Jhugs’s Last Interview | Goodbye From Bandit Gang | Exclusive

Babyjosus: Last year you became a father and had less time to be active for Bandit Gang. What’s it like to be a father?

Jhugs: Being a father is the hardest thing I’ve ever done, but also the most rewarding. I wouldn’t change any second of it.

BJ: I would like to become a father myself someday. But back to what we are here for. You are leaving Bandit Gang. How did you enjoy your stay in the team?

J: I loved my time with BG. Everyone was respectful, friendly, and always willing to help each other in any way. When the world was amidst a pandemic, BG and Gwent were there to help keep me sane.

BJ: So what was your most memorable moment in BG?

J: My most memorable moment with BG is when I competed in the Duel of Dogs tourney and was able to hang with some of the big names in Gwent. I was really proud of myself and my teammates that day.

BJ: Are there any future plans?

As of now, I’m not sure what the future holds. If I ever get more free time I may return to content creation in some form whether it be YouTube, Twitch, or something else. We’ll just have to wait and see.

BJ: What do you want to say to the fans of BG that have supported you throughout your time here?

J: Keep supporting BG any way you can because these guys are the real deal!

BJ: Thank you for everything and we will miss you!

J: I will miss you guys too…

You can read more about Jhugs on the Honorable Mentions page here.

Bandit Gang’s Meme Snapshot for Gwent #2


A meme deck can be considered many things. Some people believe that a meme deck is mainly played for fun, to make yourself and the opponent laugh, and not to win with. A deck like Thicc Aglais would be a good example. Other people believe that meme decks have their own theme like the bandit archetype, which makes it a lore friendly deck. And most people would agree that a meme deck is also considered an off-meta deck: a deck that has its own unusual strategy or inclusions, but that can still win you plenty of games. You could think of a deck like Triple Commandos here.

But I digress. Welcome to the second edition of Bandit Gang’s Meme Snapshot! In case you missed out on our first edition, you can find it here. This time, we wanted to use new concepts that weren’t included in the first edition, but you might also see different versions of decks that were included already. The main goal, as always, is to show you the diversity that is possible in Gwent, beyond all the top tier meta lists. As before, we kept the same 3 categories:

1. Fun But Garbage Decks: these are the decks that are just for fun but will not win you any games 90% of the time. 

2. Lore Friendly Decks: these are decks that are based around a certain theme that is often lore based. 

3. Becoming A Pro Decks: these are decks that are considered off meta, but are decent to climb to Pro Rank with. Nonetheless, they are not included in the Meta Snapshots.

Note: Click on the image of the deck to get directed to the PlayGwent website in order to import the deck to your client.

Fun But Garbage

must be one of my favorite cards from the Price of Power expansion. The first thing I thought when I saw her was: how can I abuse it? Of course, the answer is expensive (or high-provision) specials. But which one is the best? SHUPE! As you may already guess, the idea is to play Shupe twice. Try to protect Francesca by letting the opponent remove other engines. Count how many spells you have and look out to not copy a different spell by accident.

-When it works, you can get tons of points or even double carryover!
-Can generate a lot of long round value
-You get to play ST, which is rare

-Draw dependent
-It can be tricky to time Francesca perfectly
-Can easily lose against heavy control decks

Core Cards:
Avallac’h: Recent buffs made this card very good in mid-range decks. It can easily get its full value and the choice is flexible. Also, it triggers spell counter.

Gezras: The god of swarm finishers. Not only can he boost your row filled with Whisper of Dol Blathanna and treants but he also can generate offensive value.

Harald Gord: While he is not in a deck in this version, you might consider putting him in the deck. All units that generate spells can make him bigger and worth playing.

Written by Bomblin.

This was the first meme I made from the new Price of Power, expansion. The idea is to create as many Vigilantes as possible. If you manage to create a lot, every enemy that receives a bounty status will instantly die. Moreover, with The Witchfinder on the board, you can just pass and enjoy the victory!

-Possibility of huge *pew* *pew* *pew*
-Can destroy greedy decks in a long round 3
-Gives a chance for an amazing hero pass

-Vulnerable to bleed
-Veil is your worst enemy
-Not very good against control meta

Core Cards:
Igor the Hook: helps you make as many Vigilantes as possible. Use all your coins just to create your masked boys.

Idarran/Megascope: The beauty of this combo is that you have a guaranteed value from Idarran if you use him after copying a card with Megascope. If he stays longer, Igor is your best friend.

Savolla/Moreelse: These two cards have no direct synergy with the whole deck concept but lets you get a nice tempo in round 1 to force the opponent to pass. This way, you have a higher chance to get to a long round 3. Also, they work great with all the coins you generate
from bounties.

Written by Bomblin.

Salamander combo was always one of the coolest looking combos and at the same time, very satisfying to watch. With changes to Jackpot, we now have a new payoff card: Roland Bleinheim. Now, when he is on the board during a combo, you get a huge boost of points from every poisoned target! Buffs to other cards also made the deck good in round 1, which it’s crucial to win.

-Looks amazing!
-Can easily win against engine heavy decks.
-If Roland survives, you can’t lose.

-Relies heavily on the combo.
-Can be bled easily.
-It’s awkward if you get to a short round 3 or you miss your combo pieces.

Core Cards:
Salamander:  You need to be careful! Remember that you need 7 coins to trigger the tribute or your combo won’t work! You can transfer the poison from Roland to Salamander using Salamandra Hideout to instantly kill it for Renew.

Lieutenant Von Herst: The idea behind this guy is to create a lot of units for your combo. The more units on the board, the more poison you can apply which means more points for Roland!

Thinning bois: Both Sewer Raiders and Casino Bouncers give you a fast and nice thinning option for round 1. Combining their bodies with the power of Gellert Bleinheim gives you a chance to easily win round 1.

Written by Bomblin.

This is a full meme deck! Do not craft! The idea is to make Istredd as big as possible. Hide him behind the defender and let him grow. In round 3, use renew on him and let him grow again. Finish the game with a nice Snowdrop + Istredd combo! Look out! If you draw more cards than you can hold, you will mill cards from your HAND!

-Big snowdrop
-Opponent will not know whats going on
-It’s consistent because of leader!

