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MONO SHADOW GAUNTLET (large number - small number)

Gauntlet Deck By


Cost Curve




--- Welcome! ---

[/b]A fairly straight-forward gauntlet grinder, which I find extremely successful.

Make use of spiteful strike - which the AI will never see coming - and also make use of Memory Dredger - which the AI will not understand is just going to re-play the 2 cost unit you were attacking with.

Can increase the 2 drops all to 4 by removing memory dredger if you are playing this in ranked.

Will add more notes if there is any interest.

If you like the deck please give a thumbs up, comment any feedback, and feel free to share the deck with everyone!



Shiftstone Cost
Does not include campaign cost

Premium Cost

Influence Requirements

Power Sources

Power Calculator
Shiftstoned Icon View Deck on Shiftstoned

Deck Rarities
9 25 19 13

Card Types
30 1 23 0 26

Contains Cards From Campaigns
Dead Reckoning [Set1003]
Into Shadow [Set1004]
Homecoming [Set1005]


January 13, 2020

September 20, 2019


Eternal Version
v1.49 - Promises by Firelight

BBCode For Comments

Deck URL


Levexecus Edited Eternal Version: 1.47.6
Ripknife Assassin is much better than Blackhall warleader in gauntlet. Blackhall is obviously great when you land her on turn 2 and start attacking, but she's quite bad as a top deck and can get stalled out quite easily. You're not looking for the best possible powerlevel, but the one that loses the least and ripknife is useful at all stages of the game.

The AI has some strong aversions to ever attacking or blocking deadly units so they do a lot. For that reason, I also like having Kerendon Steward instead of things like suffocate. Even if they just sit there dissuading attacks until you find your other threats I'm happy.

Marionette Cross is also a great card. 5/5 for 3 power is just a beating. I think they're better than Instigator, but I can see an argument for either one.

I use 2 copies of Surgeon's Saw instead of the Dark Returns since I really like having the extra sources of lifesteal to catch up in losing matches.

Lastly, I run Amethyst Monument out of the market instead of the sigil. If you merchant on 3, there isn't much else you can play the same turn anyway if you had an active power and having yet another source of lifesteal is a great way to stabilize games. On the topic of markets, Slimespitter Slug is good tech against the occasional flyer heavy deck.
biologynut99 Edited Eternal Version: 1.47.6

I never did like Marionette cross, dunno why, can't really call it competition for instigator just because, having no 1 cost units, we certainly need 2 costs with some blocking ability to stop blitz attacks.

I did state in the main text that you can use ripknife instead of warleader. Might switch it to half and half to make it clear to people.

That all said, this deck has been absurdly reliable according to me and many others. I

I appreciate the feedback. Not sure i'd put cross in, or surgeons saw (although I do like lifesteal a lot). but i'll think about it, and put a note in the text saying people can try out your suggestions if they want to.
Shadowcran Eternal Version: 1.47.6
Going to try it, but also consider "Venomspine Hydra" as the AI also has trouble understanding it. I'm dead serious, I've sent in one where the AI had 25+hp and 6 units on the board and 2 of them killed it in blocking thus destroying themselves and all the rest while I still had 4 units to attack next.
biologynut99 Eternal Version: 1.47.6
Ill check that out. Never though about using it.

Also, check out my Kairos Gauntlet OBLITERATOR for easy rolling through gauntlet!
Shadowcran Eternal Version: 1.47.6
That, Umbren Reaper(which you already have), Cirso and all exalted units seem to give the AI trouble. This is NOT the main reddit site but the one for only vs the AI discussions. You'll pick up even more tips there.
biologynut99 Eternal Version: 1.47.6
Memory dredger also a great one. Vs AI

I'll check out the subreddit thx.
Shadowcran Eternal Version: 1.47.6
Yeah, you're right about Dredger. I'd forgotten. Maybe we should all compile a list on that subreddit of "cards the AI struggles against". Zal-Chi is another one.
biologynut99 Eternal Version: 1.47.6
Ooh, also Tocas, because the AI will attack/block assuming it has a combat trick but it cant actually play it.

Roxie Eternal Version: 1.47.5
Hey this looks good! I can't test it though since I only have 1 Kerendon Merchant.

