"When you play the game of thrones, you win or you die. There is no middle ground."
–Cersei Lannister, A Game of Thrones
The world of George R.R. Martin’s A Song of Ice and Fire series comes to life in A Game of Thrones Card Game, a game of military conflicts, political intrigues, and power struggles in the world of Westeros. In this engaging Living Card Game, players become the leaders of eight unique factions, forming strategies and building decks to defeat their enemies and gain power over the Seven Kingdoms. Now, to aid your entry to this world of conflict and betrayal, Fantasy Flight Games is pleased to announce the upcoming release of eight new Intro Decks for A Game of Thrones: The Card Game!
These instructive Intro Decks are designed to introduce new players to the mechanics, environment, and key characters of A Game of Thrones: The Card Game, providing a stable foundation and highlighting the unique features of each faction. Each pre-constructed deck contains sixty-nine cards—a full sixty-card deck (containing 1x, 2x, and 3x cards) with seven plots, a faction card, and an agenda card. With one of these decks, you'll have everything that you need to begin your battles right away, whether you're battling another intro decks or playing against a custom deck built by other players.
Even if you're a veteran player, there are still plenty of reasons to pick up the Intro Decks. Not only is it a great way to get additional copies of commonly played neutral cards and plots, like Marched to the Wall (Core Set, 15), you can also use them as a tool to invite new players to experience your battles for the Iron Throne! What's more, every Intro Deck features an alternate-design faction card and a copy of the Fealty (Core Set, 27) agenda emblazoned with the sigil of your chosen faction—making this the perfect way to spread your loyalty to your other decks!
For more information on the strategies pursued by each faction in its Intro Deck, read on!
Winter Is Coming
Cold and unyielding, the Stark family has guarded the north for thousands of years. Their judgement is harsh and final, specializing in military challenges. The House Stark Intro Deck is designed to be aggressive and direct, putting your opponent on their back foot. With a surplus of fearsome fighters like Greatjon Umber (Sands of Dorne, 33) andGrey Wind (Core Set, 145), you're ready to honorably face your opponent on the battlefield.
The Starks also believe in sacrifice for the greater good. While it may pain you to lose a member of your House, their card abilities may well be worth the price. Bran Stark (Core Set, 142) can cancel an enemy’s event, potentially saving many with his sacrifice. Beyond this, characters like Catelyn Stark (Wolves of the North, 2) and her beloved son Robb Stark (Core Set, 146) can draw further strength from deaths and sacrifices as these losses strengthen their resolve. When the winds of winter howl, the lone wolf dies, but the pack survives.
Hear Me Roar
The Wardens of the West, the Lannisters, are one of the wealthiest families in the seven kingdoms. But while the Lannisters have wealth in abundance, they desire power and they are ruthless in their pursuit of it. The House Lannister Intro Deck uses both military and intrigue challenges to gain control of the battle. With warriors like Ser Jaime Lannister (Core Set, 87), it is a simple matter to clear your opponent’s board of characters. Then, your masters of intrigue like Cersei Lannister (Lions of Casterly Rock, 1) can shred any plans your enemy has formed around the cards in their hand and leave them at the mercy of fate, relying solely on the top cards of their deck.
When you swear fealty to the Lions of Casterly Rock, the House Lannister Intro Deck provides you with a surplus economy, held in locations such as Golden Tooth (Lions of Casterly Rock, 17), and characters like Tyrion Lannister(Core Set, 89). The Lannister’s gold can be used to pay off Clansmen like the Burned Men (Core Set, 91) and Black Ears(Journey to Oldtown, 29) and add them to their cause. These men may only be loyal to gold, but with the wealth of Casterly Rock at your disposal, they are sure to prove a profitable investment.
We Do Not Sow
House Greyjoy has ruled the Iron Islands since the conquest of Aegon Targaryen, surviving in the unforgiving climate by reaving their neighbors and taking what is theirs. The ironborn prefer to fight uncontested, striking quickly before their enemies can establish a solid defense. But perhaps their greatest strength lies in stealth. The House Greyjoy Intro Deck features an abundance of cards with this keyword, including the Kraken’s daughter, Asha Greyjoy (Kingsmoot, 51), enabling you to collect power quickly through unopposed challenges.
Asha is at her most confident and most powerful when she is acting as the commander of her ship, Black Wind(Journey to Oldtown, 32), which equips her with renown so she can seize even more power while you pillage your enemy’s deck. To assist Asha with her mission, you can fill your ranks with pillaging Raiders like Euron Crow's Eye(Core Set, 69) and Black Wind's Crew (Core Set, 72). By claiming your victory with speed and ferocity, you will stake your claim to the Seven Kingdoms. All who stand against you shall pay the iron price.
