The Art of War
Previewing Four House Intro Decks for A Game of Thrones: The Card Game
“Never forget what you are, for surely the world will not. Make it your strength. Then it can never be your weakness. Armor yourself in it, and it will never be used to hurt you.”
–Tyrion Lannister, A Game of Thrones
Westeros is a land that has fallen to chaos and war. The Great Houses of the realm vie for power, using their military might, underhanded plotting, and political influence to win the Iron Throne, while newly awakened threats born of magic rise in the East and the North. A Game of Thrones: The Card Game is a competitive Living Card Game® of politics, battles, intrigues, and betrayal set in the world of George R.R. Martin’s A Song of Ice and Fire series. And if you've been waiting for the chance to join the fight, these eight upcoming House Intro Decks are the perfect way to try out the game!
Each carefully constructed House Intro Deck is designed to introduce you to the dynamic play of A Game of Thrones: The Card Game with a complete deck that you can play right out of the box, against other House Intro Decks or custom decks designed by other players. Then, once you have mastered the mechanics of your chosen House, you can upgrade your deck with deluxe expansions and Chapter Packs.
Even hardened veterans of the game will find plenty to love in each Intro Deck with additional copies of popular neutral cards like Great Hall (Core Set, 41) and Milk of the Poppy (Core Set, 32), and key faction-specific cards to strengthen your favorite decks. Each House Intro Deck also features alternate art versions of the House’s faction card and Fealty (Core Set, 27) agenda, allowing you to proudly display your loyalty.
Today, we're pleased to offer you a closer look at the House Stark Intro Deck, House Lannister Intro Deck, House Greyjoy Intro Deck, and House Baratheon Intro Deck for A Game of Thrones: The Card Game, now available for pre-order at your local retailer or online through our website!
The Wolves of Winterfell
The House Stark Intro Deck plays to the aggressive side of the faction, launching you into battle with powerful military characters and cards that focus of giving you the early advantage. With warriors like Eddard Stark (Wolves of the North, 3) and Jon Snow (Wolves of the North, 5) on your side, you can initiate military challenges whenever possible and use card effects to raise your claim. By attacking early, your opponent will be forced to take defensive action, delaying their progress as you gain power and move steadily towards victory.
This deck also gives you the chance to fully embrace the theme of your House by exploring the Direwolf trait. In addition to long-time Stark staples like Summer (Core Set, 148), you also gain powerful newcomers like the upgraded version of the regal Nymeria (Favor of the Old Gods, 61). In addition to the intimidate keyword, Nymeria has the powerful ability to lead your entire pack into confrontation. You may even choose to further increase the pack’s ferocity by giving them a Taste for Flesh (Sands of Dorne, 34), feeding a defending character to your favorite bonded beast.
The Lions of Casterly Rock
The House Lannister Intro Deck features an emphasis on intrigue challenges, which you can use to shred your enemy’s hand and leave them with few strategic options left. If you can force your opponent to discard most of their hand, they'll be at the mercy of their deck, relying on what they draw each turn. You can further exercise your power over your opponent's deck with characters like Tywin Lannister (Lions of Casterly Rock, 6), who can use the pillage keyword to manipulate the cards on top of your enemy's deck. With a few well laid plans, you can also use cards like The Things I Do for Love (Core Set, 101) and Unexpected Delay (Lions of Casterly Rock, 47) to bounce cards from your enemy’s board to their hand and immediately discard them with your intrigue claim.
But such power comes with a price. Luckily, the Lannisters have a plethora of cards designed to create surplus economy. With locations like Golden Tooth (Lions of Casterly Rock, 17) and The Goldroad (The Brotherhood Without Banner, 110), you are always ready to bribe a corrupt maester or pay off mercenaries. This bonus cache of gold will prove to be an even greater benefit as A Game of Thrones: The Card Game moves into the Dance of Shadows cycle, which gives you plenty of new ways to spend your gold as you marshal cards into shadows or bring them forth, into the light. The Lannisters’ unparalleled wealth will help you spring your plans on your enemy and destroy them with one fell strike.
The Krakens of Pyke
The men of Pyke are not soldiers, they are raiders. Their strength comes from their ability to thit their opponent when they are at their least prepared. With the House Greyjoy Intro Deck, you are equipped to specialize in unopposed challenges with your most stealthy characters, such as Maester Wendamyr (Core Set, 70). Or, you may simply call upon the Support of Harlaw (Favor of the Old Gods, 72) to give stealth to any of your characters. While your opponent’s back is turned, you can quickly and efficiently gather power to win the battle practically before it begins.
This deck is also designed to aggressively destroy your opponent’s defenses, encouraging you to strike first and attack whenever possible with a plethora of cards with the pillage keyword, similar to the Lannisters. However, unlike the Wardens of the West, the Greyjoys make the most of every raid. Cards like Fleet from Pyke (Sands of Dorne, 27) and Tris Botley (Journey to Oldtown, 32) reward you for moving cards from your opponent’s deck to their discard pile by increasing the versatility of your fighters or giving you the chance to remove a particularly nasty enemy from the game altogether. By striking beneath your opponent’s defenses and raiding their shores, you will soon have an impressive lead.
The Stags of Storm’s End
As the story of A Song of Ice and Fire begins, the Baratheons are the ruling House seated on the Iron Throne. This position gives them a House Intro Deck that focuses on winning dominance and the all-important power challenges at the heart of A Game of Thrones: The Card Game. While this goal is consistent across all Houses, the House Baratheon Intro Deck is filled with cards that offer you additional benefits for gaining power. For example, Ser Cortnay Penrose (Sands of Dorne, 25) stands to gives you extra strength for the dominance phase or the chance to use him in a second challenge, while The Bastard of Nightsong (Someone Always Tells, 107) lets you steal more power from your opponent.
Perhaps the most dominant theme of the House Baratheon Intro Deck is forcing others to bend the knee. While you can use the abilities of your loyal followers, such as the Dragonstone Faithful (Core Set, 56) to increase your own efficiency, you can also force your opponent’s characters to kneel with events like Stannis's Wrath (Journey to Oldtown, 28) and Even Handed Justice (Wolves of the North, 26). Kneeling characters keeps them from participating in challenges, helping you to control the battlefield and damaging your opponent's chance to win dominance at the end of the round. To further solidify your strength, you can use Light of the Lord (Guarding the Realm, 28) and The Iron Throne (Core Set, 38) to win dominance while still participating in multiple challenges. Your enemy will be left scrambling to keep up with your rapid pace as you rack up power and race to victory.
Call the Banners
As you learn more about the Houses that battle to rule Westeros, the choice is yours as to who is truly deserving of power. Will you align with the noble Starks, the cunning Lannisters, the brutal Greyjoys, or the formidable Baratheons? Or, are your motives more self-serving, devoting yourself to another faction? No matter which you choose, the road to power will be paved with blood. Do you have the strength, the guile, and the resilience to claim the Iron Throne? Choose your House and join the battle for the realm!
Pre-order your copy of the House Stark Intro Deck (GT37), House Lannister Intro Deck (GT38), House Greyjoy Intro Deck (GT39), and House Baratheon Intro Deck (GT40) at your local retailer today or online through the Fantasy Flight Games website here!
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