-You rarely win
-You can self mill cards from your hand
-Super vulnerable to any removal

Core Cards:
Foltest: Combining him with Blue Stripes Commandos can win you round 1 easily if your opponent has no answer for both defender and Foltest. It also shuffles more cards into your deck which works great with big Istredd.

Queen Adalia: with Cintrian Spellweaver, Adalia can be the machine gun that can steal the win in any round.

Pavetta: Works well with both Commandos and Dun Banners! With Pincer Maneuver, it is a guaranteed that you will drop at least one part of the combo.

Written by Bomblin.

I love hyperthin. In the last snapshot, I presented NR hyperthin, Syndicate hyperthin and, of course, Nilfgaard hyperthin is now around everywhere on the ladder. Here, however, I bring something new – Skellige hyperthin! It is easily possible due to the number of discards you have and the inclusion of Jutta that generates tons of value.

-Super consistent
-Can easily win round 1 if you draw perfectly due to discard package
-Unique and unexpected

-Auto loses against mill
-Like really auto loses against mill
-Sequencing, especially in the end, can be super tricky, awkward, and sub-optimal

Core Cards:
Snowdrop: with all the discard cards, Snowdrop can get to very high points super quickly. If you also have Coral on the board, your discard not only gives you consistency but also boosts and damages! It also fixes your hand!

Blaze of Glory + Sigrdrifa’s Rite is a nice finisher up to 24 points that the opponent cannot really prepare for. As a backup, you can use Covenant of Steel. The consideration for the deck is to also put An Craite Greatsword into it.

Ciri: Nova: nice carryover points that can guarantee you a pass in round 2 or bonus points in a short round 3. Also baits removal.

Written by Bomblin.

This experiment was brewed in the Kalvino + Bomblin laboratory. There are two combos in the deck. The first one is the great synergy with Idarran and Queensguards. You can get 2 spawns just by clicking it once! The second combo is Yennefer -> you want to play as many annoying cards for your opponent to deal with (Harald, Olgierd, totem, Veteran) and then just use Yennefer for damage! You will get only benefits, will your opponent will suffer tremendous pain!

-Super awkward for your opponent to deal with some cards
-Has a fun and unique combo
-Do not need that much consistency – only Yennefer is necessary.

-Can be out greeded by heavy engine/armor decks (e.g. Koschey).
-You can over-swarm
-Heavy control decks can deal with your cards easily

Core Cards:
Cerys: can be used as a tempo and thin tool in the melee row but can be also used as an engine generator on the range row. Flexibility is always welcome!

Dire Bear: Tech for Koschey decks that work like a charm! It is quite powerful against other match-ups!

Olgierd: Super clunky to deal with for your opponent. He is a master of soaking random damage (weather, Ballista, Madoc). He also works well with Svalblod Priest and Yennefer!

Written by Bomblin.

Lore Friendly

In the most recent patch, we got a tiny buff to Adriano. It inspired me to make a whole deck around just this tiny buff. The plan is to make AS MANY SEDUCTRESSES AS POSSIBLE. This will result in your opponent being unable to play any card without losing points especially if your opponent uses tutor cards like Menno/Fauve etc.

-Can out greed any deck
-Powerful in both long and short rounds
– ( ͡°͜ʖ ͡°)

-Control decks can easily deal with your early low tempo
Korathi Heatwave gets tons of value
-Sometimes lacks coin spenders

Core cards:
Portal: The change to ghoul made it possible to easily use Portal in Syndicate. You can get both engines (Peaches) or raw points (Ghouls). Both help you in round 1.

Igor: Can create a lot of Sly Seductresses and Peaches that overwhelm your opponent. Cards like Swallow and Shakedown let you use the insanity again. And again. And again.

Adriano: The core card! Can give you coins and a nice tempo especially with Passiflora. Be careful to not over profit and to miss the tribute!

Written by Bomblin.

What is better than 1 cow? 5 cows! Germain Piquant is the king of the swarm and he synergizes well with Slave Infantry. The amount of points you can generate is insane! This deck works well in a long round (with cows and bone talisman) but also in a short round (leader, Portal, Slave Infantries).

-Amazing long round with all the swarm and Bone Talisman
-Have a nice mix of small combos

-Pinging damage and destroy the deck
-Draw dependent, so consistency can be an issue
–Vulnerable to bleed

Core cards:
Triss: My favorite flexible card. You can play her as a short round value card with Imperial Diplomacy or battle preparation or you can play her as another bone talisman with a body. Sometimes you can even use your opponent’s good cards!

Portal: Buff to Ard Feainn Tortoise made a perfect Portal target. Card also thins and put big points on the board.

Vreemde/Vrygheff: The “V” officers! The gods of soldier decks have been around for years. Their provision cost is so low that they can easily find their value in a heavy soldier deck. Soldier decks just need a good high provision finisher!

Written by Bomblin.

The deck is all about getting as many beasts in your graveyard for Corrupted Flaminica as possible and then playing Crow Messengers every round. Depending on what you draw, you either go for swarm and purification in round 1 with Siegfried or making copies of Crow Messengers. If you go for the as many beasts in your graveyard as possible route, then make sure to use Rage of the Sea before you play Siegfried. The other route to make copies of Crow Messenger requires you to draw Operator & Megascopes. So judge accordingly based on your hand.

-Amazing short round if you managed to setup Corrupted Flaminica and Crow Messengers well
-You play a deck from someone that reached Top 8 in Gwent Partner tournament
-Its a budget version of Triple Commandos

-Susceptible to row punish
-Draw dependent
Corrupted Flaminica is not your final play, therefore she is vulnerable

Core Cards:
Siegfried of Denesle in order to purify all the tokens.

Corrupted Flaminica because of all the beasts that you get in the graveyard.

Written by Babyjosus.

Becoming A Pro

With the release of Rience, the archetype Hyperthin got a huge buff and all of a sudden Rico has become playable. Alongside cards like Rience, Dead Man’s Tongue, Blightmaker, and  Mage Assassins got also added to the card pool and are a perfect fit for Hyperthin as well. CDPR also buffed Imperial Golem recently which is a good replacement for Tibor. So with all the love the archetype has received, its on the edge of being competitive.

-Tempo plays in round 1 with Blightmaker and Mage Assassin
-Can thin to 0

-The mulligans can be problematic and could force you to play Tactical Decision early
-Cloggers and Mill are your worst nightmare
-Not being able to play Allgod on Rience, Imperial Golem and Affan

Core Cards:
Imperial Golem is the reason why you get value out of cards like Xarthisius, Yennefer: Divination, and Vilgefortz. So make sure he is the only card left in your deck before playing them!

