|Card draw simulator|
Odds: 0% – 0% – 0% more
|None. Self-made deck here.|
|A Burning Reset||0||0||0||2.0|
|No Funny Stuff: Ep7 - Martel Fealty||3||3||0||1.0|
|Reset the World Greyjoy||6||1||5||1.0|
|Rain Rain Varys Away Top 4 Regional||3||2||7||1.0|
Loras Tyrell 281
This is the deck I brought to the final at Milan Fighting Pits on June 17, after 6 turns of Swiss and cut to top 16: 51 players attended the tourney.
Given the recent success of Stark Watch at US nationals I was expecting a lot of Night Watch in general, many Targ since they are the most entertaining faction and Lanni Castamere, always super solid. I chose Martell Fealty not only because it's my favourite house, but also because being so much under the radar I strongly believed I could tech against the meta and create something unexpected, which is what happened.
The main strategy I thought about is pretty clear from the deck's name: I do not like crowded boards, I am also bad at math during my games (probably bad in general :D) and wanted to get things easier by keeping the board very small, playing the attrition game against my opponents, with multiple removal effects and hopefully better economy provided by Dornish Fiefdom. Political Disasteris a key card in achieving this and it fits this deck very well, since it makes the NW matchup much easier, but it is also so good against GJ or dominance decks, and in general when the opponents spam too much economy on their board: it also helps a lot against Targ, even though it remains the worst matchup. In general, Political Disaster makes it hard for the opponent to recover after Varys, or Valar. Besides Political Disaster, the MVP of the deck is clearly "The Last of the Giants", which allows me to trigger Varys multiple times in a game without needing high-income plots. Other key cards include The Iron Throne, but also Vengeance for Elia, His Viper Eyes and Hand's Judgement who are there for both hand destruction and protection for the Varys / Giants combo: I usually picked characters with Viper's Eyes unless the opponent had a Hand's Judgement, Nightmares or Treachery, in order to make his recovery after reset even harder.
The game plan usually sounds like this: hope to setup economy and have Varys or The Last of Giants in your opening hand, also The Iron Throne is very important for both dominance and extra reserve (look at the values in my plot deck). Just reset the board multiple times and hit both economy and utility locations with Political Disasters and Pyromancers if necessary. After the first reset play Marched To The Wall if there is still someone in play, or be aggressive with Retaliation otherwise, hopefully a Venomous Blade on a chud followed by 2 claim military will help you clear the board again, extra points for 2 claim pow or int (really depends on the situation an icon spread). The average setup is usually around 4 cards if you draw into an economy location, 3 cards without any economy, but in general the characters in the deck are very efficient and I also got a few 5 cards setups during the day. Sometimes I have even mulliganed 4 cards setups in case I didn't get The Iron Throne, Varys or Last of Giants in my opening hand.
Lanni Castamere - W: triggered Varys in 1st or 2nd turn protected by Hand's Judgement, then reset almost all of his economy with Political Disaster, my opponent didn't recover. 1-0
Lanni Castamere - W: basically same as above. 2-0
Targ Castamere (what a deck from Valerio Catellani!) - L: the opponent managed to play too many dupes, I timed my Blackwater Bay wrong (one plot earlier than I should have) and didn't manage to reset the board until it was too late. 2-1
Tyrell banner Lion - W: I immediately managed to trigger Varys in T1, the opponent didn't recover and the deck went smoothly all the way. Against rush decks everything is decided in T1 or T2: if the opponents doesn’t reach 15 powers quickly, I should be able to get in control and win. 3-1
Lanni banner Rose - W: I remember the match being a bit harder than the one before (probably less of a glass cannon deck), but I was always in control after triggering Varys 1 or 2 times. 4-1
Targ Fealty - W: very tough matchup, but I got a super aggressive start thanks to 3 Viper's Eyes, Bastard Daughter and winning an intrigue challenge in the very first turn, leaving the opponent with no characters in his hand. I valared Turn 2 and controlled the board due to better economy and generally efficient characters, plus Venomous Blade killing all his chuds and providing partial protection from burn. 5-1, I was the 4th best player after swiss
Top 16, NW Fealty - W: I met Federico Fasullo who is a meta mate of mine and a great player, I know he is running a very solid NW with some interesting tech, but hope it is a manageable match where my location hate would shine. In fact, in T1 he already has The Iron Throne, my worst enemy since it cancels my own, which is one of my win conditions in long games, but I could drop a Pyromancer with Arianne in 1st turn and immediately blow it up. In the second turn I removed a copy of Eastwatch-by-the-sea in order to hit his draw engine by the next turn, while very a lucky Varys pick on my intrigue challenge forced Fede to valar away my Pyromancer, while I started making a few unopposed challenges and cumulating power thanks to The Iron Throne. Political Disaster reset almost all of his economy in turn 5 or 6 while Venomous Blade did a lot of dirty work, I slowly creeped towards 15 powers in plot 8, closing the game with renown from Myrcella.
