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Old 03-20-2016, 12:18 PM
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Kalir Kalir is offline
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Default Sentinels of the Multiverse: True heroes throw knives into traffic.

So this game is pretty fun. It's a co-op card game about a team of superheroes fighting the supervillain of the day. Each character has their own deck, villains and heroes alike, and they handle kind of like taking on an MMO raid boss. There's also an environment deck, because comic book superheroes never fight in a bland 20x20 room.

I'm making this thread for two reasons: to see if there's enough people interested in (or that own) the Steam version of the game and who want people to play with, and if interest is high enough, for me to do rundowns of the decks for the heroes. Y'know, give people an idea for what to expect when they pick up not-Superman or whatever.

Haka best hero though.

Hero Writeups:
Villain Write-Ups:
Vengeance Mode WriteUps:
Environment Write Ups:

Last edited by Kalir; 06-02-2017 at 11:52 AM.
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Old 03-20-2016, 12:27 PM
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Do it.

(Fixer true best hero that isn't Guise)
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Old 03-20-2016, 01:18 PM
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Yussss
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Old 03-20-2016, 02:51 PM
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The strategy guides linked off the fan wiki are usually pretty good.

I love this game a lot. I especially love the setting an art. Has anyone here not heard about the tabletop RPG?
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Old 03-20-2016, 08:31 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Egarwaen View Post
The strategy guides linked off the fan wiki are usually pretty good.

I love this game a lot. I especially love the setting an art. Has anyone here not heard about the tabletop RPG?
I haven't! Unless by RPG you mean card game. Care to elaborate?
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Old 03-20-2016, 10:06 PM
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Legacy

Checklist
  • Reliable Damage: Yes (Motivational Charge)
  • Ongoing/Environment Destruction: No
  • Team Support Abilities: Yes (base power, Lead From The Front, Inspiring Presence, Motivational Charge, Bolster Allies, Heroic Interception)
  • Big-Ass Attack Option: No
  • Deck Control: Yes (Take Down)

Of course we're going to start with not-Superman. Legacy is the flagship character of Sentinels of the Multiverse, but a common mistake I find a lot of people expecting when they pick him up is that he'll be able to do loads of damage. I mean, he CAN, but that's not his best usage. Like Superman, Legacy is at his best when he's helping his teammates, and he is very, very good at this job.

Strengths:
  • Offensive support: Legacy's base power, Galvanize, is one of the best base powers in the game. Especially among base set heroes, base powers of "deal something damage" are very common, and any attacker worth their salt, once set up, will deal damage with their card play and their power use. Galvanize amps up every instance of damage heroes deal until Legacy's next turn, which assuming your teammates are regularly throwing damage, adds up quick, and he has more where that came from. And while Legacy himself doesn't do a lot of damage, he DOES have enough one-shots that pack a kick that if the situation calls for it, he CAN do damage.
  • Tanking: Even aside from having some of the highest health in the game, Legacy packs a lot of cards that mitigate damage, not just for himself, but for other heroes as well. Legacy has more than one way to guarantee everyone else is safe from damage, and between Fortitude, Danger Sense, or Superhuman Durability, it's hard to bring down Legacy either with chip damage or meaty hits. Oh, and did we mention Legacy can also heal his teammates? Not very quickly, but with him reducing how much punishment the team takes as a whole, even a little bit of healing goes a long way.

Weaknesses:
  • Ongoing Dependency: He's not really a setup-intensive character like many other heroes, but Legacy relies a lot on having lots of ongoing cards out that make him better at his job. Anything that destroys hero ongoing cards en masse is bad news for Legacy, doubly so if it also deals damage and he's caught with his pants down after losing all his stuff.
  • Backlash Potential: Oh man, so many hero damage boosts! Wait what do you mean I have to deal myself damage? NO I'M NOT OKAY WITH FIGHTING PLAGUE RAT. The potential here isn't as bad as with Nightmist or Chrono-Ranger, but you still want to be careful about your teammates doing self-damage if Legacy's around.

Notable Cards
  • Inspiring Presence: It's your base power! Except constant! And it also stacks with Galvanize! YES EVERY HERO DAMAGE INSTANCE NEEDS A +2 MODIFIER OF COURSE THEY DO.
  • Lead From The Front: Redirecting damage in Sentinels is usually an avenue for cheating as hard as you possibly can. Optional redirects are even better (hi Stealth Bot). Ongoing optional redirects to one of the most survivable characters in the game are insane.
  • The Legacy Ring: Legacy doesn't have that many other cards that grant him extra powers, so getting an extra power use each turn isn't that exciting at first. But Galvanize is so good that it's hard to imagine a turn where you wouldn't want to use it, so his ring ends up being an essential piece of kit to keep your team happy while also letting you do more tangible things. Plus, it's equipment instead of an ongoing card, so it dies to a completely different set of keywords.

Variant Strategies:
As you might know, each of the hero characters in the game has access to variant hero cards, used to represent that same hero at a different point in their story (or a different character taking the mantle of that hero, as is the case with Legacy's variants). Since all this changes is their max HP, base power, and incap powers, I'm not going to go over each one as thoroughly as I might a villain variant. I will, however, indicate how they handle differently from their vanilla mode.

America's Newest Legacy
Also known as Young Legacy, Felicia Pauline Parsons is a great indicator of what to expect from a lot of variants. The first thing any variant has to do is weigh their new base power (and health totals) against the original. While classic America's Finest Legacy has an extremely powerful Galvanize ability, it loses a bit of its edge if you don't have a team equipped to make the most of the damage boosts, or if self-damage is a constant threat. Young Legacy, with her exceptionally beefy Atomic Glare, drops the damage support mantle in favor of being an excellent fighter herself. Once she gets Motivational Charge, the Legacy Ring and her own damage boosters out, she'll provide enough offense to ride with the big dogs, no problem. That said, she has the lowest health total of the Legacies, and so won't be nearly as good at tanking (although she can still do so in a pinch).

America's Greatest Legacy
On the other end of things, Grandpa Legacy, who fought in World War II, drops a lot of the offense support in favor of being an incredibly durable tank. Gung-Ho lets him use the other two powers in his deck freely while also providing him some regeneration, OR you can use it on another teammate to keep them alive and slinging the best power they can bring to the table. Combined with another reliable support character like Tempest or the Argent Adept, Grandpa Legacy is generally considered one of the most blatantly overpowered characters in the game, able to keep entire teams standing where anyone else would have died ages ago. Again, though, this (in theory) comes with the downside that your team will not be hitting as hard as they would be with any other Legacy variant on the team. But again, Gung-Ho is basically "what is the best power our team has? I wanna use that." You could totally do things like double down on Grievous Hail Storm, Mr. Fixer's Strikes, Compound Bow, Extrasensory Awareness, and so on.

Last edited by Kalir; 07-23-2017 at 11:24 AM.
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Old 03-27-2016, 06:03 PM
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Today I got to play a pretty interesting game of sentinels. We fought Omnitron on Omnitron IV. I played as Omnitron X and was joined by Guise and Sky-Scraper. Omnitron X has some fun interactions with his past iterations. The card Self-Sabotage has you destroy component cards in order to deal damage. Normally this is used to sacrifice your board state to deal damage, but in this instance the card will also apply to Omnitron's component cards as well as the component cards in the Omnitron IV environment deck! It came in handy a couple of times to clear out some of Omnitron's nastier components.
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Old 03-28-2016, 11:54 AM
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See when I did the Three-Omnitron Ante I just died. Turns out the environment and the villain cooperate really damn hard in that one!

Fanatic

Checklist
  • Reliable Damage: Yes (base power, Absolution)
  • Ongoing/Environment Destruction: Yes (Consecrated Ground, End Of Days)
  • Team Support Abilities: Yes (Embolden, Holy Nova, Divine Sacrifice, Chastise, Zealous Offense)
  • Big-Ass Attack Option: Yes (Wrathful Retribution, Divine Focus, End of Days)
  • Deck Control: No

Tachyon takes the prize for best integration of flavor and mechanics, but Fanatic is no slouch either. Fanatic waits for a miracle in the same way you or I might wait for the bus. She's not the easiest in the world to pick up, especially for those who lack faith (or confidence whatever) but if you know what you're doing, you can blaze through opponents so quickly they won't know what hit them.

Strengths:
  • Strong Immediate Effects: Whether it's oneshots or ongoings that require an effect to sustain, Fanatic hits the battlefield like a bolt of lightning. Drawing up to 6 cards, wiping the field, getting the attention of exactly the enemies you need to draw away from fragile teammates, granting teammates extra power uses... there's no shortage of options for Fanatic to change up the game.
  • Survivability: While Fanatic's defense is technically nonexistent, she can take a lot of punishment where others can't in a number of ways. All of her gear is Relics, which is a keyword that specifically dodges effects like End of Days that would otherwise clear the field. This lets her walk through (or engineer) stuff like that without a care in the world. Oh, and she has the Aegis of Resurrection as one of these relics, which does exactly what you think it does.