Written by Babyjosus.

An amazing deck was made by my boy Mercernn last season but it still works perfectly fine. It is for me a big surprise that people still do not play Mobilization. This deck just wins! The plan is to overwhelm your opponent with tons of damage from cards like Reinforced Ballista and Lyrian Arbalest. This is a true definition of a good mid-range deck.

-Deck is great both in the long round and in the short round
-Have a lot of different answers from locks, through Korathi Heatwave, to Bloody Baron

-Sometimes you can get screwed by mulligans (Hubert in hand, no soldiers, no Adalia target)
-It is hard to play perfectly
-You can be out-tempoed if you are not careful

Core Cards:
Gerhart: I just love this card. It is super flexible and rewards you for knowing a) what is in your opponent’s deck and; b) for knowing what spells are in the deck builder. He can help you with everything! Row punish, tall punish, points, even thinning!

Falibor: A silent killer. I haven’t seen this card in a looong time but it is just good. It gives you a nice body and a small removal. It is also very easy to line him up for maximum value in the current meta with all your engines.


Written by Bomblin.

Basically the game-plan is to push R1 with Ciri: Dash and Defender. You want them to heatwave either defender or Dash for you. Then you can play Dagur R1 if you have to as well, though you should mainly focus on the discard package. After round 1, if defender got heatwaved you want to try to bleed out their potential answers to Dagur, and then rez Dagur in R3 and hope he sticks. If defender wasn’t heatwaved, go straight to r3 and rez defender, then play Dagur as soon as you think its safe.

-If unanswered, Dagur can generate a lot of points in a long round
-Lots of control options
-Consistent due to discard package

Korathi Heatwave wrecks you
Wild Boar of the Sea can be awkward if you kill everything
-No Sunset Wanderers

 Core Cards:
can win in short round just with leader ability, can carry you to the moon.

 Ciri: Dash can guarantee you final say, which is crucial for Dagur.

 Discard package has amazing consistency and points.

Written by DrCorchit.

Honorable Mentions

While Kalvino is not on Bandit Gang, we consider him as a friend of Bandit Gang, or even the Adored Fan of Bandit Gang. Therefore we include one of his favorite decks in our Meme Snapshot. Of course, this is not something we do for free. We had to strike a deal with him to write his future Deck Guides for the website. So expect a lot more from Kalvino as a Guest Writer!

Even though AcidBunny is still on trial to join Bandit Gang, we decided to include one of his OG decks in the Meme Snapshot, with the reasoning to bully Rasheed of course…

Ahh, the deck that you have all been waiting for. Rasheed’s Monster Mill.  According to Rasheed the deck is quite optimized and will do the milling very well for you. But that’s about it. One golden tip from him is to put your Goliath in different rows to avoid full rows because then they don’t mill anymore.


This was our second Meme Snapshot, we hope you enjoyed it! Hopefully we can all agree on the fact that there are plenty of decks included for all kinds of players that don’t want to contribute to the meta. For players that would like to have a good time, that want to role-play and want to go put their boot in the meta and claim their seats among the kings.

A big thank you to Denpai, Dr.Corchit, Mercernn, Kalvino, AcidBunny & Rasheed for providing us with their decks! Otherwise it would have been somewhat one-sided, with only decks from Bomblin and myself. We hope that we inspired you to create your own memes or own versions of the decks with this Meme Snapshot. But for now, Bomblin and I will fare thee well, and we’ll see you again in Meme Snapshot #3!

Please consider checking out our article section where you can find plenty of articles. From member interviews to deck guides and more!

Freddybabes – What’s In My Deckbuilder?

This is ”Whats In My Deckbuilder?”, a series by Babyjosus where he asks Bandit Gang members and other people from the community to share their insights about what kind of decks they have in their deckbuilder. The decks in one’s deckbuilder often says a lot about the person. This person could be a deckbuilder at heart and plays with his/her own homebrews and even personalizes them by giving them names. But of course you also have the person that looks up a meta snapshot and starts netdecking the best decks from it and might not even bother to give them unique names. Oh well, there is only one way to find out and that is by exposing them through this series!

Freddybabes's Deck Picks

Bounty deck I’ve been playing a lot of, very fun with quite a lot of power.

Generic Keltullis deck with added witch apprentices for when the ladder is very NR heavy.

The best NR deck I’ve played this patch, great value from lots of powerful win cons.

An early build with mages and Priscilla / Dandelion, not super strong but was very fun at start of the patch.

Relict monsters with an Ihuarraquax, not optimal version of this kind of deck but had a blast playing it.

My attempt at a Skellige rain deck, discovered that Melusine cultists aren’t great, but the deck was a blast nonetheless.

Good old-fashioned Nilfgaard, cut Cupbearer for Dead Mans Tongue like a madlad, otherwise pretty similar to what I used at world masters last patch.

Who Is Freddybabes?

Freddybabes aka Freddo is a partnered streamer, YouTuber and competitive player for Team Leviathan Gaming. As a competitive player he managed to win three official Gwent tournaments, usually bringing decks with a special twist. You can find Freddo on Twitter here.

If you missed the eleventh edition of ”What’s In My Deckbuilder?” then you can check that out here. Also please consider checking out our article section where you can find plenty of articles. From member interviews to deck guides and more!

The Essential Guide to Every Word You Need in Gwent

Trained Hawk, illustrated by: Karol Bem

Newcomers to Gwent are often overwhelmed by the vocabulary of guides and instructions. Nobody reads glossaries, and for that reason we have curated terms and concepts with added details that will put you on the level in no time. Mastering these concepts will easily see you to pro rank and beyond. Links have been placed so if one encounters an unfamiliar term, one can easily refer to it lower down the guide, or find an explanation of it in a detailed article. Happy learning!

Note: This page is a fluid piece of work and will be updated to the best of our ability.  

Basic Gwent Terms

Artifact: A card that stays on the battlefield but does not have a strength value. This is the least common type of card. 

Bronze/Gold Cards: Gold cards usually play for more points and cost more provisions than bronze cards. You can add up to 2 copies of the same bronze card to a deck, but golds are limited to one copy. You can distinguish gold cards from bronzes by their golden border.

