Decks i play

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Decks i play

Aurore Aileblanche
Hello everyone, first sorry for my english, i am not a native english speaker.

I wanted to share with you some of the decks i have built and play for the last 2 months. I am not a casual player so the purpose of these deck is to win. I do not play decks that cannot win reliably even if they are fun. However some of them are quite original. I have tested all the decks i am going to present to you and i am able to win at least 80% of my games. But there may be better version of them so feel free to share your thoughts and your comments ! I would greatly enjoy it.
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Thunderstorm

Aurore Aileblanche
Blue:
3 Triton Assassin
4 Aqualid Hunters
4 Giant Volta
4 Triton Aquanmancer
2 Clam seas
4 Sunken Treasure
3 Shimmerpearl

White :
1 Astral Armour
4 Energise
3 Gravity Well
4 Overworld Elixir
4 Storm Core

This deck is the first deck i built including rare cards. I encountered many other players that were playing equivalent decks but my version include gravity well which is very powerfull in this deck as it reduce the health of big threats.
I found many players that were complaining this deck was an OP deck with OP cards (Triton aquamancer)  that should not be played. This is not true. This deck is a powerfull deck that has powefull cards but it can easely be defeated by good red decks or white aggressive decks. I will show you some decks that simply destroy this one. If your deck cannot beat this one, your deck is just not good enough and you should work a little bit more to build a better one.
I really recommand this deck for beginners, it is not very expensive (only 7 rares) and it is not too hard to play : just do not focus to much on triton aquamncers, play giant volta, aqualid hunter, triton assassin and gravity well first and use the aquamancer to then clean the board.

Have fun :-)
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Re: Decks i play

Quintivarium
In reply to this post by Aurore Aileblanche
Aurore,

I appreciate you posting this deck and look forward to what I hope will be future posts.  Although it is very much not the type of deck I enjoy, it appears strong and well constructed -- the type of deck people in the Spellcraft community ought to see.
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Re: Decks i play

Aurore Aileblanche
THank you very much Quint ! Yeah, i know this deck is a little bit borring to play against but it is still very effective. I could not avoid to post a version of this because it is played quite frequently. I am sur you will like next better :-)
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Fairy Tale

Aurore Aileblanche
In reply to this post by Aurore Aileblanche
Green :
4 Giant Owl
4 Faerie Enchantress
4 Chanting Druid
4 Fey spirit
4 Rooted
4 Heart of the forest

White :
4 Aeromancers
4 Cloud Fey
4 Brainstorm
4 Tornado

This deck is one of my favourite as i really like the faerie theme. Do not be abbused by the apparent weakness of the faeries, It is a very effective deck and although there is a lot of quick creatures it is more a control deck than an aggressive one as you will control the board with all your auras and then kill slowly on the Tornado lanes.

Sadly you will probably loose if your opponent plays very heavy aura destruction like calm see. If not the deck is very solid and you should win easily and elegantly.

Brainstorm is very usefull to draw your tornados if your opponent can deal with your faerie enchantress, but you can replace it by Dive if you do not have access to it yet.

Have fun !
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Re: Fairy Tale

Tsiflikas
This is my favorite of Aurore's decks and imo one of the deadliest I have ever played against. Complete control with the tornados for sure. In addition, it is the only deck that really synergizes green/forest primary with another color in a very original and satisfying way.

I don't know but green seems hard to use creatively as a primary color for me. I have see another person use a similar deck (don't remember who it was but that was awesome too.) On the downside, a trap-heavy jungle deck (paired with fire especially) with some quick creatures can really devastate it but apart from that I really think it is almost invincible.
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Re: Fairy Tale

Quintivarium
In reply to this post by Aurore Aileblanche
Thank you for this deck; it looks interesting and does suit my preference of play.  I will try it out vs. the AI and comment further later.
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Re: Fairy Tale

Quintivarium
In reply to this post by Aurore Aileblanche
I have now tried several games vs. the AI and I must say I have never seen the AI perform so poorly!  It almost always chooses to play cost 5 creatures in lanes with tornadoes rather than spending its power on something productive.  This leads me to several observations:

1.  The deck is good for clearing some troublesome AI levels as I found it handily beat certain AI levels I typically lose to  But it is horrible against vampiric touch, dragon blood, and aether levels.  It is not recommended vs. ocean faction as a large proportion of AI decks have calm seas.  It also struggles against forest decks loaded with natural order.

2.  Unless a player is hunting gold, it is not a good deck vs. the AI as the games are rarely competitive.  It is good if all you want is to win.

