There was a thread on Boardgamegeek recently about whether Silver Twilight could run well as a mono deck or not. I thought they could, though it may not be high level competitive - and when the new pack came out with what looked like some more good cards for them I decided to try building a deck and see how things went.
I've never tried a mono-ST deck before, and found myself having to reach beyond the cards I'm most accustomed to - so quickly it turned into an experiment to throw in a bunch of new stuff and see what turned out useful and what didn't - with the idea that I'll probably go through several rounds of changes.
Anyway, here's the initial version:
3xInitiate of Huang Hun
3xProtector of Secrets
3xKnight of the Eclipse
3xLord Jeffrey Farrington
2xMaster of the Myths
2xNigel St. James
2xSarah Van Shaw
2xSilver Twilight Enforcer
3xFriendly to the Order
3xSteal the Soul
3xYou Know too Much
3xRitual of Exclusion
Sunday night I met up with a friend and we managed to get in something like 8-9 games of this deck vs. a mono-Agency deck. He's a relatively new player, but I think we managed to get at least some useful first impressions.
Against this particular deck, I was expecting Ritual of Exclusion to be important. I would say it was helpful, but not critical. Bouncing and an occasional Steal the Soul or Friendly to the Order helped a lot for us to survive combat - also I should say that he has a tendency to over-commit on his turn so we got away with undefended stories more often than we should have and no defenders means no defenders shooting at us either. Anyway, 3x was clearly too many copies - 2x would be plenty.
The Doorway wasn't used much either, I'll probably strip those out. The Oubliettes on the other hand were very useful as he had several cheap 1-skill characters out at most times and they usually had Combat icons. Keeping those out of stories was golden so at LEAST one more of these cards.
While Steal the Soul was as useful as always, I'm less happy with Friendly to the Order because it requires the bounce to set it up. I may look into replacing some or all of these with Secret Handshake, Pass Grip of a Master, or something…
Hidden Agenda is fun, I didn't always get to play it and sometimes I was going to win anyway, but it's cool so it stays in for now.
The main thing though was to get better impressions of some of the characters. Now, I had put in the T'tka Halot to test the characters that get bonus stuff from having a Tome in play. Some of them worked well, others a bit less so, and some characters were just to try whether there was a Tome or not. So, let's go through them with some impressions:
2xLodge Neophyte - Useful as a cheap guy who can play on both turns, he's great early against undefended stories. No complaints.
3xInitiate of Huang Hun - OK, everybody knows this guy. He's useful, but I think 3x is more than I really want. The problem with Huang Hun is that you don't build up any presence and if your opponent has a few 1-cost guys out he's not so good.
2xMeticulous Scribe - Did better than I expected, I will promote him to 3x. And not from his Tome effect, just from being a good story guy with Arcane/Investigation. If someone can bodyguard or set up unopposed, he's very cost effective for what he does.
3xProtector of Secrets - Staple character as far as I'm concerned, although many times I didn't get to use his come into play ability. For instance, turn 1 and there are no enemy characters, stuff like that.
2xChauncey Swann - The first real "experimental" guy in the deck. Honestly I didn't end up using him much and I never used his Response. Needs more testing - and maybe a couple more support cards?
2xDirk Sharpe - Only costs 2 to put into play, somehow he didn't see to pay off as much as I'd like in surprise kills and being Unique is a pain because one he came out any extra copy was dead in my hand. I could be convinced to lose him if something better comes along, but he was OK.
3xKnight of the Eclipse - A solid performer. Get a book out and suddenly nothing can hurt him. Good icon spread and skill too, not exciting but he's a rock and a great story defender.
3xLord Jeffrey Farrington - Everyone knows Jeffrey is hot stuff, so enough said there.
2xMaster of the Myths - A lot like Huang Hun, always popping in to mess with stuff and has the same drawback - if you're using him too much you're not building up presence. Still, a very handy tool to have in your box.
2xNigel St. James - Didn't like him. Turning characters into resources prevents them being brought back with Ritual of Exclusion and quite honestly Silver Twilight doesn't have a lot of earthshaking BIG cost cards. If he was in a mythos faction I'm sure he'd be more popular to pave the way for Ancient Ones and stuff. Then again, maybe this isn't the best deck. Someday when Silver Twilight has a lot more good high-cost cards I'll revisit him in a deck with a lot of cheap 1-cost guys.
2xSarah Van Shaw - She worked out well because she grants icons to everyone as opposed to the other characters who only gain icons themselves. Now even my cheap guys or scholars get some combat meat they can really use. Her +skill effect isn't too hard to achieve either. Having her icon grant work off a Tome *or* a Ritual makes her especially easy to get working - Recommended. I'm planning to look into another deck sometime with more Rituals and Magical Theorist see how that goes.
2xSilver Twilight Enforcer - This guy is a monster but with all the subtlety of being run over by a dump truck. He's approximately that easy to see coming too. But, not a bad tool for those just-in-case situations and you can always use him with tools that can slip a surprise character into play. So no, you usually WON'T get to kill several dudes with him. But you DO make opposing him so expensive nobody will dream of it and he can tag-team with a Meticulous Scholar or whatever to grab stories very nicely. Try Nathan Wick's power to summon him as a defender if you really want to mess stuff up :)
2xNathan Wick - He's not a bad guy really, but you need cards to power him. Still, dropping Lord Jeffrey to clear an annoying guy, use him at a story, and then have him go back to hand to do it again next turn? Spiffy! Cost 4 is a little up there but not so bad. Just work on saving some cards - winning Chaos Unleashed is a good way to power him that worked out for me sometimes. He definitely requires the right kind of buddies to maximize his ability.
Anyway, for the first round of changes I'm going to be trimming a few cards that weren't working out for me and bumping up a couple that were. I felt I was a little too thin on cheap characters, and I'm hoping there will be some spare room to add the next set of experimental cards. I'm thinking of trying:
The Silver Lance - some targeted character removal would really hit the spot - PLUS it powers up my stuff that keys off return to hand without consuming a domain to do it.
Eon Chart - This looks fairly flexible, but I need this plus some more cheap guys to make it viable.
Knight of the Outer Void - He may overlap too much with other ideas but well worth learning to use him well
Lodge Librarian - Swap unwanted cards for better ones? I'll give that a try.
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I like the look of your mono-ST deck. I may have to give something like it a try this weekend. My wife hates Initiates as it is, and several other of the new ST cards look like a lot of fun. I'd be curious to see how it tested against something even more destruction heavy, or sacrificial.
Ritual of Exclusion should be useful against character destruction, but if they can also destroy supports easily don't let it cook too long before use!
If they take out the Rituals too easily, switch to Nigel and look for some more high cost cards that you can power with your big domains. High Wizard is a possibility, he's more or less an extra Jeffrey that isn't unique and you'll be able to more easily afford the Hidden Agendas. If their deck has lots of Villainous (too hard to rely on this) then Clifton Rosenberg might be handy but it's just too situational I think. Mayor Atkinson maybe, he more or less has a targeted (but skill limited) Huang Hun in his pocket.
OK, I've made some changes. I put in Silver Lance and Knight of the Outer Void and all the +/-1 card changes spoken about above. With Knight of the Outer Void causing more characters to return to hand I opted to try High Wizard for now instead of Lodge Librarian since he has a come into play effect. Also, there wasn't room for Eon Chart so that may have to wait for the next round or maybe go above 50 cards.
Not sure when I will get the chance to try it, we're going out of town day after tomorrow so not until I get back I'm sure.
I'm looking for ways to rely less on Initiate and/or Master of the Myths (I'm currently including 2 of each) - if you've got some ideas on that front I'm interested in hearing them.
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