Jonny Chu's First Order Dark Deal

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mryellow
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Jonny Chu's First Order Dark Deal

Post by mryellow »

This is the Dark Deal list I played Day 1 of the MPC. It went 4-0 and pretty much crushed the opposition.

The deck was born out of my extreme dislike for porting so many of the same cards from dark deck to dark deck that seemed to have very little utility in most matchups or did one thing and then became a blank card for the rest of the game. Cards like Cold Feet v, Kuat Drive Yards v, No Escape, 3x Accelerate and Bridge, I wanted to minimize them. The deck was created a week before the MPC and I passed it on to Albany and to KToD. I didn't hear much from Albany back about the deck but KToD ran with it, tried out better guys instead of the troopers (not as good), optimized the last few cards. They helped streamline the deck substantially into its current form.

One more thing: this is NOT a beatdown deck. This deck feels and plays more like a Dark Side WHAP.

Start (8)
This Deal Is Getting Worse All The Time objective
Cloud City: Carbonite Chamber
Imperial Arrest Order/Secret Plans
Prepared Defenses
You Cannot Hide Forever/Mobilization Points
Bow To The First Order
Endor Shield v (usually)
Knowledge & Defense v

Locations (5)
Bespin
Bespin: Cloud City
Cloud City: East Platform (Docking Bay)
Cloud City: Security Tower v
Executor: Docking Bay

Characters (20)
First Order Stormtrooper x4
Kylo Ren x2
Captain Phasma x2
FN-2003 x2
Darth Maul with Lightsaber x2
General Hux
Admiral Piett
Admiral Chiraneau
Grand Admiral Thrawn
Mara Jade with Lightsaber
Dengar with Blaster Carbine v
Dr Evazan and Ponda Baba
General Grievous

Starships (4)
Executor
Onyx 2 v x2
Colonel Jendon in Onyx 1

Effects (8)
They Must Never Again Leave This City x3
Cloud City Occupation
Dark Deal
Strategic Reserves v
Imperial Decree v
All Too Easy

Interrupts (13)
Imperial Command x3
Sonic Bombardment x3
Trooper Assault x2
Force Push v x2
Imperial Barrier x2
Ghhhk & Those Rebels Won't Escape Us

Other (2)
We're In Attack Position Now
Deflector Shield Generators v

Gameplay thoughts:

The deck is a little complicated the first 3 turns so I'll explain the thought process. It takes some practice and will feel fragile the first few times you play it.

Against most decks, you do the start listed above. Against WHAP, you start Imp Decree over Endor Shield and ditch YCHF/Mob for Endor Shield.

The first thing you do is pull Executor, then Piett and Chiraneau. If you have Sonic you get the Security Tower; if you have Imp Command, you get General Hux. Activate. You use your objective pull and while you're in there you are counting for all the pieces of the puzzle: Security Tower + 3 Sonics, Hux + 3 Imp Commands, 3 free Executor effects, 3 TIEs, 2 Kylo, 2 Phasma, 2 FN depending on the matchup, the DB, Dark Deal, CC Occupation, the system and the sector, Strategic Reserves, the admiral's order. If you practice on Holotable you need to do it in real life too because Holotable sorts it automatically and real life isn't as kind. It takes a few minutes so apologize to your opponents. You will make up for this lost time by draining them for 8+ and doing very little later on so don't feel too bad.

What you do next depends on the matchup. If you're playing against something that gives you 2 force to start, the ideal turn 1 is take Bespin into hand and deploy it, Executor DB from Reserve using IAO, Piett there, pull the admiral's order, the free Executor, play the AO, 1 for Chiraneau. You can still do all this if they pull Goldenrod, which is actually usually better because the deck shield busts too. That's a hell of a first turn.

From here on there are a lot of conditionals:

If you don't have the free Executor, and there are no free Executor effects or Sonics/the Security Tower in your Force Pile, I would play Piett to bait your opponent into pulling Don't Do That Again v.