3.  I was surprised how well the deck played.  I have tried to construct tornado based forest/air quick decks in the past with abysmal results.  This deck works beautifully.  The key is getting enough tornadoes quickly enough while still having enough heavy hitting power left to win before the tornadoes expire.  Both enchantresses and brainstorm seem critical in this.  It is hard to judge how enchantresses alone perform by tests vs. the AI as the AI is pretty stupid in handling them, but I found games in which I would not have drawn tornadoes without brainstorm even against the AI.

4.  I struggled with both power point utilization and card management playing this deck.  Against the AI it did not matter; the deck won handily anyway.  This is likely true in PVP as well, but it makes me a bit nervous.  I frequently needed to play a tornado, but had nothing good to play with it -- I couldn't afford an owl, didn't hold an aeromancer, and lacked lanes for multiple faeries or heart of the forest.  Sometimes, I had 4 or 5 cards in hand, but still felt a need to play brainstorm to try to draw either tornados or heavy hitters (owls or aeromancers).  Sometimes I held 5 auras and still needed to tap my enchantresses because the auras I held were the wrong ones.  In fact, it was not infrequent that I held a lot of "wrong" cards -- often in multiple copies.  Mostly, it wasn't that the cards were useless -- just that using them seemed wasteful (as in playing a cloud fey as a suicide blocker, or in playing a rooted in an empty lane).  I also occasionally depleted my hand, although that never caused problems -- I was always able to quickly re-fill it.  And sometimes, due to tornadoes returning my cards to hand, I simply had to discard good cards -- something I find annoying more than problematic.  I think power point utilization is easily fixed by swapping a few faeries for dragon flies, lightning golems, or storm fiends.  Hand management may just be a matter of learning to play the deck well.  Possibly swapping out some heart of the forest (increasing chances of enchantresses drawing the more critical tornadoes and rooted cards) together with more strength 2 quick minions would help me (although I did find the health build-up to also be nice).  And neither power point utilization nor hand management issues seemed to impact the deck effectiveness (at least vs. the AI, but probably in PVP as well).

5.  The deck does have vulnerabilities.  Aura removal -- especially calm seas -- is pretty devastating.  Uncontinue might also be bad.  As with any deck relying on the quick trait, forest canopy is devastating. Rooted really lacks the duration I usually needed.  (Except when facing aerovores, tornadoes were fine.)  Play against forest dragons is tricky but not necessarily hard.  Lightning golems turn the tornadoes against you.  With a total minion strength of only 28 -- all in one health creatures -- extreme care must be taken against decks able to easily damage minions (e.g. law of jungle, fire rain, darkling assassin, and similar decks).  It is possible to have insufficient means to damage one's opponent enough to win even with ample time and tornadoes.  Despite these vulnerabilities, most decks will have no means to stop this one.  And I expect this deck will stop them well shy of victory.  I am not surprised the deck wins over 80% of its matches.
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Re: Fairy Tale

Aurore Aileblanche
In reply to this post by Tsiflikas
Thank you very much Tsiflikas ! Yes a good jungle red deck that packs enough traps may destroy enough beast to outlast the deck. But you do not have to search something so complicated to defeat this deck, a single Blessed Unicorn can be deadly if played each turn on a tornado lane as you will gain enough life points to outlast the tornados duration :-)
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Re: Fairy Tale

Aurore Aileblanche
In reply to this post by Quintivarium
Thank you Quint ! I think you said everything i should have said in the description if i were less lazy ;-)

I just wanted to add that you only struggle with card management (need to discard cards) when you are fighting decks that have no ways to deal with yours. Against decks that have effective creature or enchantment removals those extra cards would be highly needed.
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Hemorrhage

Aurore Aileblanche
In reply to this post by Aurore Aileblanche
Black :
4 Zombie Mob
4 Cloud of Bats
4 Death is inevitable
4 Cull
4 Blood Orb
4 Dark secrets

Purple :
4 Kobo Miners
4 Cave Rats
4 Omnious Eggs
4 Safehole

If you have not played against this deck before, you may found this list a little bit low on threat... It is not. This is the deadliest deck i have build in this game. It is a pure combo deck that usually kills your opponent around turn 5. I have played more than 40 games with this version and i have lost only once against Quint who was playing a white jungle aggressive decks with a really good draw.

It aspecially just destroys the decks that everyone found OP such as aquamancers decks and triton ritual/fire prism deck. It obviously still has some draw backs : heavy artifcat destruction, well placed aura destruction or high life gain (example : my fairy tale deck) can beat the deck ; but it si a very solid one.

