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|King Mance - The Crow that was promised||27||16||8||1.0|
My first published decklist here. Comments are welcome. This deck was heavily inspired by another Mance Rayder deck published 4 months ago by @Dzerards, with a good number of changes and play. You can find that decklist here: http://thronesdb.com/decklist/view/6156/king-mance-the-crow-that-was-promised-1.0
The essential idea of this deck is choke and push renown challenges through with Mance. The cost curve is primed for First Snow, which is the essential trick of this deck. Your put pressure on your opponent early with military aggro, and force them to play out lower cost characters due to the choke. Then, around plot 3 (although I've 15-0'd one person with a perfect weakness on turn one first snow), you pop the first snow. Your ranging parties, Benjen, Mance, the Hordes, the Rattleshirts, etc all have really solid military strength. Next turn you pop famine, and usually this will give you complete control of the board until it's gg.
Other than renown and the unopposed bonuses you push through due to your control of the board, you want to get your Winter festivals off, and you want to set up the Throren + Bridge of Skulls combo.
I'll go through the changes I made below:
One of these was cut for a Thoren, and another for a Ghost. The intrigue icon is nice, and I'm seriously considering finding room for 1x Arry. I wouldn't run more than 1 copy to be honest.
I haven't had time to experiment with this yet. He's card number 61. Despite all the weeping and gnashing of teeth when he was spoiled, I don't really see him being a big deal. He's a 5 cost monocon which counters a card that doesn't seem to be nearly as ubiquitous as it was in 1.0. In those matchups, he's stellar, and the fact that he's a Wildling is probably what pushes him into "good stuff" category. This is mostly because he will be a prime milk target if you marshal him, but if you've got Mance out you can ambush him in. It's a good way to cement a lead if you're rolling and expecting a Valar.
I can't say enough good things about this card. In many matchups, your opponent will have out ridiculously sized military icons, whether it's Tywin, Gregor, etc (ok maybe it's mostly Lanni). Ghost's printed stealth is one of the only ways you'll get it, and he doesn't have a crippling downside like Will (fuck Will, #I'mWithJoe).
This is to make room for the second copy of Thoren.
I've long since forgot exactly what I cut this for, but I cannot stand Alliser, in the books, show, or the card game. He's designed for Wall decks and those decks don't even run him anymore.
Cut for a Wildling Bandit.
This is your secondary win condition. If Mance dies, gets milked, or is otherwise indisposed, you ride Thoren to victory. Locking in Thoren along with Bridge of Skulls will frustrate the hell out of your opponent. And them kneeling military attackers helps you to get your own through and keep their board manageable.
Thoren with Bridge of Skulls gives your opponents the following three options:
- Do a huge military challenge to prevent you from triggering Thoren. Thoren is 1 of the 2 rangers you need for Watchers, and you will always be able to save one gold to keep that threat available.
- Do a chump military challenge. You block with Thoren and maybe one of your wildlings and gain a power.
- Lose a random card.
I love combos that create lose-lose situations, and this is one of them.
By cutting Arry and Will, you're lacking for intrigue icons. Heres another one that doubles as solid claim soak that can be ambushed on demand when you need to protect Mance. I don't think I've ever triggered his ability once; mostly due to me having spare gold with meagers and White Tree in case I've been made to go first (which is often).
Cut for a Wildling Bandit
I cut Will pretty early on. I can't remember what for. Lately I've been experimenting with adding a few Haunted Forests to make Will a little bit better. But Haunted Forest is expensive for this deck. The problem with Will is that your cost curve is a bit high thanks to the First Snow build. This means that if you want to use his stealth insight, you're also probably leaving yourself open to the unopposed challenge. And if it's an unopposed military challenge? Then you just got screwed big time, because you have to sacrifice Will before claim. You can learn to play with him, but I find that he's more trouble than he's worth in my experience.
Cheap, great with Thoren, but even without it's worth 1 gold in most situations.
-1 Castle Black
Solid on your Ranging Parties and Benjen, but it's just not getting used enough with my play style to justify a slot. I cut it for Bridge of Skulls.
+2 Ocean Road
Self-explanatory with all the neutrals you're running here.
Your rangers are Benjen, Old Forest Hunter, Ranging Party, and Thoren. You'll probably have 2 of them out at least 50% of the time. This card keeps your opponents honest. You may go for a long time without getting a good trigger off, but just the threat of it forces your opponent to play differently. And if they don't? Hit em with that sweet kill effect.
This card is pretty golden in Fealty because you can pay for it with the faction kneel. But you'll often have spare change, either what you're reserving for ambush, or what you got when you were first player and triggered your white tree/meagers.
That's about it. One last note: Don't be afraid to set up white tree and one character. If you get in this spot, just open with Riddle to even things out. Sometimes you'll come out ahead on that exchange.