I love me some Lexi. With some of the most varied gameplay and deckbuilding available to her in the game, she’s really a jack of all trades and can attack each meta in a variety of ways. This makes it so investing time and money into her can be rewarding as she’s always got a chance in every meta. However, it’s not as simple as throwing some cards together and playing Ranger. Lexi is an extremely touchy hero as to what her deck list contains and whose piloting it. For those looking to build their first competitive Lexi deck, let’s get into the various Lexi archetypes so you have a clear path forward.
“Coming in for 11 dominate with two Frostbite on hit.” Does that sound appealing to you? Well, it’s the core of what makes this Ice Lexi deck tick. Similar to Azalea, Ice Lexi likes to use one big arrow every turn to really push through damage. Equipped with dominate from Shiver or perhaps some other source, the core concept here is to push through damage alongside enough disruption to shut down basically all of your opponent’s turn. On the turns where you can’t present dominate, hopefully the disruption is more than enough to force blocks anyways so you don’t lose tempo. Shock Charmers is usually a favorite here to squeak through extra damage and Frostbites.
Key cards for this build are Weave Ice (Red), Polar Blast, Ice Quake and Seek and Destroy. Powerful pumps or dominate are what we’re looking for here, and connecting with them is the end goal. Your arrows also come loaded with solid on-hit effects, such as Blizzard Bolt or Chilling Icevein. Flake Out is a great damage arrow which gains free dominate when fused, making it a great pair with damage buffs.
The big weakness however is just consistency and actual offense. Run out or don’t draw your arrows? You might just be on the backfoot for the next three to four turns. The deck doesn’t block well and being on defense with disruption coming back your way is no fun. You’re trying to commit hard to playing your way and your way only, and any deviation from that probably means it’s a losing situation for you that needs to change ASAP. Additionally, decks that have loads of reacts and don’t mind having one or two cards in hand to swing an efficient weapon (Rhinar, Oldhim, Bravo) can simply out value you over the course of the game damage wise.
I’m obliged to keep this section short since this version is a bit out of favor in the current meta. OG Lightning Lexi uses lots of Lightning cards and tries to leverage the efficiency of cards like Frazzle, Buzz Bolt, Dazzling Crescendo, etc when fused. It heavily leverages non-attack actions that are more useful when going wide, such as Rain Razors and Three of a Kind to really put the pain down. However, this deck is substantially hurt offensively when presented any form of disruption, and needs a lot of resources to really do what it needs to win every game. In a sense, it’s the touchiest Lexi deck and was heavily hurt by the Ball Lightning ban early on in Tales of Aria. Rather, the newest iteration of aggro Lexi has been…
Voltaire is an amazing bow, and the beating heart of Lexi in my view. This deck decides to forgo the entire fusing package and just focuses on using the power potential of Voltaire and New Horizon to really blow games out of proportion.
Rain Razors, Art of War, Three of a Kind – these are all the big non-arrow cards in this builds which allow it go fairly tall while going uber wide through Voltaire. Bolt’n Shot plays an extra special role getting go-again when buffed, alongside an on-hit reload effect allowing you to go wider. Searing Shot is easy damage at a cheap rate, as are cards like Lightning Surge and Endless Arrow. Cards like Fatigue Shot and Hamstring Shot allow for bits and pieces of valuable disruption here and there to keep the opponent at bay.
Similarly to other Lexi decks though, blocking is a rough proposition and you really need all your cards every turn to be connecting for damage. Otherwise, value decks can straight beat you down through a the game. Maybe more than any version, this version struggles against active and consistent disruption. A sister Ice-Lexi deck could mean doom for you, as could a competent Oldhim or Bravo player.
Trying to get the best of both Ice and Lightning, this deck tries to both disrupt and deal damage. Although great in theory, hybrid has yet to make its splash on the big stage, and hence isn’t played much competitively.
However, you have access to some of the high ceiling cards here like Flashfreeze, Ice Storm and the power of variety to adjust to each matchup as you please. The problem with this deck is that as much as you gain Lexi’s strengths in Ice and Lightning, you also gain the weaknesses of both alongside additional variance as to whether the correct Fuse and fusable card is drawn.
I hope this gives you a good idea into Lexi’s predominant archetypes in the meta. As you can see, she has a huge card pool and variety of ways to play, some of which aren’t even listed here. Yuki Lee Bender, one of the predominant Lexi players in the FAB community, recently guided a deck list to good success in the Pro Tour that was a mix of an Ice deck and a no Fuse deck list. For those just getting into the Ranger gear, enjoy the ride and happy shooting! If you’re have more questions on any of the archetypes listed here, want to know what I’m playing in my Lexi list or anything else, feel free to reach out to me on Twitter @a_dedanwala.