What's New Dashboard Articles Forums Chat Room Achievements Tournaments Player Map The Promenade Volunteers About Us Site Index
Article Archives
First EditionSecond EditionTribblesAll

All Categories Continuing CommitteeOrganized PlayRules CommitteeDeck DesignsVirtual Expansions
Card ExtrasSpecial EventsTournament ReportsEverything ElseSpotlight SeriesContests
Strategy Articles


The Road to Worlds: Regionals Week 9

by Lucas Thompson, Ambassador

31st May 2018

First Edition Online (not but actually now a) Regional winner Jon Carter
Title: Mr Meeseeks, give me a Pustervik!
Deck Archetype: Interference (battle)
Play Engines: Protect the Timeline, Smugglers' Rendezvous, Drone Control Room
Draw Engines: Temporal Shifting, Temporal Almanac, Finally Ready to Swim, Remote Interference
Bonus Point Mechanics: Assign Mission Specialists, Holographic Camouflage
Victory Correctly Predicted By: bosskamiura, Armus, monty42, and pfti.

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

I have been tinkering with a bunch of decks, but none of them are where I wanted them to be. So I went looking for a fun battle deck to play (as the online meta sustains it so well). I saw this Meinhard S. Rohr original, made a few small tweaks to the tent and went with it.

What sorts of decks were you hoping to face while playing your deck? What decks did you hope not to face?
Hunting Borgs might have been tough. Otherwise, this deck is fast and furious. So a good number of matchups seemed okay.

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 underused the ability to download temporal agents in all my games. This was my first time using Temporal Benefactor. The draws and the downloads are all great.

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 didn't use large chunks of the tent (which are situational) but I think it is right that they should be there. Otherwise, I think this deck is in a good place.

What would you nominate as the MVP card from your deck?
Temporal Almanac. The extra draws and interrupts speed are great. Otherwise, the personnel were solid at mission solving to the point I never got to blow up too many things. However the threat of battle did slow down opponents and there was some good murder in space.

Do you have anything else you'd like to say about your deck?
Battle is fun. More people should try it.

My Commentary:
This deck will look familiar; it is largely the same as the deck from Mr. Meinhard S. Rohr, the one he used in the Swedish National Championships back in week six. You may also recall that there was a lively group photo attached to that interview, one adorned by a Continuing Committee logo. I'd like to take this opportunity to publicly apologize for applying censorship to the First Edition European Championship belt. I thought doing so in a humorous way might kill two birds with one stone by being amusing to those who didn't feel the image needed censorship, while also actually obscuring the nature of the belt to those who would want it to be censored. Please accept my sincere apologies.

As far as discussion of the deck itself goes: Jon is right, a draw engine at interrupt speed is very flexible and powerful. The obvious strength is that it keeps your card play free for use on other things, like ships and key personnel, or even another draw engine (like the Temporal Shifting that shows up here). The other benefit is you can still do your drawing during the play cards phase, like you can with the card-play draw engines. That's a subtler benefit, but I've had several high-level players preach the benefits of play phase or even order phase draws, since you still have time during your turn to use the cards you've drawn. As great as end of turn draws are, since they open up the card play for other use too, you have no more opportunity to use those cards you've drawn until your opponent's turn.

I'm also starting to be a little concerned about the prevalence of Temporal Benefactor. I've been seeing it in a lot of winning decks, and it is a really cool card that I'm glad is seeing play, but it is everywhere it seems. But perhaps more concerning to me than how often it pops up (and in how many decks), is how much it can do. It enables widespread skill gaining, it helps you run your interrupt-speed draw engine. That would probably be enough, but it also can dial-a-personnel to a degree and downloads Timepod Ring for easy AU-dilemma nullification and empowers you to swap dilemmas for something more appropriate to the situation. No two elements would be too much, but all five together just seems... above the curve.

Second Edition Kazon Collective Regional winner Peter Hill
Title: Peter Hill Relativity V2
Headquarters: Prevent Historical Disruption
Deck Size: 50 Cards
Deck Archetype: Midrange Solver
Dilemma Pile Size: 46 Cards
Dilemma Pile Type: Attrition
Victory Correctly Predicted By: prylardurden.

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

I've found that the Relativity deck has played well in the few games I have played since moving to Tasmania. I've updated it after each game and it's pretty much a solid deck at the moment. Be interesting to see if there are any cards in the new set that might enhance it.

My other favourite deck is a Khan/thief deck with all planets, including Genesis Planet that I destroy to get a space mission. It plays well locally but doesn't have the power of the Chakotay/Revised Chakotay combo for saving and bringing back crew.

