If you’re playing The Witcher 3 Wild Hunt, you’ve probably run into some annoying merchants that want to suck you out of the immersive yet somehow still-open world experience with a couple of hands of Gwent, a lightweight mini-game that can take even more of your time. It’s fun and easy, and there are a number of associated and incredibly lucrative questlines, so if you want to get started with Gwent there’s an easy way to do so.
Before you even start hammering on the quest chain (conveniently located in your quest log under secondary quests), you’re going to want to pick up Northern Realms Siegemaster as your general from the innkeeper in White Orchard. This will make life a lot easier, because weather cards require thinking and planning, and we’d like to eliminate that from our strategy whenever possible, yeah? Siegemaster can double the value of your siege row and will win you quite a few rounds.
Get started on the Gwent questline as soon as you can to start collecting rare cards that will tip the scales in your favor. You should also plan to play every merchant you come across, but keep in mind you’re only going to get a card drop from them for the first victory. You can sit around farming coins and crafting mats forever, but honestly it’s mostly a waste to beat folks more than once.
If you’re having trouble, note that spies are the overpowered goodness that will take you from a Machop tier player to a Machamp.
Just keep throwing spies at your opponent’s board until they capitulate and pass, while you hoard a stocked hand – there’s no normal draw phase in Gwent which means card advantage is a serious thing. When you play those opponents who just love to swarm monsters in the front row and horn to create 100+ power abominations, just smile and keep drawing – you’ll win the next two rounds. Decoy cards are especially useful in this respect, so when your opponent throws a spy your way you can pick it up and turn it right back at them!
If your goal is to catch em all and become the very best, there’s an awesome Gwent tournament in the game that has some hefty rewards (and a substantial entry fee!). Just keep throwing decoys and spies around and you should be a pro in no time.