.
2. Kawasaki Ninjas Rule (2-0, 39 Points) Kawasaki Ninjas Rule are off to a great start in Season 2. They are 2-0 on the season and the leader of the Purple division. Week 2 they took 4 out of 5 matches against The Dog House. Delcevare, Klobbered, Scals44, and Merkin_Pie all scored wins. Inposition lost 2-3 to Dlineman. Week 3 they look to keep up the winning streak as they take have a big showdown against PIS.
3. Defias Henchmen (1-1, 30 Points) Week 2 the Defias Henchmen picked up their first win on the season when they took on Lorewalker Nachos. Captain HockeyBoyz3, Joe_HS, and SmokedSalmon picked up wins in their series with Starden adding in 2 points and KombatWombat adding in 1 point. Week 3 they take on XplosiveSheep who are still seeking their first win of the season.
4. Lorewalker Nachos (1-1, 27 Points) Lorewalker Nachos lost to the Defias Henchmen in Week 2. Captain Josseroo and Jameus were able to win their matches. However AdumbusPrime, Silverwave, and Qbert were only able to score 1 point in their matches. This week they look to get back on the winning track as they face off against The Dog House.
5. Team Black Lotus (1-1, 27 Points) Team Black Lotus got their first win on the season in Week 2 over XplosiveSheep. TonyMontana, Captain Force of Will, and JerryDamage picked up wins with Gemini adding in 2 points in her loss to VeganZombie. Week 3 they play against a Xnergy team looking to pick up their first win of the season.
6. The Dog House (1-1, 22 Points) The Dog House lost their Week 2 match against Kawasaki Ninjas Rule. They dropped 4 out of 5 matches. Dlineman won his match against Inposition to remain the only 500 PR player in SHL. Week 3 they look to pick up another win and get back on the right track when they take on Lorewalker Nachos.
7. XplosiveSheep (0-2, 23 Points) The Season One Champions are struggling to find a win in Season 2. Week 1 they lost to PIS and week 2 they lost to Team Black Lotus. Markshire and VeganZombie won their series. DirestBear lost a close one to TonyMontana 2-3. BitBeaker and Eridan each contributed 1 point each to make it a close match in the end. Week 3 they face the Defias Henchmen as they look to start their march back towards the playoffs.
8. Team Xnergy (0-2, 17 Points) Team Xnergy had a rough week in Week 2. They lost all 5 matches to PIS and only managed to score 4 points on the week. RedMarsh and Captain DexterHS scored 1 point each with ArcaneTHL losing a close match to RogueJT 2-3. Week 3 they play Team Black Lotus as they look to get their first win on the season.
After a busy holiday off season, we get back to some good Last Hero Standing games and kick off SHL Season 2. Season 1 saw us define the format and after a very close playoff race, XplosiveSheep were left as the last team standing. SHL Season 2 sees us expand to 5 person rosters and introduce some new teams to the mix, as well as new additions to our returning teams from Season 1. It's exciting to get back to playing games and I'm excited to see who'll end the season as our SHL Season 2 champion. So, let's get down to the heart of it and see how we rank after Week 1.
1. Pocahontas In Space (1-0, 17 points)PIS said that they were coming out strong this season and they picked up a big win Week 1. The duo of Cainge picked up victories along with PumbaasBFF to secure the match win for the week. Week 2 they have another challenge in Team Xnergy.
2. Kawasaki Ninjas Rule (1-0, 18 points)
One of the best team names in SHL started off Season 2 with a solid win over the Defias Henchmen. The KNR Season 1 lineup of Delcevare, Klobbered, and Merkin_Pie picked up wins to take the week. Week 2 they take on The Dog House.
3. The Dog House (1-0, 17 points)
The Dog House started off their SHL season with a solid win over Team Xnergy. SHL’s only 500 PR player, Dlineman, picked up a victory, along with newcomers Fenom and TheAvatar. This week they take on SHL veterans, Kawasaki Ninjas Rule.
4. Lorewalker Nachos (1-0, 18 points)
Lorewalker Nachos made their SHL debut with a victory over Team Black Lotus. Team captain Josseroo, AdumbusPrime, and Silverwave picked up victories to secure the win for the week. They face the Defias Henchmen this week.
5. XplosiveSheep (0-1, 11 points)
SHL Season 1 champs came out on the losing end Week 1. New additions Eridan and Markshire picked up victories on the week. Captain Bitbeaker lost a close series 2-3 to Mainge and VeganZombie also picked up 1 point in his loss to PumbaasBFF. They look to rebound in Week 2 as they face off against Team Black Lotus.
6. Team Xnergy (0-1, 13 points)
Team Xnergy lost a very close series to The Dog House in Week 1. Former THL commissioner JediNinja and team captain DexterHS picked up wins on the week. Samoo and ArcaneTHL both lost close series 2-3 and RedMarsh added 1 point in his loss to Fenom. Week 2 they look to make a statement as they take on PIS.
7. Defias Henchmen (0-1, 12 points)
The Henchmen lost a close one Week 1. KombatWombat and captain Hockeyboyz3 picked up victories with SmokedSalmon and Starden both losing close series 2-3. This week they look to pick up their first win as they take on Lorewalker Nachos.
8. Team Black Lotus (0-1, 10 points)
Team Black Lotus came out on the losing end Week 1. Captain Force of Will and JerryDamage walked away with wins. ArthurRhodes and TonyMontana added in 1 point each from their series. They look to come back and make some noise when they face SHL Season 1 champions, XplosiveSheep.
The ban process can be a little intimidating to a new player! Below is a visual guide to how to ban decks and complete the pre-match procedures without a hitch.
Well boys and girls, the divisions for Season 5: Factions have been announced, and boy, do we have a lot of drama to dive into. Before we do that, let’s clarify a few things about this blog:
So let’s dive into the entire event before we get specific. Has there ever been a more fun Tavern Talk episode? I consider myself a qualified expert on the subject, and I’m going to say no. The drama, the tension, the excitement, and the league-wide celebration was incredible. Here’s to hoping this becomes a THL tradition! Alright - let’s go.
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