Brief Summary of Build
UPDATE (22-Apr-2017) Card Replacement Added R2/R3 choices to follow.
UPDATE (18-Apr-2017) Mulligan guide also CHANGED FIRST LIGHT with BITING FROST to combat those pesky dwarves (how to use: mulligan hard for it on first round keep it as last card. While they are trying to D.bomb you, you have a frost bomb of you own : ) ). Possible Borgh for IGNI have not been totally convinced with it yet as decrease in winrate against other decks.
UPDATE (17-Apr-2017) OVER 75% WINRATE
Super fast climb from RANK 12 to 15 in a couple of hours!
Why it works. Why it is better than the gwentlemen version.
It is very efficient and in gwent right now efficiency wins.
A. Promote although an amazing card, 3 is often overkill due hero power and there is an associated tempo loss as oppose to playing a minion.
B. Villentretenmerth/Borgh is a great gold card but...
2. People have started running D. shackle
3. Counter synergy as you are forced to use three promote otherwise risk losing your minion.
C. Most people now include Menticore venom to counter the Siege towers but with this deck siege towers often come down as stronger than 4!
Matches if played correctly.
Favourable matches against SC, NR, NG over 65-75%
Favourable against weather monster and SK 55-65%
Unfavored against Consume monster approx. 40-45% win rate
This deck focuses on putting massive value on your board as a oppose to trying to half ass between buffing and removal. Often I can generate more than 100 points on more than 1 round.
First few turns used to place snowball cards baron/dandelion/k. siege expert who either generate too much value or force opponent to use up all removals (most players do not run more than 3 hard removals), then place trebuchet who gets massive buff and acts as a shield for the upcoming play as well as provide poke damage. Last few turns focus on bringing out siege towers that will often come out as at least 7 strength and turning them into gold bringing the round out of opponents reach.
Shani, Yen : No viable replacements
Villentretenmerth for IGNI
Phillipa > Ciri > Triss Butt > Yen Con (in that order) for Baron
Nenneke, Priscilla : No viable replacement (core of NR)
King of Beggars is a key card too (strongly encourage to craft as top priority, as card is viable in ALL DECKS and ALL FACTIONS). Honestly, this card is a strategy of his own. You should always have a good idea what he will pull. If you have 2 reaver scouts in hand and KoB he will pull Priscilla that is often ideal scenario. Meaning in mulligan if you have 2 reavers a kOB then blacklist Priscilla. If you played Priscilla and reavers he will pull out roach if no gold cards played (worst scenario Totally avoidable and you should avoid it). If reavers, Priscilla and roach played he will pull random 4 value (the later he is played the more field medics or k. siege expert used the higher chance to pull nenneke). What does this mean? In order to max. efficiency KoB should either be played early for Priscilla value OR late for highest possible nenneke chance if not pulled by Priscilla.
Roach is great but replaceable besides thinning deck and adding more value to golds he has synergy with Baron's lumbbrekin who will buff roach if not immediately answered. Also synergy with Yen's Unicorn as an additional body to obtain buff.
Can replace with D. Bomb > Prince Stennis > aeromancy > Octavist (in that order)
Decoy can be replaced as above but it is given at Level 20.
Not much to add here if you dont like a card swap it and test it out, for example D. Shackle or another promote or trebuchet for K. Sergeant.
Adapting in card game is key.
I added biting frost for first light to deck mainly to combat dwarves it has improved win rate. Key is either to hold it in round one as final push or if it is out of reach keep it for round two play. Bait all their first lights which they will not save vs this deck and bait their buffs and then play biting frost.
IDEAL: ROUND 1
TURN 1 R 1: Bloody Baron/ Dandelion. (Either win round outright or bait removal, haha i had many NR players concede first turn because they run few removals)
T2 R1: K. Siege Expert. (Very under appreciated, has snowball potential as well can be the suboptimal T1 R1 play if you dont have Baron or dandelion in Round 1. This card can really mess with players as well because they fear you will have more than one and it becomes a high priority removal target which is fantastic for a bronze card.)
T3 R1: Trubechet. (Protects siege towers from scorch, provides poke damage)
T4 R1: Siege Tower. (Now that the opponent has most likely wasted all his removal and under protection of the higher point Trebuchet it is safe to play!)
T5R1: Either Reaver Scout/ KoB --> Reaver Scout/ Priscilla to bring out the rest of the siege towers and line them up. NOTE: Dont get to greedy and try at all cost to play 3 Siege towers, 2 towers with a trebuchet is fine to promote
NOTE: IF ANY TOWER FALL THIS IS TIME YOU USE FIELD MEDIC. GOAL is for at least two towers to be up.
