Swim’s Dagon Deathswarm Monsters – Open Beta

Deck

-- 5,750
23
Melee
0
Ranged
10
Siege
55
Multiple
88
Total

Hey guys Swim here, with my deathswarm deck that I created and climbed with on stream yesterday.  The deck plays similarly to the dagon fog lists we see, although it uses mass unit swarm via harpy and earth elemental, in conjunction with mass buff cards such as Iris, Yennefer, and Commander’s Horn to achieve great value.  The idea is to hopefully take round 1, then carryover many units into round 2.  If Iris dies from the round ending, she’ll buff ALL of your spawned units going into the next round.

Otherwise, you can instant-play Yennefer with 4+ units on the board already to achieve great value going into a fresh round, in addition to spamming out more buff units first, hopefully resulting in:

Crafting Order

Water Hag -> IrisDeathwish: Boost 5 random Units on the other side of the Board by 5. -> Fire Elemental -> Bekker's Twisted MirrorDamage the Highest Unit by an amount equal to its Power, but no more than 10 (ignoring Armor) and Boost the Lowest other Unit by the same amount. -> FiendDeploy: If you have any Relicts in your Hand, Strengthen self by 3. -> YenneferDeploy: Spawn a Unicorn or a Chironex. -> Woodland SpiritDeploy: Spawn 3 Rabid Wolves and apply a Fog Hazard to the opposite row. -> Ge'elsDeploy: Look at the top Gold card and top Silver card from your Deck. Play 1 and return the other to the top of your Deck. -> CaranthirDeploy: Move an Enemy to this row on its side and apply a Frost Hazard to that row.

If you have any of the following cards, you can replace any cards you don’t own with:

Gold replacements

CiriAt the end of the Round, return this Unit to your Hand if you lost. Deploy: Gain 3 Armor.Avallac'hDeploy: If neither player has passed, both players draw the top 2 cards from their Decks.Triss: Butterfly SpellEvery turn, at the start of your turn, Boost all other Lowest Allies by 1. Revenge: Boost all other Lowest Allies by 2.VillentretenmerthAfter 3 turns, at the start of your turn, Destroy all the other Highest Units on the Board. Deploy: Gain 3 Armor.Geralt: IgniDeploy: Destroy all the Highest Units on the opposite row if that row totals 25 or more Power.,  KayranDeploy: Consume a Unit with 6 or less Power. If there is no eligible Unit, Boost self by 8., SuccubusAfter 2 turns, at the start of your turn, move the Highest Unit on the opposite row to your side., CaretakerDeploy: Resurrect a Bronze or Silver Unit from your opponent's Graveyard.

Silver replacements

RoachWhenever you play a Gold card from your Hand (note: does not include Leaders), play this Unit from your Deck on a random row before that card resolves.ScorchDestroy all the Highest Units.DecoyReturn a Bronze or Silver Ally to your Hand, Boost it by 3 and play it., Giant Toad, Prize Winning Cow, FrightenerDoomed. Deploy: Move a Unit on another row on this side to this row. Draw the top card from your Deck., Marching OrdersBoost the Lowest Bronze or Silver Unit from your Deck by 2 and play it., ShadowDeploy: Play a Bronze Monster Deathwish Unit from your Deck. Shuffle the others back., Crone: BrewessDeploy: Play all other Crones from your Deck./Crone: WeavessDeploy: Play all other Crones from your Deck./Crone: WhispessDeploy: Play all other Crones from your Deck.

This deck’s BUDGET VERSION is not the cheapest out of my deck’s budget versions, but it’s very effective. You’ll need Woodland Spirit and Yennefer, as well as several epics.  Plays basically the same as the normal list though, just be as always cognizant of not having Royal Decree being too redundant.  Try to use Decoy on Water Hag, Archgriffin, or Unicorn.


Check out my VIDEO GUIDE if you’re interested in watching me play this deck with commentary, or free to check out my stream to see me create more decks like this, or to ask me any questions.  🙂

Card Combos

Bronzes

Celaeno HarpyDeploy: Spawn 2 Harpy Eggs to the left.: Basically auto-include monsters card. Offers huge value, even without any synergies.  Play for 7 value, with 6 more after the eggs die.  Best thing for this deck is that it plays 5 bodies total, which is huge.  Enables Horn/Yennefer/Iris both on the round you play it, and the round afterwards.  Use eggs to block cow carcasses or to enable Bekker’s Twisted Mirror.  Try to play these in spread out rows if possible, although in certain situations you can stack these if you aren’t afraid of being punished and need to setup a big horn.  Play these as your proactive options early on in rounds. Deploy: Spawn 2 Harpy Eggs to the left.

