Net-Decking: A Discussion

gerald witcher3 gwent

I've just recently returned to Gwent (after about 8 months), and I've noticed a decent amount of complaints about "net-decking". As someone who just made the climb from rank 15 back to Pro Rank for the first time in months, I would just like to say that I would much rather prefer people play decks from the Meta Snapshots than otherwise.

I say this because climbing through the lower ranks was filled with mald inducing random Yrden/Igni, Lamberts, and other random tech cards that were definitely non-optimal but caught me off guard. Compare this to the higher ranks (1-3) when you can essentially read an opponent's hand based on what they have played. I find playing against net deckers a lot more consistent and in some senses easier as you can actively play around specific cards.

I know that getting smashed by NG and SY while playing your homebrew deck isn't very fun but the higher ranks are supposed to be "competitive". People are going to play the "best" decks, but knowing this allows you to tech against them. The dynamic of Meta vs. Anti-meta decks in the higher ranks is something, I personally enjoy. I love the feeling when my opponent doesn't expect me to have a Heatwave in my Harmony Deck or when AQ players get hit with a Lambert in my NR Witcher deck. For me, that's half the fun of Gwent, adapting/creating decks that counter the "top-tiers".

Overall, I feel like net-decking isn't such a bad thing for the game, and if anything, letting your opponent know exactly which 25 cards are in your deck is a huge disadvantage. Obviously, some matchups remain binary, and sometimes you just get slammed with 4 Joachims, but ultimately no decks are unbeatable. It's up to us to develop "Anti-Meta" decks to punish netdecking or at least push people to be more creative deck builders.

Let me know your thoughts, and as always, good luck on the path!


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