Provision Cost: In Gwent, every card is assigned a provision cost, roughly meaning how much of your deck’s total resources need to be used to put this card in your deck. It also represents the expected number of points a card will be worth in a game. Provision cost is roughly equal to the expected points a card will play for, with a small percentage on top.  For example, 4 provision cost cards usually play for 4-7 points, and 5 provision cost cards play for 6-8 points.

Red-coin/Blue-coin: Blue-coin means going first in the match, Red-coin means going second. These terms are not included in the game, but are well known among players in the community. See Coin Advantage for the implications of this. 

Special Card: A card that does not have a strength value, and is sent to the graveyard immediately after being played.

Summon: Summoned cards simply appear on the board without being played. Note that this does not trigger Deploy abilities. 

Tempo: The number of points played in a turn. A card is said to be “high tempo” if it puts a large number of points (roughly 8 or more) on the board in a single turn. For example, Old Speartip is high tempo, playing for 12 points in a single turn. Low tempo cards take time to output potential points.  For example, Engines and Scenario cards play for initially low points, and output more as they are procced over following turns. 

Unit: A card that has a strength value and stays on the battlefield. This is the most common type of card.

Card Functions

Brick: When a card plays for less than its intended value. For example, Geralt of Rivia is said to be bricked if your opponent doesn’t control a card with 9 or more strength and it cannot activate its ability.

Control: Cards designed to disrupt the opponent’s strategy, usually through damage or locks e.g. Alzur’s Thunder. Damages a unit by 5 and can remove an engine from the board. Most greedy cards start with 5 or less strength, so standard removals reliably control them.

Engine: Cards that potentially play for more points the longer they stay on the battlefield. Some engines are more threatening than others. In general, if an engine puts out more than 1 point per turn, it is considered threatening. Nekkers are engines, since they are boosted by 1 point every time you play a unit with higher strength.

Finisher: A type of pointslam that plays for more or less points depending on the board state, and is most effective when played at the end of a round. For example, Geralt of Rivia is often used as a finisher, since at the end of the round the opponent is most likely to have a high-strength unit.

Greed: A card (or strategy) is considered greedy if it can play for many points, provided the opponent does not answer it with control cards. Engines are generally considered greedy cards, though they can also function as control if they deal damage over time. The Beast is a popular greedy card from the Monsters faction, while Assimilate is generally a greedy strategy/archetype

Pointslam: Cards that play for a high number of points with minimal risk. For example, Old Speartip is a pointslam card since it plays for 12 points with no downside.

Pre-Condition: Cards that help fulfil other cards’ conditions. For instance, Impera Brigade requires that a Soldier card be on your side of the board to trigger its deploy ability. Thus, a Soldier on your side of the board serves as its pre-condition. 

Tutor: Cards that plays/draws cards from your deck. Tutors can be units, special cards, or artifacts. For example, Oneiromancy is a special card that plays any card from your deck. Tutors often have limitations on the types of card that they can be played. Thus, they brick if there is no card of the required type in the deck.

Key Gameplay Concepts

Bleed: Players who win round control may choose to play deeply into round two to force their opponent to play good cards at sub-optimal times. This process is called bleeding. Not to be confused with the status that damages a unit by 1 at the end of its turn. Click here for a guide on this key practice. 

Blue Coin Abuse: Less common than Red Coin Abuse, this refers to the advantageous use of Stratagems in particular decks in combination with certain cards. For instance, Crystal Skull on Griffin Witcher (in NR Witchers) and Ciri: Dash (in Keltullis decks) are known for this type of abuse.

Card Advantage: If one player has more cards than the other at the start of round 3, they are said to have gained card advantage. Card advantage also guarantees last say, and usually results in winning the game.

Carryover: Some cards can be played in one round and generate points in another round, generating what’s known as carryover. There are several forms of carryover, including handbuff (Circle of Life), deck buff (Allgod, Erland of Larvik), resilience (Ciri: Nova), graveyard setup (Derran), and deck manipulation (Maxii Van Dekkar).

Coin Advantage: Blue coin is considered a disadvantage because if you pass while behind in score, your opponent will almost always gain card advantage. Conversely, a player with Red coin has the option to play extremely low tempo cards and focus on generating carryover. Stratagems help reduce the advantage afforded by Red coin, giving a small point boost to the blue coin player. Click here for a reminder on what coins mean. 

Devotion: A deck fulfils the Devotion requirement when it contains no neutral cards. Certain cards are stronger when their Devotion requirement is met, such as Viraxas. Others, for example, are unusable without it, such as Aen Elle Conqueror, who destroys himself if the condition is not met. Devotion decks tend to have powerful abilities but often lack consistency and/or control.  Note that (non)-devotion status of a deck can often give away its composition. 

Disloyal: Disloyal cards can only be played on the opponent’s side of the board and have “Spying” status. While the unit plays for negative points, these cards usually have Deploy effects that offset their negative initial value. Currently, most Disloyal cards belong to the Nilfgaard faction.

Last Say: Whoever plays the last card of the match is said to have last say. This is important as it allows you to play a tall card without worrying about whether the opponent has a tall punish, or play your own tall punish without worrying that your opponent will play a taller unit. 

Proactivity: Proactive cards are able to play for full or almost full value even when there are no other cards on the board. For example, Svalblod Totem is a proactive card common in Skellige decks. When deckbuilding, always make sure to include some proactive cards to avoid awkward situations when one is starting first in a round, especially when Blue coin. 

Reach: Reach is the number of points you can play in a single turn. Reach is most important to keep track of in round 1 on Red coin. This ensures that should Blue coin pass first, you can win with equal cards left and hence card advantage as they must play a card to win round 2. Similarly, if you are being bled in round 2, catching up in one card will maintain card parity. Reach is roughly equal to the highest tempo card playable, plus your leader ability. Do account for your own and your opponent’s engines. Ideally, one achieves reach without using your leader ability.

Reactivity: Some cards interact with other cards,  playing for no value on an empty board. These cards are reactive. For example, Alzur’s Thunder is a reactive card. Having too many reactive cards in your deck can cause you to struggle when making the first few moves of a round.

Red Coin Abuse: Red coin abuse is a tactic employed by some decks where only reactive damage cards are played, making it difficult for the opponent to develop their board while also forcing the opponent to use up proactive cards. Another form of Red coin abuse involves out-tempoing the opponent in round 1, usually allowing the player to pass while out of reach, gaining card advantage in the process. This tactic is often used by Lippy Gudmund decks in conjunction with Cerys an Craite.

