|A Game of Thrones LCG | Published 16 June 2011|
This week we will be discussing the next exciting Chapter Pack in the Secrets of Oldtown expansion, The Isle of Ravens! The fourth Chapter Pack in the Secrets of Oldtown expansion cycle adds more to the developing Maester and Chain themes, as well as to the rest of Westeros’ Great Houses.
But first we want to start with extra special thanks to the winners of our Regional event at the FFG Event Center–Will, Greg, and Lucas–for contributing their insight and recaps of the tournaments. We hope everyone else is also enjoying the Regional events in their area and have plenty of stories to tell, as well.
The Other Resource
One of the things that makes House Martell and House Targaryen tricky to play is their reliance on influence to pull off some of the better effects. For House Martell, the better effects in question are several scorching event cards that depend on influence, such as Red Vengeance (Princes of the Sun, F25). In the case of House Targaryen, influence powers ambush–the only House-specific keyword with a resource cost–and burn, like The Hatchlings' Feast (A Sword in the Darkness, F50).
While these effects can be useful, they do set up an another resource (aside from gold) that your deck will need and thus valuable deck space devoted to fulfilling that need. A nice way around this is the Knights of the Hollow Hill agenda (Mountains of the Moon, F59), which sets you up from the get-go with influence you can use right away, without having to worry about drawing it from your deck. Of course, you have to counterbalance that with the loss of your setup hand (not too big a deal) and the fact that other cards you control don't provide a gold bonus. This can actually be quite liberating if you don't need that much gold or use a lot of cost reducers.
House Targaryen has to work a little harder than House Martell to get influence, but neutral cards like Kingsroad Fiefdom (Queen of Dragons, F42), Advisor to the Crown (Queen of Dragons, F39), and especially The Red Keep (Tales from the Red Keep, F78) go a long way toward making influence work in a Targaryen deck.
Weapons of Choice
The Isle of Ravens introduces a new location card that will put the influence in your House Targaryen deck to good use. Plaza of Purification gives you the option of using influence instead of gold to marshall Army characters. This has the potential to open up some interesting choices for you.
For example, say you've got four gold and four influence without any pressing need for it because you're not holding any ambush or burn cards. Say you are also holding two characters in the marshaling phase, costing four gold each, one of which is an Army. Under normal circumstances, you'd probably only play one of those cards and let your influence sit idle. With Plaza of Purification, you can play both if you like. Or, you can spend the influence to bring out the Army and hang onto the gold to power effects like Drogon (Core Set, T111) or Viserion (Core Set, T112), or bring cards out of shadows. You can also split the cost of an Army between gold and influence if you think you might need a little of both later on in the round. If you're playing a WAR crest deck, having some extra gold handy might give you more incentive to play Mercenary Contract (The Battle of Blackwater Bay, F111) and let Daemon Blackfyre (Tales from the Red Keep, F73), Rhaegar Targaryen (Battle of Ruby Ford, F82), or Khal Drogo (Queen of Dragons, F21) attack and defend without kneeling.
An interesting card that also plays into this alternate resource stream for House Targaryen is Myrish Villa (Queen of Dragons, F31). You can put Myrish Villa into play in any phase, for example, after you've done all your burn and ambush, but still have some influence left over. Its value is in using it to reduce the cost to put Targaryen cards into play. In summer, kneel an Eastern Fiefdoms (Core Set, T127) to play a Myrish Villa and double your cost reduction in the same marshaling phase.
Given that a Targaryen deck will probably be using a little influence anyway, Plaza of Purification gives it another use, and hopefully more options with which to bludgeon your opponents.
Based on George R.R. Martin's bestselling fantasy epic A Song of Ice and Fire, A Game of Thrones: The Card Game, playable by 2-4 players, brings the beloved heroes, villains, locations, and events of the world of Westeros to life through innovative game mechanics and the highly strategic game play. The Living Card Game format allows players to customize their gaming experience with monthly Chapter Pack expansions to the core game.
Knights of the Hollow Hill agenda looks a very interesting card indeed. Can't wait to see some decks built around it!
That plaza is awesome between that and QotD been a real push for Targ Army cards.
Ambush is such a great keyword, and being able to play cards using influence is one of the things I love about Targ. The Plaza is sweet!