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Strategy Articles

The Road to Worlds: Australian Continentals

by Lucas Thompson, Ambassador

30th August 2018

Second Edition Australian Continentals winner Steve Hartmann
Title: The Pah Wraiths are Borg Oz Champ Day 2
Headquarters: Cardassia Prime, Hardscrabble World
Deck Size: 67 Cards
Deck Archetype: Speed Solver
Dilemma Pile Size: 40 Cards
Dilemma Pile Type: Attrition (with walls)
Victory Correctly Predicted By: LORE, Latok, and jadziadax8.

Steve's Commentary:
Why did you choose the deck that you used? What other decks did you consider using?

As soon as I saw The Enemy of my Enemy I knew I wanted to play a Cardassian deck. It wasn't until I looked at decks that had already used the card that I realised how powerful the interrupt actually is.

What sorts of decks were you hoping to face while playing your deck? What decks did you hope not to face?
Things are pretty slow in Australia at the moment so I wasn't really sure what to expect. I haven't seen many play Bridge Officers Test so I figured the repeating walls in my deck Tactical Disadvantage, Gorgon and Back to Basics would give me the defence necessary to help get the deck over the line.

I considered both Clayton's Dabo-ing Ferengi and Peter's Relativity decks which I expected to face. I thought the deck had answers to both of those decks.

Prior to this tournament, did you have much experience playing this deck (or decks like it)? Did you learn anything new about it when you played it this time?
I had never played this version of the deck but it is very similar to another I played a few years back with varying success.

Adding The Enemy of my Enemy and using it to trigger off One Peerless is crazy good. Parek is the obvious target for the skill and attribute gain, One makes Gorgon an almost certain auto stop, and he helps fuel Dukat and Crell Moset. The deck really took off with these two extra cards.

I used Telle in a few games and he caused the usual rule complications.

Did you use any situational cards (cards that you wouldn't expect to be useful in every game)? Are there any whose usefulness exceeded your expectations? Were there any that you wouldn't include if you played the deck again?
Crell Moset was there to help if I faced a kill heavy dilemma pile and Tacking in the Wind to cover problematic draws and events.

On day 2 I dumped a bunch of dilemmas and added Insurrection as defence for micro-teaming to help counter my Day 1 loss. It was very helpful in the semi-final vs Peter Hill slowing him significantly on his second mission attempt.

What would you nominate as the MVP card from your deck?
It's hard to go past One Peerless. It is a real utility card in the deck fueling both the offence and defence of the deck.

Do you have anything else you'd like to say about your deck?
The Enemy of my Enemy is a better version of Covenant for Cardassians. To ensure fairness, I hope Bajorans get a better version of The Central Command :)

My Commentary:
I've written several times recently about the power of Cardassian decks since the introduction of The Enemy of My Enemy. They're good! This time, I'd like to focus on the process of updating an old deck, as Chompers has done here. It's a skill worth honing, especially if you haven't built something new in a while, and want to play something mostly familiar, but with some new twists. for reference, the link to the new deck is in the header, and there's a link to the old one in the body of the interview.

First thing to notice is that Chompers kept both the deck and the dilemma pile roughly the same size. Proportions have changed slightly, and some key cards have swapped in and out, but he's kept the general size the same.

Next, most of the changes seem to cascade from the decision to use The Enemy of My Enemy instead of Comfort Women. To get the most out of this new power card, Steve carved some room out of the non-Cardassian part of the deck for three copies of One, and added some space for three copies of Tacking Into the Wind (likely for recycling the milled cards) by cutting down the number of ships by one, cutting a few personnel, and a couple copies of Surprise Party.

As a result, the new version of the deck will play a little differently, since there are slightly more cards that will stick around in the hand in the early game. There are also fewer personnel that you can count on having in play for skills, and I suspect that drove the missions change. Deliver Evidence and its two span in space is amazing but can really dictate your personnel choices with its atypical skill requirements - it was likely a lot easier to juggle the mission skill matrix with the new mission set-up we see here.

The dilemma pile increases the number Gorgons to go with those copies of One, but otherwise it is largely uses dilemmas that are just more popular these days. I'd like to call out Occupational Hazards in particular as one that I've seen more of recently. Moral Choice is a great anti-Federation card, but it won't hit those darker-blue Starfleet cards (and Hazards likely will). Just be careful, because at least Moral Choice is good for one stop (that gets prevented) against this deck, while Hazards won't even get that.

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