|Posted on 6 November, 2018 at 19:00|
Welcome back to "How to build a Top Tier Deck"
If you are just tuning in, you may have missed my other Articles, so please check out Part 1,2 and 3 where I have discussed Consistency, Synergy and some general tips when starting to build a new deck.
Today we are moving on to Part 4: Versatility. Versatility is something players often struggle with, some decks are innately loaded with versatility where as certain archtypes are lacking in some areas and require you to find other cards to fill holes in your stragegy to make your deck more versatile.
Lately I have been realising a lot that one of the most important things a deck can have is Versatility. As people are getting better at the game and decks are becoming a lot stronger and more consistant I am finding that a win or loss is generally decided a lot more on how far you can bend a deck and pull it away from its core stratergy without it completely failing. I've found that more of my games lately have been decided by me being able to do things my deck was not necessarily designed to do like perform a few team attacks to squeeze in VP's or switch from being pure aggro to playing defensive and passing non crucial turns.
What does "Versatility" mean to you? For me, a deck needs to be versatile to combat almost any situation that could arise during a game, whether it is a tough position your opponent has put you in or something that has happened because of game mechanics like an unlucky starting hand or not drawing the cards you need during a game. It is almost impossible to list every single situation but lets start with a few that come up regularly and some examples of how versatility can help overcome them.
For these examples I will be using my "Unexpected Turnaround" deck as we will be taking a look at some other decks later in this article.
One bad situation you can find yourself in is not having enough (or any) Characters to play, so how can you stop your opponent from just attacking every turn and winning? how can your deck be versatile enough to combat these situations?
I've been in this situation quite a few times, sometimes because of a bad draw or maybe my opponent has played an early Evil Parade, etc and left me with basically nothing. While my deck was designed to do a speciafic combo utilising Unexpected Turnaround I am able to instead use that card (or Teleportation) with some well timed Blocks to keep my opponents Characters off the field and unable to get VP's for long enough that I am able to start start drawing replacement Characters and rebuild my board state.
Another common situation you could be in is simply just wanting to draw cards, which happens basically all the time when you are playing an agressive combo deck like mine..
For me I have both Robin and Red Tornado as Characters who can offer me very decent card draw, however they are both quite specific on how they can offer that. I always find myself (After an Unexpected Turnaround) I will play a Blue Beetle followed by one of these Characters and this is where the "Decks" versatility comes in to play instead of the versitility of a single card. I can choose to play Robin if my opponent has more card advantage than me or if I need cards instantly otherwise for certain situations Red Tornado is a better option, especially if I have an Intelligence 1 and Batman ready for my next turn.
Another thing to consider with Versatility is when building a deck, does it have the ability to take on any threat you could be paired up against.
Do you have enough draw power or ways of negating serious hand control decks like the GCPD? Do you have a stratergy on how your deck will beat mill decks? Do you have ways of slowing down Aggressive decks so they dont just run away with the game? Can you deal with your Opponent KOing Characters every turn?
With a large variety of deck types and alternate play styles you will have to play your deck differently from game to game, this is where you need to be super versatile and be able combat whatever your opponents tactics might be.
I find when playing an agressive deck you need lots of draw power to keep the momentum goin, it also helps negate quite a lot of disruption that hand control decks can cause, however you also need to be able to limit the amount of cards you draw against certain decks like Mill for example. In my deck I run cards like Special 2 which offers amazing draw power but when I dont want to draw cards I can always play it out of sequence so I dont draw any cards off its effect.
Against Agressive decks and KO effects I generally find Unexpected Turnaround and Teleportation cover these decks really well by removing their Characters temporarily which usually gives me just enough time to basically "out attack" them and gain the 7 VP's needed to win. There usually isn't many times where my Opponent will benefit more from these effects than I do but in the rare case that I dont want to play these cards and I still need to be agressive 2x Harley Quinn - Heartbreaker help me squeeze through VP's while still being able to defend during my opponents turn.
Moving on, lets look at a couple of other decks that have great versatility.
Looking at the Rogues Gallery you quickly see some of their Characters have quite versatile abilities. Deathstoke allows you to search for any Battle Card with a Rank 3 or less, this effect is not only great for consistency but the versatility it can offer is just as amazing, allowing you to grab essential battle cards you need to combat any situation or game state you find yourself in. Harley Quinn is very versatile as she has one of the best defence abilities against not only Mill but also Hand Control Decks, she even helps combat other powerful decks utilising cards like Joke's on You, etc. Poison Ivy is also another very versatile Character as she can serve as an attacker or defender but when needed she can be used to steal an opponents Character who either is blocking your attacks or has an effect that they are abusing or locking you out of the game with.
While their Characters are quite amazing, their staple event Crime Spree is just as important to the decks versatility. With a similar way of changing the direction of a game as Deathstroke, it allows you to pick out specific Battle cards you need to combat specific situations.
Bryans "Potpourri Aggro/Mill"
The deck Bryan brought to the most recent MXOLT, his potpourri style deck is another great example of how versatility can be included in a deck.
The deck is on the higher end of the spectrum with a total of 7 Unique Characters, some of which have very potent effects for certain situations like Supergirl and Green Arrow. This gives the deck a bit more flexibility in what it can do and more options during gameplay especially when comboed with Battle Cards like Special 4 and STR/INT 1.
The deck also has a very strong "Mill" theme but also a decent amount of hand control options which makes cards like Special 6 an absolute powerhouse in this deck.
This deck also allows him to go for multiple win conditions either by playing more agressive and gaining VPs, milling his opponents deck or the psuedo win condition of controlling his opponents hand to gain victory. Pushing multiple conditions at the same time not only puts his opponents in a tricky situation but also allows him to change up his tactic on the fly and start pushing alternate win conditions when needed.
How have you included versatilitty in your deck? or have you versed another deck and suprised with how well it coped in certain situations?
Let us know in the comments below and stay tuned for Part 5 where we will be discussing my favourite aspect "Advantage" and what you can include in your deck to help you get that edge over your opponents.
-MetaXstreamist Ben S