Top 8, Targ Fealty - W: I got paired with Axxo, one of the best players and deckbuilders in Italy (also such a polite and nice person); I really didn't look forward to this pairing but it was a great pleasure to play with him. It was a very gruesome match and probably the hardest for me during the entire day, where my deck really worked at his best notwithstanding the fact that I made quite a few mistakes. I drew all my His Viper's Eyes and 2 Vengeance for Elia almost immediately and destroyed his hand in the first 3 turns (felt lucky and a bit sorry at the same time...), managing to slow him down quite a bit and cumulating points with my Iron Throne, while getting unopposed from time to time. Luckily my initial advantage was so big that I closed the game towards plot 12 (!) just when my deck seemed to be running out of gas, after 3 or 4 Valar and 3 Varys, mind games and whatsoever. I had such a great time but it was also really a very hard game, props to Axxo for being a great opponent.
Top 4, Lanni Castamere - W: https://m.youtube.com/watch?feature=youtu.be&v=gj1Cy8mCHC8 . I was paired with Roberto Cicciu, another meta mate of mine (shout out for Milan!) and, to me, one of the nicest guys in the italian thrones community, another great player who won a few tourneys this year. If I read his strategy correctly, I think he tried to be as aggressive as possible from the beginning, in order to try and close the game before I could get my control in. In fact, he didn't care about the presence of any Viper's Eyes, etc. and started doing all the challenges he could get in immediately and I actually think it was a good idea because he started cumulating powers very quickly. Luckily for me, I opened with Counting Coppers and notwithstanding the fact that I had very little economy to begin with I was immediately ready to reset with Varys (I had 2 in hand) and Last of Giants, even if I decided to wait for the second turn. In fact, after losing an intrigue challenge I drew into a Vengeance of Elia due to Late Summer Feast and I opted to use it rather than paying claim and risking to get a key card picked: during swiss I took this risk several times while having 10+ cards in hand, but in a semifinal I think this was a wise choice. On the other hand, in T2 Roby was well covered with both Treachery and Nightmares, but I managed to pick one with His Viper's Eyes and cancel the other with a Hand's Judgement, hence getting my Varys in. From that moment on Roby didn't surrender at all and tried to throw at me whatever he could get on the board, not caring weather it would get Marched or killed, but in the end I took control of the game also thanks to a well timed Venomous Blade followed by Marched to the Wall on Cersei and there wasn't much he could do to recover.
Final, Targ Fealty - L: https://m.youtube.com/watch?v=1rnB6NIT8y8. I want to spend a few words about my opponent, Luca Anzaghi, one of my best friends and the person I playtest more often with, I was so happy that we managed to break the meta with both decks we built together and the final was very relaxed, it almost looked like we were playing at home. Props to the Fighting Pits champion! His Targ Fealty is a beauty, we both know all our techs and I believe that the best deck won. The game was actually pretty fast because I didn't get any hand destruction tool at the beginning of the game and he also played very carefully, winning the power challenges he needed to get in, stealing powers I got from The Iron Throne (I felt I desperately needed some extra reserve). When I got my Varys in he was already at 13 powers and closed the following turn, but we both felt that with a few unopposed challenges less I could have survived one more turn and try a super comeback. We agreed that it would have been awesome to see a Martell deck win the tourney, but Targaryen is probably the strongest house right now, he played beautifully all day and deserved his win all the way.
Thanks to Khal Prono who organized the tourney and all the people who came visiting us, including all the guys from Poland and Austria who made a great showing. Also thanks to all the opponents who didn’t lose their patience, I had fun playing with everybody and I hope it was the same for you.