Come on in to the Doctors Office - we got the cures for all that ails ya! *
*Disclaimer: Not responsible for any guests who are gunned down by the good Doc.
Took this super fun deck to Gencon 2019. The only goal was to bring something with Doc Holliday, and combined with wanting to use a new home, and wanting to see if the First Peoples could make it into the top 8 at Gencon - the choice was natural: Office of Ancestral Affairs shamans with Doc Holliday.
I've tweaked the living hell out of this deck, and I think it's in a good (but not perfect), and very strong place. Unfortunately I screwed up while building it the night before the tournament, and instead of 3 Silver Pheasant's Bounty, I accidentally only had one, plus 2 Spirit Dance that I misread as Silver Pheasants Bounty - lesson learned, never build decks in a hurry.
That was unfortunate, as Silver Pheasants are possibly the most important card in the deck, short of Doc. As you can see, the starting economy is not good, but all you need is a single in town deed. From there, either you get a Silver Pheasants in hand, or you get one with the home job in most cases. This deck really wants to fight early and often, so if they oppose your job, then all the better.
Once you get a single Silver Pheasant, you'll never have money problems again. The money in this deck is crazy, and it can very easily defend it's deeds (except for Maza Gang, which you don't even need to defend as they can't oppose your job, and is basically an easy Silver Pheasants). More than half the games I've played with this deck had a perpetual Steven Wiles, whose upkeep could easily be paid for - along with hiring other dudes. It's deceptive, but the income in this deck is just crazy as long as you start with at least one deed in the first day or two (which is why Travis Moone is important).
Otherwise, it's all about the crazy bullets - starting at 8 bullets with Doc, plus all the crazy bullets in the non starting dudes made it very easy to play Outgunned, and just generally draw lots of cards in hand. Many of the non starting dudes are 3+ bullets, which is great to be able to run the home job solo as well. Otherwise Travis and Matilda Loomis were a good pair to run the job early. Having 2 starting studs meant there was always a target to make someone into a 4 stud, thanks to Doc (+ Eva Bright Eyes). I was almost always drawing at least 9 cards in hand, and more often it was between 10-12 cards in hand plus 2-3 redraw - that is a ton of cards! I haven't consistently drawn this many cards into shootout hands since running morgan gadgets, who are one of the few other ways I can think of to consistently and quickly get 4+ stud dudes.
Feichi "Suitcase" Lee is the perfect dude for this home, as he can pull a dude into the fight who has previously run the home job. Simply having a way to bring a dude into the fight proved extremely valuable many times (helps mitigate Doc's downside, too!), and being able to boot dudes helped against pistol whips, point blanks, and other shenanigans. I originally would have preferred Mariel Lewis, as her ability is extremely powerful, but I needed to start with 3 GR minimum to be able to afford any deed I get in hand. I really ended up loving Suitcase, especially when he had a Pedro. Plus, multiple games I ended up hiring Mariel anyway, so it was the best of both worlds.
Virginia Ann Earp was a flex starter, following the trend from this years Marshal event in Edinburgh. I never ended up starting her, but one of the games I hired her was very important to stop the regular resolution of It's Who You Know and ended up helping to win that game. Obviously if I intend to use Outgunned, I will keep her out of the fight, but she's great to have all the other times (which is more often than not).
The lone Spirit Trail was either for Maza Gang Hideout if you run the job (getting the off value easily out of the deck), which is normally where Eva sits and makes money with Silver Pheasants, or for the home to ease the pain of running jobs.
I figured the combination of 3 Kidnappins + making each of my deeds 2 CP would be good against uninteractive, stay-at-home decks, but I didn't really face any of those. So I have yet to see if this is good against slide. The starting influence is a little low, but the combination of cheap dudes, and quickly being able to afford having a permanent Wiles on the board should help.
Overall this is the most fun deck I've played in a long time, and I'm sure I haven't even come close to mastering this home and it's various interactions and possibilities yet!
Round 1: Jordan with House of Many Faiths
First, House of Many Faiths was my first choice to play at this event, but I figured it would be super popular and I've already played a lot of Blessed. Needless so say I love that home, and was happy to have helped Jordan tune the deck over the past weeks via Discord. As I knew his deck very well, I tossed him my deck to flip through - it was only fair!
