Get decked out
Shuffle your strategy with these Command & Conquer: Rivals decks.
Command & Conquer™: Rivals PVP
Strategy wins in this C&C RTS.
Been logging long hours with Command & Conquer: Rivals? Join the club. EA’s surprisingly approachable strategy game is as deep as it is fun. But with so many units to choose from, which deck should you run?
According to Rivals lead designer Greg Black, there are three keys to a strong deck: build around a core strategy, have units within that strategy that can answer any unit type and spread your unit costs throughout the duration of the game.
“Every deck should have a clear win condition,” Black says. “It’s a set of units or commanders you aim to build that will almost certainly guarantee a win by pushing your opponent off the Missile Pads, destroying all their Harvesters to bring them to an economic standstill or rushing down their base directly.”
It’s great advice, but what does a winning deck look like? Try these four on for size.
Liang Tech Rush
Deck: Commander: Liang, Missile Squad, Shockwave Troopers, Talon, Orca, Hammerhead, Titan/Mammoth Tank
This is an extremely defensive deck that has two core goals: harvest like crazy and delay the game until you can bring out your biggest units.
To maximise this deck, you’ll need to build and maintain two Harvesters. (Use the cost-efficient Missile Squads and Shockwave Troopers to protect them.) The next objective is to delay the game until you can afford your Titans or Mammoth Tanks. Be sure to match your opponent on the control points, keeping the Missile progression bar yellow. Your goal is to spend little and draw out the game until you generate enough money to pump out Hammerheads to dominate the sky and Titans or Mammoth Tanks to conquer the ground.
Deck: Commander: Kane, Laser Squad, Flame Troopers, Venom, Banshee, Phantom, Inferno
Much like the Liang deck, this unique Nod variant hinges on delaying the game. It also relies on a two-Harvester strategy that attempts to stall the Missile while maintaining Tiberium upkeep.
Laser Squads, Flame Troopers, Venoms and Banshees are effective at holding off the enemy early through midgame. But the real goal is to reach the endgame, where a combination of Phantoms, Infernos and Kane’s Obelisks of Light will obliterate anything your opponent sends your way. Infernos are strong against all Ground types, while Phantoms rule the skies. Kane’s Obelisks simply seal the deal for anything your Infernos don’t destroy in one hit.
Deck: Commander: Jackson, Jump Jet Troopers, Sniper Team, War Dogs, Pitbull, Predator Tank, Talon
Prefer to strike quickly? This deck relies on building an early advantage by rushing out War Dogs to charge the Missile before your opponent can react.
The extended vision range on the War Dogs also lets you scout out your opponent’s strategy. If they build two Harvesters, harass them with Pitbulls, Jump Jet Troopers or Predator Tanks. If they go with just one Harvester, aim to build counters to whatever units your War Dogs are scouting out. Due to the natural tankiness of War Dogs, you can park your Snipers safely behind them and take out any Infantry that try to walk onto points.
Deck: Commander: Jade, Militant, Laser Squad, Chemical Warriors, Chem Buggy, Attack Bikes, Banshee
This Nod deck features one of Rival’s most potent combos: Jade’s Catalyst Missile and the Tiberium Clouds produced by the Chemical Warriors.
Your starting move, however, is to take the first Missile as quickly as possible with Militants, Laser Squads, Buggies and Attack Bikes. This is partly a smokescreen; the real point is to run Chemical Warriors across the map while saving up Tiberium, even if it means giving up control of the pads after taking the first Missile.
Once your Chemical Warriors reach the opponent’s base, try to target as many base hexes and nearby enemy units as you can. Jade’s Catalyst Missile will trigger a chain reaction with the Tiberium Clouds generated by the Chemical Warriors that will deal heavy damage to the enemy base. If you can lay four Tiberium Clouds around the base, you will deal one Missile’s worth of damage to your opponent. And even if you can’t reach your opponent’s base, the Chemical Warriors and Catalyst Missile combo is efficient at taking down larger units.