Root Mega-deck

This game is a beaut. Have four expansions to it. 🙂

I played Root 8-10 times in a ten day period. I got my fill, for sure.

Partway through, we changed the deck. We combined the original deck and the Exiles and Partisans deck together. Why?

For one, because there’s a lot of hostile feelings towards the “Favor” cards, which vastly favors the factions that craft later in their turns and are IMMENSELY powerful. It can end games on a sour note. “Well if you didn’t have that card…” Those are prickly conversations that lead to grimaces.

For two, because we can. I wanted to take the game apart a bit and see what I could find. Hadn’t done a full look at the deck.

Here were my goals:

  • Cards of each suit being equal.
  • Balance the crafting symbols as best as possible.
  • Lower the overall cost of cards to make them more accessible.
  • Have each card be unique. Thought that’d be fun.

In tearing the original deck apart, I had some interesting finds:

SuitTotal #Mouse SymbolFox SymbolRabbit SymbolWild SymbolOne of Each Symbol
* # of Tax Collector cards
  1. There are 54 cards, which means the four suits aren’t equal. There is an additional Fox and Bird card… Odd.
  2. Fox symbols for crafting are much less common than the others (18 Foxes, 24 Mouse, 25 Rabbit). Fox clearings are worth much less…
  3. There are three copies of Tax Collector, which doesn’t get used very often.
  4. There are one of each ambush card, but two Bird ambushes. I like that, even though it goes against the “have each card be unique.”

Now, I don’t mind things not being TOTALLY balanced. The quirks can make for interesting choices. But let’s see if we can make more interesting choices. So here’s what I did:

  1. Added the Partisans deck
  2. Removed all duplicate cards (but kept two copies of Bird-suited Ambush)
  3. Removed all Favor cards.
  4. Removed “Soup Kitchens” and “Lords of the Forest” (to lower the number of Bird cards, these are my least favorite of the bunch.)

And the results…

SuitTotal #Mouse SymbolFox SymbolRabbit SymbolWild SymbolOne of Each Symbol
* # of Tax Collector cards


  • No more Favor-fueled victories.
  • Slightly increases card count.
  • Evens the suits (y’know, what you’d expect them to be).
  • Doesn’t screw with Item Crafting or Ambush card balance.
  • Crafting symbols are made more even (but still a little quirky).
  • Lower craft cost overall –> Cats get buffed (which we all know they sorely need).


Oh, and you need card sleeves for this. The card backs don’t match. I got a nice turquoise set of Dragon Shields (which are, unfortunately, slightly see-though. Ah well).

If you wanna throw in two Bird cards as “Jokers” you could add another Saboteur and then either Soup Kitchens or Lords of the Forest.

I’ll get back to RPGs soon…

2 thoughts on “Root Mega-deck

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