This is a Tier List for Stage 2 of the KC Cup, a Best-of-1 Ladder format.
Don't get fooled by positions in the Tier List, we're actually in a 3 decks format. Rose Dragons, Wounded Hero HEROs and Favorite Duel Elemental HEROs are equally good choices, while Meklord and Galaxy receive the coveted "You Tried" award.
As for rogue options, pay attention to the usual suspects: Lunalight, Witchcrafter (don't do this plz), Nekroz, Gandora and so on. If there's anything new to add in the category of sacky rogue deck, it's probably Infernity. The deck just got slightly better at doing its setup, and uninterrupted it's undeniably the best deck in the game, however, consistency is an issue, without even mentioning the fact that it just folds if you breathe too hard on it.
Nothing has changed when it comes to Rose Dragon and it's position in the meta. It remains a powerful and consistent strategy and there does not seem to be a reliable counter that exists. Duelists continue to think that the “Synchro Destroying”-Meklords are the answer but time has shown that this is simply not true and Rose Dragon can handle the strategy without concern. Instead, this KC Cup should see an increase in strategies that can survive a Loading... board wipe through cards such as Loading... that prevent destruction, or hand traps that allow the player to preserve cards without fear of losing on the next turn. When a deck has as long of a reign as Rose Dragon, it will have a target on its back in a tournament like this. If players can overcome the inevitable storm of negation and Loading... s, Rose Dragon is the definite deck to beat and is expected to walk away from the KC Cup with the most placements in the Top 100.
Rose Dragons is regarded as the best mix of consistency and power, packing some good grind game while at it. As for lists you can expect...there is no standard one right now. It's mostly up to their pilot, as pretty much every list tries to do the same, and techs depend on what deck do you want to try to beat harder, however, if there's a KC where tech slots (unless you go into really heavy counters like Loading... ) matter less, it's this one. Well, for Rose Dragon at least. You see, the mirrors quality has severely went down after the release of Loading... and Loading... giving basically autowin tools to both going First and Second, (If you set up Yazi and live backrow, you're probably winning; if you go second, and your opponent didn't set up backrow or you have means to play through it, Trish them and they probably lose). This essentially means that most players will try to focus on generic techs that attempt to hit every deck, rather than going for very specific ones, at least at the start of the weekend. As for things that can change and matter: Loading... vs Loading... is a big one, but the main question mark with Rose Dragon is how you want to use your Extra Deck spots, since you have many options at your disposal, but you can't just fit all of them.
Favorite Duel Elemental HEROs is probably the closest attempt to a community-constructed “counter” to Rose Dragon we will see for this KC Cup. With Loading... protecting its biggest threats and a large array of negating or banishing Traps to further defend against Loading... or Loading... , in theory this tempo-focused deck should have the upper edge against the current best deck in the game. In reality, this is more difficult than it looks. With a 30=card deck prone to inherent inconsistencies in what and how many techs they do end up seeing, Rose Dragon can still overwhelm them early on and secure a win as it succeeds in the same tempo game that was forced onto them through cards such as Loading... . If the Elemental HERO duelists build well and have luck on their side, I expect this deck to have multiple placements in the Top 100.
Favorite Duel Elemental HEROs is instead the deck that will rely more on deck building: you have different approaches to the backrow that you want to run, and changing it mid-way through the run can have a bigger impact than it would in Rose Dragon (Because you rely A LOT more on it, while Rose can still do its thing just fine regardless of their techs). Your choices here are going to matter, but unfortunately you can't choose to always open Loading... .