What sorts of decks were you hoping to face while playing your deck? What decks did you hope not to face?
I know the regular decks that are played, especially Clayton's Ferengi Steve's Bajorans and Kierans Star fleet. I'm looking forward to Continentals and Worlds but think I need to tinker with my dilemma combos a bit more: pretty tough where there's no local competition and play testing myself is a danger as I always know what's coming in the six or so decks I use.

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?
The other cards that are a must in this deck are Temporal Transporters and I always pack Trellium-D, other 1 cost equipment, Grav Plating Traps and Tacking into the Wind to nuke my opponents events and interrupts.

My teams often get slaughtered every now and then but I can always get them back! Very frustrating for an opponent when Data Lucasian Chair is killed or Secret Identitied 2 or 3 times and he always comes back!

Do you have anything else you'd like to say about your deck?
It's a good deck and I hope to continue improving it.

My Commentary:
I'm going to mostly skip to the dilemma pile - the draw deck here is a good, honest Relativity midrange solver draw deck, but there aren't many of the tech cards that I can call out and talk about. Resilience is one that doesn't show up a whole lot, and can really save you when you need it, but you won't often need it. On the other hand, there's very little opportunity cost for including it - all you've got to do is draw it, and then it's free to play. Once it is in play, you could then even use it as Chakotay fuel, should you decide to use a Temporal Transporters on Bridge Chakotay (presumably once you've already discarded him with Revised Chakotay).

On the dilemma pile side of things, there are plenty of nice, juicy, remarkable choices. I believe I've already written about the "space-heavy" style of dilemma pile once this year, so I'll give you the short version: Yes, most players complete fewer space missions than planet missions, but, they go to space first, when they have fewer tricks to protect them. Some dilemma piles a built to really capitalize on this opportunity to come down hard on an unprepared player.

One thing I love seeing is three copies of Entanglement... in a pile that doesn't have All-Consuming Evil! I usually only see it when Guillotine and Tragic Turn are chewing through my personnel, but there's plenty of reason to use it outside of those piles. Say you're setting up to send your opponent on a trip (Where No One Has Gone Before). What would it be worth to you to make sure that trip happens? Would it be worth two extra dilemmas under the mission? That's what you need to ask yourself, and I think the answer would pretty often be yes. Peter has a lot of the 4-cost multi-stop dilemmas in this pile (3 Intimidation, 3 Chandra), and having a little grease in the form of Entaglement can really help those dilemmas come through for you, even when you don't have much to spend.

Second Edition South Africa Regional winner Markus Glatz
Title: Excelsior Season 1, Act 2 Jem'Hadar Strength Solver
Headquarters: Founders' Homeworld, Home of the Great Link
Deck Size: 35 Cards
Deck Archetype: Speed Solver
Dilemma Pile Size: 27 Cards
Dilemma Pile Type: Chula Attrition
Victory Correctly Predicted By: None.

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

In all honesty I received a tremendous amount of help in building my deck from Fritz. In fact he built the entire deck for me. I was either going to choose the Dominion - Jem'Hadar or Federation. I have often played the Federation [Fritz: Markus has played Commons DS9 a lot], it was the first time I played the Jem'Hadar.

What sorts of decks were you hoping to face while playing your deck? What decks did you hope not to face?
I had no idea what to expect. Luckily my dilemma pile was good enough to adapt to other decks, regardless of their strengths.

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?
No, most of the cards were quite expensive counter wise, but they had decent abilities. I feel that the games came down to choosing the right dilemma's to stop your opponent.

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?
Hard to say, certainly found the interrupt card Uninvited very useful.

What would you nominate as the MVP card from your deck?
I would go for the dilemma Agonizing encounter, most of my opponents had a common skill required by their missions. Against one opponent I got to randomly stop 4 personnel and I only needed that one dilemma to stop him.

Do you have anything else you'd like to say about your deck?
Nothing to add, was fortunate to win.

My Commentary:
This is our first Excelsior-format deck! Excelsior is a new-player friendly format, and has a much smaller card pool than complete constructed format. That makes it sort of like Standard format in Hearthstone or Magic, but it also has an ongoing storyline. In Season 1, act I, we saw conflict between the Klingons, the Romulans, and the TNG Federation factions. Now that we're just starting act II, the Klingons have withdrawn from the conflict, replaced by the Cardassians and Dominion affiliations. Player performances with those factions will determine which ones continue on into act III.

