The Dark Side's Deadliest Weapon
Kicking back and drinking some root beer, a friend and I were bouncing deck ideas and general strategy off of each other. We were tired of seeing the meta-game of the Light Side dominate the Dark Side, so we set out to shut those meta-games down. The biggest problem, we felt, was the Light Side's ability to use activated abilities, including Chewbacca (G), Coruscant Air Buses, Jawa Sandcrawlers, Millennium Falcons, Luke's X-wings, and Yoda (E), just to name a few. We had to find a way to make the Light Side pay for depending so heavily on activated abilities. So we decided to take a spin at Force denial.
If we could limit the Light Side's Force, and make them really focus on when to use their little amount of Force, it could sway the game toward the Dark Side.
In Space, we tried using the Dark Side's best units to kill such opposing units as Luke's X-wing, the Millennium Falcon, and IG-2000 (A). Realizing that the Light Side had little to no Force for most of the game, we also decided to run the neutral Falcon (certain that we'd win, if it were contested). This was a major advantage, because we could keep their Falcon out of the Space arena while we killed everything else; it also made them think a lot more when it came to using Force.
The Falcon could not do it alone, though. It needed another heavy hitter to go along with it. We had been paying attention to the Light Side meta-game and had seen tons of IG-2000 (A)s. IG-2000 could do a lot of damage, it was neutral, and it was in almost every Light Side deck we had seen. It was the perfect match.
However, another problem we ran into was our units getting slaughtered before they could in turn slaughter everything, so we had to find a way to negate damage. We eventually found two cost-effective TIE Fighters (DS-61-9 and DS-73-3) that really swung the game in our favor.
Typically, we had trouble generating enough build points in the first round. We needed cheap Ground units so that we could Departure Time them and it wouldn't hurt that much, and so we could draw more cards during the original setup. For this, we found the perfect units in the Bespins. Not only can Bespins fight, but they also give your opponent another option for spending Force. If you can draw them into using their Force, that helps set them up for defeat.
Another problem we ran into was drawing. We weren't getting all the cards we needed at the right time, so we had to have something. We decided on the ever-dependable Jawa Sandcrawler. It was extremely cost effective. It could hang around a few turns to get us cards, get us build points for having a unit in each arena, or stall until we could build up another arena. Plus, after it took 5 or 6 points of damage, we could Departure Time it and build something else.
This arena is key to this deck. One card is a must: Nexu. With four of them in our deck, we normally had at least one out after setup. There was a problem, though -- they couldn't deal out enough damage to win the arena. So we added Kouhun, a great unit. For 2 build, you can do 5 damage, and when your opponent doesn't have any Force with which to evade or prevent, it makes the unit even deadlier.
Although this duo can deal out damage, if the Dark Side doesn't kill all of the Light Side's Characters in the first round, the Light Side normally takes the arena. So our Force Denial deck still needed something.
That something is Darth Vader. Darth Vader (C) was meant for this deck. For 5 build, you can get him out easily. He can intercept for the other Characters and take some damage, and when he dies, you can just play another one. Darth Vader (A) also works for this deck. He can stack with (C), deal more damage, and has more health. True, his build cost is higher, but for the occasional times that Anakin is out, piloting or fighting in the Character arena, it helps.
This is another crucial portion of the Force Denial deck. We added Departure Time for the build disparity that occurred most of the time in the first round. Splinter the Republic is used to get out a third or fourth Kouhun, a second or third Nexu, and so on. It's really helpful in many situations.
Getting Locations was a problem, though. We never seemed to have the right Location at the right time, so we decided to do something about it by adding Probe the Galaxy.
This is undoubtedly the most important part of the Force Denial deck. The main Location is Cloud City Prison. This allows you to keep your opponent's Force at 4, and -- with Capture Obi Wan and Carbon Freeze -- there are a lot of turns in which they're left with a Force of 0 or 1.
Carbon Freezing Chamber is another amazing Location, especially if you're having trouble in Character or with Pilots. When I used the card, the Light Side basically lost 3 Force each round, and when they couldn't pay it, they were gone. It's really kind of evil how well the card works in this deck. When mixed with Capture Obi-Wan and Carbon Freeze, it begins to get really ugly.
Thoughts or comments? Visit the message board thread for this article here.