Legends of Runeterra


LoR: Elder Dragon Rotated - Pros and Cons, and What Now?

, Comment regular icon0 comments

In this article, I'll share my thoughts about the next Standard meta without Elder Dragon, which will rotate out in August. I'll also bring you all a few lists that will probably dominate the ranked queue, considering Dragon lists will no longer be meta.

Writer image

translated by Joey Sticks

Writer image

revised by Tabata Marques

Edit Article


Riot has just announced the Legends of Runeterra Patch 5.6. notes; shockingly, they decided Elder Dragon will rotate out of Standard in August.

In this article, we'll see what this means for this format, considering this champion was one of the most influential LoR champions of all time.

We'll make educated guesses as to which lists will dominate the meta instead of Dragons, and go through a few ideas so you can make the most out of this change when the next rotation comes along.


Let's see, then, what will happen in Standard without Elder Dragon!

Keep in mind that these are just theories, and some decks I'll show you in this article might not be viable in Standard after all - some of their champions and/or cards might rotate out of Standard alongside the Elder Dragon.

Main Pros to Rotating Elder Dragon

We all know that the Standard ranked queue is basically made up of Elder Dragon lists - they represent over 50% of the meta. One of the main signs that proves this is that the best decks to beat Elder Dragon lists also use it.

As a result, a meta without it will naturally welcome a wider variety of playable lists to the ranked queue. A wider variety of lists also means that the chances of your favorite list being viable are higher.

Another pro is that late game units will no longer get Dragon Boons. So, they'll finally enter the board with their original stats and no longer get Challenger or another keyword that instantly wins the game.

Unfortunately, Dragon Boons affect the game similarly to Evelynn's Husks: depending on which keyword you get, you'll get a huge advantage, or might just lose a lot of value. Obviously, Dragon Boons aren't as toxic as Husks, but they work relatively the same. For this reason, without Elder Dragon, we will also be spared from the RNG in its Dragon Boons.

And lastly, the Elder Dragon's Origin will also no longer be available in Standard. This means that the meta won't be just 50 decks with just 10 or 15 different cards and a different support region.

This game style is great competitively speaking, but it is extremely repetitive. One of the reasons behind this is that the LoR community "solves" metas too fast because we all can easily access all cards. Most players found out what were the best units to pair with the Elder Dragon's Origin incredibly fast, and, ever since, almost every deck in Standard plays these same cards.

Without the Elder Dragon, the meta will no longer be repetitive.

Main Cons to Rotating Elder Dragon

We don't have many cons, apart from the fact we can't actually predict what the meta will be. We've been playing with the Elder Dragon at the top of the meta for so long that it will be as if Legends of Runeterra went back in time, to when Heart of the Huntress came out.

Since then, the PvP community changed drastically, and the most dedicated competitive players who built new lists all the time no longer play. Most people who play PvP nowadays focus a lot more on having fun. This means that we might have many strategies to discover still.

That's why I decided to bring you some ideas: so you can prepare yourself for the next Standard meta.

Decks that Might Be Strong in Standard without the Elder Dragon

Vladimir Braum

Loading icon

The Vladimir Braum archetype has recently been reintroduced to Standard, and, as a result, will probably not be rotated out any time soon.

This list doesn't play well against most Elder Dragon decks either. So, despite strong, it isn't interesting in the current meta because of Dragon lists.


This is also one of the best decks competitively speaking because you can just ban Dragon lists in tournaments. One of the best players in the BrasileiLOR/Copa Lótus 3 team tournament (a grassroots tournament), Wasrusso, played this deck in almost every round and finished with a 13/3 score (13 victories and only 3 losses).

Lux: Illuminated & Vex - Boost

Loading icon

The Boost archetype was a failure competitively speaking because of the unimaginable strength of Dragon decks in the meta.

As both champions in this deck, besides most cards, are new, they'll hardly rotate out of the game any time soon as well.

Additionally, just this week, Horned Swarmcaller was nerfed. This card, on its own, completely destroyed all Lux: Illuminated archetypes, and now, aside from the fact it was nerfed, we know that the Elder Dragon will also rotate out. This means that this unit will show up less frequently, so the win rates of these Boost decks will go up.

Evelynn & Kai’Sa

Loading icon

Anyone who has been testing out this deck on the ranked queue knows: this deck beats practically everything in Standard, except for Elder Dragon lists.

This list's mana/unit curve is incredibly restrictive, but its cards are also incredibly powerful. It is also straightforward to pilot and its champions are extremely charismatic; Kai'Sa and Evelynn are known community favorites.

This deck has everything to become extremely popular in the next meta, and will certainly wreak havoc on the ranked queue. It will be an extremely dynamic meta if this list becomes popular because usually the best answers to beat it are fast, aggro lists.

The Poro King

Loading icon

The Poro archetype is incredibly iconic and quite strong, particularly nowadays. It only isn't stronger because of Dragons.

This was a very popular list in recent grassroot tournaments that forbid you from playing the Elder Dragon; it made it all the way to top cuts many times, and was in every best-performing lineup.

These types of tournaments (the ones that ban a specific card beforehand) are incredibly common nowadays, which is another sign the meta has become extremely boring and repetitive. In these tournaments, we can see how the meta would be if certain cards weren't around, and you can be sure that Poros would definitely be one of the strongest lists if the Elder Dragon weren't around anymore.


Loading icon

Unfortunately, Ephemerals have just returned to Standard, and will probably be around for a long time.

Hecarim lists are extremely independent and, nowadays, are one of the few archetypes that entirely ignores Dragons because it has great matchups against most of these decks.

The problem is that they also win against the rest of the meta. And they're also the most popular deck after Dragons, so in the first week of the new rotation we'll most likely see most players (particularly more "tryhard" ones) play this archetype.

Get ready because, if the new rotation doesn't bring us any answers to Ephemerals, we'll be seeing a lot more of them around, as they'll continue to be one of the best archetypes of all time.


Final Words

Image content of the Website

If you read this far, thank you. I hope you had fun, and enjoyed reading this article.

Don't forget to share!

See you next time!