|Card draw simulator|
Odds: 0% – 0% – 0% more
|None. Self-made deck here.|
Sit yourself down there, young one. There, keep warm by the fire. I have a story to tell you. It has been winter for many years - can you remember the summer? The light and the warmth and the fun you had? Yes, i'm glad. Well, forget what you thought you knew. This is the story of the strangest summer I lived in all my long years...
Yeah, I won an SC with Banterbridge. Fair warning - this deck includes a tantalising selection of intentionally suboptimal choices. Those of you who find that frustrating, who still think jank is a dirty word, GTFO. The rest of you, fellow acolytes of the church of Jank, brace yourselves. We're gonna open up this Nandora's box and have a good rummage.
No doubt you have heard legends of Banterbridge, but not all of us are lucky enough to be intimately familiar with the concept. Allow me to enlighten you, if I can. Banterbridge Encampment is, on the face of things, a Bad Card. Naturally, this drew the attention of one Josh Chambers, Jankmaster Extraordinaire. In his infinite wisdom, he realised that to make the card work, you just have to make sure that whatever you're putting down with it is always better value than what your opponent is. How to do this? Simple - don't play any characters that cost less than 4!
After seeing his initial Targ-flavoured build in glorious action, I immediately built myself a Banner of the Nan version. This oft-forgotten agenda seemed perfect for the deck, as it gives access to the correct number of copies of Old Nan. Nan is so good at storytelling that she tricks your opponent into forgetting what time of year it is, so you can use the effects of non-Summer plots and still keep your Banter rolling. Announcing that your plot is The First Snow of Summer never gets old.
Unfortunately, the 51 non-Nan non-Bridge non-Arbor cards weren't really pulling their weight. This was back in the Called to Arms meta, before Tyrell got its recent deluge of sexy-awesome cardboard, and the best 9 other Stark cards for the build were 3 each of Eddy, the Minstrel and Greatjohn's Vanguard. I built it as a rush deck, with a frankly absurd amount of renown, but that alone wasn't winning much since the deck takes a couple turns to get going anyway. I reluctantly shelved the joust version (though continued to have a blast in melee).
Fast forward to Jan 29th, in the car of DBUKFEBMNCHBBTTGANGGLP heading home from the Weekender. Dave and I were discussing plans to get to the Loughborough SC, and wondering what to play. He had the brainwave that we should both play Banterbridge, and I was of course wholly in favour, so I dug out the old Banner Nan list and had a tinker.
The result is what you see before you. Let's get into the key bits.
- Old Nan, Banterbridge, Arbor, Summer plots (because sadly there are some games in which you don't draw Old Nan): the engine. Put a silly number of big things on the table, laugh at the confusion of your opponent when you give them free stuff, cry inside when that stuff is Tywin.
- Harrenhal: the second most important and fun reason to play Banner of the Nan. With Banterbridge, Harrenhal makes a little combo I like to call 'Two Enter - One Leaves'. It's hilariously brutal. I had a testing game against Lanni in which I set up the combo and my opponent never put a character of cost more than 3 into play with the bridge for fear of me murdering Tywin/Cersei/whoever. That, my friends, is value.
- House Florent Knight, Jaqen, Roose: the attrition that my previous build was sorely lacking in. The Knight is an undeniably great card which is at its greatest in Banterbridge decks. Slight anti-synergy with Old Nan, but that's a price I'm willing to pay, especially as it can now be mitigated with the Pavilion. Jaqen combos beautifully with Banterbridge. Drop him in with it, and if the thing they drop is unique, you can immediately mark it for death. Doing just that let me kill a Jaime and a Dany at the SC. Roose is pretty mean at the best of times, but King Roose is absolutely maddening - and simultaneously hilarious.
- Riverrun Minstrel, Knight of Summer: what other deck can say that 50% of the cards at the bottom of its curve provide power gain? Going fast is pretty important with this deck. There tends to be a window in the midgame where either you've landed one of your powerful removal effects, you've hit the home run with First Snow, or your opponent has just run out of bodies to push over the bridge. You really wanna win in that window before they get their momentum back. Eddy and Renly obviously help a lot, but its these guys who provide the redundancy you need to get to that finish line in time consistently. And there's no better way to win a game than Bantering in a Minstrel. Just make sure to spend a good bit of time resolving the effects of your opponent's plot first. Every bridge has its trolls.
