I tried something new the other day, just for fun.
The idea is to use the 4 copies of Guardian of the Peace to protect all these Rebel characters. Splashing Jedi gives me some good defense with Lightsaber Deflect and C-3PO. Also, Double Strike has been useful on occasion. Leia is in there for obvious reasons, but in all my games I've never been able to get her to use her ability. I'm thinking she's just not my style. I've played half a dozen games and only won once. In most games, I feel starved for blast damage.
The one game I won was probably one of the best games draw-wise that I could hope for. I was facing an Imperial trooper deck led by the new Darth Vader (Vader's Command, Imperial Command, The Ultimate Power, Death and Despayre, and Take Them Prisoner). I started with Red 5 and was able to deal 4 damage to an objective on my first turn. Then I just tried to build up my forces without attacking much. I'd push my opponent here or there to see if they would take the bait. If they defended a bunch, I could attack a different objective. If they left it undefended, I got 1 blast damage. Usually they defended with one unit only so I just ended my turn after that. With 4 or 5 left on the dial, my opponent finally started to attack with Vader and his many units (plus two orbital bombardments). I lost Secret of Yavin 4, but Decoy negated the loss. Then I drew a second Mission Briefing. Aided by A-wing attacks on my turn and the Mission Briefing draw, I was able to win the edge on defense and soundly shut down his attempts to take another objective. I used Heat of Battle to deal the third damage to Vader (the other two dealt by Heavy Blaster Emplacement), attacked with my Battlefield Engineer to kill Vader, Lightsaber Deflected to defend my second attacker, Rebel Trooper, from his Death Star Trooper and killed his second Death Star Trooper in the process, then finished off the first Death Star Trooper. My objective took only 2 damage and survived with one point left. With only three left on the dial, I drew two more units with blast damage and was able to take the last objective with virtually no opposition thanks to blaster emplacements.
I really wish I could paint a better picture than what I did above, but it was intense. Here are some thoughts on this deck.
- Card draw is important so you can win edge battles. You have to play units on your turn, so Mission Briefing, A-wings, and You're My Only Hope are essential to get your hand back up to a good size for defense, especially against Imperials.
- You need to put the pressure on your opponent so they're not comfortable sitting back and waiting for you to attack. If they attack you, you have less defenders to wade through on your turn. I did this with Heavy Blaster Emplacement. Tactics icons are also excellent for this. Mon Mothma's role was to attack objectives with no damage on them. If the opponent let her through, she'd place a tactics icon on Vader or someone. If he defended, he had to play at least one card because of her edge (1), even if I didn't play any cards. (Using Double Strike on her was an awesome way to lock down my opponent.)
- This deck falls flat on its face against Sith. The basic reason is that they don't have enough blast damage on average to make attacking me tempting. They also have enough damage capacity with Royal Guards and others that Heavy Blaster Emplacements aren't as intimidating to them.
- Targeted Strike destroys this deck. You have to try to build up your forces and keep them safe. Targeted Strike makes it so you might as well try to attack since your units will be destroyed next turn anyway. But then, maybe if you had enough Guardian's out, you'd be better off defending . . .
- Limited blast damage. There are only 12 blast damage icons in this deck. 6 are edge-enabled Rebel blast damage, 6 come from Red 5. That makes it really hard to deal the damage you need, especially since Red 5 is such a huge target and can't be protected by Guardian of the Peace.
- Interestingly, the whole point is to protect your blast damage-dealing characters with your protect characters, and yet using protect hardly came up.
So there's a part of me that wants to keep trying this deck to see if I can get better with it, but another part feels it's a lost cause. Still, my recent win has given me renewed hope that there's something good here. It may be worth my fooling around with more to improve my tactical decisions since it's kind of a handicapped deck.