Welcome to my controversial list of the top 5 worst classes post-IOM. Maybe it can generate some discussion of archetypes or ways that these classes could be made better, or you can just flat out tell me I'm wrong. Either way, let's get to it.
Starting things off at #5 is Monk. There's not much to say here really except when you look at any of it's archetypes, they are pretty much inferior to other classes.
Let's look at the two most viable archetypes – Token Monk and Mid Monk.
By all means, both are viable decks.
However, Token Monk just seems like a worse version of Sader. It doesn't offer the stickiness that Token Mage might, and Gamblers are just a riskier version of Eastmarch. The killing off of Skulk means that it can no longer be an insane high roll machine. It used to get off to some of the fastest starts in TESL history but that is no longer the case. Mournhold Traitor, Pawnbroker, Cliff Racer, Ahnassi – whatever power cards you can think of, are just not enough to justify playing this version of Token over others. And if you insist on Cliff Racers in an aggro yellow deck, just play Hlaalu (or read on: Mid Monk).
Mid Monk is an interesting archetype that has a couple of wincons going for it. Monk Strike/Swift Strike or old school Haafingars/prophecy. One problem here lies on the nerf of Skulk. Curse/Skulk/Leaflurker was so essential in variations of the Strike package in particular that killing it also meant the killing of Monk. There's no effective way to deal with Warded creatures or have a great tempo play from behind. You can build it without Skulks but it seems like that would just be an inferior product compared to what it once was.
So it seems like if you insist on playing Monk anyways, your best bet might be a more prophecy dense build with a wincon like Haafingars. Or you could still try the strike package anyways. Without Leaflurkers though, the deck lacks any hard removal, naturally doesn't have silences, and Penitus doesn't lend itself well outside of more Token aggro decks – so you can find yourself in a real tough spot quickly if you're staring down a Mighty Conjuring that just completely stuffed up your lane.
And Control Monk? Lol. On to #4.
Archer doesn't have a lot going for it when there are bigger, badder classes out there. Control Archer is a great deck at suppressing aggro, which is why this class didn't find itself at a worse spot on the list. It does have the luxury of being one of the only classes to be able to use factotums if it does want to go that route. But the archetype gets obliterated by most other control decks. Rage Warrior essentially does the same thing but better, and can more often rage from hand to close out games. Control Tribunal will either deck you or just play enough of their own big threats that you can't deal with them.
For other archetypes, Midrange Archer has been dead for a long time. And I mean on that note, Midrange anything has long been suffering, with the exception of BM. Most Sorcerer lists would fall under aggro at this point, and a Mighty Conjuring or two aren't going to change that.
Aggro Archer was always tier 3 or 4 at best, capable of high rolling and pulling off some nice wins, but the Skulk/Firebrand combo is dead. The quality of the consistency that Aggro Archer brings doesn't make it even an option when you have Aggro Hlaalu to choose from in Comparison.
Market Archer? Let's not even go there – the deck has been inadvertently nerfed maybe 5 times now, so let's just forget that ever happened.
Has this class ever found its identity outside of meme-tier Conscription decks? As the red-headed step child of both Crusader and Warrior (sorry Spellsword), you'd think that Redoran would be a force to be reckoned with. Seriously, who doesn't work Sower of Revenge in Crusader?
Unfortunately, it falls just a bit short. It has seen some tournament success with aggro variants before, but building it seems like a tricky task indeed. You just can't have it all; so do you want the aggro token-y nature of Sader, or the big bad purple creatures found in Warrior? The class as a whole is just so inconsistent that maybe we should just throw caution to the wind and start building 100 card variations to see what sticks (jokes).
Seriously, is there anything that Mage can do that Tribunal doesn't do better? One might argue Token Mage would be better but honestly I might even dispute that. Token Tribunal at least has the surprise factor on ladder, access to strong tools like Negation and Archcanon (seriously strong in this archetype), and can still pull off a 73%-75% Resolute Ally. It's a bit less consistent but it can make up for it with huge increases in relative power of cards comparatively.
But Control? Not a shot in hell, Tribunal wins here all day.
Midrange or Aggro? It's hard to see how anything Mage has going would beat the insane package that purple lends Tribunal; even Catapults in a 75 card deck just increase its tremendously and lead to blow out wins in some % of your matches. Other cards like Wind Keep, Haunting Spirit, and Bleakcoast lend to it's success. Oh and did we say Negation?
I so, so badly wanted to put Mage as the worst class but at least it has a few archetypes going for it. Spellsword has literally nothing (sorry Bones). Nothing new here. Its best deck is likely Token Spellsword, with some neutral-focused decks not too far behind.
Still, as a class, it's missing out on 3 characteristic features that other decks have: reach, pings, and card draw.
Spellsword found some success in tournaments late in 2018, both with more Token focused decks (with some variations going all the way up to Bone Colossus) and others playing Shrine Control like plzdonhakme.
In the end though, this class didn't really get much in the way of new tools from IoM. Maybe we can see some innovation on this front, but it's not likely.
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