I agree about adding Emblem of Makkar, that card is a lifesaver. Also, I know that Devastating Setback is more flexible, but I usually go with Malediction since it's more DEVASTATING lol.
biologynut99 Eternal Version: 1.47.5
Roxie how do you not have friggin kerendon merchants? They came out like 2 years ago or something! You have emblems but not mono faction merchants!

Yeah I just scooped up another Emblem of makkar from draft, so might stick them in.
Roxie Eternal Version: 1.47.5
I began playing this February when they started rolling out multi-faction merchants so I got those first HAHAHA. The only mono-faction ones I crafted is the Time one.

The emblems are good - saved me from power flood in some games. Emblems of Makkar and Grodov are the ones I use most often because both their abilities are great! Sorry for hijacking the thread btw! Will try this deck once I get the Kerendons LOL
DEADINSIDE Eternal Version: 1.47.4
Is this deck playable without Desecrate? What could be a viable replacement?
biologynut99 Eternal Version: 1.47.5
Hmmmm. Its really pretty central since it removes any unit (except aegis of course), and we have enough life steal (vara, spiteful strike, etc) to make the -3hp alright.

If you really insist, you could try an extra of annihilate and suffocate (from 3 of each to 4 of each). Then add 2 "in cold blood" i guess.

Do you just not have any desecrate? Pretty top shelf card.

------------------------- All that said, this deck is playable without desecrate, but its an important card ------------------------
maingi Eternal Version: 1.47
There are 2 decks I think are the best in gauntlet - Mono-shadow and TS even+gnash+azindel - and this one is definitely the faster one, though I usually never lose with either of them.

Not used to having no 1-drops. Your thoughts on Street Urchin? Marionette Cross? Bloodseeker ( )?
VoidKing Eternal Version: 1.47.3
Just my recommendation: I wouldn't take a thing out for any one drop here. I understand your motivation, but I just think it would hurt more than help. I'm still dominating gauntlet and casual PvP (for packs every day) with this.

Still, if you decide to test it, I'd be curious how it goes for you.
biologynut99 Edited Eternal Version: 1.47.6
Yeah I can think of 1 drops which would fit, but what would you take out to make room for them? Thats the question.

Also, check out my new gauntlet obliterator! Kairos Gauntlet Obliterator! Works wonders!
biologynut99 Eternal Version: 1.47
Haven't tried bloodseeker yet.

Marionette cross I just never really liked. It's stats are good, but it's got tough competition for that spot.

Urchin now I like. Haven't used it in this deck but I use it in Argenport decks. Feel free to try it in this deck although I'm not sure what you would take out to make room for urchin. Suppose you could experiment by adding a few and a power to have 78 cards - just to experiment - but this deck is pretty fine tuned!

Happy you like it.

If you want, check out my other decks - specifically "Experimental Equaltaurs". It's not exactly the version of the deck I'm using because as the name says, I experiment a lot with it. That said, it's a great template to see how to deck works and you can then make changes as you like.

Here's the link. It might not be as tottaly fine tuned for Gauntlet as this mono shadow, but it's SUPER FUN.
VoidKing Edited Eternal Version: 1.47
The most underrated deck on right now.

This deck is downright VICIOUS. I've played it for a month straight, and it just won't lose if you get a turn 2 unit and don't get land screwed (which are both not that common).

The AI never sees spiteful strike or cabal tactic comming, but the truth is... players rarely do either...

Absolutely insane against the gauntlet. As long as you don't play the gauntlet twice in a row (when the AI ups the difficulty without telling you, which I would, have, and do consider cheating), this deck doesn't just beat the gauntlet every time, it absolutely eviscerates it (and, yes, that includes all except MAYBE one of the bosses).

On top of that, it's the number one go to for easy PvP wins for packs every day (at least, in casual).

If you're out there trying to find the first (or best) deck to beat the gauntlet with, do yourself a favor and look no further.

biologynut99, maybe this deck is just up my alley to pilot, I don't know, but from my experience, you've tapped into gold here. Well done!
biologynut99 Eternal Version: 1.47
If you find any flame of xulta cards you think fit, I'll be trying to see if any improvements can be made.

And yeah; I put spiteful strike in any Gauntlet deck which has shadow. The QuickDraw the AI never sees coming, allowing one big unit to wipe the enemy board sometimes (as AI seems to love trading lots of small guys for one of our own big guys), plus the lifesteal sometimes saves the day !

