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  1. There is no perfect amount of either since it all depends on what strategy you're going for with what sets are put in the deck and what cards show up in the center for the first 3 or 4 rounds. That's what I've learned after playing Ascension for 3 years. Some tips I think work: - Learning which cards work best together. This is the core and best strategy. Lifebounds and Mechana usually work well together in abundance while Enlightened and Void cards are more like support cards for thining or cycling your deck. Still, it depends on the sets put into play. - Knowing when to go for the honor in the pool (from monsters and Lifebound) or from bought cards (Mechana constructs and low cost to honour ratio cards). - Learn your opponent's strategy by paying attention to the cards he/she is going for and play against it. If you're both going for the same factions, it's going to be a race for the same cards. If your opponent is snatching the cards you want, you'll want to switch it up. - Hope you're first! When you're first, you usually have the advantage of picking the best card in the first flop of the center row. - If you're last, feel you're ahead and you can drain the pool, do it. If you feel behind, go for honor from cards to get at least one last turn if your opponent drains the pool on their turn. It's difficult to give specific advice since the game is always changing and some specific tips will not work in some situations. Edit: Oh yeah, and luck. Apparently, a 60% win ratio is very good.
  2. The more you play, the more flexible your strategies should be. The center row should dictate your initial strategy, middle game strategy, and end strategy. Those strategies can varie in the course of the game. Banish cards are usually good buys, but you can't solely rely on that. For example, if you have a good amount of 'draw X' cards, you can cycle through your deck quicker than someone who's taking taking turns thinning their deck while you are playing bought cards quicker. You can also use cards like 'Great-Omen Raven' early and 'Askara of Fate' early, keep all your Apprentices and try to drain the Honor pool and buy more 'Draw X' cards while your opponent is taking turns building their deck. If you get Stone Circle, it makes it even easier! It doesn't always work, but it's a fun strategy. That said, strategies always change depending on many factors. Banishing is generally a good idea, but is not always the best idea.
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