If your Force Pile is full of good stuff, you may want to draw. Your priority in most games is to get out the Executor as fast as possible to get your opponent to play Battle Plan or apply early drains of 2, and your second priority is to get out the Security Tower. If you're playing against a deck that isn't likely to challenge you on the ground turn 1 (Brian Fred's HB, QMC, Old Allies, maybe WHAP come to mind) or if you have a Barrier in opening hand and are feeling lucky, or want to get them to pull Battle Order, AND you have something good in your Force Pile like a Sonic or free Executor effect, you can deploy Phasma or Hux to the site and hope you fish it out with Bow. Bow makes this deck hum - but you also can't waste the pulls.

If your Force Pile is full of jank, which is rare because usually there's something you want, you leave it. Just pass. If there's only one or two cards in there and you draw and you get it/them, you stop. You want to build a small bankroll in your Force Pile because there is a vomit turn coming up where you just drop everything you need for Deal and you want to make sure there's nothing in the bottom you need to Bow for because you're likely going to move a TIE to the system that turn, and maybe consolidate on the ground, and you don't want those last couple Force you use to be something you need to get.

The next turn you pull the sector or Deal into hand ideally. The sector you don't deploy until you are ready to set up Deal, OR it's a matchup where you don't plan on playing Deal (TRM comes to mind) and you need the force. Again, your priority is getting out the free Executor and the Security Tower. This turn you want to start collecting Kylo/Phasma/Hux and the TIE for the vomit turn which will likely happen next turn. Turn 3 seems to be the median turn the Deal comes out when you want it to come out. As long as you have a Kylo/Phasma/Hux, and preferably more than one and even more preferably having Hux over the others, you don't need to worry about activating one or maybe two pieces of the puzzle you might be missing, because you can fish them out. It's like having a huge hand. That's why it's super important to build a stash of force that you don't care at all about - because the deploy phase on turn 3 is what you're aiming for.

Turn 3 you play everything. Don't forget your power is +4 with Deal out, if you leave your TIE at the system it's another +1, if they don't occupy the system all their deploy is +1. The deck has a strange natural choke for giving up 4 icons (which I hate). Also, move Piett to the CC DB or the bridge of the Executor unless you need the extra force from Mob Points.


Card choices/miscellaneous plays:

All Too Easy:This card is really money against WYS, but it's obviously great against other decks too. Taking a guy out of battle straight up is amazing, especially when their big guys are usually defense value -1 from You Cannot Hide Forever, and then your little troopers add an additional -1 each. Your destinies are mostly 3-5 which make it so you never miss. Oh, and if you're flipped they lose 8 force.

(((Sonic Bombardment: Obviously this card is for getting out the Security Tower. You have the additional benefit of making them lose 3 if you All Too Easy an alien. It sounds gimmicky but it's extra utility out of a card you're playing already, PLUS the game it happens in is one of the hardest matchups in Watch Your Step. Don't hit Luke. Hit Talon Karrde.)))
*******EDIT - Jan pointed out this doesn't work. Please move along.

They Must Never Again Leave This City/TIEs: Don't forget that moving away costs +1. More importantly, don't forget the TIE text. The TIE text is what makes this deck so amazing. All your TIEs react and you can forfeit one to hand once per turn. That means:
* infinite shields with Onyx 2, when you already start Secret Plans, so you NEVER shield bust and have the luxury to play great shields like Code Clearance, Death Star Sentry vs Quads and Imperial Detention for like Master Luke in Profit, and you always have Firepower v retrieving you cards;
* EPP Maul/Mara can act as bait at the docking bay by themselves; you react Onyx 1 to the DB when they fight and you have that huge 6 forfeit to soak up their battle destiny, since it goes back into hand;
* in space, if you have both TIEs together, you get their added battle destiny every turn because you can fight on your turn, forfeit one to hand, and it can react the next turn if they battle.

General Grievous: FN kills lots of lightsabers and Grievous likes to munch on lightsabers. Also, he pings with the AO.

