Understanding Tournament Play - Line Up Construction by Aya Senpai

Understanding Tournament Play - Line Up Construction by Aya Senpai

Line Up Construction

In the last article (which you can find here), we talked about the importance of tech cards and how they can affect how your deck performs in a tournament. This time around, I would like to talk about how you should construct your line ups for tournaments.

The way you construct your lineups in tournaments is very dependant on what format you are playing in. In the west, we tend to favor the 3 deck / 1 ban format as our primary format so for the purposes of this article, we will stick to that. There are actually several different ways to place approach your lineups. Here are some of them

Take 3 decks you are very consistent and knowledgeable of.

This one is pretty good because it plays very much into your personal knowledge of your deck and the plays you should be making on any given turn. This one also doesn’t have to play so much into the metagame as the other options which can give you a little edge.

The weakness to this particular style is that it is common that people often bring this type of mindset to tournaments regularly and this can make you predictable to certain players. Back in season 2 of the Shadowverse Open, Akamarured (Second place at last years WGP) once said that the reason he was able to do so well was because of the round robin format that allowed him to study the playstyles of his opponents. In that style, it can make things very difficult for you as people can know how to properly prepare for you if you are predictable.

Take 2 decks that you want to play and bring 1 “Auto Ban” deck.

So an Auto Ban deck is a deck that well, gets automatically banned because your opponent doesn’t want to deal with it. These decks tend to be the “tier 0” deck that people dread facing. In more balanced metas it is much more difficult to apply this because that format might not have a “tier 0” deck.

You can still apply this if there is a really strong deck in the format that people simply hate fighting against. However, it isn’t really promised to you that your opponent will ban out that deck and may even have prepared their line up to beat that specific deck should they have to fight against it.

Playing 3 decks that you like.

This is more for the people who just want to enter a tournament and have fun with their favorite decks. This is by no means the most competitive way to go about it but there certainly isn’t a rule against it. Not to mention, it also doesn’t mean that you cannot come back and completely crush a tournament with unexpected line ups. It has happened many times in the past!

Play the Metagame

This is what most competitive players do. The metagame for Shadowverse more often than not will change from week to week. One deck will be super popular one week and then the next week that deck gets completely hated out and everyone curbstomps it. This does require some anticipatory skills on your part to understand which decks will be used the following tournaments.

A good way to properly learn the metagame is to play in community tournaments. Community events (which you can find at allow you to get a feel for the decks that other people are playing and can give you valuable practice against those decks. They are incredibly informative on the metagame to help increase your knowledge should you want to enter the bigger events.

Final thoughts

Preparing for a tournament requires a lot of time, practice, dedication, research and most importantly, patience. Understanding these things can help you figure out the way you want to build your line up for the tournament. If your line up failed, look at the deck that was the weak link and think about ways that you can improve your lineups moving forward. Until next time!

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