The Restricted List Tournament List Preview
The Godtear Restricted SFG 4 TTS tournament is underway! As of this writing, there are no results, but the 12 participants have posted their lists. The format for this tournament is fascinating, in my opinion. In order to create a variant of the standard SFG 4 format that avoids the repetitiveness of "meta" champions without outright banning anything, this tournament adds a small but impactful wrinkle. Five champions are on a "restricted" list, which means that players may have only one of those five in their standard list of 4. The restricted champions are Raith'Marid, Lilly, Skullbreaker, Kailinn, and Jaak.
Judging by the lists, this is having the desired effect. Of the 12 players registered, three chose Raith.Lily, Skullbreaker, Kailinn, and Jaak each got selected twice, and one player chose no one from the restricted list at all. This means players can bring these popular chances and will face them but probably not in mirrors and definitely not all at once.
Fully half of the field is in the top 10 on Longshanks at the time of this writing. Let's take a look at their lists.
This list makes me feel happy. Double slayer is just so much fun because it puts loads of pressure on opponents and puts you in the driver's seat. I know the hipsters just love their guardians and control effects, but Dave is out here looking to do some olds chool jawbreaking. I feel it. This is also a tough list to control because both slayers have strong dodge stats. Luella is here as a high-dodge specialist, and Raith is simply a model no one will ever mind having in their list.
Choosing Skullbreaker off the restricted list feels a whole lot better when he's paired with Fenra. Skully needs out of activation movement, and if the tooth bearers falter, he's got a little help from his doom-portendidng doggo friend. Nia and Mourneblade are both solid, underplayed characters who work very well together. It's really Nice to see MB out here, as there are only two instances of Maxen in the pool. This is certainly a control-oriented list, but it eschews moving banners and enemies in favor of creating hexes and denying enemy movement.
5. Charlie the Olde Crowe
Charlie is running without a shaper. This is not a drill. The double guardian look strikes me as an odd choice. I suppose that this will be advantageous on certain scenarios, but I just wonder how this list will hang in a fight without Kailinn on the board. Halftusk and Lorsann are very accurate, but they don't hit very hard. Maybe this is a counter-meta idea which is in response to the prevalence of Fenra and Skullbreaker. Charlie did wait awhile before posting his list. He's certainly an insightful student of the game who knows how to get wins, so I'll be watching to see how this list perofrms.
Another very different list! Rhodri is the most durable character in any list so far, and he gives this team a real anchor for area-control scenarios. This is also the first list that’ has included Lilly as its restricted champion. I’m a sucker for Lilly, so no arguments here. It’s really heartening to see Keera in a list. I positively love Keera, but she had fallen out of my personal rotation because of the threat from Kailinn. This format kind of brings her back, and I am more than here for it. Jeen is always controversial, but she makes sense here because of the movement support she brings to champions like Rhodri and Keera.
7. Mike Marchal
It’s the same as the list above, but with Helena. This makes perfect sense, as Mike is the biggest Helena booster around. Helena is a really interesting champion in a tournament where Construction is in the pool, and also one who fits very well with this list. Helena had a lot of doubters before Mike showed them up in the process of becoming UK Champion (even though he lives in Ireland), so we'll see if the Helenaissance (sorry) can keep rolling along.
Someone finally took Kailinn. Ironically, it’s Mbauers, one of Kailinn’s biggest haters. I respect this as I play a lot of Kailinn and am also one of her haters, to be clear.It's nice to see Shayle out here, as he is a really fun and powerful champion wo has suffered from the Kailinn meta. This format decreases her prevalence enough that you can put someone in your 4 even if they fall into her victim category. This rainbow list offers a nice mix of control and damage outpus, but it does rely heavily on high dodge to survive.
This format seems to be having its desired effects. The power picks are not exiled from the game (I wouldn't want them to be), but we are seeing a great deal of list variety. It's exciting.