Hello and welcome to the Weekly Stream Recap with Weissenberg! In this segment your humble servant and the loyal subject to the Nilfgaardian Emperor provides a written testimony of his adventures in the realm of Gwent. Each week we will try our luck with a creative and non-competitive deck and each week we will design a set of rules we have to follow throughout the broadcasts.

Purified Guardians of the Holy Shaelmaar
Assimilate Nilfgaard is one the archetypes that I have always found interesting… but never good enough to climb with. But, it always had that one thing that I value above all and that prevented me from ever reaching pro-rank: meme potential. And considering that I still feel quite traumatized by the last season I decided that it was time to release some steam and reignite my interest in Gwent through memes. It was time to play assimilate.

There are quite a few assimilate lists available, but I always need to add a couple of personal and unconventional twists to the deck I’m playing. Jan Calveit has been selected as the leader. It is not the most obvious choice, but also not something unheard of. It allowed me to fish for certain cards when I needed them the most. Portal, Operator, Triss: Telekinesis and Bribery are the staple of nearly every assimilate deck. You need them to get your engines up and running.

Now that I had my core ingredients it was time for that personal twist I was talking about earlier. Yennefer’s Invocation and Tourney Shaelmaar. While the former might be quite situational and matchup dependent, the latter almost always breaks even on its provision cost. It is one of those cards that remain unnoticed and underappreciated while being solid value every single match. As a cherry on top I added Artorius Vigo to thin rather than to create another Duchess’s Informant. While assimilate is strong in a longer round, it usually lacks tempo. Playing Artorius the way he is used in various hyperthin decks somewhat fixes this issue… and occasionally bricks your hand, but it is the risk I’m willing to take.

My bronze package might seem somewhat controversial. I did include the most obvious (and only) assimilate bronzes, that is the Imperial Diviner and the Ducal Guard. But, Duchess’s Informant seems nowhere to be found. Blasphemy! That is not how you play assimilate! Some might even say that I’m deliberately trying to make the deck bad! You see, I figured that I could add another personal twist and include the tactic package. It was risky, I agree, but without any control tools I would always end up being outran by the engine decks that require less setup and start generating points much faster.

In conclusion, the list below is a result of a rather strange crossbreed between the traditional assimilate deck and the much more popular hyperthin list with a couple of personal favorites being the cherry on top, but as always, feel free to swap any cards as you please.

Assimilate naturally prefers longer rounds, so “win the first round whatever the cost” seems like an understandable rule to implement while playing this deck. But, considering how prone to bricking this list seems to be I decided not to design any specific rules for this week’s broadcasts. Otherwise it would look like I’m unnecessarily punishing myself or like I’m trying to lose on purpose.

Match #1: Dettlaff Vampires
Vampires and bleeding are a rather unorthodox engine deck. It is probably the first popular list that (at least partially) relies on damage over time. But, similarly to other engine decks it lacks control. Meaning, both of us would mostly do our own thing playing as if the opposite side of the board did not exist. We were in for a round of solitaire.

We opened with Portal to get both of our Ducal Guards on the board. It allowed us to thin and prevented potential bricks in rounds two and three. As a matter of fact it was nothing short of a small miracle that our hand was free of any dead cards. After our opponent set up their own engines we got down to business. Both our decks are not necessarily reactive, so it was a showdown of who can generate more points with silly plays. After a couple of lucky create plays we managed to get 20 points ahead and that discouraged our opponent from playing further. I still do not exactly know how that happened, but it did. RNGesus giveth, RNGesus taketh away, I guess?

In round two we did what all assimilate players do. We drypassed. If we ever wanted to stand a chance at winning against a solid tier 2 deck, we needed the longest round 3 possible.

Our opponent used their opening play in round 3 to flex with a tempo Ozzrel play. In the meantime we slowly started to establish a favorable state of the board with as many assimilate-based engines as possible. After that both parties got to their silly business once again. Create versus bleeding with nearly no interaction between the opponents. For all spectators it must have looked like a never ending exchange of brainless plays. After all both assimilate and vampires are not the most ambitious or demanding of decks. In the end, it all came down to the last plays. Our opponent finished with Old Speartip after which we were in a desperate need of quite a few points. I did the math and I knew we lost. There was no way. Not even the Holy Shaelmaar could win us this game. But it did, in my calculations I forgot about thrive that we so luckily created and that triggered once our big boy hit the board.

Match #2: Jan Calveit Assimilate
These days when you see Jan Calveit you think hyperthin. It had to be hyperthin. Nobody plays assimilate on the ladder. There is no chance…

After my opponent made their opening play, it was clear. It was not hyperthin, but assimilate. My first thought was… are we being netdecked? Did somebody, possibly with a clouded mind, somehow think our deck is worthy of netdecking? For a few turns we tried to disguise ourselves as a hyperthin list. A few tactics, Artorius Vigo thinning with Impera Brigade. But then our opponent played Bribery and created the Operator. I knew, that they knew. We both started creating. RNG versus RNG. At some point our opponent messed up their math and had to go two cards down to take the round. We still had our Portal and our own Operator, so I was convinced we were in a good position to win this game.

In round two our opponent did what all assimilate players do. They drypassed. We decided to play Cantarella and hopefully steal one of their crucial cards. But, it was Portal. We pulled our opponent’s Portal that bricked our own Portal. Oh, the joy of playing assimilate…

Round 3. We mulliganed the bricked Portal, but ended up having Xarthisius that had a high chance of revealing it, which essentially made him a high risk card. A few turns later we made a crucial mistake. We played Imperial Diplomacy with Jan Calveit and accidentally bricked Menno Coehoorn. Our hand had so many bricks we could build a structure that would rival the Malbork Castle*. Four cards in our hand, most of them are either bricked, or show a high potential of bricking. How do we even win this? And that is when another miracle happened. Our opponent forfeited. They thought our hand is strong, while it clearly was not.

*Malbork Castle is the largest brick castle in the world.

Thanks for reading!
That’s it does it for this episode of the Weekly Stream Recap! Thanks for joining us today, I hope you enjoyed the read. You can catch us live at: www.twitch.tv/weissenberg

See you next week!

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