What can we do to teach new players


Upon mobile release a wave of new players is bound to splash us. When that happens, it would be nice for them to have a variety of sources to learn from, so they can enjoy the game we all love, to its fullest, fast. Im not saying that there isn’t enough content (shouts out to ALL Streamers, Youtubers, writters of 9Moons, Turn2Mystic, Manaspring.ru, Scrypt makers and helpful members of Reddit and Forums), Im simply calling for a community brainstorming regarding the introduction and guided development of new players.

The thing is, as an old player, you, like myself, find many things natural and intuitive, like the existance of 2 generals, the way BBS works, the way battle pets move, positioning, contesting mana tiles, general guidelines for deckbuilding, replace and so on. Duelyst is a complex game and it can ne confusing for someone just exploring it to see the big picture, especially if they don’t fully understand the interdependence of seperate mechanics and principles. Im regulary ‘head-hunting’ for new players, and when I do find someone, I try to offer them as much guidence as I can, but the thing is, I always find myself ‘data-dumping’ them because theres many things to talk about and the priority of importance is hard to asses.

Here is my suggestion, create a site, or a simple sticky thread here, that would provide links to different resources (like articles and videos) organized by not where they come from but rather ahat they teach. So for instance, a dropdown list called “deckbuilding help” or “Replace” or “Board advantage and Tempo” would contain links to all resources regarding the certain topic. The Dropdown manues would alsobe orginezied in the order of importance, not in game importance, but the learning importance ( you can’t really make sense of importance of mana tiles if you don’t understand tempo). The dropdown manues could also be within dropdown manues labled “new to card games”, “new to digital card games”, “coming from Hearthstone” and alike, so the navigation becomes even easier.

Again, I call for community brainstorming regarding what can we do to teach new players. Tell me what you think would be the learning priorities, what teaching aproach would be best, how to make sure new players find what they are looking for and everything else you think is important.


Improve the ingame tutorial.
Update the wiki and reddit sidebar.
Add a sticky thread here containing existing resources.

Pretty much all we need. But I’ll say ingame tutorial should be the top priority as it’s experienced directly in the game and it gives people idea about what the game is going to be about. Majority of people don’t give enough of a fuck to visit websites to help them play the game so what we have in the game regarding the help should be top notch.


The problem is casual won’t do all that work like go to a site. Once you like a game do you usually look up sites and stuff. I stressed this before the game needed to have adventure mode first before they went mobile. Pve is a much nicer place to learn th e game and aquire gold imo. What I think we as older players can do is not play our Super serious decks and just play funncrazy decks. We can also not beat them to hard and rather stall games so they get a chance to see the game.


We could also create a thread where we offer to take a new player as an “apprentice”. Whenever you find a new player, link 'em to that thread. The mentor can then walk them through picking their main faction, building their first deck and their first ladder game amongst other things such as answering any questions they may have over an extended period of time. (This way, no data-dump, more like, one new thing every session).


I’ve been playing a faie solo deck and I get a lot more friend request cause people find it fun and unique and that’s what we should be showing them imo.


I’m not sure about what the community can do past what it has already done, but an ingame game manual outlying all the rules and keywords and such in EXTREAM detail would be very useful for new players


Yes, we could use a better, clearer in-game tutorial to teach new players the basic rules, but I see a bigger issue with this topic as a whole. That issue is that too many people simply have too crappy of an attitude and do not actually want to be taught. For various reasons- pride/ego and a lack of true knowledge/understanding of the game certainly not the least among them- too many of us think we’re significantly better than we actually are. Players make loads of excuses for losses- Opponent is using a “cheap” deck/tactic, game is mostly luck/opponent got super lucky, game is “pay to win”, etc. They don’t realize (or simply refuse to admit) how poorly they themselves are playing or that their deck is built suboptimally, or both. Duelyst is a skill-intensive game and the small things in game, and in deck building, matter a lot. Better players win out in the end, just like in poker.

Other than mechanics and basic strategy, which anyone can learn via experience and repetition, here are a few tips I’d give to new players-

  1. Focus on YOURSELF. It doesn’t matter if your opponent got lucky. Focus on what YOU could have done better. There IS something.

  2. Copy decks made by S Rank players EXACTLY and don’t change them. They know better than you do. Your changes make the deck worse. If you’re one of those “copying someone else’s deck is cheap and I only build my own” kind of people, you’re playing the wrong game.

  3. It’s a marathon, not a sprint. Even if you’re intending to be competitive, you don’t necessarily have to hit S Rank in your first month playing the game. The rewards for S as opposed to Diamond are pathetic. Likewise, Rank 1 in S vs bottom of the barrel S is one in the same. This is likely a game design flaw that CPG needs to address but that’s a topic for another day. Even if you’re an excellent player, it’s still going to take you in the area of 100 games or more to hit S. Focus on improving above all else.

  4. Remember why you’re playing the game to begin with- to have fun! If you find yourself angry, stressed, exhausted, etc. you really need to take a step back and take a break. This game isn’t worth getting wound up about. If you’re getting angry while playing more than once in a blue moon, this may simply not be the right game for you.