Weaknesses:
  • High Card Cost: Most of her cards tend to have an additional cost besides just playing the card to keep them useful. Ongoing cards often have some kind of sustain cost, and Wrathful Retribution, which can kill the hell out of things, requires you to discard 3 cards to get it out of your hand at all. Because of all of this, Fanatic is one of the characters most likely to skip her card play.
  • Damage Boost Dependent: Fanatic does a lot of damage, but the bulk of that damage is split over several small hits. Even a single point of defense on an ordinary enemy represents a massive obstacle for her. Worse yet, she has no damage boosting cards in her deck and precious few that give her alternate attacks. You'll want someone on her team that can help her deal more damage per attack, Legacy being the obvious choice.

Notable Cards
  • End Of Days: The nuclear option. When everything has just gone to hell and you don't have a good way out of what you see except to just raze it all to the ground and salt the earth, End Of Days kills the field, guaranteed. Your Relics stay in play, but your other stuff (and your teammates' stuff, of course) doesn't, so use only as a last resort.
  • Wrathful Retribution: If you're playing Fanatic as you SHOULD be, you'll be self-damaging yourself left and right. Your goal in doing so is to have enough cards in hand to drop a Wrathful Retribution at just the right time (with an Aegis of Resurrection in play, of course). My friend playing this game for the first time managed to get herself down to 3 health and basically instantly clown Baron Blade's second form.
  • Divine Focus: One important rule here that a lot of players miss their first time is that Divine Focus lets you discard at the start of EVERY turn. So when Fanatic's turn ends and we move on to Unity? Discard again. Environment turn right after? Discard. Villain turn? Discard. If you have a hand full of cards you don't want to play (because you're playing Fanatic) Divine Focus is an excellent way to turn them all into a very useful source of damage. Played right, you can basically ignore the sustain cost.

Variant Strategies:
Redeemer Fanatic
Sure, Haka and Ra's variants notice that they lack their basic attack power when they're played, but Fanatic's deck only has the one reliable attack power in it (Sacrosanct Martyr does not count) and her oneshots do very little damage unless the stars align. Redeem makes her incredibly tanky and gives her enough card draw to sift through most of her deck (and fuel Divine Focus), but you cannot depend on Redeemer Fanatic to be a consistent attacker in the same way you can count on regular Fanatic. Instead, play to defend your team, relying on your constant stream of healing, ability to revive, and Divine Sacrifice to keep the focus off of your teammates and on you.

Prime Wardens Fanatic
I've compared Fanatic to Setback before, or rather, I've compared Setback to Fanatic for his wildly inconsistent and occasionally harmful deck. Prime Wardens Fanatic really goes hogwild with this, though. Remember, you don't always want the top card of your deck played (and especially not if you have to take 3 damage to do it)! Aside from that, Resolute is still a strong power for the same reason Grandpa Legacy is ridiculously good: you can either use the best power you have on your team, or synergize with your own cards for extra powers. Sacrosanct Martyr, in particular, can use this for pretty strong spike damage, since it uses all radiant damage you've taken during the turn to calculate how hard it hits!

Xtreme Prime Wardens Fanatic
In a vacuum, this is a weaker card than the normal one, if only because Kill The Spirit deals less damage than usual unless fueled by other damage effects. But that's the kicker: there are a LOT of potential damage sources Fanatic can get. Divine Focus is the obvious one, but the uses of this power are pretty incredible: alternate it with Sacrosanct Martyr for 1 damage on one turn and 5 the next, redirect forced self-damage from villains like Miss Information or Plague Rat, and so forth.

Last edited by Kalir; 10-05-2017 at 12:39 AM.
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Old 03-29-2016, 12:55 PM
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Played a game with Trar and Epithet last night against the Dreamer in Silver Gulch and we accidentally speedran the boss. Matthew Hayes finished off the last projection and flipped her early, but our party was something dumb like Chrono-Ranger, Expatriette, and Bunker so we didn't have ongoings to destroy. Speaking of...

Bunker

Checklist
  • Reliable Damage: Yes (Flak Cannon, Grenade Launcher)
  • Ongoing/Environment Destruction: No
  • Team Support Abilities: No
  • Big-Ass Attack Option: Yes (Omni-Cannon, Turret Mode, External Combustion)
  • Deck Control: Yes (Adhesive Foam Grenade)

If you've already learned the game by familiarizing yourself with Haka, Bunker is a natural step to learn next. He takes a bit more technical setup work to get up and running, but once you know how to handle him he can put out a surprising amount of damage or take a ridiculous amount of punishment.

Bunker's signature keyword is his Mode cards, three mutually-exclusive Ongoings. Depending on his mode, he might get some stat changes and the ability to double down on one of playing a card, using a power, or drawing a card, at the expense of losing his other options there. Learning when to use each of his modes, or no mode at all, is very important.

Strengths:
  • Card Draw And Efficiency: Bunker can get cards in his hand just as effectively as Haka can, but he's got even more ways to use them than Haka does, ways that don't require him playing a one-shot to use. Which means you can supplement his firepower even when locked out of playing new cards via Turret Mode. And speaking of firepower...
  • Firepower: Haka has Bunker beat for toughness, but Bunker is the clear winner for hitting dudes harder. Sure, his powers granted by cards are slightly weaker, but Turret Mode granting an extra power use and a damage boost (which applies to Gatling Gun's start of turn auto-attack!) lets him put forth a constant stream of damage. Or you can play defensive and charge up the Omni-Cannon for attack values that have Tachyon looking for alternative work options.

Weaknesses:
  • Self-Limiting: The only reason Bunker can get away with having cards in his deck that let him double up on card plays, powers, or draws is by ensuring that they're all VERY mutually exclusive. Once fully set up, the Wraith can match Bunker for damage, and she doesn't sacrifice her card play or draw to do it.
  • Slow Start: Bunker's base power, Initialize, lets him draw a card. You'd think with a power like that, he'd be pretty resistant to being screwed over by his deck, but he needs quite a few things for any given setup, and he needs them in a specific order (even outside of the ideal Mode cycle of Recharge --> Upgrade --> Turret). More than anyone else, Bunker needs to know when to cut his losses and actually play the game, lest he miss out on doing anything whatsoever even if his team wins. It's not whether you win or lose, but whether you have fun doing it, y'know?

Notable Cards
  • Recharge Mode: If you get Heavy Plating out before this, Recharge Mode grants you 2 defense against every attack in the game, which is already really good. But it gets better: if you skip your card play and power use on your turn, voluntarily or not, you get to draw two cards. (Never mind that the Visionary and Nightmist both have a better version of this card.)
  • Upgrade Mode: Commonly viewed as Bunker's weakest mode, I personally think it's much stronger than it appears at first glance. Upgrade Mode should always be played one turn before you think you'll need it, and it can still throw oneshots like Decommissioned Hardware or External Combustion juuust fine. Plus, this lets Bunker get back in the game after having lots of his stuff trashed, and if you wanna get really cheeky, use your last card play to switch instantly to Turret Mode.
  • Ammo Drop: The stipulation on Ammo Drop saying it bypasses Mode restrictions isn't very important given that it only works on Turret Mode... but you REALLY want Ammo Drop out before you throw Turret Mode. Assuming you kill one target (or an ally takes down an ongoing) each turn, that reloads your Gatling Gun for that turn. And if you're not doing Turret Mode, this helps charge the Omni-Cannon even faster.

Variant Strategies:
G.I. Bunker
Fittingly for Bunker, each of his variant cards is mostly intended to be used to fit the situation at hand. For example, the Panzer-Buster really only excels if you're fighting a deck with lots of damage reducers: if they don't have any, you can't do anything about it. What's nice here is that this is one of the only ways to reliably obtain irreducible damage in the game, and that it applies for every attack dealt to the target until Bunker's next turn. It's effectively a better Riveting Crane, or a more reliable Reveal the Flaws. Really solid choice.

Freedom Six Bunker
Meanwhile, Fright Train gets his shot at being a hero by providing Bunker with a method of ongoing destruction as a base power. While it does require you to discard a Mode card, that's hardly an expensive cost since you still have pretty respectable card draw. Also, I dunno if you noticed, but this lets you destroy ongoings as a BASE POWER, which means that you can even handle stuff like Hour of Reckoning with ease. Freedom Six Bunker definitely skews towards the higher end of the Freedom Six abilities.

Termi-Nation Bunker
At first glance, the Modulize power seems like what it sounds like: you can turn cards you no longer need into extra resources, making it great for fights when you might need to get back on your feet quickly after a gearwipe. And, to an extent, it is. I find this variant REALLY shines, though, after Bunker is all the way set up. Check it: in Turret Mode, destroy an Auxiliary Power Source at the start of your turn. Use your first two powers to, say, fire the Flak Cannon and Grenade Launcher, then use Modulize to trash Turret Mode and effectively take another turn. I don't know if playing a second Turret Mode as part of this would grant you a FOURTH power use, but the fact that you can even get that close says a lot about the potential here.

