The Long Voyage. Wow. It’s getting a lot of hate, and to what end? I have to admit, even I thought it was a terrible card when I first saw it. But give me a chance to explain how amazing this agenda truly is…
Let me break it down for you: you get guaranteed draw every turn, no matter what. Oh, well there are a couple other agendas that do the same, you say? And their conditions aren’t hard to meet? OK, true enough for Kings of Summer, but you remember that pesky 4.0 FAQ? Personally, I don’t want my +1 draw to rely on both an in-game combo (plot + attachment) as well as my restricted slot.
Which brings us to Knights of the Realm. Anyone who has played a Knights build knows that this condition is not the easiest to maintain, what with trait manipulation and all kinds of other control effects. House Baratheon can pull it off in a rush build, but other Houses simply have to worry about the number of Knights, etc. Plus losing that extra card on a Valar turn or, God forbid, only drawing 1 card per turn due to a lack of characters, can quickly make your games go sour.
In comes The Long Voyage, which allows you to get that draw, no matter what happens. No characters? No problem. Wrong season? No problem… The advantage, however, is only obtained if you change your approach to deck-building.
How to build one of these monster decks is this: you still run the same draw effects, up your most powerful x2 cards to x3, then add every “Limit 1″ reducer location in the game. Now you’re only, what, a few events away from 85 cards?
Now I will throw some numbers at you: the probability of drawing a card at x2 in a 60 card deck first turn is about 10%. The probability for drawing a card at x3 in an 85 card deck? About 10%. Since there is no change here, I can’t find the downside to this agenda.
The Houses benefiting the most from TLV: Targaryen (burn) and Stark (all). The least: Baratheon and Martell. Greyjoy and Lannister will still benefit with the right build, probably mill and kneel, respectively. Look for my Lanni TLV deck coming next to this blog. Robert at TC has challenged me to prove this agenda is worthwhile, so once I have tested a few more games, I will post my experiences on here.