Risk: A card’s risk is roughly its immediate strength contribution minus its provision cost, excluding its (conditonal) effects. E.g.  Geralt of Rivia is strength 3, provision cost of 10. This card is quite risky as the difference in minimum points value and provision cost is high. Conversely, Aen Elle Conqueror is very low risk, with 7 strength and 4 provision cost. Generally, a mixture of high and low risk cards prevents control-heavy opponents from preventing your cards from playing for their value. If you take too little risk, you may lose to greedy opponents who play riskier cards and manage to fulfil their conditions. Almost all decks have some control. Thus, it is best to play riskier cards when your opponent runs out of control options.

Round Control: Whoever wins round 1 gains round control as it grants them the option to play as long or short a round 2 as they wish. This may be to lengthen round 3 if one has many engines, or shorten it if one has higher tempo cards, and/or to bleed the opponent of their more useful cards.

Row Punish: As the name suggests, these are cards that punish the opponent for placing too many units on the same row. Lacerate, for instance, damages all units on a row by 2. To avoid getting hit by row punish, spread your units on different rows as necessary.

Standard removal: Because most engines in the game start at 4 or 5 power, standard removal is defined as any card that damages within this range. If an engine is boosted to 6 or more strength, it is said to be out of standard removal range. There are, of course, exceptions to this, such as Whoreson Junior.

Tall Punish: Cards that gain value by targeting a single enemy unit with high power. Geralt of Rivia is an example of tall punish. Avoid tall punish by distributing boosts evenly among units, bleeding the opponent, using a Defender, and putting less high base power units in your deck to begin with.

Tempo Pass: Tempo passing is a technique where a player commits a large number of points quickly in round 1 and passes, exceeding their opponent’s reach. This forces the opponent to play multiple cards to catch up, preventing them from bleeding in round 2. A tempo pass forces a long round 3, and may also force your opponent to use their leader to maintain even cards.

Thinning: In general, you want to have access to your high-end gold cards by the end of the game. Thinning cards remove cards from your deck, improving the chance of drawing your gold cards in round 3. Thinning is provided by tutors as well as cards that can be summoned from the deck, such as Wild Hunt Riders. In general, all tutors provide thinning, but not all thinning comes from tutors. Check out an analysis of this here

Trading Up/Trading down: This refers to the situation where after an exchange of two cards, one player has more (or less) resultant points. This manifests in two ways:

In the points themselves:

For example, if a Northern Realms player plays Temerian Drummer (Which boosts the unit to the right by 1 at the end of its turn) and then their opponent destroys it with Alzur’s Thunder, the Northern Realms player would have traded up by 1 point, as the Drummer has a 1 point boost still on the board.

Note: One should consider potential points when trading removal for engines. 

In the provision cost of the cards

This type of trading occurs when a higher provision cost card is used to negate a lower provision one, or vice-versa. For instance, if Korathi Heatwave at 10 provisions was used to banish a threatening engine like Anna Strenger worth 7 provisions, or if Spores at 4 provisions resets a 9 provision Ozzrel to 1 power. In these cases, it is about how many points you are denying from your opponent, rather than the single-turn provision to provision trade.

Bad Cards

In Gwent, some cards are considered bad cards. These are cards that struggle to play for as many points as one would expect based on their provision cost. A general rule for finding bad cards is to consider the following when designing a deck:

  1. How does the card fit into my strategy? Will it function as an engine, control, or point-slam?
  2. What is the risk associated with the card?
  3. How easily can the card’s value match its provision cost?
  4. Are there similar cards that play for more value?
  5. What is the chance that the card will brick?

Gwent Slang

Archetypes: A set of cards and leader combinations that execute particular concepts or strategies. Check out our Archetype Guide for analysis. 

Elder Bears: High cost cards that are easily shutdown and therefore play for as much points as an Elder Bear, a relatively poor 6 provision 6 power card.  For example, Stefan Skellen and Vysogota of Corvo

Meta: The most common decks one will face. The meta (or meta decks) refers to the most powerful and popular decks. While powerful and popular are not necessarily equivalent, they are generally related. 

Package: A set of cards within a deck that may complement each other and work independently. For example, Nilfgaard has: Spy, Assimilate, and Aristocrat-Ball packages that can be swapped in and out of decks. Low-unit decks often make use of the Madoc package, which consists of Madoc and 4-5 Bomb cards.

Meme: Meme decks are generally (significantly) weaker than meta-decks and can mean several different things along a spectrum of strength/weakness. Our series on memes gives the full low-down and see the best options in our Bandit Gang Meme Snapshot

Pro: Contextually indicates reaching Pro rank (Rank 0), or Professional, referring to players who regularly fit for spots and compete in official tournaments. 

Shortforms: Gwent, like any game, has many shortform terms for its cards. Examples include: Blood Eagle = beagle, Alzur’s Double Cross = ADC, Amphibious Assault = AA. 

Smurf: Refers to returning/veteran players with new accounts or old accounts at a low rank who thus play far better than their true rank and have better cards than their peers. It can also refer to when an individual finds a particularly effective deck and climbs the ladder quickly with it. 

Decode789’s First Interview | Welcome To Bandit Gang | Exclusive

Babyjosus: What does it mean to you now you are officially part of BG?

Decode789: First, joining TBG is the best decision I ever made, because now I can show my creativity without any hindrance. Second, I have known most of the members since TBG was created so they are family. Third, It makes me happy to be part of a great team who knows when to goof around and when to be serious. Love y’all.

BJ: What made you join team BG?

D: Earlier when TBG was founded by BanditPig, I decided then and there to be part of it. The reason I wasn’t able to join earlier was due to IRL reasons. I decided to join because I wanted to showcase creative decks and do some guide on a specific faction.

BJ: What can people expect from you now you are on BG?

D: People can expect off-meta decks, articles, and videos either about certain characters in Gwent or a decklist. I can also do a little bit of logo designs if needed.

BJ: How well suited do you think you are to the life of an (assistant) video editor for BG? 

D: Before I was all into games, I made music back in the day. This eventually led me to video editing my musical creations and posting them on YT back in 2009-2010. I love to be creative. All I need to do now is brush up my skills again and let my creativity flow through. So in conclusion, I feel that I am very well suited to be the assistant video editor for BG. In fact, it’s an honor.