Dengar with Blaster Carbine v: this guy could be anyone. P-59 is good too. I like Dengar because WYS is a tough matchup, plus he's an alien for the alien/Imperial pair text on the objective, plus defense values come down as mentioned before so shooting twice seems really good.

4x First Order Stormtrooper: at first glance, this deck looks like a beatdown deck. It is NOT a beatdown deck. The troopers are there mostly for the Reserves, somewhat for the defense value text and lastly to be able to apply a small beatdown. Generally, though, if you find yourself itching to do a beatdown, you should consider playing the Court Troopers deck instead. In fact, as a general rule, if you find yourself wanting to go off-planet with this list, don't do it. Or, switch the Barriers into They're Still Coming Through or something first.

Strategic Reserves: this card is essential to this deck working. Basically they can't ignore you. Especially for the MPC, when I figured nobody would know what to do against the deck, if the opponent decided to ignore you and play Melas to the Cantina and Dash to Kessel, this card defeats that strategy entirely. Also, against a deck like Throne Room, this card is money. Read more in the matchup section immediately below.

The objective: it's rare but there are times you deploy Deal but don't flip the objective. Understand when you can take advantage of this and you can still use the objective to pull Occupation the next turn.



Matchups - this section is key. I ran a ton of solo games against the most common decks before the tournament. Some were easy, and some required some experience to feel comfortable to play against.

EASY GAMES:

Old Allies with speeders. They can't interact with you inside and they typically don't play Menace Fades. The damage reduction text is nothing when faced with drains of 2 3 3 1 2 ping 2 ping 2 when everything is out. This isn't much of a game.

Rebel Strike Team. The crux of this game is they are screwed because if they go kind of light to blow the bunker you can stop them on the ground, and if they go too heavy they are wasting their guys there because of IAO. You do your thing, you don't fear space since their space is really light so you can leave your TIE at the sector for additional drains and Piett can go reinforce the ground. You have Firepower most of this game. Decree v reduces the blow damage by 3 or 4 and you just drain them out.

Combat. They play very few different guys, you have Resistance all game and if they come to you FN-2003 makes them fresh meat. Their defense value is frighteningly low, their space is terrible, you are super fast and they just fold.

QMC. This game is incredibly fun. The plan is to ping them to death. You likely won't keep Deal out but the turn they cancel it they are over-extended and either have to blow 3 guys they wouldn't play otherwise and consolidate them at a worthless site while you drain/ping for 5-6 the next turn, or you beat them down at multiple sites. The main thing you need to do is get the Executor out as soon as possible to take advantage of the deploy -1 text on their Bespin. You can Turn 2 Deal them if you have the right draw (free Ex effect and a TIE) because obviously you don't need the Security Tower because they provide the extra site and your guys are so cheap. Once you get Deal out, you want to convert their system so the turn they try to cancel, they're choked one icon plus all their stuff deploys +1. Losing the extra drain damage is a small price to pay for that.

Hidden Base Quads: This game was an auto-loss until Deflector Shield Generators the night before. It's so easy to find with Force Push v x2 plus Bow so you don't play the Executor in this game until you find DSG and then you just roll.

MEDIUM GAMES:

Any mains deck (Profit, TRM). These decks have a terrible choice to make: play light to the ground, say, Jedi Luke with saber to the Carbonite Chamber, and risk getting FN'd, or play super heavy and then you don't deploy Deal and just be content with the drain/ping and lean on Strategic Reserves to stop their damage. You can also catch them with a well-timed All Too Easy or Evazan because their defense value is so incredibly poor. They can't ignore you, they can't fight you. I was initially worried about TRM but then after running games against Justin it's surprising how well the game plan holds up.

***EDIT: More detail to the TRM matchup. I assume Don't Do That Again shield is the first shield pull, which obviously slows you down like crazy. The key to this is locking down space early. The early game becomes activate, pull with the objective and look if the Executor or TIEs were activated. You need to remember what's not in your force pile from previous turns so you can Bow accurately, or use the Mob Points pull accurately when you get your TIE. Patience is the key in this matchup.