Huge props to Jordan with his deck - it was very good, and the combination of a starting Ol' Howard to grab The Joker's Smile was something I had my doubts about. Once seeing it in action, and the crazy amount of joker cycling back into the deck, I'm sold. I think Jordan may have created the first truly, 100% jank free use of Ol Howard! (not that he can't be good, or fun, but I'd previously thought all uses of him had at least some jank value).
I was as aggressive as I could be, and we both had constant legal full houses and 4 of a kinds against each other (his fueled often by reoccuring jokers, and mine by a crazy amount of stud), and his Martyr's Cry and my Turtle's Guard kept both of us from taking much in the way of casualties. It took many rounds throughout several shootouts, but eventually I started whittling away his dudes (with the help of 3 Outgunned that game - very hard to deal with when my hand was a constant legal rank 7 or higher). Unfortunately the game was about to go to time, but Jordan graciously conceded as he didn't see any realistic path to victory. It was a close game most of the way through, and a very fun one.
Round 2: Greg with original Law Dogs
Scariest starting posse that I think this game can muster: "Thunder Boy" Nabbe, Hattie DeLorre, Tommy Harden, Philip Swinford, and either Willa or Henry? I can't remember the 5th dude. I got going strong pretty early, and I can't remember if we got into some early shootouts (maybe at least one), but I remember being in a pretty solid position (I think with an early Mariel) and him having to often sit at home trying to build up (all the while putting lots of bounty on my dudes with his home, The Evidence, and his B & B Attorneys). I ran my home job often, putting quite a few extra CPs on my side (along with my single Silver Pheasants), and was getting very near the point of building up 1 CP beyond his influence to seal the win, when time was called. I had a ton of influence, plus all the CPs, so it wasn't particularly close. My memory of this whole tournament isn't great, but I do remember having a hard time against the Hattie + Thunder Boy + Tommy situation, but with Doc, Mariel, and some Unprepared on his dudes (including a clutch one against Thunder Boy) were enough. There was enough back and forth, maneuvering, and Wiles on both sides causing mischief, that it was a fun and interesting game.
Round 3: Zac, fellow 1st Peoples with Spiritual Society
Of course we got matched together, as we were both 2-0 with a win at time, and both gunning for top of faction! Since the moment totems were revealed, I'd always wondered how a game with shamans vs shamans would go, but neither Zac nor I had ever played in a game where both players had shamans and totems. Lowball winner proved to be an extremely important thing, which thankfully went back and forth somewhat evenly between us (maybe a bit more to me?) to make the game very interesting. Between the Spirit Trail at his home to potentially allow me to travel to his out of town deed to call out dudes, and his The Pack Awakens at a deed, lowball winner and movement was particularly important.
As always seems to be the case with Zacs decks, he squarely outmaneuvered me most of the game, but my successful first turn kidnappin against his only starting stud put him on his back heel much of the game, and I don't think he ever quite recovered from it (despite later hiring a good amount of solid, somewhat expensive dudes thanks to his Silver Pheasants Bounty, which I also occasionally used). He put up several good fights, but kept getting into more desperate positions of some necessary risks to bring things back under control. Unfortunately for him none of those risks paid off, and he ended up conceding. Another very fun and interesting game!
Round 4: Max with Arsenal
Another familiar and friendly face, and yet another very tough opponent - the computer match up was not making my life easy this tournament! My normal rule in this deck is: no deed = use Travis. I didn't get any deeds in my opening hand, but I did get a Turtles Guard, and I don't remember what else but at least a few strong shootout actions. I saw his home and expected serious aggression, early and often. I figured I'd keep the starting hand and keep the ability to be very strong in shootouts turn 1.