Earth ElementalDeploy: Give this Unit a Shield. Deathwish: Spawn 2 Lesser Earth Elementals at the end of the row.: Similar to harpy, although offers less payout. Still very solid with the swarm idea. Plays for great value in future rounds, and the quen shield is more important than ever with so much weather; it will pretty reliably generate you value here. Make sure to keep these on the right side of the melee row, as if your eggs die and spawn harpies on the melee row, they’ll be able to spawn lesser earth elementals for extra value. It might be your natural inclination to put golds to the right of these to block skellige storm, but avoid that unless against a spell-based deck.  Be wary however of saving these cards for round 3 however, as unlike the celaeno harpies they’re very reliant on their deathrattle to provide value.

FogletWhenever you apply a Fog Hazard, play 1 copy of this Unit from your Deck on the opposite row. If there are none, Resurrect 1 copy instead. Destroy when all Fog Hazards are cleared from the Board.: Blacklist these early and pull them out with fogs.  Be wary that these go onto the opposite row that you fog, and avoid playing them into a weather that will kill them.  Currently, these actually don’t die when fog is removed from the opposite row if there’s fog in the row that they’re on, which is actually very abuseable in the fog mirror, as you can summon these in a row where they’re protected by larger units, and the opponent can’t clear to kill them.

Impenetrable FogApply a Fog Hazard to an opposing row. Fog Hazard: Every turn, at the start of your turn, Damage the Highest Unit on the row by 2.: Put pressure on the opponent early and summon your foglets.  I’ll play this generally as soon as the opponent plays a unit.  As with any weather, be very careful about committing too many weathers.  In most cases I’ll try to put no more than 2 weathers on the board at once, although you also need to know when to push with more, generally after several turns of the first weather, or in round 3.  Most players will clear all weather when you commit a second weather, so as long as you don’t, they’re kind of locked out of clearing the first one, and must just endure it.  Use this to your advantage.

ArchgriffinDeploy: Clear Hazards from the row on your side. Move a Bronze card from one Graveyard to the other.: Clear a single row of weather.  You can use this one pretty early, unless it’s a weather you don’t care to clear.  Pretty straightforward application.  You can mulligan them away in matchups if you don’t expect weather, such as Nilfgaard or Skellige.

LacerateDamage all Units on a row by 3.: Huge value off the combo with Caranthir, and another enabler to kill iris.  Often you’ll Caranthir and they’ll clear the weather, but you always have this as followup.

Bloodcurdling RoarDestroy an Ally. Spawn a Bear.: Two major uses, for triggering eggs, and for destroying cow carcasses.  Rot tosser is one of the strongest cards in terms of its general trade value, and this card is able to beat it by 6 points in the trade which is gigantic.  Fantastic anti-nilfgaard tech.

Silvers

Water Hag: Auto-include monsters card.  Gigantic utility, and huge value.  Lacerate here combos with caranthir and can trigger Iris, and you can rain to apply pressure in a situation where you want more weather if the round is looking a bit longer.  Basically just save it for late (in case you need to use it as a clear), and otherwise use it for lacerate later.  Rain would be an early round 2-3 play most of the time, in a situation where you want pressure at the start of a medium-sized round.  

Hey guys Swim here, with my deathswarm deck that I created and climbed with on stream yesterday.  The deck plays similarly to the dagon fog lists we see, although it uses mass unit swarm via harpy and earth elemental, in conjunction with mass buff cards such as Iris, Yennefer, and Commander's Horn to achieve great value.  The idea is to hopefully take round 1, then carryover many units into round 2.  If Iris dies from the round ending, she'll buff ALL of your spawned units going into the next round. Otherwise, you can instant-play Yennefer with 4+ units on the board already to achieve great value going into a fresh round, in addition to spamming out more buff units first, hopefully resulting in:

Crafting Order

[card_link name="Water Hag"] -> [card_link name="Iris"] -> [card_link name="Fire Elemental"] -> [card_link name="Bekker's Twisted Mirror"] -> [card_link name="Fiend"] -> [card_link name="Yennefer"] -> [card_link name="Woodland Spirit"] -> [card_link name="Ge'els"] -> [card_link name="Caranthir"] If you have any of the following cards, you can replace any cards you don't own with:

Gold replacements

[card_link name="Ciri"], [card_link name="Avallac'h"], [card_link name="Triss: Butterfly Spell"], [card_link name="Villentretenmerth"], [card_link name="Geralt: Igni"],  [card_link name="Kayran"], [card_link name="Succubus"], [card_link name="Caretaker"]

Silver replacements

[card_link name="Roach"], [card_link name="Scorch"], [card_link name="Decoy"], [card_link name="Giant Toad"], [card_link name="Prize Winning Cow"], [card_link name="Frightener"], [card_link name="Marching Orders"], [card_link name="Shadow"], [card_link name="Crone: Brewess"]/[card_link name="Crone: Weavess"]/[card_link name="Crone: Whispess"] This deck's BUDGET VERSION is not the cheapest out of my deck's budget versions, but it's very effective. You'll need Woodland Spirit and Yennefer, as well as several epics.  Plays basically the same as the normal list though, just be as always cognizant of not having Royal Decree being too redundant.  Try to use Decoy on Water Hag, Archgriffin, or Unicorn. Check out my VIDEO GUIDE if you're interested in watching me play this deck with commentary, or free to check out my stream to see me create more decks like this, or to ask me any questions.  🙂 [youtube video="vQvQ2sdik04"]

Card Combos

Bronzes

[card_link name="Celaeno Harpy"]: Basically auto-include monsters card. Offers huge value, even without any synergies.  Play for 7 value, with 6 more after the eggs die.  Best thing for this deck is that it plays 5 bodies total, which is huge.  Enables Horn/Yennefer/Iris both on the round you play it, and the round afterwards.  Use eggs to block cow carcasses or to enable Bekker's Twisted Mirror.  Try to play these in spread out rows if possible, although in certain situations you can stack these if you aren't afraid of being punished and need to setup a big horn.  Play these as your proactive options early on in rounds. [card name="Celaeno Harpy"] [card_link name="Earth Elemental"]: Similar to harpy, although offers less payout. Still very solid with the swarm idea. Plays for great value in future rounds, and the quen shield is more important than ever with so much weather; it will pretty reliably generate you value here. Make sure to keep these on the right side of the melee row, as if your eggs die and spawn harpies on the melee row, they'll be able to spawn lesser earth elementals for extra value. It might be your natural inclination to put golds to the right of these to block skellige storm, but avoid that unless against a spell-based deck.  Be wary however of saving these cards for round 3 however, as unlike the celaeno harpies they're very reliant on their deathrattle to provide value. [card_link name="Foglet"]: Blacklist these early and pull them out with fogs.  Be wary that these go onto the opposite row that you fog, and avoid playing them into a weather that will kill them.  Currently, these actually don't die when fog is removed from the opposite row if there's fog in the row that they're on, which is actually very abuseable in the fog mirror, as you can summon these in a row where they're protected by larger units, and the opponent can't clear to kill them. [card_link name="Impenetrable Fog"]: Put pressure on the opponent early and summon your foglets.  I'll play this generally as soon as the opponent plays a unit.  As with any weather, be very careful about committing too many weathers.  In most cases I'll try to put no more than 2 weathers on the board at once, although you also need to know when to push with more, generally after several turns of the first weather, or in round 3.  Most players will clear all weather when you commit a second weather, so as long as you don't, they're kind of locked out of clearing the first one, and must just endure it.  Use this to your advantage. [card_link name="Archgriffin"]: Clear a single row of weather.  You can use this one pretty early, unless it's a weather you don't care to clear.  Pretty straightforward application.  You can mulligan them away in matchups if you don't expect weather, such as Nilfgaard or Skellige. [card_link name="Lacerate"]: Huge value off the combo with Caranthir, and another enabler to kill iris.  Often you'll Caranthir and they'll clear the weather, but you always have this as followup. [card_link name="Bloodcurdling Roar"]: Two major uses, for triggering eggs, and for destroying cow carcasses.  Rot tosser is one of the strongest cards in terms of its general trade value, and this card is able to beat it by 6 points in the trade which is gigantic.  Fantastic anti-nilfgaard tech.

