The numbers aren’t there yet for the new Season Pass card, but the deckbuilding challenge sure is a great brainteaser. As it stands, The Phoenix Force is considered fun by a majority (and disappointing by a few). Still, I haven’t seen the terms “Broken”, “OP”, or “Powerful” when it comes to The Phoenix Force, and that is completely fine.
In this article, I’d like to take you through my thought process for how I built around the card and ended up with a deck that I’m almost sure is the right way to go about The Phoenix Force. Of course, I’m sure there are different angles to building around the card, and such a complex design will probably see its power greatly impacted by future releases, too.
Right now, I’ve got eleven cards I’m confident about; I’m just trying to convince myself the last one isn’t Shang-Chi. I mean, it probably should be, just like for most other decks right now considering how important the card is in the current metagame. Still, what I want to focus on in this deck is The Phoenix Force‘s role in the general game plan — especially whether it is a good idea to build solely around the card, or just consider it a strong option that’s not the only way to win a match.
Here is the deck:
The Phoenix Force Play Pattern
This is our Turn 2 or 3. You could also play Hulkbuster to boost Multiple Man even more. I don’t find this necessary, but it is a reasonable inclusion. You could also do that with Human Torch, but then you’d need to change the end of the sequence as you don’t get to impact all the lanes.
On Turn 3 or 4, Venom is the best destroy card for points, but the main idea is simply to get Multiple Man to die. Iron Fist should come after Venom on Turn 4 in order to set up the first move on The Phoenix Force when we play it on the next turn.
This what we have been building towards. Make sure to play the card on a location where it can reveal safely. If you don’t have priority, be particularly mindful of Professor X or Cosmo. With priority, Shang-Chi could be troublesome.
On the last turn, we want to move our Phoenix as much as possible to create a ton of nine power cards over all of the locations. You always want Ghost-Spider first since Doctor Strange will pull all your Multiple Man as long as they are the highest power card on your side of the field, filling the location in the process.
With this pattern, we usually easily reach about 20 points on each lane, a score able to rival most decks in the current metagame.
The Human Torch Play Pattern
There isn’t a specific pattern here like there is for Multiple Man; instead, we’re trying to reach a specific situation. Ideally, we want to grow Human Torch, bring it to Iron Fist‘s location, and then Beast both cards.
Then, with Human Torch and Iron Fist both free thanks to Beast, we can play in a way to move Human Torch to an empty location and use Arnim Zola on it to throw two big Human Torches on our other locations. This is a completely different pattern that most decks built around The Phoenix Force are not using. I’m tempted to believe it isn’t helping the deck’s reputation of just losing when it doesn’t draw into its signature card.
- With Beast, you can bring Human Torch back in hand and lose priority going into Turn 6. This completely negates a possible Killmonger from your opponent.
- On Turn 5, feel free to use Venom on the Human Torch you grew, which also will negate Killmonger. This can open Shang-Chi if you don’t have priority, though.
Ghost-Spider and Doctor Strange are also fine cards to Beast, but they do not allow you to isolate Human Torch later on. If you really go crazy on the growth (or simply don’t draw Iron Fist), go for the Venom line.
One of the biggest strengths of this deck compared to the current metagame are locations. Indeed, with the ability to move our cards (and the ability to use a Destroy location to get Human Torch or Multiple Man in the pool for The Phoenix Force, this deck feels among the best when it comes to simply bypassing location limitations.
Against some current dominant archetypes (which typically aren’t so great at playing on unplayable locations) or against Lockdown (which tries to leverage Storm and Spider-Man), this deck finds ways to challenge locations rather easily, forcing the opponent to win the other two to stay in the game. This will open great opportunities to leverage Shang-Chi or any other tech card you feel like trying.
Considering the deck is a notch below the High Evolutionary and Bounce archetypes for now, abusing the various locations to our advantage will go a long way in balancing these match ups and helping our overall win and cube rate.
Here are a few great locations for the deck:
- Altar of Death: Multiple Man on Turn 2 into The Phoenix Force on Turn 3 is sweet.
- Aunt May's, K'un-Lun: Buffed Human Torch or Multiple Man is always better.
- Bar Sinister, Cloning Vats: Venom shenanigans that we can duplicate with Arnim Zola later.
- Great Web: Human Torch quickly becomes huge.
- Sanctum Sanctorum, Death's Domain, Kyln: It’s not that difficult for us to play on these.
This deck clearly lacks the flexibility of Bounce and the confidence of a Lockjaw deck to Snap certain hands on Turn 1. Right now, The Phoenix Force should be considered a sweet gimmick that is able to win some games, but probably should not be your pick if you only care about winning.
However, what The Phoenix Force does provide is a great deckbuilding challenge, whether you try it in this kind of Destroy/Move hybrid deck or just slot it in a regular Destroy build.
Which destroy cards are ideal, what targets do you want to destroy for The Phoenix Force later on, are you all-in on a single game plan or looking for alternate play-patterns, are there obvious counters to your strategy in the current metagame?
Long before you even start questioning whether the deck is good or not, or which match ups you should Snap against, simply building this deck the right way is a challenge in and of itself.
As such, even if we all know which decks are the best to climb the ladder or gather some Infinite Tickets right now, challenging yourself in a way other than just trying to rack up as many cubes as possible could improve your skills more than playing the same established good decks.
Good Game Everyone.
Enjoy our content? You can Support Marvel Snap Zone and your favorite content creators by subscribing to our Premium community! Get the most of your Marvel Snap experience with the following perks for paid membership:
- No ads: Browse the entire website ad-free, both display and video.
- Exclusive Content: Get instant access to all our Premium articles!
- Meta Reports: Exclusive daily meta reports, such as the Top 10 Decks of the Day, Top 30 Cards, and Top Card Pairs tailored for you!
- Team Coaching: Join our free weekly team coaching call sessions on the Discord server. Claim your Premium role and gain access to exclusive channels where you can learn and discuss in real time!
- Premium Dashboard: Get full instant access to the member-only dashboard, the all-in-one page for all your benefits.
- Support: All your contributions get directly reinvested into the website to increase your viewing experience! You get also get a Premium badge and border on your profile.
- Special offer: For a limited time, use coupon code SBYREX4RL1 to get 50% off the Annual plan!