We have a newly rotated format and so I'm sure many of you are wondering how best to approach building a deck for it. More specifically, I imagine many are thinking about how to build a Rune deck. One thing I want to go over is the basic steps and thoughts that should go into building a deck on both a basic level, and on a competitive level.
As we saw in the World's New Frontiers event, old rulers are not gone. The big powerhouses will still be Time Spinning Witch, with some Gill, Ayu, and others sprinkled in. There could be other possibilities that crop up, but mainly we are dealing with those.
If you wish to build a deck around an old ruler, it's pretty simple at this point. Decks in Reiya Cluster are still operating on a tribal level. This means that the cards that are meant for those decks tend to be in those decks. The cards that will fluctuate are only a couple and can come down to personal preference or what is best at countering the current top tier deck. For example, Time Spinning Witch still runs her time cards/stones, Laurites, etc.
New Rulers on the other hand are both easier, and harder to construct. The main thing I'll go over today is the construction of your Rune deck. This is vital because you are unable to sideboard, meaning you are stuck with whatever is in that deck regardless of who or what you are playing. The best way to look at it (that will become more applicable as more sets release) is what cards do you need to win?
If you had to sit down and think about what you need to win in say, a burn deck, what would it be?
Let's use an example:
I have a red aggro deck that swings in with big creatures, none of which have flying. It consists of low cost/health resonators that can swing early, and middle-cost resonators that swing mid/late if the game lasts that long. Those resonators hitting the field are a given, the only thing blocking me from winning, is literally my opponent blocking me.
Knowing this, I'll put in my Rune deck cards that guarantee my pathway to victory.
A burn spell that clears, or heavily diminishes, my opponent's field of resonators is the first thing to look at. This gets rid of not only blockers but possible attackers that could kill my low health resonators. It also gets around the problem of my resonators not having flying, since they don't need flying if my opponent has nothing to block with.
A Rune with single target damage. This accomplishes a similar effect to above, but helps with those bigger resonators. A lot of the time it doubles as damage to your opponent, which helps bring their health down much quicker (you usually don't want games to last too long in heavy aggro decks).
A Rune with some sort of buffing mechanism. Once again helping push that last bit of damage through can mean the game, and this is pretty straight forward on how it helps.
The other Runes can be adjusted how you see fit. But you can see with just those 3 Runes you have helped secure a possible win condition. You can still run those types of cards inside of your main deck, but you don't have to ever worry about coming up short in your draws. You could even not run them in your main deck at all, in hopes your consistency and countering is good enough to survive in a more solid main deck build.
This type of consistency and fixing what you can do in a game is what will push the old rulers out much quicker than we've seen in previous clusters, with maybe one exception. All you need to do is look at your Rune deck objectively and ask, not what is cool or seemingly good to put in it, but what is absolutely necessary to win. Even though you have a decent amount of freedom in what to use, you should still use a lot of discretion, treating it like you would deck building your main deck and coming up to 45 cards. Once you get that high you start to really question what cards are necessary and not, and that's the level of thinking you should have on each Rune deck card.
Another condition to take into consideration when building your deck is your Divinity. Now obviously there will be exceptions, but the best path to take when starting your Rune deck building is to keep it at 10 Divinity. By this I mean the sum total cost of everything face down. This makes it easy to calculate your Divinity while flipping cards, because you will never have to worry about it. But it also adds value.
Card value is very important in card games. If you can have 4 cards instead of 3, you are at an advantage. The power level of Rune cards allows them to be effectively played within the 10 Divinity limit without sacrificing power advantage, but heavily gaining card advantage. While not something strict to abide to, it is something to keep in mind while constructing that Rune deck.
Hope this random bit of information proves useful. Enjoy!