Winning in Forge after Dusk Road.
Since Forge and Gauntlet got a reset due to the release of Dusk Road i found myself playing forge again.
I think i found a simple and good strategy that works rather consistent and wanted to share this with all players to safe you some gold while trying to reach Masters in Forge.
Disclaimer: some players like to gather cards in forge. This guides main target is getting you through forge, which is a reason why i don´t cover all factions equally well since there is one particular faction that is extremely strong in forge.
So as already mentioned theres one Faction that stands tall above our other options: Time.
As you might know, as soon as you picked two different faction colored cards, all future options will only contain cards of these respective colors. Your second color is most of the time up to you, I will talk about the different advantages and disadvantages of the secondary colors later.
When drafting with the intend to win you need to get the game to give you time cards, sometimes even if you have to force yourself into picking a mediocre card just to have this faction logged in.
The most consistent gameplan in Forge is: create a boardstall and then attack with units that have evasion (Unblockable, Flying, Quickdraw). This lets us abuse the general lack of strong units in AI decks and the more defensive play of the AI.
Our Main Faction: Time
So a small summary of why we pick Time as our main Faction:
- It has big durable units that help us create board stalls
- It has a lot of deadly units that help us create board stalls
- It has a lot of good fixing for bad sigil draws
- It has a lot of defensive flyers that on the one hand help us stall the board in the air or chip away life from our oponent during board stalls
- It has two strong synergys that are achieved very easy; sentinel / explorer and dinosaur / dinosaur
- Time has a lot of really good common cards which makes this strategy very consistent
- Alot of nightfall cards which are extremly good in forge
Nightfall in Forge:
I am not really sold on nightfall in normal decks yet, altough it is a incredible powerful mechanic for players in Forge. The quality of AI decks are usually tuned down in forge due to the low quality most player created forge decks have.
Player card Value >> AI card value
That means that every nightfall card we draw is a huge boost to our total board quality where the AI is very likely to draw another crappy unit. We can add bigger threats faster, get that extra sigil we need or find that one answer that we need to change the boardstall to our advantage.
Time: Which Cards to Pick Up
So What cards do we want to get?
I won´t go into detail about all available cards but i just want to highlight some of the picks you should consider. When playing with this guide you will quickly learn the main goal and this should help you evaluate not mentioned cards in future drafts.
First in Line: Trail maker
Our thumbnail and one of my favourite cards in Dusk Road. Trail maker is a monster when it comes to ramp and fixing, he is basically a power card that helps us ramp into our board stall much quicker. While hes at it he fixes our Influence. He makes many hands playable that would not have been playable without him. Instant pick when he is offered and a maximum of 3 should be enough.
He has deadly which makes for an easy boardstall and triggers nightfall. Easy pick, maximum of 2 tough. (Sandviper is the worse alternative)
Flying helps us stall small 1 dmg flyers; gives us ramp for quicker boardstalls, we gain boardadvantage by warping him. 3 should be enough
Ageless Sentinel + Scourstone Sentinel
The power pack. These should always be drafted in combination when given the option. Ageless sentinel is a bland 3/5 for 4 which stalls alsmost any board at this time. Even better tough with bond she enables us to play scourstone Sentinel at turn 6. A 7/8 overwhelm almost always trades 2:1 or keeps the bigger threats of our AI buddy at bay. Scourstone Sentinel can easily block your hand tough so a maximum of 2 is enough. Ageless Sentinel on the other hand i would take up to 4. (Beware of the double time influence)
Hes our option number 2 to get scourstone on turn 6, always a good pick alotuhg he comes down a turn later then Ageless Sentinel. Max. 2.
You might noticed a pattern: If theres sentinel in the name, chances are its a good pick. Just like the others: he stalls well and with an explorer on the board he even gives you a card back. He is a bit heavy on the cost with 6 so a maximum of 2 is advised. Also keep an eye out for explorers to trigger the Ally Bonus.
3/3 Dinosaur with the Potential to be 6/6. As soon as this guy enters your deck you need to get some dinosaurs. Lucky enough Time has a lot of good and common dinosaurs such as: Avirax Familiar, Horned Vorlunk, Baying Serasaur (Nightfall), so prioritize these guys accordingly
Always a good early blocker and can trandform into a beast when we stalled the board for long enough, the 8/8 guardian breaks later stalls and most of the time trades with at least 2 enemy units. Maximum of 3.
