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5 Decks That Anyone Can Get To A9 Without Legendary Cards

Really thank /r/Riddle0219. Thank you for collecting these clash royale best decks and thanks even more for these write-ups. Super informative.

Hi there. Unlike other posters I don’t have the privilege of saying I’m one of the best players in the world or a hardcore CR player with lots of achievements. I’m merely an average A9 player with a humble personal best of 3389 trophies using tournament level cards, which isn’t too bad but I will try to reach 3500 with these card levels because my primary goal right now is to upgrade my commons to level 9 and rares to level 7 so I can use a variety of decks in tournaments.

After getting into legendary arena I bought some legendaries and I also tested a variety of decks with tournament level cards (some with level 6 rares) to see how each of them worked out, some with legendaries and some without. I also upgraded lots of cards to 9-7 to test them out and to use in tournaments so despite being a level 10 I don’t have a single level 10 common or level 8 rare – My commons are mostly 9 and half my rares are 7. I confess I have four legendary cards, one of them being level 2 – Princess (2), Ice wizard (1), miner (1), Lavahound (1). Ice Wizard and Lavahound were bought from the shop, the other 3 cards (two princess cards and one miner card) were given to me by two crown chests and one magical A8 (now A9) chest.

Inspired by all the hate towards legendary cards, I decided to compile a list of decks that can get players to legendary arena without legendary cards. Some of these decks have been tested by me, others are popular decks used by lots of players that you can find here on reddit and youtube or other websites. I copied some decks from strong opponents, clanmates or just popular players. One of those decks is even the one I used to push to legendary without legendary cards (despite the fact I got a princess card after about 2 matches inside legendary arena from a crown chest)

Keep in mind some of these decks may have a higher skill cap and card levels will be important to push higher – Simply upgrading all your commons can push you 200-300 trophies above your normal range without altering your skill

Before I start, I’ll assume the average card level required for any of these decks to work is 9-6-3. Of course, some commons may work when level 8 and some epics will work even at level 2, but I think the standard 9-6-3 is a fair one for a fairly competent player to reach legendary arena with enough skill and hardwork, and even to push as high as 3100-3150.

I will be mentioning winning conditions as individual cards (i.e. Hogrider, royal giant, etc.) and then show decks with those cards and a brief description on how to play each one of them, as well as some variations and replacements you can do depending on what you want to achieve with the deck

#1. Royal Giant Decks

1.1. Standard Royal Giant deck

Royale Giant, Elixir collector, Barbarians, Minions, Fireball, Zap, Spear goblins/Goblins, Cannon

How to play Royal Giant Decks – Use your elixir collector to gain an advantage and push with royal giant continuously and troops like minions and goblins behind him. Do this until you whittle the first tower down and then place your RG in the middle to go for the second tower, which is much easier. Defend with barbs, cannon, minions and fireball. Use fireball and zap on the counters your opponent will use against your RG.

Variations – Some people might replace elixir collector by another troop like fire spirits, another cheap troop, something like a Musketeer or Valk, etc. It is worth considering if you think it can work without Pump. It is also possible to replace Cannon and play without defensive structures and use another troop instead of cannon like a wizard or witch tough if you are playing without defensive structures I recommend using the elixir pump.

1.2. Chief Pat’s deck:

Royal Giant, Elixir Collector, Barbarians, Spear goblins, Cannon, Goblin Hut, Fireball, Arrows

How to play – Gain an advantage with your elixir collector, place one or more goblin huts and push with royal giant and all the spear goblins from the hut behind him. It is a super easy deck to play because the skill required is an extremely passive one and it is easy to push a draw if you believe you can’t win

Variations – Some people might prefer zap over arrows and tesla over cannon for better air defense, or even minions instead of spear goblins

1.3. Royal Giant Hog deck

Royal giant, Hogrider, Cannon, Barbarians/Mini pekka, Minions, Goblins/Spear, Goblins/Wizard/Witch, Zap, Fireball

How to play – Like the previously mentioned standard RG deck but this time you have two troops that only target buildings so use that to your advantage and push with the hog and RG separately or simultaneously depending on what feels appropriate. You can do small pushes like hog + stab + zap to quickly whittle down the tower or place RG in the back and build an even larger push.

Variations – You might want to add a pump over cannon but try to protect your towers with barbs/mini-pekka/minions. You can also replace minions for a splash attacker like wizard for a higher elixir cost. Musketeer should also work well.

You can find more Royal Giant Decks here, more standard RG decks here.

#2. Hog Rider Deck

2.1. Hog Trifecta deck

Hogrider, Valkyrie, Musketeer, Cannon, Elixir Collector, Skeletons, Zap/Arrows, Poison / Freeze / Fireball.