Silvers

[card_link name="Water Hag"]: Auto-include monsters card.  Gigantic utility, and huge value.  Lacerate here combos with caranthir and can trigger Iris, and you can rain to apply pressure in a situation where you want more weather if the round is looking a bit longer.  Basically just save it for late (in case you need to use it as a clear), and otherwise use it for lacerate later.  Rain would be an early round 2-3 play most of the time, in a situation where you want pressure at the start of a medium-sized round.  [card name="Water Hag"] [card_link name="Iris"]: As mentioned previously, with this deck you don't even have to kill this card to gain value from her.  You can play her midway or late into a round where you have both a developed board for this round and for the next round, and then if you need to end up using her to push for the round you're in, you can kill her to take the round, or if not, you can win the round without her and then start next round with 25-50 points.  Against Skellige, place her to the right of longships so they start killing her, and against monsters place her on the right side of a row; if you kill an egg and it hatches a harpy next to her, she'll trigger her deathrattle without dying.  In a pinch you can trigger her with weather or unlock her with Fiend.  Note that sometimes you will intentionally play her outside of weather, because you might want to ensure being able to get her deathrattle at the start of the next round rather than in the current one. [card_link name="Fire Elemental"]: More bodies for your buffs.  Note that the brave trigger on this will check scores after it's played for 12 points, so you need to be 13 or more behind to get the +2 strength.  Try to play around that if possible.  Great card to keep going into round 3 alongside a yennefer. [card_link name="Commander's Horn"]: Pretty easy value in this deck.  Even in round 3, you'll often have a woodland spirit which will already provide you with enough bodies to be able to buff with this, particularly with a small amount of carryover from round 2.  Very reliable. Avoid if possible buffing foglets, as they're susceptible to dying if fog is cleared. [card_link name="Fiend"]: Your lock/unlock utility.  Mostly useful to unlock iris, or to lock threats such as morkvarg, or a resilient Impera Brigade.  Pretty standard functions here. [card_link name="Bekker's Twisted Mirror"]: Pretty powerful card despite its meme reputation.  In any deck that has a lot of 1-strength units, and no units over 6-7, this card can find pretty great value. Always be on the lookout for an avenue to get value out of this card; will require some delicate playing around. At the same time, don't try to get too greedy here and try to get value in early rounds if given the option for a 16+ swing.

Golds

[card_link name="Yennefer"]: Core to the idea of this deck, one of the two cards that buffs every unit on your board.  Try to secure a good carryover on a won round, then play this card in the early turns of next round to force huge value (often playing a few more swarmy cards first).  Be wary of savage bear denying your unicorn.  Additionally, you can use this for round 1, especially if you have an Iris on their board, and you use yennefer to win round 1 with Iris on board, and Iris carries you over huge value into round 2.  The objective of this card is essentially to simply play units faster than the opponent, so start a late round with a good carryover, then play several units in a few turns (fire ele, woodland spirit, celaeno harpy), then slam this for huge value. [card name="Yennefer"] [card_link name="Woodland Spirit"]: Pretty great synergy card, as it not only enables foglets but even if the fog is cleared, enables good buff targets via wolves.  Save this one for round 3 whenever possible, hopefully with Yennefer. [card_link name="Ge'els"]: Great value monster card that gives you better access to your high-value golds and silvers, which in many ways are essential to this deck.  Use it when you're fishing for something and your gamble will often be rewarded; as a worst case scenario, you generally have one good option from the choices, as well as probably increasing your draws for next round. [card_link name="Caranthir"]: Can actually be a bit unreliable, but when it generates value it can win the game on its own.  It's best near the end of a decently long round, to put all of their units on the same row.  If the opponent clears that row, you can follow up with a lacerate, or maybe a second frost from Dagon.  When deciding a row, generally you pick whichever row you expect the opponent to further develop into; often siege against monsters and skellige, and melee/siege against nilfgaard.

