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The 2nd Edition Stark thread

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#1
IdeYoshiya

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It's time we talk House Stark. The popular thought on these boards seems to be that they are a lower-tier faction out of the Core Set, but that doesn't mean we can't discuss some early theory on what they do offer, whether as a primary or banner House.
 

One of House Stark's main shortcomings in this game is their relative lack of intrigue, and their not-so-subtle approach to strategy more broadly. Tears of Lys is a real danger for the Starks, and so I'll link this article for relevance.

Core Set Review: House Stark 

Looking through this review article, the trend I see is that favor is shown to those Stark cards that are...not tricksy per se, but the closest thing the faction offers as yet. Catelyn and Bran both provide good protection against subterfuge, while Sansa adds to the House's power from round to round, and Arya provides a much-needed source of stealth. These are all great utility cards, but I am not sure whether they will all find a place in the same deck as more cards are added to the game. Time will tell in that regard.

 

What follows is a deck I pulled together to get the ball rolling. It feel that the key to making a Stark deck work at this point lies is maximizing the advantage gained from Military claim. That being the case, I decided to use the additional-challenge-granting Olenna's Informant as a starting point, and see where the design would go from there.

Thorns in the Ice

 

Ned looked down on him. From on high, Loras Tyrell seemed almost as young as Robb. "No one doubts your valor, Ser Loras, but we are about justice here, and what you seek is vengeance."
George R.R. Martin, A Game of Thrones

 

Faction: House Stark
Agenda: Banner of the Rose
 
Plot Deck (7)
1x Building Orders
1x Jousting Contest 
1x Calling the Banners
2x A Storm of Swords
1x A Noble Cause
1x A Feast for Crows
 
Characters (34)
1x Arya Stark 
3x Bran Stark
3x Catelyn Stark
2x Eddard Stark 
3x Robb Stark
3x Sansa Stark
1x Summer
3x Tumblestone Knight
2x Winterfell Steward
3x Courtesan of the Rose
3x Margaery Tyrell
3x Olenna’s Informant 
2x Randyll Tarly
2x The Knight of Flowers
 
Attachments (9)
3x Ice
1x Heartsbane
2x Little Bird
3x Seal of the Hand
 
Events (6)
3x Winter Is Coming
3x Put to the Sword
 
Locations (11)
2x Gates of Winterfell
3x Heart Tree Grove
3x The Kingsroad
3x The Roseroad

The deck's strategy, it turns out, has little and less to do with the Informant. Instead it's all about making Margaery the Hand of the King in the North, and keeping her standing as often as possible so as to deter enemy aggression, meanwhile turning the small kids and supporting characters into credible threats during your challenges phase. I'd like to find room for Growing Strong, but I'm not sure if there are enough Tyrell characters here to make it worth it? I figure it'll require some testing both ways to figure that out.

EDIT: Removed 2x Arya and added 2x Gates of Winterfell. Also tweaked the plot deck around to improve the reserve a bit.

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#2
ingsve

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I'm not sure running without any card draw almost (except Bran when Summer is out) is a good idea. The deck is pretty aggro so it wants to end things quickly but no decks are really that rushy enough in the core set to consistently run without draw I think. At least consider Counting Coppers and I would still run at least 1 Gates of Winterfell even in a Banner deck.


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#3
IdeYoshiya

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That's a good idea. I actually had Gates of Winterfell at first, can't remember what I replaced it with. Ah well :P

#4
scantrell24

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Gates of Winterfell is a solid card, but only in Stark Fealty.

Any other agenda paired with the Stark faction card will lack draw. Does that render those combinations unusable? The jury is still out, but it's not looking good.

#5
IdeYoshiya

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I'll give it a shot. At least if I turn up a Tyrell card I know what I'm seeing next turn so I can handle my reserve better. The other possibility is weeding out (pun intended) the Tyrell material that is least essential to the strategy, thereby improving the odds of turning up Stark.

 

I don't think "The Bear and the Maiden Fair" is worth it given the cost of the card, but I have yet to play with it.



#6
Elufo

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I'm not sure running without any card draw almost (except Bran when Summer is out) is a good idea. The deck is pretty aggro so it wants to end things quickly but no decks are really that rushy enough in the core set to consistently run without draw I think. At least consider Counting Coppers and I would still run at least 1 Gates of Winterfell even in a Banner deck.

I agree, and the fact that Stark lacks on intrigue if you don't have the draw to try and "secure" your hand, against Lannister or Martell for example, your rush will be countered quickly. As for Gates of Winterfell, i feel it will only be a valid/solid choice for a fealty deck.

 

Again, i'm still looking for a solid way to build a Stark based deck but ... i can't find the balance i found in other decks.

Is Stark only valid for rush ??



#7
mnBroncos

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Trust me play stark with lannister
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#8
klaus

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Trust me play stark with lannister

 

That seems like an awful thing to do.

 

Guess i'm nedly.


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#9
chrsjxn

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Stark + Lannister is golden. Jaime + Vanguard of the North sucks to face on the defense. And you can run A Storm of Swords to use them multiple times...

 

Not to mention Tyrion, Widow's Wail, and Joffrey, if you want your murderous ways to actually help you win the game.

 

It is a slow, grindy deck, though. You basically just kill characters until they stop drawing any more.


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#10
IdeYoshiya

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That seems like an awful thing to do.

 

Guess i'm nedly.

