I continue my streak of Top 8s, only to get immediately bounced from the event. Was kind of a weird tournament all around TBH. I had played a Robo Regulators deck for Harlath in a previous event, but I was very unhappy with the start. It felt quite slow with only one Mad Scientist to set up your gadgets, and I just generally felt it wasn't doing everything it could do. I wanted to try to maximize my chances of doing well also, so I wanted to play something I had played before. I decided to make a few adjustments, and retry it.
Round 1: I get paired with David Hammond who is playing Desolation Row, but we're never able to connect, and he concedes to me. (1-0)
Round 2: I get paired with Nathan Wood who is playing Abram's Crusaders with Ketchum. I should have taken notes, because I have forgotten this game. It feels like many moons ago. (2-0)
Round 3: I get paired with Ryan Tew, who is playing the HoMF/Grimme/Amazing Grace DMH deck. I play a Kidnappin' every turn I draw one, but he doesn't oppose and plays Hired Guns to replay the guy who dies. With a pretty loose structure winning every lowball, and no upkeep (no shooter required!), he has the money to undo my job whenever I draw it. After about an hour he plays 8 influence on the last turn and we go to time procedures. I'm on 9 Influence and 5 CPs, but he's on 15(!!) Influence, 2 CPs. He is closer to victory at only 7 away, and he wins at time! This game led me to at least two conclusions: one, Hired Guns isn't just "good", it's broken, and two, I'd really like it if "closest to victory" and "CPs" switch places. At certain levels of influence "closest to victory" is just "highest influence", and I'm not convinced that should be a tiebreaker so high up the list since it's so easy to just play it and ignore the game state. Maybe I'm just salty. (2-1)
Round 4: I play against Jevon Heath, who is playing Desolation Row. This game has some good back and forth, but eventually my Decimator Arrays and back to back It's Not What You Know... carry me through. (3-1)
Round 5: I play against Joe James, who is playing Law Dogs w/ Lacy O'Malley. The game is HERE. I'm sure I make MANY play mistakes, as playing against Prodigy always makes me nervous (him and Doomdog man, so accomplished!). In the end, he never cheats in lowball, and I don't win fast enough before his PTPT get online, so I have to match every shootout round with a CtC. In the end, I run out of them and lose. Of note, there's little chance I fight on the last turn if time isn't about to be up. Prodigy is nowhere near threatening to win off CPs, and I can win shootouts when I have CtC, I just have to wait for them. In this scenario, I'm the one stalling out the game (sorta? neither of us can win), but it does feel like the second game of the event I lose to "the clock". Prodigy has no intention of continuing the event, so after showing the win he scoops. (4-1?)
Top 8: I play against Stephen Hood, who is playing Desolation Row. When I teach new players to play against Desolation Row, I tell them not to fight for as long as possible. This isn't always the literal "best" strategy, but it does prevent them from opposing a job that they both seem to inherently REALLY want to oppose, and which fundamentally only gives 3 GR. Anyway, so then I play Nickel Night Inn to threaten both Florentino and Allie, boot out Florentino, and then get in a shootout at it with Jen with a Yagns, Aunt Lou and a Bobo against a Pearl Handled Marion and a Willa. I tell myself even if he has the Sun In Yer Eyes (I see one in his discard, two in his top 10?), I'll be shooting at the same bullets as him. So he plays the SIYE, he shows me a cheating 5 I can't punish and I show a Full House instead of my own cheating 5 I am afraid to show (I wonder if I should cheat more often). I decide to ace Bobo, and discard Jen with the Yagns. I think to myself that I will be able to recover better without the upkeep, even though it's 2 INF instead of Aunt Lou's 1. So then he plays a Bloody Star on Marion, runs the job, and plays a Whately Estate to get to exactly 5 CPs and I lose on turn 1. (4-2?)
7s are the worst value in the deck. Maybe I should play 8s instead for Force Field. Need Kidnappin' though, and 8s don't have great cheating resolutions to replace INWYK so Kidnappin' can be the new off value.
In some games I wish I had more cheating res, and in others it was 100% dead. Not sure how to resolve the issue.
The start is insane, but without Henry it feels like the probability of a turn 1 Maggie goes down a fair bit. In addition, the difference between a turn 1 with a Decimator Array and a turn 1 without it is INSANE. It's hard to exaggerate how good it is to play a turn 1 Decimator Array on Jen. For those two reasons, I've been thinking about replacing Maggie with either Gina or Travis. I think Gina would be better specifically for getting a good hand with DA, but Travis takes the home better. I'd probably then deck Maggie off-value. Alternatively, I'd play Lacy O'Malley and cut Maggie altogether. I think this might actually be good, because as you play out your CtCs, sometimes a few of the dudes clog your hand a bit, and it would be nice to cycle back around to CtCs and DAs faster. Might also make up for not being able to get back Yagn's.
If I were to play this deck tomorrow, I would cut Maggie for Travis, play Lacy O'Malley, and see how it felt. I feel pretty strongly that this is correct at least to try, because of how strong DA and CtC are, and how different the games are when you draw them vs. when they all go by in lowball (and you don't cycle back through in time).
The sixes are a fair bit different than previous, with Lucky Sky Borne and Deadwood Dick this time around. These are both 100% correct, and the ones I played last time were garbo.
I included County Courthouse because I felt like I didn't have enough kill jobs even last event, but honestly it's pretty hard to use against someone who can fight at all, and only feels good against people who literally will not fight unless dragged out. If you don't commit strongly to the job, they oppose, kill your dudes and run home. If you overcommit and drag someone out, you have very little to fight with afterward. It's 0 CPs, 4 cost and 1 production mean as much as I'm loathe to cut it from a theoretically sense, I think you probably should cut it and it's bad. Because of this I've considered playing a few Curse of Failure in addition to Kidnappin', for maybe 6 or 8 total jobs, but not sure the structure supports it, and would have to figure out how to make that work.
A very large percentage of Outlaw players play Desolation Row, and that hints to me that there is poor internal balance among Outlaw homes.
I'm probably done playing this archetype now until/unless the meta shifts DRAMATICALLY. In my opinion the meta is largely very fast decks (e.g. Desolation Row), and decks that AFK for 65 of the 75 minutes, and then drop Rank 11 on you every round until you die or win at time (e.g. HoMF DMH). I think this deck would be very good against some sort of midrange strategy as it is such a thing also, but I'm not sure there's another deck like that in the meta. The deck feels strong at the wrong part of the game, and has either died to early aggression, or is about to be locked out by infinite DMHs. That isn't to say it can't win games (or that someone couldn't have won this event with it if they were better than I am), that is to say it doesn't give you the best chance to win, and is a poor meta choice IMO. I think it generally makes CPs (at least in its current form) too slowly, and I would try to figure out how to make them faster. There's too many decks that don't play deeds, and you don't play your own fast enough, you need to fight over some stuff which in the meta doesn't exist enough.
Good luck in your future games!
|Mar 23, 2021 DoomDog|
|Mar 23, 2021 LastWalter|
|Mar 23, 2021 Neramoor|