Patience is a Virtue! Guide

Greetings fellow Gwenches and Gwentlemen.
My name is Easha Dustfeather, member of the Lodge of Sorceresses and co-author of the Glittering Girly Gwent Gaming blog. While I have plenty of experience from writing newbie guides, this time we will look into a topic for everyone: A guide on the recently introduced seasonal mode Patience is a Virtue!

Enslave 7 list is provided by Team Nova, rest of the text is written by Easha Dustfeather

The rules

“At the start of your turn, transform all cards in your hand into random ones that cost 1 provision more.”

 ‘Random’ is meant literally here. It can be any card of any faction and is not limited to the faction of your leader ability. The first transformation will happen before you play your first card which means you will never play a card you originally put into your deck in the deck builder. However, tutoring cards from your deck is still possible as only the cards on your hand are affected by the seasonal rule.

The increasing cost of your cards in hand throughout the round usually means an increase in their quality as well. Because of this it is not necessary to conserve your high provision gold cards for later rounds as every card can be a high provision one if you play it late enough.

Writing of high provision gold cards: The most expensive card in the game right now is Nilfgaard’s Scenario Masquerade Ball at 15 provisions. All cards will end up as this card at some point if the round is long enough. Should you have Masquerade Ball in hand, it will transform back into a 4 provision card and the cycle starts again, even though this is not mentioned in the rules.

Deck building

The seasonal rules limit the influence of your starting deck by overthrowing most of the decisions you made in the deck builder with the constant transformation of cards. This does not mean there is nothing you can do. The choice of your leader ability is particularly important:

In general the provisions gained by your leader ability are way less relevant in this seasonal mode, as the whole provision limit is already circumvented by the ruleset itself.

Invigorate is an especially awful choice, as the entire boost will be lost after the first transformation. All Syndicate abilities are not recommended either, as the Coin mechanic becomes liability in this game mode. Every deck of this faction needs a delicate balance between Coin generators and spenders which is downright impossible with the random transformation.

Leader abilities with a passive part are usually ill advised as well. Using Battle Trance as example: you only get the spawned copy of Mardroeme for sure, but you cannot capitalise on the added benefit of playing Alchemy cards. All those Alchemy cards you added to your deck earlier will be transformed when you play the match.

Leader abilities that interact with faction specific cards can be difficult to use as well. While having a Skellige unit in your deck for Blaze of Glory is entirely possible (the cards in your deck do not transform after all), having three Northern Realms Order units for Inspired Zeal over the course of a match is highly unlikely.

Instead, you are looking for leader abilities which do not rely on synergies with the cards on your hand and present plenty of points on their own and/or offer some additional utility. Force of Nature, Shield Wall and Guerilla Tactics belong to this category.

My recommendation would be Enslave while running 12 Tactic cards: Usually you weaken your deck by including so many Tactic cards, but in this game mode this weakness is negated entirely by the seasonal rules as all of them will transform into different, potentially more useful cards anyway. Just be careful as you might end up facing two Defenders above 6 power and brick your leader ability. Even we can show a 7 enslave list as example one.

Now we want to give a guide with respect to the order of playing our cards in each of the rounds, tips for certain confrontations, and based on this, know if we should leave a round quickly or press until the end.

Roach & Knickers

Both are basically free points, all you need to do is keep them in your deck. If you use leader abilities that can manipulate your hand like Pincer Maneuver and Tactical Decision, they can be used to shuffle both of them from your hand back into your deck should you happen to get them from transformations.

Bronze interactions
Avoid cards that target bronze cards in a players hand or on the board like Queen Adalia or Duchess’s Informant, as actually playing a bronze card instead of waiting for it to transform into a more powerful gold card will not happen very often and you risk bricking those cards.

Hand buff

Do not even bother. Every hand buff will be lost when the card transforms. Should you use Pincer Maneuver make sure you play the boosted card you just drew from your deck at once so you do not waste the extra points. Allgod’s effect is pointless as well unless you use it on cards like Roach or Knickers which you do not play from your hand.

Singleton decks

This strategy is worth a consideration so you can play Shupe’s Day Off and Radeyah should you get them. The weakness of those decks – running many different bronze cards instead of more synergistic ones – does not exist in this seasonal mode after all.

Provision distribution

I highly recommend you do not run a heavily polarised deck. If you have plenty of high provision cost cards and need to run many low provision cards to fit them into your deck, you are artificially limiting yourself as you cannot abuse the flexibility granted by the rule set of this seasonal mode. More on that below.

Strategy

You want many differently-costed cards in your deck and hand so you can maintain a constant output of high provision gold cards. Similar to the concept of Thrive, try to play cards with decreasing provision cost starting with expensive cards while you wait for your low provision cards to ‘grow’ into better ones.
Try to keep at least one of your highest provision cards in your deck in case you get a tutor so you can make use of impactful gold cards you chose instead of being at the mercy of coincidence. Oneiromancy is not too unlikely to get at 13 provisions after all.

Do not fall into the trap of believing high provisions always mean a better card. Especially in the very high provision regions of 14/15 you usually get Scenarios of different factions which only give you the value of their first chapter due to a lack of synergies in most of the cases. Do not overestimate their value. Even if you can get lucky and use a tutor to pull a unit from your deck to advance to their next chapter, this is more of an exception than a rule. Should you play a Nilfgaard deck it is highly recommend to run at least some Aristocrats which you might be able to pull from your deck. Unlike all the other factions, Masquerade Ball at 15 provisions is guaranteed so you can hope that the stars align and trigger several of them with one tutored Aristocrat.

Cards to be mindful of

Tutors

As just mentioned tutors are especially relevant when it comes to advancing Scenarios or accessing cards from your starting deck for a change. Just be careful as you might get specialised tutors from other factions which can end up as nothing but bricks.


Defenders/Resilience
Usually a valid pick, as Purify on demand does not exist. If you force your opponents to target Defenders it can make some of their plays extremely awkward.

 

Assimilate
Just like in plenty of the seasonal modes, you can exploit this mechanic once again. Do try to get cards with this keyword. It is triggered by every card you play as none of them was start of your starting deck.

Cross-faction synergies

Think outside the box and try to get cross faction synergies which are usually impossible to achieve in a regular match.

Echo cards/evolving cards

Because of the seasonal rules both work different than you are used to: You will never play an Echo card a second time from hand as it will get transformed at once when you draw it again.
Because of this transformation evolving cards will always be in their first form as it appears in the deck builder.

At the end of the day the outcome matches in this seasonal mode relies heavily on RNG. So despite all the pointers presented above, RNG will favour either you or your opponent. This mode is meant to embrace the hilarious randomness with every card you play. If that is not your favourite brand, better wait for the next seasonal mode. Otherwise, have fun while it lasts!