Bloody Arla is the first deck that Ruben covers in his new column, META ARCHETYPES 101. In each article, he will be diving into a deck list to explain the basic cards needed to play, the strategy how to play, and more.
How to build Bloody Arla from scratch
The time is right. You have set aside a few hours to deck build. You sit down and look at your cards. You see winning decks posted on Facebook and other websites. You also think you can make those decks better. “Well, you are in luck!” There are tools to assist you with that. The most important thing is to remember that most archetypes have a shell that the deck is based on. In this article I will go over the important cards in the featured deck, why they are in there, and what wiggle room you have to put your own spin on it. Shall we begin?
Bloody Arla – The Shell
4 Artemis bow
2-3 Laevateinn, the Demon Sword
3 Flame kings shout
Card Choices 101
The reasoning behind having certain card combinations in your Bloody Arla deck is that in the world of Aggro, a misplay can be your undoing. Let’s take a look at the cards below to see what you can work with.
Artemis Bow – With Arla being your J/Ruler, not having these bows in your deck will warrant crazy talk from your opponent. This card is so good. It helps stall aggro and makes players think twice about attacking or blocking. It destroys flying J/Resonators. Did you see what I just said? It blows them out of the sky and leaves you feeling warm and fuzzy inside. It destroys pesky Chant:Standby cards like Sign to the Future or Portal of Truth that can wreck your deck. <MUST HAVE>
Laevateinn the Demon Sword – There is nothing better in this world than immediately swinging at your opponent with a flipped J/Ruler with flying that can cruise above your opponent’s resonators. But, that’s not all! This regalia has tons of utility. “What, you want to take my creature?” Nope. I will banish it in response, or “If I could only get that<insert badass red creature> from my deck…. Let me banish Rukh Egg and go searching!” Also, this regalia saves your J/Ruler from dying, it buffs the damage output, and if you have another Laevateinn out, you can discard it from hand to create one Fire will. Holy crap that is utility!!! <MUST HAVE>
Deathscythe – When playing against Bahamut, Sylvia, or any other aggressive ruler, this regalia will shut it down and make it lose Imperishable. That’s very important if you don’t want to have your face pummelled as early as Turn 1. If playing Guinevere, this card can be a discard outlet so you don’t throw any good cards away. You can always remove three cards from your graveyard in the game to bring it back to your hand. Rinse and Repeat. <MUST HAVE>
Perceval – You are running regalia and Knights in this deck. Perceval is the bread and butter in getting these cards from your deck into your hand. This is a great Turn 1 play into a Lancelot if you don’t have it in opening hand. Need another bow? Go digging. Need to protect your J/Ruler? Banish in response. Didn’t expect that burn spell on Lancelot? Banish to prevent damage. Great one drop. <MUST HAVE>
Thunder – This card has so many uses. Need to do that last 500 points of damage? Cast Thunder and watch the opponent weep on their cards. Need to kill that stupid Cthuga that wants to swing at your face? Booyah, it’s dead! Need to do some shenanigans with your Bow to kill off a resonator? “I’ll take ‘Things that deal 500’, Alex.” So good. <MUST HAVE>
Lancelot – This resonator is the most talked about aggro card in the format. This card is not good. It’s fantastic! Your deck is not called Sweet Arla. It is called Bloody Arla for the fact that you will bloody your opponent with an unchecked Lancelot. If he has a bodyguard on the field with Perceval, he is hard to get rid of. Not only that, he can shoot your opponent’s resonator for 700 points of damage if needed. A two drop 600/600 with Swiftness and Firebreathing? Yes. I’ll have another. <YOU BETTER HAVE>
Flame King’s Shout – This is one of the best cards in the game in my opinion. It is a board wipe against low defense resonators that deals 400 damage and, for a bonus, you can put up to a three drop fire resonator on the field. ARE YOU KIDDING ME?! Oh, you have a board that is gearing up to go Alice’s World on me? Not so fast pal! Let me kill your board state and swing in with my best friend, Gareth. It’s such value, just too damn good not to run is this deck. <MUST HAVE>
Gareth, the Dauntless Knight – Take a look at what this card can do. It is a three drop. Ok, not bad. It’s an 800/800. Nice. It has Target Attack. Sweet! It can prevent 700 damage or less to it when it is dealt damage. I’m sorry, what? Combo this card with FKS and you have a recipe for bloody disaster. Love this card. I would rate this card high in your choices for slots in your deck. It is hard to kill and it’s a Knight of the Round Table. The engine named Perceval can help you find this card and keep it alive if needed. <OPTIONAL to MUST HAVE>
This is where your spin comes into play. Do you want some versatility? Do you want pure Aggro? Do you know what your local meta is? Is there a chance you know what your competitive meta is? The key to your remaining cards in your Bloody Arla deck is what path you want to take. Here are some possible choices:
- Rukh Egg
- Gilles de Rais
- Little Dread, the Fake Red Moon
- Blazer, Eater of Dimensions
- Split Heaven and Earth
Guinevere is used to filter through your deck and get rid of dead cards. You need resonators to beat your opponent down. She helps.