In act I, I recall seeing TNG micro-teaming decks dominating early on, relying on high cunning personnel like Barclay and Lore to power through missions after accumulating a few dilemmas. Those personnel aren't in the pool anymore, but the Dominion provides something just as good: cheap Jem'Hadar with 8 strength. The Stakoron missions from the complete card pool aren't around, but Markus still had some very nice strength-based Gamma quadrant missions to go after. And those Jem'Hadar are going to be hitting those missions pretty quickly with three copies of Mobilization Points in a 35 card deck.

The Chula dilemmas have made an appearance now in act II, and should buy the Jem'Hadar plenty of time to solve those missions. It's true that Cardassians are out and about, and are known for their stop prevention, but in Excelsior format you're limited to Crell Moset, who can only prevent a stop from The Chandra (the rest of the Chula dilemmas cost 3 or less). Markus is even running three Uninviteds in order to either guarantee a The Game draw on an initial attempt, or make sure he can get a cheap Chula dilemma when his opponent gives him 1 or 0 to draw and spend. I'm surprised not to see the Chula package of dilemmas in more of the decks at the top of this event - those dilemmas are good enough to see play in complete constructed decks, I imagine they'd do pretty well in Excelsior.

First Edition Washington Regional winner Justin Ford
Title: Bajoran Solver 4.0.0
Deck Archetype: Defensive Solver
Play Engines: Chamber of Ministers, Bajoran Resistance Cell, Quark's Bar
Draw Engines: Bajoran Resistance Cell, We Need You Here
Bonus Point Mechanics: The Genesis Device
Victory Correctly Predicted By: jadziadax8, LORE, Latok, DarkSabre, and Monty42.

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

It's no secret people know that the Bajoran solver is probably my favorite deck to play and with the numerous iterations it has gone through it finally has adapted to changing strategies mid game based on the flow of the opponent. I also have my MACO deck put together but it came down to what I enjoy playing. The Bajoran deck is fun to play and has a lot of tools to deal with a multitude of circumstances.

What sorts of decks were you hoping to face while playing your deck? What decks did you hope not to face?
Up in this area we all basically run speed solvers. Interaction really isn't a thing here but the deck can deal with interactive based decks fairly well. One main reason I switched ships to the Bajoran Warship and keep my battle bridge is to deal with battle decks. Not only do I have my HOMEWORLD to stage at but also DS9 if I decide to seed it at another mission. Not to mention the cloaking device and 10 base range.

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 would say we can go back especially 3-4 years when the first baseline of the deck was using Bajoran orbs and orb experience to cheat through second mission to win. I have long abandoned this due to the increased peaking penalty dilemmas. I also dabbled with using Genesis Effect and various other bonus point schemes in previous iterations.

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 would say this iteration doesn't have necessarily situational cards but the deck as a whole is robust and can over come adverse events. In the final game against Richard I did not anticipate crystalline entity which I should have since I used to use this dilemma. So there went all 12 people in play, but I was able to use the science lab in DS9 to get advance warning hoping for no peekaboo dilemmas, which is a risk, but it would be far better to help me determine what personnel I need to play to pass through the dilemmas.

What would you nominate as the MVP card from your deck?
Science Lab - risk v reward - no peekaboo dilemmas here today.
Dabo - this got me the mod win against Michael as we both had two missions. I was able to keep Michael from Dabo with Lore protecting morn at the bar to Dabo and drink alone.

Do you have anything else you'd like to say about your deck?
This deck for the most part plays it self and the best part I have 8 different missions I can swap in to adjust strategy based on who I am facing. The dilemmas also can be changed to adjust strategy since the deck is almost on auto pilot. The most important lesson I have learned over the years is to ensure the deck has different paths to victory, one trick ponies can be susceptible to road blocks that can ruin the game. I can do two mission win with genesis or with Dabo or simply do 3 missions. I could also move and engage battle if the situation is right to help my game.

My Commentary:
I really like seeing Justin use the Bajoran Warship. I've seen a lot of Bajoran decks run a whole bunch of Gantts, just because he's a rare Bajoran Alternate Universe-icon personnel, and you've got to pass Quantum Incursions somehow. However, I haven't seen those decks run the Bajoran Warship. It only takes one AU personnel to fly, provides much more protection than the freighters we usually see in Bajoran decks (especially with Rinnak Pire to captain it), and that ten range can be really impactful. Whenever I consider the value of high-range ships in First Edition, I think of the table in this classic COTD article. I imagine the probabilities have slightly changed over the years, and it could probably be redone based on what missions are actually used, but I suspect (anecdotally) the findings would be similar.