Last edited by Kalir; 07-26-2017 at 09:24 PM.
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Old 03-30-2016, 09:37 AM
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The Visionary

Checklist
  • Reliable Damage: No
  • Ongoing/Environment Destruction: Yes (Mental Divergence)
  • Team Support Abilities: Yes (base power, Mass Levitation, Mental Divergence, Twist the Ether, Wrest the Mind)
  • Big-Ass Attack Option: No
  • Deck Control: Yes (Precognition, Prophetic Vision, Suggestion, Brain Burn)

Did you make a mill deck in Magic: the Gathering? Do you just hate random chance to high hell? Are you okay with not being able to hit things? Congrats, the Visionary is for you. Turns out in a game where the future is more or less set but veiled, designing a psychic character is just a matter of fiddling with the deck.

Strengths:
  • Deck Control: Sure, lots of heroes can block decks from playing cards or look at cards in a deck, but the Visionary is who you REALLY turn to when you want that deck stacked in your favor. She has plenty of one-shots that let her look at the cards on top of a deck or put cards from the trash on top of a deck. Against villains with some lone dangerous cards in a sea of nothing, like Kismet, Omnitron or Ambuscade, the Visionary is better than an entire team of armed-to-the-teeth murderhobos.
  • Team Support: Fixing the deck isn't all she does, though. Mental Divergence is one of the best powers in the game, letting you destroy ongoing cards with a glance OR recover hero ongoings that have been destroyed. And then you have Twist the Ether, which in conjunction with heroes that care about damage type (Legacy, Ra, Absolute Zero) lets you cheat to phenomenal levels.

Weaknesses:
  • Negligible Offense: The Visionary has exactly one card that hits dudes and isn't a one-shot, and it's Demoralization, a start-of-turn spray for 1 psychic. Everything else is her one-shots that deal a bit of psychic damage, and when compared to most other fighters' decks, they're some pretty weak instances of damage. Honestly, I'd usually throw those away and let your teammates that actually intend to do damage cover for you, and work on just supporting them.
  • One-Shot Dependent: If the Visionary could rearrange the decks literally every turn with a power, that'd be completely hilarious. (She CAN arrange her own deck and let teammates draw cards, but that's about it.) Most of the time you'll be relying on your one-shots and sustained ongoings to contribute. The good news is that you don't have much setup you need to do as a result, but you're no Tachyon.

Notable Cards
  • Mental Divergence: Destroying an ongoing card as a power is completely ridiculous on its own. But one commonly-overlooked feature of Mental Divergence is its ability to restore hero ongoing cards. It doesn't do so very quickly, it'll be a few turns before that card sees play again unless boosted via shenanigans, but pulling a key card from the trash, especially when that hero has no backup copies and no trash-search, is pretty good.
  • Wrest the Mind: The backlash on this card is pretty scary, but that's what your Telekinetic Cocoon is for. Throw this on something big, beefy, and murderous, like Char or one of Grand Warlord Voss' ships, cocoon up, and go on a joyride killing everything you can see.
  • Brain Burn: You can't pull that same nonsense against Brain Burn's backlash cost. Which is just as well, since against most villains you don't care about Brain Burn at all. But there are some villains who either have ways to make use of their trash (The Chairman being one notable example) or are Baron Blade. Against these villains, Brain Burn is either worth the cost or good enough that you may want to ask a teammate to assist you with mitigating the damage. (This is easier said than done, outside of Heroic Interception there's not many ways for teammates to block self-inflicted damage on other teammates.)

Variant Strategies:
Dark Visionary
Oh, remember how I said the Visionary having rearranging the villain deck as a power would be ridiculously good? (This was before I knew that Parse had Extrasensory Awareness.) Anyway, Dark Visionary's base power is a deck control power, about on par with the Infrared Eyepiece. Which is really good, because deck control as a base power is really good. Don't forget that this means you have less ability to sift through ally decks and get certain allies the cards they need faster, though. The nice part is that this means you have less pressure to use Precognition to keep the villain deck in check, and also that you can literally filter through the villain deck every turn. The bad news is that this competes with your other powers, which the Visionary does really like having around.


Also I need to decide: am I also going to run through villains and/or environments here? If not, after AZ I'll just move on to the Rook City expansion and Unity.

Last edited by Kalir; 07-27-2017 at 10:53 AM.
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Old 03-30-2016, 10:21 AM
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I'd vote "yes, but run through the expansion heroes first."
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Old 03-30-2016, 10:27 AM
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I'd say yes - there's lots of hero guides floating around, but precious few guides to villains or environments that are any good
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Old 03-31-2016, 11:22 AM
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I'll move on to villain/environment for base set, then. Main tiebreaker for me is that I legit don't have all the cards for this game on me. I gained more from buying the steam version than I did with picking up promos a month or so ago (only thing I currently have that Steam doesn't is Omnitron IV).

Absolute Zero

Checklist
  • Reliable Damage: No
  • Ongoing/Environment Destruction: Yes (Fueled Freeze)
  • Team Support Abilities: No
  • Big-Ass Attack Option: Yes (Thermal Shockwave, Cryo Chamber, Coolant Blast)
  • Deck Control: Yes (Sub-Zero Atmosphere)

Absolute Zero is the only hero in the base set that clocks in at difficulty 3, but he's not really a hard character to get the hang of, honestly. The difficulty from playing him more comes from the fact that he needs some very specific tools to get going. If he has them, great, he's awesome, but if not, you're looking at a blank slot on your team inflating the value of H. (Also, for a good sad time, read his backstory in full.)

The main thing to understand about him is his Module cards. Null-Point Calibration Unit and Isothermic Transducer are essential to his playstyle. In SMT terms, this gives him Drain Cold and Repel Fire (in the latter case he still takes the actual damage). Most villains don't traffic in these damage types much, but Absolute Zero can deal himself these damage types very easily.

Strengths:
  • Self-Healing: There's two main ways to play Absolute Zero, and the first and most straightforward is to rely on his Null-Point Calibration Unit's ability to turn cold damage into healing. With that, Focused Apertures, and a Cryo Chamber, his base power can self-heal for 3 every turn, which is more than enough to keep Absolute Zero ahead of the pack in terms of highest HP.
  • All-Out Damage: When you use the Cryo Chamber's power to destroy it, it deals Absolute Zero 5 (which is actually 4 because of it) fire damage. Most of his one-shots and his Thermal Shockwave power deal himself damage as well. With the Isothermic Transducer in play, you can basically milk each of these instances for another shot of cold damage, either directed at your unfortunate enemies or at yourself for an emergency self-heal. And the damage boosts he has, either from Focused Apertures or another source, ramp up each instance of reflection from the Isothermic Transducer too. Absolute Zero can put out scary levels of damage at the cost of his own life.

Weaknesses:
  • Extreme Deck Dependence: Absolute Zero doesn't have a power in his DECK that lets him do damage without first taking damage in some way. He has 4 copies of both of his modules, his deck search card Onboard Module Installation, and his trash search card Modular Realignment, and Glacial Structure lets him draw 3 cards, and in some games that's STILL not enough, and he just doesn't do anything useful for the whole game.
  • Damage Modifier Dependent: Most heroes would accept a damage reduction effect on themselves without thinking twice. For Absolute Zero, lowering the damage he takes limits his ability to self-heal or reflect. And while increasing the damage he takes lets him cheat even harder with self-healing, that sort of thing can backfire in a hurry.

Notable Cards
  • Modular Realignment: Onboard Module Installation is only about as good as Summon Staff but for modules. Modular Realignment, on the other hand, looks through the trash for any equipment, which is already really good, but it also deals Absolute Zero 1 damage each of fire and cold. For maximum stupid, use this to bounce a Cryo Chamber in and out of play!
  • Sub-Zero Atmosphere: One of the few cards that gives Absolute Zero a way to do things to the field without relying on damage types. It effectively shunts the attack most minions do as they enter play to the next turn, giving you a free turn to whale on them without repercussion. Be very careful around villain decks with powerful start-of-turn attacking minions or villains with a chance to play cards at the end of their turn somehow.
  • Coolant Blast: This is a hard one to work with, but worth investigating. The safest way to utilize it is via Frost-Bound Drain, which shoots one target for 3 cold and Absolute Zero for 3 fire as a one-shot. Chase that with a 3 damage cold attack, easy peasy. But if you have a teammate with easy access to multi-target fire damage (Ra, Mr. Fixer) you can use this to ridiculous means. I mean, if you really want a giant attack, you can do that without depending on other heroes, but Absolute Zero with teammates shooting him and Coolant Blast ready gets pretty damn scary.

Variant Strategies:
Freedom Six Absolute Zero
Really nice that the first Absolute Zero variant managed to address the problem most people have when playing Absolute Zero: namely, that he has to damage himself all the time to do things, making him very unreliable. Elemental Wrath solves that problem quite handily, just giving him a basic 2 damage attack like everyone else. It's good for playing AZ with training wheels, but someone who's experienced at playing Absolute Zero will start to really miss the inability to capitalize on self-damage. Also worth noting: out of all the variants, only vanilla Absolute Zero can really capitalize on the Null-Point Calibration Unit very easily. Most variants should probably prioritize the Isothermic Transducer instead.