BJ: What message would you give to the supporters of BG?

D: Thank you everyone for the love and support you have given! You are the reason we are encouraged to do more!

You can find out more about Decode789 here.

Bandit Gang’s Top 5 Cards of Price of Power Expansion: Once Upon a Pyre

This article has been written by Babyjosus in collaboration with Bomblin.

After the latest expansion, Price of Power (PoP), got announced, we know that you all were eager to find out what we think about it. And so, we have decided to make a Top 5 cards of the PoP: Once Upon a Pyre expansion. All members had the chance to put in their votes based on card art and/or ability. In the end 18 members voted, including 12 from Content Team and 6 from the Competitive Team (Pro Team & Academy Team). We ended up with the following 5 cards, from least voted card to the most voted card. Side Note: 5 cards of the expansion pack didn’t got any votes at all.

So pay attention now, you might just learn something!

#5 Gerhart of Aelle

The main reason why this card is in the Top 5 is because Content Team member Mercernn got to reveal this card. And the second reason must be of course that its a legendary card that supports the Mage archetype that has been neglected for a very long time by Jason Slama and co!

Most of the votes came from the Content Team, hence the pink color.

#4 Fulmar

Fulmar, Hjalmar, whatever its name is, it got included in our Top 5 because just like Gerhart of Aelle, this card supports a forgotten archetype in Gwent, which is the druid archetype. Fulmar is a great card to use alongside Gedyneith.

Most of the votes came from the Competitive Team, hence the grey color.

#3 Megascope

Megascope gets the third spot in our Top 5, mainly because it has great potential with Idarran, paired with a high value bronze like  Cintrian Royal Guard. A more meme approach is to play it on a Crow Messenger.

All the votes came from the Content Team, hence the pink color.

# 2 Francesca Findabair

The ability and card art from Francesca Findabair is a blast from the past. It allows you to play specials twice, and because it’s not faction restricted, you can play Shupe twice. Nuff said.

Most of the votes came from the Content Team, hence the pink color.

#1 Blightmaker

Blightmaker is flexible because it can be played on a Mage or a special card, but it will be at its most powerful paired with the Mage Assassin.

Pretty much everyone that voted voted for this card. Since the card will see a lot of play in the meta, we decided to give it the grey competitive color.

And that’s it for Team Bandit Gang’s top 5 cards of the Price of Power: Once Upon a Pyre expansion. We hope everyone will have tons of fun in the upcoming weeks with these cards while we wait for the next installment in a couple of months. Let us know what your top 5 cards are in the comment section down below.

Best of luck,

Bomblin & BJ

Deck Guide: Proper Espionage


It’s time to let you in on a secret. Nilfgaard’s spies are actually good. Forget Masquerade Ball, this list can do everything that the old list can but has more provisions to spare. The Devotion criterion in this list is not to be underestimated. I reached Pro Rank with this list without a problem. The combos are magnificent and sometimes even a little dirty. But that is to be expected of the Nilfgaard faction.

Main Strategy

Unlike other spy decks, this list does not rely on multiple Impera Enforcers to carry you through a round with engine power and removal. Instead, this list relies more on gold interactions. This means that your bronze cards serve both as immense threats and removal bait. It’s okay to lose a few of your engines because you have Seditious Aristocrat as a well-deserved finisher. Most importantly, your leader is a tool to set up important Amnesty targets and/or Coup de Grace targets. The game plan does not differ much between playing on Blue or Red Coin (going first or second). Here is a per-round overview of the general strategy:

–        Round 1: in this round, you want to set up some of your engines and prevent your opponent from taking control of the round. You set the pace. Play slowly and conservatively but also try to match the tempo of your opponent. Deny carryover attempts from your opponent with for Amnesty. It is perfectly fine to commit Emhyr, Braathens, Vincent, or even Joachim with Coup as long as you get good cards in return. On Red Coin, if you see your opponent commit a lot of good cards in the first round, it is not a bad idea to pass instead.

–        Round 2: No matter if you won or lost the first round, your goal for round 2 is to set up your combos for round 3. This means playing Joachim and Coup if you haven’t already, and playing Gorthur Gvaed to leave the Order for the next round. Vilgefortz is there to put your opponent in his/her place if they decide to be greedy. Perhaps you get a good card out of his/her deck in the process. Sometimes your combos are already too strong and you win 2-0.

–        Round 3: If everything is set up right, you can put Joachim on top of your opponent’s deck with Gorthur Gvaed. You can then play Cantarella to get Joachim back and use Coup de Grace for another one. If you just drew the Joachim, you can try to kill it first or put Roderick or one of his good gold cards on top instead. If you have last say, it is worth keeping Vilgefortz for your opponent’s tall finishers. Usurper‘s final transformation is especially good in round 3 because of the many agents you play in this deck. Roderick is there for you if you do not draw all the golds you want. These finishing cards are in most cases enough to flat-out win you the game.

The Deck


The goal of your mulligans is to find all your golds. You obviously want to mulligan one of your Hunting Pack. Two bronze engines per round is optimal. You want to mulligan any excess engines, especially because these bronzes are the best target for Joachim. Amnesty is best used early game, so you might consider mulliganing them away in round 3. The bronze spies are also mulligan options. Reasons to keep them in hand are to protect your engines, or if you plan to play Usurper and/or Emhyr in the same round.


  • Use your Stratagem or a leader charge to put an enemy unit to 3 power and steal them with Amnesty. If it has veil, it will now serve as one of your engines.
  • Similarly, you can use Coup de Grace to spawn your own copy of an engine.
  • Gorthur Gvaed‘s order ability can set up any good card for Cantarella to play. Joachim might not always be the best option.
  • Use Gorthur Gvaed‘s order ability to put a spy on top of your deck as a brick or as a 1-strength body that gets summoned when you destroy an enemy with Vilgefortz.
  • Similarly, you can use the alchemist to put a bronze spy from your deck on top of his deck and, in return, you might get one of his good cards in return.
  • Use the alchemist to look at the top of your deck to see what Joachim will play next.
  • Use Emhyr right after you play alchemist to draw the card you stole. If it is good, you can keep it, or you can put it on the bottom of your deck and you never see it again.
  • When you use Coup de Grace on Joachim, you leave another 1-power spying unit for Emhyr to seize.
  • Emhyr and Fergus can give you alternative Coup de Grace and Vincent targets.
  • Emhyr with Impera Enforcers allows you to steal the engines he plays instead.
  • Emhyr with Seditious Aristocrats can generate points whenever your opponent plays a unit, even after you have passed.
  • Fergus can give spying back to Joachim when your opponent tries to purify it.
  • Fergus is best used in combination with at least one bronze engine.
  • Joachim into a Hunting Pack will automatically fulfill the criteria of having an enemy unit with a status effect.
  • Braathens after Usurper in round 3 will boost Usurper at least twice.
  • You can use the one charge on Zeal from an Impera Enforcer to damage a 4-power engine into Amnesty territory.

