(To the tune of “Do You Wanna Build a Snowman”)
Do you wanna build a Type Two?
They are so fun to play
Wasn’t sure it could be so
I tried it though
And I’ve never gone away
If you want a challenge
And something new
Then why not give it a try!
Do you wanna build a Type Two?
Then please give me a chance to help you!
Okay, now that we’ve got that out of the way, (and now that I might have gotten that song stuck in your head), let’s get down to business. Over the course of the next couple months, I will be writing a series of articles about T2 deck-building and strategy. These articles will cover a wide range of topics regarding T2 and will include sample decks, analysis of commonly used strategies, discussion of character to enhancement ratios, lists of “bargain” cards that are great for T2 and don’t cost a lot to obtain, tips on tweaking a deck, and many other things. To have a little fun with it, we’re going to have a Frozen-themed series—hence the opening.
Before I go any further, I’d like to share a bit about my history with Type 2. Before I became a part of the Redemption community and knew about the forum (or that there were actual tournaments), my brothers and I would often play multi-player games with our own set of rules. We would build giant decks with multiple copies of our strongest cards (essentially T2 decks), but we didn’t use T2 rules like Rescuer’s Choice or Experience Credit (if you aren’t already familiar with these rules, we’ll explore them later in this series). We also didn’t really “finish” games—I mean who wants to stop at 5 Redeemed Souls when you still have so many fun cards left in your deck, right? So we would often just keep games going—seeing who could rescue the most lost souls or make the most blocks. Many times games would be paused and continued the next day where we left off.
That went on for a couple years and we got some of our friends from church playing (much the same way we did with giant decks) until one day my brothers attended a small local tournament at a Christian bookstore. It was there that they discovered how decks were actually meant to be built and received some help from a Redemption legend—Michael “The Quadrate” Turnidge. He helped them build balanced 56 card T1 decks using the brigades for which they had the strongest cards. The game began to make a lot more sense to us and we quickly found that we enjoyed the “new” way of playing. In 2003, I played in and won my very first T1 2P tournament using a deck that was based on Transfiguration and playing it multiple times by recurring it from the discard pile with Moses and Elders and Lost Coin Found.
I had an awesome final game against The Quadrate himself in which he made a rescue with Ethiopian Treasurer and played Authority of Christ Promo to wipe out my entire territory of Brown Evil Characters. However, I had saved Athaliah in my hand and upon blocking with her, I played the dreaded Haman’s Plot to defeat Ethiopian Treasurer, which allowed me to win on my next turn by a score of 5-4.
After the 2003 season, I began to miss the old way my brothers and I used to play where I could have multiple copies of my best cards. I decided to try building a T2 deck since that would allow me to do so. I was immediately hooked. I still play T1 quite a bit, and I even played T1 2P instead of T2 2P at Nationals one year, but given a choice I will nearly always choose to play T2 whether it’s a two-player game or a multi-player game. In Minnesota, we are fortunate enough to host the annual “T2 Only” tournament, which for me is the best tournament of the season outside of Nationals.
That’s enough about me though, let’s start talking decks. I would like to start from the very beginning—creating a T2 deck for the very first time. Many who are reading this will already be past that point, but I would like to start there anyway for the sake of those who aren’t.
There are a couple ways to go about creating your first T2 deck. For some people it might be taking their current favorite T1 deck and simply increasing it by doubling or tripling up on the best cards until they reach the 100 card minimum (if you have not yet done so, please check out the T2 deck building rules in the most recent Redemption rulebook as I am going to write these articles under the assumption that readers will have an understanding of the deck-building rules). This is a great way to go about creating a first T2 deck because you are already familiar with the cards you are using and you should have experience on how to best utilize them from playing T1. Say for example that you have a very strong T1 Judges deck. It should come as no surprise to you then that Judges are also very strong in T2 (in fact decks with a Judges offense have won the past 3 National titles in T2 2P).
Another option is to choose a specific theme or strategy that you would like to try, or maybe one that you have already tried in T1, but found that it didn’t have enough cards to be effective when you could only have one copy of each card. Perhaps you’ve tried a Choose the Blocker deck in T1, but found that the various Choose the Blocker cards are spread out through too many different brigades that the offense was not cohesive enough to perform well consistently. In T2, you can use multiple copies of the same Choose the Blocker card (such as Provisions) in order to keep your offense in one or two brigades.
Another way to start a deck is to look at decks that people have posted either as concepts or as actual decks they have used. Countless times I have surveyed decklists in the T2 deck section and Nationals Winners section on the Redemption forum looking for inspiration. Sometimes by looking at multiple decks, an idea will pop into my head that takes one concept from one deck and another concept from another deck and then figures out a card that will tie those two concepts together to create some awesome synergy. Just as it is in T1, deck synergy is incredibly important in T2, and the more of it you can create, the better your deck will perform.
One final way to create a deck is to look at older cards that currently might not see much use in the common decks of today and look for ways to combo them with cards from the more recent sets. This is probably my personal favorite way to create decks though it requires a very comprehensive knowledge of the Redemption card pool. A great example in a deck I built recently was to use the Nicolas of Antioch Promo in the same deck as Forgiveness of Joseph. Because FoJ does not have a condition (i.e. “If used by a Genesis Hero”) Nicolas of Antioch can recur and use it over and over if the opponent is playing with NT human evil characters.
I can then add Joseph to the offense for his “cannot be negated” power as well as multiple copies of Abraham’s Descendant (one of the most powerful good enhancements in T2). I’ve only added two Heroes and two enhancements, but I’ve already got great synergy between an OT Hero and a NT Hero as well as enhancements that can be used by both. My next addition might be the Apostles version of Thomas. I now have two Heroes that can play my main battle winner in CBN fashion and I’m still only in one brigade—awesome! The old Nicolas of Antioch and the old Thomas rarely see play because their recent reprints are in the brigades for their themes (Clay and Purple respectively), but often times we can find uses for old characters because they are in the “wrong” brigade. Later on in the series, I’ll talk more about this crazy Blue offense that uses non-Genesis Heroes in very powerful ways.
All of these methods of starting a T2 deck are valid and I encourage you to spend some time thinking about which method might best fit you. Please feel free to submit specific questions or T2 topic ideas that you would like to see in one of the future articles.
Until next time…
Do you wanna build a Type Two?
I really hope you do
I always love fresh ideas
And things to try
To give me something new
You have to start somewhere
And why not here
Might as well give it a chance!
If you wanna build a Type Two
Let me help you build a Type Two.
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