Should you rub your lucky talisman before you play a game of Gwent?
This blog post is written for Gwent, but it could be transcribed to any other card collecting game. Does it depend on what hand you draw originally? Or is it more important what deck you have prepared for the match? Or perhaps you can just throw one card after another and still win?
I’m slowly advancing through the levels of Gwent (currently ~22 or so) and have already had plenty of opportunities to meet all kinds of people. The mechanics implemented by the developers of the game make a good effort to match you against an opponent with a similar deck and skills. However, I’ve seen incredibly smart players as well as folks who have no clue what they are doing. Before we go any further, I must admit that when you are lucky and know how to use your luck, there’s little to nothing that your enemies can do to stop you. That, however doesn’t happen often.
Luck for the Win!
In the below shared video I have shared a single highlighted game of Gwent that demonstrates how one lucky draw can compensate for a poor start or even cover up a risky decision. In a most desperate moment when I was running out of cards and was required to win the 2nd round of the match, I had to risk it all and hope for a little bit of good luck. I got it. The Regis card I pulled out of my deck allowed me to play for winning the round as my opponent had already passed. I had on the battlefield the “Holy Cow” card and combining it with Regis, secured me a nice lead heading into the 3rd and final round.
I was playing against Monsters and their passive ability to keep one random non-Gold card on the battlefield for the next row, played a nasty trick to my enemy. They got to keep the 1-Strength Cow card instead of another, which seriously crippled them and nearly erased their chance of winning the match. We only had a few cards left in our hands and I started the final round with a 17 points lead from Regis and my own Cow card.
A bit of a side step in this paragraph, if you would allow me? ^^
You know, I have a serious weakness for Regis. He’s my favorite character in the Witcher universe. I loved his part in the books and [SPOILER ALERT] his appearance in Blood and Wine was a fantastic surprise to me. That doesn’t mean that I keep him in my decks only because I like him, heh. No. Regis is very powerful when played in the first or second rounds. Similar to the Gold Ciri card. They, however, are nearly useless in the final round. Being both Gold types of cards and with not so high value initially, means that they bring nothing to the war table except for their basic cuteness and Strength.
Set a trap or Bluff your way to victory!
In this first example, I showed you what it means to be lucky, but if I had not build my deck the way I had, I may have not survived this one. Luck or no luck, the player must be able to see it when it happens and make a good use out of it.
Now, let’s see how things work when you play the “bluffing game”. I must warn you, a dose of luck is always involved with this as well. You never know what cards your opponent holds in their hand, what experience they have with their and your faction, how they can counter. If they lack these things, it’s easier. However, sometimes they can see through the bluff and yet fall into the trap. Why? Simply because they have no other options. Check out the video example I have for you:
In this game we had a Skellige vs Skellige match. Playing against the same faction is always risky as hell. Especially in my case. Skellige is my favorite and I know this faction much better than Scoia’tael, Northern Realms and the Monsters. This has an advantage and a weakness. As I admit in the very beginning of the video, my deck is usually built for various situations and isn’t one-sided, nor do I build my decks for pure fun and hope for a good luck. When I face Skellige, some of my tactics are nullified and/or dangerous to attempt, because the other player has the same or similar cards and can shut me down or even worse – take advantage, very quickly and easily.
The important moment in this video is in the end of the 2nd round. Clearly they were building for Axeman cards and attempting to buff them, so I placed a trap. They had a Savage Bear on their battlefield and the 2 Axemen, I placed my own bear to help buff the same Axemen, expecting and predicting their next move – the 2 Crach an Craite Warriors. It happened. Here’s where I stop to wonder – did they fall for my trap or was it just my luck that they had no other “useful” cards to play. This was the 2nd round, a Pass was an option. Instead, I saw the Axemen getting buffed for 12 points each and my next logical move was Scorch.
So, who wins, damn it? Do we always depend on luck?
These 2 examples were some of my interesting recent games. I hope that they do demonstrate the factor LUCK is in the game of Gwent. Not a single match can be played without at least one of the players being lucky at one point or another. However, luck cannot with every game for you. You might get lucky and win a round, but remember, Gwent is played for 2 out of 3 and the mechanics are very cleverly placed to prevent or minimize the chance of getting that lucky 2 rounds in a row. The “experience” factor is always a huge part. Pretty much all of the cards have their counterparts and all strategies have several ways to be shut down or mitigated. You just need to see them all, play them all and… be lucky with the Kegs.
Ok, you got me! Luck is heavily involved with earning new cards and how fast you can earn them. I haven’t spent a single penny so far. All the cards I have earned are through leveling and Kegs opening (buying with Ore).
PLEASE, keep in mind that this blog post and all my videos of Gwent are for entertaining purposes mostly. Some aim to show and teach something, others just want to make you smile, while watching and reading. What I never ever aim for is to hurt of insult my opponents. I highly value every player I play against and show them 100% respect in each game. They help me get better and learn new things every day after each match of Gwent.
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