Indeed there were shootouts, early and often, but mostly initiated by me. And despite Hydro-Puncher constantly punching my Turtle in the face, I was doing very well, taking out a key dude or two of his, and it was looking like he might be forced into a quick loss by day 2 or so. What I thought might be his last shootout ended very unexpectedly: his couple of stud drew him into a legal 5oak, and my 10 cards in hand + 3 redraw only saw the option of a cheatin 4ofaK or a legal 3oaK (I took the rank 8). The combination of cheatin punishment (Ricochet I think) plus taking 2 casualties without being able to Turtles Guard really really hurt. My influence is not high to begin with, and now there were 2 CPs on his side and I had a Cooke's Nightcap. This meant I had to fight over my deed, and while I got another Turtles Guard, he got another Hydropuncher, and after a pinned down on my 2 influence Suitcase (who also had a now useless and dead Pedro!) meant game over for me.
I believe during that final shootout he could have ran home at one point and won, but he felt that was dirty and stuck around for another round of shootout to properly gun my folks down. If that isn't the testament of a true Doomtown player, then I don't know what is! I most certainly would have conceded had I somehow killed all his dudes in that shootout, but luckily (unluckily?) for me I didn't need to. This was the first game of mine that ended more than 5 minutes before time (we finished at the 20-ish minute mark), and I thanked Max for killing me early so we could both get some food!
Round 5: Phillip with Smith and Robards
A battle of the giant army of studs against each other. Chuan "Jen" Qí + Yagn's Mechanical Skeleton, along with other shenanigans like Luke, the Errand Boy + Bio-Charged Neutralizer and Nicholas Kramer meant even though I got my economy going strong early, and got an early Mariel, I could kick out a huge non-Yagns stud and he still had plenty of stud bullets to fight.
Again, I was aggressive early, and the whole game felt like he was constantly running or maneuvering away to try and avoid Mariel. I think a testament to my aggression was that he started POST-A-TRON, and I don't think he used the ability at all. A couple of Kidnappins, along with calling out some of his booted dudes kept the pressure on, and he was slowing losing more dudes than me. The few dudes I was able to see in hand had zero influence, so I wasn't always able to use Mariel, but I was often enough to keep in a mostly dominant position. Despite feeling like I had the advantage in most shootouts, it was a lot of back and forth and didn't feel like I was progressing very quickly.
He played it very well, putting out deeds and spreading things out. Unfortunately my lack of influence dudes, other than the early Mariel, was also one of the reasons he ended up winning at time. That's one part of the game I really hate - once time is called, it turns into a whole other game that I'm not a fan of (a necessary evil, however). Trying to quickly count some influence+CP totals, I mostly eye-balled it, and while I figured he was ahead about 3-4 points, I figured if I could run a kidnappin on his Jen, who was a 3 influence 1CP (from his home on her Yagns) dude sitting on my Cookes Nightcap, it should be enough to win, since that would take away a massive 6 points from him. He did not oppose, likely knowing he might lose even more influence in the process. I had a couple of deeds in hand, but instead of dropping any after that, my final action was to bring a solo Sarah Meoquanee into the town square to start a fight and maybe take out another influence dude, and also maybe stop him from going to my Cookes. Time was called after a brief shootout where I didn't kill any of his dudes and lost Sarah (not a big deal for me, no influence on her). Turns out he was at 7 (5inf +2CP) and I was at 6 influence 0 control. Very well played by Phillip, and I was happy to see some new blood get into the top 8!
Overal 3-2, top of faction, with one very solid loss and the other extremely close, made me pretty happy with this deck, and extremely grateful at having 5 very solidly fun and interesting games. My biggest regret was that so many came so close to time. I'm not sure if it was due to some slower play by my opponents, perhaps due to the fact that I was running a new home + a new legend + a new, mostly unknown dude in Suitcase (many opponents had quite a bit of new reading material) - or if it was just because of evenly matched decks. Perhaps some of both, but I need more experience with this deck, and generally with this home to be able to say for sure. Regardless, it was a great day of Doomtown and I am happy with how everything turned out , with one exception: the fact that I screwed up 2 of my important cards! It very well may have not affected things much, as even though a pull of 10 is very hard with this deck, I was still able to use Spirit Dance a few times, which in most cases was very helpful. So it wasn't in line with what the deck was about, but still ended up helping. Either way, no regrets, only awesome times Doomtowning!
|Aug 13, 2019 jordan caldwell|
|Aug 13, 2019 Prodigy|