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Strategy Articles

A Different Kind of Hirogen Deck

by Jeremy Commandeur, First Edition Director

13th January 2009

Hirogen going back in time to hug a tree and save the whales. Hirogen taking over Empok Nor and Processing Ore. Hirogen solving Earth. Hirogen hanging out with Lore, Dixon Hill, Morn and the Orion Syndicate. Hirogen cashing in some latinum. Hirogen with no Delta Quadrant missions. Do I have your attention? Good. Let's look at a different kind of Hirogen deck.

Hirogen are one of the strongest and most over-used affiliations in the game. They can copy multiple skills multiple times from opposing personnel, all report for free with a single seed card, download multiple ships in place of card draws, have a very high skill concentration, and have a gun that boosts both strength and cunning.

It's no wonder then that the Hirogen won the First Edition World Championships this year. They are arguably the strongest affiliation in the game. Certainly one of the top three.

If you are new to the game, Hirogen are a great place to start. Buy some booster boxes of The Borg, trade a bit, and presto! You will have a top-tier, tournament-competitive deck.

Because of their strengths, I typically don't find building a new Hirogen deck to be that exciting. So I decided to challenge myself and build a Hirogen deck that operates entirely in the Alpha Quadrant. How is that possible? Take a look at the visual decklist I have posted here in PDF form and see if you can figure it out.

My buddy OorylQrygg has often wondered if the abundance of backwards-compatible "Any Affiliation (Except Borg) may attempt" missions would ever amount to something interesting happing in First Edition. Now those missions have done just that, by allowing the Hirogen to operate entirely in the Alpha Quadrant and still solve missions.

Allow me to explain how the deck works.

  1. On the first turn, close the spacedoor to download Venatic Hunter (spacedoor overrides the quadrant restrictions) to the Neutral Outpost. Discard Assign Support Personnel to send Harkan to the ship. Play a Non-Aligned personnel with a staff icon for free to War Council. The ship is now staffed; load up and head off to Historical Research. Send Harkan and Kathleen back in time via the Guardian of Forever. In place of the end of turn draw, download Rituals of the Hunt via Hirogen Hunt and slap rituals on any opposing personnel. For this deck, going second is an advantage as there are more opposing personnel to choose from.
  2. Now that Rituals in in play, Alpha Hirogen can report directly onto the Venatic Hunter for free. All but two of the personnel in this deck play for free; Hajur and Selok will both cost a normal card play. Report Selokby using the Temporal Microwormhole so that she works with the Hirogen. Use her to allow a mission attempt at Earth, or to score bonus points from Assign Mission Specialists for solving Historical Research.
  3. Bring Kathleen, Harkan and other Hirogen back from the past to draw cards with the Guardian of Forever. Note that this deck calls for eight copies of the Guardian, one to download during the seed phase and seven in the draw deck. Don't forget to download the whales George and Gracie) during the seed phase as well.
  4. When ready, commandeer Empok Nor to load-up on equipment. Morn can cash in the Latinum at Earth to download Borg Nanoprobes or Emergency Transport Unit (my favorite backwards-compatible card).
  5. The goal of the deck is to get a two-mission win by first solving Historical Research for 45 points using Kathleen and/or Selok. Next, solve Mining Survey (the Science Lab will help) or one of the other space missions with a mission specialist for another 40 points. Finally, bring the whales to Earth for 15 more points to finish off the game.
  6. Earth can be solved by using Dixon Hill or Rituals on opposing personnel that have the right skills.
  7. Lots of the personnel in this deck die to The Weak Will Perish, hence the Borg Nanoprobes for defense.
  8. To further protect your key personnel, you have the "can't touch this" tag team of Alternate Universe Garak and John Doe. Garak can save John from random selections, John can save Garak, and both of them can save your key personnel from dying (keep in mind that John only works in space).
  9. There is a spare Rituals of the Hunt in the tent just in case the opposing personnel that is the target of Rituals is killed.
  10. This deck was built for Standard format. Thus, I only needed to include a few Referee icon cards. However, with a bit of tweaking, it could function in Open or even in Highlander.

Now I just have to figure out how to build a Gamma Quadrant Hirogen deck. I have to find a way to deal with all of those @$%*& 5- and 6-span missions. I think we need more backwards-compatible Gamma Quadrant missions. Maybe I can send Brad a bribe...

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