How to Play Sivir LeBlanc
We’ve been spoiled with content these past few weeks. First, we experienced the biggest balance patch in months alongside the release of Rise of the Underworlds.
Then before we even had time for the meta to settle, we launched right into the Sentinels of Light event!
Distracted by the hype of the new cards, we have yet to explore some of the big metagame players.
It’s Trevor “Shugo” Yung here and today we’re talking about a deck that’s earned quite the reputation: Sivir LeBlanc!
Deck Code: CEBAEBADAQJQMBAHCQTDMN3HRIAQGAYEA4GS2XICAEBQWNYDAQBQECAPAA
Sivir LeBlanc has always been a respectable tier 2-3 deck. However, with a newly buffed Sivir and Incisive Tactician, it’s become a real powerhouse. Now that Sivir’s level-up requirement is easier, she can more reliably flip over and become the win condition the deck always needed.
This archetype is built around having our units strike with 5+ power. If we can achieve this target four times, we unlock a nice discount on our Reputation cards.
More importantly, we strive closer towards leveling Sivir. We make use of the classic Shurima package to grant Vulnerable to our enemies. This allows Sivir and LeBlanc to pick off units without harm or send in a Thrashing Snapper for a +3 power buff.
If you enjoy having an edge in combat or setting up an untouchable board state, Sivir LeBlanc is the deck for you!
We want to aim for a solid curve whenever possible. It’s important to have our one and two drops, then look for our champions. 1-2-3-4 is the dream, but there are a few situations where we want to prioritize some specific keeps.
- Thrashing Snapper
- Treasure Seeker
- House Spider
- Rock Hopper
- LeBlanc: Keep when attacking on odds and not against Mystic Shot.
- Sivir: Prioritize highly against control decks. A definite keep if you already have a one and two drop in hand.
- Preservarium: Keep against slower matchups.
- Merciless Hunter: Solid keep alongside one and two drops, or when the opponent has high priority targets to remove.
- Exhaust: Auto-keep unless against control matchups.
Example Hand 1:
Example Hand 2:
Our goal is to take control of the board and gain advantages through favorable combat exchanges. Rock Hopper and Merciless Hunter make it awkward for the opponent to play units on curve. Try to play Rock Hopper right before the moment when they’d play a champion or key threat on curve.
If you’re attacking on odds and have Merciless Hunter in hand, sometimes it’s best to take an early pass. Doing this forces your opponent to either play their unit into Merciless Hunter or forgo the opportunity.
Against more aggressive matchups they often can’t afford to not develop their board, so this gives you a great chance to punish them!
One key difference with this list is the inclusion of Exhaust. There is a lot of valuable utility that comes with this one mana card. Unlike your other Vulnerable granters, Exhaust can be played at Focus Speed, giving you a surprise edge that is extremely difficult to play around.
This allows you to get a surprise kill without declaring your target beforehand. At later stages of the game, it can be used to drag the lowest health enemy in front of your Overwhelm to push maximum damage or pull another target away from blocking the rest of your team.
Development punishers like Icevale Archer and Arachnoid Sentry can be devastating to deal with, so having an option to grant Vulnerable before an open attack can be critical. If you’re encountering a heavy control meta then it may be best to consider other options. Aside from that, it’s an awesome inclusion that I believe is being slept on.
As we progress to the later turns we’ve hopefully struck enough to enable our Reputation. Whispered Words and Incisive Tactician are extremely powerful when discounted. The former ensures you never run out of steam while the latter helps close the door completely.
Once Sivir is leveled you can make use of The Absolver to grant Overwhelm to every attacking unit. Instead of Kato The Arm, we now have a Burst Speed option to give our opponent less room for counterplay.
Lastly, don’t forget we can use Whirling Death and Bloody Business alongside Overwhelm to push extra Nexus damage.
LeBlanc is an offensive machine that strikes hard but cowers to removal. She’s incredibly difficult to block, but always finds a way to eat a Mystic Shot. While we can’t always ensure LeBlanc’s safety, Jokes aside, it doesn’t take much to connect through enough damage to level her up. She often comes down in the mid-game alongside other units and can see 15 damage after just one combat phase.
While you shouldn’t focus everything on her, LeBlanc will definitely close out some games. Always remember her champion spell can deal two points of burn to the enemy Nexus. You may sometimes be best casting Sigil of Malice before LeBlanc dies and reverts to her champion form.
Sivir has become a recent menace of the metagame. The combination of SpellShield and Quick Attack is extremely difficult to deal with. Many decks don’t have efficient ways to pop the shield. Those that do often need to preemptively remove it to have their removal go through.
Sivir should be used as a reliable means of removing Vulnerable units, granting Reputation triggers, and then closing the game post-level-up. It’s generally best to have Sivir attack from the far right to ensure each other unit maintains her buffs while attacking. As mentioned above, granting Overwhelm to your board with The Absolver should generally do the trick.
Our next best threat after Sivir, we have Ruin Runner. Devastatingly powerful ever since release and initially thought as superior to Sivir herself, there’s no mistaking Ruin Runner’s ability to end games.
Overwhelm plus SpellShield almost guarantees you’re getting at least some damage through. With an aggressive enough early game, sometimes all you need is Ruin Runner on round five to close it out. Not much else to say here, the card’s nuts.
While it may not seem like a big buff, having five power just makes so much more sense. We have another target for Bloody Business and more importantly, LeBlanc’s Mirror Image. Cloning an Incisive Tactician may seem like overkill, and often it is. But c’mon, it’s awesome when it happens!
Okay so this last card isn’t exactly a win condition. But at times it certainly can be. Treasure Seeker is an amazing value card that makes Waking Sands feel like a real card.
Not only does it enable another Reputation trigger and progress Sivir’s level up. There are board states where you can outright threaten lethal. If you happen to draw a couple of these early, pay attention to the board. If your opponent isn’t careful you can push 10+ damage out of nowhere only using spell mana!
The core shell of this deck is pretty well established so it can be hard to make room for other options. Exhaust is a personal preference, so if you find it doesn’t suit your metagame, feel free to drop it for something else.
Rite of Negation
There’s always going to be some metas where a Deny is extremely valuable. We’re in Shurima so we get Rite of Negation, and it gets the job done when it’s needed.
The common inclusion. It’s usually a worse, but still reasonable Merciless Hunter. It does cost four mana which competes with Sivir, and there are times when we need to reserve spell mana to protect our more valuable units. Personal preference, but Baccai Sandspinner doesn’t cut it my books.
Black Rose Spy
A unique card that’s either a vanilla 3|2 or a discounted threat in the mid to late game. Could reasonably fit, but is often cut for lack of consistency.
Perhaps a reasonable 1-of in more controlling metas. Sivir LeBlanc usually gets the job done but sometimes calls for a little more over-the-top.
Alright, that’s a rep! .. Err.. wrap! Despite the deck looking pretty clear cut on the surface, there’s a lot of tricks and maneuvering that go into it. There’s a lot of decisions that come from experience, so give it a try and you’ll learn a lot as you go!
Shugo’s Productivity Thought of the Day
While it’s important to know what to do, and how to do it…
It’s more important to actually start.