Secret HQ

art (c) Mike Trap


Alternate Power

The basic method of gaining power is by playing sites and generating at the start of your turn.  But, there is also a plethora of other cards that can also gain you power, from single-use events to cards that can potentially give you more power every turn.  Stocking the right amount of these alternate power generation cards is a key to a successful deck. 

There are two situations to consider when it comes to alternate power -- when you are even or ahead of the pack, and when you are whipping boy.  When you're leading (or at least aren't far behind), you want to solidify that position.  Having more sites on the board (and especially non-Feng Shui sites) will help you keep rolling towards victory, but a few extra points of power almost never hurt, and there are quite a few of these. 

When you have taken a beating, and are way behind the leaders, you will almost always need a power burst to get back into the game.  There aren't as many cards cards for making a comeback as there are for generally gaining power, but they are quite powerful.  

When considering cards that gain you power, you need to consider the nature of your deck.  Is it  a deck that can run on very low power (say 1-2) mid-game, or is it loaded with expensive cards that are power hungry?  The former is going to need less alternate power generation cards than the latter. Be wary of is overloading your deck with power generation, and skimping on the cards that are going to win the game for you.  Dueling decks and multiplayer decks will also have different needs, and some cards are more suited for one format or the other.

Below I have four general categories for cards that provide extra power generation.  The top tier cards are those that I think are generally better -- they will get you more power more often, but many of the second tier cards can also be useful in the right situations and shouldn't be overlooked.  Also, some cards could fit into multiple categories, but I left them in what I consider to be their main function.

Comeback Power
These are the cards that are going to give you that big power burst to get you back in the game.  You are going to want a few cards from this category in almost every deck.  Almost all of the second tier cards are outstanding in this category -- they only reason they are second tier is that they are more situational or don't give you a big boost of power all at once.  Unfortunately, a lot of these cards wont do you much good if you are ahead, so balance is crucial.

Top Tier:  Bite of the Jellyfish, Bull Market, Dangerous Experiment, Glimpse of the Abyss, Heat of Battle, Kiii-YAAAH!, Pocket Demon, Scrounging, Violet Meditation

Second Tier:  Avenging Thunder, Dark's Soft Whisper,  Dirk Wisely's Gambit, Entropy Tap, Fortress of Shadow, Garden of Bronze, Nine Dragon Temple, Payback Time, Shield of Pure Soul

Ramping Power
Staying on top of the power curve is where you want to be, and these cards will help you stay there.  These are cards that are going to let you gain power and serve some other useful purpose.  

Top Tier:  Bandit Hideout, Big Daddy Voodoo, Dump Scrounger, Iron Monkey, Johann Bonengel, Lord Hawksmoore, Mole Network, Paper Trail, Quantum Sorcery, Swiss Banker, The Hungry, Virtuous Hood, Vivisector

Second Tier:  Bounty, Chin's Criminal Network, Claws of Darkness,  Doomsday Device, Feast of Souls,  Fire in the Lake,  Helix Rethread, Hexagram Spirit, Imperial Boon, Path of the Clever Fox, Political Corruption, The Fox Outfoxed, The Legacy, The Rackets, Time Keeps on Slipping, True Son of Heaven, Vivisection Agenda, We Got the Funk

Bonus Power
There are a lot of cards who's main function is often something else, but they can gain you a point or two of power along the way.  

Top Tier:  Darkness Priestess, Darkness Warriors, Feeding the Fires, Fist of Shadow, Too Much Monkey Business, Serena Chase, Simian Liberation Army, Yung Chang

Second Tier:  Abysmal Deceiver, Blade of Darkness, Desire Manipulator, Darkness Pagoda, Dis-Timed, Dunwa Saleem vPAP, Jane Q. Public, Playing Both Ends, Inoue Oram, John Tower, Jury Rigged Dynamo, Kar Fai's Legacy, Molten Heart, Napalm Addict, Nefarious Master Chin, Novice Students, Now You've Mad Us Mad, Righteous Bro, Rookies, The Dragon Unyielding, Time Bandits, Triumvirate Dealmaker, Ulterior Motives, Web of the Spider vPAP, We Have the Technology, We Know Where You Live, Zen Logician 

Extra Site Power
Be sure not to overlook including sites in your deck that can generate you extra power.  While I usually stock lots of sites that are going to help me win (or stop someone else from winning), I almost always try to squeeze at least 4 sites (and often more!) that will keep my power flowing -- I also include the three sites listed under Comeback in this category.

Top Tier: Blessed Orchard, Bird Sanctuary, City Park, Family Estate, Gambling House, Golden Mile, Moebius Gardens, Monkey House, Phlogiston Mine, Proving Ground, Secret HQ, The Pinnacles, Trade Center

Second Tier:  ArcanoTower 2056, Biomass Reprocessing Center vPAP, Disco, Family Home, Grove of Willows, Hall of Brilliance, Hallowed Earth, Jade Valley, Market Square, Mount Monkybutt, Night Market, Primeval Forest, The Hub


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