In The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt, Gwent is a fast-paced card game based on the clashes of two armies, where the player has to achieve the most points in two out of three rounds to win the game. In the base game, there are four factions: Monsters, Nilgaardian Empire, Northern Realms and Scoia’tael.
Each of the playable cards ranges between combat cards, abilities or effects. Players must find the most tactical way to use their drawn hand to win the rounds, but it’s not all luck of the draw. Gwent may be incredibly tactical, but that doesn’t mean anything if you don’t have a strong deck to start with, and these cards rank among the most useful.
Geralt Of Rivia And Cirilla Fiona Elen Riannon
Most of the cards played are normal combat cards with no abilities, and the most powerful versions of these are Geralt and Ciri’s cards. Both are hero cards with an attack power of 15 and are not affected by weather effects or getting burnt by Scorch. Ciri’s card is won during Gwent: Big City Players and Geralt’s card is won during Gwent: Playing Thaler.
The best way to play these cards, especially if the opposition uses a large number of close combat cards, is to play them together with a Biting Frost card. The opposition will lose the power of their close combats to one point each, while Geralt and Ciri will remain unaffected with a combined power of 30.
The Mysterious Elf is a close combat spy card that can be added to any deck. It has no attack ability, but spy cards, when used tactfully, can be extremely valuable as for every spy card placed in the opposition’s battlefield, two more cards can be drawn from the deck.
Being a hero card, Mysterious Elf grants the opposition no extra points and cannot be revived, which means there is no risk of the card coming back against the player. It is also the only spy card that can be added to the Monsters and Scoia’tael decks. Mysterious Elf is obtained late into the game and only by winning it from Gremist during Gwent: Skellige Style.
Decoy is a Special Card with no attack ability, and its purpose is to replace a card on the player’s side of the battlefield, so the swapped card can be reused. Other than being won off NPCs, Decoy can be bought off several innkeepers or by the Crow’s Perch Quartermaster.
One of the best tactics is to use the Decoy to replace a medic card, which means that the medic can be used twice, reviving two cards in total from the player’s discards. Another valuable tactic is to regain a powerful card from the battlefield if the player might lose the round, or if the opposition has played a spy card on your side, to steal it and replay the spy card for more drawn cards.
Scorch is a neutral Special Card similar to Decoy but can be very effective if used wisely. When played, it kills all the strongest cards that are sitting on the same attack power and sends them to the discard pile. Scorch is won or purchasable from innkeepers.
The best way to use Scorch is to place down low-power combat cards for the first few turns, forcing the opposition to play higher cards. Once they have a few cards down that have the same attack power, use scorch to take them out. They can be revived from the discards, but this wastes medics and cards from the opposition’s hand. This is also very affected if the opposition is using Commander’s Horn for an attack boost.
Yennefer Of Vengerberg
Yennefer’s card is a hero medic with an attack power of seven and gets placed in the ranged combat field. Yennefer can only be obtained by winning it from Stjepan during the quest Gwent: Playing Inkeeps.
Despite being down-powered compared to Geralt’s card, having a medic ability means Yennefer can revive a card from the discards and bring it back into play instantly, as well as not being affected by scorch or weather effects. Yennefer’s card is also the only medic that can be added to the Monsters Deck, so if the player prefers this deck, Yennefer is an extremely valuable card to add.