Termi-Nation Absolute Zero
On the complete other end of the scale, you have Termi-Nation Absolute Zero, who is ONLY INTENDED FOR PROFESSIONAL USAGE. Don't get me wrong, they are stupidly strong if you know what you are doing, but they'll have to rely on skipping their play/power and drawing two more than any other variant, AND you'll need good prediction or protection from your team to avoid getting killed by Violent Shivers. Once you've got yourself set up, though... well, remember that Coolant Blast example up top? Let's do some extra addition: Frost-Bound Drain now deals 5 damage to an opponent and 7 damage to AZ, which in turn deals either 9 damage to an opponent or lets AZ heal for 11 (making any fire damage you redirect at yourself a heal for 4). And then you can use a Coolant Blast for another 9. TERRIFYING.

Last edited by Kalir; 07-27-2017 at 11:02 AM.
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  #14  
Old 04-02-2016, 09:24 AM
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Villain decks, go!

Baron Blade

Danger Levels
  • Minions: Middling
  • Direct Offense: Low
  • Disruption: Low
  • Defenses: High
  • Ongoings: Middling
  • Deck Randomness: Middling
  • Nemesis: Legacy

Even outside of Lex Luthor being a clear nemesis to Superman, it's hard to find a more villainous archetype from the comics era than the mad scientist, so it goes without saying that the core game has Baron Blade right there as the first difficulty 1 villain. And honestly, his deck is probably one of the best designed in the game for that purpose. Baron Blade will spend much of his time doing nothing but building his plans, slowly enough to give you time to prepare, but quickly enough to get new heroes to mobilize into actually doing things.

TerraLunar Impulsion Beam Inventor
Baron Blade's initial side doesn't honestly do much of anything. The game gives him a target that extends his health total in ways, and an alternate win condition that just tells the heroes not to dick around, but honestly Baron Blade's first side is just there to provide a nice attractive target for the heroes, and to teach them that while tempting targets do pop up (basically all of his minions represent a pretty decent threat) you should still sling damage at the main villain regularly.

Advanced: Every villain has an "advanced" mode for an optional, much harder, and not exactly balanced version of the fight. Baron Blade suddenly turns from a Rancho Relaxo into someone who is speedrunning Majora's Mask with the intent to lose. You need to pile on an insane amount of damage in a VERY short amount of time.

Vengeful Mad Scientist
Only once you flip to his other side does Baron Blade actively fight the heroes, which is a shame because depending on your heroes (even in the base set, Tachyon, Bunker and Fanatic can all easily do this) they might just put out enough damage that he doesn't get a turn. And even outside of this, Baron Blade only attacks the highest HP hero (albeit for H damage, which is a lot as-is).

Advanced: Reducing damage he takes by 1 isn't much (although it can stack with his Living Force Field). The real danger is having him actively fighting you way earlier than you might be ready for it, especially if you've left minions alive as is entirely possible here. A 30 health foe that reduces damage by 1 and swings for H is still a decent threat.

Challenge - Decoy Impulsion Beam: Oh hey, new stuff. Challenge mode is basically another layer on top of Advanced for extra pain, but one not usually contingent on the flip condition for the villain. In Baron Blade's case, the instant loss condition from the first side remains through the second. On its own, this still isn't too bad since he waits for Vengeful Mad Scientist to fight you, but it's still pressure to finish faster. Ultimate Mode, by the way, is Challenge and Advanced at the same time. Good luck loser, I've told you everything I can to help there.

Good Strategies:
  • Hitting Him Really Hard: Without any source of direct attack, Baron Blade is wholly reliant on minions and one-shots to harm you, so there will be several turns where nobody takes damage from villains. So hey, all the more reason to go as recklessly offensive as you can field. This also lets you keep his minions in check as they come out. Sure, Blade Battalion and Powered Remote Turret hit as hard as the Ruins of Atlantis, but they also die after one or two turns.
  • Building Up Finishers: You'd be surprised at how quickly some characters can get their gear set up when not pressured. I had a dude thinking Bunker was one of the best heroes in the game the other day against Grand Warlord Voss. ("Okay, and then I draw 7 cards.") But for real, Baron Blade provides a very convenient checkpoint for you to say "kay now we start clowning him", which is a very valuable lesson to learn.

Bad Strategies:
  • Turtling: As the esteemed Dr. Patrick McNinja would put it: A doy. Even outside of the risk of GAME OVER MAJORA END, Baron Blade simply doesn't put out enough damage to warrant gearing up with defensive options or putting your entire array in play. Which is another good thing to teach newbie players. Have I mentioned I really like how well-designed Baron Blade's deck is?
  • Building Your Character: This one bears mention for a second time for one main reason, and that reason is Devious Disruption (this will see mention in the next section). But again, this is here to teach players that no, it's okay, you won't get your entire rig set up against villains most of the time, and that's okay. Take what you can get and use it well, and that'll be what you win with.

Notable Cards
  • Hasten Doom: Just like with hero decks, anything that gives the villain another card play is really good... for them. "Consider the price of victory!", Devious Disruption, and Slash And Burn are all pretty scary, but they're even more so as chasers to a 2 damage spray at everyone.
  • Devious Disruption: The only reason this card gets away with existing in a difficulty 1 villain deck (and still actually earning that title, OMNITRON) is because it's a soft disruption card. You don't have to destroy anything if you really want to (say, if he was Throat Jabbed or Hypersonic Assaulted)! And against Baron Blade, who knows, maybe your team can afford to leave everything in. It has to be the team's call whether their money or their life is more worth it, because honestly, against Baron Blade, you can afford to lose either.
  • Living Force Field: Hello, lesson about ongoing cards. Many villains will have ongoing cards out that you simply can't afford to leave out there, which necessitates having and hanging onto ongoing destruction cards (THIS IS LIKE HALF THE REASON THE VISIONARY IS SO GOOD). Living Force Field is elegant in its simplicity: you deal less damage to Baron Blade. Deal with it. Some heroes can afford to just punch right through anyway, while others (Chrono-Ranger and Fanatic come to mind) suddenly have an actual problem on their hands.

Variant Strategies:

Mad Bomber Blade

Danger Levels
  • Minions: None
  • Direct Offense: High
  • Disruption: Middling
  • Defenses: Low
  • Ongoings: High
  • Deck Randomness: Middling
  • Nemesis: Legacy

This is all basically Mogri's writing here. Offered to do a write-up of this version of Baron Blade for me, so here we are. I'm only adding a few things here or there, but most of this is him.

Baron Blade is Baby's First Villain. How do you take the easiest villain deck in the game and turn it into something threatening? Mad Bomber Blade is the answer to that question. The easiest villain in the game is now difficulty 3. This doesn't turn him into the game's most threatening villain, but it is a pretty clever repurposing of the flagship villain's forgettable mechanics.

Mad Bomber Blade separates the wheat from the chaff, so to speak: anytime he would play a villain target (read: something with HP), it gets thrown out and another card gets played instead. Oh, and he gets stronger every time that happens. The result: just one-shots and ongoings and pain.

Mad Bomber
"Baron Blade's initial side doesn't honestly do much of anything," Kalir says of the original villain. Not so with Mad Bomber Blade: he's functionally little different from one side to the next. Both sides deal damage to every hero target for each of those targets he's skipped playing. (Kalir also says that he doesn't start with a Mobile Defense Platform, which is VERY NICE.)

Advanced: Mad Bomber's damage accelerates. It's not flashy, but it gets the job done.

Maniacal Death Ray Wielder
The flow of the fight is very similar to Baron Blade: killing the first side flips him. Whereas Baron Blade's first form is basically "insert setup here," Mad Bomber Blade more or less resets the board on flip. The upshot is that unless you kill him really quickly, say goodbye to your setup. The only good news is that Blade's damage is also reset. Where Baron Blade's health is 40/30, though, Mad Bomber Blade's is 30/40, so if you're half-dead going into this phase, you'd better step up your game.

Advanced: Blade gets an extra card play, effectively doubling his damage acceleration on top of the already-threatening extra action. This is much worse for you than it would be for the average villain.

Challenge - Nanobot Power Armor: Mad Bomber Blade gets 2 damage resistance in both phases, on top of what he might already have from Living Force Field. That's pretty bad on its own, but this is one battle you don't want to drag on, so again, this is much more dangerous on Mad Bomber Blade than it would be for the average villain.

Good Strategies:
  • Hitting Him Really Hard: This tip hasn't changed from Baron Blade, but the motivation behind it has: the longer the game lasts, the more damage Blade is dealing to your entire side of the field every turn. Besides, as mentioned, if you manage to kill the first phase really quickly, there's a good chance you won't have to wipe your entire board.
  • Damage Immunity: Because Mad Bomber Blade is the only villain target that will ever show up in this match, you can shut him down completely with any sort of damage immunity plus Twist the Ether. If you're not fielding Visionary, then you can still shut down the doom clock if you can find a way to be immune to fire (Mad Bomber) and energy (Maniacal Death Ray Wielder) damage.

