Over One Million Served
by Terence Jason Dorman
A player emailed me recently asking about “that wacky deck” I played during casual games at Gen-Con this past year. Considering I didn't have a glaringly good idea for an article this week, I thought I'd share the deck list with all of you. It is certainly a wacky one, so maybe you all can have some fun with it. At the very least you can all tell me how amazing/terrible it is.
- Tournament Faction
- Greed x2 (starting)
- Deception x13
- Characters (26)
- Erotic Assassin x4
- Master Scavenger x4
- Sudden Osprey x3
- Ceremonious Groomer x4
- Property Condemner x2
- The Billionaire x3
- Fired Hand x2
- Martial Artist x4
- Tactics (24)
- Extravagant Contusion x4
- Peculate x3
- Burly Assailment x4
- Hidden Ruins x2
- Drygulch x4
- Scrag x4
- Miraculous Regeneration x3
- Items (6)
- Hollow Moose x2
- Rusty Pickaxe x4
- Locations (4)
- Vast Mastabatorium x4
It doesn't take a genius to see the combo that lies within this deck and I'm sure most of you will have figured it out just by reading the list. For those who haven't figured it out yet, it is The Billionaire spending all of his easily earned money at the Vast Mastabatorium.
All you have to do to initiate this combo is have a Vast Mastabatorium under your opponent's control and then play The Billionaire. This can easily be accomplished by using the Mastabatorium yourself at the end of your opponent's turn to lose one influence and draw a card. Then, on your turn, you can play The Billionaire to activate the opponent's (your) Mastabatorium five times so that they draw five cards and lose five influence.
Now you are probably wondering why I would want my opponent to draw five cards. The simple answer is that I don't. I never want my opponent drawing cards, unless of course them drawing cards means I win the game.
If The Billionaire is already in play on my turn (which is certainly possible due to Burly Assailment), I am effectively paying five for my opponent to lose five influence. This could be the nail in the coffin, but it could also be a bomb combo if my opponent has more than one Mastabatorium under his control. Two Mastabatoriums means I can essentially pay 10/deal 10, which in the late game could mean victory against almost any deck.
The Other Way to Play It
The nice aspect of this combo deck, though, is that it does not rely solely on the combo to win. I have played plenty of games with this deck in which I have won without ever seeing a Vast Mastabatorium or The Billionaire in my hand. This is because the deck has a strong aggressive presence with cards such as Erotic Assassin and Martial Artist.
Couple these characters with the handful of kill cards found in the deck (Extravagant Contusion, Drygulch, Scrag) and you can have a very steady assault. You won't be flooding the board with characters or doing massive damage each turn, but you could be consistently breaking through for 3-5 influence a turn. It doesn't seem like much, but after a few turns of that the opponent will be in Mastabatorium range.
This deck doesn't have much in the way of traditional toolbox cards, but the ones it does have provide the deck with quite a bit of support. Master Scavenger is there to decimate any deck that relies on discard pile recursion, particularly Arcanist and Dark Awakening builds. Miraculous Regeneration keeps your fighters around after death while building resource advantage. Property Condemner is the obvious answer to locations and, while there is no direct answer to items, Peculate can be a fun way to steal their item hate and/or turn their items against them.
Similar to the Toolbox Cards, the Combat Tricks found in this deck aren't your usual flavor. Sudden Osprey, while popular amongst Team Hopper players, isn't always a first choice for “combat trick” cards.
Fired Hand, however, is a very popular combat choice and is in this deck primarily for his reveal ability. I won't say that you can't play him as a character, but in my build of this deck he is really there to be a facedown resource.
Lastly you have Burly Assailment, which allows you to throw a character in to play at Tactic speed. This can be a very powerful combat trick when you are on defense, allowing you to spring a Martial Artist or Fired Hand out of nowhere if the situation calls for it.
This deck has a lot of flexibility in that its Tactics can be used in a variety of ways. Burly Assailment and Hidden Ruins speak for themselves, allowing you to stash late game plays away while continuing to build your resources. They also lets you hide cards from discard decks, which is a powerful tool when going up against particular Arcanist builds.
The deck thrives most, though, in its ability to shift gears. While it does have the possibility to be a strong aggressive deck, I have noticed that it fears a late game aggressive battle in which it will be outmatched. If this is the case, this deck has the ability to switch to the combo portion of the deck, hoping to win the game via the Mastabatorium/Billionaire win condition.
I can't talk about this deck without warning players about its downside. One problem I have encountered with the deck, and probably the primary reason why I haven't made it my main tournament deck, is that it has difficulties with the rush.
Seeing as how Rage Sligh is extremely popular right now, this deck simply does not perform as well as I would like. If you can manage to hold off the rush via a slew of kill cards or strong defensive play then this deck has a chance to win, but for the most part is generally just outmatched by rush decks.
I'm never one go give up, though, so I will likely revisit this deck once Seed 3: Fall of Marmothoa is released.
This deck, while a bit wacky, is a lot of fun to play and promotes a great deal of thinking. This definitely isn't a deck for those who prefer straight beatdowns but is instead geared more towards those who like a medium length game with some control elements involved.
I definitely advise trying this deck out and tweaking it to your heart’s desire. Be sure to let me know what you think of it on the forums, good or bad, and maybe we can all discuss some ways in which we can make the deck better than it already is.