Matchups Specific Strategies

  • Skellige bronzes, Madoc, Flying Redanian, Cerys, Keidweni Revenants, Blue Stripes Commandos, Dwarven Berserkers, Elven Deadeyes and Bruxa are all targets that deserve to be seized.
  • Vincent against Crystal skull can win you round 1 on even cards.
  • Vincent against Carapace has easy removal targets. It is even profitable to wait for the right moment.
  • Leader tokens and Defenders are also no match for Vincent.
  • Mage Infiltrator is good against Endrega Larva, Azar Javed’s Scarabs, Elven Deadeyes, and Draug. You might want to take this option from Braathens.
  • Emissaries can deny bloodthirst.
  • Cantarella is a direct counter to Yennefer: Invocation.
  • Against no-unit   strategies, you can play your own enemies using your spies. Search for cards that play for points on your side of the board.


Since this is a Devotion list, it does not have many replacement options. However, you can consider replacing Vilgefortz with Yennefer’s Invocation if that card better suits your playstyle.

Closing Remarks

This deck is a lot of fun and I would recommend it to anyone who is trying to compete with Nilfgaard. It has a lot of great matchups and is equipped to handle the meta with grace. That said, it has some difficulties playing against Blaze of Glory lists with Eist or Pirate’s Cove, which are the best decks at the moment. Therefore, I would place this deck on B-tier even though its strength matches that of A-tier lists.

Most of the time, the game will play out according to the plan. but it depends on your match-ups. Sometimes, you end up in a rather unfair situation where you have stolen all of your opponent’s good cards and have more engines than they can possibly contend with. That’s the dream.  On the other hand, you could “low-roll” with Joachim and spend too many provisions in round 1, leaving you with a lot of bad cards for the rest of the game. Or your sequencing was bad, leaving you just short in points. These moments are rare, but user discretion is advised.

TheOneChristo – What’s In My Deckbuilder?

This is ”Whats In My Deckbuilder?”, a series by Babyjosus where he asks Bandit Gang members and other people from the community to share their insights about what kind of decks they have in their deckbuilder. The decks in one’s deckbuilder often says a lot about the person. This person could be a deckbuilder at heart and plays with his/her own homebrews and even personalizes them by giving them names. But of course you also have the person that looks up a meta snapshot and starts netdecking the best decks from it and might not even bother to give them unique names. Oh well, there is only one way to find out and that is by exposing them through this series!

TheOneChristo's Deck Picks

There are definitely some leftovers from my tryhard Season of the Bear. Then there’s a bunch of other stuff that I never delete. It might be time for the great deckbuilder purge of 2021. Until then, here’s what’s in my deckbuilder.

I was looking for some NR that wasn’t Witchers and Mr Ecko sent me this one to play on stream. I got sidetracked by Kaedweni Revevants and never actually played it. I’ll probably get to it at some point.

Somebody in chat sent me this one as well, CatDadAnthony I think? I’m pretty sure he lifted it from Trynet. It was fun to play, but I get confused easily playing Revs, so it didn’t do my MMR much good. 

DevilDriven Seasonal
DD’s stuff is my go-to for seasonal. It’s pretty much the first thing that ends up in my deck builder every season. Hats off to you sir for the top notch content.

Bushr’s Overwhelming Hunger
I was looking for old school OH and somebody sent me Bush’s list. It wasn’t exactly what I was going for. That night on stream I was too lazy to build my own deck, so I ended up playing Revs instead and this list sits unused in my deckbuilder (starting to see a trend?).

Decode’s Elves
I love wholesome Elf lists. I always have. They used to be my go to archetype when a new patch came out. I’ve been toying around with Traps – which I hate, so it was refreshing to come back to good old Elf Swarm. Fun and a solid deck. 

Randy’s NG
A viewer redemption, having spent his hard-earned tea bags to have me play his deck. It’s inspired by an older NG, lock-heavy list. Doesn’t quite match up well to the current 4x Joachim lists that are floating around.

Mercernn’s Stockpile Another viewer redemption. Mercernn is an expert deck builder. That being said, Stockpile is bad. Sorry Merc.

BG’s Kelly
I snagged this out of the Bandit Gang discord, I can’t remember who posted it. I’ve been having a tough time with Monsters lately, so I was trying out a variety of different things. 

Piggy’s Pockets
New Lined Pockets lists have been forgoing the Sir. I wanted to try a version with Skewertooth. I didn’t notice a huge difference between the two versions.

Presidente’ Guerilla Tactics
Another viewer redemption. It’s an all-neutral deck with GT. Lots of fun. Lots of Bandits! It actually won us a couple of games… casual. 

Psykoki Made Me Do It
It was a viewer redemption. I had no choice. I refuse to play Lippy Gudmund and never used that card before. I used it once. Won the game. Never plan on touching it again. Not sure why I haven’t deleted it yet.

Lined Pockets V3
V1 & V2 are gone, V3 is post Tunnel Drill nerf (I barely want to call it that – post drill tweak?)

Why Viy?
As in “Christo, why have you stooped so low?” I’ve been trying a bunch of Monster things and I’m not loving any of the options, this one included. 

Eist list with Mork in it. Exciting, I know.

NR Witchers
Pretty standard stuff, they actually served me quite well a few seasons ago.

“Chinese Metabreaker”
The famous 4x Joachim list that the Council posted as the Chinese Metabreaker. If it was that good, I had to try it, right? Except I didn’t. It still sits unloved in my deckbuilder. I ended up playing Cloggers for NG MMR.

