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NOOB Question: Why not a "pure" deck?


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#1 Asylum

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Posted 06 January 2012 - 08:11 PM

 Seems to me a pure deck would be just as reliable as a mixed deck. Pure decks have the advantage of only needing one kind of resource, right (I'm such a noob that I even say that without total confidence)? Also, you can focus on the strengths of that faction to the letter and avoid unreliable mixes and matches. Are pure decks not viable at all? I was thinking about designing a pure Shub deck and a pure Hastur deck. I have the core, both expansions, and 6 asylum packs (I jumped in headfirst). I've yet to play a game with anything but the core deck though.

Just curious about everyone's thoughts on this. Thank you!



#2 TheProfessor

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Posted 07 January 2012 - 02:48 AM

 Personally, I almost always play single faction decks.  I think they are more thematic and stylistic.

The recommendation on combing two factions from the core set rules is just to make sure the players have enough cards to build a deck with what comes in the core set.

By all means, go for it - build mono-faction decks and have fun with them!



#3 dboeren

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Posted 07 January 2012 - 03:32 AM

Both mono-faction and two-faction decks can work fine.

Here are the points for a two-faction deck though:

1.  Twice as many cards to draw on gives you more options

2.  You can pick your second faction to shore up any weaknesses of your first one, if you want

3.  Two factions is still small enough that resources are not a problem

4.  Potential access to effects or combos that you can't do purely within one faction

 

Most of the same arguments would apply to more factions, but the "more access" ones get diminishing returns and resourcing gets more problematic, so in practice it doesn't work out so well with more than 2.  This doesn't really apply as much to Neutral cards or cards that can be played for free of course, those can be sprinkled into a 1-2 faction deck without causing problems.

I think it's probably true that some factions have an easier time making a *competitive* mono-faction deck, but as long as you're not trying to play at the highest levels you're fine.  I'm quite fond of a mono-Syndicate deck I have and it seems to do well against most opposing decks.  I've got a mono-Cthulhu Deep Ones deck that works very well too.  I don't think either one uses any Neutrals even.

I've had some trouble hitting upon a mono-Hastur deck (and didn't want to "cheat" and copy someone else's).  The main issue I've had there is there's too many things that are immune to Terror/Insanity.  I've had more success after shifting the deck towards more "take control" effects.  Currently it's a mixed Hastur/Yog deck, but at some point I may try to bring it back to mono.  Actually, this is a good example of how the bigger card pool helps.  Among other things, there's a Cultist subtheme in the deck and I have cards that want Cultist characters to be around like Tattoo Parlor and Harbinger of Insanity.  So, I want a good percentage of my characters to have that trait.  It was a lot easier to satisfy that requirement while also getting the other icons/traits/abilities I want with two factions to choose from.  If I'd been mono-Hastur I'd probably have had to make more compromises.

I'm thinking of making a mono-Shub deck next.  I think in general I usually start a deck by picking just one faction and then a second faction might be added later if things aren't fitting together quite as I'd like and I need access to something else.  "Man, I'm running out of good Cultists and I'm having trouble against stuff that can't go Insane.  Who can help with that?  Hey, Yog has a fair number of Cultists and Sacrifice effects, let's see if that works."



#4 Yipe

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Posted 07 January 2012 - 07:58 AM

I have 10 decks at the moment, and the 7 of them are mono-faction.  They all seem to do well and are fun to play (save my pure Mi-Go deck which is currently struggling against my other Mythos decks).  In fact, my strongest deck is a mono-faction Cthulhu deck (it seems Cthulhu has access to a wide range of powerful cards), but I've got a solid Shub and Yog deck as well.

Most of my gaming buddies don't own CoC (or at least didn't have any of their own cards until recently), so it was up to me to supply all the decks.  I found designing mono-faction decks to be faster (fewer cards for me to analyze) and more straightforward in terms of how they work, making them ideal for introducing beginners.

I agree with TheProfessor that mono-faction decks can be quite thematic.  I'm running an all Sebek and Shoggoth Cthulhu deck, an all Serpents and Deep Ones Cthulhu deck, a Dark Young and "Hot Cultist Chick" Shub deck, and a 100% Mi-Go deck.

