Let’s talk about thrive.

witcher triss merigold gwint

1 Why Buff Thrive?

There's several reasons thrive should be more powerful. First, it's a unique archetype. We want variety in the meta, so therefore buffing thrive would help with that. Second, it rewards players for playing the heckin' cool big boy thrive cards like Old Speartip, Ozzrel, and Yghern. There's kinda a majesty to such powerful tall units, even if they're extremely vulnerable to bounty, poison, and heatwave. I want to see more of them, especially because they too are mostly unique to MO. Finally most importantly, thrive is a good way to introduce players to Gwent. It helps them understand the importance of tempo, round control, and commitment.

In short, thrive is good variety, encourages the play of underplayed cards, and is good for beginners.

2 How does thrive work?

It's really simple. You play your cards from low to high power. Your lowest power units are the core thrive cards, nekkers and endrega larvae. You move onto some 4-power engines like The Beast, then Crones, 7's and finally your gold pointslam. Very smooth. There's a beauty to thrive because the card ordering is so natural and so in line with what you should do in a Gwent match. That is, you want to open with engines and follow up with progressively stronger pointslam until your opponent cries "uncle!".

Thrive gets spicier when you toss in stuff like Koschey, Caranthir, or The Bloody Mistress. Kikimore Queen isn't currently playable, but maybe it will make a comeback some day, who knows?

3 What happened to thrive?

Back in the day, a 2-point per turn bronze engine was practically unbeatable. Thrive had tons of these, so they simply had more points than many other decks. Thrive didn't care about shutting down your bronze engines because theirs were better. As for gold engines, they had either the bleed or maybe Dorregaray of Vole for that. Nowadays, 2 points per turn isn't as oppressive as it used to be. Thrive engines start very weak, so by the time they rev up, your opponent is probably getting ready to pass. Compare Endrega Larvae (4 tempo, 2 points per turn, one of the pair often gets removed) to the PoP Scoia'tael bronzes, Messenger of the Sea, or Alumni. Recall that larvae used to be arguably the strongest bronze card in the game. How the mighty have fallen!

4 How to fix thrive?

  • Adjust the power level of the big boys. In my opinion, pointslam cards should usually be at provision cost+2 points. If they have a downside, they can be stronger (Golyat and Yghern).

  • Add more big boys with more complex abilities.

  • Increase Nekker Warrior's power to 5. Nekker warrior hasn't been played in… ever. This might make it worthwhile.

  • Lower Endrega Larvae's provisions to 5. This is not a necessary change, but it does make sense when you compare Larvae to other greedy 6-prov bronze engines that proc on first turn.

  • Increase Bruxa's Bleeding to 3. Not a huge buff, but helps her contribute to vampire decks while also helps her stay relevant in modern times.

  • Buff Auberon to 6 power like the other leaders, so he can trigger Koschey on the turn he is played.

Source: https://www.reddit.com/r/gwent/comments/rp2vxm/lets_talk_about_thrive/

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