5 Cards You Should Bring Against Swarms!


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This originally started out as "5 Things That Are Hot and Not About Destiny" and was our regular weekly segment here at the YOUR Destiny website and meant to be a column on what has been going on, either, in Destiny generally, or in the head of the columnist specifically. It has now developed into an informal space for various reflections on Destiny from the perspective of the resident writers at YOUR Destiny. Here we deal with anything related to Star Wars Destiny.

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August 7, 2019.
TODAY'S COLUMNIST:
CLAUS STAAL

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5 CARDS YOU SHOULD BRING AGAINST SWARMS:

Written by CLAUS STAAL

Courtesy of the mad powers of The Hyperloops we now have to deal with EWOK Swarms ... ARGHH ... stop messing with me! Nah, seriously though ... first of all ... MIKE GEMME, you gorgeous man, congrats on the win! You've more than earned the title, putting the hours in and bringing a list that was innovative and has brought to the fore a new enemy! We salute you!

Here's new North American Champion showing off his winning team with that sweet "Yub Nub" smile! (Photo Credit: FFG Organized Play).Yub Nub Gemmejpg
If anyone has ever wondered about that "YUB NUB" expression, because I know I did (yes yes ... I know, I'm not a real Star Wars fan yadayadablah...), a little Google-Fu shows that it is also sometimes called "The Ewok Celebration" and is referencing the song played at the end of Return of the Jedi after the Battle of Endor where they sort of (won) ... sort of.

The Ewok deck designed by The Hyperloops is incredibly well-composed, very difficult to play against and I'd recommend you swoop over to their website to read the article written by Mike Gemme on the philosophy behind the deck, how to play it and his road to the North American Championship.

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The Ewok deck is such a beautiful piece of art, but it has plenty of silver bullets coming at it. In this article we'll be identifying some of these bullets, but I'll primarily be concerned with finding cards that are not just good against Swarm decks, but against all-comers. I'm not interested in cards that require you to change your entire deck or character setup, but rather try to look at cards that are likely to strengthen your deck regardless of the opposition ... if it destroys a million Ewoks in the process, well ... then we won't complain!

WARNING: This article will contain EXPLICIT CONTENT! There will be photos of dead Ewoks. They are not real Ewoks though and they are not really dead. It's costumes and in some instances teddy bears made to look like they are dead. It can nonetheless be disturbing for some people. There will also be blood splatter. This is not real blood. It is photo manipulated for dramatic effect and wishful thinking. This might also rattle a few readers.EXPLICIT WARNINGjpg

1. LEIA ORGANA - BOUSHH:

So ... speaking of not changing your character team completely ...

One of the character pairings that popped up immediately after the release of Convergence was Leia3/Padmé. LEIA ORGANA - BOUSHH, released in Across the Galaxy, hadn't seen a whole lot of play previously although a few attempts were made pairing her up with Yoda - Wizened Master, but that deck never really seemed to take off, while Padmé just seemed to be the sidekick Boushh had been waiting for, providing both consistency with 50% Focus sides and the possibility of finishing games by converting that to Indirect damage. It even took down one of the Standard events at the Galactic Qualifiers in Milton Keynes (UK).5 cards against swarms1jpgLeia Boushh really looks like she's in a good spot taking down swarm decks by the dozens. Because swarm decks run relatively light on mitigation, instead using their health and shields generated by Diplomatic Immunity as a resource to grind down their opponent, often your dice will be safe. Just steer around Easy Pickings and Our Situation Is Desperate. eLeia3/ePadmé also runs Impulsive which can be important in ensuring that the Specials get resolved! Get an early Underhanded Tactics or Moxie and you are ready to go!

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2. SUDDEN IMPACT:
As we are starting to see the game move towards more upgrades being played as well as a great number of 3+wide decks, including Jabba Supports, Aphra Droids, Hero Droids and obviously swarm decks, we should also expect a popularisation of great utility cards like SUDDEN IMPACT.5 cards against swarms2jpg
We used to include it in our eThrawn/eSnoke variants to go alongside cards like Planetary Bombardment, and while it's hard as nails with heavy duty supports it's no less devastating on upgrades with 3-4+ value damage sides and many of them are already widely used in decks that look strong in the meta. Upgrades and Supports like Entourage, L-S1 Handheld Cannon, Chewbacca's Blaster, Han Solo's Blaster are all extremely popular. The Handheld Cannon was in fact included in 8 of the 22 decks that made day 2 at the North American Championship 2019, and all of them have at least one 3+ damage side, while some have two sides! Same goes for an upgrade like Dagger of Mortis.