Bad Strategies:
  • Anything that Wouldn't Work Against Normal Baron Blade: Baron Blade's relatively benign countdown to doom is one thing, but Mad Bomber Blade is actively killing you more each turn. This is a damage race, and it doesn't stop on the other side, it just changes to picking you off one by one (and has a higher cap).
  • Minion Dependence: Unity is basically useless against Mad Bomber Blade: her bots won't last two rounds. Likewise, any hero that wants to put more targets into play will be similarly disappointed. Something something this guy can legitimately start his turn with an 11 damage spray every turn if you let him.

Notable Cards
  • Blade Battalion, Elemental Redistributor, Mobile Defense Platform, Powered Remote Turret: The targets that were mere annoyances in Baron Blade's deck have been eliminated. 11 of the 25 cards in Blade's deck are going straight towards boosting the damage he deals to all hero targets each turn.
  • Hasten Doom: Of the remaining 14 cards, four of those give Mad Bomber Blade another card play. And an area attack on top of it that's not fire-typed, so Ra can't just laugh it off.
  • Flesh-Repair Nanites: There's a single copy of this in the deck, and it's notable for being basically the only card that you'll really be glad to see Mad Bomber Blade play. Healing for 10 is really awful, but if it ever sees play, you haven't been dealing damage and it's the least of your worries, or you're dealing enough damage that it's not the make-or-break difference.

Last edited by Kalir; 06-26-2017 at 09:22 AM.
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  #15  
Old 04-03-2016, 10:39 AM
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Omnitron

Danger Levels
  • Minions: Middling
  • Direct Offense: Middling
  • Disruption: Middling
  • Defenses: Low
  • Ongoings: Middling
  • Deck Randomness: High
  • Nemesis: Omnitron-X

Omnitron is billed as the other difficulty 1 villain, something you could easily tackle after learning the basics of the vanilla game. Unfortunately, that's really not remotely true. Omnitron has one of the swingiest decks in the game: sometimes it does nothing but pop out inoffensive minions and components that die instantly. Sometimes it wipes the field.

Omnitron's unique mechanic is its Component cards, a specific class of Ongoing card. These devices afford Omnitron some very powerful direct attacks at the start of its turn (or in the case of the Interpolation Beam, whenever a hero draws a card) but break if the heroes can deal enough damage before its next turn. This is really not hard to do, and I'm sure the intent was for this to be a central mechanic and part of the threat as per Baron Blade, but Omnitron has way better ways of winning.

Self-Aware Robotics Factory
Most of the time, Omnitron's flipping mechanic doesn't actually mean a whole lot. Either way, it's still going to be playing two cards every turn, which is bad on any deck, but in Omnitron's deck just provides even more opportunity for the deck to be stacked in exactly the wrong way. This side doesn't get bonus plays of anything dangerous, mind you, but still, two cards a turn.

Advanced: The every-turn flip gets a little more interactive on Advanced mode, where Omnitron and all its minions get a stat boost depending on the side. You ideally want to match the offensive on this side, breaking components and drones before they get the damage boost.

Rampaging Robot
The other side is more or less the same as the first side. The only difference is that the robotics factory side revives certain cards from the trash, while the rampaging side just plays two cards. So I'd personally rate this side as the more dangerous of the two. Even if drones can work together, they usually don't live long enough to do so.

Advanced: Turns out that when Omnitron takes less damage, it's harder to deal it damage [citation needed]. Which means components are more likely to do things, and drones are more likely to build up and actually team up. If you don't have a good way of dealing with that defense boost, use this side to try to build up for when Omnitron flips.

Challenge - Redundant Systems: Oh hey, Omnitron only breaks one component per 7 damage now. That's... okay, kind of annoying? You might actually consider bringing a bit of extra ongoing-destruction just to clean up the really painful ones, and damage reduction effects aimed at Omnitron become more valuable. This goes double in Ultimate mode, where Omnitron also cycles between defense boosting and raw damage.

Good Strategies:
  • Deck Control: A single Infrared Eyepiece is worth more than all the DPS in the world against Omnitron. The fastest way of handling Electro-Pulse Explosives, Technological Singularities, and Sedative Flechettes is simply to not have them in play, ever. This doesn't just apply to Omnitron, either: it's a good idea to keep the environment deck from spiraling out of control, lest Terraforming pops up and gives Omnitron even MORE card plays.
  • Minimal Setup: You won't really need to go for the giant killing blows against Omnitron. As long as you can just keep up a simple attack pattern and supplement it with steady oneshots, that's usually better than a giant suite that's vulnerable to being exploded at any time. Mr. Fixer and Tachyon are WAY more comfortable fighting Omnitron than the Wraith or the Argent Adept.

Bad Strategies:
  • Fewer Heroes: Many of Omnitron's effects key off of H, so it's an oft-considered idea to play Omnitron with the minimum of 3 heroes to offset how much damage you take as a group. This is not nearly as good an idea as it seems, because one thing that DOESN'T key off of H is the threshold for Omnitron's components breaking. And let's not forget that there ARE still drones and environment cards, and the more time a hero devotes to taking those down, the less they devote to Omnitron itself.
  • Ignoring Other Targets: Even outside of that, Omnitron's drones, while not threatening at first glance, need to be kept in check, lest enough of them build up to actually represent enough of a threat. And again, the longer you leave environment targets, even helpful ones, alive, the more likely Omnitron pulls Terraforming and drops a train on you.

Notable Cards
  • Adaptive Plating Subroutine: This is one of the few cards in Omnitron's deck I legit like. Villains that play with damage types defensively are rare (Grand Warlord Voss is the only one that really does anything with it off the top of my head) which is understandable given how few damage types any given hero gets. Still, it's nice to see a card like this providing an interesting challenge.
  • Sedative Flechettes: Anything that says "deal everyone H+1 damage" is already a monstrously painful card, and has no business in a difficulty 1 villain deck. The interesting there isn't just that it also destroys ongoings, but that it does so AFTER the damage, which means things like Ground Pound, Heroic Interception, and all your defensive stuff can mitigate the damage before it dies. So that's nice.
  • Technological Singularity: This one is just as technically interesting as its counterpart above while still being way too mean for a difficulty 1 villain deck, for the sole reason that it deals a separate 2 damage instance for each equipment cards it destroys. The Visionary just feels a mild tingle. Mr. Fixer drops his wrench and winces (or throws the damage right back at Omnitron with Driving Mantis). Bunker EXPLODES.

Variant Strategies:

Cosmic Omnitron

Danger Levels
  • Minions: High
  • Direct Offense: Middling
  • Disruption: High
  • Defenses: Middling
  • Ongoings: Middling
  • Deck Randomness: Middling
  • Nemesis: Omnitron-X

So, Mad Bomber Blade is a pretty drastic reworking of the villain's mechanics while using (parts of) the same deck. Omnitron II, or Cosmic Omnitron, doesn't really feel like that, though! They ARE harder than the normal, markedly so, but honestly this fight just feels like another version of an Advanced Omnitron, one that values tempo management like the Dreamer more than they originally did (where going balls-to-the-wall on offense was ideal).

Cosmic-Powered Exterminator
Still a device, still has 100 health, that hasn't changed. What HAS changed is that Omnitron II starts with H minus 2 Components in play already, meaning they're already going to have built in attacks. Which, y'know, isn't too bad on the surface. They still play an extra card a turn like a JERK, and you don't have to kill everything else to beat Omnitron II. However, the devil is in the details: namely, their flip condition. You need to be careful with parceling out your damage to avoid breaking all of their components and flipping them until you're ready.

Advanced: Good news: this will be easier here, where all devices take less damage! Of course, that means you have the other problem, where Omnitron II has a bunch of components already out and you need to destroy them but can't. Here, I could possibly ramping up your offensive to flip them to the other side if you can, as long as you're actually ready for it.

Sentient Dropship
So remember the Matriarch's gimmick of how any time she plays a card, it's going to be more like five cards? Same deal here. Any time a Drone enters play (from any source, DO NOT FIGHT THIS ONE IN OMNITRON IV) they get another card play. Oh, and remember how Drones aren't 1 health start-of-turn attackers, and how they get stronger the more drones are out? Congratulations, Omnitron II has made all of their deck deadly, not just the weird outliers like Electro-Pulse Explosive and Sedative Flechettes. Hope you brought some wide-ranging area attacks. Oh, and Omnitron II also attacks directly and only flips back if it gets to keep a component to its next turn (which may happen naturally if you have to focus single-target moves onto drones).

Advanced: Devices get a damage boost. And don't forget, being on this side means that there are going to be a LOT of Devices. But you're also in a good position to deal damage now that they're reducer is gone. These abilities aren't any different from classic Omnitron, but their positioning makes them harder to work with.