How to play – By far the most popular version uses poison which is logical since it has a lower skill cap and it is reasonably easy to play once you figure out the basics. Use pump to gain an advantage and push with the trio Hog + Valk + Musk and use poison to take down buildings and kill/slowdown defensive troops. Use cannon to defend, skeletons to cycle, distract, defend and push with the hog and use zap to defend and allow your hog to get more shots or take down cheap troops like goblins your opponent may place to kill your hog. If you are using the freeze version time your freeze well when your hog is less than half health and only use it when you think you will handle the counterpush.

Variations – With recent nerfs to Cannon and Skeletons some people prefer goblins/spear goblins/fire spirits/ice spirits instead and even a tesla/inferno instead of cannon. I DON’T recommend not using pump as it really helps this deck’s expensive 12 elixir push.

You should read Hog Trifecta Deck Guide to know how to play this meta deck.

2.2. Hog Cycle deck

Hogrider, Goblins, Zap, Cannon, Minions/Horde, Spear goblins/Skeletons, Mini-Pekka, Fireball

How to play – Most hog cycle decks cost 3.1 or less average elixir so the goal is to constantly push with the hog to whittle down the tower and prevent your opponent from building large pushes. Another technique that is crucial for this deck to work is to use your cheap troops to cycle back to the hog as fast as possible so that you can use him before your opponent cycles back to his hog counter (cannon, barbarians, mini-pekka). Use cannon, fireball, mini pekka and your cheap troops to defend, form a counterpush if possible but don’t allow your opponent to build large pushes – Push the other lane

Variations – I feel like minions/minion horde are basically a choice between faster cycle and higher DPS on defense so it’s up to you. Some people might prefer ice spirits or fire spirits to either spear goblins or skeletons which is something to consider.

More Hog Cycle Decks here, also if you want a Cycle Deck (No Hog).

2.3. Hog Baby Dragon Deck (3400+)

Hogrider, Baby Dragon, Goblins, Spear Goblins, Barbarians, Minion Horde, Zap Lightning

There are two ways to play. Reactively and counter attack (when behind) or aggressively (my preferred option). Just keep sending in combo after combo and support your counter pushes. Combo attacks: Baby dragon + Goblins, Hog rider + Spear Goblins, Baby dragon + Hog + Zap. If you cant get to their towers with combo attacks, you can use Split Offense Technique which is more advanced and riskier. In that case, your combos could be Minion horde + Hog baby dragon, Barbarians + Hog / goblins / spear goblins.

This deck’s credit goes to /u/victoriee

#3. Giant Decks

3.1. Giant-Balloon decks

Giant, Balloon, Barbarians, Elixir Collector, Skeletons, Arrows, Minions, Fireball
Giant, Balloon, Musketeer, Cannon, Barbarians, Skeletons, Fireball, Arrows (variation of M4SON’s deck without the ice wizard).

How to play – This is essentially the deck I pushed to legendary with (the first one). It’s a popular Giant-Balloon deck with fireball instead of princess. The only problem is that it is prone to mirror air decks but you should be able to win a 3 crown race if it comes down to it. Despite the fact I hit legendary with a wizard instead of fireball I still recommend fireball as it gave me more consistent wins. Use pump to gain an advantage, figure out your opponent’s air counters and push when your opponent is low and/or doesn’t have air counters available. If they have inferno tower push a draw. With M4SON’s deck you don’t have pump so just gain an advantage and push with your giant-balloon combo when you fill the requirements I already mentioned. Use cannon to defend against Hogs and RG’s. In any Giant-balloon deck prefire arrows to take out minions and minion horde and other pesky low HP troops your opponent uses against your balloon (if you hit low HP troops targeting the giant that’s a bonus)

Variations – You might want to use wizard instead of fireball (in my deck not M4SON’s) and he could actually work well since he got buffed. It’s also possible to use gobs instead of skeletons since I used the latter before they got nerfed and might not work as well now. You can also replace minions with minion horde for a more expensive deck but better on defense with more DPS

You should read more about Giant Balloon Guide to know how this meta deck work.

3.2. Jason’s Giant-Hogrider deck:

Giant, Hog Rider, Elixir Collector, Barbarians, Minion Horde, Spear Goblins, Arrows, Archers

How to play – Use the elixir collector to gain an advantage, defend with your high DPS troops like minion horde and barbarians and form a strong counterpush by placing a giant in front of your troops at the bridge. Use the hog over the river to take down buildings and use spear goblins and archers to support your giant. If your opponent isn’t very aggressive start your own push with giant in the back. After you take down a tower use giant in the middle of the enemy’s crown and king towers to soak damage and troops at the bridge like hogrider, spear goblins and archers.

Variations – Some people might want to use minions instead of minion horde for lower DPS but lower elixir cost and a fireball or zap instead of arrows tough I don’t recommend zap as your only spell if you don’t have princess

Want to know more about Giant Hog Deck? Check here.

