Pete wrote:Second Sunday works for me, good stuff.
I had a gander at the various factions last night. Lannister looks aggravating with lots of hand demolishing and general denial.
Greyjoy looks rushy. I might plump for them in the first blush. The colour of Martel appeals, but it also looks to be playing the long game.
I was playing a Martell deck with Banner of the Watch last night, and my soft spot for the Targaryen loyalist Sand Snakes means they're likely to be a popular one for me, along with the Lannisters and Greyjoys. The colouration and art on the Greyjoy cards is actually a joy to behold, but there's so much good stuff in the set. I love Blood Orange Grove, Targaryen Loyalist, Illyrio's estate, Doran's game, Dornish Paramore, We do not sow, there's just so much art that is awesome. My favourite piece is Fire and Blood though.
I feel like out of a single core, Baratheon, Night's watch and Targaryen look a bit weaker than the other factions due to high reliance on specific cards. The core set has almost no multiples, so trying to find a lynchpin of your deck like Melisandre, The Wall, John Snow and Daenerys is very hard. In contrast the other factions aren't so worried about finding specific cards (or in the case of the Lannisters and Greyjoys, have so many good ones it kind of doesn't matter).
I feel like you can't go wrong with Lannisters as a main or a banner. So much extra gold generation, and Casterley Rock and Lannisport provide extra intrigue and draw to maximise card advantage. Unlike in netrunner, drawing cards is much more difficult, so this is a strong strategy. Jaime and Tyrion are not loyal, and so you can splash some of their better characters and gold generation without worrying too much. The Tyrells are just really solid across the board, and The Bear and The Maiden Fair looks like a bonkers card when it's so hard to draw through this kind of effect. I got massive draw advantage using Olenna and The Mander. I'm not a massive fan of the Starks (though thematically they're great, with almost no intrigue icons, true to the books in terms of how shit they are at The Only Game that Matters), but I did kill 4 characters of my opponent in 1 turn using a 2 claim plot, winter is coming and discarding Ice, so there are some paths available. Stealth is massive, and the Greyjoys look really effective. Lordsport Shipwright is just annoying as fuck, and their in built abilities to mess with key locations seem strong to me at least. The night's watch can deal with stealth well as long as they can find Benjen and other Rangers, so that's a solution to Greyjoy stealth rush (part of the reason I bannered them to my Martell deck). The Red Keep (Baratheon) might be the best card in the Core Set, and with multiple cores Baratheon looks very scary, because you can find Melisandre early and start to just fuck with your opponent's cards, which is highly frustrating.
I will say the neutral card selection looks amazing, and well thought out. I the netrunner core there are a lot of cards that were flat out garbage or very situational, particularly in the neutral card pool (looking at you, Access to GlobalSec). The neutral cards in Thrones look to try to offer players a chance to mitigate some of their weaknesses (little bird, noble lineage, Syrio's training) or give EVERYONE access to powerful effects like Varys, Wildfire Assault, draw and gold generation (Littlefinger, Roseroad etc), character mitigation in Tears of Lys/Milk of the Poppy.
Deck building wise I'm having fun. I have NO IDEA what needs to go in decks in terms of economy, number of characters etc. I'm avoiding netdecking because I personally believe these things are best learned on your own, at least at the start of a new game, so that you have a ground level understanding of what the game actually requires. I expect to be punished at the start, but end up with a better overall feel for the game. It took me ~6 months to work out these kind of fundamentals for netrunner and I don't expect it to be any easier here. Less so probably, because unlike in Netrunner, where you have the agency to click for cards and credits, or Conquest, where you can acquire resources based on predefined board state (allocating units to planatary resources which are a fundamental economy engine of the game), here you have neither option. Most of your money is generated via your plot deck, which is like having to build a critical deck within a deck with synergy with your actual card choices.