25 Cards which need ‘Insta-Killing’

Updated: Apr 27, 2020

In every tale of the Crucible, these suckers need to go down... fast!

Written by Carl Woodwiss

Crazy Killing Machine

Reviewed by Kate Dunstone

For those of us who have been playing KeyForge for a while, we have all been struck with that feeling when a card hits the board and you know it is going to do some damage because there is nothing you can do about it. It’s horrible! This is a list of the cards which invoke that feeling!

These are creatures which, in my personal opinion, need to leave your opponent's board as quickly as they turn up. If not, things could go very poorly for you, very quickly.

Now, I know there will be some cards left off this list where you will think I am nuts for not including them, however I have tried to keep this to cards which, no matter the situation, will instantly put you in a bad place. So I have left out cards like:

  • Aember Imp/Pip Pip/Sir Marrows

  • Teliga

  • Key Imps

  • Edie

  • Senator Shrix

  • Symon

  • Leaders

Yes, these things need to be dealt with, however it is only in certain situations in which they need to be dealt with immediately:

  • Aember Imp/Pip Pip/Sir Marrows if you want to do lots of reaping.

  • Teliga if you have a hand full of creatures.

  • Key Imps if you……..want to forge a key.

  • Edie if your opponent has a huge archive or multiple Edies.

  • Senator Shrix if it is loaded up with Aember.

  • Symon if you are playing Saurians.

  • Leaders when they are in the centre of the battleline.

The rest of the time, you could probably deal with them for a turn or 2… however the 25 cards which follow… burn them with fire!

25. Succubus

Lower on the list than some may expect, and some may not expect it to be on the list at all. A card game where you draw 16.7% less cards than your opponent? Naaaaa...

24. Quant

As the card pool deepens, and some of the ridiculously powerful and potential game changing action cards there are out there now (Tribute, Red Alert, Stealth Mode), Quant's power has increased SIGNIFICANTLY.

23. Witch of the Wilds

You only have 1 Untamed card in your hand? It would change the game, but you have nothing to back it up with? Not as strong as some of the other witches (spoiler) however definitely worthy of note!

22. Mother/Daughter

See Succubus but add 16.7%. I think that is how the math works.

21. Senator Bracchus

I was hesitant with this card and in Sealed I would probably leave it off the list. It does need those capture/exalt heavy cards. However, if the deck has them and you know it, some of the nonsense Saurians are capable of, Senator Bracchus needs to go.

20. Fidgit

This might not seem as powerful at first glance, however discarding cards out of archives or from the top of the deck is bad enough, then playing it as if it was yours if it is an action? That makes it great. Oh, and it's Elusive? Too good of a support card to stay on the board.

19. Psychic Bug

You can see my hand? Wait... you can see my hand EVERY TURN!?

18. Bulleteye

You can get an Aember and kill a creature? Wait... you get an Aember and kill a creature EVERY TURN!?

17. Tocsin


ain, this might split the audience, but I don't like letting you gain an Aember and ruin my next turn.

16. Tezmal

We all know how clutch Control the Weak plays can be. Build something that is almost Control the Weak into a reap effect?

15. The Grey Rider

The combo possibilities with The Grey Rider are Saurian-esque! If someone has played him poorly, he could probably stay out for a turn or 2. Played well, The Grey Rider can break hearts.

14. Faygin

Steal/Reap/Steal/Repeat... Steal/Reap/Steal/Repeat.

13. Babbling Bibliophile

An Aember and 2 cards? See Succubus and Mother....then go wild!

12. Shaffles

You've spent all that time getting to enough Aember to forge a key, just to let some little Imp pain-in-the-backside eat just enough to stop you forging? Shame on you! (I assume he eats it... why not?)

11. Sci. Officer Morpheus

Just missing out on the top 10, Sci. Officer Morpheus has been up and down in this list more than any other card. The power of being able to trigger a play effect multiple times currently is very, very, VERY good. This will only become stronger... watch this space.

I'm going to get to the point soon where I probably don't need to explain my thinking... but humor me!

Top 10

10. Professor Sutterkin

Oh that's a good card. Wait, it DOESN'T say each friendly READY creature?! Worldly!

9. Uxlyx the Zookeeper

Doesn't care how big your creature is, doesn't care if your creature is hazardous, just... doesn't care! And a free Aember on top. Personally, one of my absolute favourite cards.

8. Helmsman Spears

Don't like your hand? Not a problem. 'Nuff said?

7. "John Smyth"

"John Smyth"... just loves using and abusing his fellow Martians. With Squawkers or Soft Landings in tow, a "John Smyth" or 2 can ruin games and break hearts. Much like Library Access, just sit back and let it all happen.

6. Philophosaurus

Eyegor: "I'm powerful."

Lay of the Land: "Me too!"

Philophosaurus: "Hold my beer..."

5. Hunting Witch

Possibly the OG (original gangster) OP (over-powered) creature. We have all played against the Full Moon/Hunting Witch deck. If you haven't, you are in for a treat... one day.

4. Witch of the Eye