Gwent Strategy Guide | The Witcher 3

Gwent is a popular card game played by many characters in The Witcher 3. You can play it too, and with a little work, you can even earn some coin and become a well known player.
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We’ve already shown you a full list of Gwent cards, and now we’re going to talk about the best Gwent strategies.

You can also check out our new guide on Gwent Players and Merchants.


Choosing Your Faction

Every faction has interesting cards and abilities, so if you want to get a feel for things, you should play around with each a little. If you’re just looking to win, choose the Northern Realms. Their faction ability is drawing a card every time you win a round, and your strategy should focus on drawing a lot of cards.

When you get to White Orchard, buy the Foltest, Lord Commander Of The North leader card from the innkeeper. When played, it clears all weather effects from the board.

Building Your Deck

You’ll have to buy/win some cards in order to get the optimal deck, but you can patch something together even with the starting cards. Don’t pick any weather cards – they shouldn’t be a part of your tactic. Put one or two Decoy cards in the deck. You can throw in a Commander’s Horn for good measure, but you won’t need it most of the time.

Now we’re onto the unit cards. Pick those with special abilities first – Spy, Medic and Tight Bond should be the basis of your deck. Spies are placed on the enemy’s side but let you draw 2 cards – the less damage they do, the better they are. Medics allow you to draw cards from the discard pile. Units with Tight Bond have double the strength when placed in pairs.

When you get to the point where you have hero cards, you should throw them in. They aren’t essential, but will help a fair bit. Fill the rest of the slots with various 5+ strength units.

Playing The Game

You need to win two out of three rounds to win the game. Our plan relies on playing through all three rounds, so we have a different tactic for each. If you want to know more about the rules of the game, take a look at our Gwent Basics guide.


First Round

You’re going to lose this one. You don’t have to – if the opponent does something stupid that lets you win while playing only one or two cards, by all means, take the chance. But do not invest into the first round.

Your goal is to play all the spy cards in this round, starting from the weakest. If the opponent plays a spy card, be sure to use Decoy on it. At the same time, you’ll be trying to bait your opponent into playing as many cards as possible.

If you haven’t used a Decoy, play a strong card to draw out your opponent, then use the Decoy on it. You can also sacrifice some weaker, ability-free cards to bait him further, but there’s always a risk he’ll just pass.

Second Round

If your opponent made a mistake and you won the first round, you can just dump all you’ve got onto the board, use Foltest to clear any weather effects he plays to counter you, and win.

More likely, you’ve lost the first round, which means you have to win the other two. That’s no big deal – at this point, you’ll certainly have more cards than the other player. The advantage is yours. Use a Medic or two to put some free units onto the board, helping them out with a pair of Tight Bond soldiers. Play a hero or similarly strong card, making the opponent think you’re going all in.

Your goal is to make him fold, to make him think you’re willing to invest more than you actually are. If a weather effect is ruining your play, you’ll have to choose between playing Foltest and putting another unit on the board.

Third Round

Just dump everything you’ve got onto the board. If you’ve kept Foltest, play him to clear any weather effects. Provided you have two Catapults in your hand, you’ll most likely outgun anything.

And that’s it. Our strategy may not be the most elegant or fail-proof, but it’s the best you can do with the least cards. We’d love to hear about decks you’ve tested in battle and strategies you’ve found to work.

Author Ketchua profile picture
Ketchua has been writing about games for far too long. As Señor Editor, he produces words (and stuff) for Gosunoob. There are a lot of words (and stuff) there, so he's terribly busy. Especially if you need something.