This would be our first local tournament after the release of Empire at War, which would be a great opportunity for all of us to try some different teams in this newly-forming meta.
We were both able to attend, so this is going to be a joint tournament report.
Tim: I decided to go with a bit of old and new, using General Grievous, and the new Kylo Ren from the two-player decks. I’ve always liked Grievous, but the problem has been that he’s a bit squishy and he tends to get targeted first, and at eighteen points for the elite version he’s nearly your whole team. By pairing him at one dice with an elite version of Kylo (who is a lot less squishy and for one point fewer), he is unlikely to be attacked first and has a greater chance of being able to use his ability (steal their stuff!).
Along the current dice mitigation and Force Illusion, Empire at War gave us another card that increases survivability, Ancient Lightsaber. It has some nice damage output for a two-cost upgrade, and can be put to the bottom of your deck to heal the attached character for two. A card that goes hand-in-hand with Ancient Lightsaber is Lightsaber Pull, allowing you to retrieve it (and Crossguard Saber).
Kylo and Grievous both have some results on their character dice that cost a resource to resolve. Luckily, there are two cards in Empire at War that help with this, Electrostaff and Imperial HQ. With these cards, and Rebel War Room as my battlefield, I felt fairly confident of always being able to resolve my dice.
Finally, since both characters were sporting a disrupt, I threw in Imperial Inspection because it is an annoying card to play against.
|eKylo2/Grievous by Tim Pickers|
|Battlefield –||Rebel War Room|
|Upgrades (10)||Supports (4)||Events (14)|
|2x Ancient Lightsaber||2x Imperial HQ||2x As I Have Foreseen|
|2x Crossguard Lightsaber||2x Imperial Inspection||2x Clash|
|2x Electrostaff||2x Doubt|
|2x Force Illusion||2x Isolation|
|2x Hate||2x Lightsaber Pull|
|2x Sound the Alarm|
Jaydee: For my first EaW deck it was always going to be Ahsoka leading it. Heading into this weekend’s tournament (our first EaW) my main fear is Kylo and his new ability, especially when using a mono deck. My mono blue deck is a basic aggro/weapons deck, since I had been away on EaW week release I didn’t get a chance to test any new cards or character out, so going into this tournament I’m in noob mode.
My plan is giving Kanan all the weapons as it would allow me to ready hard-hitting Ahsoka a lot easier.
Rey’s Lightsaber, to me is a must when using Lightsaber Pull, though the later works great on a Handcrafted Light Bow too. Do Or Do Not and Concentrate are good to get Ahsoka’s hits to land. Must admit my MVP card at the moment seems to be Sound the Alarm (apart from having an Ewok as artwork ftw!) this card has saved me from countless damage since adding it to pretty much all my decks.
|eAhsoka/eKanan by Jaydee Bore|
|Battlefield –||B’Omarr Monastery|
|Upgrades (12)||Support (0)||Events (18)|
|1x Ancient Lightsaber||2x Concentrate|
|2x Handcrafted Light Bow||2x Do Or Do Not|
|1x Lightsaber||2x Lightsaber Pull|
|2x Makashi Training||2x Lightsaber Training|
|2x Rey’s Lightsaber||2x Overconfidence|
|2x Shoto Lightsaber||2x Reaping the Crystal|
|2x Vibroknife||2x Sound the Alarm|
|2x Trust the Force|
|2x Use the Force|
Tim (eKylo2/Grievous) vs eAhsoka/eKanan:
Well, we were playing each other in the first round, bloody typical! Both teams came out swinging, and on the second round both Kanan and Kylo were defeated. Grievous took Rey’s Lightsaber from Kanan’s corpse, bypassing the redeploy. I gave him an Ancient Lightsaber on round three, and along with Force Illusion, he beat down Ahsoka is short order. WIN
Jaydee (eAhsoka/eKanan) vs eKylo2/Grievous:
Well things got to a great start, I sat down at my chair and then was told my opening round would be against my mentor/nemesis Tim’s Grievous and Kylo deck. My Kylo ability fear came true, yet my team held out pretty well against it.
