During your turn, randomly select a card from your
opponent's hand, look at it, then return it to his hand
While this card is in play, when using any Gypsy Lover
you have in play, do not return the card drawn from your
opponent's hand until you have drawn a card for each
Gypsy Lover you have in play.
While in the Gypsy Camp, any card with the word Gypsy in
the title that is discarded from play may be placed on
top of the owner's Endurance instead.
With the introduction of two new Gypsy-related cards, now
seems like a good time to not only evaluate those cards,
but the older Gypsy Lover as well.
Game mechanics questions first, as always. Gypsy Lover's
effect does not stack. Gypsy's Curse remedies this by
not only letting you draw once per Gypsy Lover, but
assuring that you don't return any cards to their hand
until you have used drawn once for each Gypsy Lover you
Gypsy Camp targets both players. The person who is
forced to discard a Gypsy is the one who chooses whether
it does or does not go to the top of their Endurance.
So even with the boost from Arms & Tactics, of what value
is Gypsy Lover?
Well, probably not much initially. Looking at one card,
or two card, or up to six cards per turn once you've put
six Gypsy Lovers and a Gypsy's Curse in play, is probably
not of huge consequence against your opponent.
Of course, having multiple Gypsy Lovers in play without a
Gypsy's Curse is of little use, since they don't stack.
Gypsy's Curse helps to minimize this problem to some
degree, by assuring that the cards drawn due to Gypsy
Lover remain separate until all Gypsy Lovers are used.
However, even then you still only know six of the 15+
cards in their hand.
This knowledge shouldn't be underestimated: knowing
approximately one-third of their hand can be useful.
Cards such as Asgard and Pyramid can give you much
greater knowledge, however.
The problem with those cards is that they target both
players, and Pyramid is a Location. If you want to use
Pyramid reliably, typically you'll have to forego the use
of other Locations. If you use Gypsy Lover/Gypsy's
Curse, you can devote your Location resources elsewhere.
And of course, your opponent won't be looking through
Where Gypsy Lover/Gypsy's Curse shines is later in the
game, as you have (hopefully) whittled down your
opponent's Endurance. At this point, that approximately
one-thirds of his hand that you are looking at has now
become one-half, or perhaps even one hundred percent. At
the point where you have lowered him down to six Ability,
your knowledge of every card in his hand can be critical
for pulling off a win.
The antithesis of the Gypsy Lover/Gypsy's Curse
combination is Simple Mind, which will sweep the board.
If your opponent does this, there's not much you can do.
Even Gypsy Camp does you little good. It may let you
recover those lost Gypsy cards, but you are still unable
to play them.
On the other hand, if you supplement your use of these
two Gypsy cards with other Situations, and your opponent
does not use Simple Mind, it's very unlikely your
opponent will target the Gypsy cards. If nothing else,
Gypsy Lover's original reputation helps to assure that it
is perceived as a weak card, not worth targeting.
We mentioned your Location resources above. Gypsy Camp
isn't necessarily critical to your use of Gypsy Lover or
Gypsy's Curse. Indeed, against the worse Situation
remover, Simple Mind, it is of very little use
whatsoever. However, it can certainly assure that
against most other strategies, you can keep those Gypsy
This recycling of Gypsy cards does point out the main
problem with the Gypsy Lover/Gypsy's Curse strategy.
That is that it takes _time_ to build up. To be able to
get down six Gypsy Lovers, and a Gypsy's Curse, so that
you can look at six of your opponent's cards per turn,
you need to spend seven turns playing Special. Short of
cards like Desperation and Dr. Sonny Jackson, you won't
be playing any other Specials during those turns.
So who should use the Gypsy cards? Those Personas who
have other ways of looking through your hand, or gaining
knowledge of cards that are going into your hand, can
gain a somewhat greater benefit. Kane always knows at
least one card that you draw, for instance: Gypsy
Lover/Gypsy's Curse may tell him six additional cards.
However, he may also end up drawing and seeing a card
that he knew you had because it was on the top of your
Endurance last turn anyway.
Methos, due to Immortal Research, can keep fairly close
tabs on your deck using the Gypsy combo. Kalas, thanks
to Insurance/Situation, can do something similar if he
can inflict damage. The Gypsy combo also means that he
can get a somewhat better idea of when to play
Insurance/Event. Remember, once the combo is down, it
requires no further play of Specials. Kalas can look at
six cards in his opponent's hand each turn. If he
doesn't see any blocks among those six cards, it may be a
good time to play Insurance/Event, hoping that he can
inflict some damage or Ability loss.
Although we don't review it here, the Gypsy Event can be
used (and thanks to Gypsy Camp, reused) to keep tabs on
your opponent's hands potentially every turn. The
problem is that this requires you to use up your Special
slot each turn. On the other hand, while a card like
Pyramid is much more effective, with Gypsy your opponent
gains no knowledge of your hand in exchange. Still, this
may be of some use to those Personas who function well
without playing Specials.
So overall, Steve gives Gypsy Lover a _3_, Gypsy's Curse
a _4_, and Gypsy Camp a _1_. Gypsy Lover gets a strong
boost from Gypsy's Curse, and setting up the combo early
in the game can pay off with big dividends later on.
