|A Game of Thrones LCG | Published 30 December 2010|
A boulder shifted to their left, and stood, and became a man. Massive and slow and strong he seemed, dressed all in skins, with a club in his right hand and an axe in his left. He smashed them together as he lumbered closer.
- A Song of Ice and Fire, Volume I: A Game of Thrones
Hello and Welcome Back, Loyal A Game of Thrones Fans!
This week we resume our previews of the upcoming sixth and final Chapter Pack of the Brotherhood Without Banners cycle, The Dreadfort Betrayal. While The Dreadfort Betrayal focuses on the on-again, off-again bannermen of House Stark, House Bolton, we thought we would take this opportunity to look at another of the traits that has been running through Brotherhood Without Banners, Clansman.
One of the overarching themes of Brotherhood Without Banners is the idea of factions within factions, offering new and sometimes counterintuitive approaches to your favorite Houses. In some cases, such as in House Bolton, the trait does not wander too far from the core strengths of the given House. In the case of the Clansman trait, building a deck around it requires playing, in many ways, the opposite of House Lannister's strong points. House Lannister out-draws almost everyone, Clansmen generally work when you have fewer cards in hand; House Lannister rules the intrigue challenge, Clansmen have almost no intrigue icons. Where Clansmen and "mainstream" House Lannister intersect in terms of strength is in their dedication to kneeling, although on opposite sides of the divide.
Given cards like Enemy Informer, Lannisport Brothel, and Castellan of the Rock*, House Lannister's enemies have plenty to fear in terms of getting knelt and kept out of challenges or prevented from using most character abilities. Kneeling is also strong among the Clansmen, although to different effect. In the case of Clansmen, kneeling yourself out can be a solid strategy. Tyrion's Enforcers can participate in military challenges while knelt, and Timmett Son of Timmett protects your knelt Clansmen from being killed**.
The number of Clansmen cards that trigger off of kneeling is admittedly few, however, in combo with Shagga, Son of Dolf, there are now more opportunities for mayhem with kneeling Clansmen. With Shagga in play, you commit everything to your challenges and still have defenders when your opponent swings at you. Granted, they can only defend against military challenges, but as Clansmen decks thrive when you have fewer cards in hand, not defending the intrigue challenge should be a benefit. Kneeling out completely may leave you open against power challenges, but Lannister's infamy*** might help with that, keeping power off of your House card and out of the reach of power claims. Infamous characters are usually about as fragile as renowned characters, but with Timett Son of Timett in play, kneeling out can protect your Clansmen from being killed and losing the power stored on them.
So there you have it. We hope you've found this week's card spoiler interesting with plenty to discuss here in the comments and in the A Game of Thrones forums. Until next time!
*Core Set, L48 and L56, and Battle of Ruby Ford, F93, respectively.
** Tyrion's Enforcers and Timmett Son of Timmett can be found in Mountains of the Moon.
*** Devious Intentions (Battle of Ruby Ford, F94) and Head of a Dwarf (Refugees of War, F82)
Based on George R.R. Martin's bestselling fantasy epic A Song of Ice and Fire, A Game of Thrones: The Card Game, playable by 2-4 players, brings the beloved heroes, villains, locations, and events of the world of Westeros to life through innovative game mechanics and the highly strategic game play. The Living Card Game format allows players to customize their gaming experience with monthly Chapter Pack expansions to the core game.
plot seems very cool - not only for lanni clansmen but as nice way protect vs. a lot of those killer army decks. i agree about the art being amazing!
@ ruvion: easy infamy = devious intentions/head of a dwarf.
Now if only there was a way to get your knelt Clansmen some easy Infamy.
Great plot with truly amazing art!