Unincluded Cards

This section is simply for explaining why some cards that may seem good fits for this list aren't in it.  Most of these cards are still good budget replacements, and be sure to consult that section at the top of this guide if you're unsure about replacement slots. [card_link name="Triss: Butterfly Spell"]: Seems super appealing in this list, and she offers great value sometimes, despite being slow and situational.  Her biggest problem is Nilfgaard, which can block a lot of her value with strategically timed cow carcasses and emissaries.  Still a great budget replacement. [card_link name="Crone: Brewess"]/[card_link name="Crone: Weavess"]/[card_link name="Crone: Whispess"]: These cards are...honestly pretty overrated.  They are clunky, take up a lot of silver slots, and weaken Ge'els.  Definitely not a bad choice for this list, and great budget replacements, but I find it runs a bit better without them. [card_link name="Roach"]: I think this card's amazing and would love to run him in this list but he's a bit awkward with Ge'els. [card_link name="Marching Orders"]: It's a consideration, as it pulls out Iris and Water Hag.  Pulling them out randomly is a bit awkward, and pulling Iris out at 5 strength can be awkward, even if you don't have to kill her.  Still a great budget replacement. [card_link name="Shadow"]/[card_link name="Harpy"]: Somewhat inconsistent, and their value ceiling isn't high enough to make up for their low floor, which is drawing them dead.

Mulligan

Open by
blacklisting foglets.  You can elect to get rid of archgriffin and first light against skellige and nilfgaard if you don't expect weather.  You can drop lacerate if you don't have Iris, although it can still achieve great value against nilfgaard early on.  Drop Bloodcurdling Roar if not against nilfgaard as it's mostly a tech for that matchup.  Drop Bekker's Twisted Mirror against monsters, as they will have too many 1-str units for it to be reliable.  Lastly you can drop an Earth Elemental if the rest of your hand is good, you're fishing for something, and you have at least 5 total combination of harpies and earth elementals.  If you haven't seen foglets all mulligan, make sure you decline your third mulligan in practically all cases.

Round 1 

Generally open by playing Earth Elemental, as it's your most non-committal play.  Keep this Earth Elemental on the right side of your melee row, as spawned harpies landing on that row will then trigger its deathrattle. Play a fog from hand when the opponent commits a unit, unless your foglets would land in weather.  If you have no bronze fog, use Dagon.  In general, try to keep one weather on the board, but avoid playing multiple weathers at the same time, as the opponent will generally wait for you to play a second weather before using their clear skies, and you're much better off keeping that pressure with that one weather, as they are basically locked out of the option of using clear skies until you commit more (although in some scenarios, often round 3, you'll need to know when to push for additional weathers). Continue into the round playing celaeno harpies and earth elementals, possibly using a Fire Elemental if you're ever 13 or more points behind.  Bloodcurdling Roar any cow carcasses, and Archgriffin any weathers.  Use Bekker's Twisted Mirror if you ever have a situation that presents a good value (16+ swing), although saving it for round 3 can be situationally strong as well.  When the round goes sufficiently deep, use Iris or Caranthir (using Ge'els to try to find one of these can be good too).  Against Skellige, place Iris to the right of a longship to threaten it dying, and against Monsters play Iris on the right end of a stacked row; if you kill an egg and it hatches a harpy next to her, she'll trigger her deathrattle without dying. Iris will often threaten them out of the round, at which point if you can beat their score without popping Iris, she'll die going into the next round, and buff all of your hatched harpies and lesser elementals for the start of next round.  If they don't pass, you can force out the current round by triggering the Iris with lacerate, Water Hag, or weathers. Be aware that in many situations you may intentionally play Iris outside of weathers to ensure that she won't be triggered until next round.  With Caranthir, play him in the row you expect the opponent to occupy with late units: against monsters and skellige, generally the siege row, and against nilfgaard, melee or siege.  If they clear Caranthir's frost, you can dagon to re-frost or lacerate that row for massive value.  If you're able to win round 1 with 6+ units being carried over into next round AND Iris going off, you have probably won the game already.

