Well, it’s that time of the year again. The 2016 seasons are ending and 2017 is about to begin with a whole new tournament format. I won’t get too much into the tournament setup itself, or how awful the spread of events in North America is, or anything like that, since there isn’t much we can do about that. Instead, I hope to clear up a few things about the current English meta, such as what decks are good, why Nisekoi isn’t good, etc.
So yes, I’m going to present you with a tier list. I’ll follow this up with individual articles about each English set and why I think it’s in the tier I place it in. I won’t drag this article on too long since I’ll be explaining these in the future, so without further ado, my tier list:
- To Love Ru
- Kantai Collection
- Sword Art Online
- Attack On Titan
- Madoka Magica
- Love Live
- iDOLM@STER Cinderella Girls
- Project Diva
- Prisma Illya
- Fairy Tail
- Angel Beats!
- Log Horizon
- Kill la Kill
- Monogatari Series
- Milky Holmes
I’d like to point out a couple of things about this list before I go into detail about individual choices. First, these series are in no special order within the tiers, I just typed them in as I thought of them. Second, once you get around the B and C tiers, everything has kind of reached the point that it doesn’t matter a whole lot, hence why there’s no C+ Tier. The biggest difference is that the B Tier series have something that actually sets them apart from other sets that gives you a slight reason to play them over other sets.
I was unsure whether To Love Ru and Kantai Collection both deserved their own tiers, but I ended up going with it. I firmly believe To Love Ru is strictly the best deck in the game, hence its separation from the rest of the series, but I also believe it is truly a tier above the previous best deck in the game, which also has numerous qualities that had set it apart as, in my opinion, an S Tier set. Either that or I’m just really biased towards boats. Who knows.
Anyhow, a quick rundown of what the tiers mean: S+ and S are your best decks in the game, and the obvious choice if you want the absolute best performance out of your deck in a tournament. These decks have not just one, but multiple special tools that set them apart from other decks.
A+ is the rest of your decks that you should definitely be considering if you’re looking to top an event. While they don’t have quite as many special tools as the higher placed decks, they’re still very competitive and consistent series.
A is where things start to fall off a little bit. These series are still good, but they’re just lacking the oomph that the A+ decks have.
B+ only exists because I don’t actually feel comfortable grouping Project Diva with the B tier decks. B+ is basically A if you want less consistency for more payoff, I guess?
B decks are lacking modern tools that allow the higher tier decks to compete, such as powerful finishers, consistency, ways to prevent the opponent from performing their strategy, or some combination of things. However, they still have some unique reason to be played over C Tier decks.
C Tier is uh, pretty useless. These decks have significant flaws that prevent them from competing at a very high level, whatever those may be.
I’ll follow this up with more in-depth reasoning on each series individually in the coming weeks.