T6 R1: Promote/ Henselt / Priscilla looking for promote --> Siege Towers (even with two towers and a trebuchet usually puts round out of reach of opponent once turned to gold)
WIN. (If still contesting)
T7 R1: Finish with YEN or IGNI (Depend on your draw if you happen to have both YEN tends to be more impactful R1)
WIN. (If player still contesting)
T8 R1 K. Sergeant Either YEN or IGNI (sometimes this is done even if opponent passed and you play a card down for the utility of replaying baron/igni or yen another round but WARNING this is not always the optimal play! (Will expand further if I get interest from players).
Ya but GWOON what if I dont get the ideal hand? Dont panick, you will be fine. IF you dont have baron or dandelion in starting hand, play K. siege expert to start round. if you dont even have K. siege expert then start round with Trebuchet. If you dont have a trebuchet to start round (then it is you! work on your mulligan : ). Ultimately, start the turn with the card that is highest up the IDEAL turn pattern and continue from there.
When to play Field Medic is more complicating to say. The goal is to keep your siege towers up. Play it in between the ideal turn patterns when ever siege towers fall. Even if you have only one in hand you can use Reaver scout on the played field medic to make sure Siege Towers are up. It is not wrong to revive trebuchet if that is what is protecting your two siege towers.
Why such a long winded guide to ROUND 1? Simple! Based on my experience if you do NOT win ROUND 1, you LOSE game with NR.
First thing to know is that gwent has a unique mulligan system. It is NOT RANDOM. (Please find details in general discussion). The gist: the first card you blacklist has a high chance to be drawn on subsequent rounds where as the third card that is blacklisted often will not be drawn in that game.
With this in mind, the general opening hand to keep
1-2 reaver scouts, 1 field medic, KoB, Priscilla, 1 trebuchet, 1-2 siege tower, dandelion, K. siege expert, Baron, Yen, Igni
Second field medic (keep when facing decks with heavy removal ie you keep against control scoietal, weather monsters, Skellige but you do not keep against dwarves deck, consume monsters and NR unless facing radovid or folstad).
Decoy keep only if you have PrIscilla> KoB> Nenneke in that order if you have none of those mulligan away
Second trebuchet or siege tower (especially keep if you have K. Siege expert but sometimes you want to make sure you have Priscilla and blacklisting second trebuchet or siege tower especially if you have reaver scout in hand is not wrong).
Nenneke (generally keep a lot of utility but if you holding two field medic may opt to either remove one medic or nenneke as you need more proactive cards, again if you are going to mulligan away any of these two cards you do it as the first blacklist)
K. Sergeant only keep in hand if you have Baron or Yen in hand. Sometimes IGNI especially against consume monsters or dwarves deck.
Shani I would only mulligan her away if you have all four gold cards in hand. Although flashy your gold cards rely on proactive cards. So having 4 gold cards and no proactive cards will not help with round one. If you do mulligan her she is TOP PRIORITY TO BLACKLIST FIRST.
first light (only time i keep this card in opening hand is against skellieger- mainly against coral some play with aeromancy as well or when I see a Dagon)
Second promote: Often you want a promote on turn three you dont have to hold in opening hand. Only exception I would say is against new dwarves deck bait their D. bomb then henselt hero power, or against weather monster protect against weather effect.
Roach (however always blacklist LAST!)
third siege tower (with reaver scouts or KoB third siege is redundant and slow)
RECAP BLACK LIST PRIORITY ORDER (IF YOU MUST THIS IS WHAT YOU BLACKLIST FIRST): Shani > Nenneke > second Field medic > decoy > siege tower > trebuchet > k. sergeant > promote> first light> roach due to reasons explained above
NOTE: Priority oder does not mean that is what you blacklist first in all situations ie Roach is always blacklisted if drawn it is just that you black list that last. The cards that are blacklisted depend on my mulligan order above (opening hand guide). Hope this is not confusing : )
Hopefully this will pick up your win rates.
NOTE: New dwarves deck and consume monsters are an unfavored matches so if facing a lot of that in rank switch up decks no deck is full proof. I have found borgh useful instead of IGNI as it often either uses up their D.bomb or it beats their buffed dwarves! but you have to bait their D. Shackle first if they run it which should not be hard with all the snowball cards that demand removal.
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