"Heavy Runners": aka, a new name 4 another usual Portal-based Majiya Deck's brew.

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Quote Originally Posted by SMEERO View Post
Hello Everybody!
I'm glad to post my first deck, with a strategy guide, to share some knowledge i made on QMs after months of battles and revisions.


The version that You are going to see, and i hope We are going to discuss is by now tuned and working quite well in QMs.
As the title suggests, it's a Portal Majiya, a quite tested and played archetype that is not supposed to astonish either shock anybody.
I haven't found the perfect brew to succeed in The Gauntlet, or even the freshest recipe that will raise your rating to 300 or more in QMs. I really do not believe such a thing could ever exist, because strong decks usually require skilled player in order to get good results. Moreover, years of experience in different TCGs taught me that habitually the more a deck is a strong one, the less is known to be a user-friendly one. That means that if a deck doesn't require difficult decisions in most cases, realistically ( apart from a great lucky streak of games... ) is not going to give you the chance to climb the ladder of QMs, or the 1st place of that really fancy tournament that you'd like to undertake.

"Heavy Runners"



Soft allies:

3 Infernal Gargoyle

3 Death Mage Thaddeus

3 Belladonna

3 Wulven Tracker

Hard allies:

3 Brutal Minotaur

2 Molten Destroyer

3 Shadow Knight


4 Fireball

4 Lightning Strike

3 Supernova


3 Tome of Knowledge

2 Shriek of Vengeance

2 Ley Line Nexus


4 Portal


43 cards including the Hero.

Strategy and Hints

"Ok, the deck is built, the cards are dealt. what am i going to do now?"

But the actual question should be, what our plans are? And the answer to this question is half face up in front of you, that means what Hero is your Oppo playing, and the other half is lurking in the number of cards he is running in his deck. It could be objected that the number of cards is still not enough because our plans should be the very accurate, and as who is telling us this, is unfortunately telling the truth, we should imagine which kind of archetype ( i.e. which kind of strategy ) we are going to deal with.
Well, this article is not designed to provide all this kind of info. But if i see that my Oppo is playing Eladwen in a Quick Match, my rating is 250, and his or her deck has got 40 cards, i must be sure that he or she built the deck with 4 Fireball, 4 Lightning Strike, at least 2 Supernova, with the current meta probably 3 Priest of the Light at least, and Jasmine. "How many Jasmine?" I don't know. "Does he or she runs Puwen or Blake? And Aeon, what about Aeon?" Again. I don't know. Probably our oppo is running a weenie rush, but Eladwen is a pesky hero, and i really do not know any trick that serves well the purpose to spot if our Oppo's deck is a very slow control, or a death race weenie rush, at turn ONE!!! Obviously if our Oppo is running Darkclaw, a 45 card darkclaw, i am not expecting a weenie rush.
But it's not the same thing if our Oppo's hero is Nishaven. It could definitely be a weenie rush. This matter is too controversial to be discussed here, so i will restrict the general strategy to:

  • Deck with a standard number of cards ( i.e. Between 40 and 50. no more ).
  • General archetypes, even if not necessarily heavily played in QMs.

Our typical actions, running this deck, won't be dramatically different according to what deck is our opponent running. Our sacrifice choices, otherwise will be. And the same is true for timing the actions. This deck is a focused one. It simply cannot win in three different ways. Our oppo is not going to surrender at turn 4, whichever his or her hero is, and we are not going to win if our deck is running out of cards ( 5 left ) and our Oppo has got still his life total unspotted ( and usually a Lone Wolf attached ). We win by serving damage. Huge amount of damage when is possible, especially concentrating it in the mid-game. Our general purpose with this deck should be striving for a decent survival in the early game ( until we reach the threshold of 6-7 resources ) and then consistently rising in resource power and consequently in the board presence. This is, by the rule of the thumb, the strategy that should be adopted playing against a typical weenie rush, like a fast Amber, Boris, or Eladwen, or ( with caution...) Elementalis, if we are looking for an issue among the Shadows.