On round two Kylo was swatted down faster than I expected, sadly my opponent didn’t fall for Ahsoka being my primary character (Kanan is my main character in this deck) and in return Kanan died straight after Kylo, handing over Rey’s Lightsaber to Grievous (yes, I forgot his disgusting pilfering ability) who took it like a boss and decided to knock Ahsoka around like a cheap wench for the fast kill. LOSS
Tim (eKylo2/Grievous) vs eCad/ePhasma2:
I’d played some practice games against Cad Bane, and his action economy with his ability can lead to some explosive damage, so I prioritised killing him; I managed it round two. Kylo died round three to a Bait and Switch into four damage from two Holdout Blasters. I’d done my best to keep Kylo alive up to that point; Force Illusion preventing three damage along with a heal from Ancient Lightsaber. Grievous stole a LL-30 from Cad, then burned Phasma down over two rounds. WIN
Jaydee (eAhsoka/eKanan) vs eRey1/Maz/Snap:
Kanan took Maz out second turn with a nice help of a Shoto Lightsaber, using his ability to help Ahsoka drive home even more damage. Kanan has been an amazing Rey replacement, not only on how cheap he is but unlike Rey, Kanan’s dice is fantastic and his ability (personally) I prefer to Rey’s.
No attaching upgrades to Ahsoka payed off well as she dismantled Rey round two by using her ability to re-activate her and deal max damage helped along with Do or Do Not.
As for Snap (for once I didn’t target him first), Kanan took good care of him with dual-wielding Shoto Lightsabers before Ahsoka performed the finishing blow.
In this game my deck showed me what it’s capable of if I get a lucky start and my opponent doesn’t, though I’m not a fan of luck therefore It gave me ideas what needed to go from the deck and what cards would help speed things up. WIN
Tim (eKylo2/Grievous) vs eHux/Ciena/Guavian:
Shout-out to Dan for relevant practice games; I’d played against General Hux recently and seen firsthand how good his special ability can be. Needless to say, I targeted him first, taking him down on round two. Imperial HQ was particularly useful in this game, allowing me to resolve my character dice while keeping resources back for more upgrades. I killed Ciena on round three, and the Guavian on round four. WIN
Jaydee (eAhsoka/eKanan) vs eKylo2/Grievous:
Like I’ve stated before, I hate playing new Kylo with a mono deck; giving an opponent free damage isn’t my idea of a good plan. This time we both had a slow start leading to Kylo’s damage been much more efficient against my team and nuking Kanan faster than expected (round three), before Ahsoka responded against Kylo to take him down that same round. This game Ahsoka was dual wielding Shoto Lightsabers and somehow had also a Lightbow that was found using Lightsaber Pull (non-thematic ftw), but sadly this time it was a game of luck as my opponent used four cards to reroll five damage the round before Ahsoka was about to hit him with all her melee dice plus a Lightbow special. LOSS
Tim (eKylo2/Grievous) vs ePalpatine:
This was definitely a favourable matchup for me since I was using the new Kylo, but Palpatine should never be underestimated; left unchecked he can do some serious damage. This game was the first one where I got some use out of Rend, and it was great; I waited until he rolled out Sith Holocron, he got a special, then I used Rend to get rid of it! I hit with Kylo’s ability three out of four times, and managed to defeat Palpatine on the fourth round, despite his use of Rise Again. WIN
Jaydee (eAhsoka/eKanan) vs eCad/ePhasma2:
This time luck started on my side as Bane didn’t draw any (weapon upgrades) leaving him vulnerable to Ahsoka who tried to burn him down fast leaving him with nine damage on her first assault. From there the game took a different turn as my opponents good dice control and shenanigans ensued. Bane survived longer than I expected managing to bring it back and kill Ahsoka round four, leaving Kanan with dual-wield Shotos and an Ancient Lightsaber to avenge Ahsoka, and hit the killing blow on Bane the turn after Ahsoka died. Sadly he was just one step behind a close to death Phasma who used Bait and Switch just enough damage to take him down. LOSS
Standings After Swiss
Tim (eKylo2/Grievous) vs ePalpatine:
Another Palpatine! This one was way more of a grind than the previous game against Palpatine. During this game, I had both of my copies of Imperial Inspection in play, and along with a well-timed Rend, helped keep my opponent’s Sith Holocrons and Force Speed under control. I was rolling pretty well in this game, so my opponent had to use his resources to keep my dice controlled, and as such wasn’t able to get off a Rise Again. I managed to defeat Palpatine on the fifth round, but both of my characters were not far from dead. WIN
