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So You've Lost Your Head - A Guide

Omnipresent SBB Twitch Mod Keith shares his approach for one of the more unique heroes in the game - The Headless Horseman

Hi, I am the world's foremost expert on Headless Horseman... by virtue of the fact that I am the only expert on Headless Horseman. When I first started playing it I was convinced it had to be good despite what everyone else said. I managed to convince myself it is a playable hero (although likely still average at best.) Calling him an average hero will likely still be controversial however, as he is considered somewhere between D tier and unplayable by most. If at the end of this guide you decide to try playing him at least one additional time, I will have accomplished my goal.

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I always get kidnaps stuck in my hand

So play them.

Horseman doesn't even have a hero power after tier 3

Neither does Jack's Giant

I can't control what cards I take with my kidnaps

+1 gold

These are some of the common complaints I hear about Horseman. I also used to struggle with these questions until I discovered the secret to making this hero work:

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Turn One Kidnap

Of course saying this leads to a host of further questions regarding the efficacy of such a play, but I can distill these questions into a general underlying concern:

What if my Kidnap fails?

Rather than diagnose why humanity struggles with loss aversion, I'll lay out the major reasons why playing a kidnap on turn one is beneficial. The primary reason is: the faster you get your additional units, the less damage you will take on tier 2. The second reason is that a small downside of Horseman is you run out of handspace. Knowing this, I think it’s relatively important to play at least two kidnaps on Tier 2. On turn 2 often you will want to play an economy spell such as shrink or coin, therefore you are heavily incentivized to play your kidnaps on turn 1 and turn 3.

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Getting back to what I said about loss aversion, if your turn 1 kidnap fails, it sucks. However not playing it on turn 1 is even worse for the reasons I already outlined. As for your third kidnap, I would recommend scouting the lobby for heroes such as Merlin, Charon, Sad Drac and trying to plan to use your third kidnap against them.

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Using your excess economy, tempo and health on tier 3 you can snowball this advantage in a similar way to old Loki or current Fallen Angel does. Typically this will involve taking early XP, with Wish Upon A Star being a particularly strong line. If you fail to secure XP you can roll more aggressively than other heroes on tier 3 to find valuable triples. You can also use your excess resources such as health to take greedier lines that sacrifice tempo in favor of longer term advantage such as Poly slays. After tier 3 you will play a mostly normal game. On tier 6 It Was All A Dream is uniquely powerful as there is no downside to using it. Other benefits to playing the hero are the access to additional spell casts on tier 2 and 3, making it able to grow Wizard's Familiars and Spell Weavers for free. You will also randomly steal semi completed Cinder-Ellas, buffed Happy Little Trees or a second Blind Mouse. These are high roll situations however definitely make this hero better on average.


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The Headless Horseman

by Keith

The Headless Horseman
Been through the desert
Met a man with no head
Asked what was on his mind

Man man man man
Searching
My horse I can’t find

What a pity
It’s hopeless man

For every Manless horse
A horseless man

When we lose faith
We all go blind

Headless man
Seeks
Trying to see

If we lose horse,
Manhead
Is how we are defined

Inquired further
Asked him what he desired
Horse horse horse, man
he replied

Ahead man
A horseless headman
Behind
A headless horse

When asked its name
Said the horseman
His name
Horsehead

Man, less Horsehead
United with horse less man
Lesshorse manhead

Horseman
Manhorse
Together at last

Cant help but wonder
Somewhere still out there
A horseless manhead