Thronebreaker : The Witcher Tales – Deck Building


You’ve probably come up with some of your own ideas for good decks in Thronebreaker. I simply made this deck to see how high a score I could get in one round. My first real attempt I got 35,000 points. Then I got 150,000 during one game and figured I’d try for 1 million, and I was able to get it. Here is a picture of a battle near the end of the game with 124 million points.

I do want to point out that this is not the most practical deck in the game — you can (more) easily beat most enemies with just a Bombers/Strays of Spalla deck. This deck is more for fun. You can usually just build up 500 points in a couple turns and beat most opponents without dragging the game out in order to get 1,000,000+ points. Also, this deck is really optimized for single-round battles, but I’ll cover that in depth further on in this guide.

Lastly I do need to emphasize that this deck does require a couple cards only available from Act 4 (Angren Map) onwards. You could probably build a watered down version of the deck earlier in the game, but you won’t get the explosive 1 million or more combos.

Deck List – Cards

1x Meve: Warhammer

1x Lyrian Banner

1x Reinforcements
1x Wolfsbane
1x Artefact Compression – Optional
1x Other – Optional [1]

Units (Gold / Heroes):
1x Black Rayla
1x Reynard Odo+
1x Arnjolf – Optional [1]
1x Gabor – Optional [1]
1x Xavier – Optional
*Throughout the game several hero units will leave your party due to decisions you make. The only hero you absolutely must have is Reynard+. Black Rayla is really useful but you can make this deck without her.

Units (Bronze)
5x Aretuza Adept
5x Alchemist+
5x Forager+
5x Regiment Drummer+
5x Lyrian Pathfinder
2x Mahakam Shieldbearer
3x Lyrian Blacksmith
5x Lyrian Scytheman – Optional
5x Field Medic – Optional
4x Strays Bomber+ – Optional [1]
5x Strays of Spalla – Optional [1]
2x Gheso Arbalest – Optional [1]

Optional: The deck does not require these cards.

Optional [1]: These cards are primarily used for 3-round games.

Building the Deck

For the full deck you’ll need to get to Angren, which is Act 4 of the game (the 4th map). From Act 4 onwards you have access to just about all the cards you’ll ever get, besides maybe a few heroes.

Story Decisions:
You absolutely must have Reynard+ to build this deck, and Black Rayla is a very powerful card as well, though not necessary. Also I would guess that one unit could be missed based on story decisions. For more details on this see the Notes – Story Decisions section of this guide.

Camp Building Requirements:

You want the Royal Tent levelled up to at least 3 trinkets, ideally 4 (for 3-round battles).

The Mess Tent should be maxed out (level 3) for including as many cards as possible.

You can get by with 200 Recruit Cap, but maxing out the Command Tent gives you breathing room when experimenting with the deck. The extra armor is also nice versus enemies that plink your guys.

You need Training Grounds (3) from the Training Grounds in order to upgrade the Regiment Drummer+. Having the Strays Bomber+ is also useful in any 3-round game.

The Workshop gives you access to the Alchemist and Aretuza Adept. It is worth noting that the upgraded Aretuza Adept+ is really not necessary for this deck.

Strategy / Playing the Deck

Note: This entire section focuses on 1-Round battles. For strategy on a ‘Standard Battle’ (a 3-Round battle) refer to Notes – 3-Round versus 1-Round Battles section of this guide.

The Draw Engine
The deck revolves around a very solid draw engine of Regiment Drummer+ combined with Reynard+. Those alone would allow you to draw your entire deck, but we have a couple backup options in Black Rayla, Wolfsbane, and Lyrian Pathfinders. Pathfinders are actually a better choice than Drummers when you have 5 or less cards in your hand. You want to refill your hand to take more turns to use more Order abilities (more on this later).
Meve: War Hammer combined Lyrian Banner trophy and Regiment Drummer+ allows you to pick any unit in your deck (Meve Commander Ability) and then play it using the Drummer’s Order ability. If you don’t have Reynard+ in your hand, your first unit choice should always be him. That will then reset your Drummer allowing you to Order another unit onto the field, and every subsequent time you use your Commander Ability because of Reynard+’s Loyal ability.

Black Rayla basically does everything a Drummer does except she lets you pick the unit directly.
Lyrian Pathfinders and Wolfsbane draw cards to your hand, but you can still use your Commander Ability beforehand to make sure you get cards you want.

The Forager: Cornerstone of the Deck

With the draw engine established, you can then use Foragers to clear the crowded battlefield. With Drummers and Pathfinders filling the battlefield, you will soon run out of space. Foragers consume other units. Combined with Reynard+, you can consume 2 units every 3 turns. Once you have some Drummers and/or Pathfinders on the battlefield, you can use your card-draw options to play Blacksmiths or Adepts to recycle Trinkets or add units to your deck. These units in turn are good food to get your Foragers started.
Eating your Trophy will double a Forager’s power, but your Trophy is a key element of your draw engine and should not be eaten until the end of the game.

Battlefield Layout: It’s probably easiest to have one row dedicated to Foragers and their food (Blacksmiths, Pathfinders, and other non-Order cards). The other row is then dedicated to the Order cards that fuel the draw engine, namely Rayla, Reynard, Drummers and Alchemists.
Keep in mind that each row can have a maximum of 9 units.