Rounds 2-3

Hopefully you were able to win round 1.  If you win round 1 with either Iris buff being carried over, or a Yennefer in hand, you're generally in a very good position.  More often than not you'll have at very least 4 units to start the board with.  If you have Yennefer, start swarming units very quickly onto the board (fire elemental, woodland spirit, celaeno harpy), then slam Yennefer with generally ~10+ more units than the opponent for huge value.  If you lose round 1 but have a solid carryover going into round 3, the same rules apply: try to save Yennefer for the start of round 3 and surge ahead in units before playing her.  Ultimately the later rounds of this deck are very straightforward.  If you're able to assert enough pressure in early rounds, the game should be effectively secured.  Good luck.  🙂

IrisDeathwish: Boost 5 random Units on the other side of the Board by 5.: As mentioned previously, with this deck you don’t even have to kill this card to gain value from her.  You can play her midway or late into a round where you have both a developed board for this round and for the next round, and then if you need to end up using her to push for the round you’re in, you can kill her to take the round, or if not, you can win the round without her and then start next round with 25-50 points.  Against Skellige, place her to the right of longships so they start killing her, and against monsters place her on the right side of a row; if you kill an egg and it hatches a harpy next to her, she’ll trigger her deathrattle without dying.  In a pinch you can trigger her with weather or unlock her with Fiend.  Note that sometimes you will intentionally play her outside of weather, because you might want to ensure being able to get her deathrattle at the start of the next round rather than in the current one.

Fire Elemental: More bodies for your buffs.  Note that the brave trigger on this will check scores after it’s played for 12 points, so you need to be 13 or more behind to get the +2 strength.  Try to play around that if possible.  Great card to keep going into round 3 alongside a yennefer.

Commander's HornBoost 5 adjacent Units by 4.: Pretty easy value in this deck.  Even in round 3, you’ll often have a woodland spirit which will already provide you with enough bodies to be able to buff with this, particularly with a small amount of carryover from round 2.  Very reliable. Avoid if possible buffing foglets, as they’re susceptible to dying if fog is cleared.

FiendDeploy: If you have any Relicts in your Hand, Strengthen self by 3.: Your lock/unlock utility.  Mostly useful to unlock iris, or to lock threats such as morkvarg, or a resilient Impera Brigade.  Pretty standard functions here.

Bekker's Twisted MirrorDamage the Highest Unit by an amount equal to its Power, but no more than 10 (ignoring Armor) and Boost the Lowest other Unit by the same amount.: Pretty powerful card despite its meme reputation.  In any deck that has a lot of 1-strength units, and no units over 6-7, this card can find pretty great value. Always be on the lookout for an avenue to get value out of this card; will require some delicate playing around. At the same time, don’t try to get too greedy here and try to get value in early rounds if given the option for a 16+ swing.

Golds

YenneferDeploy: Spawn a Unicorn or a Chironex.: Core to the idea of this deck, one of the two cards that buffs every unit on your board.  Try to secure a good carryover on a won round, then play this card in the early turns of next round to force huge value (often playing a few more swarmy cards first).  Be wary of savage bear denying your unicorn.  Additionally, you can use this for round 1, especially if you have an Iris on their board, and you use yennefer to win round 1 with Iris on board, and Iris carries you over huge value into round 2.  The objective of this card is essentially to simply play units faster than the opponent, so start a late round with a good carryover, then play several units in a few turns (fire ele, woodland spirit, celaeno harpy), then slam this for huge value. Deploy: Spawn a Unicorn or a Chironex.

Woodland SpiritDeploy: Spawn 3 Rabid Wolves and apply a Fog Hazard to the opposite row.: Pretty great synergy card, as it not only enables foglets but even if the fog is cleared, enables good buff targets via wolves.  Save this one for round 3 whenever possible, hopefully with Yennefer.

Ge'elsDeploy: Look at the top Gold card and top Silver card from your Deck. Play 1 and return the other to the top of your Deck.: Great value monster card that gives you better access to your high-value golds and silvers, which in many ways are essential to this deck.  Use it when you’re fishing for something and your gamble will often be rewarded; as a worst case scenario, you generally have one good option from the choices, as well as probably increasing your draws for next round.

CaranthirDeploy: Move an Enemy to this row on its side and apply a Frost Hazard to that row.: Can actually be a bit unreliable, but when it generates value it can win the game on its own.  It’s best near the end of a decently long round, to put all of their units on the same row.  If the opponent clears that row, you can follow up with a lacerate, or maybe a second frost from Dagon.  When deciding a row, generally you pick whichever row you expect the opponent to further develop into; often siege against monsters and skellige, and melee/siege against nilfgaard.

