Before the Game

Well, tonight I’ll be participating in my second ever Thrones Joust tournament. I thought it might be useful, especially coming up to Regionals, to post some pre-game thoughts and follow up with a report afterwards. Note what worked, what didn’t. Tonight we’re expecting anywhere between 10-16 players. I expect after last week we will continue […]

Profile photo of Justin Shearer By Justin Shearer On April 12, 2012 Posted In Game of Thrones LCG

Well, tonight I’ll be participating in my second ever Thrones Joust tournament. I thought it might be useful, especially coming up to Regionals, to post some pre-game thoughts and follow up with a report afterwards. Note what worked, what didn’t.

Tonight we’re expecting anywhere between 10-16 players. I expect after last week we will continue to see a good number of Stark decks, and I suspect because of how successful military swarms were, those decks that weren’t running Valar will be. Might see some more Lannister too – I was surprised last time by the lack of PBTT-based decks.

For my part, I’ll be playing a different deck this week. My Starks are no joke, but they need a rest. I need some practice with some other decks to build some experience for regionals. Looking at what I have together, I really have two choices: Targaryen Burn (Maester’s Path) or Martell Summer. My choke isn’t sleeved at the moment and my Lannister deck… I have a strange relationship with that deck. I’m reasonably happy with it when I play it, but I just can’t get rid of that nagging feeling that it just isn’t tweaked enough. I think the trouble there is that I’m playing PBTT but it doesn’t do much for me and the drawback has ruined me in a few games – I probably just need to switch over to Maester’s Path.

As to my two candidates for tonight… well, I’ve played a *lot* of burn. I’m comfortable with the deck and the build is finely tuned – I’m still not sold on my ratio of Maesters to chains, but it has never been an issue in-game and I’m pretty confident that I could do well with my Targs.

My other choice is my Martell deck. I played a bit of Martell when we first picked up AGOT, but I haven’t played them lately. This build is a “looks good on paper” deck – but I’ve never played it against a human opponent. I know that should disqualify the deck, but every time I fishbowl hands I just think… “wow, this is a brutal start”. It is heavy on control and I have some concerns about its ability to close out games, but I’d love to try it.

Given the decks I expect to face, both decks should perform well. If one of my regular opponents turns up he’ll play either Lannisters or Martell “Hyperviper”, I’d guess. I’m pretty confident that my Targs can handle either, but I doubt my Martell can take on the Viper deck. That said, one deck out of 10-16 – I might not even bump into it.

So, should I go with a proven concept? Or should I go for the shiny? I think I know the answer, but I’m tempted to play Martell anyway! 😛

  1. Well, are you playing to win or not? :)

    I’m glad to hear you say that you’ve got some reservations with your PBTT deck. I voiced a similar misgiving about my own recently. I can’t put my finger on the issue, and it does rather well, but every time I play it I feel like I’m overlooking something or that it’s always on the verge of just being massively mediocre.

    I’ve never had my agenda hurt me too much, but I’d like to hear more about your issues if you’re willing to voice them.

  2. Then again, if you play the martel deck you might see that maybe it doesn’t perform up to par with how you thought it would. Then you go trying to fix it when you should perfect a deck that you already know pretty well. I say play Targ burn.

  3. With regard to Power Behind the Throne… well, it is really hard to nail down. I’m concerned that I only really get the full benefit when I have Cersei in play. When she’s not around, the extra INT is nice, but the drawback is reasonably painful and I can’t always get two INTs across the line. In an odd way, it makes it harder for me to INT challenge because of the costs of losing. I really don’t want my cards to give my opponent power or cards.

    Perhaps my build is just wrong – but I tend to think that the Maester’s just fits well with the control nature of my build. I add item and season control to my repertoire and also get some more card draw. Maybe the issue is that I want to play a control Lannister deck but I have a rush agenda… if I played it more like Bara Rush with some incidental control elements I might do better.

    As an aside, with Lannis I tend to feel like I get poor challenge economy out of my dudes. I have a lot of weenies, so I expend a lot of cards in-hand developing a board – since my dudes are quite small, I need a few of them to get challenges across the line without help… I dunno, just not happy with them. That said, it works pretty well most of the time… =/

  4. I’ll throw in my hat and say play Targ Burn… I’m biased of course, but go with what you know. You should definitely pull Martell out for play testing, though.

    I’ve got decks built for three other houses I want to try, but right now I’m focused on streamlining my Targ builds for Tourney season. I will plan to pull those other decks out once I’m through regionals though!