I'm very much a Ned myself, contrary to what the above decklist might suggest. But I believe Stark and Lannister can definitely work together and still be thematic. Consider the SanSan fandom (for which I'm still waiting on a version of The Hound to build a deck around), and also HBO's take on Arya's time spent at Harrenhal - pretty much the only time we get to see a bit of Tywin's kind-er side. For book canon, Sansa is wed to Tyrion, and likes Joffrey until she realizes what a truly awful person he is...and yeaaaah that's pretty much it. I don't think Pycelle is on Ned's side at any point in the book.

At any rate, the Nedliest thing a Stark deck can do is lose...and I think the Core Set accomplishes that pretty well. :P


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#11
mnBroncos

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They also defeated mad king together and made greyjoy rebend the knee.
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#12
IdeYoshiya

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Well, and if we're thinking about other eras than specifically the period represented by the characters and such, there's no especial reason why the Lannisters can't side with the Starks. For that matter, the whole reason they're at each other's throats is because of Littlefinger, who outright tells Sansa towards the end of ASoS that he sometimes does things at random to keep people guessing. What if he'd gone about things differently?



#13
zeroisnine

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Arya and Bran+Summer are among the best reasons to play Stark imo.

Arya is just very efficient, and can be key in triggering Put to the Sword.

Going heavier on Summer means you can be more liberal with Bran's ability, which I think some people underrate. Insight on Bran... I think it's less about draw, and more about forcing the opponent to respect Power challenges. That said, draw is good.

I don't really like Hand of the King here, and in general for Stark. Grey Wind can't use it, Robb/Ned have stand effects already. I like it on Catelyn, but that's it.

I like stand effects with Margaery, but it seems more efficient to just run a Power Behind the Throne.


I like Milk for Stark, it helps in baiting out the early Confiscation (costing less than Seal) so you can let Ice stay in play for a little while to get more value out of it.

Moreso than any other faction, I feel like Littlefinger was meant to be played with the Starks.

Storm of Swords is interesting it has the military potential of a 2 claim plot, but without their drawbacks (1 challenge, low initiative). I kinda feel like Marched to the Wall is strictly better though. The additional gold is nice, the slightly lower initiative feels irrelevant, and you discard one, but I feel like that's more efficient then having to win two military challenges. Plus, I feel like there are random situations where it'll just wreck. Single character setups, or following up For The North turns where you've chewed through their cheap characters and it hits a big one.
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#14
Barnie25

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I have just constructed a Greyjoy/Stark deck that focusses on pure rush and kill. Adding stark gives an extra stealth in Aria, a boring but much needed two gold militairy bicon character, sansa for more power and an intrigue icon. I also added a single Eddard Stark to help defending challenges or getting dominance.



#15
mnBroncos

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Honestly a very strong thing going for stark right now is bara being so popular right now Ned and Robb are the best counters to their kneel and targeted kill for their key characters. Ice is quickly growing on me as maybe best card in core set. Without valar targeted kill is so strong.
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#16
Vibroknife

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I would have to agree with mnBroncos on the potency of Ice. Just played a game against Stark and even just the threat of Ice can make you over-commit or leave too much in reserve.  If you have a treachery though, that Stark player is going to be angry.



#17
zeroisnine

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Ice is quickly growing on me as maybe best card in core set. Without valar targeted kill is so strong.


I never got why people were so down on it. 57.5% is crazy.

#18
Barnie25

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Honestly a very strong thing going for stark right now is bara being so popular right now Ned and Robb are the best counters to their kneel and targeted kill for their key characters. Ice is quickly growing on me as maybe best card in core set. Without valar targeted kill is so strong.


You stated before that Stark Lannister was a strong list. What would a list like that look like? Are you playing Like Warm Rain and what is the divide between your 5,6,7 drops?

#19
mnBroncos

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You stated before that Stark Lannister was a strong list. What would a list like that look like? Are you playing Like Warm Rain and what is the divide between your 5,6,7 drops?

Deck Created with CardGameDB.com A Game of Thrones 2nd Edition Deckbuilder
 
 
Total Cards: (60)
 
Faction: 
 Stark
 
 
Agenda: (1)
1x Banner of the Lion (Core Set)
 
Plot: (7)
1x A Noble Cause (Core Set)
1x Calm Over Westeros (Core Set)
1x Filthy Accusations (Core Set)
1x Marched to the Wall (Core Set)
2x Sneak Attack (Core Set)
1x Confiscation (Core Set)
 
Character: (35)
3x Arya Stark (Core Set)
2x Bran Stark (Core Set)
1x Burned Men (Core Set)
2x Catelyn Stark (Core Set)
2x Direwolf Pup (Core Set)
2x Eddard Stark (Core Set)
1x Grey Wind (Core Set)
1x Joffrey Baratheon (Core Set)
3x Lannisport Merchant (Core Set)
1x Littlefinger (Core Set)
1x Rattleshirt’s Raiders (Core Set)
2x Robb Stark (Core Set)
1x Sansa Stark (Core Set)
2x Ser Jaime Lannister (Core Set)
1x Summer (Core Set)
1x The Tickler (Core Set)
3x Tumblestone Knight (Core Set)
3x Tyrion Lannister (Core Set)
3x Winterfell Steward (Core Set)
 
Attachment: (6)
3x Ice (Core Set)
2x Little Bird (Core Set)
1x Widow’s Wail (Core Set)
 
Event: (9)
3x For the North! (Core Set)
3x Put to the Sword (Core Set)
3x Winter Is Coming (Core Set)
 
Location: (10)
2x Gates of Winterfell (Core Set)
2x Heart Tree Grove (Core Set)
3x The Kingsroad (Core Set)
3x The Roseroad (Core Set)
 
this is my current list. not perfect yet though. 


#20
RobbyStark

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1 direwolf pup is 1 direwolf pup too many


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