Article 5D- Competitive DS Deck- Walkers by Chris Gogolen (Please note, this deck/article has not been updated since the Players Committee’s reset of all Virtual Cards)
This is another thematic deck based around one of the most classic scenes from the film, the Battle of Hoth. This objective underwent some errata late last year, but it is still a very solid and powerful deck. It is primarily a ground based deck, but has a decent space package and can compete in both arenas well.
Goal of the deck
The deck is designed to quickly destroy the Main Power Generators, causing 3 force loss that cannot be reduced. It then does a combination of force draining and direct damage from two supporting cards- You May Start Your Landing and We’re in Attack Position Now. You May Start Your Landing causes 1 force loss for each Hoth marker site you control with an AT-AT, and you have 3 sites (3rd, 5th, 6th markers) that you will be trying to hold down during the game. We’re in Attack Position Now causes 1 force loss for each battleground site you control with a Commander (ISB commander and Igar) or General (Veers or Nevar) while you occupy the related system. The 3rd marker is always a battleground in this deck, and when your objective is on the 7 side, the 5th and 6th markers gain a Light force icon, and thus become battlegrounds too. You are going to need to try and hold Hoth to keep your Objective on the 7 side and to avoid paying to drain from Battle Plan, so you might as well try and cause some extra damage for doing so.
1. Knowledge & Defense-V + 15 Defensive Shields
2. Imperial Occupation/Imperial Control-V
4. 1st Marker-V
5. 5th Marker-V
6. Imperial Decree
7. Prepared Defenses
8. Endor Shield-V
9. You may Start your Landing-V(a Tatooine rare)
10.Ni Chuba Na-v ( A Tatooine common)
11.6th Marker (hoth 2-player game)
13.Cloud City Prison-V
14.Victory (V from Victory class Star Destroyer- A New Hope)
15.Slave 1, Symbol of Fear (V from Slave 1- Cloud City)
17.Grand Moff Tarkin-v
18.The Emperor’s Reach-V (virtual from Major Turr Phenir Death Star 2)
20.Grand Admiral Thrawn
21.ISB Sector Commander (V from Lt. Tanbris Premiere)
22.Veers-v (Hoth 2 player game)
23.General Nevar (V from Commander Gherant Dagobah)
28.Boba Fett, Prepared Hunter (V from Hidden Weapons Jabba’s Palace)
29.Jango Fett, the Assassin(V from Lando System Dagobah)
Admiral’s Order: 2
30.We’re in Attack Position
31.We’re in Attack Position
32.Do They have a Code Clearance? (Coruscant Rare)
33.Image of the Dark Lord-V
35.Hoth Blockade (Virtual from Death Squadron Hoth)
36.Imperial Propaganda-V (if you don’t own one, replace with Imperial Decree-V. Decree is nonunique, so you can play both versions in the same deck)
37.Alert My Star Destroyer
38.Protocol Failure (V from Blasted Droid- Cloud City)
41.Blizzard 4-v (Reflections 3- if you don’t own one add another Imperial Walker)
42.Blizzard 6-v (Virtual from Prepare for a Surface Attack- Reflections 3)
44.Imperial Walker (hoth 2-player game)
45.Operational as planned- V
50.Stop Motion- V
55.A dark time for the Rebellion- V
56.He Hasn’t come back yet
57.Imperial Command x2 (if you don’t own, replace with Imperial Justice-v and another card from the list below)
60.Target the Main Generator
Cards to look to acquire to adjust the deck:
Imperial Artillery x2-3- another source of direct damage, and having card with a 7 destiny number is rarely a bad thing.
We must accelerate our Plans x2/Blockade Flagship Bridge- these are just a different way to play the deck. If you use these, then you take out the Fetts/Slave 1/Prison and add another Star Destroyer or two, and add Imperial Domination-V. Both methods of playing the deck are good, some people just have preferences.
Darth Maul with Lightsaber x2 /The Phantom Menace- I personally don’t think the deck needs these cards, but again, it’s a preference thing. I have seen decklists using these cards for situations where the lightside is hiding indoors at the Cantina or one of the Naboo sites, and the Walkers aren’t able to do anything. I prefer to use U-3po and Image of the Dark Lord to negate that force drain. Sgt. Irol-V can also be added to help with situations like that.
Other cards to consider adding:
Control or Control/Set for Stun- good for cancelling Imperial Atrocity and protecting your direct damage. The set for stun can also be used for low ability guys like Admiral Ackbar, Chewie, and Lando.
