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The January FiveShards Weekly Series Wrap-up

As of this past Sunday, we have finished the fourth week of our new weekly series where we have three weekends in the client of Swiss constructed then finish with an invite-only (based on accrued points) tournament. Over the course of the last week, we were able to give out 100,000 in platinum—roughly $1,000 in in-game currency—in addition to booster packs to both participants and streamers. February tournaments start tomorrow, so let’s take a look at how the series has unfolded over the past few weeks.

If you are unfamiliar with the FiveShards Weekly Series, you can go here to get more information. Importantly, it is a free-to-enter weekly tournament that gives out platinum and boosters as prizes. Anyone can play and you can really test your ability to go up against some of the best players in the game. New players who are just now checking out Hex should certainly join up to get some time playing competitive Hex PVP!

To celebrate the end of the month, I will briefly detail the shifts in the meta over the last month.

Week 1

The first set of tournaments occurred on the busiest weekend we have ever had for HexTCG constructed play. There was a constructed Invitational Qualifier, the FiveShards Cup Series Diamond Cup (hosted by Tecnophi), and two FiveShards Weekly Series (FSWS) events for players to attend. With the staggered schedule, we had over 100 people attend each event and had a pretty solid weekend for competitive Hex. For each of the weekly tournaments we only have the decklists of the winning players, but we do get a solid idea of how the meta is shaping up for these weekly events. On the North American side of things, we had two mono-Blood decks in the top 8, two Winter Moon decks, two Ruby/Wild ramp decks, a Diamond/Wild, and a Blood/Diamond deck. This, to me, is a diverse meta for a format that is several months old; however, the European meta makes the field even more complicated. In addition to also having two mon-Blood decks in the top 8 (BoSMopar making it in both series), we get two mono-Ruby decks (with KingGabriel piloting some Baby Yetis to a top 8), a Winter Moon deck, a Ruby/Wild ramp deck, a Blood/Diamond deck, and an Azurefate-cannon deck making the top 8. In both events, mono-Blood took down the tournament with BoSMopar (decklist) and Wolzarg (decklist) claiming victory. While having a set out for this long may imply a settled meta, we learn by week three that there are still more changes to come.

Public decklists from this week on hexmeta.

 

Week 2

Week 2 provided one of our lower-attended weeks for this month due to the final IQ gaining over 200 players, but it was a solid showing regardless. Mono-Blood came back to strongly affect the meta in the second week where we saw half of the North American top 8 go Blood. The other decks included Ruby/Sapphire Azure-cannon, Blood/Diamond, Zorzym’s Blood/Sapphire, and a sole Winter Moon deck. Unfortunately, due to the small sample size of the European tournament, some of the decks are missing from hexmeta for this week in Europe. We know that there were at least two mono-Blood decks, two Blood/Diamond decks, and a Ruby/Wild; but sadnessa’s deck, the winner, is missing from this week’s data. Voices’ BD deck (decklist) comes in 5th place in Europe while CaptJack’s Zorzym (decklist) also made a top 8 cut.

Public decklists from this week on hexmeta.

 

Week 3

After Sadolution took down the final IQ with the Dragonborn’s Diamond/Wild build, it quickly made its way to the FSWS the following week. In North America, 4 of the top 8 decks were Diamond/Wild and 3 of the top 4 were those powerful Diamond/Wild decks. Two mono-Blood and two Ruby/Wild decks also competed for the top spots, but were unable to overcome the dominance of the new decklist. The players in the European weekly either did not get the memo, or got enough of it that DW was not nearly as popular in the top spots of the tournament. There were five mono-Blood decks, a Ruby/Sapphire Bertram deck, and one single Diamond/Wild deck made it all the way to the final spot as piloted by SpookyBoogy. The two winners of each weekly, Spookyboogy (decklist) and Kindmime (decklist), are who to check out for the most recent iteration of that deck on hex meta. This set us up for the top 16 in both finales!

Public decklists from this week on hexmeta.

 

Finale

32 players across two brackets competed to take down the finale in the Europe and North American last Sunday. You can find the list of players and the brackets for the Europe and North America in their respective links. The public decklist of each participant is available on this spreadsheet.

In terms of the finale meta breakdown, across both brackets, we had:

mono-Blood: 11
Diamond/Wild: 8
Winter Moon Control: 4
Zorzym Blood-Sapphire: 1
Azure-cannon: 1
Ruby/Wild Ramp: 1
Ruby/Sapphire Robots: 1

Despite the previous two weeks showing the power of Diamond/Wild, mono-Blood was still the favorite deck going into each of the single-elimination, top 16 tournaments. Both tournaments ended in a split, so we do not have a clear winner in the meta contest, but in context of the top 4 (all places earning platinum), we have the following results:

Europe’s top 4:
Diamond/Wild (1st – RebelliousNoob)
Ruby/Wild Ramp (2nd – Chadatog)
Diamond/Wild (3rd – Azzis)
mono-Blood (4th – Wolzarg)

North America’s top 4:

Diamond-Wild (1st – Kindmime)
mono-Blood (2nd – Thanatose)
mono-Blood (3rd – BoSMopar)
mono-Blood (4th – Kolgor)

While these results are dependent upon the seedings and the matchups, it is clear that the two decks to beat are Diamond/Wild and mono-Blood. This weekend, may prove a new shape to the meta if someone has found the kryptonite to both decks.

 

Final Thoughts

Thanks to everyone who has made this series fantastic. We average nearly 200 players per week and this is quickly becoming the place to go to figure out how the meta is shaping up. So, as usual, there are some specific people who really made everything happen. First, I want to give a special shoutout to the casting team that did the livestream of the tournament on Sunday. covering 16 games with 32 players gave them some ample material to work with and Pentachills, JadiimJedi, and Mokog stepped up to the plate to give you coverage of this event. Second, thanks to Hex Entertainment for making the events happen and Chark for giving us the opportunity to run them. Without their help, they would not happen.

That is it for this month. I hope to do a similar wrap up in February as well. As I publish this, we are wrapping up the first weekend in February with some interesting contenders. The next two weeks will be bringing in a ton of new players and ideas about what the best decks in the format are.

 

Michael Allen is a competitive HexTCG player, co-host of the 2 Turns Ahead podcast, and founder and moderator of the Hex Subreddit.

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