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Critique this Speeder Deck (Please)

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#1
octorfunk

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So I've been playing with this Speeder deck for a while, and it's working very well.  I think it's actually pretty good, but please poke holes in it and feel free to suggest weaknesses/improvements.

 

2X Preparation for Battle

2X Attack Pattern Delta

2X Hoth Operations

Mission Briefing

The Rebel Fleet

The Defense of Yavin 4

Draw Their Fire

 

There are tons of low-cost speeders, and not only does Hoth Operations give you an edge point for every speeder, but Attack Pattern Delta lets you draw and put a 2-cost unit into play once per turn.  This easily lets me get 4-6 Speeder units on the board very quickly, which gives me an instant Edge advantage, not to mention the effects of the Speeders themselves.

 

Add other Rebel units like Home One and Admiral Ackbar in there, and it just gets better.

 

I have this deck very difficult to slow down, and the sheer number of Speeders make it easy to use them and lose them without a second thought.

 

It's very typical to get a bunch of Speeders out there, bide my time, then destroy all 3 objectives in 1 or 2 turns.

 

So what am I missing?

 

 



#2
Thaliak

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With the bonus from Hoth Operations and several three-pip edge cards, this deck can have strong edge. However, most of the units lack the strike economy to take advantage of their first strike capability. When the speeders strike, they do one or two damage to a unit and one or two damage to an objective. If the Dark Side can deploy units who can deal with several enemies at once, such as Emperor Palpatine, Prince Xizor or even Weequay Elite, the Light Side may find itself losing units before it can take advantage of them. That might be fine if those units are coming out for free, but Attack Pattern Delta won't always be on board, and when it is, it won't always produce.

 

Speaking of Attack Pattern Delta, an aggressive deck will have little trouble taking it off the board against a deck that has no three-gun units and only six units with tactics: the four AAC-1 Speeder Tanks, who have no bombs unless their objective is out; Mon Mothma, who costs three and has no bombs; and the star, Ackbar, who costs three resources and needs to win edge to have any icons but can at least deal with two units. Heat of Battle, the Heavy Blaster Emplacement, and Rebel Assault can help key objectives stay in play by controlling the opponent's board, but the Dark Side has ways to pump out expensive units, including the elite objectives The Spice Trade and Technological Terror, as well as Deploy the Fleet and Masterful Manipulation, which is effectively elite because it leaves play at the end of the Light Side's turn. If the Dark Side doesn't have a resource advantage, they might be able to overwhelm the speeders with low-cost, high-health units that beer black bombs, such as Energy Spider and Berserk Hunter.

 

If the speeders face a more defensive Dark Side, they might be able to bide their time and build an overwhelming board. However, that leaves the deck vulnerable to board wipes, such as Moment of Triumph and Force Storm. Because most speeders have low heath, they also are easy prey for Heat of Battle or Core Vader's reaction, which can trigger on both turns if the Dark Side's deck is built to take advantage of it.

The deck also looks like it might be prone to dead draws. Three of the sets–the two copies of Preparation for Battle and Mission Briefing–have no bomb, and four of the others–Attack Pattern Delta and Hoth Operations–have a high concentration of unique units. Thus, the Light Side may find itself in a position where it needs a few bombs to close the game but only draws support units or ones it can't play. Preparation for Battle can help, but only if it is out and only toward the end of the game, when the Dark Side player is close to victory. With enough bombs and board presence, the Dark Side might sprinkle damage across three objectives, then blow them up in one turn to push the dial from 6 to 12 so Preparation for Battle never turns on

It's still a decent deck. I played something similar in my first regional, and I remember reading an article in which a high-ranking player said he always considered whether his decks could withstand speeder swarms; he had a friend who played them constantly, and sometimes they work extremely well. However, the Light Side has access to decks that combine equally strong high rolls with more consistent performance thanks to units that have a higher health, better strike economy, and the pips to contest the Force.

 

From your post, I gather you've had a different experience. What sort of decks do you play against, and what cards do you have access to? That might help people provide useful suggestions for improving the deck.

 

 


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#3
octorfunk

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Thanks for the quick and thorough feedback!

 

I only have one opponent, so my experience is (very) limited.  I try to playtest my decks as much as possible against myself, but even that can be limited.

 

It's funny that you mention dead draws, because one of the reasons I like this deck is for it's consistency.  And by consistent, I probably mean boring.  Of the 50 cards, 14 are speeders, 6 are fighters, and then there's Home One.  That's almost 50% speeders/fighters, not too mention a couple other character units/enhancements.  I guess my point is that it would be exceedingly rare to go more than a single hand without drawing a speeder/fighter, and usually multiple.

 

And the real magic seems to happen when you through in the objective effects.

