yet another GJ/SoB (War of the Night's King winner)

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zireael 17

This is the deck I played in the War of the Night's King tournament in Prague this weekend (47 players). There is not much there to see I guess, just another SoB deck with perhaps a slightly different plot deck and Raider from Pyke as a limited.

I would like to thank Andre and Katka (and whoever else helped them) for putting up such a great tournament with such an amazing prize support, despite FFG turning their back to them. I would also like to thank all my opponents for all the games we played.

And here is all that I can remember from the games I played on the day. It was a lot of games so I may not remember all the details.

Round 1: Corvo (Stark - Fealty)

Northern Keep on setup plus Winter Reserves on turn one screamed of a slightly unusual plot deck. But my lack of summer plots made it quite an effective economy throughout the whole game. His turn one board was Winterfell, Bran Stark (Core) and Catelyn Stark (Core) (plus maybe something else) - decent in stopping my SoB, not so good in winning challenges. I can't remember the details but I believe Euron Crow's Eye (KotI) was always able to intimidate Cat while Raider plus Pinch paired with SoB presented two threats while Winterfell could always stop only one. Can't remember much else outside of drawing Victarion Greyjoy (MoD) later to get rid of the Winterfell on that same turn (I didn't even have to flip my winter plot) and glided to victory from there.

1-0

Round 2: David Deml-Müller (Targ - Qohor)

My opponent came with a very interesting deck of Dothraki screamers and a bunch of attachments and managed to place quite highly in the end with such an unusual deck. The game itself started with Khal Drogo and Ser Barristan Selmy (LoCR) looking at much more intimidating board. Can't remember what exactly it was but I remember thinking "he better have Qotho, otherwise this game will be over very quickly". He had Qotho and Missandei and was able to defend the challenges, that however cost him almost his whole hand and not much to swing back with. The decisive point in the game came when I was able to When I Woke... his non-kneeling Drogo stopping his whole turn, while also triggering SoB on the swing back and then taking his Meereen was just a final nail to the coffin.

2-0

Round 3: Liborhood (Martell - KotHH)

Matchup I wasnt really scared of coming into the game as in my head their lack of setup matches very poorly against PttT every turn, but it actually ended up as a very tight game. I don't think I was able to trigger SoB many times in the end, and I made a crucial mistake by being greedy and cancelling Areo Hotah (Core) who wasn't much of threat just to get hit by Varys (Core) next turn. But Libor lacked card draw whole game and I was able to win the game.

3-0

Round 4: Princ Kocek (Stark - Kings of Winter)

This was the first game that was just a straight beating and not much of a game. I had pinches, I was triggering SoB and there wasn't much my opponent could do but to sit back and sadly look as his cards are disappearing from the table. Sorry.

4-0

Round 5: Jannis Roepert (Martell - Alliance(stag/kraken))

Coming into the game, I had no idea what to expect from that deck. EoI turn one plus Chair and Table on the board gave me a good insight into what to expect. And I wasn't happy. Deck that doesn't really care about my Pinches or PttS and can have an occasional His Viper Eyes to stop me from burning his 100 locations. Paired with bunch of resets, my lack of Iron Mines and not the best card draw - I wasn't liking my chances. Luckily, I was wrong about the Pinches. They proved a crucial card to this game - and I drew all 3 quite early. Winning all the challenges unopposed, due to being able to pinch everything back to hand while not having to deal with bastard daughters and desert raiders made my day so much easier. And my climb to 15 power so much quicker. I believe we finished on plot 6. I think my opponenent was quite unlucky because despite 10 Dorne triggers he wasn't able to find enough HVE's and HJ's fast enough. Very scary game against a very unusual deck that I was hoping I will not have to face again. Little did I know we will get paired for top 8 again. And what a game that was!

5-0

Round 6: Štěpán K. (Stark - Brotherhood)

Seeing somebody take Stark with no loyal characters and go 5-0 with it left me wondering what the hell is going on. I was really eager to see what this deck is all about. Unfortunately, I didn't get to look for long. The game was over in few minutes. Mine At the Gates vs his The Long Winter lost me initiative and as I learned soon enough, that was it. Stealth from the agenda, Winter Is Coming for 3 claim military, 2 claim int and despite me having some saves, not enough guys to swing back. Next turn Famine and another Winter is Coming sealed the deal. The first game where Valar Morghulis would actually be useful, but seeing as Valar would be such a nuisance against all the control Martell decks plus how usefull all my other plots were, I definitely didn't regret my choice to not bring Valar. Besides, now I knew what my opponent's plan is, I was hoping we will meet again so I can get a revenge after such a humiliating defeat. Unfortunately, Štěpán lost his top 8 game, which I heard was very close, but nontheless, congratulations on building such a beautiful deck and doing so well with it.

