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The Gauntlet – Updated 1/14/19

The team at Artificery has compiled an extensive list of the most competitive decks in the format right now. These are the decks you need to test against to succeed at the next competitive event you attend. We have attempted to list these in relative tiers from most successful to least competitive, but remember this is totally subjective and will depend on what decks are prominent in your local meta.

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Regional Lists – Updated 1/14/2019

The picture I used for the original gauntlet was more prescient then I initially thought. After this last weekend what we have seen is Vader, Vader, and Vader. Winning 11 Regionals so far (the next closest is tied for 2), Vader has become the a true terror to behold. The task will be to create a deck that can consistently beat Vader without just straight losing to Big Vehicles or Mill.

TIER 1 – Regional Winners

eVader/Greedo – 11 Regional Wins – Connecticut Regional Champion – Cjenso

Another weekend of Regionals and another weekend dominated by Vader. Vader is the undeniable gatekeeper for any deck you plan on bringing to a competitive event. I have updated the Vader List to reflect a list more tuned to the evolving meta. This is the list that navigated an extremely competitive pool of competitors to win the Connecticut Regional. It may be worth checking out the other Vader lists that have won large regionals such as the Alabama Regional and the Dallas Regional.

Alternative Slot-ins: Force Speed, Ancient Lightsaber, and Boundless Ambition.

eBeckett/eCiena AR – 2nd Place Toronto Reigonal – Separatist Vulkar

As anyone who has been listening to me on discord knows, this is my jam. It hits fast, has a huge ceiling, and has a lot of answers to your opponent’s event control. Beckett can amass resources in a hurry and you’ll need those for your Firespray reactivation and paid sides. There are many different ways to run this deck as well. The decklist that I took to the Utah Regional and made it to the semi-finals is significantly different from this one.

Alternative Slot-ins: Handheld L-S1 Cannon, Paid Off, Entangle

eYoda/Hired Gun/Gungan AR – NC Regional Winner – Dustin13862

This is another list to watch out for. The gameplan is to slam down that Shadowcaster and use your R2s and Yoda’s focus to hit that 6R side multiple times in a round. It also protects its primary engine with Shield Generators and slots in N-1s for the mirror or to allow for more SC activation.

Alternative Slot-ins: C3PO, Vandalize, and Suppressive Fire.

eLeia3/eYoda – Atlanta Regional Winner – FlacidBaron from Artificery

Alternative slot-ins: EMP Grenades, Vandalize, and R2D2.

This is the deck that Artificery crewmember FlacidBaron took to the pre-Snoke Nerf Atlanta Regionals. He went 5-0 against Thrawn/Snoke with it. In the current meta there would likely be some major changes to combat the efficacy of the Vader Decks and some of the bursty 2-character lists. Considerations to add in would be EMP Grenades, Coercion, Double Cross, and Ancient Light Sabers.

Mill Apocalypse – Regional Winners

eLeia2/eYoda Taking Ground – Virginia Regional Winner – Runningonion

This deck took the 64 player Virginia Regional. Utilizing key meta counters like EMP Grenades, Force Jumps, and Suppressive Fires it was well-suited to take people by surprise. Yes people the mill apocalypse is back, so be prepared to handle these decks. A similar deck also placed second at the 64 person Dallas Tournament.

Alternative Slot-ins: Flames of the Past, At Odds, and First Aid.

eYoda/Cassian/Anakin2 – Nebraska Regional Winner

The actual list that won the Nebraska Regional has not been posted, but this was provided by our resident mill-player Xerohour. Nebraska only had 20 players, but a similar deck also took Top 4 at the 64-person Virginia Regional, which shows that this deck still has legs. With some notable event inclusions from Across the Galaxy with At Odds and Your Were My Friend, this deck continues to do what it does best: mill your deck fast and survive int he process with Force Illusion, Second Chance, and shield generation.

Small Regional Winners

eHan3/eBiggs AR – 13-Players Brisbane Australia Regional Winner

Credit for this list goes to Hidden Motive 64’s Top 8 List from Chicago’s Regional, because I could not find the actual Australian Regional Winning list. This glass cannon list aims to put the Falcon on the board immediately and use the synergy of Biggs and the Falcon to activate all 3 units at once. The deck keeps tempo, hits you in the face, then jumps out or controls your dice before claiming to prevent a counter-strike against its squishy characters.

Alternative Slot-ins: N-1, Drop In, R2 Astromech

eSnoke/Aphra/Battle Droid BR – Hawaii Regional Winner – bitzerpt

This is the list that won the 9-person Hawaii Regional. This is entirely the old shell with a couple of ATG add-ins like Vigilance and Wanton Destruction.

Alternative Slot-ins: Force Illusion, Tech Team, and Reprogram

eIden/eTalzin AR – Ontario Regional Winner – OpenBoats

This deck ended up taking a small 13-person regional in Ontario (Tornoto?) Canada and another version-which has not been posted yet-was a finalist in the Green Bay Regional. The list focus on dropping an early cheap Arc and then using the consistent die sides of Iden with Talzin’s dice manipulation to push damage.

Non-Regional Winning Tier 1 Decks

eTalzin/eBeckett PC – Finalist at the Virginia Regional – punchitchewie

Much like the eBeckett/eCiena deck, this aims to get out a big support-Vader’s Fist-and then hit you with more damage than you can withstand. This deck also runs a large vent package, and with the inclusions of Force Illusion and Witch Magic has more durability than its counter-part. Beckett’s rifle is a huge first-turn play if you can’t get the Fist on the table, forcing your opponent to lose a resource and threatening good damage sides.