Stupid Bugs
Can you tell that I don’t really like any Monster options this season? This one included. I know it’s a strong list, I just cannot for the life of me figure out how to play it. 

Bladerunner’s Fault
Another viewer list – Bladerunner sent me this guy when I said I wanted to play some Enslave.

Kelly Kelly Bo Belly
Another Kelly list I tried (and failed with). 

ABC Always Be Clogging 

Named after that famous scene from Glengarry Glenn Ross (or the SNL Skit Always be Cobbling), this was a mix of what enerGiiX and iancm were playing last season and was a real superstar for me, punching above 2500. Yes, I’m sorry, but not that sorry for playing clog.

Eist to See You
Ya I was going on a movie kick apparently, this one from Batman & Robin’s Mr Freeze (or Rainier Wolfcastle from the Simpson). First kick at the can for Eist last season. There’s even a deck guide floating around somewhere.

Emhyr’s Sneaky Spices
First go at it with Emhyr. I actually had a lot of fun with this deck. It hasn’t aged all that well, but I don’t have the heart to delete it.  

Triple Commandos
There is no more iconic a combination than BabyJosus & Triple….well Triple anything, really, but Triple Commandos is near and dear to my heart, so when BJ updated his list with the Foltest buff, I had to give it a go.

Who Is TheOneChristo?

TheOneChristo aka Christo is known as the owner of Christo’s Cafe serving all kinds of specialties. He started out as a streamer and joined Bandit Gang as one, but has since then improved his menu by adding Host and Caster to the it. He has been hosting and casting events for Bandit Gang and 983 Media since that and eventually got the opportunity to cast the Top 64 Qualifiers for CDPR alongside WatchFlake.

If you missed the tenth edition of ”What’s In My Deckbuilder?” then you can check that out here. Also please consider checking out our article section where you can find plenty of articles. From member interviews to deck guides and more!

LawAndOtter’s First Interview | Welcome To Bandit Gang | Exclusive

Babyjosus: What does it mean to you now you are officially part of BG?

LawAndOtter: It’s really great to join a team of folks who care about Gwent and about each other. The first meeting I was on was like joining a group that’s been hanging out at the bar together for years, in the best possible way.

BJ: What made you join team BG?

LAO: There was a call on Reddit for contributors, and I answered. I love the Gwent community, but I’ve been a bit of a lurker for a while now. I tend to be pretty quiet in person, and that carries over to online. I’m excited to be giving back to the Gwent community.

BJ: What can people expect from you now you are on BG?

LAO: Lots of articles, especially beginner’s guides and strategy deep dives. I’ve played CCGs all my life (MTG player back in the 90’s when things were still simple). Gwent is by far my favorite digital CCG, and it’s all because the strategy involved is so rich. I love thinking and talking about strategy in Gwent, and I’m thrilled to move forward those discussions in my role as a writer.

BJ: How well suited do you think you are to the life of an article writer for BG?

LAO: I love writing, and I love Gwent, so it’s a good fit. Whenever I pick up a new deck (meta or meme), I always think about how I would write a deck guide. That improves my play and makes me think about the deck better. My mind’s always turning things over in Gwent, so now I just have to start typing.

BJ: What message would you give to the supporters of BG?

LAO: Thank you for your support of Bandit Gang! I would say that whatever you want to see from your Gwent content creators, don’t hesitate to speak up! We’re all passionate about the game, and if there’s something you’d like to see more of, someone on the team would love to make it a reality.

You can find out more about LawAndOtter here.

Akaean’s First Interview | Welcome To Bandit Gang | Exclusive

Babyjosus: What does it mean to you now that you are officially part of BG?

Akaean: I am very excited about being a part of Bandit Gang because I can continue my borderline incoherent ramblings about Gwent and, I hope, other people will read them and even occasionally find them helpful. Bandit Gang is a better outlet for my obsessive energy than Reddit. As Bandit Gang grows, it will continue to be an excellent resource for people who want to learn about Gwent, and I am excited to be a part of that.

The other major thing is that it is exciting to be a part of a community that is as passionate about Gwent as I am. I remember when I made pro-rank for the first time, I was pretty stoked about it, but who could I share that accomplishment with?  My 65-year-old mother?  My buddy, who played through the tutorial and was done with it?   It just feels good to be a part of a community that shares the same passions and obsessions, and I’m looking forwards to becoming a contributing member.  

BJ: What made you join BG?

A: Honestly, a recruitment topic on the Gwent Subreddit is what pushed me to reach out to Bandit Gang. I am a pretty active poster there, and I was already frequently posting in the newcomer’s thread to help new players.  When I learned that Team Bandit Gang was looking for a content creator, I knew that I wanted to do this. I already liked spilling unnecessary amounts of ink about Gwent, and I brought with me some prior experience guest writing articles about other mobile games, such as Pokemon Masters.  In this case, I have the opportunity to pontificate endlessly about Gwent, and Bandit Gang gets to host my ramblings. All that said, that dope pink suit stirred something deep within my psyche, and it does a disservice to BabyJosus to not give credit where credit is due.  

BJ: What can people expect from you now you are on BG?

A: I think it is safe to say that people can expect me to write content about Gwent. My favorite topics generally involve theorising about strategy and giving advice to anyone willing to listen to me.  The focus of my articles will be on various decks, strategies, and guides aimed at helping new players learn some of the concepts of the game. In addition to writing, I am not opposed to contributing content in other ways as well.  Streaming, Podcasts, whatever projects Bandit Gang is working on – I am more than happy to pitch in and learn something new. 

BJ: How well suited do you think you are to the life of an article writer for BG?

A: I’m probably no better suited than anyone else, to be perfectly honest.  As a matter of philosophy, I don’t think anybody can be better suited to do anything than anybody else.  What makes the difference is the will and desire to be a part of something.  In that sense, my passion for analytical writing and Gwent itself will be exceptional assets for our journey ahead.  As Aelirenn would say, “WE SHALL DRIVE THE APE MEN INTO THE SEA!”

BJ: What message would you give to the supporters of BG?

A: Look at how far I’ve come, supporters of BG!  Look at me!  With hard work, dedication, and drive, you too can spend long hours producing quality content for free on the internet! In all seriousness, I think the best message I can give to supporters of Bandit Gang and Gwent is to remember that we all play this game, ostensibly, for fun, and that is something we should never forget. 

You can find out more about akaean here.