At first, Legends of Runeterra can feel like a bit of a mystery. What are these phases for? What do these spells do? When do I cast them to make them work? The game’s deck building is just another one of those lingering questions. For some it’s a chore, trawling through hundreds of cards, trying to work out how they relate to each other, especially when you’d just rather battle. But you can’t take the deck out of the deck builder.
Finding synergy between cards, adding those cards to your deck, and using them appropriately in battle can seem a little daunting, but it is an essential part of the deck building experience. The good news is there’s a deck out there for everyone.
Whether that’s the best budget decks, for those who want little spend and maximum effect, the best beginner decks, for those just starting, or the best decks in general, the recognised cream of the crop, and top of the meta. Let us give you a helping hand with our list of the best Legends of Runeterra decks.
You can use the following links below to get to the section of the guide that interests you the most.
Unless you’ve played an absolute ton of Legends of Runeterra, chances are that a few of the phrases we use in this guide won’t make a lot of sense. To help, we’ve put together a bit of a dictionary that explains what each of these terms mean:
- Scout: Lets you attack first with these units, allowing you to attack twice overall.
- Challenger: When you attack, these cards can choose which enemy card blocks them.
- Last Breath: This effect occurs when the card is destroyed.
- Tough: Damage inflicted to this unit is reduced by one per attack.
- Barrier: A shield which stops a single attack.
- Quick Attack: This unit attacks before its opponent.
- Stun: Prevents a unit from acting this turn.
- Elusive: These units can only be blocked by other Elusive units.
- Recall: A card is returned to the hand, and any buffs are removed.
- Frostbite: Reduces a unit’s power to zero for that turn.
- Overwhelm: Any excess damage is dealt to the enemy nexus.
- Fearsome: Can only be blocked by a unit with three power or more.
- Lifesteal: The damage this unit inflicts directly heals your nexus.
These decks provide a safe pair of hands for those still learning the game, and are a great place to start.
Demacia are very good at buffing units, increasing their power and health on the battlefield. Buffing Bannermen is a fantastic deck that is not only pretty potent, but very simple to use. Neither Garen or Fiora’s abilities have a particularly great synergy, but both are basically about killing things to get strong, which is a lot easier to do when you’re buffed.
- Garen x3
- Fiora x3
- War Chefs x3
- Vanguard Bannerman x3
- Brightsteel Protectors x3
- Cithria the Bold x3
- Swiftwing Lancers x3
- Ranger’s Resolve x3
- Single Combat x3
- Judgement x1
For this you’ll want three Garen and Fiora, then buffing units like War Chefs, Vanguard Bannerman, Brightsteel Protectors, and Cithria the Bold. Swiftwing Lancers are also quite good, since when they die they grant you another Demacian elite in your hand. You can fill out the rest with other units that buff, have Tough, or provide Barrier.
With spells you’ll want Ranger’s Resolve for even more tough, Single Combat to isolate and pick off units, and Judgement, which synergises well with Garen and allows a single unit to strike all units in combat. Fill out the rest with buffs and Barrier.
Buff, Tough, and Barrier, and before you know it, you’re strong enough to end the round. There’s a reason this is in the beginner category. While this deck won’t win against highly competitive builds, it will get you pretty far.
Frostbite is a very strong ability, reducing a targeted enemy’s power to zero for a single turn, and also making them instantly killable to some specific units. This is one of our favourite deck constructions, because Frostbite has saved our bacon more than once in competitive scenarios, preventing the enemy from attacking and giving just one more turn to save the day. Sejuani and Ashe both synergise brilliantly with Frostbite-based abilities, and the fact that Ashe will upgrade after five Frostbites, which means units with zero power can’t block.
- Ashe x3
- Sejuani x3
- Icevale Archer x3
- Rimefang Wolf x3
- Icy Yeti x3
- Trifarian Gloryseeker x3
- Trifarian Assessor x3
- The Tuskraider x1
- Starlit Seer x3
- Avarosian Hearthguard x3
- Babbling Bjerg x3
- Brittle Steel x3
- Flash Freeze x3
- Harsh Winds x3
- Reckoning x3
- Culling Strike x3
You’ll want three Ashe and Sejuani, then units that benefit from, or apply, Frostbite. These are units such as Icevale Archers, Rimefang Wolves – who can instakill Frostbitten units – and Icy Yeti, who will Frostbite all enemies with three or less health when played. But you’ll need something to smash the ice, and here Noxus comes in handy. Trifarian Gloryseekers give you a cheap yet powerful source of Challenger, which works well with Frostbite, but they also synergise wonderfully with Trifarian Assessors. The Tuskraider is also always worth bringing since its ability to double the power and health of every unit in your deck is crazy.
