Shadowfist Deck: Armas Mas Grandes by Bruce Neiger and Leonard King
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[posted 17 Apr 2010; updated 20 Apr 2010]
Posted with permission. Thanks Bruce and Leonard!
This deck built around Senoritas and We Need Bigger Guns was developed by Bruce Neiger and Leonard King. Bruce and Leonard collaborated by email; they're physically separated by about 10,000 miles. Here's Bruce's current list (Leonard's is slightly different)
- Brave Villagers (3)
- Ranchers (3)
- Punks (5)
- Senoritas (4) - engine cards
- Blasting Crew (3) - Site ping and Jammer ramps
- Dr. Amanda Snow (2) - star performer late game, with sites in your smoked pile
- Golden Gunman (1) - salt to taste. His name sold me, here.
0 Cost (11)
- We Need Bigger Guns (3) - engine cards;
- Both Guns Blazing (2) - a third is a consideration
- Dirk Wisely's Gambit (1) - handy alt-power gen and a free resource;
- Scrounging (3) - obvious;
- Secret Pact (1) - great card for alt-power, card flow and recursion;
- Never Surrender (1) - just a great card
- Tommy Gun (4) - Engine cards
- Golden Comeback (2)
- "Is That All You Got" (1)
Recursion: While the Senoritas are the star of the deck, once you get to the mid-late game where recursion shines, you are actually a touch more likely to want to recurse Dr. Amanda and spending one more power to have that option seems better.
- Single Action Devolver (2) -works unbelievably well at controlling the board. Dr. Amanda returns it to play.
- Who's the Monkey Now (1):
Event protection. A couple of Nerve Gas or Tortured Memories could ruin our whole day, but even the threat of this card can make an opponent hold back their denial. The need for more copies depends on the environment. There are days where you want more copies. Other times a single one just sits in your hand.
Feng Shui Sites
- Bountiful Fields (2)
- University Library (1) - Card flow: since we're loaded with 0-and-1-cost cards, anything that lets us move through them might be strong.
- Smiling Heaven Lake (1) - handy for getting out the first Senoritas
- Festival Circle (2) - more Event protection
- Golden Mile (1)
- Phlogiston Mine (1)
- Moebius Gardens (2)
Three fairly randomly chosen APG sites
- Sacred Heart Hospital (1) - our hitters are just large enough to benefit.
- University Library (1) - card turnover, which helps mitigate the deck size
That's 54 cards - pretty tight. This deck needs a quick start, and that means getting out both factions, a second Dragon resource, two+ FSS quickly and THAT meant keeping things small and consistent.
A Dragon / Jammer Gun deck built around the combo of Tommy Gun-toting Senoritas who "Need Bigger Guns" (Hence the title of the deck). One of the authors (Leonard) stumbled upon a message on the Shadowfist forum.
"I should point out that Colin has a Dra/Jam Senoritas deck that is incredibly powerful and reliable (get yourself a Senorita with two We Need Bigger Guns and two Tommy Guns and see what happens!)."
We haven't seen Colin's deck, but we thank him for the inspiration.
The exciting part to Leonard was that Senoritas made guns behave the way they "should" - that is, the guns would actually shoot people. .
Senoritas have a good power-to-fighting ratio at 5-for-three, at two resources. Their ability is nice, clearing paths to sites with the proper support. The first obvious support cards are the Tommy Guns. Sadly, you can't combine the two cards' abilities. If you turn the guns for their own ability to do 1 damage, you cannot turn them to activate that of the Senoritas. We are more than compensated by the guns' second ability - to unturn when a character is smoked.
The other key card, We Need Bigger Guns, makes the whole combo bigger and more explosive. The downside is pretty significant though, as the cost is a second faction. Is it worth it? We think so. Mostly, it makes the core concept of the deck (shooting people with Senoritas and guns) much better, and it opens up some fairly clutch Jammer cards to round out the deck.
Senoritas make a fine basis, but they don't need to work in a vacuum. There are two standouts: Dr. Amanda Snow, and Blasting Crew. Dr. Amanda shows herself as a true star performer. When the Senoritas leave the scene (and your opponents will be looking for various ways to effect that), they take their guns with them. That is not so bad, since Dr. Amanda lets you get those guns back, without the help of any other cards.
Blasting Crew has two nice features: besides hitting for 4 and benefiting from WNBG on their site ping, they are useful Jammer ramps.
There are a lot of moving parts, but needing to put them together actually makes the deck fairly easy to play. Get your cards flowing early to get to those parts: Two sites, two Dragon and at least one Jammer resources, and a Senoritas, with any two or three of WNBG, BFoG, TG or SA Devolver. Clear the board a bit. Add in a few foundations or a second hitter and clear the board while taking sites.
Both Bruce and Leonard have played the deck a few times, in multiplayer. Leonard piloted the deck to third place in the finals of the Australian Championships. Bruce has managed to get into the finals of his local PG twice, and has won with it, once.
Some of the benefits
- Getting the Senoritas out, fairly well kitted out with a WNBG and a Tommy Gun happens a fair portion of the time due to the small deck size and the good card flow.
- Toughness can make the deck cry a bit. There isn't quite enough toughness out there, yet, to compromise the basic deck thesis, though.
- There is still a lot of denial out there. Holding a WtMN or having a Festival Circle in the front row is a nice feeling. That just leaves you to ponder Fox Passes and other denial sites.
- Finally, a turned Character, whether loaded with guns or not, cannot intercept at another location. There have been plenty of times where, to stop a win, both authors wished for just one more state on their Senoritas one that gives mobility, like Big Rig.
If you try the
deck, or if you have any ideas to improve it let us know. We'll be monitoring
the Shadowfist forum.
[writeup by Leonard King and Bruce Neiger]