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Strategy Articles

Building Voyager (part 1 of 2)

by Matthew Zinno, Staff Writer

11th November 2013

Since Fall of 2011, the online tournament schedule has included a First Edition series called "Return to Talos IV", run in its first two years by nuttersuclan, Nava, and The Mad Vulcan (hi boss!).  The format, inspired by the "Return to Farpoint" tournament series, represents a survey through the history of the game's development.  The early tournaments allow only the early cards (Premiere, or PAQ), with more sets being added chronologically each time (and sometimes taken away, so that there are some tournaments with DS9-only or Voyager-only cards).  The last tournament of the second season took place in July 2013, and I thought I'd share with you my story of the deck I made for it.  

The format announcement for this tournament said the following:

You Are a Monument The Traditional format limits you to only the cards that were made by Decipher, excluding the virtual cards produced by the Continuing Committee. If you want to predict what deck will be powerful in that format, you might simply remember what was winning in that era.  But another clue, in case you weren't around in the game then, is to look at what strategies the CC felt the need to weaken or counter, because those strategies were so strong as to dominate.  You will find Oh No!, Displaced, Vastly Outnumbered, and other dilemmas that are stronger in a certain place. You'll find errata to Hirogen Hunt, The Vidiian Sodality, and The Kazon Collective. And finally, you'll find the magic bullet of You Are A Monument. Repeatedly, the CC has seen the need to weaken the Delta Quadrant decks and strategies, because they were so strong as the game moved into the CC era.  

What are some reasons for the DQ's dominance in a card pool like this?

Caretaker's Array So in my estimation, the Delta affiliations (excepting Kazon) were probably the most powerful in this format, and were likely to finish at the top positions at the end of the tournament.  So I knew that I wanted to play one of those.  I also counted on other players to reach these same conclusions, and figured that these affiliations would likely be taken by the top seeded players with the early affiliation picks.  

In order to decide exactly what affiliations I would submit as my top choices, I worked a little on planning each deck I might build.  I had already gotten the achievements for playing each of the affiliations, so everything was on even footing in that respect.  But some of the other achievements did drive my decision making in smaller ways.

Of these top four choices, I felt that the Non-Aligned build was the best one, with its large number of high-skill personnel.  Federation followed, then Hirogen and Vidiian.  But I was fairly certain that I was not going to get my first choice of Non-Aligned.  A few weeks earlier in the chat room, I was talking with Ken Tufts, who was not only ranked #1 in the general player rankings, but was also ranked #1 in this Talos series, and therefore had first pick of affiliation in this tournament.  He told me he was planning to pick Non-Aligned ... and I believe he even said it was for the same main reason, the skill density of Non-Aligned Delta Quadrant personnel.  Happily, I got assigned my second choice, DQ Federation.  

To be continued ... as I actually build the deck!  

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