How to Play Iron Lad in Marvel Snap
Welcome to another installment in our series where we cover new card releases and how to use them. Series 5 is continuing to add cards to the game, and this week we have Iron Lad.
Iron Lad is starting off the month very hot as his ability is very powerful, and his base stats are also very competitive for his cost.
On top of that, Iron Lad will likely fit into a multitude of different decks. There’s a lot to cover, so let’s get right into the guide.
Iron Lad Effect
On Reveal: Copy the text of your deck’s top card.
- Colorist – Ryan Kinnaird
- Artist – Eduardo Mello
Iron Lad Synergy
Iron Lad’s effect makes it so that you simply want cards with powerful text abilities. Imagine hitting a Doctor Doom for 4 Energy for 16 Power. Or perhaps you copy an Ongoing ability like Devil Dinosaur or Iron Man.
I honestly believe that Iron Lad might shape the meta game until the big hitters like High Evolutionary and Living Tribunal come out.
As previously mentioned, there’s a ton of synergies that can work with Iron Lad, but I’ll go over the first ones that come to mind.
Howard the Duck
Ongoing: Tap this to see the top card of your deck.
This synergy is very clear. If you’re able to see the top card of your deck, you can make plays with Iron Lad with perfect information. A 1/2 stat line isn’t amazing, but in a deck that potentially uses the Ongoing synergy, Spectrum can turn Howard into a 1/4, and Iron Lad copying Spectrum turns that into 1/6.
Howard the Duck will be releasing the week after Iron Lad. Until then, we’ll be seeing Iron Lad in decks without this synergy, and he likely will make a big splash anyway.
Darkhawk: Ongoing: +2 Power for each card in your opponent’s deck.
Another synergy that comes to mind is Darkhawk. Darkhawk decks run a core of 4-cost cards along with Rock generators like Korg and Rockslide. Iron Lad can definitely slot right into the 4-cost slot, but the competition is quite fierce already.
It will be difficult replacing cards like Shang-Chi or Enchantress, and definitely not Rockslide, but maybe one of the 3 or 5-cost cards can be cut for Iron Lad.
Either way, Darkhawk decks don’t have the most insane card abilities, but being able to slam a 4/6 body on top of a beneficial effect is definitely a strong play.
On Reveal: Wong / Odin / etc
Wong: Ongoing: Your On Reveal abilities at this location happen twice.
Another deck archetype that’s been slowly rising back up again is the On Reveal deck. Cards like Cosmo are still in the meta, but not as prevalent as before. Since the Shuri and Thanos nerfs, we’ve seen the playing field level out more, and On Reveal is starting to compete again.
Iron Lad in an On Reveal deck basically ensures that you’re getting some value out of his ability. You can copy Wong to essentially make a Wong with 6 Power. You can copy Doctor Doom, White Tiger, Scorpion, Wolfsbane, Iceman, and the list goes on.
While you may not get a huge play every time, you’re bound to get some value, while the lucky hits will get you upwards of 10 Power on 4 cost.
Ongoing: Spectrum / Iron Man / etc
Spectrum: On Reveal: Give your Ongoing cards +2 Power.
I touched on this briefly with Howard the Duck, but Iron Lad may bring back Ongoing as well. With a bit more support, Ongoing can definitely start pushing enough Power to compete with the meta decks (although Enchantress being in every deck hurts).
Heavy Ongoing decks will have a ton of great cards to copy text from like Iron Man, Spectrum, Klaw, Professor X, the list goes on. Howard the Duck also is an Ongoing, making it a nice and easy fit into the deck.
Starts on the bottom of your deck. Draw this on turn 6.
Last but not least, we have the queen of consistency, America Chavez. America was recently reworked so that she is always on the bottom of your deck until you draw her on turn 6. This synergizes just a little bit with Iron Lad. If there are a few specific cards you want to hit with Iron Lad, America Chavez helps you do that by a small percentage. She effectively “thins” the deck by reducing the possible hits on top of your deck by 1.
In most games, this won’t really matter, but over the course of a lot of games, the small percentage bump can make a difference. For decks that have a lot of good hits, America Chavez isn’t super necessary. She could simply be another card with good text.