The wider an opponent's team the greater the damage multiplication. For a 3 damage side, that's going to be 6 damage on a 3wide team, while 6wide will take a hit of 12 damage! Seems pretty reasonable for 1 resource and it can even be resolved by removing an otherwise dead modified damage side.

3. SONIC DETONATORS:
There are not a lot of upgrades that can deal damage to multiple characters and some of them are pretty weak, i.e. Enfys Nest's Electroripper, while others are very restrictive, i.e. Force Wave, but a few can be extremely useful throughout a game.5 cards against swarms3jpg
SONIC DETONATORS are a one-time use against swarm decks, two against 3wide decks, but will deal 2 damage to each of an opponent's characters, and if you don't find another Sonic Detonator to overwrite it with, the 2 Disrupt side and the two Discard sides are not bad either. Remember that a lot of the crippling damage from Swarm decks, at least Ewoks and Hoth Troopers is damage out of hand from cards like Strength In Numbers, Glider Attack, Rigged Detonation and Inflict Pain, being able to get rid of those cards or the resources that can set them up can be extremely valuable. The V-1 Thermal Detonator is a cheaper alternative, but because you discard it from play when using the Special it's much inferior to the Sonic Detonators.ewoks deadjpg

4. ACT OF CRUELTY:

Almost every single Aphra Droids player that made it into day 2 at Gen Con 2019 had teched in ACT OF CRUELTY. The only one who had omitted it was in fact Brian LeCleir. It's a great tech, especially in a deck that can put plenty of Indirect damage on his opponent's characters often leading to them cowering behind Shields to keep them alive. The unblockable damage can be debilitating and lethal against low health characters like Swarms, it hits all characters, while the added bonus of discarding a card for each defeated character can be really ugly.5 cards against swarms4jpg
Nick Cuenca from The Hyperloops even spiced up the tech further by adding two Déjà Vu to his deck. One would almost suspect that he knew what fuzzy storm of killer bears were coming for him! Déjà Vu allows you to play Act of Cruelty twice, putting 2 unblockable damage on each character, even bypassing Shields from Diplomatic Protection, if it was triggered by one of the instances, while most likely forcing your opponent - if playing a swarm deck - to discard his entire hand in the process! Sweet ... I could see a number of deck where this little tech would fit in beautifully and it works wonders against most 3+ wide decks.

If you're playing Jabba the Hutt - Influential Kingpin you could even start fishing for your Act of Cruelty with his after ability. If you were hard mulliganing for it, you'd be looking at around 50% chance of finding one in your starting hand.

5. UMBARAN HOVER TANK:
The UMBARAN HOVER TANK is one of these vehicles that has never really received a lot of love. It has generally been outshone by other supports in the midrange category, and while its damage sides are not too impressive they are also not bad. 5 cards against swarms5jpg
It's obviously the Special which is the real strength of the Umbaran Hover Tank, especially if you manage to get a mod upgrade on it, but it's a payside and that has always felt REALLY BAD ... But a few things should maybe change our perspective on the Umbaran Hover Tank, not least the existence of Swarm decks.

One very significant change is the fact that most of the decks that would be capable of running the Umbaran Hover Tank would also be running Wat Tambor in their character team, and he really skews the balance for the Hover Tank, well for any support really, but it constitutes a massive change when a single die can put 2 damage on each of an opponent's characters! Doing it twice is nuts and if you are a 4 hp teddy bear it's lethal. It really is.
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THE BEST OF THE REST:
5 cards against swarms6jpgA few other cards to consider would be UNSHACKLE, which doesn't only work against Target Acquired, but also any other Downgrade X that you could encounter in various games and while they are not that popular at the moment there are a few good ones around. Being able to remove an early Target Acquired can easily save a character from inevitable defeat.

Also, Ewok decks rely on loads of damage out of hand cards and most of them require resources, and while it's not going to be a winning strategy just controlling your opponent's resources, it can buy you the time you need to set your boardstate and start killing teddy bears! The same applies for reliable Shield generation. That's not going to win you any games on its own, but if you can generate Shields to stem the bleeding and keep all your characters alive, you might just get the edge you need in those tightly fought games against swarm decks.yoda shieldsjpg

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