Close Call-V- good for reducing their battle destiny to help keep your Walkers alive
Imperial Domination- good for retrieving some of your lost characters back. You have decent power on the ground so you tend to win some battles
Outflank-V- for those situations where you don’t outpower them, might as well bring some friends
Blizzard Scout 4- V- its gametext works well with At-ats and it can react around Hoth
Walker Garrison-V- some players prefer this version of the card for the optional use to cancel a force drain.
Imbalance/Kintan Strider- There are only two weapons that are commonly played that concern you- Leia’s
Blaster and Chewie’s Bowcaster. Leia’s gun only hits your Walkers using Blaster Proficiency(but when it does your walker is immediately lost). This card cancels Proficiency, and does some useful other things.
Force Push-v- getting a key card out of your force pile can definitely impact the results of a game.
This deck has great efficiency in the setup turns of the game, as it pulls just about all of the key cards it needs right away.
After you draw your starting hand and are ready to start the game, you will search your reserve deck and upload a number of cards. Use the 5th marker to take Tempest 1 into hand, and use Endor Shield to take Veers and Nevar into hand. Then use the Objective to take the At-at cannon into hand(or the epic event if you already have the At-at cannon). You could also get the 3rd marker and walker garrison, but I recommend holding off on that. That gives you more than 12 cards in your hand, and if your opponent happens into an opening hand Grimtaash, they could play it to put random cards back from your hand, and you would have wasted your Once per game pulls. You don’t need the 3rd marker this turn, so you can get it next turn.
Turn 1– You will activate at least 6 force( 2 from hoth, 2 from 5th marker, 1 from Ni Chuba Na and 1 for you). Deploy Veers to the 5th marker for 1 force, and Nevar to the 5th marker for 2 force. Use Nevar to search your deck and deploy the 6th marker (there is a small chance you activated this, so if you have an interrupt to search your deck first, go ahead and play that before wasting Nevar). Then go ahead and deploy Tempest 1 with the cannon on it to the 6th marker for your remaining 3 force (-1 from the Objective, -1 from Veers, -1 from the 6th marker). Your cards move for free between the 5th and 6th markers. Move Nevar to the 6th marker, have him get inside and pilot Tempest 1. Since he is now piloting alone, you can use his other once per game text, and look at your opponent’s hand. Once you finish with that, move Tempest 1 to the 5th marker. Nevar moves to the passenger spot and Veers jumps inside to pilot it. That is a very busy first turn, but it should go like that 99% of the time and you still have all 8 of your opening hand cards.
Turn 2– before you active, take the 3rd marker and Walker garrison into hand, and take Target the Main Generator with the Objective. Then you activate at least 7 force. During your control phase, cause 1 damage from You May Start your landing. Based on what you saw in your opponent’s hand and how they took their first turn, you can either hold off on moving to the 3rd marker, or you can deploy some backup and go for it. If you have another At-at, deploy it(-1 from obj and -1 from veers) to the 3rd marker. Then move Tempest 1 over to the 3rd marker, and have Nevar get out and into the 2nd walker. That should give you about 17 power at the location, which is going to be intimidating for the LS to attack on turn 2. You are now ready to attempt to blow up the Main Power Generator.
Turn 3– you will activate at least 9 force. During your control phase, you can attempt to shoot the Generator. You add the ability of your pilot( 3 for Veers), plus 1 for each Hoth site you control( probably the 3rd marker). Because you are firing a weapon, you also get 2 other bonuses- Tempest 1 adds 1 to its Weapon destiny draws, as does the gametext on the 3rd marker itself. So your total is 6 + a destiny draw, and you need to be greater than 8. Of the cards not on the table, 27 of them are a 3 or higher for destiny, so you have a pretty good chance of being successful.
Rest of game
Once you blow up the shield, your goal is to get set up at the system. You can try and get the Fetts down to hold the system for a little while, or use one of the two Star Destroyers. Flagship Executor will have the most staying power. You can use the Defensive shield Fanfare to pull Alert my Star Destroyer into your hand. Then you just deploy either Tarkin, Vader, Piett, or Thrawn to the 6th marker(so you get the -1 from the site and -1 from Veers), and then shuttle them up to the ship. You play Alert my Star Destroyer on that character, and now your ship is completely immune to attrition. The Executor deploys -4 with Hoth Blockade out, so you can deploy that for 8 force, and one of the other characters for 2-4 force and then just pay 1to shuttle up. Thrawn would be ideal so that you get a 2nd battle destiny and can play Imperial Command when needed, but any of them will work just fine.
This will conclude the deck breakdowns for a little while. The next few articles will return to focusing on things like game strategy, deck building choices, tournament play, etc…
“The shield will be down in moments” ~ General Veers