Design Direction of LD Science?

So, I was sitting on DTDB (Gawd, do I love that site!) updating deck ideas now that NTB is up there.

I pulled up my old LD Science deck out of the Arsenal and…it’s basically untouched since the release of both FJ and NTB. I added the Jail to my start and 2x RMM (which have yet to really work out).

I just don’t see what Design is doing with Mad Science out of the Law Dogs outfit. Nearly all of the most recent gadgets just don’t really jive with what the faction is about.

The way I see it the faction traits of LDs tend to be:

  1. Wanted punishment/profit.
  • Cheatin’ punishment/profit.
  • Board aggression.
  • Rewarded for not cheatin’.
  • Generally high bullets and access to Stud bullet ratings.
    *There are obviously others, but I think these are the most fundamental to the faction

Now what Mad Scientists do we have?

  • Andreas Andregg: Doesn’t really fit into any of those faction traits, except for being a stud MS (though so is James Ghetty).
  • Mortimer Parsons: Fits themes #4 and #5.
  • Zoe Halbrook: Kinda fits theme #5, since Weapons generally give you better bullet ratings.
  • Drew Beaumann: Fits theme #4.

So that means themes #1, #2, and #3 don’t really appear in the line-up of LD Mad Scientists. I then have to ask myself if these themes are supported at all within the available gadgets that can be invented by LD Scientists(and better yet if they synergize with them in some way too, to keep the factions differentiated)?

  1. No existing gadget mentions the word bounty or wanted. (Well technically RMM does, but just to clarify that it is not a bounty!)
  2. No existing gadget mentions illegal draw hands or has a Cheatin’ Resolution ability.
  3. No existing gadget aids in the creation of a call out or job.

Given all of that, I just feel like there is not a clear design direction for LD science. While there are a small number of gadgets that tend to help LD more than MCC (say HWG, since LD have more natural studs and can take advantage of 6C Faster on the Draw better), overall it seems like a very unsupported sub-theme within the faction.

Compare this to for example Hucksters within Sloane Gang. They have a pretty clear archetype of aggressive hex play with Jose Morales, Maria Kingsworth, and the new Antheia Pansofia with Corporeal Twist couple with Shotguns and Soul Blast. It’s perhaps not the greatest deck in the world (though not bad, either) but it represents a much clearer vision of what Hucksters are meant to be in that outfit.

Similarly, even the burgeoning Science sub-theme in 4R seems to have more direction. After Valeria was released with the Clown Carriage we immediately saw things like the Flying Popescus and (while admittedly pretty bad) Diable en Boite. Now with NTB we see the Vitality Tonic which combos with OoN and presents 4R players with an obvious combo of Dr. Dawn/Eve Henry play to compliment Valeria (as well as possibly McCadish abuse if I’m reading a recent ruling properly). Again, this is perhaps not the strongest archetype in the world, but it present a clearer vision of what Mad Scientists are meant to be in that outfit.


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Gadgets support The Arsenal and #3 Board Aggression. Combined with #5 high Stud bullet rating should be enough to make a solid game plan. Also, you are probably still playing some of the staple Law Dogs cards that support more of the core mechanics of the faction. One can argue if this is enough to justify a subtheme that is not fully developed but I really like what this will bring to the table potentially.

I really agree that LD MS are in need of more support. Another 6 value dude would open up a lot of possibilities, so would a more specific Law Dogs gadget.
Overall, I feel like this subtheme is very close to being playable maybe missing one or two key cards. At least I would very much like to try it out some time.

EDIT: I think the asyncoil gun is a good start. I was thinking about 6 and 9 on value, gun-heavy with cheap deputies and faster on the draw. Maybe Elander Boldman oof to really lay down pressure. That’s really risky and vulnerable of course.

Question is, how do you deal with clowns and landslide?

I did not say this would make a good deck :smile: . At least not without support, although I do believe the Arsenal can be, or become capable of dealing with these match ups. But I can see this being a more fleshed out type in the future, assuming there will be something that boosts its obvious weaknesses.

I agree that 2-3 well placed and well planned cards would really make the subtheme come to life. The Sloane huckster subtheme and 4R science subtheme really only have a few cohesive cards that make them feel planned out better. LD science just feels like the Mad Scientist keyword got slapped on some LD dudes at this point.

  1. This shouldn’t be on gadgets, it should be on LD mad scientists or other dudes supporting the gadget theme. The gadgets themselves hardly have anything to do with differentiating law-abiding citizen from outlaws (unless it’s some LD-exclusive Quaterman 2.0). Rather, law dogs use gadgets to maintain the law. Some dude who is adept at utilizing gadgets and specializes in hunting down wanted dudes would be very interesting, both thematically and mechanically.
  2. Cheatin’ punishment is something that is really lacking in clubless gadget builds. You could be playing Quickdraw handgun, of course, but at the expense of some of the best gadgets available… Also, both hucksters and the blessed now have powerful skill-specific ways to punish cheatin’ that stay on the board. Definitely waiting for an anti-cheatin’ gadget.
  3. This is probably something that is most needed for a clubless Morgan gadget deck. It’s not as necessary for law dogs, as they have The Arsenal and are generally not restricted from using Kidnappin’ and Bounty Hunters.
  4. This could actually be a theme similar to Morgan clubless - a gadget that provides some powerful effect, but punishes you for cheatin’. But I guess LD theme is more “if you cheat and I don’t” theme, so maybe it should stay this way.
  5. I actually like it when mad scientists and stud shooters go hand-in-hand, but don’t intermix all that much. You’ve got dedicated MS that are draw, some stud shooters that can assemble some simple gadgets themselves, and some weapons that turn draws into studs. I think it should be enough as far as science and studs go. I wouldn’t really want to see some high-skill high-stud dude.

Overall, for the future Law Dog mad scientists i’d like to see:

  • a LD-exclusive gadget dude dedicated to hunting down wanted dudes (either having a bonus vs. them or, better yet, not being able to engage into shootouts with law-abiding citizen);
  • a startable LD stud-dude with influence who benefits from having gadgets (similar to Morgan’s Jen but not necessarily having the MS skill) and aiming to hunt down wanted dudes - or abominations?
  • a gadget with a cheatin’ punishment ability.

And an Experimental gadget that can force shootouts, but that’s for Morgan, not Law Dogs.


a LD-exclusive gadget dude dedicated to hunting down wanted dudes (either having a bonus vs. them or, better yet, not being able to engage into shootouts with law-abiding citizen);

How about someone with an ability a bit like Kevin Wainwright, only it’s move to a wanted dude’s location instead of a huckster’s. If it’s used when they’ve got a gadget attached, then it’s a way of applying pressure with The Arsenal - if they don’t react, you’ll be calling them out next action.

I would love to see Law Dogs specific gadgets. For example an electrified police baton or a magnetic weapon that pulls the guns from those filthy criminals and disarms them, turning them into a draw.

If only someone like a game designer would read this… :smile:


I really like all of these ideas. Another Agency dude (which I’m assuming Andreas is an undercover Pinkerton) that specifically targets Wanted/Abomination dudes and with something to do with science/gadgets would be great. You could almost combine the two concepts you mentioned above into something like:

Wanted and Abomination dudes cannot refuse call outs from this dude.

Shootout: Boot a Gadget Weapon attached to this dude. Do X.

Then you’d have a dude that works in non-Science decks, but becomes better in them without being just another Scientist himself.