Marvel Snap is the perfect gateway drug for CCG fans who find Hearthstone too intimidating and in-person Magic: The Gathering tournaments can be too…well…you know. Snap is easy to learn, quick to play, and the game’s “escape” feature and limited, but charming, emoji palette keep the leveling grind refreshingly non-toxic.
Despite the CCG title’s welcoming simplicity and wholesomeness, it still features enough mechanics under the hood to make mastering the game a true challenge. What’s more, simply plugging in recommended decks isn’t going to teach you the lessons you need to learn to figure out which cards and strategies are the best for you.
With each new unlock comes an increasing amount of deck variability that forces you to think about new ways to play. That being the case, we’re going to give you two great decks to learn and build from for each major stage of the game. You’ll still need to learn the subtleties of the game (and the unique requirements of each match) as you go along, but these decks will put you in a great position to succeed.
Tiger King Odin
The first deck you should build off the bones of your tutorial deck is this one based on the “On Reveal” mechanic, which means that a card activates its power when it’s turned over.
The deck shown above is a great first build of that archetype, but it still offers plenty of room for customization based on what you unlock. For instance, Rocket Raccoon and Gamora require you to think ahead and predict what your opponent will do. You can also put in Star-Lord instead (or Groot or Mantis) for relatively similar results.
Elektra and Enchantress, meanwhile, have abilities that you’ll find plenty of use for. Elektra can kill an opposing 1 cost card (possibly taking out an empowered Ant-Man or a mobile Nightcrawler), and Enchantress (a powerful counter) will stop an Ongoing-themed deck dead in its lane.
However, the star of this show is the Odin/Tiger combo. Play the White Tiger on Turn 5 if it’s in your hand, then play Odin as your finale. Granted, you will need to pay attention to locations to make the most out of that combo. Playing this combo on Bar Sinister, which creates duplicates, is tough to top. Kamar-Taj will also empower On Reveal plays. On the other hand, watch out for Knowhere (which will actually lock down this deck’s abilities).
Tiger King Odin Deck Code:
Because it’s such a handy card and it’s handed out for free at the end of your tutorial, you’re going to see a lot of Blue Marvel-based decks early on. It’s not hard to see why. It’s playable on Turn 5, it’s an easy buff to all cards, and it’s decently strong in its own right. However, Enchantress is easily dropped by the end of the game, which can punish that early strategy. So let’s try an Ongoing deck with a twist.
Blue Marvel’s here, but it’s not a big deal if he doesn’t get played. He’s insurance for those times when you don’t pull Spectrum and can avoid a lockdown. Instead, you play lighter cards with a little extra protection.
For instance, Armor is there to protect Ant-Man (common Elektra bait). Namor can lock down a location all by himself, especially Atlantis, and he’s even better once he’s buffed by Spectrum. Cap can strengthen a locale, Morph is honestly just fun to play with, and Scarlet Witch is more insurance if you get a bad location. But Spectrum, who activates on reveal instead, is your secret weapon. She’ll buff the majority of your cards, which can lead to some significant advantages.
Spectrum Surprise Deck Code:
Once you get into pool two, you’ll start seeing new effects more often (including “Movement” abilities). Powerful but demanding, a good movement deck is hard to counter for many players. The trick to using one is to think like a chess player. The point isn’t where your cards are when they’re played. but rather where they’ll be by the end of the game.
The wild card in this deck that relies most on your ability to think ahead is Ebony Maw. He has to be pulled early, and he’s vulnerable to the Elektras and the Killmongers you’ll likely be running into. If needed, you can replace Forge or someone you’re not comfortable using yet with an Armor and some lucky timing. With the right moves and some forward planning, Maw’s lockdown effect is negated, and you can gradually build high numbers around him. Hulk Buster is also here to boost a small-cost card while opening up a slot in that lane.
The biggest thing to watch out for? Once your opponent knows you’re running a movement deck, they’ll also guess that you’re probably going to be strongest on the leftmost lane on the final turn. That’s when you’ll need to consider whether or not to place Heimdall on the board. Instead, you can always shake things up with Vision’s movement skill or a well-placed Strange.
Move It Deck Code:
I Am APOCALYPSE
Around the time you get to Marvel Snap‘s midgame, you’ll start learning about discard and destruction decks, which rely on risky gameplay to boost your card strength into the stratosphere.
Sword Master and Lady Sif are the staples of this particular build as they buff Apocalypse to unmatchable numbers (if he can stay alive throughout the final tally). Wolverine is equally comfortable here. No matter what happens, he’ll come back. Blade, meanwhile, is a low-cost value builder, and Swarm contributes some nice value.
I tend to favor keeping a few counters in play, so you’ll see a couple of cards here not seen in other Apocalypse decks. Killmonger is here to take out easy opposing cards, and it pops the Nova in this deck for that little extra “oomph.” Cosmo, especially if Limbo is a location, can also help protect Apocalypse from Shang-Chi. Since all of that is highly situational, consider running Sabretooth instead as a potential replacement. While he’s a little more obtuse in his uses than Wolverine, he’s still a good value card that’ll survive big attacks. America Chavez is here for one reason only: to baffle an enemy Yondu. If you’re feeling frisky, though, she can be treated as a custom slot.
I Am APOCALYPSE Death Code:
This great deck, adopted from Reddit, is structured around surviving, Sentinel flooding, and controlling locations.
Playing this deck well means having to learn one of Snap‘s most important lessons: how to recognize what kind of deck your opponent is playing as early as possible. Are lots of 1-cost cards coming out early? It’s probably a Kazar, which means you want to play Killmonger late to flip the script. Has Sunspot comes out? Be careful, because you might be facing Infinaut (whose placement condition offers a perfect combo). Prep Killmonger for Turn 5 and Shang-Chi on Turn 6, but make sure the latter is going to be revealed after your opponent or is at least taking a big location, like Hulks at the Gamma Lab.
Bucky is a healthy Carnage snack, but you can consider replacing the symbiote with Venom later on. Carnage will also happily eat those rocks cluttering your hand (if you can spare the energy). Chavez is here for the same reason as last time (dependability and possible counters).
But the biggest lesson you need to take from playing this deck is also the most valuable. No deck can win every game, and, if you’re playing a control deck well, you’ll learn that lesson when things are at their ugliest. For those times, remember that escape over defeat saves you cubes and minimizes your fall down the seasonal ladder.
Control Deck Code:
The dive into pool three can feel like a polar bear plunge. With a huge number of new cards to unlock, you’ll start soon facing decks you don’t have a clue how to counter. One way to push ahead is to harry your opponent into either giving up or ceding useful lanes to you for a win. For that strategy, you can build something like this “annoyance” deck designed to tilt the odds in your favor. It’s also fun to see an “Aaargh!” emoji from your opponent.
Agent 13 is here to give you a possible mulligan card, while Morph can give you a glimpse of what’s in your opponent’s deck (though he can certainly be swapped out if needed). Killmonger remains a reliable alternate in that situation, as your own 1-cost cards already offer appropriately annoying utility.
Time your Armor play right, and your opponent can’t pop their Nova, Venom, or Carnage combos. Alternatively, you can simply protect your little guys at bad locations. The rest of this deck’s cards slow down your opponent, negate their abilities, and can lock down lanes (hopefully in your favor). If you pull Storm, swap out Scarlet Witch immediately. Storm is more useful in the late game as she offers better control of the territory. You can also take out Leech and put in Shang-Chi, or replace them with Okoye for some extra buff power. No matter what, hang on with your fingernails, have fun, and you’ll survive among the heaviest hitters in Marvel Snap.
Abject Annoyance Deck Code