You may recall on the previous installment of Taking the White I talked about Tyrell fealty as an impending powerhouse deck, this week I bring an update on my pet project rush deck and have a brief tournament report from an SC I took second in with the deck.
The store was my own local game store in Madison WI so in addition to playing in the tournament I was the TO. In light of this I decided to play something fast so I could finish my games quickly and be able to enter scores, make rulings, etc. The Tyrell Lords of the Crossing deck I played is a slightly slower and more versatile version of an earlier Crossing build I made which I consider to be the fastest rush deck in the current meta.
The basic premise of the deck is relatively simple, flood the board with as many characters as you need (try to hold back a few if you suspect your opponent has a reset or two) and win whichever challenge you need to win that round scooping up as much power as you can. The version I played at the Store championship sacrificed a bit of its rushing potential for a little more control over bad matchups, which at the end of the day, I feel was a mistake.
The original build I had, used three superior claim in lieu of both Hand’s Judgments and one Put to the Sword. While the Hand’s judgments are nice in theory, the often do remarkably little for the deck in any matchup other than targ. The most my Hand’s judgment did all day was cancel an opponent’s Hand’s Judgment on Lady Sansa’s Rose, and had my Hand’s Judgment been a Superior claim, I would have been able to either bait out the Hand’s Judgment with the Superior Claim, or would have just played the Superior claim after and still gotten two power, either way it would not have really affected the game. Later in the day however, I had two Hand’s Judgments in my hand the entire game and ended up making it to 14 power before losing.
Anecdotes aside, I think the deck really shines best when it is used as a full on rush deck. The combination of three superior claim with three Lady Sansa’s Rose results in some truly ludicrous power gains. The knight theme really compliments this, as Tourney for the King can make for an excellent closer.
Given that it was my first time as a TO and my first time using a deck I had been crafting for a long time in a competitive environment, I was pretty stoked for the Madison Store Championship. Once everyone arrived we had just enough people to have four rounds of Swiss with a cut to the top four. My first game was against a deck I had personally put a lot of time into, and had won a store championship with previously, Lanni Rose.
Game 1 (Lannister Banner of the Rose): Things started out on a less than ideal note as I flopped a solid three characters but drew into zero while drawing back up. Staring at a hand of zero characters I immediately grabbed my Summons and flipped it as plot one. Luckily enough almost all of my juicey characters were in the top ten cards of the deck so I grabbed Hobber Redwyne so I could turn one character into two and sped forward into marshaling. With a lucky kingsroad top-deck I played out both Hobber and Margaery and got off to a solid start. My opponent was doing pretty well himself but my turn two play of knight of flowers and my two Lady Sansa’s Roses ended the game quickly.
Game 2 (Stark Fealty): By turn two of this game I had Knight of Flowers, Randyll and Margaery out with the latter two duped. Despite a few dumb mistakes on my part (putting mare in heat on an Arbor Knight while Grey Wind was out) I managed to win the game by turn three by focusing heavily on power challenges.
Game 3 (Baratheon Banner of the Rose): I know right away that this was going to be a tough game. If there is one thing that Lords of the Crossing does not handle well it is Baratheon. Against Stannis the Mantis and Big Bobby B. the rush of weenies that Lord’s of the Crossing can pump out just doesn’t hold up. Despite a turn two Bob and Mel I managed to keep a steady gain of power coming my way, I had a voltron knight of flowers going for a solid turn before my Mare in Heat was confiscated. I got within one power of winning (here’s where I had those two hand’s judgments) but couldn’t quite close it, eventually I was unable to do a challenge without Bob and Randyll winning the game on defense with renown so I threw in the towel, bringing me to 2-1.
Game 4 (Targaryen Banner of the Lion): The matchup goes about 50/50 for the deck but I just saw all of the pieces I needed immediately. Between Knight of Flowers, Randyll, and two Lady Sansa’s Roses the game was over on turn two or three. He had Tyrion out right away but couldn’t find any events to use his gold for.
Top 4 (Greyjoy Banner of the Dragon): This was a very strange deck piloted by a friend of mine. It was essentially a reasonable Greyjoy deck that had Targ cards to fill up its lack of intrigue icons that randomly decided to throw in a bunch of pillage tech and Dothraki Crone. Both of our boards can very large and it essentially came down to a slug fest between Balon and the Knight of Flowers which I eventually won with some casually tossed Roses.
Final (Targ Banner of the Lion): I don’t know what it is with me and finals but apparently I’m terrible at set-up while playing in them. After I mulliganed away a fairly bad set-up of Paxter, the Mander and a reducer chud with two mare in heats in hand, I drew what I will say is by far the worst set-up hand that Tyrell Lords of the Crossing has ever produced for me. My choices were Hobber Redwyne with Mare in Heat and Little bird or The Knight of Flowers with Mare in heat and Little bird. With no economy to speak of I decided to put down Hobber as I figured knight of flowers had a better chance of keeping me in the game although retrospectively KoF may have been the correct choice. My opponent naturally flipped Marched to the Wall and after playing Jaime turn one and Drogo turn two the game was over before it started.
If you’re looking to play rush then look no further. This deck is incredibly effective and will grab insane amounts of power. It is also probably the deck that I have had the most fun with in my entire thrones career. There’s nothing like playing two Lady Sansa’s Rose in the same phase on two different Arbor knights, or swinging in with Randyll Tarly and immediately standing him. If you want a fast, fun deck then Tyrell Lords of the Crossing is the build for you.