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Conquest board game project -- help me create decks!


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#1
Skaak

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Current drafts

 

(See "About this project" section below for context.)

 

I am currently working on completing the core decks (can't start on secondary ones until I know approximately which cards are off-limits).

  • Captain Cato Sicarius: 1st draft
  • Colonel Straken: unstarted
  • Nazdreg: unstarted
  • Zarathur, High Sorcerer: unstarted
  • Packmaster Kith: unstarted
  • Eldorath Starbane: unstarted
  • Commander Shadowsun: unstarted
  • "Old One Eye": 1st draft
  • Anraykyr the Traveller: unstarted

 

About this project

 

I got sick of my Conquest collection gathering dust, so I decided to convert it into a board game by constructing a large number of decks and stashing them in a single Conquest core box.

This is not a new idea, but I didn't love any of the prior art:

  • 28 50-card decks: lopsidedly high cost curves across the board means the command phase is barely going to matter (and will encourage snowballing at planet one with an elite train)
  • 27 40-card decks: I don't want to sacrifice the core rules of Conquest just to make a ludicrous number of decks

So I'm working on my own approach! My plan is to have 18 decks built simultaneously:

  • 9 "core" decks (7 core set warlords + Old One Eye + Anraykyr): these will always be built, so cards in them are not available for any other decks, and will represent a pretty "standard" Conquest experience for each faction that can compete very evenly across the board (preferably no rock-paper-scissors matchups against other core decks)
  • 9 "secondary" decks (1 per faction, selected from any preferred non-core warlord): I'd like to make a deck for every warlord, but they can share cards within the faction because only one will ever be built at once. Because the non-core warlords are often focused on specific things (traits, keywords, etc.) these will tend to be more specialized within their faction, and rock-paper-scissors matchups are acceptable (e.g. any event-heavy deck vs. Jain Zar is pretty inescapable)

My priorities for decks are:

  • High consistency: all decks should consistently draw into the cards they need to accomplish their core strategy, which means there won't be much card overlap between core and secondary decks
  • Mediocre efficiency: enough command-focused units to make the command phase matter, but not enough to cause some decks to rocket ahead of others due to their efficiency (no tournament-quality Kith, please). This means using cards that would never see tournament play due to their poor efficiency; intentionally spreading out, not using, or placing in struggling decks the really powerful cards like Klaivex; and trending towards higher cost curves.
  • Mono-faction: wherever possible, decks need to use only in-faction and neutral cards (warlords like Nahumekh, Gorzod, and Command Starblaze will be very difficult to construct because they'll ideally need to be able to co-exist with any of the other secondary decks)
  • Include neutrals (where necessary): use neutrals sparingly, but include where they'll do the most good. Both prior approaches above avoid Rogue Trader, Void Pirate, and Promotion like the plague, which doesn't make sense to me. These are central Conquest cards, and while they necessarily must be used sparingly (only 6x each available) I'm fully interested in seeing them used where they'll even out the overall balance
  • No Death World by default: all decks will require 3x cores and 1x all expansions except Death World. I own a full collection, but a lot of people do not own Death World and I would love to allow them to benefit from this project. I fully encourage Death World variants of decks, though! I'll be listing substitutions for Death World owners in the description below the decklist (and obviously Death World warlords can pull from the full pool). Maybe this will restrict the card pool too much to be able to make decent decks for all warlords; but we'll see!

I need your help! I am currently plugging away at "core" warlord decks, but would love to have other folks contribute (both decks from scratch or criticism/suggested changes for my decks)! Otherwise I'm going to be at this for a long while...


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#2
Stefan2581

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How many core sets do you own ?



#3
Skaak

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How many core sets do you own ?

 

Decks for this project will assume 3x core and 1x of all expansions (excluding Death World).



#4
Skyknight

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Nice project Skaak! I did something slightly similar a few months ago and got 21 decks with different warlords, all ready and colour-sleaved, with only two of those slightly suboptimal from my point of view (due to running out of key cards - I refrain from playing with proxies myself.)

 

I may be able to help you out with suggestions, as all were made using the CGDB deck builder and so they are still there. But they will need adjustment to fit your priority-criteria above. I'll get back to you with some suggestions as soon as I can :)



#5
Skaak

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Nice project Skaak! I did something slightly similar a few months ago and got 21 decks with different warlords, all ready and colour-sleaved, with only two of those slightly suboptimal from my point of view (due to running out of key cards - I refrain from playing with proxies myself.)

 

Awesome! More prior art is better prior art, because I am all about stealing ideas getting inspiration from external sources. Do you have the links to the decks you built? Finding decks in CGDB is...not very easy. :unsure:



#6
Stefan2581

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I currently have two new players (they bought all the sets recently).