HARD GAMES:

Watch Your Step. This can be a pain because they can apply some fairly quick pressure and they also can flip you back relatively easy because they play starfighters over capitals so they only need 2 ground sites to cancel Deal, plus they will convert your Admiral's Order at some point and it's really hard for you to get it back. Ghhhk combo and Dengar help a little bit, the All Too Easy/Sonic lost tech helps a little bit. Their choke can hurt you so be judicious with your force pile. I found Justin's WYS to be tougher than Tom Kelly's WYS because the extra guys go a long way toward canceling Deal and establishing elsewhere. The upside is many common lists don't play Endor Celebration so your Occupation might stick around.

***EDIT: I forgot to mention it's important in WYS not to play the Cloud City: DB until you are ready to deploy Deal. I use my Bow pull on the docking bay sometimes. If Jedi Luke goes to the Carbonite Chamber, you want him to (1) not have anywhere to Dodge to or (2) Dodge to the Security Tower where hopefully he won't be doing much harm.

Space WHAP. Out of all decks, I felt like WHAP gave this the most trouble, for a lot of similar reasons to the WYS. You can't get a beatdown off because of Jerus (not that you should be trying to anyway, didn't you read the top of the post?). They can cancel Deal fairly easily. They can convert the AO. You can ignore Naboo because of Strategic Reserves and you will likely have Firepower a bunch but it's definitely a chess match. This is a really fun game.

That's it! Thanks for reading this incredibly long synopsis. It takes a few tries to get used to but I've always found Deal to be a very fun, interactive deck to play and I looked forward to all my games at the MPC playing this deck. Enjoy.
Last edited by mryellow on January 9th, 2017, 11:54 pm, edited 2 times in total.


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Darth_Link
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Re: Jonny Chu's First Order Dark Deal

Post by Darth_Link »

This is how you write about your deck.
5 stars

Will try this for sure
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Re: Jonny Chu's First Order Dark Deal

Post by Yoda007 »

nice to see the behind the deck thoughts and strategy!

also, congrats on the win!
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Re: Jonny Chu's First Order Dark Deal

Post by Xanth »

Thanks for the write up! Looks like a lot of fun. I've been toying with Deal for a while but haven't been nearly this successful. The Bow stuff certainly helps. Thoughts on Bewil(v), Blizzard 4, EPP Vader, Stormtrooper Patrol, and Stormtrooper Garrison?
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Re: Jonny Chu's First Order Dark Deal

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Xanth wrote:Thanks for the write up! Looks like a lot of fun. I've been toying with Deal for a while but haven't been nearly this successful. The Bow stuff certainly helps. Thoughts on Bewil(v), Blizzard 4, EPP Vader, Stormtrooper Patrol, and Stormtrooper Garrison?

I almost ran this at the MPC but couldn't pull the trigger. We only got it up and running about 4 days before the event and I just didn't have the reps to feel comfortable.

That said, my list had Blizzard 4. I thought he was amazing in all the games I played. I also used him to pull Maarek Stele who I used to pull an onyx.

EPP Mara > EPP Vader b/c of the flip side of the objective and wanting an alien/imperial pair, which she is on her own.

We had bewil at first, but cut him because if you had deal out you were winning, but were considering putting him back in for his preventing Deal from being canceled. Our original lists had patrols but they ended up being really bad and we cut them.

Garrisons were never in this version but we considered an imperial version that still used hux to pull Reserves non-v.
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Re: Jonny Chu's First Order Dark Deal

Post by TB »

wow. what a deck. cant wait to build this.
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Re: Jonny Chu's First Order Dark Deal

Post by Ghosttrain »

Such a cool deck. I've always loved the tie text on tmnaltc, it is very underrated especially combine with the onyx guys. I am very surprised by the lack of a Vader in this deck, I understand why Mara is slightly better but why not have both?