Ours Is the Fury
As the ruling House of the Seven Kingdoms, the Baratheons gain control by forcing their enemies to bend the knee. They also specialize in power challenges, the key to accumulating power and ultimately earning victory in A Game of Thrones: The Card Game. Stannis Baratheon (Core Set, 52) can minimize your opponent’s ability to regroup after they have deployed their forces. By joining forces with his elder brother Robert Baratheon (Core Set, 48), these noblemen can dominate the field of battle.
When you're in command of the House Baratheon Intro Deck, you can exert your dominance to accumulate further power at the end of each round. Robert Baratheon and Thoros of Myr (Journey to Oldtown, 3) both share renown keyword, while attachments such as Disputed Claim (Lions of Casterly Rock, 3) can grant renown to any Lord, Lady, or Bastard. Any traitorous House that rises in rebellion will be fighting an uphill battle. By maintaining your hold on the Seven Kingdoms and reminding your subjects who their true king is, the Iron Throne will be secure in your hands for generations to come.
House Tyrell rules the rich area of the Reach with a quiet class and dignity. This noble House is filled with Lords, Ladies, and Knights worthy of song, all led by The Queen of Thorns (Core Set, 186). While they never ruled as kings, the Tyrells are ambitious, relying on intrigue and cooperation within their House to quietly gather strength and power before their enemies take notice.
In the House Tyrell Intro Deck, you will find powerful allies who can compound their strength to assist your claim to the throne. For example, Margaery Tyrell (Core Set, 181) can be knelt to increase another character's STR for the duration of the phase. If she uses this ability to bolster Brienne of Tarth (House of Thorns, 2), who may be wielding Heartsbane (Core Set, 191), the Lady becomes nearly unstoppable with eleven STR. In turn, Brienne can increase the STR of yet another character. While a rose may be the greatest beauty of a garden, only a fool would dare forget the thorns.
Unbowed, Unbent, Unbroken
Ruling the southernmost region of Westeros, House Martell is separated from the rest of the Seven Kingdoms by both geography and by culture. In the sweltering deserts of Dorne, this House has patiently awaited vengeance for the death of their beloved princess Elia for nearly two decades. Their patience is unmatched, but now that Westeros has fallen into chaos, the Martells know that this is the time to strike.
When employing the House Martell Intro Deck, your strategy is often to act cunningly, waiting for your opponents to move so that you can launch an effective counterstrike. As such, you are equipped with cards like Doran Martell(Sands of Dorne, 1), Dornish Spy (The Brotherhood Without Banners, 115), and Shadow City Bastard (Sands of Dorne, 16), which focus on icon manipulation and the long game, so that you may choose your battles and execute a single grand strike with deadly precision. At the opportune moment, you can send out fighters like The Red Viper (Oberyn’s Revenge, 95) to make sure that your enemies' crimes are exposed before all of Westeros.
Fire and Blood
After fleeing Westeros during Robert’s Rebellion, the last surviving members of House Targaryen lived in secret, constantly under threat from assassins. Now, under the lead of Daenerys Targaryen (Core Set, 160), House Targaryen will reclaim what is theirs with fire and with blood. This House shines in military challenges with skilled warriors like Grey Worm (The Fall of Astapor, 53) and Qotho (House of Thorns, 37).
This faction gathers around its powerful leaders, but those who follow House Targaryen and support their claim to their Iron Throne know that the act is treasonous and dangerous. Their cause goes beyond simple allegiance to true belief, and many are willing to sacrifice themselves for the cause. The Freedmen (The Brotherhood Without Banners, 113) owe their independence to Daenerys and they will gladly face any danger for her. This loyalty is often rewarded, when House Targaryen succeeds, they may be freed again and again.
Night Gathers, and Now My Watch Begins
The history of the Night’s Watch dates back to the Age of Heroes, but this once proud order has regretfully been nearly forgotten by the proud lords of Westeros. Once you take command of the order with the Night’s Watch Intro Deck, you will be able recruit for your ranks from the discarded characters of your enemies with card like Old Bear Mormont (Watchers on the Wall, 3) and Sworn to the Watch (Watchers on the Wall, 22). Once these new recruits Take the Black (Core Set, 139), the Night’s Watch will guard the realms of men against the threats that gather in the north.
The key duty of the Night’s Watch is to defend The Wall (Core Set, 137) at the few standing castles along its length. Specializing in defensive tactics, the stalwart men of the Watch like Jon Snow (Watchers on the Wall, 6) and Defender of the Wall (Oberyn’s Revenge, 85) will ensure that you never fall before your enemies. Unlike the other Houses of A Game of Thrones: The Card Game, as a brother of the Night’s Watch, you do not fight for a family. Your duty is to the realm, and if the only way to protect the Seven Kingdoms is to claim the Iron Throne, then that is precisely what you must do.
Declare Your Allegiance
As the great Houses of Westeros go to war, you cannot stand idle. Where do your loyalties lie? Decide your alliance and join the battle for the Iron Throne! In future articles, we'll reveal the full decklists for each of the Intro Decks and you can look for them to be released in the third quarter of 2018!