5-1

Top 8: Jannis (again) (Martell/Alliance)

Oh boy, I wasn't looking forward to this one. This was a very grindy, very long game of me trying to steadily climb to more and more power while trying to keep enough resources in hand. This was also the hardest game of the tournament for me. After my fruitless turn one attempt to PttT, I just decided I will have to fight against Dorne on board, as there was no way I was getting it off the board. Pinches were nowhere to be found this game and after finishing turn one with next to no cards in hand I was even more scared than before the game. I don't remember many details of this game, I remember Asha Greyjoy (Km) being the real MVP, sticking her to the board early and keeping her there for long, I remember marshalling Victarion Greyjoy (MoD) instead of Balon Greyjoy (Core) expecting Duel next turn, so when I Forced March I will have a standing guy. I did just that next turn. I remember realizing how usefull the timing on Iron Gate actually is, being able to draw cards after I do all my challenges. I remember Iron Gates being the second MVP, drawing me 4 cards when paired with We Take Westeros!. In the end Jannis conceded with 5 minutes on the clock after he reset the board and saw that I had Balon plus 2 other guys to refill it. I am not sure I was winning the game that turn (I can't remember if I was at 11 or 12 power) but there was no way he can turn the game before the time runs out.

This was the type of game you really don't want to play if you have winning the tournament in mind, but is the best type of game and the reason I love this game so much. Thanks again to my opponent for both of the games, and congratulations on bringing such an unusual deck and doing really well with it.

Top 4: Herly (Tyrell/Dragon)

This game was decided on turn one. I had a ridiculous turn one where I had Balon Greyjoy (Core), Euron Crow's Eye (KotI) With Silence, some other guys, 3 Great Hall plus Iron Fleet Scout on board and another in hand. And I had 3 saves in hand and A Pinch of Powder in hand ready for next turns. I let my opponent go first so my Balon doesn't get milked or anything. My opponent had Renly Baratheon (FFH) + Queensguard, The Knight of Flowers (HoT) and something small. He kept two gold and when I tried to save Balon for military he canceled it (hard to blame him seeing as he discarded one of my saves for int), however I had the third save and then Balon was able to swing back with sea of Blood and PttS Renly, his HJ gone so Renly dies. He Valared me next turn, but with such a ridiculous economy I could afford to play Counting Coppers and refill the board and he never got on board after that. Another game that wasn't much of a game. Sorry.

Finals: Saman Nowrouzi (Stark - Fealty)

This game was streamed and I believe you can find the recorded game somewhere. From what I recall, I chose to flip Trading turn one, seeing I had just enough gold to Pinch, Euron and Balon. Facing Bran, Arya, Robb and Greatjon on the opposit side, I pinched his Robb turn one and he decided to Valar me turn 2, Bran stopped me from saving and I fliped At the gates for economy. I was a little choked on gold so it took me some time to get back on board. But when I finally stuck Victarion I started to climb back into quite comfortable position. There was a moment where Skagos plus Ramsey could have been very bad for me but he lacked one more character to do that. With the reset gone so early, the game then tipped slowly but surely to my side.

And that was it, my first victory in a tournament, shame I wasn't able to do that with something less boring than GJ/SoB. Maybe next time. Once again, thank you all for an amazing tournament.

3 comments

Toaster 27

Very interesting approach to GJ SoB, a few questions:

  • Why no resets?
  • Your thoughts about Alannys Greyjoy (CoS), she seems broken?
  • What would you cut to get closer to 60 cards?
  • Do you think the game is decided after two SoB triggers so that's why only 1x Isle of Ravens?

zireael 17

There are couple of reasons why I chose not to play a reset. First, I find it really hard to imagine I will get outconstructed on board. Gj has few of the best big characters in the entire game. Then Drowned Men are probably the most strenght you can get on board for 4 gold. And then Pinch, PttS, When I Woke.. and some other stuff like Golden Storm can quite easily swing the board state from equal to winning. And even if you somehow do, you still have characters like Victarion, Balon and Theon who are extremely good when fighting from behind. What I didn't even consider but realized during the tournament is that Valar M really hinders you in control match ups like Martell. The other reason to not include a reset is my choice of limited. By foregoing Iron Mines, it is really hard to imagine Valaring aggresively. You will just never have enough saves to survive your own Valar and be save from your opponent's in the following turns.

I did think about Alannys. It just doesn't really fit the game plan IMO. Paying 5 for something with no mil icon means you are most likely not even threatening to trigger SoB.

Hard to say, if I knew answer to that question I would probably play such a deck. The first thing I would be looking at are When I Woke.. and Golden Storm. Both very situational but with a huge impact. I wasn't too fuzzed about playing 63 though. There is a lot of redundancy in Gj cards.

Isle of Ravens is just a late game card and the probability that I will want it early pales in comparison to the probability of it just sitting on the board/in my hand doing nothing meaningful. After a PttS pulling you ahead on board, it seems much more likely that you would rather search for a save or card draw to secure your position there rather than just going for another and another PttS. That just seems like a winmore glass cannon strategy.

Toaster 27

Thanks for the answer, I think I understand your choices better.