- Ghosts of Harrenhal: another card chosen for its wonderful synergy with Old Nan. This deck is all about doing hilarious bullshit in the plot phase. Flip this, give it the summer trait, trigger bridge, and you get to DOUBLE your hilarious bullshit factor! Also, the aforementioned Minstrel, Jaqen and HFK all have excellent comes-into-play abilities which are even better if you can do them again after they die.
- Marge, Nightmares: my concessions to trying to make this deck actually good. Somewhat blasphemous I know. But I wanted to actually have a chance in the Wall matchup, and Nightmares is a more banterous answer than FroSo. Marge makes Roose, Jaqen and HFK better, so I didn't feel too bad about her either, especially as I'm not running Randy.
- Mance: he got cut during the redraft, but had to go back in when Dave reminded me of the extra Old Nan silliness he enables. Unfortunately I never got to play him at the SC.
Nan, is this story going to finish soon? I don't know what a Banterbridge is, and I'm sleepy...
Ah, my sweet summer child, you know so little. In my day, stories about jank ran farther than a pack of Direwolves tracking a herd of Direcaribou for forty fortnights. There is more still to tell.
Next, a few insights/boasts from key matches.
Firstly, I'm sure that I was only able to win the thing because I dodged Dave in the swiss. We played the mirror match at his a couple nights before, and it was absolutely terrifying. His build was Banner Watch, christened Shrodinger's Banter because it can be both Top Banter and Anti-Banter at the same time. Bridge-on-Bridge was a mess of challenge math, but he certainly had the edge thanks to the Wall.
That said, I did actually manage to beat a Wall deck in the top 4 of the SC. Though my opponent Chris made no play mistakes, he did make a critical error of attitude on turn 1. Realising he wasn't able to defend the Wall against Syrio, he attacked, catching me off guard and killing Old Nan! The ignominy! Obviously, this fired me right up, and I played one of the best games I've ever played to avenge her. Much and More got me Renly's Host to ensure the wall knelt turn 2, a Florent Knight discarded one Aemon from play and a second for intrigue claim, the Host's Intimidate plus Roose killed the third Aemon and knelt the Wall again, Syrio got killed and brought back as a Ghost to cure an untimely opiate addiction, and First Snow -> marshal Harrenhal against a 3 cost board guaranteed that I could close. Call me boastful, but when this pile of jank can face off against 2 Haunted Forests and the Wall from turn 1, and stop the Wall from triggering even once, without using Nightmares, I feel entitled to a little pride. #BridgesNotWalls
Before that, in the swiss I played against Lanni Fealty, Lanni Stag, Tyrell Rains and Targ Crossing, piloted respectively by Billy, Keb, Andy and, inconveniently, the only one of the 4 Daves in attendance who didn't have a distinguishing nickname. Keb was my only loss - and he beat Dave too, so he shall henceforth be known as the Burner of Bridges (or would be if that wasn't quite a cruel nickname despite the pun value). That was a great game. I got a good lead going, but Keb played a masterful Valar, taking a big hit on his own board to reset mine when I wasn't expecting it, then Tears-ing my Eddy to come out ahead. In hindsight I might have been able to pull back through though. I rebuilt my board and managed to stop Keb at 14 a couple turns later. Then, in the following challenges phase, King Roose cleared his board down to just Mel and Littlefinger, and I still had the strength to win power on attack and defense. But unfortunately I had spent a Nightmares at the start of the phase to blank Tyrion's stealth instead of Casterly Rock, forgetting Roose was going to murder the halfman anyway. The extra intrigue got Keb the unopposed he needed to finish handing my ass to me.
I should talk about the final as well - it was against Our Lord and Saviour JCWamma. I'm sure he'll publish his silly silly deck somewhere around these parts soon, so I won't say much about it. The game was decided early though, as his start was very poor and I had Bridge + Arbor by turn 2. First Snow + Jaqen wiped his board, and even though he made the masterful stroke of playing Ghosts to force me to discard Old Nan with my own Florent Knight, there was no way back.
Dave finished 2-2 in the end, losing to both halves of the Waumsley-Frith axis. However, he did get to Bridge in Craster after a Wildfire in one game to bring back a Florent and discard a Marge, so I assume it was all worth it.
Ok, that's finally enough rambling I think. Deck is jokes. Play it to confuse your friends, have a lot of silly fun, and realise this game is not always what it seems.
Nan bless xx