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Sauron

Sauron Theorycraft, Strategy, and Decklists

Looking to prepare for the release of Sauron on January 10 and find out if the card is good? We delve into the strategies and potential of the new Series 5 card Sauron and theorycraft what decks it can fit in to!

Sauron will be hitting Marvel Snap on January 10, 2023. This card will be entering Series 5 and can be purchased for 6,000 Collector’s Tokens or opened via the Collection Level track.

Sauron is a 3 energy, 3 power card which has the ability – On Reveal: Remove the abilities from all Ongoing cards in your hand and deck.

Strategy and Potential

This effect is potentially incredibly powerful. There are several cards with negative ongoing effects and Sauron for the cost of a 3 energy, 3 power card, removes all these negative effects and allows you to play these overstated cards without downside as you see fit. The catch? There is only exactly 4 cards which have a direct benefit from the card:

Every other ongoing card becomes worse from this effect (quick note, Sauron would turn off Patriot and Electro). This makes the deck builds for Sauron potentially limited. We have to include some mixture of the above cards, play Sauron prior to playing these cards, then play the card we want. In practice, this may at times feel much weaker than expected for Ebony Maw and Lizard. Holding these cards for later turns or playing Sauron in hopes you draw one of these cards prior to the end of the game does not seem to be a strong play.

In the case of Typhoid Mary and Red Skull, these two cards curve from Sauron and can have massive impact. They are already part of many Zero decks and been shown to be successful. This brings me to the next downside though of Sauron. He turns off cards which support these cards also. Sauron turns off Armor, Cosmo, and Luke Cage if they are not already on the board. You may point out that if they are already on the board it doesn’t matter, but this then requires you to draw the supporting cards turns 1 and 2, play them and then have Sauron on curve. So even if we are going for the big payoff cards, we need to limit other ongoing cards to get the benefit.

In short, Sauron may just be poised too be the worse X-Mansion hit for many decks and a nice part of some Zero build, but not an essential card.

Now that we have covered the limitations, there are many positives. As far as 3 energy cards go, the stat line is not bad. A lot of the 3 energy cards serve set purposes in decks, so 3 power is not a huge tempo loss against opposing decks. On Reveal cards can be played alongside the card for example, so Shuri for example can be used to buff large cards and then be played alongside Taskmaster. Also if we are willing to drop other ongoing cards, we can play Sauron into Lockjaw to turn off the effects and potentially bring Typhoid Mary or Red Skull out without the effect. Even flooding strategies might be able to benefit from being able to play 10 power on 4 then 15 power on 5. The potential swings from the Sauron, Red Skull and Typhoid Mary plays could make up for all the downsides.

Lizard has proved to be a strong card without negating the effect, but one final note on Ebony Maw. There are many games you are going to draw Ebony Maw after 3. Sauron makes the card a 1 energy, 7 power card you can play anytime. This will be strong but shouldn’t be the build around of the deck.

This effect is strong, but maybe not as strong as it appears on the surface. There are a lot of fail states linked to not playing Sauron and this may make the decks he goes into very expensive, requiring specific synergies and times awkward to pilot. Zero decks already have significant success though and he plugs into many builds (but not all). However although the score reflects the strength of Sauron and the decks he immediately goes into, be warned, this would not be a recommended card as it is not required to make Zero decks work.

Unfortunately this is the most expensive set of theory crafts to date. There are no Series 1 or 2 featured builds as we do not believe Sauron makes consistent decks with the limited card pool worth featuring.

Potential Score

Rating: 6 out of 10.

Below are some potential starter decks for Sauron with brief descriptions.

Starter Decks (Theorycraft)

Shuri’s Sauron
Created by SafetyBlade
, updated 26 days ago
2x Collection Level 18-214 (Pool 1)
2x Collection Level 222-474 (Pool 2)
6x Collection Level 486+ (Pool 3)
1x Series 4 Rare – Collection Level 486+ (Pool 4)
1x Series 5 Ultra Rare – Collection Level 486+ (Pool 5)
3.1
Cost
0-
1
2
3
4
5+
4.7
Power
0-
1
2
3
4
5+

This deck looks to set up a Shuri play on 4 post Sauron into Typhoid Mary or Red Skull and goes all in on this play. As we can do this by Turn 5, Arnim Zola aims to transfer the power to the other two lanes, avoiding potential Shang Chi counters. As we are running Arnim Zola, Ebony Maw can be played by turn 3, with potential to add power later. In addition, if we draw Shuri late, Sauron on Ebony Maw creates a potential 14 power 1 drop for the final turns. Combine this with Titania on the last turn and that’s 21 power for 2 energy alongside Shuri.