On the other hand, I've found my dual faction decks tend to have the most interesting and sneaky combos.  They aren't as "cinematic" as a mono-deck - being a Mythos mish-mash - but they can be exciting to play.  My personal favorite is my "Sacrifice All Yer Cultists" Hastur/Cthulhu deck.  Capitalizing on the cultist sub-trait would be difficult if I relied on only one faction, and besides, this way I can feed my cultists to both Harbinger of Insanity and Carl Stanford.

Also, I haven't found resourcing to be a problem in my dual faction decks (Loyal cards are few and far between, and can be easily avoided or planned around).  The only problem I've encountered is in the design process.  It takes me an exponentially longer time to sort through and build a dual faction deck compared to one that draws from only a single faction, and as my friends are always wanting to try out new combos, how much time it takes to build a deck from scratch is an important factor (at least for me).



#5 Asylum

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Posted 07 January 2012 - 01:44 PM

 Thanks for the insight, everyone! I was looking at making a mono Shub deck. Is there a link to any deck like this anyone has already made?



#6 Yipe

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Posted 07 January 2012 - 05:50 PM

I found a few mono-Shub decks at cardgame database. I can't attest to their effectiveness, but at least they're a place to start. Here are the links:

www.cardgamedb.com/forums/index.php?/topic/137-coc-deck-shub-niggurush/

www.cardgamedb.com/forums/index.php?/topic/88-coc-deck-mono-shub-ghouls-at-night/

www.cardgamedb.com/forums/index.php?/topic/46-coc-deck-mi-go-a-go-go/



#7 Shangfu

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Posted 08 January 2012 - 01:38 AM

Yipe said:

On the other hand, I've found my dual faction decks tend to have the most interesting and sneaky combos.  They aren't as "cinematic" as a mono-deck - being a Mythos mish-mash - but they can be exciting to play.  My personal favorite is my "Sacrifice All Yer Cultists" Hastur/Cthulhu deck.  Capitalizing on the cultist sub-trait would be difficult if I relied on only one faction, and besides, this way I can feed my cultists to both Harbinger of Insanity and Carl Stanford.

This. If you want more straightforward strategies and thematic decks, go for mono-colour. If you want more complex strategies and combos, go for multi-faction. Personally i started with mono-colour decks, one for each faction, with minimal amount of neutrals and later on i moved to 2 and even 3 coloured decks and more comboish strategies. Progressing like this within the game seemed like a good way to learn the basics and "initiate" myself into the game. Therefore i really recommend mono-colour decks for start, possibly even one for each faction to learn the basics of the factions well. :)



#8 TheProfessor

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Posted 08 January 2012 - 02:02 AM

 If you check out the most recent World Championships report (http://www.fantasyfl...s.asp?eidn=2595) you'll see that 3 of the top 4 were mono-faction, and 1 was dual faction.



#9 Yipe

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Posted 08 January 2012 - 10:28 AM

Asylum said:

 

 Thanks for the insight, everyone! I was looking at making a mono Shub deck. Is there a link to any deck like this anyone has already made?

 

 

Asylum,

I would put up my Shub and Mi-Go decks as examples for you, but as our group plays with both CCG and LCG cards, I don't think they would be much help. Still, after reading dboeren's post in your other thread about Dark Young being his favorite Shub subtype, I got to thinkin'...

I like Mi-Go, and I like Dark Young. They're two great flavors that, well, you know.  So what about something that tastes like this?

CHARACTERS: 34
x2 •Shub-Niggurath, Dark Mistress of the Woods
x2 •Y'Golonac
x3 Hungry Dark Young
x3 The Mother's Hand
x3 Ancient Guardian
x3 Mi-Go Caretaker
x3 Ageless Mi-Go
x3 Mi-Go Scout
x3 Mi-Go Surgeon
x3 Priestess of Bubastis
x3 Grasping Chthonian
x3 Telepathic Chthonian


EVENTS: 6
x3 Under the Porch
x3 Burrowing Beneath

SUPPORT: 10
x3 Mi-Go Skull
x3 Mi-Go Scalpel
x2 Altar of the Blessed
x2 Summoning Circle

Total 50

The card ratio in this deck goes against my general design philosophy, but with Shub I find it's fun to run a boat-load of characters. Even if they die like flies, there's always more where that came from.