Be carefull though, it is not that easy to handle, a little bit of practice will be necessary. Some tips :
- do not be shy on the draws : you will usually nearly draw you entire deck to kill your opponent.
- alternante your potection between safehole and creature block to make the better possible use of safehole so that you will always draw without taking any damage.

Have fun :-)
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Re: Hemorrhage

Quintivarium
I have an orb deck that I really enjoy (it is posted and discussed about seven posts into the "mindless decks?" thread), but yours is quite different.  Mine is a control deck with orbs for punch.  Yours is a speed deck with safehole for survivability.  I suspect this is another deck against which the AI will be bad (although I will try it), and I don't feel good playing someone else's deck in pvp unless my opponent gives their ok.  Thus I will ask questions relying on you're experience with it.

My deck has a much poorer track record than yours (probably under 75% and more like 50% vs good players with good decks).  So my first few questions relat to challenges I have with my deck.

1.  How do you handle chronomancers -- particularly with uncontinue, or do you have to just hope to not meet them?
2.  Have you encountered either tenticles from below or nobbling elders?  If so, is your deck fast enough to win anyway?  I see no tricks for your deck to eliminate them.  Have I missed something?  Can you win without much help from the orbs?  Or is this an automatic lose situation?  I know neither of these problematic cards are common.
3.  Darkling snatchers and smash are orher threats to blood orbs.  In your experience, does a loss of one or even two orbs stall your deck?
4.  My biggest problem is against decks with substantial area damage (voltas, fire rain, stormship, even aquamancer/energize combos) because these decks are common and prevent blocking with my weak minions.  Do your zombies and safehole effectively handle these decks, or are they a struggle for you as well?
5.  Even with four orbs, four miners, and four kobo summoners to call the kobo miners, I frequently end up with 0 or 1 orb after drawing on the order of 20 cards.  You have no summoners, but you take dark secrets instead.  Do you ever have trouble drawing orbs?
6.  With relatively few minions, your deck has limited damage potential.  Do you ever have problems with decks that generate a lot of life?  Again, these decks are rare; you may have no experience.

And now, a couple of more general questions.

7.  Roughly what per cent of your damage comes from orbs, from death is inevitable, and from minion attacks?

8.  How many cards would you typically draw using dark secrets?  Do you ever have trouble keeping your hand stocked with cards?

9.  Do you ever struggle getting necessary power to play your orbs or other critical cards?  (My deck does, but that is likely an artifact of carrying expensive cards: slavers and bodyswap.)

10.  How many times do you typically play safehole in a match?  Do you ever have trouble because you don't have safehole when needed?
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Re: Fairy Tale

MadAdaM
In reply to this post by Aurore Aileblanche
While the Air part of the deck is perfect as it is, I would think of changing the Forest part. Rooted and Heart of the Forest make it more difficult to get Tornados quickly. I would indulge for a single copy of Forest Canopy, but no other aura in the deck. I also don't like Chanting Druid and Fey Spirit that much.
Have you ever thought of something else? Maybe more Air minions with quick or with abilities triggering when they enter play?
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Re: Hemorrhage

Aurore Aileblanche
In reply to this post by Quintivarium
Hello Quint !

So i will answer to all your questions but first i have to say something more general. I am an ancient magic player and in magic we used to classify deck in 3 types that you can also find in spellcraft :

A. Aggresive deck : you try to kill the opponnent with fast aggression before he can really plays his game, in spellcraft the best example is the quick deck. (Air + fire usually)
B. Control deck : you stop all kind of aggression from tour opponent and you win in the long run, in spellcraft the triton aquanmancer / overworld elixir is a really good example of that kind of deck. But my fairy tale deck is also a control deck even if it is a bit more original.
C. Combo deck : these decks are of two types : you either try to put together 2 or more cards that are so strong when they are on the board at the same time that you just win the game : it is the triton/fire prism deck. The second type of combo deck is when you draw your entire deck killing your opponent in the process. They are a few example in magic.

This deck is a combo deck of the second type. You draw your entire deck to kill your opponent in a few turns. This deck is also the one about which Tsiflikas was talking in your thread : "Mindless deck". In fact it is not mindless at all. It was hard to build and it is also hard to play. But yes it is a frustrating deck to play against as a lot of decks have no way to deal with this one. As most combo decks you do not care about what your opponent dose unless he can kill you faster than you can kill him or he can specifically interfere with your combo.