How do you think we should start the game ?
Gradually allowing Cycles 1 to 3 ?

Or go right ahead and build with the whole cardpool ?



#7
Skyknight

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I currently have two new players (they bought all the sets recently).

How do you think we should start the game ?
Gradually allowing Cycles 1 to 3 ?

Or go right ahead and build with the whole cardpool ?

I would go right ahead with the whole cardpool. Don't give them the optimal solutions to each factions though; the learning and xp-gaining comes gradually as they try out different methods and approaches; instead, make small suggestions based on observations after playing, both in respect to their deck choices and gameplay choices.

Wonderful with the two new players by the way. Well done indeed :D

 

 

Awesome! More prior art is better prior art, because I am all about stealing ideas getting inspiration from external sources. Do you have the links to the decks you built? Finding decks in CGDB is...not very easy. :unsure:

Well, I didn't post them as I didn't want my regular opponents to discover my strategies behind them too soon, but I can post them now I suppose, no problem.

The thing is I have 9x core sets, 2x of each deluxe and 2x (sometimes more) of each cycle warpack (yeah hardcore Conquest fan I guess), so that's how I was able to build so many different decks all at once and still keep them competitive, yet creative - some of them fields unusual ally-choices to keep them interesting as well as holding a surprise or two.

 

I'll post the ones from your 'core' choices in a moment then, but they are not adherent to your priorities as they are, so you will have to draw what inspiration you can from them and make changes as you see fit.

 

 

Edit: Done, they're posted. The Kith setup was intended for a particular player with very low confidence. It's as strong as I could make it and as such it probably won't be of much use to you. Out of all the 21 different decks, Anrakyr and Straken were the two decks made from left-over cards by the way. Anrakyr in particular is rather weak; of the three Necron warlords he is my least favorite, mostly because he is somewhat vanilla compared to the other two, so the others got more love back then :)


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#8
Skaak

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I currently have two new players (they bought all the sets recently).

How do you think we should start the game ?
Gradually allowing Cycles 1 to 3 ?

Or go right ahead and build with the whole cardpool ?

 

I'll second Skyknight's recommendation of letting them start with the whole set. My advice would be to tell them to ignore everything except the warlords, find a warlord who resonates with them for whatever reason, then limit themselves to thinking about that particular faction's cards (and the non-loyal cards in the allying factions). I think it's more important to limit information overload by focusing on a specific faction than by limiting the overall card pool, because the core warlords may or may not resonate with them at all (I know I didn't really get into the game in a serious way until the Tyranids came out because I simply didn't much like the other warlords/factions).

 

This is a big reason I'm trying to have a deck for every warlord in this project, actually (even though most of them won't be built simultaneously). Sometimes a particular warlord will really resonate with a particular person, and I'd hate to have them ditch the game simply because I don't have a deck they can play. Sure, I may not like Urien Rakarth much, but if that's the warlord that convinces a friend to play Conquest with me then by all means I want to have a deck I can throw together for him.



#9
Skaak

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I'll post the ones from your 'core' choices in a moment then, but they are not adherent to your priorities as they are, so you will have to draw what inspiration you can from them and make changes as you see fit.
 
Thanks! I'll take a look and see what inspires me. If nothing else, it's nice to have a general template for "something that works" for a particular warlord, because there's a bunch of warlords I've never had the chance to play myself.


#10
Skyknight

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You're very welcome. Let me know if there's any other warlords you'd like to see - the rest from the assembled line I did are for the most part much more fun and probably stronger too. I'll be happy to post which ever warlord you'd like.



#11
Skyknight

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... My advice would be to tell them to ignore everything except the warlords, find a warlord who resonates with them for whatever reason, then limit themselves to thinking about that particular faction's cards (and the non-loyal cards in the allying factions). I think it's more important to limit information overload by focusing on a specific faction than by limiting the overall card pool, because the core warlords may or may not resonate with them at all (I know I didn't really get into the game in a serious way until the Tyranids came out because I simply didn't much like the other warlords/factions).

 

...

This is an excellent advice. One of the most important elements for new players is usually to play a warlord they think looks fun/interesting and what Skaak says about the perils regarding information overload is very true as well.

 

Also Stefan, I forgot to add, I'd advice that you don't necessarily play your best/optimal until your opponent (the new player) can take it, so to speak. I.e. when they have a comprehensive overview of the cardpool and reasonable experience level with gameplay and the more stronger setups. Essentially this means much further down the line. It does not, however, mean that you should lose on purpose, certainly not, but don't always make the optimal move. You're already going to be miles ahead of any new player due to (presumably) a lot of games under your belt and general playing experience, so if you stomp them all the time you will most likely kill the fun for them.

Play your best when they are ready :)