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Knucklebones Control (Gauntlet)

Gauntlet Deck By


Cost Curve




This is my version of Ixtun Knucklebones Control for Gauntlet play. Lets take a look at the cards:

Deck Strategy
While Knucklebones is the main win condition, I've wanted to try out Calderan Cradle since it was buffed, and this seemed like a good deck to use it in. The combination of Cradle and Vargo Redclaw should, at the very least, help get the game into the late stages so that Knucklebones can hit the board. Sometimes, though, the combination of Vargo and the removal package in the list can win the game before Knucklebones even has a chance to be played.

Win Conditions
Calderan Cradle: As I mentioned, I've been meaning to try Cradle in a list since its buff, and it's a pretty nice addition to this list. The ability to generate a blocker at fast speed with cards like Display, Torch, and Wisdom of the Elders is really helpful.

Knucklebones: The main win condition of the deck and the greatest card DWD has ever made. Unlike pre-Market Knucklebones decks, you only need a single copy in the Market here.

Sword of the Sky King: Relic Weapons in Gauntlet tend to force the AI to make REALLY poor attacks just to remove the weapon. It's also good at picking off annoying creatures like Blistersting Wasp and Steward of the Past. Not a huge piece of the Win Condition puzzle, so there are only 2 copies in the list.

Vargo Redclaw: Vargo really shines in any sort of list packing heavy board removal. I still find it a little gross every time I drop Harsh Rule and then declare an attack with Vargo. I will say that the AI doesn't seem to have any issue dealing with Vargo, though - I wonder if that would still be the case if you could target Vargo with hard removal. There go my dreams of a Vargo / Stormtamer Operative middle-finger-to-the-AI deck. /s

Other Choices: Flamestoker

Card Draw
Strategize: My go-to for card draw in any Primal deck. The ability to get dead cards out of your hand is so good. I'm honestly surprised this card doesn't require double Primal influence.

Wisdom of the Elders: A slightly more flexible option than Honor of Claws. It works a little better with Cradle as well.

Other Choices: Honor of Claws, Xo of the Endless Hoard

Ixtun Cargo and Seek Power: The influence requirements aren't oppressive in this list, so running Cargo over Petition allows for a little upside when drawn later in a game. Always nice when you're searching for a Win Condition, pull Cargo, and RNGeebus offers you a Sword of the Sky King!

Other Choices: Petition

Howling Peak Smuggler and Ixtun Merchant: You could also run Red Canyon Smuggler here with my Market list, but with no buffs and no need to be super aggressive, Howling Peak Smuggler was my choice. She works really well with some of the Removal options in the list and Market. 8 Merchants increases the chances to grab a Knucklebones when you're ready to play it.

Other Choices: Jennev Merchant, Red Canyon Smuggler, Winchest Merchant

Unit Removal
Display of Honor: A really flexible option offering life gain and a Polymorph-like removal option. Turn an AI-controlled Sandstorm Titan into a goat and block it with a freshly created Dragon!

Hailstorm: Gets rid of the vast majority of Grenadin, Onis, Humbugs, and other annoying early game pests.

Harsh Rule: Eternal's easy button. Push it when you need it.

Torch: Somehow, Howling Peak Smuggler makes Torch even better, which probably isn't fair. If it's not the best Removal option in the game, it's certainly the most efficient.

Other Choices: Auric Runehammer, Defiance, End of the Story, Jawbone Greatsword, Martyr's Chains, Mortar, Obliterate, Permafrost, Torrential Downpour, Valkyrie Enforcer, Vanquish

Power Sources: 33 (25 power, 4 Ixtun Cargo, and 4 Seek Power)
Influence: 19 sources of Fire, 22 sources of Justice, and 25 sources of Primal (counting Diplomatic Seal, Ixtun Cargo, and Seek Power as a source for each).

Market Choices
I tend to build my Markets in a specific way (Win Condition, Unit Removal, Fixing, Relic Removal and a Wild Card spot). I never assume a Market for a deck is set in stone and neither should you - feel free to build it however you want.


Shiftstone Cost
Does not include campaign cost

Premium Cost

Influence Requirements
2 2 2

Power Sources
8 11 13 10 4

Power Calculator
Shiftstoned Icon View Deck on Shiftstoned

Deck Rarities
13 17 35 3

Card Types
12 7 35 0 26

Contains Cards From Campaigns
Dead Reckoning [Set1003]
Homecoming [Set1005]


April 15, 2019


Eternal Version
v1.45 - Homecoming

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