"Yeah, but basically what should i do?"
First and the foremost, take care of the sacrifice choice in a proper way. If you are facing Boris, that is by the way not your best matchup but not even the worst, you are going first and your starting hand consists of : 2 gargoyle, 2 minotaurs, 1 ley line nexus and 1 portal, do NOT sac the LLN because you think that everything will be over within turn 7, or why not, he or she probably is not running The King's Pride, and if he or she is running Berserker's Edge, he or she probably has Reserve Weapon or Lily, i.e. Ley Line Nexus won't be useful. Portal is, 4 instance, a card that should never be sacrificed, except for weird occurrence, like an opening hand with 4 or 3 of them. Remember that if you manage to play properly two Portal in the same game, you are going to win those game roughly 85 % of the time. Maybe sthg more. The best way to be sure that you can play this full portal potential is saving your portal from a poor sacrifice. At least in the early game. "So, what am i going to sac?" Definitely the second Gargoyle. If you are thinking something like:
"Yeah, but the first one is going to die beneath Boris Ability at turn 4. Why not replace it with the second one?"
There are two main reasons to realise that you are wrong. The former is that you are going to draw at least one Belladonna out of 3 that is your total stock, one DMT out of three that is your total stock, maybe one Wulven Tracker out of 3 that, again, is your total stock, and you would be very happy to cast anyone of them when Boris is short as far as shadow energy is concerned, so that second gargoyle is not going to be that necessary to keep the pressure high on turn 4. The latter reason, is that you should notice that you have a Portal in your hand, and 2 Brutal Minotaur. Ok, Maybe one is going to be sacced on turn 2, it depends on what is going to be our next draw, but if we are going first, we have no burn abilities to deal with the oppo's allies in our opening hand, and we have a Portal with two fatties, hard hitters, or, as i prefer call'em, heavy runners, we definitely do not need a second gargoyle on turn 4. We want the portal instead.
This is an easy instance, but you are going to face plenty of them, and you should be prepared not making any mistakes at least on the easy one.
Another mistake that must be avoided is thinking that if you have Supernova in your hand and you are facing a weenie rush, you do not have to use your precious fireball or lightning strike to kill allies on turn 3 or 4, because of your ability and, of course, they are all going to die on turn 5. And your life total after the Nova will be probably close to 9, that means close to see the word DEFEAT in orange on your monitor, in a deck that has no chance to heal wound or gain life.
I usually sac Supernova if i have two of them in my opening hand, or if i have at least two other burn and one of those is a lightning strike.
"What else should be sacced easily?" If you are playing against elementals heroes, it is known that you are going to face Mind Control, and when the time will come for your opponent to cast it, you are supposed to have nothing really fat on your side, especially that huge Brutal Minotaur, that is going to hit you for a total of 8 dmg ( ouch! ) that is nearly 30% of your total health. So, sacrifice all the Brutal Minotaur that you can against elementals, and the same is true for the Shadow Knight ( maybe not ALL of them, EVEN IF you really see 3 of them in your opening hand ) and for the first Molten Destroyer. Belladonna should be the favourite choice to be sacced instead of the Wulven Tracker, that against the elementals heroes become amazing allies, if played with the correct timing. Rely more on stuff like the Gargoyle, and the DMT, that combined with a Portal, and Majiya Shadow Ability can deliver a remarkable amount of damage in 3 resources.
By the way, talking about resources, you should not want to stop saccing till you achieve 9-10, or even 11 resources, even if this means performing a really hard saccing choice with a short hand. If this deck has a secret for win a game, for what i found out, the secret is this. If you raise your resource power, you'll be able to perform awesome actions like a turn 7 Portal with DMT killing an ally with Majiya's ability, turn 8 Shadow Knight recycling DMT and re-casting it, for other 8 dmg, and a turn 9 Belladonna + Minotaur, that means a sure theoretical delivery of 21 dmg, excluding the 3 dmg of Maj's ability. This is possible only if you keep going on sacrifice cards.
Of course part of the saccing task is going to be easier if the Luck gave us the present of a turn 2 Tome of Knowledge, especially against some heroes like human warriors or human mages, or human hunters. But even against wulven or elementals.
I will dedicate some real, analitycal room 4 the matchup, as soon as i'll get the time to enlarge this thread. Now i am tired.
Until that, "step through and enjoy the"... read.

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