Just started out with Star Trek Adversaries and a little overwhelmed? Here's a guide for complete beginners (never played a CCG (Card Collecting Game) in their life and those who have, but still want an overview on what's new). I will cover all sorts of cards, play styles, deck building, and maybe some other stuff.
Welcome to Star Trek Adversaries! To help out new players, there is a tutorial. At this time, it cannot be opted out of and must be played every time a new account is used.
I know they give you a lot of info off the bat, but be sure to read it! Here's a quick refresher, if you want:
Just follow the instructions from here. Cards that need to be played will be highlighted. This is a mock match, so don't worry about losing because you can't.
When you summon the Enterprise, don't worry about attacking the ship your opponent has in play, just attack them 'to the face' (the other flagship).
This tutorial is supposed to be a brief overview of most of the major parts of the CCG, including the one mechanic unique to Adversaries: Retreat. I'll go more in depth on that later.
Now you've completed the tutorial and can see the primary page for Adversaries. From here, you can go just about anywhere.
We'll start with the rewards you get for completing the tutorial the first time: 315 Command Points(CP) & 1500 Latinum(Lat). Yes, you do start out with a bit of premium currency, isn't that nice? You also get replicator patterns, but I'll go into that under Deck Building.
With this currency you can either buy flagships or packs. I recommend packs- right now the only cards you have are basic and let us be honest, they aren't that good. If there's a ship you really, really want though, pick it up with CP. All Klingon flagships will be purchasable with your starting CP, though there are a few Federation ones that require a bit more.
Why start out with packs then? Because without buying any flagships, there are six unlocked immediately.
- Special (SPC): Retreat target friendly ship
- Ultimate (ULT): Retreat any ship
- SPC: Summon a "Shuttlepod Prototype" -2/1: Haste
- ULT: Summon a "Ganges Class" -5/1: Haste
- SPC: Give Modulating Shields to target friendly ship with 4 Attack or less.
- ULT: Give +2 Attack to all ships with Modulating Shields.
- SPC: Summon an "Escort Transport"- 2/1: Core Breach: Summon a "Rescue Transport".
- ULT: Target ship gains +4 attack and all Core Breach affects trigger twice.
- SPC: Return target friendly ship to your hand and reduce its cost to play by 2.
- ULT: Reduce the cost of all cards in hand by 2.
- SPC: Deal 3 damage to the enemy Flagship and 1 damage to yours.
- ULT: Deal 6 damage to the enemy Flagship and 2 damage to yours.
Now I know the next question: Which one is best? My personal preference runs Klingon, but I'll be honest: They all have their strengths and weaknesses. Make a choice based on how you want to play. And if you aren't sure what Haste or Modulating Shields is, check the next section down. ;)
Once you've chosen your ship though, it's time to deck build! (When/if you buy cards, there are three options for packs: Standard Packs, Klingon Packs, and Federation Packs. If you plan on playing mostly Klingon or mostly Federation, grab the themed packs. Otherwise, Standard will do. Themes packs ensure you won't get any cards for the other faction.)
To deck build: select your ship and hit the deck button!
What Does "X" Mean?
- Haste: When this ship is played, it automatically can attack. (Normally ships must be in play one turn before they can attack)
- Guardian: This ship must be destroyed before your flagship can be attacked. (Note: if a ship is in Stealth, Stealth does override Guardian.)
- Stealth/Cloaking Device: This ship cannot be targeted by attacks or effects. It may be selected if an effect reads 'random' and will be selected if an effect reads 'all.' If this ship attacks, it 'decloaks' and can be targeted.
- Core Breach: When this card is destroyed (or a ship takes lethal damage), the effect is triggered.
- Play: When this card enters the battlefield, the effect is triggered.
- Retreat: When this card is retreated, the effect is triggered. (Note: If a ship is retreated without a retreat effect, it does still give you all the energy from that ship's cost back. It also returns any crew played on that ship to your deck, randomly shuffled in.)
- Trample: If the attack of this ship is greater then the health of the ship it attacks, the difference is dealt to the flagship. (Note: Modulating Shields prevents all damage- Trample does not work it.)
- Bloodthirst: If this ship takes damage, the effect is triggered. Damage can be lethal (in case of summoning another ship).
- Modulating Shields: All damage for one attack is prevented.
- Commander: A crew must be placed in the Commander slot (attack/blue) for this effect to be activated.
- Engineer: A crew must be placed in the Engineering slot (health/yellow) for this effect to be activated.
- Disabled: For one turn, this ship may not attack. No other status is affected.
- Neutralize: All buffs (with the exception of vanilla stats added by crew) are removed from a ship. This is a persistent effect.
