Preparing for the Cold Hunt Expedition Open with Patrick Sullivan

Preparing for the Cold Hunt Expedition Open with Patrick Sullivan

Hello, Eternal fans—this is Patrick Sullivan, one of the designers on Eternal. This weekend, we are excited to bring you another high-stakes tournament, the Cold Hunt $5K Expedition Open.

The short summary is that this tournament runs from this Friday, October 8th until Sunday, October 10th. Starting on Friday, you can register in-client for the event, and then play 28 matches of Expedition against other competitors for an opportunity to play in the finals bracket on Sunday. You can play through your matches at your own pace through Friday and Saturday, and if you are among the 64 players with the best record you’ll proceed to single elimination play on Sunday. The winner of the event receives $1,500 and a slot at the World Championships, but even if you don’t make the Sunday cut everyone receives Revelations boosters and four alternate art copies of Howling Peak. You can find a comprehensive breakdown of the event here.

None of this is news to our longtime tournament players, but what about people new to Expedition, or the game in general? What follows is something of a FAQ, plus some resources for people looking to dip their toes in the water this coming weekend.

What is Expedition?

Expedition is a constructed format that focuses primarily on our most recent sets, with older cards that are in the Draft Packs supplementing those sets. Expedition is a separate tab where your decks are saved, and you can also select the “Expedition” tab underneath the Set filter inside of “Advanced Filters” to populate your search with the correct cards. In addition, an entire list of legal sets, promos, and Draft Pack cards can be found here.

What is good in Expedition right now?

Well, that’s what the tournaments are for, to sort these things out in real time, for real stakes. But fortunately we have an active, “living” archive of current (and old) Expedition decks from Stormguard789 up on Eternal Warcry. I’m not advocating any of these archetypes specifically, or saying these are optimized builds, but rather that this is a good “jumping on” point for a variety of archetypes and play patterns in the format. In general I think Eternal Warcry is a great resource for exploring a variety of strategies across all formats, so poking around in the Expedition Decks section can be useful research.

Well, what are you playing right now?

Since returning to Dire Wolf I’ve been actively playing all of our formats, both as research and because its really, really fun. I reactivated my free-to-play account, partially to research that experience, and so I built an Expedition deck that seemed plausible to me, mostly constructed out of cards I already owned.

A couple of points on this:

  • Recombobulate is a pet card. No, I will not cut it, but if there’s something you want to add to the deck, I suggest starting there.
  • Shatterglass Mage has been great. Between Permafrost and strategies centered around attachments (Relics and Weapons), it hasn’t felt short on targets.
  • This deck absolutely needs a market. The expensive cards necessitate a high power count, and a bunch of the cheap cards (Searing Strike, Temple Scribe, arguably even Alluring Ember and Amber Acolyte) have a lot to do with shoring up the aggressive matchups. As such, the deck has a bunch of ineffective cards against control decks, and also has no way to mitigate drawing too much power in games that go deep. Speed Grafter seems like the best choice to me–Time has some juicy anti-control targets, and the deck plays a bunch of hitters that would love to get Charge–but any option would materially improve the deck.

Hopefully this gives you a good jumping on point for Expedition play, either for this coming Open or just in general. And if you can’t make it to the event this weekend, make sure to check out the Sunday broadcast over at our Twitch channel at 11AM MDT where Andrew Baeckstrom and I will be providing commentary of the Top 64. 

As always, thanks for your continued support! Don’t forget to sign up for the Dire Wolf Newsletter to earn one free Eternal pack each week and stay up-to-date on the latest news!