"Evil is a Choice" Gadget Cavalry, 5-0 2017

published Aug 28, 2017 | | |
Card draw simulator
Odds: 0% – 0% – 0% – 0% more
Derived from
None. Self-made deck here.
Inspiration for
None yet

Harlath 751

This is the deck I took to 5-0 during the Swiss at GenCon 2017's "Evil is a Choice" event. This was a great event with excellent attendance: c30 players playing closely fought games but with plenty of smiles and jokes. In particular, thumbs up to Ricahrd Carter and others for reminding opponents about the Servitor cards, even when it was to the cost of the player offering the reminder. Wonderful to see this. Well done too to Laura for taking Sloane & Stone to the T4, surprising many players who had doubted that faction and Servitor (albeit player skill many have had something to do with this too!). The eventual winner, James, piloted a technical deck with great skill and made a fine choice (John Henry Holiday/Doc Holiday, a perfect choice for Tombstone). The other finalists deck is well worth checking out too, an all draw starting posse with Grimme and strong attrition elements: I'm always pleased to see inventive Eagle Wardens show that there are competitive Eagle Wardens decks that aren't Spirit Fortress. Delighted to see lots show up at the end of the Epitaph events and in various GenCon events.

Also nice to see TybarSunsong and one or two others making story choices and never triggering their Servitor during the tournament: "Evil is a Choice" and it was nice to see players engage with this. Pinebox even mentioned on Discord that this got them thinking about future story choices - great to see player decisions having an impact. :)

I dropped after the Swiss match-ups to let somebody else play in the T8 as it became clear that while the new Legends had been previewed ahead of the tournament, the playtest team had enjoyed a significant benefit in testing these cards for many months. It did not seem fair for me to have a shot at naming a new Legend on the back of this unfair advantage (although I'd probably have scrubbed out of the T8 anyway due to the curse of going unbeaten in Swiss!). I wouldn't want to force my ethics on to other playtesters (after, I played through to the Euros finals with no new cards involved that I'd tested but some errata I'd worked on in effect), and generally cards are previewed with significant lead time, but in this case there was an exciting prize on offer and there weren't just new cards involved but new card types (legends!) so I hope people can understand my decision.

This is a standard deck abusing the very strong (too strong?) Calling The Cavalry. Everyone had to use a Legend in this special tournament, and my choice was this deck or a Grimme deck that had tested well at Wednesday's very enjoyable at Kilroy's. Thanks to Pinebox for organising this - very well attended and it was great to put faces to lots of forum names. I worried that various hex tricks would struggle against Yagn's Mechanical Skeleton, so I went with Hellstromme gadgets on the day.

Darius Hellstromme helps overcome the slightly thin control points on some of the deeds and won me at least a couple of games by generating more CP and helped against attrition decks by forcing fatalities. Irving Patterson and Maggie Harris help generate ghost rock/provide discounts to overcome the Legend's mild starting cost, and fetching Yagn's Mechanical Skeleton with Maggie means it is easy to get Jarrett Blake in to fights to fulfill the gadget weapon requirement for when you need to go on the offensive. The influence from your gadgets keeps you in the game long enough to build a solid economy and hire more dudes/find dude removal cards against slide or Showboatin' decks.

I went 3x Run 'Em Down! and 1x Kidnappin' to have a job to target key dudes like Clementine Lepp, Danny Wilde and Nicodemus Whateley, an improvement planned from my previous horse decks.

Running eight off value cards is a bit looser than I sometimes go, but with one starting stud, Yagn's Mechanical Skeleton, Calling The Cavalry and various back-up weapons I generally had enough stud to make good hands and choose whether or not I cheated. I wanted to do this to fit in A Slight Modification, as cancelling opposing abilities is incredibly strong and helped win games and my mechanical skeletons and auto revolvers don't boot, so this gave them something to do apart from Hellstromme's ability.

There's a bit of vulnerability in the starting posse as there is only one starting mad scientist and only two more in the deck, so this might need to be tweaked.

Special thanks to Blargg for taking over on dtdb and for getting the Cards from There Comes a Reckoning added to dtdb so quickly. It suddenly all feels more real now that I can see "Cards up to There Comes a Reckoning" on this website! Additional thanks to Pinebox for announcing that there are a further 24 cards to be added to There Comes a Reckoning, it is great that Blarrg's work uploading these isn't finished.

I'd consider adding a second Auto-Revolver as it is an excellent, cheap weapon and can help fulfill Hellstromme's requirement and be used for A Slight Modification. My original draft had The Pharmacy instead of Grimoires & More, but I left the former at home so I had to make do with what I had with me at the tournament! :)

Aug 28, 2017 jaythejester

Love it, aside from how much I personally loathe HRM, but it looks a great deck overall, not just for a mandatory servitor tourney. Small suggestion I might make is considering Quarantine Tent. It is very good with Morgan Regulators.

Aug 28, 2017 Harlath

Thanks for the kind words!

Good suggestion on Quarantine Tent - I sometimes focus too much on my starting economy. This leads prioritising early game economic deeds and neglecting mid to long term opportunities like this.

I'm sympathetic to your point on hand rank modification (HRM). Outgunned has always felt like HRM done right to me: it only boosts a hand rank by two, needs more bullets, can only be used once per round and requires an unbooted shooter. It allows you opponent to attempt counter play by dropping your bullets or manuevering to force your likely shooters to boot to join etc. Indeed, the person using Outgunned is sometimes faced between choosing between a booted strong shooter (preventing Outgunned from being played) and an unbooted weaker shooter (allowing Outgunned to be played, but with fewer cards to make a shootout hand): choices like this make for interesting games! :)

In contrast, Calling The Cavalry and Hex Slingin' are much easier to trigger, with the former potentially boosting your hand rank by more than two while the latter can sometimes be used more than once in a round!