3.3. Standard Giant Push deck:

Giant, Poison, Zap, Mini-Pekka, Goblins, Musketeer, Cannon, Minions

How to play – Simply form a push with the giant and troops behind him and use poison spell on defensive troops to take down the tower. Use cannon to defend against hogs and RG’s. Mini-Pekka should be used on defense and as a counter-push with the giant.

Variations – You can replace cannon with pump for a higher elixir advantage but worse defense. Poison can be replaced by fireball if you don’t want to use poison or if yours is too low level. You can also add troops like the valkyrie, fire spirits or archers and replace some of the troops in this deck, there’s some versatility in any standard giant push deck so feel free to replace troops and spells as you see fit as long as you keep the giant and a fairly consistent deck on both offense and defense. You could add a witch or wizard for splash damage or even a goblin barrel to make a pretty good combo if the giant is tanking the tower and your opponent doesn’t have an immediate answer to it.

Giant Poison Deck Video Guide Here.

3.4. Giant + 3 Musketeers deck:

Giant, Elixir Collector, 3 Musketeers, Barbarians, Knight, Arrows, Goblins, Minions

How to play – This deck relies on gaining an advantage with pump and doing a split push with a giant plus two musketeers on one lane and a knight plus one lone musketeer on the other lane and something else behind. It is a high risk high reward deck

Variations – You could replace the knight with something else and do a more low risk Giant & 3 Musketeers deck but you may be more weak to fireball.

You can read more Giant 3 Musk Guide Here.

#4. Golem Decks

Golem Poison deck:

Golem, Elixir Collector, Cannon, Skeletons/Goblins, Musketeer, Zap, Poison, Mini-Pekka

How to play – Gain an advantage by setting up at least one pump and send your golem after you know your opponent’s counters, preferably in 2x elixir only (according to experienced golem players). Use the poison spell and support your golem with mini pekka, musketeer and zap if needed and use cannon to defend along with mini-pekka while you build your pumps

Variations – You might want to replace musketeer with minions or even another ranged attacker like archers, wizard or baby dragon. You can also replace cannon with another troop and lack on defense but be stronger on offense.

No more Hog cancer! Claim your trophies with this amazing Golem decks here.

#5. PEKKA Deck

PEKKA & 3 Musketeers deck

PEKKA, 3 Musketeers, fireball, Zap, Elixir Collector, Barbarians, Goblins, Spear Goblins

How to play – Build an advantage with your pump and push with PEKKA and 3 Musketeers. Always drop PEKKA in the back unless you are in a hurry to take down a tower and the play is strategically justified. If your opponent has fireball you can do a split push by making two of your musketeers go with the PEKKA and push with a lone musketeer and cheap troops on the other lane

Variations – You might want to replace either goblins or spear goblins with a valk or mini pekka to increase your defensive capabilities and do better split pushes

Special note – While PEKKA + Double Prince combo is a strong deck that could certainly get you to legendary arena I will not be covering it since it requires higher level epics to work properly and win consistently. I am using level 9 commons as the norm to reach legendary arena assuming most people have at least 30-50% of their decks composed by commons. A PEKKA Double Prince deck without at least a level 4 PEKKA and one legendary will not work just as well and I prefer to not cover it since it’s not a standard deck I would recommend to reach legendary arena.

And this is it. Again, I’m no expert so excuse me for any mistakes. I haven’t played all those decks extensively and I’m probably better playing some (like Giant-Balloon and Hog Trifecta) than others (Like PEKKA & 3 Musketeers) but I hope this small guide can help people stuck below 3000 cups build a better deck and thrive for a better trophy count.

Never forget that skill and card levels matter a lot. If you are copying one of these decks but don’t know how to play it and your card levels are too low because you have never used some of the cards in the deck then it’s normal that you will be losing many times until you can upgrade your deck and practice enough to become an efficient player with it. Don’t expect to pick up Hogrider and just become good with it without at least doing half a hundred matches with a deck to become familiar with it and the strategy involved in it

BTW, English isn’t my native language so excuse me for any grammar or misspelling mistakes.

If you have any questions about any of the decks or about what cards to use in your deck feel free to ask, I’m not an expert but I will try to answer as well as I can.

I am NOT F2P as I have spent small amounts, mostly to get legendary cards but I believe many of these decks are perfectly doable for F2P and C2P (cheap to play) players. These decks are to get to 3000 trophies, possibly 3100 and above if you upgrade your cards even more, I’m not writing this to reach 3500-400 trophies because I am yet to breach that wall myself.

For anyone wondering if I’m telling the truth about being in legendary arena and not just some random noob in A6 writing this guide, here’s some proof (this is my current trophy count and I will be keeping it until season ends):

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