You're allowed to have 30 cards in your deck. Each Flagship also comes with 8 unique core cards that can only be drawn when the SPC/ULT is activated. The SPC gives you a choice of three cards and you can pick one. The ULT will give you three cards. Legendaries (Gold rims) can only be drawn once per game.
Without buying any cards, all you have are 1* (commons). Using just starting Lat, you can buy 10 packs. That's 50 cards, at least 10 which are guaranteed to be at least 3* (rare). You're probably going to get more then that, maybe even some Epics (4*) or if you're really lucky, a Legendary or two (5*). Even better? A 1/5* Legendary functions the same as a 5/5* Legendary and currently the shop is coded so you can't get duplicate Legendaries until you have them all.
While someone can own as many Legendaries as they want, only six can be in a deck at a given time. Three of them can be crew and three of them can be ships. Legendaries, like all cards, have alignments: Neutral, Klingon, Federation.
The Energy Curve:
In the bottom left hand side of the deck builder, there is a graph. It is numbered 0 to 7+, as you add cards to a deck, it shows you the 'curve' of the deck. Here, you want a bell curve in most cases. You should have more 3, 4, and 5 energy ships then anything else.
While you can theoretically have a deck of all crew, I would limit yourself to six or seven. Crew are great- but you need a ship to play them on. I also recommend crew that return to your hand upon core breach (both the Federation & Klingons have at least one).
As a new player, you're automatically given two replicator patterns: 1 3* and one 4*- these can be used to replicate any 3 or 4*- so find ones that makes synergy with your deck. You can also pull replicator patterns from card packs (nothing quite like getting a legendary replicator). To use them, go into the Replicator under Deck option and right click a card (it can be one you have or don't have, but I recommend ones you don't have yet.
My personal preference is to pick my crew and build around them. If you happened to have pulled a Legendary, you might want to think about building around them. Don't be afraid to rebuild. No one builds a perfect deck their first try, don't worry if it's not that good. Look at what you have. Run retreat if you have a lot, run core breach if you have a lot. Don't be afraid to ask for help in the Discord either, everyone is pretty willing to help out. I cannot be any more specific then this because there is no one way to a build a deck. I recommend synergy with your core cards & Flagship but that is about it.
Example Deck Build
Using only the beginning Latinum, I purchased 10 Klingon packs to give a rough idea what a new deck would look like. I got extremely lucky and pulled two Legendaries: Quark & Gowron.
Like I said, I have a strong preference for Klingons so I build a deck for the Raptor Class. (To be quite honest though, I'd probably buy the D5 Battlecruiser or Bird of Prey ENT. But Raptor is a stable beginner ship, so here we go!)
Because I got two Legendaries, I automatically added them to my deck. Most Legendaries should be run, once you have more then six you can start getting picky about which ones. Since they're both crew, I went on add four more crew.
- In the end I had: (the "+" after a name denotes something I pulled from a card pack)
- Toral: 1 energy to play, 1* rarity. Core Breach: Return to hand. (He gives +1 attack if played in Commander slot).
- Arne Darvin: 2 energy, 1* rarity. Play: Steal a card from your opponents deck. (He also gives either +1 attack or +1 health, depending on which slot he is placed in)
- Kolos+: 3 energy, 2* rarity, Core Breach: Summon "Escort Transport" into play (+1 attack or +2 health)
- M-113 Creature: 4 energy, 1* rarity. Play: Deal 3 damage to enemy flagship
- Gowron+: 5 energy, 5*- Give adjacent ships +2 (also gives +2 attack or +2 health)
- Quark+: 5 energy, 5*- Add two random Legendaries to your hand (also gives +1 health if played in engineering)
With Quark, you don't have to worry about whether or not you own the Legendary- he can pull anything (even Federation cards if you're playing Klingon or Klingon cards if you're playing Federation).
Final Deck List: (Name/# in deck)
- Bajoran Fighter+ 1
- Ferengi Research Shuttle+ 1
- Ferengi Shuttlecraft 1
- Malon Export Ship+ 1
- Toral 1
- 22nd Century Bird of Prey 1
- Arne Darvin 1
- Bajoran Research Transport+ 1
- Klingon Arms Freighter 1
- Raptor Class 2
- Andorian Escort 1
- Baxial+ 1
- B'rel Bird of Prey+ 1
- Kazon Fighter 1
- Kolos+ 1
- Maquis Recon 1
- Rebel Klingon Shuttle 1
- IKS M'Char+ 1
- K't'inga Battlecruiser+ 1
- M-113 Creature 1
- Voth Research Ship+ 1
- D7 Cruiser+ 1
- D'Kora Marauder+ 1
- Gowron+ 1
- Kazon Heavy Carrier+ 1
- Quark+ 1
- Vor'cha BattleCruiser 1
- Mercenary Galor Class 1
- Voth City Ship+ 1
This deck is primarily a core breach deck, with a couple Guardians (my personal preference) thrown in. This plays off the Raptor's Ult which doubles the effect of a core breach (and the core cards certainly don't hurt). If you want, this can be copy & pasted directly into the import function of the deck builder. It will put whatever cards you have into a deck and leave out the ones you don't. It's a relatively decent deck, but I wouldn't want to run into the top 10 with it.
