Griftlands – Guide to Decktypes & Keywords

There are a lot of Keywords and associated Decktypes in the game. I will try to give a birds eye overview of them.

Decktypes & Keywords Overview

All credit goes to zgrssd!

Damage Ranges, Tresholds, Buffs

It is helpful to think of the damage ranges as dice with a bonus.


  • The probilities of dice are well known.
  • Asuming a basic dice with continous numbers, the average result can be quickly calculated using Minimum Roll + Maximum Roll / 2.

A 1D6 can roll 1 through 6.

  • 1 + 6 = 7
  • 7 / 2 = 3.5

Damage Numbers

  • A damage of 4-9 can be simply figured out, if you think of it as “1D6+3”.
  • The average of 1D6 is still 3.5. And 3.5+3 = 6.5

However the simple math from above still works as well:

  • 4 + 9 = 13
  • 13 / 2 = 6.5

Damage Buffs

  • Increasing the maximum damage is a flat +0.5 average.
  • Increasing the minimum damage is also a flat +0.5 average.
  • If both happen together they add for a +1 average.


With tresholds it only maters that you roll high enough – after all modifiers! As such they benefit a lot more from minimum damage then maximum damage.

  • Rooks “Striker” card is a 2-5, Threshold 4 card.
  • “Tall Striker” is a 2-7, Treshold 4.
  • “Boosted Striker” is a 2.5, Treshold 4 – but has a increased effect.

For simple dice anolagies and statistics, all you need picture them like this:

  • 3+ on a 1D4. The chance for this is 50%.
  • 3+ on a 1D6. The chance for this is 66%

So increasing the maximum damage does improve the chances – just not by a lot.

A +2 Minimum damage would mean a 100% chance of making the rolls. It has a way bigger impact.

A Flat damage increase meanwhile is easiest simulated by lowering the threshold instead:

  • 2+ on a 1D4 is 75%
  • 2+ on a 1D6 is 83.33%

However also consider that you can increase the roll at the target – wounding and any other effect that increases damage taken will increase the minimum damage easily.

Rooks Battle Deck types

Most of Rooks Decktypes revolve around charges. Even those that do not use one explicitly, tend to be either full, empty or overcharged styles on the side.

When the carge event comes up, these are teh considerations:

  • Empty and Charge Countingl both can benefit from having a lot of Charges.
  • Meanwhile Overcharge benefits more from having few charges, so excess charges turn into overcharge quicker.


Rules: A empty Charge gives Rook 1 defense at the end of turn. That makes this deck slightly defensive.

Empty is the keyword for not having any Charges. This involves a lot of hitting the enemy with the pistols body or otherwise attacking without shooting.

Rook gains the passive bonus for the empty cells, so it lends itself to any type that can make use of defense. Ideally you want to increase the number of cells.

It will be impossible to build relevant overcharge by going this way, given that you never reach full.

  • As you gain 1 charge/turn, it will be a slight challenge to drain those and keep on Empty.
  • The starter decks “Trigger” card is a obvious choice. However usually one of the “Blast” cards can be evolved to consume a charge as well. The important part is that they do not require charges – only use them of avalible.
  • However, this need also gives a opportunity – the “Clicker” Graft triggers when you loose your last charge, which the Empty build is very likely to hit often.


Marked is not a style, but a way to build charges by attacking.


Rules: There is no inherent bonus to having full charges. Any bonus comes from cards or Overcharge.

  • Full is not realy a Deckstyle – but part of two other styles.
  • It isually indicates a card that would be usefull with the Charge Countring or Overcharge styles. Do not pick the wrong kind of full card by accident however.

Charge Counting

Rules: There is no inherent bonus to having full charges. Any bonus comes from cards or Overcharge.

  • While Full and Overcharged are related, they are still two distinct playstyles.
  • Full only requires you to reach full quickly – not to have a high consistent charge generation to get high overcharge!
  • It also benefits from having more charges overall – after all, a lot of these abilities count the number of full charges.

Note that this Build is not about using the charges heavily – it is about having them to trigger card bonus effects often.


Rules: When full, any additional charges turn into overcharge. Overcharge increase maximum damage by +1 per stack. Overcharge is halved every turn.

The goal with Overcharge is to get to full and then just keep building charges. Most of the Overcharge you will gain from simply never stopping to build charges. However there are a few dedicated cards like “Striker” and “Overheater” which build overcharge directly.


Rules: Concentration increases minimum damage, but will not exceed maximum damage. Concentration is halved every time damage is taken from enemy.

Now the rules might lead you to think you have to avoid damage – but that is actually not the case! While it can be played that way, the issue with overcharge is that it can only increase the damage up towards maximum damage – not beyond. So there is a limit to how much concentration you really can use.

  • This style synergizes well with overcharged, to drive home all that extra potential damage.
  • Otherwise it needs cards with a large damage ranges, to be not dependant on overcharged.
  • Note that even just 2-3 stacks can make any treshold roll a guarantee.

Burn & Scorched


Burn applies full damage to the carrier and half damage to all it’s allies. It is halved every turn.
Scorched caps the loss of Burn to 2/turn, at the cost of it’s own stacks.

  • Unlike most games, in Griftlands Burn is a very good style to deal with bosses that summon adds. Keep putting burns onto the boss and it will “burn out” it’s adds largely autonomously – all while withering away itself.
  • However without Scorch, it is not really possible to get high amounts of stacks. So they go hand in hand.
  • To round it off, there are a number of “if you attack someone with burn” effects. Those naturally benefit from attacking often. “Tempered” and “Crackle” are cards that come to mind.

The main downside is that they do not work well with groups of only weak enemies – you need a strong target to “anchor” the burns. Something that will survive the full damage, to kill it’s team with the half damage. Weak targets will die quickly from burning themself and from their allies burning.


Rules: When the target takes damage, a random ally takes the same damage. Loose one stack per target damage redirected.

This style overlaps a bit in use with Burn, but it also extremely distinct. So it is propably best to look at the differences to burn:

  • It is useless against solo enemies. Burn will at least do some damage in that case – not so this one.
  • It works realy well to clean out uneven enemy teams – but then you end up with a solo enemy, where it is useless.
  • It only needs one initial stack to be effective. As a result you can focus down high priority easily and then switch around once they are done
  • The strongest case is against equal pairs of enemies.
  • There need to be few, very powerfull attacks. They also ideally should re-apply the debuff as often as they use it. The “Kickochet” variant of “Kick” is a good example of how your Attacks should be and what cost you can expect from them.
Volodymyr Azimoff
About Volodymyr Azimoff 13971 Articles
I love games and I live games. Video games are my passion, my hobby and my job. My experience with games started back in 1994 with the Metal Mutant game on ZX Spectrum computer. And since then, I’ve been playing on anything from consoles, to mobile devices. My first official job in the game industry started back in 2005, and I'm still doing what I love to do.

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