How to play around the Coin?

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In this article, we are going to talk about how to play around the Coin in Gwent, especially so that new players can understand it better and also what is the difference between them. Let’s start!

What is the “Coin Assignment”?

Among the strategies that must be taken into account in Gwent, we have the coin assignment. At the start of every game, a coin is tossed and determines in which order players will start playing. If you start first your coin will be blue, while if you start second your coin will be red.

What is the difference between having “Blue Coin” or “Red Coin”?

At first glance it seems that the coin only defines whether you start first of second in the game, but we are going to tell you more about the differences that exist and how they influence the game.

Blue Coin

When you begin with Blue Coin you start with a disadvantage and that is why to compensate for this disadvantage you are given a “Stratagem” and an “Extra Mulligan” (in total you have 3 mulligans).

Red Coin

You usually have an advantage with Red Coin by the simple fact of being second in the game, that is why you do NOT get a “Stratagem” and you only have a total of 2 mulligans.

Why Blue Coin is unfavorable?

The player who starts with Blue Coin has 3 possibilities of how round 1 can finish for him:

  • You win round 1 and decide to play round 2 with a card down, taking the risk that the push goes wrong and you lose a card for round 3, although sometimes it goes well and with this push you don’t lose the card. On the contrary, you can perform a “Drypass” (pass without playing any card) and play round 3 ensuring the “Last Say” (play the last card in the game).
  • You lose round 1, but a card up, this happens when you pass round 1 on purpose and your opponent must play one more card to win that round. For example because you don’t want to spend your gold cards or your opponent is playing too many golds and you think that you can win the next rounds with better deck quality.
  • You lose the round “On Even”, this happens when you lose the round with the same cards as your opponent, because your opponent didn’t give you the possibility to pass with card advantage. When this situation happens we call it “Coin Abuse” and this is the main thing because playing with Blue Coin is a disadvantage (because your opponent can beat you “On Even”).

What to do if I am losing “On Even”?

If you start with Blue Coin and you see that your opponent has more points than you in every turn he’s playing that means that you are losing “On Even”, if you pass you will lose the round in equal cards. If you find yourself in this situation you have some options:

  • Play some strong gold cards so that you will get many points in a single turn and so the opponent don’t have reach in one turn to get over you and you can pass. You can also use your leader ability if you are very desperate, but this is not recommended.
  • Assume that you will lose the round “On Even”. In this case you play until you have 5 cards or more left, so that when you play round 2 you have the option to take card back. Your opponent is forced to play the round if he wants to keep card advantage because if he “Drypasses” you both go to a round 3 with equal cards, you only lose the “Last Say”.
  • If you eventually are beaten a card down and go round 3 with card disadvantage don’t give up. Sometimes you can still win the game!

There is one last possibility, which is much more difficult to achieve but not impossible, and that is to “flip the coin”, this means that the player who starts with Blue Coin can change his position in the game and get the opponent to be the one who loses “On Even”.

How to manage to flip the coin?

To achieve this you must get in round 1 a card advantage over your opponent and you must use some specific cards to this, as we said before it is difficult to achieve, but not impossible!. Take note because we will give you two examples of how to get it:

  • Ciri: Dash. The ability of this card is “After 4 allied turns, on turn end, draw a card”. It doesn’t matter which card you draw, the important thing is that you have managed to “flip the coin” and it gives you many options to win “On Even” since you also have the advantage of having the “Stratagem”. You usually combine Ciri with the stratagem Crystal Skull since it gives veil to the unit and it cannot be blocked, at the same time you can use a defender to protect Ciri as much as you can.

  • Stregobor – Matta Hu’uri Combo. To achieve this combo you need to have access to these two cards in round 1. You start playing Stregobor and in the next turn you play Matta Hu’uri, with this you will get card advantage and if you play it with 8 cards in hand you also make the opponent “Burn” a card sending it directly to the graveyard because his hand is full at the moment of the second draw. This combo is more difficult to perform because you need both cards in hand and Stregobor to survive one turn. Also if in round 3 you don’t have “Last Say” you can use this combo to get the “Last Say” yourself.

So far we have discussed Blue Coin and virtually every situation and dangers involved in playing with it.

But what are the dangers of playing with Red Coin?

  • Losing round 1 “On Even” can only happen when your opponent has managed to “flip the coin” with Ciri: Dash or the Stregobor – Matta Hu’uri Combo.
  • You lose round 1 and in round 2 your opponent decides to press (in Gwent is used the term “Bleed”) and suddenly makes you what we call a “tempo pass” once you pass the 5-card threshold. This happens when you have to win round 2 and you are forced to play 2 cards to win, forcing you to go a card down in round 3.

Conclusion

As we can see, coin is very important and can define the outcoming of the match, losing “On Even” is a situation that you want to avoid but doesn’t mean that the game is lost, you just have to manage your cards properly.

To conclude, there are decks that benefit from on coin or another, let’s take a look at some examples.

Which decks benefit depending on the coin?

Blue Coin

  • Decks with engines and cards with good synergies between them benefits of Blue Coin because you can set your combos before the opponent and you have the stratagem to protect those engines.
  • “Combo heavy” decks, so called because they are more likely to not have all the pieces of the combo in hand and thanks to the stratagem the can search for what they need to complete their combo.

Red Coin

  • Control decks usually are very strong and annoying for the opponent, but they suffer a lot in blue because they don’t have many pro-active plays, while in red they can abuse the opponent so easily.
  • Decks with slow but strong engines, because their combos can be interrupted, benefits in going red because they don’t care if their engines are killed and can pass at 7 cards threshold.

We hope that with this guide you have understood the importance of the coin in Gwent, it is undoubtedly one of the most complex concepts in the game and can be something complicated for new players, but if you manage to master it, you will notice the difference in your games and you will improve as a player.

See you in the next article!

Original author: Flfuentealba
Translation: Burns