Nupul K
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We've played this duel 5 times already. And Jessa (me) ALWAYS loses to Saria - her Seal spell (that exhausts a single ready and collection of focused spells) along with that Rose Card that exhausts an opponents unit are severely hampering.

So that's about 6 cards and Jessa only has 3 Fears. The stupid Cut The Strings spell is useless against Saria since there really isn't any target alteration spell in Saria's prebuilt deck (AFAIK).

For this duel, Jessa's blood transfusion spell doesn't seem all that useful. In fact, Summon Blood Puppet is the ONLY useful one against Saria, but totally useless against Saria's Seal Spell.

There is nothing in Jessa's prebuilt deck to block anything on Saria's spellboard. Seems, Jessa is purely a defensive player - even though her blood-archers can do LOTS of damage, I've never been able to inflict anything on Saria since my blood puppet of 0 attack can siphon off all power from the archer by blocking (which is a ridiculous thing IMHO, that a 5-7 pt attack is completely stoppable by a 0-point blocker and there's no "pass through" of damage).

The other thing is that Saria has a cheap way (forget which card) to get back two dice, to any face of her choice by spending one die! That's HUGE, given that Jessa's units are really expensive. Couple that with Saria's side action of exhausting a die in the opponent's active pool, it becomes quite lethal for Jessa. And Jessa's side actions are almost non-existent or useless.

So, can Jessa really ever win against Saria with a prebuilt deck? The only strategy that I haven't applied is "wait and watch" i.e., Jessa keeps passing to see what cards are being laid out and how the game unfolds and then plays these cards when Saria's units are exhausted and then attack her directly. Seems Saria is way too overpowered for Jessa. Am I missing something or Jessa has a very slim (i.e., tends to zero) chance against Saria?
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The Jessa preconstructed deck can be difficult to play, because it has you doing several things that are at odds with one another:

* You want to clog their battlefield with junk
* You want the creatures they control to die so you can trigger Screams
* You want to apply damage directly to the Phoenixborn whenever possible, because Screams isn't enough on its own, typically

You also have several cards that are effectively useless, as you noticed (Cut The Strings, Blood Archer).

With that out of the way, let's take a look at your assets!

* Leech Warrior! Saria has Hidden Power, but that's only 3x copies worth of dice acceleration, and a Leech Warrior can easily negate that benefit. Pop an Undying Heart on that sucker, and see how Saria enjoys playing with 7-8 dice to your 10.

* Living Doll offers a great way to redirect damage back onto Saria. Oh, you wanted to attack with your Seaside Raven? Well, how about I block with Living Doll, pay 1 to send that 3 damage back to Saria, and then drop a Final Cry for an additional 2 damage? And take note! You can recur Living Doll with Ceremonial dice for just a Power symbol, because it has an attack of 0. So you don't really need to care how many times Living Doll ends up in the discard (and if you can't afford to use it this turn, you can use it to meditate).

* Redirect combines with the above two units really well; you can have Jessa step in front of an attack that would kill a key creature (Leech Warrior), then Redirect it to one you don't mind losing (Living Doll).

* Cut The Strings is entirely useless for destroying alterations, but note that you don't have to destroy an alteration to trigger it. It can also be used to apply damage to your own units. Or as a good way to stall without passing on your main action, if need be (and remember that you can meditate from your spellboard, so there's little reason not to play it because it can always modify a die for you later).

* Blood Archer's Battle Advantage allows it to trade with Ravens. It's so expensive, though, that this might not be a good thing. Mostly, you'll probably want to meditate this one away because the stars are unlikely to align for you to be able to do 5 damage with it. Or, if you have enough dice, you can drop one on the board and then ignore it, since it will serve as a decent deterrent.

Good luck!
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