VoidKing Edited Eternal Version: 1.47.3
I think it's important to mention, at least somewhere in this thread, while we're talking about how stupid the AI can be, that I once Madnessed for a Reality Warden and swung (with other creatures he could have blocked, also), and he blocked it with a Knight-Chancellor Siraf and a Copperhall Elite, killing all three when he still had a turn coming.

On the topic, I think the Madness is the best card in the market, though I agree with every card in there, too.

The only one that might be exchangeable would be Umbren Reaper, though he's definitely been the right choice at times. We should keep that in mind while considering Flame of Xulta cards.
biologynut99 Eternal Version: 1.47.3
Yes, Madness is insane for Gauntlet (bad pun)

AI just herps the derp and treats it like an enemy unit.

As far as Reaper you are right it's the one card I most try to experiment changing.

Pros - flying, pretty much guarantees +5/-5 for you/enemy

Cons - so many other cards can fit here, reaper gets permafrosted or silenced, has no board impact on player turn


If you find a good fit for that spot lemme know. I'm starting to craft fox cards as I see which ones work in top decks, but I'm not shiftstone rich so I'm going carefully.

VoidKing Eternal Version: 1.47.3
Yeah, same here. If you get a chance, could you let me know what other cards you've tried in that spot? I'd like to hear what else you considered and why/how it worked.
biologynut99 Eternal Version: 1.47

Thanks so much for the feedback!

The deck took influence from previous mono shadow decks, but I found this particularly fine-tuned.

Now that FoX is out and we're all gonna Gauntlet back to masters (get those sweet platinum chests on the way!) I think this deck will be quite useful!

VoidKing Eternal Version: 1.47
Absolutely! I did have some trouble with a couple of the new gauntlet decks now that FoX is out, but I'd already beaten it twice just before, so it's probably just the standard "gauntlet in cheat mode" scenario.

Speaking of FoX, I'd be very careful swapping anything in from this new set. Not saying that appropriate switches aren't there, just that I can't imagine what to take out. Even the argenport instigators, when played right, seriously leverage an already dangerous situation for the enemy. Curious, though to see what could become of it with any new options.

Anyway, congrats again!
biologynut99 Eternal Version: 1.47.5
I have trouble beating the Cultist deck with most of my gauntlet grinders. Still trying to find a way through that one. Less trouble with this mono shadow though cuz we have good sweep (devastating setback, which COULD be replaced with Malediction, but it costs more and hits some of our units) and removal for some of their important cards (like that annoying one that ramps power like crazy).

biologynut99 Eternal Version: 1.47
Yeah Instigators just saved my ass twice in my last gauntlet run, couldnt get past some huge blockers, but managed to ping the last few health from the enemy by killing units.

I thought u might want to take a look at this other deck I made. Uses Yisha the Equalizer along with Tavrod/minotaurs, and I find it extremely fun to play, and pretty succesfull (maybe a little less statistics wise than this mono shadow, but not bad). I call it Equaltaurs, this is a work-in-progress version

As far as FoX goes, I did have some trouble with the cultist deck (i still won both times tho).

Lastly, if I had to give kudos to a gauntlet deck that WRECKS the AI its this one Called "Here Be Kairos I guess it only works if you have Kairos (I was using the deck with only kairos in market, but it was so good I crafted 3 more). This deck is so powerful because all you have to do is survive long enough to pop Kairos out, and then just play units to burn the enemy health.

Wish I could claim I created this last one, but its amazing deck worth sharing.

So see if you like the Equal Minotaurs deck I made (if just for fun!), and if you ever want another deck to smash through gauntlet, this "Here be Kairos" deck is top of the list of other peoples gauntlet deck!

Thanks again for the kind words, it WILL be difficult finding anywhere to swap cards out for FoX, but we'll have to see what purple cards turn out super powerful!
VoidKing Eternal Version: 1.47
Sure thing, man, will check them out :)
biologynut99 Edited Eternal Version: 1.47.5
I'm looking at emblems right now as a possible fit into this deck. The -1dmg wont matter too much we have lifesteal, and then we aren't aiming for like 8 or 9 power so the decimate isnt a big deal.

Havent crafted a full set of them, but am thinking about putting 4 in here as a test.

Also, if I decided to take the plunge and craft them, would be Incarnus, the shadow listener with Invoke. Not sure what she would replace, but unblockable and +a card sounds pretty sweet.