The deck's general premise is to make either Shub-Niggurath or Y'Golonac a Mi-Go character with tons of skill, arcane, and of course investigation (thanks to the Mi-Go Skull, Mi-Go Scout, and Mi-Go Scalpel). Then, as they're invulnerable, send them in to a story and slowly grind away to success.

You've got your Ageless Mi-Go to protect against lots of wounding, and if you're facing an opponent that forces you to sacrifice a bunch of characters just make sure they're Dark Young and then bring them back as fodder for the next turn with Shub. Use the Grasping Chthonian + Telepathic Chthonian + Under the Porch to nullify your opponent's support cards, and do some sacrificing of your own.

Finally, bring out the Mi-Go Surgeons and exhaust your Summoning Circle to grab whatever character you need (namely your Ancient Ones).

P.S. Instead of the Summoning Circle (if you feel having it and Under the Porch to be repetitive), you could go with either x2 Open Grave, Specimen Room, or Mi-Go Laboratory.



#10 dboeren

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Posted 08 January 2012 - 11:10 AM

Looks pretty good to me.  You've got most of the key Dark Young that I would recommend, some discounting, and what looks like good support and events.  I'm not immediately sure about Shub being in there.  You won't be getting as much mileage out of her ability to bring forth a ton of Dark Young as a more dedicated Dark Young deck would.  However, you've got a plan for her and there isn't any other cheaper AO besides Y'Golonac who you've already got.

Under the Porch is  a great card for her though, if you end up with a lot of dead Dark Young you can bring her out just long enough to put them all back into play again.

The next step I think is to break it down as to which cards come in which packs.  Then, if there are any cards that are the only card in that pack, see if you can maybe replace them with a card that comes from the same pack as something else so you can get your total costs down.

After flipping through my cards, now I'm sort of tempted to make a deck themed around Ghoulish Worshipper, Even Here She Dwells, and a bunch of Monsters.  There's really all sorts of themes, not just the most obvious ones.  I'm also looking forward to someday when we get enough Chthonians to make a deck centered around them eventually.  The first good step in that direction would be to errata the Displaced Cthonian into Displaced Chthonian as I suspect it was originally supposed to be...  Then 2-3 more Chthonians in the next cycle and we're on our way ;)



#11 Yipe

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Posted 08 January 2012 - 11:27 AM

dboeren said:

 

Looks pretty good to me.  You've got most of the key Dark Young that I would recommend, some discounting, and what looks like good support and events.  I'm not immediately sure about Shub being in there.  You won't be getting as much mileage out of her ability to bring forth a ton of Dark Young as a more dedicated Dark Young deck would.  However, you've got a plan for her and there isn't any other cheaper AO besides Y'Golonac who you've already got.

Under the Porch is  a great card for her though, if you end up with a lot of dead Dark Young you can bring her out just long enough to put them all back into play again.

 

 

True, my "Peanut Butter n' Mi-Go" deck only has 9 Dark Young so perhaps Shub isn't the best fit.  I just thought it would be amusing to turn her into a Mi-Go and see how high you could increase her base skill of 8.

It would be easy to drop Shub, as well as both Summoning Circles, and include 1 more copy of Y'Golonac, as well as x3 Shocking Transformation to quickly get out your Ancient Guardian or Telepathic Chthonian (making it easier to combo with either Grasping Chthonian or Burrowing Underneath).  This would give you a few more Events to play which I find increases both the deck's flexibility and overall enjoyment of the game.  If I pulled Shub, I might also drop the x3 Priestess of Bubastis for a 2-cost Dark Young or take Forest Sister.

At this point I agree it's mostly about dealing with the cards you own.  Asylum didn't list the 7 APs he purchased along with his Core Set, Secrets of Arkham and Order of the Silver Twilight, so I was just throwing out random options.

My recommendation, Asylum?  If you like Shub, think about picking up at least 1 more Core Set (and preferably 2).  Then you would have x3 copies of some tried-and-true Shub cards that will be the foundation of just about any Shub deck you put together.

And let us know how it goes.  I don't get to play nearly enough, so it's always fun to hear about other peoples' decks and experiences with the game.