Towertop Patrol / Archive Curator
Both are pretty much interchangeable altough the curator is usually favored. They help us control the skys and chip away during board stalls. Theres almost no limit how many you should take, just don´t screw yourself over with your mana curve.
Teleport / Envelop
One of the big problems in the forge are AI-Equip decks. The AI unloads almost all its weapon onto one creature and then just beats you to death with it. Teleport and Envelop are not very good cards in general altough i would never enter forge without at least one copy of those. Bouncing a unit back onto the Hand removes all attached weapons and most of the time mean an instant win against these kind of decks. When you play Agains Rakano Warfare you should always mulligan in hope of having one of these in your opening hands). You should aim for 3+ total removal cards in your deck so when you can´t get your hands on other forms of removal take don´t hesitate to take these.
2 sets of Ornamental Daggers are optimal. These help you to balance your units Attack and defense values according to the current board situation. Never use these when the board is already stalled. Once you have a stable board you can use these on your fliers to take down your oponent quicker. These also synergize very well with a lot of the new Gunslingers that require a weapon to have additional effects.
The secondary faction are mostly optional since 90% of our gameplan is achievable with just Time cards.
Personally i choose the secondary faction by which rare/legendary i want to get offered as card #25
If you just want to win heres my personal ranking on secondary factions:
1. Shadow - Has all what time lacks especialy in the removal department
- Many good Nightfall Cards
- A lot of direct removal for the few big threats
- Deadly units that help stalling
- Good aggressive flyers
Good Picks: Direfang Spider, Extinguish; Vainglory Patrol; Unseen agent, Triggerman (with ornamental Daggers)
2. Primal - Very similar to time itself
- Good Dinosaurs
- Decent flyers
- Decent blockers
- Card draw
Good Picks: Scaly gruan,Serpent Trainer, Cobalt Acolyte, Surveyin Mantasaur, Wisdom of the elders
3. Fire - Aggressive and more risky
- Good early blockers in form of grenadines
- Damage based removal
- Quickdraw Units to mitigate boardstalls (T3-Evasion)
Good Picks:Grenadine Drones, Audacious Bandit, Rebel Sharpshooter, Cannonbearer, Thunderhoof warrior
- Decent flyers
- Decent removal
- Most commons are not that good
Good Picks: Entrapment, Finest Hour, Stalwart Shield, Roosting Owl,Town Watchmen
All these matchups are mainly compared due to there commons. Certain Uncommons or even Rares can fit perfectly into our gameplan but our main focus should be the things that are most likely to come around.
Matchups VS AI Decks
I will make this quick and dirty. I don´t know all of the AI Decks by name but you should be able to analyze theire Strategy and play accordingly.
Go wide decks
Grenadin and Praxis decks that try strength in numbers need to be stalled very quickly. If you don´t get a good curve or get mana screwd you might be dead by turn 5. Try to get small blockers early on and even consider sacrificing some of your non ramp units to control the board. As soon as you have 1 or 2 4-Pwer creatures on the board you should be fine. Stall the AI and kill them with flyers or force X:1 trades till the board is empty.
As alread mentioned, the goal of these decks are to equip one unit with as much BS as possible. The chance to loose by turn 4 is likely altough a boardstall won´t help here. You should have around 3 removals in your deck. Mulligan to have at least one. If you are out of luck try to find a removal with nightfall as soon as possible. If the equipped unit doesn´t have quickdraw a deadly creature can help as well. As soon as you X:1 him by killing his weaponmule you shoul be able to win easily. Keep in mind Teleported and enveloped units loos all there weapons.
These are Meme Decks. Just stall and enjoy the easy win.
I might expand this area when i feel like it :3
How Should Our Final Deck Look?
So due to the unpredictability of the drafting process its hard to Nail down how a final decks looks like.
Heres a general idea what your deck should look like:
- ~4 Ramp units like Avirax Familiar / Trail maker
- ~7 good blockers at 4 Power
- ~4 endgame threads in Form of 6+ Power units (Flying preffered)
- ~3 removals
- ~5 utility units (Deadly / Nightfall / small Flyer)
- ~2 rares that fullfill no role whatsoever but are rares so they are good anyway
As already mentioned time offers very good, common cards so don´t be afraid to draft at a ratio of 75% Time 25% other faction. The cards of the secondary faction should usually be picked when it fullfills a role your current time cards don´t fullfill yet or are unlikely to fullfill, like direct removal or good early game blockers.