Alternative Slot-ins: Dark Counsel, Darth Vader’s TIE Advance, Stifle, and Slave I

eTarkin/eSnoke – Conneticut Regional Finalist – JustJack

Golden Dice Gaming’s JustJack took this to New Hampshire with only 2 practice games and ended up climbing into the final round against a field predictably dominated by Vader. With the ability to dish out massive amounts of indirect damage each round and the insanely consistent die-sides that Snoke and Tarkin bring with their Focus, this deck can be overwhelming for a 2-character list. There are alternative ways to build this that do not rely on the holocron package, but the package seems to have the most efficiency.

Alternative Slot-ins: Frag Grenade, Beguile, and EMP Grenade

ePlo/Padawan/Padawn – Finalist North Dakota Regional

Credit for this list goes to Eric Wainwright (surprise, surprise). This was his Artificery Season 7 Winning List. Once again this is primarily the same old shell with some new ATG add-ins: Treasured Lightsaber and Training Staff.

Alternative Slot-ins: Hidden Motive, Pacify, Shoto Lightsaber, and Vibroknife

eKit/eAayla – Finalist Brisbane Regional and Semi-Finalist Nebraska

Credit for this decklist goes to Nick “Thegandork” as he was the original creator of the deck. It has had some success with Kit’s incredible ability and Aayla’s amazing die-sides, but it suffers from what all blue hero suffers from. If it doesn’t keep tempo it is in trouble.

eHan/eQi’Ra No Allegiance – New Hampshire Semi-Finalist New Hampshire Regional – Lusiphur

This deck has consistently made it to the top 8 in numerous Regionals, but cannot seem to make the cut to the finals. This specific list veered from maximizing Han’s special for more neutral upgrades and events. However, some of the more effective lists have really focused on a high hero event ration to ensure they use Han’s ability to keep netting resources. This deck in whatever variation can move fast and hit hard. Winning the battlefield roll off can often determine the outcome of the game. Personally I prefer to run this deck with less upgrades and more events.

Alternative Slot-ins: Lloth Cat and Mouse, Fight Dirty, He Doesn’t Like you, Double Cross, and Drop In.

eTalzin/eDJ DD – Utah Regional Semi-Finalist – Brody from Boise

 This deck aims to control your dice at every opportunity while capitalizing on Talzin’s dice manipulation and DJ’s passive ability. The inclusion of 3 Streetwise and Witch Magick ensures that you can pay for your costly 3-cost events and keep your characters alive. Deja Vu + Witch Magick can be extremely frustrating to deal with. This deck really excels in a 2-character meta where shields are not in abundance. This deck can also be run effectively with a Holocron package.

Alternative Slot-ins: Holocron package and Wanton Destruction.

eDJ/eSnoke – Arizona Regional Semi-Finalist – Ezrian

This deck is largely doing the same thing as the Talzin version, but without having to shy away from the more effective even-cost events like Abandon All Hope, Beguile, HDLY, FILP, and Entangle. Due to the money-making potential this deck can also reliably get out a Vader’s Fist to do some work while controlling its opponents dice. You can also run this one with a Holocron Package.

Alternative Slot-ins: Deja Vu, Holocron Package, Reversal, and Wanton Destruction. 

eDooku/eTalzin – Semi-Finalist NH Regional – Separatist Charloe

With the rise of Vader, Dooku/Talzin would seem to be in a good spot. Unfortunately we are not seeing it rise above the masses yet. This deck theoretically should be able to handle Vader, but ironically the deck list posted above did not actually hit a Vader in his regional. So hard to say.

Decks to be Aware of, but not the most competitive

eHan3/ePoe2 – North Dakota Regional Semi-Finalist – CloudCityCasuals

This Deck uses the traditional red-yellow gun package while maximizing tempo for quick burst and jumps/retreat. Using Poe’s special into Han’s special allows this deck to push the resources it needs to play its more expensive events. It will suffer from not rolling enough damage to make its Jumps and Retreats effective.

eHan3/eYoda DD – North Carolina Regional Finalist – DjBigRuss

As the creator’s deck name suggests this deck is all about speed. Between 3 Force Speeds, Drop In, and 3 Hyperspace Jumps, this deck is meant to quickly maximize and get out before its opponent can react. It also lends to some big All-In plays and special chaining with Yoda. However, the ceiling with this deck is pretty low and it would struggle with big shields or 3-character lists.

eWullf/eKylo2 – Ohio Regional Champion – Articero

This deck was prepared in the pre-Snoke nerf meta and has not seen a lot of success since. The deck attempts to control your cards while maximizing Kylo2’s ability, but much like eHan/eYoda it suffers from a low ceiling. I do not believe this deck will be competitive in the current meta. May be worth testing just to understand its mechanics and tricks.

eThrawn/eSnoke BR

Last but not… er… maybe actually least is Thrawn/Snoke. This is the basic shell that our own AgentofZion won the Las Vegas Regional with, except 2x Grand Moff has been removed for another Handheld Cannon and the Seeker Droid. Thrawn/Snoke has virtually disappeared since the Snoke nerf and the -2 hp hit to Thrawn has made it really hard to keep him alive early. However, you still may want to be prepared for this deck, because it can do some really nasty things once it gets rolling.

Please let us know if you think we missed any decks. The meta is extremely broad right now with many different variations of all of the above decks. We hope this helps you prepare for your upcoming Regional(s).

-The Artificery Crew-

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