What are the best Marvel Snap decks? December 2023 is here and it has brought Sebastian Shaw into the fray, an interesting card that can quickly gain lots of power if left unchecked, and while he isn’t quite meta-defining or one of the best cards in the game, he does slot immediately into one of the best decks in Marvel Snap.
The Marvel Snap meta is constantly changing but whether you’re a well-travelled veteran well into series four or five, you’re still unlocking some deck staples in series three, or you’re still in the early days getting to grips with how all the cards interact with one another in one of the best card games on PC, we’re here to help. We have a list of all the best decks in the Marvel Snap meta at the moment, followed by the best beginner decks for all you newbies.
Best Marvel Snap meta decks
For the most part, the best meta decks in Marvel Snap require you to have completed Series 3 and have a significant chunk of Series 4 and Series 5 cards. This is because your options for different deck archetypes open up enormously once you reach this stage, although if you don’t have any cards in the best decks below, we will include some potential substitutes when explaining how the deck works. Here are the best decks in Marvel Snap in December 2023 in no particular order:
As always, the brand new season pass card is a powerful unit, because there wouldn’t be as many people clamoring to buy the season pass if the card with it wasn’t very good. It’s still early days in the current meta, which means the exact decklists are still being ironed out, but one archetype Sebastian Shaw fits into neatly is Silver Surfer. It feels like every patch sees a new potential addition to Surfer decklists thanks to more and more three-cost cards, but with Sebastian Shaw, and lots of power-buffing cards alongside, this is a top quality deck.
At the time of writing we’re less than a day into the new season and I have already climbed from 73 to 93 with this list. If you’re missing any of the cards in this list, you can replace them with most other three-cost cards or any cards that permanently buff power such as the reworked America Chavez.
- Mister Sinister
- Elsa Bloodstone
- Silver Surfer
- Sebastian Shaw
Decks that are built to infuriate your opponent – or you, if you’re facing off against one – often rely on flooding their board so they’re limited in where they can play, then reducing their power with Hazmat. However, with the introduction of Annihilus last season, sending your opponent low-power cards can now be combined with the Darkhawk archetype, which fills their decks with rocks and stops them from drawing cards.
This deck personally got me to infinite last season, along with some very strong Conquest runs. Thanks to the Alioth rework, you need to ensure you have priority going into turn six if possible, and if you’re missing any cards, replacing them with Green Goblin or Hobgoblin is a surefire bet. Zabu, Darkhawk, and Sentry are important though.
- The Hood
- Black Widow
- Shadow King
- Rock Slide
- Iron Lad
Cerebro is one of those mainstay cards in the Marvel Snap meta that will never be the very best deck in the game, but consistently produces good results. Cerebro-2 and Cerebro-3 are the most popular archetypes for the card, but Cerebro-5 is the best performer in the current meta. It’s a fairly simple deck to play, as you just need to get as many cards down as you can by turn six, ensure Cerebro is on the board, then drop Doctor Doom.
Do be careful to play cards in the correct locations though – Medusa and Ms Marvel should both be played in the middle for example, and ensure you don’t have cards of the same cost in the same left and right locations so Ms Marvel’s ability definitely activates. Substitutions are pretty much any card with five power – I enjoy Titania or Omega Red – or you can throw Mystique in, though she isn’t as essential as she is in C2 and C3.
- Luke Cage
- Miles Morales
- Ms Marvel
- Doctor Doom
The aim of the game with a lockdown deck is to, well, lock down locations so your opponent can’t play there, but so you can still add power if necessary. Professor X is the main lockdown card in the game but with only three power for five energy, you need to ensure you have enough power in his lane before throwing him down.
Typically, you’ll only want to contest two lanes, perhaps putting a little power into the third to lure your opponent into thinking you’ll be playing there. Alternate cards to use include Juggernaut to play immediately after Storm, Gamora if you know where your opponent will play, or Alioth if you can consistently get priority.
- Ms Marvel
- Iron Lad
- Professor X
- Doctor Doom
Destroy is one of the most common archetypes in Marvel Snap, and it has a lot of potential cards to include. The best Destroy version right now focuses on buffing Deadpool as much as possible, playing and destroying it pretty much every single turn.
Your plan should be to buff Deadpool with Forge or Hulk Buster ahead of the first or second destroy, then keep playing cards to destroy it until turn six when you can either drop it alongside a fully discounted Death, or leave it on the board on turn five and play Knull on six, who should be rather powerful by this point. There aren’t many cards you can switch out here, but any other destroy cards are your best bet, such as Bucky Barnes, Shang-Chi, Yondu, or Gladiator.
- Hulk Buster
High Evolutionary is one of the most frustrating cards to play against in the game, and when it was launched, it felt like every other match-up was against the ability-granting baddie. However, the card has dropped down the performance rankings lately, and only the best High Evolutionary decklist remains.