*Hoth Operations: Each speeder gains edge (1)

* Attack Pattern Delta: Put the top card of your deck into play if it is a vehicle with cost 2 or lower

* Preparation for Battle: Shielded units can't be damaged while the Death Star dial is 4 or lower; shielded units gain blast damage while the Death Star dial is 8 or higher

 

With 2 of each of those objectives in the deck, I have yet to not draw least one of them.  And if I flop 2 Hoth Operations, now each speeder adds 2 to the edge battle.  Same with Attack Pattern Delta; flop 2 and now I can potentially put a speeder/fighter into place 2X per turn.

 

I like the flexibility that this allows me.  For example, the last time I played my human opponent, I drew Prep for Battle and Hoth Operations.  I drew a couple of the speeder tanks early, which allowed me to shield my other speeders, making them invulnerable.  Even though their damage output isn't very high, I still got to place damage on all 3 objectives at no risk to myself (shielded units are invulnerable). 

 

By the time my opponent got the dial over 4, I already had 2-3 damage on each objective, forcing him to defend (potentially) in up to 3 engagements every turn.  With Hoth Operations on the table, I entered every edge battle with a 2-4pt advantage because of the speeders I had in play, which means:
a) The DS defender had to go first in the edge battle

B) I could drain all the DS defenders cards in the 1st or 2nd edge battle, knowing I would win the 3rd edge battle by default with my speeder edge

 

There was also a Rebel Assault to contend with, not to mention my favorite vehicle/enhancement combination, Rogue 3 + Astromech Droid (Rogue 3 does 2 blast damage and gains unit/blast damage for each enhancement; Astromech droid adds unit/blast damage, making this 3 cost/health speeder do a whopping 4 objective damage & 2 unit damage guaranteed). 

 

He plays a pretty stout Scum deck, but in the end it was just overwhelming.  

 

I'm sure if I actually got the chance to play in a tournament or other high-level event someone would destroy me somehow, I've just always wondered if my deck could come close.

 

Full disclosure, I'm playing with just the Core & Hoth sets, so this isn't my chosen deck out of the entire set.



#4
jc1138

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Well, to start I would drop Mission Briefing and Draw their Fire and add 2x Inhospitable Deployments, a set from the last cycle.  While not speeder-specific, this would increase your edge count and improve your resources, with the objective reducing the cost of your speeders and troopers.

 

If you are limited to only the Core + Hoth cycle, you could sub-out Mission Briefing for another Defense of Yavin 4, which would add another Rebel Assault, resource, ramp potential, and more bombs.  This would change your total edge count from 81 to 79, so slightly lower.  Mission Briefing is a pretty rough objective, with no resource or bombs, but at least it has a nice ability on the objective (I like it when objectives cannot be turned off by damage).


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#5
Thaliak

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I may be overestimating the chance of dead draws based on my experience with Hoth decks that include The Hoth Gambit and Sensors are Placed, two thematically-strong but overly-defensive sets.

I forgot about the defensive benefits of Preparation for Battle. It's definitely nice when you have shields.

An Astromech-enhanced Rogue 3 is certainly deadly! I pity your friend.

 

I think you might have more trouble against a Sith Control deck that can protect Palpatine and Vader from Rebel Assault and Heat of Battle with Royal Guards. If you overextend, the speeders might also struggle with a Sith/Navy deck that combines Palpatine with heavy-hitters like Devastator to play both defense and offense. Sith decks tend to be better at holding the Force than Scum, so they'll give you less time to build.

 

While this game rewards skill, tournaments can be unpredictable. I've lost games to less experienced players because they pull combos I'm not used to and beat more experienced and generally stronger players with cards they rarely see. Having said that, I think a Speeder swarm would struggle against decks designed to beat Ewoks, which have their own version of Attack Pattern Delta, an objective that keeps their units alive, a shaman who raises zombies, and scouts who know secret paths into every enemy base. These decks frequently win on turn two or three.

 



#6
Muddervader

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Aff: Jedi
2x A Hero's Resolve (Escape from Hoth 64-1)
2x Attack Pattern Delta (The Battle of Hoth 59-1)
1x Echo Base Defense (The Desolation of Hoth 39-1)
2x Hoth Operations (The Desolation of Hoth 38-1)
2x Inhospitable Deployments (Trust in the Force 281-1)
1x The Secret at Shantipole (Attack Run 156-1)

#7
octorfunk

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Thanks again for all the feedback.  I think I will sub out Mission Briefing.  Initially I threw it in there when I was putting the Speeder deck together, and the deck worked so well that I never really looked at what might be under-performing.  But now that I take out Mission Briefing and look at each card, most of them end up as Edge battle fodder anyway.