I've been seeing Silent Enemy popping up more and more frequently. Spaceborne Entity has the better stats for a self-controlled ship that appears at the attempting location, but for it to hit the ship you still need another dilemma to stop the attempt. Silent Enemy has the advantage of attacking immediately and ending the attempt. It won't always damage the attempting ship (and doesn't use either player's tactics in battle), but usually that stop is enough. And hey, it might hit, and then it would use the tactics for damage, potentially killing some personnel.

As a side note: It's not often that an expansion comes out and removes card in your deck, but Metamorphosis converted both 2e Bareil and Jo'Bril into verbs that did not make the final cut here. Justin had used those two for years in this deck, because (a) this deck doesn't care about property logos and (b) they had great skills and abilities for solving missions. Bursting through an Enemies of the State wall becomes a lot easier when you've got an 8-integrity personnel who boosts your other personnel by 2 integrity.

Second Edition Borg Regional winner Michael Albrecht
Title: Bajorans, first kill them, then defile them
Headquarters: Bajor, Gift of the Prophets, and Cardassia Prime, Hardscrabble World
Deck Size: 65 Cards
Deck Archetype: Midrange Interference
Dilemma Pile Size: 50 Cards
Dilemma Pile Type: Chula Hybrid
Victory Correctly Predicted By: None.

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

I wanted to test the potential of this deck. I thought it would be fun to play. I never thought about winning. In the end I choose this deck, because I had no time to think about another one. Every other deck I considered wouldn't have been legal this Weekend, because they all had cards from the new set in it.

What sorts of decks were you hoping to face while playing your deck? What decks did you hope not to face?
I hoped to face decks, which are fun to play against. I like interference decks; they are not easy to play and pretty creative to build. I hoped not to face any lockout deck; they take the fun out of the game, for the player and the opponent.

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've played Cardassians from time to time; they have lot's of good stop prevention, but lack of good attributes; but with Casualties of the Occupation and some dead Bajorans they run through Missions with 4 or 5 personnel. What I learned is that it's even not necessary to have Bajor with you; in one matchup I haven't played a single Bajoran, I just discarded them for stop prevention and removed them from the game for bonus attributes.

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?
Not really, every card in this deck is and was useful in every game. I was surprised how well the combination of Crell Moset, Notorious Exobiologist, Dukat, Prefect of Bajor, Central Command and Casualties of the Occupation worked. The next time I will play this deck I wouldn't include Comfort Women and Means of Control and maybe Bajor too. I never needed to use them in 5 matchups.

What would you nominate as the MVP card from your deck?
As I said it's not a single card, it's the combination of very massive stop prevention and a massive attribute boost. But if I have to choose one it would be Casualties of the Occupation, because this is the card, I had the idea of playing this deck.

Do you have anything else you'd like to say about your deck?
I think everything is said about the deck. It's really fun to play, like the title says: first kill your own Bajorans (or just discard them) and then defile their remembrance.

My Commentary:
This deck, at first glance, seems similar to Michael Van Breemen's Hall of Fame format Bajoran/Cardassian deck. This deck is also mainly Cardassian, with enough Bajorans to fuel Crell Moset and Casualties of the Occupation, while also retaining the capability of recycling key verbs like The Central Command. On closer inspection, there are some significant differences though!

The most obvious is the inclusion of capture options. Evek and Trap Is Sprung can net some random captives, and Ensnared can pick out some key trouble-making personnel to spend some time in your brig. Once they're there, Labor Camp can score points off of them, and Means of Control can use them to help you solve your missions. In addition, this deck uses the Return to Grace version of Cardassia IV, whose attribute requirement diminishes for each captive you have. Even having just two or three captives makes this a >36 or even >34 cunning mission for a full 40 points. That's a great deal, especially considering how common those skills are on the kind of Cardassians you'd want to use in a deck like this.

There are some different Bajorans showing up here too. Two Worlds Sisko, the one that returns your removed-from-game personnel to your discard pile, makes a showing here, and in a more drawn-out game could be instrumental for refueling your Casualties of the Occupation. Also an option for a longer game is Rescuer Kira, who can retrieve your Ranjen Korals who have been killed off by Surjak after they've outlived their usefulness. Theoretically, this deck could play The Central Command eleven times assuming you can find more ways than Surjak to kill off Ranjen Korals. I know that Michael is considering dropping Bajor from the deck, but I like the flexibility that they add to the deck.

I've experimented some with the "European Style" Chula pile, and I really like it. In North America and Australia, you typically see two styles of Chula pile - an all-in pile that is filled with all the Chula dilemmas, and a very slim pile that uses only the best ones and a select few other attrition dilemmas. European Chula piles take that core of the best Chula dilemmas, and slot them into an otherwise normal attrition pile. It works, I like it - it's not quite as consistent in delivering the power of the combined The Game and The Chandra, but it isn't as hit or miss match-up wise.