Annnnd: How it looks In Game!
Specials & Ultimates
So every Flagship has a unique ability, that's great! But how do you use them? A special costs 20 Auxiliary Energy (AUX) and the Ultimate costs 40. You get 5 AUX per turn passed, but if you also have unspent energy, it's converted into AUX at a rate of 1:1. Any damage your Flagship takes (including self-inflicted) give you AUX equal to the damage taken. You can use this to your advantage.
I've broken down Flagships into three categories: Summons, Direct Damage, and Effects- some fit into multiple categories, but I go by Ultimate.
As the name implies, these Flagships summon other ships to your side of the field.
- D5 Cruiser- Special summons a random minor reinforcement (multiple abilities- more AUX per turn, boost to adjacent ships, etc). The Ultimate summons 4/3 ship that grants +2 attack to adjacent ships and gives +10 AUX (another personal favorite)
- NX Class: SPC: 2/1 with haste ULT: 5/1 with haste
- Intrepid Class- SPC: Summon a "Delta Flyer Mark I"- 1/2: Modulating Shields Retreat: Summon a Delta Flyer Mark II ULT: Summon a "Delta Flyer Mark III" 2/5 Guardian, Retreat: summon an Ablative Armor Intrepid
- Constitution Class- SPC: Deal 2 damage to the enemy Flagship ULT: Summon a "Constitution Class Mark II"= 4/3: Haste. Adjacent ships gain +2 attack
- Galaxy Class- SPC: Summon a random "Tactical Shuttle" ULT: Summon a "Galaxy Class Heavy Escort" - 3/6: at the start of your turn, deal 5 damage to the enemy flagship (Federation version of the D5, more expensive but direct damage is hard to beat)
Either damage ships on your opponent's field or the opponent's Flagship itself.
- K'Tinga Battlecruiser- Special deal 2 damage to damaged ship or 1 damage to undamaged ship. Ultimate destroy one target ship.
- Jach Class- SPC: 1/2 ship with bloodthirst (+2 attack & jamming) and cloak. ULT: Deal 4 damage to all undamaged ships
- Vor'cha Battlecruiser- SPC: Deal 2 damage to target ship ULT: Destroy Target ship
- Crossfield Class- SPC: Deal 1 damage to two random enemy ships ULT: Deal 3 damage to three enemy ships
- Constitution Class Refit- SPC: Attack target ship and deal 3 damage (PLEASE NOTE, YOU TAKE DAMAGE FROM THIS EQUAL TO THE ATTACK OF TARGETED SHIP) ULT: Destroy target enemy
- Neghvar Battlecruiser- SPC: 3 damage to enemy flagship, 1 to yours ULT: 6 damage to enemy flagship and 2 to yours
These give an effect to either your ships (positive) or to the enemy's ship (negative). This includes retreating, among other things.
- Raptor Class- The Special for this summons a ship, but the Ultimate gives +4 attack & make makes core breaches trigger twice
- Bird of Prey ENT- Special for this summons a guardian with a core breach that summons another guardian. However, the ultimate gives +1/+2 & guardian to every ship on your field. (this is a personal favorite of mine)
- Qugh Destroyer- SPC: give friendly ship +3 & trample ULT: give all friendly ships with trample +3 attack until end of turn
- Sarcophagus Ship- SPC: Give friendly ship with cloaking device +1/+2 and cloak them ULT: Grant +6 attack to ship in stealth
- Bird of Prey, DSC- SPC: Summon 2/1 with cloaking device. When friendly ship leaves stealth, gains jamming and +1 attack ULT: Restealth all ships with cloaking device & give +2 attack
- Constellation Class- SPC: Give Modulating shields to target friendly ship with 4 attack or less ULT: Give +2 attack to all ships with Modulating shields (Favorite of the Feds)
- Nebula Class- SPC: Give +2 attack and Jamming to target friendly shiip with 3 attack or less until end of turn ULT: Give Jamming and +3/+3 to target friendly ship with 3 attack or less
- Sovereign Class- SPC: Grand and Restore 2 hit points to target friendly ship ULT: Give all friendly ships +1/+2 and Guardian (Similar to BoP ENT, however there's a lot of healing buff- so your cards might be hard to kill but you might not be doing a lot of damage. Also more expensive)
- Veglargh Class- Special: return ship to hand, reduce cost by 2. Ult: decrease cost of all cards in hand by 2
- Bird of Prey- SPC: Summon Troop Transport. Core Breach (draw card, reduce cost by 2) ULT: reduce all cards in hand by 2
- Miranda Class- SPC: Summon a "Type 15 Research Pod" 1/2: Modulating Shields. Retreat: Draw a card and reduce it's cost to play by 2 ULT: Reduce the cost of all cards in hand by 2
- Excelsior Class- SPC: Retreat friendly ship ULT: Retreat any ship
- Defiant Class- SPC: Disable 1 target enemy ship ULT: Disable 3 random enemy ships
As of right now, Quark's is only PvE (player versus engine/AI) but there are plans to make it PvP.
