Old decks revisited

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Old decks revisited

One of the features of Ice faction which I have noticed is that it re-opens deck possibilities that previously just didn't work well.  I will give a few examples below, but but I first want to discuss what I see as features of ice that make it a great support for certain types of decks.

First, ice is excellent at reducing opponent strength.  I have found that nothing defends better than reducing opponent attack strength.  Thus, strategies that were previously too slow may become viable because ice buys them enough time.

Second between kobo shaman and essence egg, ice is able to draw auras quickly -- and frost fey help maintain auras that otherwise expire too soon.

Third, ice has numerous synergies that help previously insufficient cards.

Here are some examples:

1.  Wolf decks.  Even with wolf pack and fire wolf, it was too hard to draw enough wolves in close enough proximity to justify the use of 8 cards.  And neither wolf pack nor firewolf was a good enough card to to inspire use without augmentation from other wolves.  With tundra wolves, this changes.  Tundra wolves have sufficient defensive value (3 health + evasive) that they do stand alone at cost 2 power.  And they are far more likely than either fire wolves or wolfpacks to last long enough in play for another wolf to arise.

2.  Psychic vortex decks.  The problem with psychic vortex has always been inconsistency.  It is hard to design decks that work well with varying maximal levels of power points.  Thus decks designed to work with psychic vortex typically failed unless psychic vortex could be played early in the game.  Even fairy enchantress could not draw psychic vortex swiftly and consistently enough to justify the other adaptations required for a deck to work with psychic vortex.  That is no longer true with ice's awesome aura drawing abilities.  Ice also has other cards (aurora, brain freeze) that support attacking opponent power supply.

3.  Hand attack decks, e.g. accursed decks or forced discard (miasma, screaming skull, gargantula) decks.  The problem with these decks is that hand attack alone does not win games; board position wins games.  Hand attack is only useful if it helps establish superior board position.  I could never find a way to reduce an opponent's hand fast enough to justify the resources (cards and power points) to justify it.  Now multiple accursed cards can be consistently drawn before the opponent has already filled the board with units.  Forced discard is helped more subtly: ice power reduction helps skulls hit to invoke their power, and the strength reducing ability of ice helps insure that an opponent will need a steady supply of fresh, reasonable strong units -- it creates situations where reduced hands significantly hurt an opponent.

4.  Deck depletion decks.  Most quality opponents have numerous decks that win very quickly.  While it is possible to defend against a known strategy, it is almost impossible to defend against everything.  Thus, even with a highly defensive deck, most games end well before decks are depleted.  Prior to ice, it was hard to force opponents to lose more than a handful of cards from their decks.  Creeping cold can cause a much higher rate of card loss.  And ice's strength zapping significantly reduces the number of decks that can win quickly.

5.  Gravity well decks.  These decks may still not work well, but at least gravity wells can be drawn in a timely fashion and kept in play sufficiently long.  The issue of how to use gravity wells to facilitate winning remains.  Unfortunately, the highly useful jungle cards (like piranha) now become prohibited

6.  Tornado decks.  Tornado decks were arguably useful before.  Now however, tornadoes can be called more quickly and can remain almost indefinitely in play with frost fey.

There are certainly numerous other examples; I have simply give a sample of those I have tried.  The important point -- especially for experienced players -- is that previously unsuccessful deck ideas may be viable now.
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Re: Old decks revisited

Great analysis Quint!