Alchemists and Shieldbearers: Spread the Power

Once you have a large Forager you can use Alchemists and Mahakam Shieldbearers to copy his power. Shieldbearers specifically are better used in the mid/late game because they have to be in the Forager row, but you don’t want to eat them. So playing a Shieldbearer next to a 10,000 strength Forager and then using an Alchemist to make the Shieldbearer also 10,000 allows you to copy that power to the other row, or another food unit.
Two Alchemists per Forager is a good number to have on the battlefield, because it allows you to eat two units with a Forager and then copy his increased power to the next two units beside him that will be eaten. This way a Forager can triple in size every time you reset Order abilities with Commander Ability/Reynard+.

Reinforcements – Get Units out Fast

You don’t need to play Reinforcements, the Drummers and Pathfinders alone should allow you to draw your entire deck. However it can be useful to get Drummers on the field in the early game, or to play a bunch of Pathfinders late in the game to refill your hand (see notes on Adepts). If I only have 1 or 2 Alchemists in play I have used Reinforcements to get them out so I can start spreading Forager power.
TL;DR – Use it on Drummers or Alchemists early game or Pathfinders mid/late game.

Aretuza Adept – Create Additional Units

In general the best choice as a target is Lyrian Pathfinder, because it cycles itself as a card draw and refills your hand. Forager is also a decent target because sometimes you’ll have Foragers eating Foragers, and then there’s a shortage. Those are really the only 2 targets; you shouldn’t need more Drummers or Alchemists.
Keep in mind that you need to target a unit either in hand or on the battlefield. I often play Adepts and then realize that the unit I wanted to target is not available.
Side Note: You can target Adepts with Black Rayla and War Hammer, Immune does not affect cards not in play.

Extending the Game:

Because this deck does better in general the longer you have to play, you want to extend your game as long as possible with additional cards in-hand. To do this, Wolfsbane, Artefact Compression, and optionally Decoy put cards in your hand for more turns. You should also use Adepts on Pathfinders to draw more. Keep in mind that drawing is better than playing a card straight from the deck in late-game, so Pathfinders > Drummers later on.

Maximizing Points: When to play which Units

In a single round battle you can use your entire deck and get massive Forager(s). The game doesn’t show unit power above [9999], but it does keep track of the number even if it doesn’t show it. That means it’s up to you to remember who your biggest units are in order to use Alchemists/Shieldbearers to copy their power.
You want to first establish a moderate draw engine, 1-2 Drummers or Pathfinders at the very least. Then use your Commander Ability to get Black Rayla and Reynard+ into play. Then you should focus on playing all 5 Adepts because they are Immune and cannot be boosted by your Alchemists. By now your battlefield will be pretty full so you’ll want to get 2 Foragers into one row to start eating unnecessary units like expired Pathfinders and Adepts. Use Blacksmiths as necessary to reuse either Reinforcements or Trinkets that refill your hand (Wolfsbane, Artefact Compression). The Foragers will be big enough to start multiplying their power with Alchemists. Try to get 2 Foragers in one row and 4 Alchemists in the other. Then use Drummers or just play units from hand to the Forager row. Use the 4 Alchemists to copy the Forager power to the newly played units, and then eat them to triple the Forager power. Repeat this as many times as possible, while continuing to draw cards and play units via Pathfinders.

A good starting hand (for a 1-Round game) should have Wolfsbane, Artefact Compression and Reinforcements Trinkets. Then you want at least 1 Drummer or Pathfinder to start refilling your hand. Adepts work well as early units. You may want 1-2 Strays Bombers to whittle down annoying enemy units. If you can get Reynard or Rayla in your opening hand it’s great, but if not you can always use your Commander Ability to draw them ASAP. Having Blacksmiths in your opening hand is also useful because using and reusing Trinkets tends to get your game started faster.
Cards to avoid and redraw in your opening hand are Shieldbearers, Alchemists. You won’t need these Order abilities until you already have a large Forager.

Notes – 3-Round versus 1-Round Battles

In a 3-Round game, or ‘Standard Battle’ as the game calls it, you have to change your strategy a bit. The cards listed as Optional [1] in the Card List are cards you can use to get an opponent to quickly forfeit the first round. Strays Bombers followed by Strays of Spalla will destroy an entire row of enemy troops. Gabor – Left Hook does good damage and can kill 1-2 enemy units, and Arnjolf can pick away at enemy units. Your 4th Trinket should be reserved for beating first rounds. Dimeritium Shackles is a good choice, instantly giving you 3 units. Damage Trinkets like Northern Wind or Zoria Runestone are also good picks.

Basically you want to get through Round 1 without playing any of your combo cards — Drummers, Pathfinders, Rayla, Reynard, Alchemists or Foragers. A notable exception are Adepts; these are almost better to play in Round 1 as long as you have a target in hand, because then your deck gets built up for the following round.

Notes – Story Decisions (Mild Spoilers)

I’ve only beaten this game once so far, but (I think) a couple cards in the deck could be unavailable based on decisions you make in the story.

Late in the game you get an opportunity to send Reynard away from your army. Don’t do this.
I think right after this choice he changes from Reynard to Reynard+.

Black Rayla
Black Rayla hates Scoia’tael (Elves and Dwarves), and there are several decisions throughout the game concerning them. You have to side with Rayla pretty much every time or else she’ll leave the party. She’s okay with Dwarves in Mahakam (as she tells you at one point), but there is one town where you get ambushed by Scoia’tael. I would advise avoiding this town entirely. When you find the town and the story prompts you to make a decision simply alt+f4 the game, restart and avoid that town.

Mahakam Shieldbearer
This card isn’t absolutely necessary in the deck, but it is a convenient way to move card power around. I’m guessing that if you anger the Dwarven leader too much in Act 3 then he won’t give you Dwarf troops and you could miss out on this card. So whenever prompted, be truthful and side with Brouver Hoog the Dwarf leader.

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