Second Edition Washington Regional winner Michael Van Breemen
Title: Triple-HQ Academy Deck... After Graduation!
Headquarters: Caretaker's Array
Deck Size: 53 Cards
Deck Archetype: Speed Solver
Dilemma Pile Size: 83 Cards
Dilemma Pile Type: Everything
Victory Correctly Predicted By: LORE, prylardurden, bosskamiura, BCSWowbagger, Hoss-Drone, Honest, Armus, and The Ninja Scot.

MVB's Commentary:
Why did you choose the deck that you used?

This was the last 2E only achievement that I had a play-only version of at the time (although now there's a play 10 with triple HQ achievement so now that's the only one).

What other decks did you consider using?
Honestly, at the time I couldn't think of any other achievements that I wanted to try for (which is a problem since the Vancouver weekend is this coming up weekend and I don't know what I'm going to try to go for.)

What sorts of decks were you hoping to face while playing your deck? What decks did you hope not to face?
Decks without TCS, a lot of interrupt destruction or kill dilemmas. I didn't want to face all of the above (which, other than the TCS, Amber was running and Justin who I didn't end up playing.)

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 played an Academy version of this deck a while ago which was much smaller (39 card deck.) Since there wasn't as much killing in that version done by my opponent's, I thought that I could get away with that. This version, I added Revised Chakotay (which honestly, I only used once), Security Drills (in order to put bouncy skill dilemmas under,) a few other events (Running a Tight Ship, Surprise Party) and a few other people (Seven of Nine, B'Elanna, Cavit, OT Kirk who was there for Secret Identity bait who did make it into play in two of the three games which is also why it's an all-Fed deck.)

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?
There's nothing situational in the deck per se but not all of it got used (even To Rule in Hell and Relativity got used, either to download Finding Our Way, eaten by Security Drills, card draws with B'elanna, an event for Counterinsurgency Program etc.)

What would you nominate as the MVP card from your deck?
Homeward Bound - Multiple attempts against an attrition-based pile that isn't killing many people is just a good thing all-around for this deck. I also would pick "Space" Chakotay for the Silver since he made the missions even easier to solve, putting more pressure on the opponent and potentially giving me more dilemmas than they would've wanted to. Bronze would be Repair Null Space Catapult/Harry Kim - moving the ship without using Range is very handy.

Why have you been running dilemma piles that are so large recently?
Just to be unpredictable. If it's a smaller pile, people think that I'm running either a kill pile or an Archaeology/Transporters pile which can be sometimes problematic if the opponent plans accordingly like Montgomery Scott, Relic. If it's more of a super-sized kitchen knife, it makes things much more difficult to predict for things like Self-Replicating Roadblock. Plus, sometimes I like to try dilemmas that make my opponent go, "What does that do?"

Do you have anything else you'd like to say about your deck?
The decklist is wrong (there's only three Tacking's, I wanted the prettier art version).

My Commentary:
Do not let the title (or the icons beside his name in the tournament listing) fool you: this is a Voyager deck! There's a Relativity (but no Prevent Historical Disruption!) and a copy of To Rule in Hell (but no Ceti Alpha V!), but that's just to make the deck qualify for the triple headquarters achievement. I actually got my hopes up, especially after seeing Stefan Slaby take second place in a local event with a deck that played both Voyager and Khan personnel.

Anyways, yes, this is a Voyager deck. The first thing I go to are the missions: all space! It's actually a bit of a relief to see that again; every time a deck gets hit by errata, I worry it will disappear completely. I mean, I did have to review 5SV over and over and over again a couple years ago, so I do appreciate being able to take a break from it.

The next thing I look at, once I see the five space missions, is the Chakotay choice. Each Chakotay has its zealots; some players swear you can't win without the twin decipher-era Chakotays (Bridge Between Two Crews and Revised, let us not speak of First Officer). There are others who swear by Steadfast Commander, the Chakotay that came out with Lower Decks - the attribute requirement reduction really adds up as the game progresses. Michael has opted to split the difference and run Steadfast with Revised, which is a third, quite reasonable, plan.

That Relativity could really get in the way of those Christenings, though. Christening is great in a Voyager deck that is geared for speed, since it is such an advantage to have Voyager in your opening hand. If you draw up Voyager or a Christening, you don't need to waste time drawing and playing events on your first turn, you can just start dumping people as fast as possible. But if there's a Relativity with that Christening in your opening hand... well, at three cost, you won't be able to play Voyager that turn. Achievements though!


Discuss this article in this thread.

Back to Archive index