Starlit Seers will also buff every time you play a Frostbite spell, Avarosian Hearthguard will buff your entire deck, and Babbling Bjerg will help you summon the cards you need to make an impact. When filling out the deck, it’s worth remembering that the Challenger ability works well with Frostbite, letting you pick off weakened enemies. In terms of spells you’ll want lots of Frostbite, with Brittle Steel, Flash Freeze, and Harsh Winds. While it’s expensive in terms of mana cost, Winter’s Breath has saved our skin more times than we can count. Any spells that also kill power weakened units, like Reckoning or Culling Strike, are worth bringing.
Icebreaker is a good beginner deck because Frostbite is easy to use. Essentially build your power, while stopping the enemy at every turn with Frostbite, and using it to pick off the highest power enemies in weakened states. It can be hard to find answers to a good Frostbite deck.
Only want the best of the best and willing to front the coin for it? These are the decks for you. You’ll absolutely demolish all of your opponents.
You could describe this as one of many Legends of Runeterra slim decks, as it only includes one champion, Draven. As you might guess from the name, this deck is for those who like to get aggressive from the get-go, prioritising direct damage spells, and units that directly damage the enemy nexus. On top of that, it uses Draven’s Spinning Axe to give you a slight edge in attacking or blocking.
- Draven x3
- Legion Saboteur x3
- Legion Vanguard x3
- Legion Grenadier x3
- Boomcrew Rookie x3
- Imperial Demolitionist x3
- Decimate x3
- Mystic Shot x3
- Get Excited x3
The headliner of this deck is the three Draven cards, then you should take advantage of the high aggression and power of the Noxians, especially the Legion cards like the Saboteur, the Rearguard, and the Grenadier, who all either damage the nexus with abilities, or have cheap power relative to their card cost. The Boomcrew Rookie, and the Imperial Demolitionist are also solid picks.
In terms of spells, you’ll want to bring Decimate, Mystic Shot, and Get Excited; basically the most cost-effective damage-based spells. You likely have empty spaces left over, and that’s where you can add the personal touch. As long as the cards relate to the central strategy of power and direct damage, go nuts.
It’s all in the name really. Most players take a little time to set up their strategy, so when you come out swinging they’ll already be on the back foot. By the time they can defend, you’ll be too far ahead for them to catch you.
The scout ability lets players attack with scout units only first, which means you can attack twice every turn phase. As you might imagine, this levels up Miss Fortune very quickly, causing her to both damage the enemy nexus, and damage units on the opposing side. The fact that most Demacian scouts also have Challenger, which allows them to lock opponents into a fight, means you can also choose your engagements.
- Quinn x3
- Miss Fortune x3
- Grizzled Ranger x3
- Loyal Badgerbear x3
- Fleetfeather Tracker x3
- War Chefs x3
- Brightsteel Protector x3
- Genevieve Elmheart x3
- Cithria the Bold x3
- Relentless Pursuit x3
- Ranger’s Resolve x3
As you could probably guess, for the Scout deck, you’ll want some scouts. Quinn is your best bet, as she also summons Valor when played, so you’ll want three of both her and Miss Fortune. Then you’ll want Grizzled Rangers (and some Loyal Badgerbears) for their amazing Last Breath summon effect, some Fleetfeather Trackers for a cheap source of Challenger, War Chefs for their support buff, and Brightsteel Protectors for providing Barrier to your important units. Genevieve Elmheart and Cithria the Bold are also good to both buff your troops and make them harder to defend against with Fearsome.
You won’t want too many spells since this is a unit heavy deck, but Relentless Pursuit is a good way to allow all of your troops the scout ability for a turn, and Ranger’s Resolve can give units Tough. In terms of filling out the remaining spaces, focus on units that buff, and either have Scout or Challenger abilities.
The Scout deck effectively focuses around relentless attacking, synergising Miss Fortune with your ability to attack twice. It also uses buffs, and Challenger, to pick off enemies, and win your chosen engagements.
Spells offer a huge amount of versatility in Legends of Runeterra, and Spell Control is very much what you’d imagine; flood your enemy with spells, closing off every strategy they try to put into practice with the range of options available to you.
- 3x Ezreal
- 3x Karma
- 3x Eye of the Dragon
- 3x Shadow Assassin
- 3x Mystic Shot
- 3x Statikk Shock
- 3x Thermogenic Beam
- 3x Deep Meditation
- 3x Chump Wump
- 1x Deny
For this spell-based deck, you’ll want, you guessed it, spells! Karma and Ezreal will give you lots to work with, Shadow Assassins will keep you drawing more, and Eye of the Dragon will give you a new fodder Lifesteal unit every turn you cast at least two. Chump Wump will also give you some melee meat as well as two nexus damage Mushroom Cloud spells.