Unincluded Cards

This section is simply for explaining why some cards that may seem good fits for this list aren’t in it.  Most of these cards are still good budget replacements, and be sure to consult that section at the top of this guide if you’re unsure about replacement slots.

Triss: Butterfly SpellEvery turn, at the start of your turn, Boost all other Lowest Allies by 1. Revenge: Boost all other Lowest Allies by 2.: Seems super appealing in this list, and she offers great value sometimes, despite being slow and situational.  Her biggest problem is Nilfgaard, which can block a lot of her value with strategically timed cow carcasses and emissaries.  Still a great budget replacement.

Crone: BrewessDeploy: Play all other Crones from your Deck./Crone: WeavessDeploy: Play all other Crones from your Deck./Crone: WhispessDeploy: Play all other Crones from your Deck.: These cards are…honestly pretty overrated.  They are clunky, take up a lot of silver slots, and weaken Ge’els.  Definitely not a bad choice for this list, and great budget replacements, but I find it runs a bit better without them.

RoachWhenever you play a Gold card from your Hand (note: does not include Leaders), play this Unit from your Deck on a random row before that card resolves.: I think this card’s amazing and would love to run him in this list but he’s a bit awkward with Ge’els.

Marching OrdersBoost the Lowest Bronze or Silver Unit from your Deck by 2 and play it.: It’s a consideration, as it pulls out Iris and Water Hag.  Pulling them out randomly is a bit awkward, and pulling Iris out at 5 strength can be awkward, even if you don’t have to kill her.  Still a great budget replacement.

ShadowDeploy: Play a Bronze Monster Deathwish Unit from your Deck. Shuffle the others back./HarpyWhenever a Beast Ally is Destroyed during your turn, play 1 copy of this Unit from your Deck. Deploy: Damage the Lowest Enemy by 1.: Somewhat inconsistent, and their value ceiling isn’t high enough to make up for their low floor, which is drawing them dead.

Mulligan

Open by blacklisting foglets.  You can elect to get rid of archgriffin and first light against skellige and nilfgaard if you don’t expect weather.  You can drop lacerate if you don’t have Iris, although it can still achieve great value against nilfgaard early on.  Drop Bloodcurdling Roar if not against nilfgaard as it’s mostly a tech for that matchup.  Drop Bekker’s Twisted Mirror against monsters, as they will have too many 1-str units for it to be reliable.  Lastly you can drop an Earth Elemental if the rest of your hand is good, you’re fishing for something, and you have at least 5 total combination of harpies and earth elementals.  If you haven’t seen foglets all mulligan, make sure you decline your third mulligan in practically all cases.

Round 1 

Generally open by playing Earth Elemental, as it’s your most non-committal play.  Keep this Earth Elemental on the right side of your melee row, as spawned harpies landing on that row will then trigger its deathrattle. Play a fog from hand when the opponent commits a unit, unless your foglets would land in weather.  If you have no bronze fog, use Dagon.  In general, try to keep one weather on the board, but avoid playing multiple weathers at the same time, as the opponent will generally wait for you to play a second weather before using their clear skies, and you’re much better off keeping that pressure with that one weather, as they are basically locked out of the option of using clear skies until you commit more (although in some scenarios, often round 3, you’ll need to know when to push for additional weathers).

Continue into the round playing celaeno harpies and earth elementals, possibly using a Fire Elemental if you’re ever 13 or more points behind.  Bloodcurdling Roar any cow carcasses, and Archgriffin any weathers.  Use Bekker’s Twisted Mirror if you ever have a situation that presents a good value (16+ swing), although saving it for round 3 can be situationally strong as well.  When the round goes sufficiently deep, use Iris or Caranthir (using Ge’els to try to find one of these can be good too).  Against Skellige, place Iris to the right of a longship to threaten it dying, and against Monsters play Iris on the right end of a stacked row; if you kill an egg and it hatches a harpy next to her, she’ll trigger her deathrattle without dying. Iris will often threaten them out of the round, at which point if you can beat their score without popping Iris, she’ll die going into the next round, and buff all of your hatched harpies and lesser elementals for the start of next round.  If they don’t pass, you can force out the current round by triggering the Iris with lacerate, Water Hag, or weathers.

