#1: Find the decks mission
What is my strategy and what is my goal to win with the deck (Board control? Damage? Particular finisher? etc.) and what archetype it is going to be (aggro, aggro-control, mid-range, control). Just looking at cards for board control, balancing with draw and allies isn’t just the answere of building a deck because without using the point I mentioned above, there is no point to continue.
#2: Check and identify the card pool
Now when you know what deck you want, let’s analyze cards that will fit your goal with the deck. For example; aggro usually wants cheap allies to be able to cast them and deal as much damage as possible before the late game while control is looking for card advantage and hindering opponents plans to win. Look into the particular cards that does what you want it to do when it comes to support your strategy. Your hero choice does often make a part of what card choice is and don’t forget it’s also a source of some synergy.
Now when you have analyzed the individual cards that seem to fit in the strategy, let’s go to the next point.
#3: Look at the deck structure
You’ve found out what you want but you also need to win with the deck. The most important cards you pretty much need every game and preferably early, you run 4x of them while running 3x or 2x is when you need it at some point of game but not too early or when the card has Unique status. 1x acts as a situational card, a sliver bullet if you want to call it that way, you don’t like to draw it at all until or unless in a specific circumstance; or acts as a 5th card to something similar you already use when 4x isn’t enough.
Have the resource curve in mind. Majority of your spells will somewhere be around 2cc-4cc because if doing the other way around, having more 4cc-6cc cards than anything else, you will have issues playing in early turns while the high cost cards is just waiting there for too long. It’s better to play things early and you eventually draw the high cost cards while your early play does the work. Note that you don’t rely on late game, high cost cards isn’t needed or sometimes, not many and it also depends on just the deck.
Try to keep the deck at 40 cards (39 + hero). This helps the deck to be more consistent and to draw the key cards in time. If that’s a difficult part, read the next point.
#4: Tweak the deck
Ask yourself: Is this card going to do anything worth with the deck? Some cards might actually look better than they actually do in action. If you want to build an attachment deck, putting every attachment from the game and call it a deck, you’re doing it wrong. Not all attachment is good. You need to trim it down to the point you have the best of them left. Sometimes, the only way to realize it is doing some play-testing.
No deck is perfect and decks do always have some weaknesses. The best you can do is to cover up some holes, looking and put in cards to protect your strategy and sometimes if you play more control, try to disrupt theirs to protect yourself. Again… play-testing will be a huge part to discover this.
Have a good knowledge of deck popularity (aka knowledge of meta) will shape of how your deck product is going to be. The meta is like a living organism. It has different shape as it evolves which also means your deck is going to do it too. Analyze the popular deck of how they play and how they run, get to know what their builds is weak of and not least, what is your deck’s weakness and how to cover that up. Let’s say that Warrior plays a huge part in the meta. Their massive card advantage is drawn with BF while having Crippling Blow as a cheap cost removal. Mind it as when you tune the deck by having some sort of tech cards for these things bot don’t overextend with the amounth of pure tech cards as it will hurt your overall deck consistency. Aggro is rarely running them as you want to force them to answer you and not vice versa.
#6: FF’s final notes
I’m keeping away from doing a strict chart of what deck should use and not to use because I think it differs from actual individual decks to another. Strict charts is also less relevant now that some decks particular in SF, it only hinders them. Draw engine is overrated because there is other source of getting into advantage and some decks doesn’t need it at all because of low resource curve and that they can aggro before card advantage is relevant.
I think I’ve covered up the basics of deckbuilding. Now try it yourself!
*Originally written by FlyingFerrari at shadowera.com