Tim (eKylo2/Grievous) vs eThrawn/eUnkar:
In this matchup I always try and burn down Unkar as fast as possible. There are a few key cards in this kind of deck that get cut off if they cannot spot a yellow character, the most notable being Electroshock and Crime Lord. Thanks to a good amount of dice control, he was able to keep Unkar alive long enough to upgrade him with Crime Lord and use its special against Kylo. Grievous was upgraded with two copies of Hate and got Unkar down to two remaining health after activation, but had his character die controlled (Electroshock), then got Crime Lorded. Game was over round three! LOSS
eThrawn/eUnkar beat ePoe2/eRey2 (via mill victory)
|eThrawn/eUnkar used by Steve Stewart*|
|Battlefield –||Medical Center|
|Upgrades (5)||Support (11)||Events (14)|
|2x Blackmail||1x Detention Center||1x Ace in the Hole|
|2x Crime Lord||2x Hound’s Tooth||2x Buy Out|
|1x Prized Possession||2x Imperial Inspection||2x Coercion|
|2x Interrogation Droid||2x Confiscation|
|2x Probe Droid||2x Electroshock|
|2x Salvage Stand||1x He Doesn’t Like You|
|2x One-Quarter Portion|
|2x The Best Defense…|
[*Steve used the decklist presented here by swdestinydb user, TheRumHam.]
Steve had the following to say about the deck:
“Finally, a deck in Destiny that matches my play style (control). It was a lot of fun for me to play, not so much my opponents. The one game I lost was against a vehicle heavy deck; it definitely seems to be my hard counter. If they resolve a vehicle before I’m able to discard their hand, I’m immediately behind. Therefore I need to look at answers to add to the deck for vehicles.”
Reflections On Our Decks
Tim: On the whole, my deck worked very well. Grievous even got to use his ability a couple of times! Getting beaten by Crime Lord was a punch in the gut though. Looking over my dice mitigation choices, I didn’t have any decent answers for it. I really should have included The Best Defense, so I’d add two copies of that, and remove As I Have Foreseen (even with complete information of my opponent’s hand, I still guessed incorrectly more often than not!). Apart from that, without more playtesting I can’t see any obvious changes. All in all, pretty happy with it!
Jaydee: Choosing a mono blue deck didn’t seem to hurt me as much as I expected against Kylo. Yes, it was an inconvenience but with Kanan’s ability and the dice control I had I was able to burn him down fast.
Vibroknife (once my choice for any melee deck) was discarded every time I drew it and never saw gameplay leaving me to believe I could replace it for more events that allow me better dice control such as At Peace or Something Familiar.
Cards such as Reaping the Crystal helped a lot with Rey’s Lightsaber and the Lightbow, been able to bring those two weapons out turn one is a great feeling.
Kanan is definitely my MVP out of the two, I’ll be looking forwards to editing that same deck for better dice control and speed and also trying him out with others (Chirrut Imwe jumps to mind, as does new Poe Dameron).
Tim: There were nine villains teams and six heroes; pretty close to the usual 2-1 in favour of villains. Villains also made up seven of the top eight teams. However, I wouldn’t read too much into that due to the small sample size, and it’s still early days after the release of Empire at War (seriously, there are loads of character combinations still to be explored).
Some of you may wonder why we did a top eight cut with only fifteen players. We’ve found from previous events that if you only do the recommended top four cut for events this size, some of the players on a 3-1 record don’t make the cut due to tiebreakers, which is crap for those players that miss out.
Tiebreakers are a necessary evil, but by having a larger top cut, we can mitigate them somewhat. It doesn’t even add much more to the overall length of the event, since Destiny rounds are only 35 minutes. The entire tournament took four hours from start to finish, which is not much more than the average Friday Night Magic event. The tournament structure we use has been well-received by the players, and I encourage anyone who is dissatisfied with their own local event structure to have a word to their tournament organiser; they will most likely be open to suggestions.
Anyway, I could go on a complete tangent about tournament structures and how I generally dislike the standard method for determining top cuts, but I’ll leave it there for now. We hope you enjoyed the report!
Tim & Jaydee