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To sacrifice or not

Sacrificing cards is a very important part of playing and winning a game of Crayne. Having an early plan to get rid of a few trade carts will greatly increase your chances of victory. In most games this is achieved with a few mercenaries, good planning and a little bit of luck.

In some games, however, you'll have access to an accelerated form of sacrificing cards. If you are dealt one (or even two) cultists in your starting cards it can be very tempting to start sacrificing trade carts straight off the bat and thinning out that deck! Is this a mistake?

You might be surprised, but sacrificing trade carts in the first 2-3 rounds of Crayne can put you at an early disadvantage where recovery is very difficult. This is particularly the case if you didn't get very good purchase options in your first two rounds. Unless you get really lucky and manage to purchase a very powerful 6 or 7 cost card (maybe using a Mischievous Imp) and aim at rushing your opponents down into the ground (I've seen this done using a Colossal Golem), you are going to find it very difficult to purchase any cards because you'll likely not have any discard pile for discounts.

Even sacrificing just one card in the first round means your deck will not big enough to even have a discard pile until you purchase at least two cards for your deck. If you continue to sacrifice a card every time you use the Cultist, then you may be forever playing catch up just to have enough cards in your deck to have a discard pile; making only smaller purchases that you can afford with your dwindling supply of trade carts. This is increasingly true if you have more than one card where you can sacrifice other cards such as the succubus and the Pit Lord.

For some contrast, there can be a great benefit in fluffing up your deck initially in order to have 10+ cards in your discard for the revenue phase, then trimming your deck down quickly later on when you have a few big purchases (or many of the same faction for synergy).

Winning at Crayne requires a fluid strategy that should include a plan for trimming down your deck. The ability to sacrifice cards early on is very powerful, but only if executed in a way that shows restraint. Don't be that player who shoots themselves in the foot by having a deck that is no longer able to purchase mid-game and becomes completely irrelevant as an opponent.

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