In terms of spells themselves, you’ll want Mystic Shot for versatile damage, Statikk Shock for even more versatile damage, and Thermogenic Beam for, guess what, even more versatile damage. Deep Meditation is also a good pick for drawing more spells, reducing cost when you’ve cast two. Filled the rest with units that synergise well with spell casters, and also keep at least one Deny in your back pocket.
Spell Control is all about using damage to shut down the enemy at every turn, while making sure through your Champion and unit synergies that you always have plenty of spell options to choose from. There is no move that can’t be negated by a spell, and when you have a huge number to choose from, you can become nigh on immortal.
Not interested in spending money and want to make the most of the experience for free? These are the decks for you.
This deck focuses around the inherent synergy between Ionia and Noxus. It also only needs one champion, which makes it cheaper. Yasuo will attack any unit that is Stunned or Recalled, and if you play units that have those abilities, and that buff Yasuo, he can become pretty terrifying. If you also consider his ability to Quick Attack, he can be a real force to be reckoned with. Fae Bladetwirler also buffs with Stun and Recall, as well as having Quick Attack, and considering Ionia’s ability to field Elusive units (which can only be blocked by other Elusive units) this deck is a killer.
- Yasuo x3
- Fae Bladetwirler x3
- Shadow Assassin x3
- Herald of Spring x3
- Arachnoid Sentry x3
- Minotaur Reckoner x3
- Legion General x3
- Yone Windchaser x3
- Ravenous Flock x3
- Intimidating Roar x3
- Concussive Palm x3
- Will of Ionia x3
- Deny x3
For this you’ll want three Yasuo cards, three Fae Bladetwirlers, some Shadow Assassins for drawing cards, and Heralds of Spring to imbue Yasuo or Fae with Lifesteal. Your Stun is going to come mainly from Noxus, with Arachnoid Sentry, Minotaur Reckoner, Legion General, and Yone Windchaser.
You’ll also want your spells to follow suit. Ravenous Flock lets you damage Stunned enemies, Intimidating Roar lets you Stun all enemies with four power or less, and Concussive Palm applies Stun and lets you summon a unit (who you can then recall to get another Concussive Palm). For your Recall you’ll want Will of Ionia, and also Deny, as it lets you cancel enemy magic. If you have any spare spaces, fill them with Elusive, Stun, or Quick Attack units.
Unsurprisingly the focus of Yasuo stun is to Stun and Recall enemies, using his synergy with that ability to destroy enemy units. As that’s happening, you cut through the enemy defence with Quick Attacks and Elusive, while buffing Yasuo for the killing blow.
Death by spiders
The spiders in Legends of Runeterra are absurdly powerful. While weak at first, they can grow in number faster than any other unit, gain buffs which multiply their power, and give them Fearsome. In the time you’ve played two units, the entire enemy side might be filled with spiders.
But also the spiders of Noxus synergise brilliantly with the Shadow Isles, in particular, Kalista, who will grow stronger the more spiders who get killed by the enemy. This is also a good budget deck, since everyone starts the game with Elise, and a good contingent of her arachnoid followers.
- Elise x3
- Kalista x3
- Hapless Aristocrat x3
- Arachnoid Host x3
- Arachnoid Sentry x3
- House Spider x3
- Frenzied Skitterer x3
- Brood Awakening x3
- Crawling Senstation x3
- Vile Feast x3
- Glimpse Beyond x3
Any good spider deck starts with just that, spiders. You’ll want three Elise, some Hapless Aristocrats, some Arachnoid Hosts to buff, some Arachnoid Sentries for Stun, House Spiders to summon Spiderlings, and Frenzied Skitterers to buff you and de-buff the enemy. In terms of the remainder of your deck, Spiders have a high attrition rate, and so anything that buffs with allied deaths, like Kalista, or with unit numbers, is a good pick.
In terms of spells, you’ll want Brood Awakening, Crawling Sensation, and Vile Feast for even more spiders, as well as Glimpse Beyond for more cards. It’s also a good idea to keep Ruination in your back pocket, just in case the enemy gets too strong and you want to wipe the slate clean.
The central tactic is death by numbers, growing quickly, buffing your units, but also cannibalising your own spiders to draw more cards, or get even more spiders. All the while, your Shadow Isle’s units, and Kalista, are feeding on these deaths, and growing stronger.