Challenge - Cosmic Overdrive: H is doubled. What? H is doubled. What? H is doubled. What? H is doubled. What? Yeah Omnitron II clearly needs multiple ways to deal upwards of 10 damage to everything else in its deck. And this also scales up its end of turn attack in Sentient Dropship mode. This is an excellent way to die, and just like Fright Train, a great reason to bring those "if you take 5 or more damage" cards along.

Good Strategies:
  • Tempo Management: Like the Dreamer, you're going to need to pace yourself in this fight. The components and two card plays are as awful as they've ever been, but flipping Omnitron II is something you absolutely need to be ready for. Unfortunately, that's easier said than done in a deck with Technological Singularity and Sedative Flechettes. As with classic Omnitron, minimal setup is the way to go. Also, if you have ongoing destruction, consider using them to trim down the meaner Components rather than going for the 7 damage break effect.
  • Area Attacks: Sure, the Drones are way meaner than the Matriarch's birds, but unlike that fight (or the Chairman), Omnitron II doesn't punish you for destroying them. Your path is obvious: bring as many wide-scale attacks as you can to this fight and wreck every single one that appears. If you can be selective about it, that's nice since it means you can let a component come out and buy you a bit of time, but honestly you may be better off just swinging for the fences and leaving a heap of scrap.

Bad Strategies:
  • Deck Control: Against normal Omnitron, deck control was a good idea even with the double card-play, solely because their deck was so swingy in value. Now, though, the mean cards vastly outnumber the palatable ones, and there's going to somehow be even more card plays. Unless that deck control is literally locking the villain deck, just don't bother here.
  • Heavy Setup: Just like normal Omnitron, your setup is vulnerable to being wiped to the ground at any time. If you need a giant pile of cards in play before you to function, do not fight Omnitron II. You'll have to learn for yourself what a good balance is between setting up and attacking enough to break Components is.

Notable Cards
  • S-83 Assault Drone: Remember these guys? No? Me neither. Well, now they're back, and they are a LOT meaner. Their attack keys off of the number of drones in play, and any time a drone enters play on the Sentient Dropship side, Omnitron II plays another card. This can snowball into all three of these guys being played for a base attack of 4 from each of them, most likely more. They don't have much health, but they don't need much to be a huge threat of Omnitron II.
  • S-85 Repair Drone: Also bad for similar reasons. If you're pacing yourselves in fighting Omnitron II, not a huge deal any more so than in the old deck. But again, their healing gets better with more drones, and you could very easily see a bunch of them come out at once and heal Omnitron II for far more than is remotely reasonable.
  • Disintegration Ray: Generally, this is the largest threat out of Omnitron's components. Normally, again, you'd never see it, but now there's not only a chance they'll start with one in play, but it's very easy they could build one up while their Drones cover for them. This, of course, varies with a lot of things, but in a vacuum I'd say destroying this one before any others is a solid plan.

Last edited by Kalir; 06-27-2017 at 01:35 PM.
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  #16  
Old 10-20-2016, 01:10 PM
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The app was $0.99 over the weekend, and while the DLC is not exactly priced to move, I've been enjoying the base set. Impressions:

Legacy: Galvanize is the best. America's Newest Legacy replaces it with 3 energy damage, which would be fantastic on anyone else but is not so great here. Even when Legacy is doing literally nothing besides Galvanize, he's still worthwhile, which makes Inspiring Presence a little silly. And then he can become immune to damage! What's not to love?

The Wraith: So much damage, so much utility. "Destroy every equipment" effects make her sad, but she gets back on her feet very quickly.

Haka: Not especially good at anything. Ostensibly a bruiser, but Wraith fills that role better. His single-target damage is good, but Ra's is better.

Ra: Not a particularly diverse character, but what he does, he does well. I'll take it.

Tempest: A particularly diverse character, and what he does, he does well. I don't think these heroes are entirely balanced, guys. Loves him some damage support, so Legacy is his best bud.

Tachyon: Takes too long to start contributing. Against especially healthy foes, that's fine? I guess? But she has low utility and low damage for most of the game, and who can afford that?

Fanatic: With damage support, she has an excellent base power. On her own, she doesn't bring much to the team.

Bunker: Cannot do a single thing without ages of setup. You think Wraith is bad against anti-equipment effects? Bunker just goes back home and cries himself to sleep.

The Visionary: A+ support.

Absolute Zero: Don't have a module? TOO BAD, YOU'RE USELESS. Destroy all equipment? TOO BAD, YOU'RE USELESS. I want to like this guy, but he tries his hardest not to let me.



Baron Blade: Even on Advanced, if you have any damage output at all, the Baron is a total wimp.

Omnitron: Lots of health, not much teeth. What's a punching bag doing with so many cards that go away if he takes damage?

Citizen Dawn: Deciding whether/when to let her become invincible makes this an interesting matchup. Being able to hit multiple targets (and, crucially, being able to choose whether you hit multiple targets) makes her much more manageable.

Grand Overlord Voss: Of the base villains, he's the one who'll make you care most about what flavor of damage you deal. He's a good nemesis to Tempest, who would rather let his AOEs take care of the minions and take less damage from the big guy himself.


Psst, your enviroment links in the TOC are pointing to the villain writeups.
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  #17  
Old 10-20-2016, 01:28 PM
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Egarwaen Egarwaen is offline
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Tachyon and Fanatic have card effects that make up for the factors you mention.

Tachyon's entire thing is that she just doesn't care about disruption; as long as her Bursts are moving into her trash, she'll just blithely shrug and get back up to speed, then deliver a knock-out punch.

Fanatic has a ton of cards for mopping up trash, dealing finishing blows, keeping herself alive, disposing of obnoxious villain or environment cards, or amplifying her damage.

Bunker's surprisingly effective with even a single card in play - both Flak Cannon and Grenade Launcher can do a lot on their own, and he's got a lot of ways of keeping cards coming out and into play. He is a bit on the weak side; most of his variants make him better.

A0 is like a better Bunker in that regard. Too much equipment disruption makes him unhappy, but he can live with a surprising amount. Impale and Cold Snap are surprisingly good too. They're better with a damage boost, but they're good anyway.
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Old 10-20-2016, 02:06 PM
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Kalir Kalir is offline
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Yeah the links in the first post have been BROKEN BROKEN IM SO BROKEN for ages. Fixing it now.

Haka isn't a very flashy hero, but what he has that the Wraith doesn't is just being generally huger and more straightforward than she is. Haka also doesn't care as much about disruption as she does, because for him, having a large hand is usually more valuable than a large setup. The Wraith is still USUALLY a stronger hero, but she really needs that setup to be stronger, even if she can get set up really easily with Impromptu Invention.

Legacy is far and away one of the most brokenly strong heroes in the game, and his base power isn't nearly as much of the reason as you'd expect (although it is, and almost every single variant of Legacy there is has a similarly cheesy base power). His deck just has so many ridiculous support and tanking options, it boggles all minds.

Bunker and Absolute Zero are some of my favorite heroes but there's no denying that being so held back by equipment disruption really hurts them. Especially in the disruption meta of the base set, which is to say "DESTROY ALL EQUIPMENT WITH ONE CARD, ALSO DO OTHER HORRIBLE THINGS".

Last edited by Kalir; 10-20-2016 at 02:22 PM.
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  #19  
Old 10-20-2016, 06:46 PM
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I won this week's one-shot on the second try, although I couldn't explain how, since Omnitron has all of the Sedative Flechettes. Skin of my teeth. Everyone survived, but no one with more than four health (unless you count Fanatic dying and resurrecting).

Are you going to go over the alternates at some point? This scenario had a different (much harder) Omnitron as well as Redeemed Fanatic (probably slightly better?) and America's Newest Legacy (minus points for no Galvanize).
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  #20  
Old 10-20-2016, 10:03 PM
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Kalir Kalir is offline
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Yes, but I'm waiting to get my copy of OblivAeon first so I can really get a feel for the variants in action. This is also why I've yet to post Vengeance writeups, because I'm still not sure how you actually go about winning in Vengeance mode.

But to go over the three you posted real quick: Omnitron II (Cosmic Omnitron) is generally considered harder, because they borrow the Matriarch's minion-snowballing gimmick and drones are WAY meaner in hordes than Fowl are. Redeemer Fanatic makes her way better at tanking but absolutely terrible at dealing damage, since the only other reliable power in her deck is Absolution, making her more susceptible to equipment hate than AZ (that takes talent). America's Newest Legacy is honestly more my style, especially if you're running her in a team that doesn't have a lot of damage dealers already, but there's no denying that base Legacy is stronger.

Last edited by Kalir; 11-15-2016 at 08:37 AM.
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Old 11-01-2016, 04:46 PM
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Right, so, Vengeance mode. Before I get into individual villain discussion, I have to discuss the mode itself, and how strategies change for it.

You have a total of H villain decks in play (albeit with decreased card counts for each one) and a villain character card for each one. These villain cards have health more in line with hero health totals, although they may deploy targets of their own. Their disruption is significantly lighter in Vengeance mode, if only because having normal villain levels of disruption would make certain heroes outright unplayable. Additionally, none of the Vengeance villains flip like solo villains do, but they DO have incapacitated effects.