That's said let's answer to your questions :
1. I met a chronomancer only once and he did not found an uncontinue fast enough. In fact you just have to be sure to always keep at least one dark secret in your hand as if he is able to kill all your dark secrets with one uncontinue you will die. And blood orbs ? If he use uncontinue on a blood orb just play another one, as you rarely play more than one blood orb before the last turn of the game (usually your turn 5).
2. I have encountered tenticles from below two times. I won both games. You have 4 blood orbs in the deck and 4 death is inevitable, it is enough if he do not gain life. It is just a little bit longer as you will not draw cards as fast as you usually do as he also takes your dark secrets... :,-(
3. I usually play omnious eggs before blood orb if i think my opponent plays smash. The problem is not that i loose a blood orb, the problem is i loose tempo. No darkling snatchers is not a problem at all !
4. No this deck gains usually 10 to 15 life per game with cull on your zombies. And the decks that are playing these cards are usually way to slow to have a chance. The only deck playing thes cards that put me low on life was tsiflikas jungle red deck as he was playing quite a few problematic cards (fire rain, savage trappers and essence Jar, the last one is a huge problem !!!) in a fairly aggressive deck.
5. Usually not, as once i have drawn the 4 dark secrets kobo miners search for the orb and i also have the egg that can surch for a kobo miner. No the card i may miss sometimes is safe hole.
6. Yes deck that generate life are problematic if they generate enough life (more than 2 or 3 life each turn). I have never encountered a deck of this type but i would surely loose against my fairy tale deck with this one.
7. I would say "10 to 14" , "6 to 9" and "0 to 2". (In life points not in percent)
8. I usually have less than 10 cards remaining in my deck when i win. So i would say that i draw at least 15 cards with dark secrets each game. No i never run out of cards.
9. You never have enough power, would i have enough i would win in one turn ;-) But i play fairly low cost cards to avoid power issues.
10. 2 or 3 times. Yes it happens.
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Re: Fairy Tale

Aurore Aileblanche
In reply to this post by MadAdaM
"Rooted and Heart of the Forest make it more difficult to get Tornados quickly"

No it is not true, if your opponnent was not able to deal with your faerie enchantress the turn she cames in play, he will probably not be able to do so once you have played a rooted behind her. Even if he does, rooted and heart of the forest bring a lot of time to draw your tornados. It is a control deck do not forget it. You will not win fast with this deck ;-)

You also do not fear quick decks as u win way too much life for them to compete with your deck. So Forest canopy is not needed.

But you can try wathever you can think about ! This is the beauty of the game :-)
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Re: Hemorrhage

Quintivarium
In reply to this post by Aurore Aileblanche
It is obvious from your answers that you play the deck differently than I envisioned.  Only one bllod orb in play most of the game and drawing 15 cards with dark secrets is not what I would have expected.  I think my experience with an orb deck does not apply; I am anxious to actually try yours -- as much for effective card drawing as any thing, for I have yet to be successful with that technique.

Once again, thank you for a deck to think about.
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Re: Hemorrhage

Tsiflikas
In reply to this post by Aurore Aileblanche
Aurore is right: this (along with another devastating one played by Mr. Rouge against me when I was starting out) are the kind of blood orb decks I was referencing in the other thread. Aurore even confirmed that this type of combo deck does mean a player simply does not care about what the opponent is doing (what I meant when I wrote "playing with himself") but is just focusing on getting the combo to execute properly.

However...and what I'm going to state applied to that other thread as well:

 I feel the word "mindless" to be somewhat loaded and inflammatory. No player who plays such a complex game with even a shred of success is mindless or makes mindless decks. I do feel some decks work in a predictable mechanistic fashion but I still would not necessarily call that mindless. Indeed, building these killer decks is the opposite if mindless since people would not be talking about them or copying them if they were not supremely effective (mindful) in the first place.

I'm the type of player who likes building reaction decks - possibly because when I find a strategy game I like I try to confirm to myself that it is balanced. I've always hated nerfs so I tell myself (even if in some games it is not objectively true) that no card or card combo is overpowered as long as there are thoughtful and creative ways to beat it - hopefully without creating a deck that is useful only against the killer deck but useless in every other circumstance.

So I lose a lot :) it's still fun for me trying to find the impossible response. Sometimes though (as is the case with a deck like this) you just feel that the only response is either to create a specialist deck (crammed full of item destruction/stealing and generally mediocre against other decks) or some kind of brutal rush aggro deck (similar to my red/purple that Aurore talked about in chat) which is truly mindless gameplay as far as I'm concerned (since it's my deck I'm ok saying that I think.)