This deck can output immense power thanks to She-Hulk, Hulk, and Infinaut, while also infuriating your opponent thanks to Cosmo, Cyclops, and Leech. Misty Knight will always find a way to buff the exact card you need to win a lane by one power at the end of turn six too… your main way to play should aim to be on curve all the way through with Hulk going down to win a lane on turn six, or if you play Magik, skip turn six and play both She-Hulk and The Infinaut on turn seven (with a huge Sunspot buff coming the turn prior). Most cards here are essential, but you could replace Jeff with another tech card such as Luke Cage, Rogue, or Enchantress.
- Misty Knight
- High Evolutionary
Marvel Snap veterans will remember the days of Shuri dominance and while she is nowhere near as powerful as she once was, she is still a solid deck that has a very obvious win condition and is straightforward to play as a result. The recent America Chavez nerf means your draw consistency is hurt a little, but there are plenty of cards that can replace her – in this case, Attuma slots in nicely – as long as you play him behind Armor. Sentry, Maximus, Arnim Zola, and even Aero can now do the job after her buff to nine power. You can also swap out Echo for any of the above if you don’t have her.
Your win condition is to play Shuri, followed by Red Skull, then Taskmaster, on turns four through six. However, if you’ve got Sauron down earlier, you can also play Ebony Maw on the final turn, or you can replace Red Skull with Attuma, Typhoid Mary, or Vision on turn five.
- Ebony Maw
- Typhoid Mary
- Red Skull
Bounce decks have undergone some revisions lately thanks to the additions of Nico Minoru and Werewolf By Night to the game, although it’s a difficult deck to learn how to play. At all times, you’ll have multiple options available to you in terms of which cards to play. Do you bounce The Hood back to your hand multiple times with Falcon and Beast for multiple cheap Demons? Do you focus on sending Werewolf By Night to lots of different locations, raising his power as much as possible? Do you rely on Darkhawk to win a single lane?
There are a lot of potential hurdles to your game plan too, such as your opponent dropping Alioth on the final turn if you save all your cheap cards for a big finale, or lanes being locked with cards such as Professor X or Storm. Ultimately, Werewolf By Night is the MVP here, and along with Falcon and Beast, you can replace most cards in the list with cheap on reveals. You can also go all-in on the bouncing and get rid of Korg, Rock Slide, and Darkhawk if necessary.
- The Hood
- Nico Minoru
- Black Widow
- Shadow King
- Rock Slide
- Werewolf By Night
Finally, we have another destroy archetype, which uses lots of the same core cards as the Deadpool Destroy deck mentioned above, but has a slightly different win condition. Rather than building up Deadpool from the start, you ideally want to play any three of X-23, Yondu, Wolverine, Bucky Barnes, and Magik on the same lane, then take them out with Carnage or Venom.
If you don’t draw and play Magik ahead of turn six, make sure you have a method of destroying X-23 on turn four, so you can play Knull on turn five. If you play Knull on an empty location – and you’ve destroyed enough cards through the game so far – you can play Arnim Zola on Knull and spread two copies of him to the rest of the board, all while he doubles his own power. A backup plan can be to play Arnim on a powerful Venom, or Death if that isn’t possible. This means X-23, Magik, Arnim Zola, and Knull are essential for this deck, but you can play around with the other destroy cards. This is one of the only archetypes where Gladiator is viable, or you absolutely can put Deadpool or Deathlok in if you’d rather.
- Bucky Barnes
- Arnim Zola
Best Marvel Snap beginner decks
These beginner Marvel Snap decks exclusively use cards that you start the game with and those in Pool 1, which is from collection levels 18-214 in the card game. There are 71 cards to choose from with these parameters, and if there are any you’re missing in your chosen decklist, you’re early enough in the game that replacing a few of them won’t ruin the playstyle of the deck too much. Check out our Marvel Snap tier list to learn which cards in Pool 1 are the outright best.
For this Pool 1 deck, it focuses mainly on On-Reveal abilities, which are effects that happen as soon as you play the card. Once again, Odin is the star of the show, while Gamora and Ironheart are vital inclusions also.
- Star Lord
- White Queen
- White Tiger
On the flipside of the On-Reveal deck, this Ongoing decklist focuses on effects that are constantly happening when that card is in play. Blue Marvel and Spectrum share the spotlight, or if you’re lucky enough to get extra energy or the Limbo location which grants a turn seven, you can get both in play at once.
- Mister Fantastic
- Captain America
- Blue Marvel
- Devil Dinosaur
If you fancy playing something based on some of the characters featured within Marvel Snap, take a look at our list of the best superhero games, which isn’t limited to just Marvel heroes. Alternatively, check out our list of the best multiplayer games if you want to take on opponents online in a different environment, or other free Steam games, for more wallet-friendly ways to spend your free time.