Zero can combo with almost the whole deck. Taskmaster also appears as a back-up way to spread power if we miss on Arnim Zola, and at 5 energy he combos well with Titania and Ebony Maw on 6.

This is the most all in version of Sauron deck but is also very expensive. Titania and Shuri could be cut for other power cards such as Maximus, but this will likely be less flexible.

Sauron Big Jaw
Created by SafetyBlade
, updated 26 days ago
1x Collection Level 1-14
1x Collection Level 18-214 (Pool 1)
1x Collection Level 222-474 (Pool 2)
8x Collection Level 486+ (Pool 3)
1x Series 5 Ultra Rare – Collection Level 486+ (Pool 5)
3.4
Cost
0-
1
2
3
4
5+
5.3
Power
0-
1
2
3
4
5+

This deck aims to utilise Lockjaw to get multiple Zero triggers and use Sauron to remove the negative effects of Typhoid Mary and Red Skull without having to get them onto board in order. The rest of the deck revolves around the Thor On Reveal package but this can be swapped for other on reveal packages depending on your own preferences. The core plan is Lockjaw on 3, into 3 drop and Zero on 4, allowing for Red Skull or Typhoid Mary on 5. if you Zero into the Lockjaw lane he will swap with a card in deck and still leave the effect to be utilised on following turns.

There is an anti-synergy with the card name=”Thor”] package but managed correctly this should not be a massive impact on the deck.

Sauron Venomized
Created by SafetyBlade
, updated 26 days ago
3x Collection Level 18-214 (Pool 1)
2x Collection Level 222-474 (Pool 2)
6x Collection Level 486+ (Pool 3)
1x Series 5 Ultra Rare – Collection Level 486+ (Pool 5)
2.9
Cost
0-
1
2
3
4
5+
4.9
Power
0-
1
2
3
4
5+

This final build is focused on building an early lead with card name=”Angela”] and other high power cards. Sauron negates the effects of your power cards and we Taskmaster to spread power later. This variation carries card name=”Venom”] as a potential back up. card name=”Thor”] can be used to negate the effects and allow for bigger Taskmaster targets. This build drops the Arnim Zola plan for some flexibility on turn 6 instead where we drop a few cards instead and spread the power around.

Who is Sauron?

As a child, Karl Lykos was attacked and bitten by a mutated Pteranodon whilst defending another child, Tanya, when his father had the amazing idea of taking him on an expedition to Tierra del Fuego. This attack resulted in Karl needing to absorb life energy from animals and humans to survive. He met Professor X and was working an project “Project Mutant” whilst studying to become a doctor. After Havok became fatally wounded after a battle with the Sentinels the X-Men took him to Dr. Lykos as they believed they could trust him with the knowledge he is a mutant. After Lykos treated Havok, he began absorbing energy from him. This was the first time he had absorbed from a mutant and this triggered a transformation into a half-humanoid pteranodon, with a Savage Alter-ego. He then adopted the name “Sauron” (yep, he actually named himself after the Lord of the Rings).

He can trigger the transformation by draining energy from any mutant and he often used this ability to turn into Sauron and battle the X-Men. These battles led him to commencing attacks on the Savage Land as a potential ongoing source of satisfying his hunger where he was beaten over and over by Ka-Zar and a variety of mutants and heroes. Eventually Beast produced a formula which satiated his hunger and he was able to live purely as Dr. Karl Lykos once again.

As with all great villian arcs, he did eventually find peace and marry the love of his life Tanya and settle down again as Dr Karl Lykos. It was at this point Toad attempted to recruit him to the Brotherhood of Evil Mutants, tricked him into absorbing the life energy of Tanya, killing her and transforming him once again into Sauron.

Good Luck Have Fun and Stay Safe!

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SafetyBlade
SafetyBlade

SafetyBlade is an reformed Hearthstone addict and Marvel Fanboy from Australia. Needless to say Marvel Snap is the perfect game for him!

Articles: 41

8 Comments

  1. I never had a card game, where most of the content is totally worthless to me, because I will never own these cards and will not face them as well.
    The more cards they release the more stupid it gets.

  2. Turning off Electro’s ongoing is great, the +1 energy isn’t part of his ongoing.

    Inversely, the inability to play Ebony Maw after turn 3 is also not part of his ongoing, so Sauron wouldn’t negate that.

    Neither of these facts undermine your main point, but come on.

  3. He turns off cards in your hand and deck, NOT in play. Wouldn’t playing Patriot first allow you to also buff the stripped Ongoing cards you play? Making that viable?

  4. Extremely disappointed the devs haven’t demoting cards to lower pools yet. Didn’t they say they wanted to have 10 in each pool?! They just keep adding to Pool 5…

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