It's also draft, which means none of the cards or flagship you own are used. First, you pick a flagship out of a choice of three. Then you draw 'random' selections of 3 cards (I say random, but they'll either be neutral or the same alignment as the Flagship you chose), you chose 1 card from each set. Your first, eleventh, and twenty-first draw will be all legendaries, so you will have at least 3 legendaries in your deck no matter what.
Be careful with how many crew you take, especially if there's an option for a ship instead. it is harder to get a good crew & ship ratio but when you do, it works great.
You might notice these AIs look familiar if you play with the AIs available on the left hand side of the Multiplayer screen. Your first opponent will be easy and if you win it becomes medium and then hard until Borg.
Should you lose a game, you go down to the tier below. After 3 loses, you cannot play in that draft anymore.
Remember: The AI are a little dumb (as of build 4.9). They don't really retreat, their attacks sometimes don't make sense, and they'll use their SPC/ULT as soon as it is available. In some cases, it's beneficial to push the AI over to their ULT (Borg Queen, looking at you) rather then their special.
- William T. Riker
- SPC: Disable target enemy ship
- ULT: Disable all enemy ships
- SPC: Deal 1 damage to target undamaged ship
- ULT: Deal 4 damage to target undamaged ship
- SPC: Bribe ship with 3 or less attack to join you
- ULT: Deal 8 damage to target enemy ship
- Beverly Crusher
- SPC: Restore 4 hitpoints to all friendly ships
- ULT: Restore 8 hitpoints to all friendly ships
- SPC: Summon a "Protype Bird of Prey"-2/1 Core breach: summon a "Protype Raptor"
- ULT: Target ship's core breach triggers twice
- SPC: Summon an "Experimental B'Rel Class"-2/1 core breach: Gain 1 energy
- ULT: Reduce the cost of all the cards in your hand by 1
- Thy'lek Shran
- SPC: Summon an "Andorian Escort"- 3/2 Guardian
- ULT: Summon three "Andorian Escorts"
- SPC: Summon a random Common Quality ship
- ULT: Summon a random Legendary Quality ship
- SPC: Summon a "Type 15 Research Shuttle"- 2/1 & Haste
- ULT: Summon a "Miranda Class Recon"- 5/1 & Haste
- SPC: Summon a "Recon Bird of Prey"- 2/1 with Cloaking Device. When friendly ship exits stealth, gain stealth
- ULT: Resealth all friendly ships with cloaking device
- Jean-Luc Picard
- SPC: Summon a "Galaxy Class Heavy Escort" -3/6 At the beginning of your turn, deal 5 damage to the enemy Flagship
- ULT: Summon two "Galaxy Class Heavy Escorts"
- SPC: Deal 3 damage to 2 random enemy ships
- ULT: Summon a "Borg Cube"
- Borg Queen
- SPC: Summon a "Borg Sphere" 3/2: Modulating Shields & Haste
- ULT: Summon a "Borg Tactical Cube" -7/7 at the end of your turn, summon a 1/2 Borg Probe with Guardian
The PvP Ladder
The meat of the game is in PvP (Player versus player). This can be found if one hits the "Ready" button and selects their deck.
Every new player starts out at 1000 ELO. You win and lose ELO as you win and lose games. If you're familiar with the Chess ELO algorithm, that same one is used by Star Trek: Adversaries (if you aren't familiar with it, don't worry, it's not that important. The higher you go on the board, the easier it is to lose ELO).
Right now, the matchmaker will give you anyone else in queue- which means it's possible for a brand new player to match up with the top 10. It's unfortunate and you can either stick it out and maybe learn something or simply concede. There's also quite a few people who stream games, so don't be afraid to watch a couple.
Mulligan or Not to Mulligan?
My rule of thumb for Mulligans is usually to get rid of any crew cards. You can't play them turn one anyways. Then anything over 3 cost. You want to use your starting hand fast. If every card is four or over, you might want to keep the lowest cost rules. As you play the game more, you might find how you mulligan is different (if you run cost reduction decks, you might want high cost cards, etc), but this is just for starters.