[Guide] How do you build a deck in Legends of Runeterra?


Once you have worked your way through Legends of Runeterra’s tutorial, and you fully understand all mechanics (or at least adequately, or maybe you just clicked random buttons), you can test your skills against real life opponents. Legends of Runeterra provides you with a couple of premade decks, based on the basic card collection everyone has from the start. Of course though, the best part is to start creating your own brews. In this guide we explain how building a deck works in Legends of Runeterra.


There are six regions in Legends of Runeterra: Demacia, Freljord, Noxus, Ionia, Shadow Isles, and Piltover & Zaun. Each of these regions is home to four champions, all of whom also appear in League of Legends and have a unique skillset in Legends of Runeterra too. While the regions do have their own broad terms, building a deck in Legends of Runeterra is mostly focused on those champions. They are the powerhouses in a deck and the cards that you’ll have to play around. The two other types of cards are units (regular minions on the board) and spell cards.


▲ The deck builder in Legends of Runeterra


A deck in Legends of Runeterra must consist of exactly 40 cards, 6 of which have to be champion cards. You can have up to three copies of any given card in your deck—this is generally encouraged for most cards and especially for champion cards, since you want to draw them reliably. 


When you’re browsing through your collection and aren’t sure what a certain card does, simply right-click it. The card is zoomed in on, and you can hover over any keywords you don’t understand to read the tooltips. Right-clicking a card also lets you see any cards associated with it, like the cards that are generated by the card.


If you’re in love with a specific region, you can choose to create a deck with 40 cards of only that region. However, Legends of Runeterra encourages mixing regions. When building a deck you can combine any two regions’ cards and champions. Note that having a champion of a region is a requirement to play that region’s cards: if you have 6 Freljord champions, you can't fill the rest of your deck with cards from other regions.


▲ The deck builder allows you to filter for cards per region...


▲ and offers more precise filtering as well.


Sometimes when you’re building a deck, you think of too many options to include. Legends of Runeterra does allow you to include as many cards as you want in the first draft of your deck. You can save a deck with 50 cards, but you cannot play with it. You’ll have to cut back to 40 cards if you want to put your creation to the test.


In case you stumble upon what is undoubtedly the most powerful Legends of Runeterra deck the world has ever seen, or if you just want your friends’ help with fine-tuning your deck, you can use the “share” function. Each deck has its own, unique string of code you can copy and paste. This automatically imports the entire list to your client.


Naturally, you can’t play an imported list if you don’t have all the cards. Cards you’re missing copies of are highlighted red in the deck builder. If you right click a ‘red’ card you can see how many copies of the card you do have, and how many cards you may need to craft. 


There are two ways to craft missing cards: Wildcards and Shards. Wildcards are tokens you can exchange for any card of the corresponding rarity. There are Common, Rare, Epic and Champion Wildcards, which can be acquired by regular rewards or by paying money. Shards aren’t tied to a card rarity, but the higher the rarity, the higher the amount of Shards you have to pay. A Common card costs 150 Shards, a Rare 400, an Epic 1500 and a Champion card costs 4000 Shards.


▲ Share your deck (left of Heimerdinger), or import a deck (above Tryndamere)


▲ Imported decks you're missing cards of, have the missing cards highlighted in red.


The mechanics of deck building aren’t difficult in Legends of Runeterra. But crafting strong decks? That’s another beast. It’s trial and error over and over, slowly adjusting and swapping out the bad cards for potential improvements. Have fun!


Images via Riot Games

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