 

I have had the most success against my Speeder deck with a tactics-heavy Sith deck, but even then it's still pretty difficult to withstand all that damage.



#8
AdOzzel

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I always have 12 decks put together at all times.  When I want to build a new one, I just pull an old one apart,  Since I have started playing I have always kept two decks together:  Walkers and Speeders.

 

My speeder decks always changes.  Here is the my latest build:

 

Hoth Ops x2

Inhospitable Deployments x2

Preparation for Battle x2

APD x2

A Hero's Resolve x2

 

I use the Jedi affiliation, since Resolve is in there.  Before Inhospitable was released, I ran 2 sparks.  Between APD and Spark, you possible have many chances to put something into play for free (plus, it goes along with the Jedi affiliation.)    This build has decent edge (92 pips) and decent shielding.  Resources could be better but the units are fairly cheap, plus you have chances to APD/Spark units into play.  I like your build a lot.  As mentioned previously by other members, I would suggest removing Mission Briefing and DTF, and adding either Inhospitable Deployments and/or Spark. Good luck! 


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#9
octorfunk

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I removed Mission Briefing and tested it against my current Sith deck.

 

I pulled Palpatine and the Devastator early and it was all over.  It was close towards the end, but I don't know how much the Speeders actually had to do with the loss.  If you lose one key edge battle with Palpatine, he can focus your entire force or most of your resources, effectively crippling you turn after turn.  Add to that the Devastator's ability to single-handedly destroy an objective every turn (and tick up the DS dial by spending a resource).

 

The main weakness I see with this deck is the lack of event cards to reach units not currently in the engagement.  If the DS keeps a couple units back, there's not much I can do, whereas my Sith deck has plenty of events that can target enemy units who aren't currently in the engagement.

 

All that being said, getting the Palpatine/Devastator combo within my first 2 turns was pretty fortunate, and with only one of each of those in my deck, how often is that going to happen, right?



#10
jc1138

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The dark side in general has many more ways to target and remove units outside of conflicts than the light side.



#11
octorfunk

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I am finding after more play-testing that the problem with the Speeder deck is not getting enough damage on the board to capitalize.  It doesn't always happen, but it can be frustrating to go unopposed on a couple engagements with a board full of units and only walk away with 1-2 damage.  That being said, if I can maintain the force, it's pretty hard for the DS to play defense against that many units for 8-9 turns, it just becomes overwhelming.

 

At this point I only have a single core set and a single Hoth set, so doubling up isn't really an option.  I don't do tournaments, so I'm most likely not going to purchase multiples just to beat my neighbor!  

 

Thanks to everyone for all the input, I'm fairly new to the game, so I had no idea there were other Hoth sets that are not in the Hoth cycle, I'll have to check those out.


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#12
octorfunk

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Ok so based on the advice from this thread I purchased The Hoth Gambit & Inhospitable Deployments over the weekend.  All I can say is wow.  My deck now consists of:

 

2X The Hoth Gambit

2X Inhospitable Deployments

2X Attack Pattern Delta

2X Hoth Operations

1X Prepare for Battle

1X Evacuation Procedure

 

Free speeders, reduced cost speeders, +1 edge for every speeder, +1 towards the force struggle for every objective, etc.

 

I've never fielded so many units so fast.  

 

The only way I've been able to beat it is with overwhelming Imperial Navy aggression.  The objective effects are almost impossible to overcome, they must be removed from play for the DS to have a chance.  And it has to be done quickly, this Speeder deck can easily take out 2 objectives in a single turn.

 

Even a Sith control deck has serious issues competing, you just can't focus everything.  It's routine for me to have 6-8 units in play at once, with full control of the Force Struggle and edge to spare.

 

Any thoughts?


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#13
RoyalAegis

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I think given your cardpool your deck is pretty solid. You're a bit low on the resource curve but that's offset by the low cost curve of your deck. My current-state recommendation is that I'd double up on Prep for Battle instead of x1 of that and Evacuation Procedures. I think you'll enjoy the extra shielding and tactics icons you get from the Speeders (and extra Speeders gives you more of a chance of hitting gold with Attack Pattern Delta).

 

You're right in that Sith Control is a bad matchup against vehicle decks. Sith Control derives a lot of value from taking out high-cost, high priority units and it often has trouble holding down a large LS board of low-cost units. Unless you're dealing with board wipes (i.e. Moment of Triumph or Force Storm) the only big way to fight back is to lock everything out with tactics and that can be easier said than done. 

 

Has Hoth Gambit been working well for you? The objective is very nice but it seems like the units are going against the aggressiveness that your deck is striving for. If you do get access to more Hoth cards in the future, I'd recommend either two copies of Hero's Resolve or 1 copy each of Frozen Refuge and Echo Base Defense.