Rukh Egg is your go-get it card. You need a Lancelot? Find a way to kill this resonator and search the deck. Need a game swinging play? Go get a Blazer.
Gilles de Rais is a dragon on steroids. This big guy can fly over and wreck face. For every fire stone in play it gets stronger. Not too shabby.
Little Dread, the Fake Red Moon is such a salt-inducing card that is also adorable at the same time. Let’s say you use Awakening to steal a resonator and attack with it. Wait, is that a Laevateinn on my board? Not only will I smack you with your own resonator but I will not give it back. I will use my good ole regalia to banish it. Oh, why so salty? Muahaha.
Blazer, Eater of Dimensions is a resonator that will be missed when it rotates. This guy is hard to kill and hard to remove from the threat zone. This zone is not in the CR, but your opponent will know what it means after it keeps coming back to smack them in the face. The best way your opponent can deal with this card is to have chump blockers for days or hope you don’t have it. Good luck with that.
Gawain– This Knight of the Round Table buffs up your Knights. That includes the likes of Lancelot, Perceval, and your good friend Gareth. Not only that, but, to put icing on the cake, it can rest a recovered resonator when it attacks or blocks. See the theme here? These Knights love hanging out and making the game miserable for your opponent.
Cthugha– You want more Aggro, you say? Well, this guy will do it for you. You can use Incarnation to banish a Rukh Egg to get another Cthugha, Lancelot, OTK like Gilles or Blazer, or another egg. It has swiftness and it’s a 500/500. Just enough to finish the opponent off. I lovingly call this guy Chug.
Split Heaven and Earth– Oh let me tell you a story about how a greedy stone base lost me Top 8 in a Qualifier tournament! Basically, if your opponent is wielding numerous non-basic stones,this card punishes them for it. Dealing 300 damage to a player for each of those stones is like swinging with Lancelot multiple times with no response.
There are many ways to build a good Bloody Arla deck. People may tell you that netdecking is not the way to go. You must do it all on your own, they say. True deck builders build from scratch, they say. That’s fine if you have tons of time to test match-ups, research the meta, and solve the format. Some of us work full time jobs and are full time parents. So be creative. Think outside the box. You never know, you just might create the next meta deck. Use the tools above to help create your own niche in the tournament scene. Put your own spin to it. Most importantly, just have fun!
What are your thoughts on the shell of the deck? What have you tried or seen work in playing?
Please leave any comments, questions, or suggest anything that you might have done differently in our comments section. As always, thanks for reading and see you at the tables!
META ARCHETYPES 101 is an exclusive column at FoWHub.com written by Ruben Sanchez. In each installment, Ruben will dissect and discuss the top meta deck types, budget deck builds and random, fun deck lists for Force of Will.
Ruben Sanchez has been playing Force of Will since early 2015. He comes from a Magic: The Gathering background of over 20 years. He plays FoW competitively any chance he gets. He has a top 10 finish in the State Championships in his home state of Virginia. His true passion is teaching new players the game. His main goal is to get FoW cards in every man, woman, and child’s hands. He also is a vocal leader in the community for players and LGS. He aspires to be a Judge one day and is tirelessly learning the rules so he can help others. Ruben can be heard on the The Imperishable Podcast alongside George and Justin.