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3rd Portland Regional/2nd Tacoma


I've been working on my own Cthulhu/Shub cultists-list.  Tell us more about why you played the cards you did, and the unseen combos!?

First off, thanks for posting your deck Joel.  I'll put up a proper tournament report complete with pictures and deck lists later this week.  Here are my initial, surface impressions of his deck:


I faced Joel in the final round and was impressed with both his deck and skill.  I had played Joel once before several months back and knew he had an excellent grasp of combos and character interactions, so I was definitely nervous to square off against his undefeated deck.  He had chewed through his first 3 opponents with little difficulty, and jumped to an early lead against me by securing 1 story and putting 3 success tokens on another.  This was all done without the Temple, which is pretty impressive for a cultist deck.


We had 4 mono-Cthulhu decks (all of them taking the Temple as their restricted card I believe) at the Portland regionals, so it was interesting to see the differences between them.  Joel's was probably the most different with cards like Descendant of Eibon, Henry Anthony Wilcox and Kelly McIlhenney. It was also highly effective.


I think the inclusion of beefier characters (at the expense of some of his sacrificing, recursion and card draw potential from Gustaf) gave him greater stamina and board presence vs the standard Temple/San Giorgio/Gustaf deck.  This way, if his sacrifice engine wasn't running smoothly, he could stall or fetch the cards he needed in order to recover.  Descendant of Eibon was especially effective against me in the opening rounds.

Thanks for the comments. In developing this deck I went through many iterations before settling on this one. The early deck was primarily focused on 0-2 cost characters, but I felt like if I didn't get the Temple out it was over for me. In the end I settled on a larger cost curve and included Descendant to help me field my larger guys. As Matt said, this allowed me stronger board presence when my combo wasn't working. Also, with Descendant, I could go 2 2 1, and then play Henry or Moore with a Transient. The biggest issue with Cthulhu IMO is their lack of card draw, which was partially remedied by San Giorgio. The other key card is Sac Offerings. I overlooked this card when I was first building the deck, but it's an amazing card for coming back from a disadvantageous position or sac'ing everyone and then hitting a big guy. It also meant that first turn (I would always try to go second) I could play only San Giorgio and probably be alright.

As far as the combos go, the main one is Kelly/Temple with the Carpathian. And not running 3 of each was a last minute decision I think now was a mistake. Having both on the table meant being able to fetch Gustaf and quite possibly the Temple. Even if I already had the Temple out, it was great to be able to get another in case it was destroyed.

The other combo that could be really powerful was Dr Wentworth Moore and Dreamlands Fanatic. Being able to pull him from the discard, sac a guy, and put Fanatic into play could be really amazing. A last one was Watcher of Signs with Dragged Into the Deep. It didn't come up that much, but when it did, I could effectively play Dragged for 2. 

Another major player was Bone Sculptor. Another that I didn't give enough credit at first, but he is very versatile. Anti recursion, recurring someone before you commit on your opponents turn, or pulling Gustaf or other cultists from the discard. I would actually play Sculptor, get Gustaf, sac Sculptor then sac Gustaf. You wipe 2 chars and get 1 card for 3. Not a bad deal!

After playing the tourney in Portland, if I could make the deck again, I would take out the Black Winged Ones, play 3x Kelly and the Carpathian, take out Cyclopean Stone and 1x Dragged, and play 2x Called By Azathoth.

The real weakness of this deck was characters like The Claret Knight, and Savio Corvi. But alas, without my Dreamlands Fanatics, it may have to be retired. The cultists are dead, LONG LIVE THE CULTISTS!

Good write up.  I hadn't thought about the Dr. Wentworth + Dreamlands Fanatic combo, that works nicely.  And I agree that restricting Dreamlands Fanatic really hurts this deck type.  I'm not sure it can function without them as they give you early board presence and help against Negotium.