Boxing with Knives | HC 1K Series

Card draw simulator

Odds: 0% – 0% – 0% more
Derived from
None. Self-made deck here.
Inspiration for
Lily Chen Small But Spicy 0 0 0 1.0

HungryColquhoun · 2852

Boxing with Knives


I'm continuing my series with new decks every Sunday and using the new Hemlock Vale cards. This uses Occult Reliquary to enable Boxing Gloves with Blessed Blade, adding and drawing Spirit events frequently with kills...


Campaign starter and planned progression

With In the Thick of It this a 30 XP deck (I'd advise two physical trauma). For the starter deck you can include Wolf Mask or Glory over One-Two Punch if you like, but generally I found an extra Fight target for Boxing Gloves to be far better. Your starting Discipline is Alignment of Spirit. 0 XP deck is as follows (and link here):


A recommended order of purchases/upgrades for remaining cards is:

Final thoughts

This deck was really, really good. If you're wondering whether the juice is worth the squeeze for so many high XP upgrades so early - yes, yes it is. It definitely helps that the campaign starter deck is solid, so you don't feel put out while waiting for XP for key assets. It is easy to get both Blessed Blade •••• and Boxing Gloves into to play when you have Stick to the Plan, and from there it worked exactly as intended: adding to the bag (typically with 4 or 5 tokens left at the end of a scenario) and fishing out Spirit events. Getting Discipline - Balance of Body early-to-mid campaign really takes this to the next level, letting you completely demolish bosses. Having Alignment of Spirit as your first Discipline is however very sensible, as this deck clue-finds well enough from scenario 1 (and it's great healing!).

You might be thinking why isn't this a Nate deck? For me: (a) with Blessed Blade and Boxing Gloves he can't really clue find (no Hyperphysical Shotcaster); (b) I really want Blessing of Isis on a Nate deck for event recursion, which makes it too expensive in terms of XP with the main combo here (Ancestral Token without this combo is better); and (c) even ignoring Blessing of Isis, given the early sunk cost of XP for this tech it's hard to get the high XP events which make Nate feel worth it. As a last point it's also tricky to make Nate outdamage the five actions you get in a turn with Balance of Body, and damage is what you want Guardians to do!

I think this is more or less the only combo I would recommend with Blessed Blade and Occult Reliquary, given it's quite XP intensive. For me what you're pairing it with has to be two-handed (otherwise just run the one-hander with the Blade without Reliquary), and it can't just be another +X damage weapon as the damage from the Blade is already good. There's very little that meets that narrow criteria, fortunately Boxing Gloves fits it to a tee! Anyway, hope you like the deck - it's definitely one of my favorites from this series so far. What do you see as the best uses of Occult Reliquary in general?


Mar 26, 2024 Drostt · 26

I just noticed, you did not use any ally! :0 Are there any options here? What motivates such choice?

Mar 26, 2024 HungryColquhoun · 2852

@Drostt There's always stuff like Beat Cop you can use (or Brother Xavier even, etc.). This deck has robust healing and soak with Holy Rosary, so I didn't see the need personally (especially as you get stat boosts from the Disciplines, Rosary and Boxing Gloves - the latter while fighting). A slimmed down set of assets means you have less to play and can do more to win a scenario (more important here with the events focus of the deck). It's also good to not include allies arbitrarily especially with their typically high resource cost.

Mar 27, 2024 chrome · 52

In respect of allies. Early on, Acolyte can be your additioal source of deck-thinning, horror soak and card draw engine in general. Later on, Michael Leigh can be a nice luxiary upgrade, as you are doing both clueing and fighting.

Mar 27, 2024 HungryColquhoun · 2852

Honestly, I don't think the deck needs them. I use allies for (a) soak if healing isn't adequate, (b) stat boosts, and (c) for an ability I can't get anywhere else. As mentioned above, (a) and (b) this deck has and when considering (c) the extra damage on Beat Cop isn't something this deck needs - as the recruitment of events already gives damage compression (and the cost of the Beat Cop is resources you could be using the play events). Beat Cop would be the only ally I would consider for this personally, as Blessed Blade •••• doesn't release easily for Nephthys and other allies don't have much synergy (e.g. Field Agent who boosts ). Then again, Beat Cop needs support to stay alive and get the most out of your XP investment.

For Michael Leigh he's absurdly costly in terms of XP (I would rather just upgrade into One-Two Punch •••••, and in fact I did do as Hemlock Vale was richer in XP than I thought). I only ever use Michael where I want to be investigating with and killing things with (which is usually just Joe). Even more deck thinning with Acolyte I don't think is worth it - Boxing Gloves does enough as it is. You could include Acolyte in the starter deck and upgrade out of it, but I like everything else in the deck better - all the events are very useful.

If you think the opportunity cost of an ally is worth it, then by all means fill your boots though! Discipline - Alignment of Spirit does such a good job of healing and flips back to unbroken often (and has zero opportunity cost) that for me it was very much surplus to requirement.

Mar 28, 2024 chrome · 52

Yes, I understand that it it is a common prejudice that an ally slot is the strongest therefore it is a waste not to include anything there, while it is not the truth for every given case. And again, one can create a deck meaning some particular campaigns in mind where they can include a story ally and go with them exclusively. I've just suggested the allies for those who love playing through allies but at no point I meant that these allies will make this deck work better.

Mar 28, 2024 HungryColquhoun · 2852

@chrome Thanks, understood! As you say I think there can be a bit of bias towards certain ways of playing which give tunnel vision sometimes. I definitely do see a bit of "X is missing, so this is sub-optimal" on many different people's decks - sometimes it's warranted, but equally a lot of the time it's not.