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Deck Starters: Diplomats, Inc.

I like to change decks frequently. Sure, there are a few favorites that I always put together, but for the most part, I like to try new ideas, regardless of how competitive they are. The Star Wars Trading Card Game has a lot of cards, so why limit yourself to playing the same ones over and over? Here's another Deck Starter idea to try out when you need a change of pace from your normal decks.

Let's take a look at an often overlooked subtype -- Diplomats. In the real world, diplomats have to be flexible and often perform many different tasks. Why should Star Wars TCG diplomats be any different? We don't want to limit ourselves to just the Character arena, so let's make sure we have options. And of course, real-world diplomats try to solve problems peacefully and without confrontation, but what diplomat in the Star Wars universe was passive?

In the Revenge of the Sith set, we get a nice little card that helps out our diplomats: Padme Amidala (H). Stat wise, diplomats aren't too bad for their cost. Padme's text is the real payoff; your opponent can't attack a Diplomat unless they pay 2 Force.

In case the Dark Side doesn't want to battle in the Character arena, the rest of our diplomatic corps should be versatile. Padme's daughter fits the role perfectly, and you can choose from a plethora of Princess Leia cards. Which one works best for you? That depends on how you set up the rest of your deck.

In this article, we'll look at Princess Leia (K). She has a stat that's consistent with most of her versions: Whenever your opponent's units would damage Leia, you can prevent that damage unless your opponent pays 2 Force. So if Leia stays in the Character arena, the Dark Side player must pay 2 Force to attack her and 2 more to damage her. What makes this version of Leia versatile is that she's also a speeder pilot. Not only does she give a speeder +20 speed and Lucky 1, but your opponent must pay 2 Force to damage her speeder, too.

Lando Calrissian is another versatile diplomat. Like Leia, he has many versions that you can use, depending on how you set up for the other arenas. Let's look at his Lando Calrissian (I) version. Right off, I like the Lucky 2, but he's also a Starfighter and Transport pilot, giving it Accuracy 1 and Lucky 2. Got a Millennium Falcon or Luke's X-wing in space? He's your guy. Of course, if you have to use him to fight in the Character arena, he may be a little slow, but his Lucky 2 will come in handy, and with 5 health, hopefully he'll be around long enough to lend a hand in the fight.

Need an extra Force, build point, or card? Let Finis Valorum (B) provide all of that for you. After all, diplomats are civil servants, so why not let them work for you?

Running a Rebel deck? Mon Mothma (A) fits the bill here, though her build cost is somewhat high in my opinion. At least she'll require an additional 2 Force to be attacked and can either reduce the cost of Rebel units by 1 or give them +1 power and accuracy. Team her up with Princess Leia (H) and Vendetta, and you have a pretty nasty combo.

Since diplomats have no built-in evade, they're going to take some damage. Rapid Recovery is not only a healing card, but you also can untap your diplomat and let them attack again, all for only 1 Force.

If I have to fight it out in the Character arena, one final card I like to have is the Max Rebo Band (A). Granted, Max isn't a diplomat, but he makes the Dark Side pay 1 extra Force for every attack. Because Max will probably be the first target, you'll want to pack Vendetta or other damage prevention cards to make sure he sticks around long enough to be useful.

Now, let's look at making the Dark Side spend even more Force if they want to do some damage. In a previous article, I mentioned the popular Forests of Endor. With this card in play, the Dark Side will need to pay 4 Force to damage any unit piloted by Princess Leia (K), and 2 Force to damage all other units. If the Dark Side wants to fight in the Ground arena, chances are good they won't have any Force left to attack your characters or bring in any Hidden Cost units. And with the location costing 4 build, they'll have to spend some build to replace it.

A few other diplomats exist to serve you, including Momow Nadon (A) in case you face a Stormtrooper deck. Check them out and see which ones work best for you.

Diplomats do have a down side, of course. They're susceptible to direct damage without causing the Dark Side to spend Force other than playing their Battle or Mission cards that deal that damage. Also, Dissolve the Senate is their Achilles' heel and will ruin this deck quickly. However, part of the fun of using diplomats is the look on your opponent's face as he tries to figure out what deck you're playing.

Until next time, this is Rogue 9, standing by . . .

About the Author

Tim Bresnan is a long time Star Wars fan and player of the Star Wars Trading Card Game. Located in the heart of the Midwest, Tim sees his role as teacher and recruiter for the card game. On any given day of the work week, you'll find him spending his lunch time playing a game of Star Wars TCG with coworkers and fellow Star Wars enthusiasts. Tim is a self-proclaimed noncompetitive player and enjoys creating themed decks that are just fun to play. Check out his other Star Wars TCG articles:

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