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Aerakade

A few noob questions.

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I just picked up the game yesterday and was rather impressed. I did however find one particulair item troubling. Mind you I only have the core set, and my playing wasl imited to 1 on 1.

First question:

One of the core set targaryen plot cards allows you to pick an opponent and then that opponent chooses a character to be killed. We played with the cards straight out of the pre-wrapped decks and I would not choose this card again. Is there any reason to use it (mind you in a 1 v 1 game) other than that it's 5 gold?

 

Second question:

I enjoyed hte game and would like to expand my deck by purchasing more of the addtions/chapters. Reading the descriptions is not terribly helpful. (40 cards bla bla bla) but are certain additions built better for certain situations/play types? Is there anyway to really anything specifically I ought to know about one versus the other? I know with the (upcoming?)  Kings of the Sea is going to be specifically Grejoy but what of the other additions?

Thanks a lot!

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Aerakade said:

First question:

One of the core set targaryen plot cards allows you to pick an opponent and then that opponent chooses a character to be killed. We played with the cards straight out of the pre-wrapped decks and I would not choose this card again. Is there any reason to use it (mind you in a 1 v 1 game) other than that it's 5 gold?

No. In a 1-on-1 game (called a "Joust" by the game's designers) that is a horrible plot because it pretty much guarantees that your best character will die in order to get that 5 gold. Usually not worth it, unless you have no characters on the table. That particular plot is only really good in a multiplayer game (called a "Melee" around here), where you can make a deal with Opponent #1 to kill Opponent #2's best character when you play the plot. Of course, Opponent #1 could still stab you in the back....

 

Aerakade said:

Second question:

I enjoyed hte game and would like to expand my deck by purchasing more of the addtions/chapters. Reading the descriptions is not terribly helpful. (40 cards bla bla bla) but are certain additions built better for certain situations/play types? Is there anyway to really anything specifically I ought to know about one versus the other? I know with the (upcoming?)  Kings of the Sea is going to be specifically Grejoy but what of the other additions?

First, you need to make a distinction between an "expansion" and a "chapter pack." The Kings of the Sea is an "expansion." It will, more or less, be a pre-made deck for Greyjoy like the 4 you got (for Stark, Lannister, Baratheon and Targaryen) in the Core Set, plus some extra cards for mixing and matching. The point of the expansion, though, is a pre-made deck that could be played straight out of the pre-wrapped decks against the other pre-wrapped decks. 

The Chapter Packs (there are 12 of them with a 13th due out next week) are just packs of 40 cards. More to the point, there are only 20 individual cards in a Chapter Pack, but you get 3 copies of 10 of them and 1 copy of each of the other 10. These are not pre-made decks and cannot be played "pre-wrapped." The point of a Chapter Pack is extra cards to work into the pre-made decks (substituting, adding or exchanging cards) so that the decks are always changing and evolving. Or, between the Core Set cards and Chapter Packs, you can build an entire deck from scratch. Each individual Chapter Pack usually has a theme and all 20 cards in it relate to the theme one way or another and in varying degrees, but they do not concentrate on specific Houses, card types, or anything like that. So while each Chapter Pack with the same name is exactly the same, there is no telling what is going to be in it until you open the first one. Or check the boards here - someone usually spoils all of the cards in a pack within hours of opening it. (FFG does not have a master spoiler list, though.)

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Welcome to the game.

I started playing last fall and found that Targaryen plot completely baffling.  The experienced players here helped me to figure out that it can be useful in multi-player, which you seem to have figured out on your own, but no one ever even tried to defend it in a 1 vs. 1 match.  Until I got more plot cards, I used a house rule to treat that card as if it had blank text.

 

As for your question about expansions:  Personally, I think you'll find more bang for your buck if you buy a second copy of the core set.  This will allow you to build customized decks where you run duplicates of strategically important characters, which is the cheapest way to get both predictability and saves.  It will also greatly improve the pool of available plots for each deck.  This made a world of difference in my games.

As for the expansions, all of them (except for the upcoming "Kings of the Sea") have a mix of cards for each House.

 

So what should you buy next (after a second Core Set, if you take my advice)?  In my mind, the decision is quite different depending on whether you're supplying all the cards for your play group, or whether you're joining an existing play group.

If you're supplying all the cards:  You'll want to think in terms of specific mechanics, and whether you want to introduce them to your play group.  Sometimes, if you decide to introduce a specific mechanic, you may want to buy several chapter packs at once:  For example, the "Summer/Winter" mechanic is spread throughout the first four chapter packs in the "Time of Ravens" expansion.  I have heard some players say that this mechanic didn't really become compelling until the third or fourth chapter pack, so if you want to introduce it to your group, you may want to buy all four chapters at once, sometime down the road.

If you're joing an existing group:  Play for a while with a couple of core sets or some borrowed cards, to find out if you have a preferred House or play style.  If you find that you do, there are a lot of people here in the forums who can give you advice about specific chapter packs to help a certain House.

 

Finally, if you haven't seen it already, you can find good information at the following web site:  www.tzumainn.com/agot/cards/.  It's not completely up to date, but it has a lot of information on the first 10 chapter packs of the modern era.

 

EDIT: Bah! Beat to the punch by ktom.  I type too slow...

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