I'm not sure that sonic bomb will work on frozen captives.
A frozen
captive:
 cannot be attacked by creatures (not even with the
game text on Great Pit of Carkoon)
 cannot be tortured or interrogated in any way (using
any card titled: IT-O, Hypo, EV-9D9, Aiii! Aaa!
Agggggggggg!, Interrogation Array, Sonic
Bombardment
and Cloud City: Interrogation Room,
along with cards that in some way mimic this ability,
such as Expand The Empire).
It has been a while since I've been this excited to try a new starwars deck, thanks for the write up and congratulations on the finish.
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Re: Jonny Chu's First Order Dark Deal

Post by mryellow »

Ghosttrain wrote:Such a cool deck. I've always loved the tie text on tmnaltc, it is very underrated especially combine with the onyx guys. I am very surprised by the lack of a Vader in this deck, I understand why Mara is slightly better but why not have both?

I'm not sure that sonic bomb will work on frozen captives.
A frozen
captive:
 cannot be attacked by creatures (not even with the
game text on Great Pit of Carkoon)
 cannot be tortured or interrogated in any way (using
any card titled: IT-O, Hypo, EV-9D9, Aiii! Aaa!
Agggggggggg!, Interrogation Array, Sonic
Bombardment
and Cloud City: Interrogation Room,
along with cards that in some way mimic this ability,
such as Expand The Empire).
Oh good call on the Sonic, I didn't realize that. I'll fix it in the write-up. Good thing it only happened in solo games.

I would love to fit in a Vader but just ran out of slots. I like that Mara is an alien and that she is cheaper. Another card I was messing with is Intensify The Forward Batteries, but it ultimately didn't make the cut and Mara is kind of vestigial from that, too. I suppose one of the Mauls could become a Vader for some more variety.

Thanks for the input.
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Re: Jonny Chu's First Order Dark Deal

Post by mserisman »

Great write up, and congrats on the finish! This kind of write up is what makes this community great! Much appreciated.

I have a similar version than Lingrell and I were playing around with. I like the tweaks you made and especially explaining the opening turns strategy.

I sacked mine mostly because I kept running into WHAP space which really hurt it, but will pull it out and try again.
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Re: Jonny Chu's First Order Dark Deal

Post by mryellow »

Xanth wrote:Thanks for the write up! Looks like a lot of fun. I've been toying with Deal for a while but haven't been nearly this successful. The Bow stuff certainly helps. Thoughts on Bewil(v), Blizzard 4, EPP Vader, Stormtrooper Patrol, and Stormtrooper Garrison?
Bewil: like Mike said, he was in and then out. I like the idea of his interrupt pull but those games, it was largely unnecessary. Certainly unnecessary in a SoS tournament. In some ways I'd rather play Bewil non-v to trap.

Blizzard 4: Could be good, especially pulling Maarek Steele or Bewil. I'd say it's the 65th card atm.

EPP Vader: see reply to Jan.

Stormtrooper Patrol: the original list had 2 and I loved the idea. The more I played the deck the more I realized I didn't use the guy at all, he doesn't synergize with Strategic Reserves v or Hux. It went down to 1, then he was gone, and honestly I didn't even notice. Same with Point Man - I love the idea of reacting Captain Phasma around but it just never happened. That card started at 2x too, then 1x, then 0.

Stormtrooper Garrison: I don't play enough Imperial leaders to maximize this guy. I toyed with Admiral Ozzel and think there could be a variant with maybe 2x Phasma, 2x FN and then these guys and Ozzel/Maarek or something instead of the non-unique first order guys. Blizzard 4 would be in that variant too. It's a different deck and if you try it please let me know how it goes. I just ran out of time.
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Re: Jonny Chu's First Order Dark Deal

Post by marines28 »

Thanks for the details!
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Re: Jonny Chu's First Order Dark Deal

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Tested it quickly twice. DD turn 3 both games, after checking deck, drawing when necessary, deploying when necessary and saving force when necessary (as described). When reading the strategy it seems complex, but it's kinda simple (in a genius way).