Additionally, Vengeance style villains often feature mini-nemeses within their decks. These represent B-list villains who don't merit a full villain deck of their own, but who are still people who tangle with specific heroes from time to time. In addition to the normal nemesis rules, these mini-nemeses will usually have more dangerous capabilities if their nemesis is active in-game. I'll list out the mini-nemeses in their own section, since having their nemesis in play warrants extra examination.

The upshot of all this is that the core strategy for Vengeance mode is prioritization. Yes, you will have lots of very scary targets to deal with, and it can be overwhelming at first to decide which ones to bring down. But remain calm and work through a list of targets. Don't forget that defeating a villain character renders their deck and all of their cards null and void, same as for an incapacitated hero. The good news is that any area attacks become far more potent than against solo villains, since you'll have a LOT more targets to deal with.

Baron Blade

Danger Levels
  • Minions: Middling
  • Direct Offense: Middling
  • Disruption: High
  • Defenses: High
  • Ongoings: Middling
  • Deck Randomness: Middling
  • Nemesis: Legacy

Remember how solo Baron Blade was more or less a tutorial villain for learning the game? Well, he's not here to show you the ropes in Vengeance mode. Here, he's on a mission, and that mission is delivering a stone cold beatdown. Worse, he's not going to be the one getting his hands dirty for the most part. His game is sabotage and leading the other villains, and he is very, very good at this. In fact, he's much more comparable to his nemesis Legacy in this iteration than ever before, and he should always be a top priority to take down in any Vengeance game.

Evolved Madman
Baron Blade enters play with his Genetically Fused Physique ongoing and a random Device out, which is pretty mean. Your first Ongoing destruction in any game should be aimed at Genetically Fused Physique, or you won't be getting ANYTHING done to damage him. The Device you'll have to make a call on, since they range fairly drastically in power. The worst part is that he ends his turn by attacking the hero with the lowest health for 2 melee. He also attacks himself, but the Genetically Fused Physique will make that a non-issue (as will the Negation Bands), and he has enough defense and health that this won't do a whole lot on its own. Focus on Baron Blade as much as you can unless something that will end the game within the next few turns takes priority.

Advanced: Reduce damage dealt to devices by 2? That kind of sounds mean, and it is, BUT it doesn't honestly change up his strategy much at all. After all, defeating the dude himself removes all his Devices from play. I guess if you're in Omnitron IV it's a good way to die really fast, so watch out for that.

Challenge - Mastermind: Baron Blade's immune to villain damage, is he? Well, that means that his end-of-turn attack no longer hurts himself, so that's a bit awkward. It also means indiscriminate villains can't hurt him for you. But honestly, neither of these is as big of a problem as, y'know... Baron Blade's deck. If you can fight normal Baron Blade, you can fight Challenge (or even Ultimate) Baron Blade.

Incapacitated
I don't discuss hero incapacitated effects in my rundowns, usually, because they vary way too much in power and utility, and they also are pretty self-evident as to the best choice in any given situation. Vengeance villains, though, are another story, because you'll have to deal with them in any match. Baron Blade's effect, in which each hero self-damage for 1 toxic at the start of his turn, is kind of mean, but only if you're playing as dedicated glass cannons. Way better than dealing with Baron Blade himself. By all means go glass cannon to take him down, but switch off once you do.

Good Strategies:
  • Area Attacks: I mean, it's Vengeance mode, of course area attacks are nice. But you want to hit Baron Blade himself, and his Devices are uniformly awful to deal with, so it's better to hit all of them at once if at all possible. The devices don't have much health individually (aside from Omni-Blade, who doesn't really count), so it's not out of the question for a focused attack or two to take one down, but you also need to keep the pressure on Baron Blade himself.
  • All-Out Offense: Baron Blade's presence in a Vengeance mode game will be a constant disruption for the heroes and accelerant for the villains. There are few costs too expensive for eliminating him as fast as possible from play. Yes, other villains might capitalize on lowered defenses from things like High Risk Behaviour or whatever, but let's be honest, Baron Blade can make them capitalize on literally anything by granting them damage boosts or card plays. Take him out as fast as is humanly possible.

Bad Strategies:
  • Heavy Setup: Baron Blade has a lot of disruption, but most of it seems curiously aimed at curtailing setup rather than outright stopping heroes from doing things. Yes, he has the Regression Darts for doing that and those suck, but things like the Impulsion Beam and Obsessive Planning are pretty clearly meant to punish heroes that are already set up. Get enough stuff in play to go nuts at him, but don't go overboard with it.
  • Fighting Mini-Nemeses: Other decks have some seriously murderous Nemeses if their matching hero is in play, such as Revenant, Major Flay, or the like. But honestly, in Baron Blade's deck, seeing a Nemesis come into play is usually WAY better than the alternatives. Just leave them be, for the most part, and focus on Baron Blade. If you have other targets to choose, his Devices are excellent to prioritize.

Mini-Nemeses:
  • Citizen Slash (Expatriette): See, this is what I mean. Citizen Slash's damage being irreducible isn't really that scary in and of itself, and targeting second highest HP for 2 psychic? Whatever, man. You have better things to do with your time than fight this guy. The damage being irreducible doesn't really affect Expatriette at all either, because if she's using Liquid Nitrogen Rounds on this guy, it's because she loaded them into the Submachine Gun, at which point THEY'RE STILL AWESOME.
  • Empyreon (Captain Cosmic): Ditto for this guy. Yeah, area attacking for 1 is pretty annoying? But it's for 1. You'll take WAY more damage from any number of other things Baron Blade decides to do on his turn. And Captain Cosmic's nemesis effect of reducing energy damage specifically? Captain Cosmic doesn't care, because either 1 damage to all of his Constructs causes half of them to activate, or the Cosmic Crest nullifies basically everything Empyreon does anyway. NEXT.
  • Omni-Blade (Omnitron-X): Possibly the most dangerous mini-nemesis in Baron Blade's deck, solely by virtue of their ridiculous HP total. Why deal 15 damage to this thing when you could deal 15 damage to Baron Blade? The annoying part is that all of their devices heal if Omnitron-X is active, but again, Baron Blade remains the highest priority. Drop all pretense of deactivating his devices if Omnitron-X is active and just slug at Baron Blade himself.
  • Ruin (The Argent Adept): Even without the Argent Adept, Ruin attacks the lowest health target (albeit only for 1 damage), which is on top of Baron Blade doing the same. Ruin is one of the few nemeses actually worth attacking even if his nemesis isn't in play. If the Argent Adept IS in play, then your best bet is to beat Ruin to the punch and Cedistic Dissonant his face off of the planet. Hey, if that instrument's gonna die anyway, why not make it work for you?
  • Zhu Long (Mr. Fixer): Reviving Baron Blade's Nemesis cards? Again, the only instance in which you should really care about that is for Ruin, and even then that's a maybe. Furthermore, Zhu Long has enough health that actively attacking him is unlikely to actually defeat him, so don't even bother when Baron Blade is RIGHT THERE. Have Mr. Fixer use him to ramp up Dual Crowbars damage and that's it.

Notable Cards
  • Regression Darts: Ordinarily, damage prevention attacks usually target the lowest health hero. Regression Darts doesn't do this, so it's a bit more reasonable since high-health heroes tend to have damage reducers on hand more often than not. However, the fact that they target two heroes? Beyond the pale, man. In a 3 hero game, that's tantamount to a full turn free from hero harassment.
  • Vengeful Assault: But that's still not the meanest card in Baron Blade's deck. Boosting the damage for ALL villain targets by 1 means a hell of a lot more in Vengeance mode, where villain targets will almost certainly outnumber hero targets. Worse, this makes Baron Blade's ordinarily-tepid Nemesis cards actually pretty dangerous to deal with. And of course, the damage boost applies to Baron Blade himself. (The consolation prize here is that this means his self-damage will do even more damage, unless Negation Bands prevents it because OF COURSE IT WILL.)
  • Old Tricks - New Allies: And that's STILL not the meanest card in his deck! Remember how bad cards that gave the villain bonus card plays were? Well, here's one that gives EVERY OTHER VILLAIN a card play. And then once they've all resolved, he heals every villain target for 1, because why the hell not at this point? This plus Vengeful Assault means that any card play blocks your team has should almost always be directed at Baron Blade whenever possible. (I say almost because Friction exists.)

Last edited by Kalir; 05-11-2017 at 11:19 AM.
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Old 11-04-2016, 02:59 PM
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Ermine

Danger Levels
  • Minions: Low
  • Direct Offense: Low
  • Disruption: High
  • Defenses: Middling
  • Ongoings: Middling
  • Deck Randomness: Middling
  • Nemesis: The Wraith

Hey guys, it's Catwoman! How's it going? Ermine is not, strictly speaking, a dangerous villain. Unpredictable and annoying, certainly, but she will usually not be the biggest threat on the board at any given point in time. The real problem she poses is that she's one of the few villains in Sentinels of the Multiverse who makes milling a legitimate threat you'll have to face. She has ways to put cards you need on top of your deck, and Constant Prattle will trash those cards, ensuring you won't get them back for a while.

