How to Play Lurkers
Hey guys NicMakesPlays here and today I’m going to go over one of the new decks of the expansion, Lurk.
Lurk is a brand new archetype that was introduced in Rise of the Underworlds with the addition of Rek’Sai, Pyke, and the Lurk keyword mechanic.
During Patch 2.11, the archetype had a 52.9% win rate over more than 592k matches according to our Meta Stats.
In this guide, I’ll be covering the deck’s win conditions, mulligans, matchups, and more.
Deck Code: CEBAKBAGAEBAGBIPAYCAOAITIFCEUUACAICAOFSFAECAMBYBAECAMBA
We’ve covered a ton of other decks recently so be sure to check out our previous deck guides!
The goal of this deck is to use the Lurk keyword to buff all your units, Pyke to control the board, and Rek’Sai or a big swing to finish the game.
The expected turn to win the game with this deck is around Turn 8.
In this deck, you want to mulligan for units to attack for in the early game.
If you go 1st you want your 1 drops to start hitting Lurk, if you go 2nd you want your 1 drops or Aspiring Chronomancer to Predict and hit Lurk.
If you have Call the Pack + Pyke/Rek’Sai you can also keep that as well if you already have your 1 drop to attack with.
Snapjaw Swarm is also a good keep if you are going 1st and already have your 1 drop, because you can attack on turn 1 for a Lurk Trigger and then Snapjaw Swarm on turn 2 for a Lurk trigger as well.
Card Choices & Key Synergies
Sharkling / Xer’sai Hatchling
Sharkling and Xer’Sai Hatchling are your 1 drops of the deck. These cards allow you to begin activating Lurk right away by attacking on turn 1 and 2. You want to always keep these cards in the mulligan so all your Lurkers start gaining the Lurk buff right away.
Aspiring Chronomancer / Xer’sai Caller
These cards allow you to Predict to hit your Lurk, Pyke, or Rek’Sai.
Hitting Pyke is the best thing you can hit with Lurk so you want to prioritize that, then Rek’Sai would be next, then a regular Lurk. These cards help the deck’s consistency and power levels by allowing you to more reliably hit Lurk as well as your powerful Lurk effects from your Champions.
On turns you aren’t attacking, you can pick cards such as Bone Skewer to help deal with threats, Ruthless Predator to help level Rek’Sai next turn, or strong units such as Xerxa’Reth Undertitan. Another thing to note is non-Lurker units still activate Lurk, so if you attack with Aspiring Chronomancer Lurk is still activated if you hit a Lurk card on top of your deck.
Bone Skewer / Ruthless Predator
These are two of your non-Lurk cards which allow you to deal with all kinds of scenarios. Bone Skewer is your source of removal in the deck to deal with threats or be used in response to removal spells for value. You can use Bone Skewer on Pyke to help level him, and use Bone Skewer on Pyke/Rek’Sai to put them on top of your deck before you attack.
This allows you to remove a blocker and also gain a powerful Lurk effect from your Champions. Ruthless Predator makes leveling Rek’Sai extremely easy. Rek’Sai is usually hard to level without assistance from Ruthless Predator or Shaped Stone to buff her attack, but Shaped Stone comes with a huge deckbuilding cost which includes adding more Landmarks + non-Lurk cards to get the +3|+1 bonus.
Ruthless Predator lets you level up Rek’Sai without this deckbuilding cost, remove enemy threats by giving them Vulnerable, and go for game with Overwhelm units such as Rek’Sai, Dunebreaker, and Xerxa’Reth Undertitan.
Pyke / Rek’Sai
Pyke and Rek’Sai are what make this deck have huge power spikes. Hitting a regular Lurk makes the deck okay. But, the deck truly shines when you can get a Death From Below to your hand or give all your Lurker units +2|0 from Rek’Sai. Every time you attack you have a chance to hit one of these cards, as well as having the ability to Predict for these and swing the game in your favor.
Death From Below is a 4 mana Fast spell that can kill a unit and also summon Pyke. This is immense value for a 4 cost spell and is extremely hard for your opponent to play around. Pyke’s level up can be a win condition by itself in the form of clearing your opponent’s field, even on their own turn.
You can even use Death From Below with a Pyke on the field to have two Pykes on the field and easily achieve their level-ups through attacking or with Bone Skewer.
Rek’Sai gives all your Lurkers +1|0 when Lurked with on top of the regular Lurk buff. She also lets you go for game with her Overwhelm, and refuels your hand. If you level Rek’Sai you are almost sure to win the game through her huge stats, Overwhelm and refuel for only 3 mana.
Bloodbait / Snapjaw Swarm
Bloodbait and Snapjaw Swarm allow you to Lurk on your opponent’s turn and use Rek’Sai’s Lurk effect multiple times. The way you use Bloodbait is you combo it with Rek’Sai. The way you do this is you attack with Rek’Sai on top of your deck (Via Predict, Call the Pack or naturally) and all your Lurkers gain +2|0.
Then, you use Bloodbait so the card you draw for the turn is Snapjaw Swarm. This leaves Rek’Sai still on top of your deck so when you attack with Snapjaw Swarm you get Rek’Sai’s Lurk effect again. This leads to really easy Rek’Sai level-ups as well as buffing all your Lurker units multiple times.
This deck is generically good across the board. The way you win with this deck reliably is by having an early game unit to attack with to start activating Lurk. Predicting Pyke helps a lot since Death from Below is huge value for a 4 cost fast spell.
In the mid-game, your units should start becoming beefy and hard to deal with. You have Bone Skewer and Ruthless Predator to remove enemy threats while you continue applying pressure with your strong units.
A Pyke level-up can clear the entire enemy field while Rek’Sai/Overwhelm units can go for game. If the game happens to go to turn 8+ then you can use Jaull Fish to clear the enemy board and win the game from there.
Bad matchups are decks with tons of removal and answers for Rek’Sai. A perfect example of this is Ezreal Draven. Ezreal Draven has removal for your early game units to limit how many lurks you can get at the beginning of the game.
Ezreal Draven also has Arachnoid Sentry and Thorn of the Rose to stun your Rek’Sai when you try and make a big push. The way you win this matchup is to rely less on Rek’Sai and try and gain board control through Death from Below. Death from Below can let you clear the enemies Draven/Ezreal/Blockers and make big pushes.
Your opponent will only have enough removal to deal with some of your units but not all of them. After you’ve done a good amount of chip damage, the game should come to round 8 where you can play Jaull Fish and finish the game from there.
- Feral Prescience
- Feral Prescience can allow you to more reliably hit Pyke, Rek’Sai, and pull off Bloodbait combos which can increase the power level of the deck.
- This card comes with the downside of being a non-Lurk card so it can mess up your ability to hit Lurk naturally.
- This card allows you to refuel against grindy decks with tons of removal so you don’t run out of steam.
- Rite of Negation
- During the mid-late game, your Lurkers have had tons of buffs and your boards start to be full of beefy units.
- You can use a well-timed Rite of Negation to hold down a strong board, go for game and stop enemy removal/power spells.
Thanks for reading! If you have any questions, feel free to ask NicMakesPlays during his streams (usually 6PM-1230AM EST).