For me at least as a player, a game like this lives or dies on games where both players feel that they are acting and reacting in a meaningful way - a duel of the minds like chess. I start to lose interest when I a game like this starts to feel less like chess and more like snakes and ladders.

In short, it may be (in purely tactical terms) difficult to always pull off your combos well with these killer decks but that has nothing to do (by Aurore's admission) with the skillful response of your opponent but everything to do with the luck of the draw.

Quint alluded to this in the Mindless thread so I won't belabor the point, but I think the foregoing has helped clarify for me what I wanted to say there as well.
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Re: Hemorrhage

Aurore Aileblanche
I understand what you say Tsiflikas. However you can still win against this deck without dedicating a lot of ressources to beat it. As an example, i am quite sure that my Fairy tale deck would beat this one (the good always beat the bad ;-) and it has not a single artifact destruction card. Moreover this deck is a really solid combo deck : if you do not interfere with it, it will kill you in 5 or 6 turns every single game even with bad draws. So it is more a metagame matter than a matter of luck.

A good deck that has clear path to victory do not need a lot of specific answers against most decks. But they are hard to build. My first deck, the one i call tempest is a complete reactive deck but it is still very reliable. But yes it loose hard against this combo deck. I am currently building 2 other reactive and control decks that should be able to reliably win against this one without dedicating to much cards to do so.

But do not forget that you cannot build a reactive deck that can easily beat everything. Aspecially if you are against a good deck played by a good player. And that´s fine ;-)
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Re: Hemorrhage

Quintivarium
I think I am in agreement with Tsiflikas on this one.  While I don't expect a good reactive deck to be able to easily handle anything, in my ideal gaming environment, a good reactive deck played by a good player would be as effective as quick decks, blitz decks, specialty decks (decks like prism decks, blood orb decks, energize decks, etc. built around exploiting some single ability or closely related class of features), etc. While Spellcraft does better than any other ccg I know of on this count, it is far shy of truly balancing the more defensive strategies.  I believe the situation will improve as ice and mountain are introduced (which I believe are supposed to be more defensive factions), but until items, auras, and minion powers (including quick) become as naturally countered as strength and health, reaction decks will be at a huge disadvantage because there are more potential threats than specialized countermeasures one can fit in a deck.  I intend to discuss this more in the mindless deck thread after I have sufficiently formulated my thoughts on the issue.

My two best reactive decks have about 60 to 70 percent win rates, but most wins are against lower ranked players who just don't have the cards to make the highly specialized, killer decks top players use.  I would be exaggerating to say they win 15% against decks of the quality of those in this thread.

But I wouldn't call my reactive decks bad decks: they waste few resources, they use every card to the fullest, they are well prepared for a whole gauntlet of possible opponents, and they stand up even with lousy draws.  But they're not going to outrace an opponent; they're not going to mindlessly overpower or stifle an opponent; and they're not going to follow a formula.  Every game, they will win for different reasons.  Almost every game will feel different -- even if they play the same opponent with the same deck because the draw us different.  And that is why my reactive decks are my favorites -- win or lose.
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Re: Hemorrhage

Aurore Aileblanche
I understand what you say but the problems are in these sentences :

"a good reactive deck played by a good player would be as effective as quick decks, blitz decks, specialty decks (decks like prism decks, blood orb decks, energize decks, etc. built around exploiting some single ability or closely related class of features)"

"and they're not going to follow a formula"

The basic lesson i learned years ago when i played Magic for the first time was that a good decks follow a good plan in order to win and the first quality of such a deck is consistency. When you play a deck, you have to know what you want to achieve with it, what is your path to victory. You cannot put a little bit of everything in a deck and hope for the best. Even when you play a control deck you try to do something with it. The energize deck is a control deck, my fairy tale deck is a control deck and yet you will try to reach the same goal in each game you play with these decks.

Moreover, you completely forget the metagame principle. In fact, there are plenty of solutions to beat my blood orb deck, the point is that most players are playing creatures/anti-creatures decks. So a deck that is able to not rely on creatures to win will have a strong edge in this metagame as most decks will not be prepared to beat it. However if everyone starts playing life gaining decks, like my fairy tale deck, the blood orb deck will fall behind as he will not be good in this new metagame anymore.

I would really like to see the list of your 2 favourite reactive decks to understand what are exactly the type of decks you like to play.
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