DD won both games, but game 1 was very close (which was vs OA speeders, an "easy game" :-D ). OA opted to not flip and instead focus on a) setting up H1 and stacked falcon to move to Bespin, and b) take control of the DB with all speeders. OA setup took a while though, so DD did at least 15 damage, before Ani and Caldera helped cancelling DD (Bewil would have made cancelling impossible, so I will consider including him).
Strategic likely won the damage race in the end, when no deal on table, as OA did drains of 2,2,1 for a while.

When you set up on 3 sites, CC and Bespin, you could definitely feel the power of the deck. Especially if you have a Barrier in hand, and some backup characters, TMNALTC on table, a TIE in hand etc. I like it.
mryellow wrote: The deck was born out of my extreme dislike for porting so many of the same cards from dark deck to dark deck that seemed to have very little utility in most matchups or did one thing and then became a blank card for the rest of the game. Cards like Cold Feet v, Kuat Drive Yards v, No Escape, 3x Accelerate and Bridge, I wanted to minimize them.
I can definitely relate to this. But tbf, even this version plays a bunch of dead cards. Extra TMNALTC, Sonics that have a single purpose, extra Force Push v, etc. So you can never completely get away from that.
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Re: Jonny Chu's First Order Dark Deal

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deck wrote:
Xanth wrote:EPP Mara > EPP Vader b/c of the flip side of the objective and wanting an alien/imperial pair, which she is on her own.
I don't think she is, as she is a single character - not a pair of characters. There were some rulings about this in the past as far as I remember.
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Re: Jonny Chu's First Order Dark Deal

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Yoda007 wrote:
deck wrote:
Xanth wrote:EPP Mara > EPP Vader b/c of the flip side of the objective and wanting an alien/imperial pair, which she is on her own.
I don't think she is, as she is a single character - not a pair of characters. There were some rulings about this in the past as far as I remember.
We were wondering that too and just forgot to ask but still she is great because even if she doesn't singularily trigger it, she is "either or" with other guys.

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Re: Jonny Chu's First Order Dark Deal

Post by Yoda007 »

plus, she is no dark jedi... can drain vs Combat :)
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Re: Jonny Chu's First Order Dark Deal

Post by Xanth »

allstarz97 wrote:
Yoda007 wrote:
deck wrote:
Xanth wrote:EPP Mara > EPP Vader b/c of the flip side of the objective and wanting an alien/imperial pair, which she is on her own.
I don't think she is, as she is a single character - not a pair of characters. There were some rulings about this in the past as far as I remember.
We were wondering that too and just forgot to ask but still she is great because even if she doesn't singularily trigger it, she is "either or" with other guys.
Uh weird I didn't write that..

You guys don't think an EPP Vader is important for the TIGIH match? They'll do a lot of interacting on your sites. If you can't set up DD against them, Kylo could be a liability, and looping your TIEs could be less relevant if you're still getting pinged those battles by their effect.
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Re: Jonny Chu's First Order Dark Deal

Post by quickdraw3457 »

Played against this deck played by Chris Twigg game 1 in the sunday consolation. Really good deck, sets up sneaky fast. People don't consider Deal to be a quick deck but this one seemed to set up very efficiently.
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Re: Jonny Chu's First Order Dark Deal

Post by darkjediknight11 »

quickdraw3457 wrote:Played against this deck played by Chris Twigg game 1 in the sunday consolation. Really good deck, sets up sneaky fast. People don't consider Deal to be a quick deck but this one seemed to set up very efficiently.
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Re: Jonny Chu's First Order Dark Deal

Post by darkjediknight11 »

oh heh, also chu, you shouldn't pass the first action of your activate phase ("thinking"), as some people might take that opportunity to pass as well and not let you activate :P
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Re: Jonny Chu's First Order Dark Deal

Post by quickdraw3457 »

darkjediknight11 wrote:oh heh, also chu, you shouldn't pass the first action of your activate phase ("thinking"), as some people might take that opportunity to pass as well and not let you activate :P
Ha, I noticed that too while watching him play a game. But good guys all around, didn't matter.
Matt C. - Pittsburgh, PA
multimedia@starwarsccg.org
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Hunter wrote:quickdraw is right

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