Gypsy's Curse is critical to the effectiveness of Gypsy
Lover: otherwise, don't bother including the latter.
Gypsy Camp strikes me as pretty much of a waste. It can
help with cycling discarded parts of the Gypsy
Lover/Curse combo. However, at that point you're talking
about a pretty commitment of Special playing. It can be
used to recycle Gypsy and keep tabs on your opponent's
entire hand. However, this pretty much ties up your
playing of Specials full-time.
What Our Other Raters Say:
Jeff - What's worse than a lame card? Three lame cards
that don't do a lot in combination. Gypsy Lover has
little use beyond sealed deck. Gypsy's Curse makes it a
bit better... but why would you waste two Special slots
on these? Gypsy Camp became the worst Location when the
cool Gypsy-related stuff was pulled from A&T for space
Hank - I've never thought of Gypsy Lover or Gypsy to be
particularly useful. Gypsy's Curse and Gypsy Camp are
supposed to make them more so... but I still haven't
really gotten psyched about building a deck around them.
Methos looks at your hand with an Edge, not an Event, and
taking a card at random (even holding onto it for awhile)
isn't that gross.
Alan - Abstain
Prodipto - (Gypsy Lover) While Gypsy Lover can give you a
very small amount of insight into what your opponent's
cards or strategy may be, it hardly warrants the space in
a deck. Being able to look at one (random) card in a hand
of 15, or even 10 is relatively useless. Until your
opponent's ability is down around 5 or less, Gypsy
Lover's ability is not worthwhile. And by that time, you
hardly need her help. (Gypsy's Curse) While this card
make Gypsy Lover a little more useful, it's a hard card
to put into a deck with limited space. Even with the
increase in the size of decks which will be triggered by
Arms and Tactics, I'd think very seriously before taking
space up with they Gypsy's Curse/Gypsy Lover combo.
Pyramid will accomplish some remarkably similar effects
(albeit for both players), and provide the added bonus of
being a Location. (Not that I'm an advocate of Pyramid
either). (Gypsy Camp) Well, if you're dead set on a
Gypsy strategy, you might as well put this in your deck.
Of course it can be a real hindrance if you're trying to
draw other cards, or make an Exertion. On the other
hand, it will let you keep putting your Gypsy cards in
Allen - Gypsy Lover has never gotten much play. By
itself, it simply isn't worth the deck-space or your
Special card slot for a turn. Gypsy Curse helps here
by allowing your Lovers to "stack," but IMO this still
isn't enough to make the combo worthwhile. In the
end-game the combo becomes more effective, but you've
spent lots of special cards setting up for the end-game
while your opponent has been busily _knocking_ you to the
end-game. Gypsy Camp can help the above combo, and
improves the use of Gypsy. Seeing your opponent's
_entire_ hand every turn can be quite useful. Mix this
with Upper Hand and you've got a useable strategy.
Bruce - (In general) A Gypsy deck would be an interesting
concept. I must admit that I have not tried it, but think
it would have little likelihood of being successful. The
ability to probe their hand lends itself to a variety of
strategies and Gypsy Camp's ability to leverage your
Gypsies and delay exhaustion could be very useful.
Another batch of fun and interesting but impotent cards.
(Gypsy Lover) While it can be quite a good card to have
out in the end game, especially with others and a Gypsy's
Curse, you are likely to otherwise be in a bad position
if you took the time to put these out. (Gypsy's Curse)
This certainly seems to make Gypsy Lover a far more
useful card. However, the time it takes to get out enough
Gypsy Lovers to make it really useful puts a serious
crimp on things. (Gypsy Camp) This is certainly the card
that makes Gypsies interesting. It is Location defense
that allows significant leveraging of your other Gypsies
and some degree of exhaustion protection.
Stealth Dave - Abstain
Jonathan - (Gypsy Lover) Just doesn't offer much of an
effect to warrant taking up space in a deck. Seems like
an extremely passive strategy. Better to waste a turn
playing Gypsy/Event and see their full hand. (Gypsy's
Curse) Oh boy, the Gypsies offer you a chance to do some
cycling as well! You can draw a few cards and get to see
some of your opponent's cards as well. Again, a passive
strategy that really seems to be a waste of deck space.
These Gypsy cards might be some fun in a theme deck, but
I'd be extremely surprised to see them in any serious
deck. (Gypsy Camp) Just a silly Location to play with,
unless you have no others. The number of usable and
productive cards with the word "Gypsy" in the title are
extremely few. Best use would involve use of Gypsy to
constantly look at your opponent's hand without allowing
them to see yours (as with Asgard), but that's not much
of a killer strategy. Still, it's a card you might want
to own, as you never know when a new powerful Gypsy card
Charles - Great for stall decks and for annoying an
opponent. Gypsy Lover with Gypsy's Curse is lethal when
your opponent is at an Ability equal to the number of
Lovers you have in play. I fail to see any other use for
them at this time.
Ratings Overall (Lover, Curse, Camp)
Average: 2.25 (Gypsy Lover)
2.88 (Gypsy's Curse)
3.25 (Gypsy Camp)