#12 dboeren

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Posted 08 January 2012 - 01:34 PM

Good point, if you can tell us which packs you own already, and also any particular themes you're interested in, that would help narrow things down and let us work with what you've got and hopefully not have to add too much extra.



#13 jhaelen

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Posted 08 January 2012 - 09:57 PM

TheProfessor said:

 If you check out the most recent World Championships report (http://www.fantasyfl...s.asp?eidn=2595) you'll see that 3 of the top 4 were mono-faction, and 1 was dual faction.

Yeah, however, imho, the decks are mostly not particularly good. The only one that ever gave my four-faction deck any trouble was the one that ended up second place, mostly due to featuring anti-multi-faction cards like Communal Shower.

At the European Championship which featured 26 players two of the top four decks were three-faction decks and the other two two-faction decks. In total there were two four-faction decks, nine three-faction decks, 13 two-faction decks, and two mono-faction decks.

The thing is: every faction has its strengths and weaknesses and it's very difficult to cover all of your weaknesses with a single faction. At the moment I would only consider Cthulhu to be able to pull it off and stay competitive at an international tournament level.



#14 Asylum

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Posted 10 January 2012 - 12:11 AM

 I have one core set, Silver Twilight, Secrets of Arkham, Ancient Horros, Terror of the Tides, Path to Y'ha-Nthlei, Conspiracies of Chaos, That Which Consumes, Spawn of the Sleeper, In The Dread of Night...

I wish I didn't do any Dreamlands though because I really need all packs to make the best of the day/night mechanic.

I'm interested in a Dark Young deck though.



#15 Yipe

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Posted 10 January 2012 - 04:02 AM

Asylum said:

I wish I didn't do any Dreamlands though because I really need all packs to make the best of the day/night mechanic.

 

You will want to stay away from the Dreamlands cycle until they've been reprinted in the new format (3 copies of each card with 60 cards total).  Right now they only have 40 cards per pack, with 1 copy of 10 cards and 3 copies of the other 10 cards.



#16 dboeren

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Posted 10 January 2012 - 04:38 AM

That too.  I think a lot of us are waiting for them to reprint Dreamlands in the new format so we can finally pick those up.  Hopefully it will be announced soon.



#17 Magnus Arcanis

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Posted 10 January 2012 - 10:37 AM

"pure" aka "mono" decks are fine. Most will do extremely well in tournament play. In fact every month mono-faction decks becomes even more viable. The current trend seems to be that the smaller the collection the more advantageous it is to include other factions when building a competitive deck.

I still think, that unless you have a good reason, going beyond two factions in a deck will give you resourcing problems (unless you're cheating those other factions' cards into play of course).

In fact, to those just getting into the game I recommend that they go as much mono as possible. Its the way the game was meant to be played and thats where most people who play this as a board game will enjoy that structure. However, after you get "bored" and you (or your group) becomes more adept with the game you'll have more fun discovering all of the fun strategies by combining factions.

Though of course, not everyone will find this as much as fun as the guy who "found the good one." ;) hehe

But hey, ultimately... everything is pretty open and viable at this point. The difference between a tier 1 deck and a tier 1.5 deck right now is whether or not it has a way to defend itself against the Large Man + An Offer You Can't Refuse turn 1 win combo.

 



#18 B_P

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Posted 30 January 2012 - 12:56 AM

There are some problems with mono decks.

All factions are just not viable in mono decks. Miska makes you draw, but it's still not interesting to draw others miskatonic squishy characters.Same problem with shub and board control. You play monsters/dark youngs/ Migo. Ok. and, then what?

So, yes it is more and more possible to win a casual game with mono faction decks but, for me, not in competitive events.

The second problem with mono decks is their high predictive deckbuild. Cthulhu is not a game with a ton of good and efficient cards. So, when you play a mono deck, your opponent can guess with ease what cards you will play.

 



#19 MinionOfProvidence

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Posted 27 February 2012 - 09:08 AM

I love single faction decks and i use them all the time. Another advantage of a two faction deck is that each faction has a style it leans more towards so they lack in certain things. Having another deck helps to even things out a bit, this being said you can easily compensate by making your deck filled with twice the devious cards your faction has as oppossed to if you had two factions. Try to pick a theme wehn creating a deck that helps a lot.






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