Speaking from my experience when I was a new player, there are a lot of cards, tokens, and interactions whose information is not made readily available to players. Additionally, the order of events when attacks are made or triggered effects happen are not immediately apparent either.

A lot of this is simply updating the game to include this information in some way that does not force players to make assumptions or test these themselves. Updating the wiki will help a lot too.


The only way to teach the new players is farming them hard on rank 20 with full meta decks. The weak will add you after the game to complain that this is unfair which is when you scream at them ‘THIS IS SHIM’ZAR!’ and kick them into the well.


This doesn’t teach anyone anything. It’s like if I told you to solve a bunch of algebraic problems with two solutions, but only presupposing one is correct.


Using correct decks built by good players as opposed to incorrect decks built by new players and then learning why they’re good via playing with them doesn’t teach anyone anything?

As we seem to often do, agree to disagree…


Just because an S-rank player is playing a deck with a high win rate does not mean that deck is perfect and that no changes should ever be made to that deck. Afterall, the state of the deck is achieved through trial and error in addition to theory crafting. Besides, what is an incorrect deck anyhow? I do not believe there is such a thing.

Mind you, players don’t have to be using copies of the best decks in order to have fun. Plus, if I’m not mistaken, the goal here is to ease new players into the game without worrying about the intimidating burden of knowledge.


No, it’s like if you told someone to learn how to play piano excellently before deciding to make modifications to the piano.


This thread is about advice to new players. Of course S Rank players can make imperfect decks! But new players are definitely not qualified to change them.


Mayhap. I understand your point, but I admit I’m biased towards creativity and discovery. I tend to feel players benefit more from exploring different deck possibilities and learning for themselves how and why these may or may not improve the deck. But this is partly tied to the reason why I feel the game really needs to make additional information more transparent.


So what should a new player do if they lack all the required cards? And should we just close doors on those players who like to experiment and exercise their creativity? Not only that, but having a deck and knowing how to use it are different things, and being used to changing your own deck may make make changes in the meta less intimidating.

Plus, reaching a high rank in a few weeks with a single deck you won’t tweek once won’t teach you about what makes a deck work as well as trying for yourself, even if it delays your climbing.


There is no such thing as a “incorrect deck” there are only decks that are either well done or need improvement. If a player doesn’t know jack squat about how to combo or play smart then it won’t matter if they’re playing an S-rank deck versus their own deck, they’ll still be a newb making newbish plays. It’s fine if they take tips on what to include in their own decks, but they need to have experience actually playing a deck before they can even think of imitating the success that S-Rank players have.


If we’re going to go with that analogy, someone who maintains pianos for a living doesn’t necessarily have to know how to even play Twinkle Twinkle Little Star. It doesn’t teach deck composition; it teaches what goes in that one particular deck.

If you think new players are bad because they don’t know how to deckbuild or wield a deck properly, you are seeing probably less than half the picture.

Playing well, and conversely playing poorly, involves plenty of concepts that we don’t really talk about when we talk about skill level. These concepts include things like controlling space, the dynamics of pressure, how best to spend resources, long-term decision making, et cetera. Sure, they’re part of the overall topic of skill level, or playstyle, or whatever you want to call it, but the times these things are actually discussed in-depth are few and far between.

None of these are taught by just using someone else’s deck, and if you think they are, you’re conflating the source of the knowledge with the trial-and-error inherent to learning something new.


It is extraordinarily rare for anyone to start composing music for an instrument before they have mastered playing it. That’s what people are saying here, all pedantic arguments aside – learn to play, then worry about deck building.

A new player is much better off netdecking and playing the deck exactly to learn the game than making modifications when they don’t know what they are doing. I can actually speak from personal experience in this – I was given a Faie aggro deck when I was learning, I made a couple of changes I thought would improve it, and was not doing well. When I asked for help I was told that I had removed essential cards that needed to be there for the deck to work.

Walk, then run. Playing is walking. Deck constrution is running. The advice to learn how to play with known-good decks is sound because it eliminates a variable so that if the player does poorly they know it is because of play and not deck design.



Okay, brief story time!

Once upon a time when I was a diamond 5 scrub, I wanted to make a Keeper Magmar deck. I saw two versions by two S-rankers. After playtesting, I decided to tweak it to my liking, even though I was advised against a couple of things by one of them.

I got into S-rank.

Of course, not everyone is as awesome as I am. giggles

Jokes aside, pure net decking doesn’t always work. You can’t pilot an excellent deck if you don’t understand the nature of it, and sometimes tweaking it may not necessarily improve it but might at least make it more intuitive for a player to use.

Copying a net deck EXACTLY has its merits, but one first has to know how the deck is meant to be piloted, whats a good opening hand for the deck, what you should be fishing for against certain matchups, etc etc.

Copying isn’t enough, you learn nothing from it. You learn a lot from discussing the deck (and of course testing it).