Even still, for decks that already run America Chavez for consistency, adding Iron Lad in won’t hurt as you’ll never hit America Chavez’ text off his ability.
Iron Lad Decks
For this section, I’ll be mainly going over some decks that synergize with Iron Lad.
Keep in mind that these decks are all first impressions, so things can definitely change rapidly. As new discoveries are made with Iron Lad, I will be updating our Full Tier List, rather than update this article.
Be sure to check it out to see what the best decks are, or if Iron Lad is even in the best decks at all.
Stature Darkhawk Iron Lad Deck
This first deck simply places Iron Lad into one of the best decks in the current meta. While the deck doesn’t look to capitalize on Iron Lad, he still is simply a strong play as there are lots of powerful things you can copy.
I covered the Darkhawk synergy already, and this deck makes use of that. Copying something like Black Bolt, Nightcrawler, Shang-Chi, or Enchantress can also be very strong. Just be careful about the possibility of Enchantress on your own cards like Darkhawk.
Ongoing Iron Lad
This deck is a slight variation of the old Ongoing Destroyer deck. However, I would rather not accidentally have Iron Lad copy Destroyer’s ability, so this version uses Invisible Woman and Ebony Maw to gain some power. The rest of the deck plays fairly straight forward. Simply play the highest cost card in your hand for the most part.
While Iron Lad is a nice addition to the archetype, I personally think that the deck will need a bit more help until it can compete with the other meta decks.
On Reveal Iron Lad
This version of On Reveal swaps out White Tiger for Iron Lad. While White Tiger can be great, it can also be inconsistent or too reliant on also having Odin. In this deck, Iron Lad will almost always get some type of value, whether it’s copying Wong, Scorpion, Iceman, or even Doctor Doom.
If you’re keeping good track of the rest of your deck, you can also make some hail mary plays on turn 6 based on Iron Lad copying the exact card text you needed.
Dino Iron Lad
This Dino deck simply replaces the usual White Queen with Iron Lad instead. This may not be the ideal replacement or even deck, but it’s an easy substitute. They have the same statline, and both will likely provide some beneficial effect.
While Dino has definitely fallen off in the meta, it’s a very accessible deck that can easily be upgraded with new Series 5 cards to spice it up.
Good Stuff Iron Lad
Lastly, I have a simple “Good Stuff” Iron Lad deck. This deck simply looks to leverage strong cards to play on curve. Since the nerfs to Aero and Leader, this deck has largely fallen off, but maybe it might spark a comeback.
The gameplan is quite simple. Get ahead on board, play Leech, and hopefully win on turn 6. Almost all of the cards in the deck have strong text for Iron Lad to copy, and the straight forward nature will make this deck easy to pilot.
Iron Lad Counters
Fortunately for Iron Lad, he isn’t a card that is very targetable by counters. By nature, he is able to flexibly be added to a lot of decks, so there is no one true counter for Iron Lad.
The main thing to keep in mind is that if you play Iron Lad, you are giving your opponent information about the top card of your deck. This can be valuable information that can lead to a snap, or possibly retreating depending on the situation.
Ongoing: On Reveal abilities won’t happen at this location.
Cosmo is technically a counter to Iron Lad because he will stop his On Reveal ability, but in practice, this may not pan out. Iron Lad is a 4-cost, meaning they can simply play Iron Lad wherever Cosmo isn’t. You may be able to predict where he’s played on Turn 4, but that also requires you to have priority.
All in all, Iron Lad is a very powerful card, and he can fit in a multitude of decks. While he is very flexible, he doesn’t necessarily fit into every archetype, such as Destroy or Discard, where you need to manage your negative effects.
Even still, I imagine there will be a ton of decks that can include Iron Lad, and he may even become a staple card in the meta.
Hope this guide helped you out a bit, good luck in your games, and snap away!
Be sure to check out our Tier Lists for out current rankings on Marvel Snap decks and cards.
If you haven’t yet, be sure to check out our other resources for Marvel Snap. These can help you wherever you are in the Collection Track.
- Best Decks Tier List
- Series 1 Tier List
- Series 2 Tier List
- Series 3 Tier List
- Series 4/5 Tier List
- Series 3 Only Deck Tier List
Good luck in your games, and thanks for reading!