Be aware that in many situations you may intentionally play Iris outside of weathers to ensure that she won’t be triggered until next round.  With Caranthir, play him in the row you expect the opponent to occupy with late units: against monsters and skellige, generally the siege row, and against nilfgaard, melee or siege.  If they clear Caranthir’s frost, you can dagon to re-frost or lacerate that row for massive value.  If you’re able to win round 1 with 6+ units being carried over into next round AND Iris going off, you have probably won the game already.

Rounds 2-3

Hopefully you were able to win round 1.  If you win round 1 with either Iris buff being carried over, or a Yennefer in hand, you’re generally in a very good position.  More often than not you’ll have at very least 4 units to start the board with.  If you have Yennefer, start swarming units very quickly onto the board (fire elemental, woodland spirit, celaeno harpy), then slam Yennefer with generally ~10+ more units than the opponent for huge value.  If you lose round 1 but have a solid carryover going into round 3, the same rules apply: try to save Yennefer for the start of round 3 and surge ahead in units before playing her.  Ultimately the later rounds of this deck are very straightforward.  If you’re able to assert enough pressure in early rounds, the game should be effectively secured.  Good luck.  🙂

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6 thoughts on “Swim’s Dagon Deathswarm Monsters – Open Beta

  1. Taminok
    June 16, 2017 at 2:24 am

    How is this deck performing in ranked?

    Reply
    • Jonathan Heath
      June 16, 2017 at 12:44 pm

      I don’t know what your rank is but I am currently Rank 6 at 750 rating. At this level I am having few problems. Using hounds to bait the weather clears in the first round. Then if I feel like its favorable I’ll push the long round 1 into an insta-win round 2. If not then whatever I have invested into round 1 I try to bait a few more cards for advantage and pass. If I lost its a long round 2 casting everything I need to to win. Which in most cases sets me up still for a pretty big round 3.

      The key is baiting with frosts so you have fogs later in the rounds/game for the foglets. Also knowing when to pass and to manipulate card advantage. Honestly this deck isn’t as strong as it once was. It does get the job done though and is still a very viable deck. Just needs some tweaking in my opinion which is what I did for my elo.

      Reply
  2. devo
    June 14, 2017 at 3:55 pm

    is it the same after the last patch update?

    Reply
    • jonathan heath
      June 16, 2017 at 12:08 pm

      Hey devo, though I am not swim , I have been playing this deck exclusively for 2 weeks now. I can tell you the turn two win is almost always the same that hasn’t changed. Nor did the patch really change anything about the decks premise in regards to how it’s played. A few base stat changes but nothing to worry about.

      The bigger changes are the other decks you’ll be facing. Most importantly, in my experience so far, Skellige burn, Wild Hunt frost, and Elves (specifically the one elf that keeps growing “Hawker” something or other). I was doing so well winning on average every 2 out 3 games at least. Then all of a sudden I’ve found huge flaws.

      Huge influx of weather removal/resilient enemies
      Inability to handle huge bodies
      And how weak are swarm is in the first round.

      So I took out mirror (it’s good but I’ve found a few instances where I needed it to win it switched with the opponents creatures / carcasses/ things stuck in weather), I took out iris ( she’s still a potential flex but with horn and yen almost always in hand seemed redundant.), and I toke out fire elemental (just wasn’t proving to useful in most my match ups. I replaced those three with Jotun, scorch, and the monster spy unit. Which allows me to make sure the enemies board is set up how I want it to be. Then I took out 1 earth ele, 1 fog, and roar. Threw in 2 hounds and 2 frosts making 26 cards.

      I have been doing much better so far. Hope it helps.

      Reply
  3. Trancenergy2
    June 12, 2017 at 5:29 pm

    Maybe i didnt figure out how to play this but i dont find great success with this version.
    Having no crones make u lack tempo in case of enemy early pass.
    And having no Ciri makes u have card disadvantage almost every game.
    Vs weather heavy decks there’s not enough clear.
    And having no Crones for thining deck makes u have too much of utility silver cards and no actual big board.
    Can u show how to play the latest version?

    Reply
    • Gayster
      June 13, 2017 at 8:24 pm

      Does he not show it in the video he linked in this guide? I think he played 3 games with this deck. Either this video, or another video on his youtube channel shows this deck version.

      Reply

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