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The Road to Worlds: British Nationals (2E)

by Lucas Thompson, Ambassador

13th December 2018

Second Edition British Nationals winner Stuart Motley
Title: The Preposterous Niners 2019
Headquarters: Earth, Cradle of the Federation, Mouth of the Wormhole, Deep Space 9
Deck Size: 49 Cards
Deck Archetype: Midrange Solver
Dilemma Pile Size: 44 Cards
Dilemma Pile Type: Chula Attrition
Victory Correctly Predicted By: The Ninja Scot and me.

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

I haven't played much lately so I went back to what I knew best in recent times, just a different version. Although I have plenty of decks available this is the one I had most confidence in. I was just happy to meet up with the guys again.

What sorts of decks were you hoping to face while playing your deck?
I was happy to play against anything as it isn't suited to combat a specific deck.

What decks did you hope not to face?
Anything that excludes whole teams random selections, a semi-Chula dilemma is terrible against it, from previous versions there a few less Chula dilemmas with more dilemmas that choose things instead. Danny often plays Starfleet which isn't good for me, but this time it wasn't although it did have a smart exclusion element to it.

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?
As before, I've played variants of this quite a bit. After playing this version there is always a little tweaking that can be done.

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?
I knew the interrupts weren't always going to be useful but they helped to cater for a number of situations. Since there were three hosts in the deck it would be wrong to ignore The Right of Emergence which did win me one game. I was unsure about Bridge Officer's Test, again I had the personnel to be able to use it, but I didn't expect many walls from the guys.

I've included a Horgahn and an orb from previous versions. Don't know why I didn't do that sooner! The Dax/Bashiar combo for kill prevention makes them a target and the ability to bring one back again later on with an orb was invaluable.

After completing a mission against Nick, Bashir was the only person stopped after using his ability and I managed to shuffle the Horgahn to prevent leaving people lying around for him to attack. Having Richard Galen in hand to download and play again the following turn was most helpful.

One error I did make was Walk the Line, I misread this card thinking I could use a personel from hand. This card is terrible.

What would you nominate as the MVP card from your deck?
Preposterous Plan is still a winner for this deck, from previous versions I've even ditched the Promenade Schools as its slower and unnecessary. In the games against Will and Danny, I even used it to destroy temporal events rather that scoring the extra points.

For the dilemmas, Interstellar Exigence is excellent, potentially stopping three, with one being a choose and the others being random. I like to match it with dilemmas that don't go under like Where No One has Gone Before or Flim-Flam Artist - since it requires law one side and diplomacy the other (which often go together on the same personel).

Also, a question from Faithful Reader (Second Edition Brand Manager): Are there any cards from Shattered Mirror that you wish you could have used?
Sorry, there isn't a lot there for me! This set does plug a hole for [AU]. I hope in the future the other brands of [AU] get some help like TOS or Starfleet no cards in hand. Lethal Wound looks good though!

Do you have anything else you'd like to say about your deck?
Back home, as Mark will know, I do get more than my fair share of luck from random selections. Danny killed two from six but managed to pick both personnel without staffing, which probably would have given a different result to the game. Will did make a great selection of killing Sisko and Opaka with Assassination attempt only for Lojal to bring them straight back the next turn. A blue in that selection and it might not have been worth it.

Thanks to all the volunteers who keep this game alive!

My Commentary:
I reviewed a prior version of this deck back when it won a Regional in week 12 of the 2017 season. If possible, I miss Promenade School even more now!

Other notable changes include working in some Bajorans, which I like to see in an Inyo deck. The Worf/Dax/Bashir combo that's available to DS9-Earth decks is nice, but having access to The Emissary and Return to Grace Opaka and Odo (Curzon here, but I like Constable too for some interference protection) is even better. Additionally, Sharish Rez is basically always going to be free, and Kira Nerys' (Lila) ability to bring any card of your choice back to hand from your discard is incredibly useful. Those Bajorans also help you fly the Xhosa, whose retrieval ability can also win games. This deck has the Orb of Prophecy of Change, which combines well with the Xhosa - swap a cheap personnel into the discard pile, then replay them next turn after returning them to your deck with the Xhosa.

The dilemma pile adds the Chula package too, in a way that you don't see much outside of Europe (does Britain still count?). American Chula piles tend to be either all-in all-Chula-all-the-time affairs, or standard attrition piles with the Chula package, except they're slimmer to increase the odds of drawing the Chula dilemmas together. Setting the pile up like this (44 cards, while not huge, is definitely bigger than most American piles) does sacrifice some consistency, but it gains some flexibility in terms of dealing with different decks. In his interview, Stuart mentions a fear of Starfleet decks - and American Chula pile would be in even more trouble in that specific match-up, because you're more often going to draw those random selection dilemmas that don't require a skill.

I would like to briefly speak in the defense of Walk the Line. I too thought it was useless once I realized I was initially misreading it, but was surprised to then see it being used well. What you need is expendable personnel though, which this deck doesn't have. In a weenie deck you'll have plenty of Annelis to burn through in order to let others move on - its a much bigger ask in this deck to need to put someone like Kira on the event to let someone else go on.

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