Con Artist Extraordinaire
The key to Ermine's disruption is that she starts with Constant Prattle out, which means her cards that put things atop your deck get trashed almost instantly. Destroying it nullifies a lot of Ermine's disruption, but at the same time, you'll usually have better targets for destroying ongoings, at least early on in Vengeance mode. Aside from that, she has a pseudo-second card play at the end of each of her turns, kind of like Infinitor. She either plays a one-shot, or hits the second lowest hero for 2 melee. That and Heavy Hitter aim at second lowest, so it'll be a good idea to disrupt her damage in turn if you can spare it.

Advanced: I'm sorry, what. Destroying a hero ongoing AND equipment at the start of her turn, IN VENGEANCE MODE. Hell no. I refuse. Go to the evil prison. (Or just rely on heroes who either have little need for setup, or really fast and extensive setup.)

Challenge - Canny Thief: Starting with a copy of Subtle Diversion and Uncatchable in play is pretty annoying for sure... but it also doesn't really do anything for Ermine already being a villain you usually eliminate last. Plus, if you were going into an Ermine fight, you were probably already bringing ongoing destruction, so this won't be a huge deal anyway.

Incapacitated
Discarding the top 2 cards of each hero deck is a completely tolerable incapacitated effect, and Ermine is basically solely reliant on her ongoings (which won't even see the light of day frequently) for defense. So if you have lots of damage and no better targets, Ermine is a fine choice for an early defeat. Unfortunately, you will probably have better targets.

Good Strategies:
  • Ongoing Destruction: Ermine's ongoings aren't strictly dangerous, but they are going to keep her alive and you off-balance for a long time. More often than not, destroying them will keep her more than in check for the duration of the game. Ermine's offense isn't bad, but it IS within the realm of acceptability while you focus on more dangerous targets, IF you can bring down her ongoings first.
  • Damage Reducers: That said, Ermine still attacks as often as twice a turn, and usually at targets that are hard to predict and manage. Either use things like Stun Bolt to reduce the damage she specifically deals, or use hardy heroes with damage reducers of their own, to mitigate her damage, since each individual instance isn't very strong. Just make sure the entire team has some method of reducing damage if you're doing the latter.

Bad Strategies:
  • Slow Setup: Ermine's disruption is good enough, especially with Constant Prattle, that only having one or two cards out in a turn will not be enough to keep them intact, especially not with other disruption-heavy villains backing her up. You need to be able to hit the ground running to get away from her disruption, to say nothing of Long Con or Sleight of Hand attacking the cards in your hand as well as the cards in play.
  • Off-Hand Attacks: By this, I mean hitting Ermine with multi-target attacks while focusing the brunt of your offense at another target. If Ermine's in your game, you either need to focus her hard, or ignore her. Committing halfway will waste your team's targeting, since she has enough defense and self-heal to undo a half-assed assault easily. Remember, Vengeance mode is all about target prioritization. Decide early on whether Ermine's going to be eliminated first or last, because you can't be indecisive against her.

Mini-Nemeses:
  • Calypso (Ra): On the surface, moving a card to the top of a hero deck seems like bad news. However, Calypso will usually come into play AFTER Constant Prattle by design, so she's not nearly as intimidating as she seems (although she will still add to Ermine's disruption, so be careful). With Ra in play, the fire damage reducer is countered by the nemesis boost he gets against her, and it's not out of the question for Ra to focus on her if the disruption's getting out of hand. But her nemesis penalty mostly only affects a handful of heroes (and villains), and Ra's one of the only ones who actively cares about it.
  • Equity (The Naturalist): Hey look, more unpredictable attacks. On his own, Equity is barely worth consideration, but if the Naturalist is in play, suddenly he's providing Ermine with some serious kick. Worse, the Naturalist can't rely on his usual tanking to protect the team since Equity will happily take the damage boost against him. That said, the Naturalist can just as easily leverage that damage boost right back at him with Crocodile form: a single Feral Fury in such a state instakills Equity.
  • The Seer (Fanatic): Hahaha what. Again, on his own, The Seer is totally fine to deal with. His attack will bounce off of the fierce biceps of your tankiest hero, no problem. The funny part is if Fanatic is in play, because the Seer's idea of a penalty is preventing heroes from self-damaging. While Fanatic can't sustain many of her best ongoings due to this, other heroes can actively use this to serious benefit, especially if faced with another villain that forces self-damage on a regular basis. For example, Haka, Nightmist, and Sky-Scraper can unleash their meanest area attacks without fear of backlash.
  • Tantrum (Sky-Scraper): Speaking of Sky-Scraper, she gets a really weird form of opposition with Tantrum. Without Sky-Scraper, Tantrum is honestly perfectly fine to leave out, as she'll keep the environment's worst cards in check while you reap the benefits as best as you are able. And if Sky-Scraper is in, honestly, you probably won't even see the area attack in question, especially not if you have targets to throw Aggression Modulators on. Just be careful not to let the environment get too chewed up around Tantrum and you'll be fine.

Notable Cards
  • Heavy Hitter: I don't like it any more than you do, but as the most numerous one-shot in Ermine's deck, expect to see this card played a lot. And as long as Constant Prattle is out, it combines a fairly solid melee attack with a virtual ongoing/equipment destroy effect. Course, the strategy here is easy: just destroy Constant Prattle first.
  • Subtle Diversion: Again, you need to decide whether you're going to attack Ermine at full force or not at all. If you're doing the latter, cool, whatever, this card is largely ignorable. If not, then cool, whatever, you still have ongoing destruction to use on it, right? Constant Prattle isn't the only thing in her deck worth trashing. Or you could have your heroes bring multiple attacks a turn AND have a highly tanky character on the team who can take all the other heroes' first attacks (or just, y'know, not attack her.)
  • Impromptu Heist: The good news is that this card is basically a one-shot without the one-shot keyword, which means it'll often be discarded instead of played. The bad news is she'll destroy an ongoing AND an equipment if it actually gets out, and if it doesn't destroy anything, it'll wait around until stuff to destroy DOES show up. Again, you really need a quick setup on hand, so that this on top of the rest of her disruption doesn't slow you down to the point of uselessness.

Last edited by Kalir; 05-11-2017 at 11:22 AM.
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Old 04-01-2017, 08:27 PM
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Aww yeahhhh

Iron Legacy can be cheesed pretty easily with this party; the win isn't TOO impressive on its own, even if it's on Ultimate. The real fun here was bursting him down with Tempest in basically a single turn, thanks to Vicious Cyclone, Electrical Storm, and Prime Wardens Tempest's nearly unlimited card plays (all at +4 due to various boosts).
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Old 07-07-2017, 05:30 PM
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Nice writeups, and a good excuse to re-read the thread.

I really like the flavor behind Heroic Infinitor. Maybe it's not as strong mechanically, but I still love it.
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Old 07-23-2017, 11:04 AM
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Going to move on to writing up hero variants. I know I said I was going to wait for the release of OblivAeon to do this, but honestly I'm just bored as hell and don't have much work to do still.

(I would try getting my LPs saved from Photobucket, but right now Photobucket doesn't have images of their own, much less mine, to access.)

I'll only cover released hero variants, which shouldn't be a problem as I have all of them in the app, which is currently ahead of the card game in terms of releases there (as of this writing, you can play Fugue State Parse and Omnitron-U in-app only, not physically). Once OblivAeon hits and I do writeups for all of those jolly fellas, I'll add in the newer variants too.
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Old 07-24-2017, 09:13 AM
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I kind of feel like Omnitron-U is categorically worse, so you're not missing out on much there.

(but then I mostly use Omnitron-X as a Unity enabler, so maybe I'm doing it wrong)
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Old 07-24-2017, 09:41 AM
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Omnitron-U is bloody amazing. I'll get into detail during their write-up, but, well... y'know how Self-Sabotage does the cool high damage? Imagine that, but also with X instances of 2 fire damage.
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Old 09-08-2017, 10:24 AM
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I picked up Infernal Relics this week, and this set is on point. Argent Adept is not terribly fun to play but is undeniably one of the strongest heroes in the game, while Nightmist is (intentionally or otherwise) one of the best tanks while also having crazy damage.

The villains are also really excellent. This is the strongest set from a thematic standpoint, and The Ennead and Apostate are wonderful fights mechanically. Meanwhile, if you've ever wanted to run a 100% damage team, here is Challenge Mode Akash'Bhuta and her 200 HP. Stack up your damage modifiers, because you know she's not packing disruption. Just... watch out for the back-to-back Entombs when you have Hunter and Hunted out.

Yes, Gloomweaver is a letdown, but nothing's perfect.

By the way: Kalir's writeup of Tomb of Anubis mentions that Anubis is a nemesis to Ra. That's true, but DID YOU KNOW: Anubis also serves as a nemesis to the Ennead. Since the Ennead can commonly have more targets than you do, Anubis might just be your friend in that fight.
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Old 09-08-2017, 11:10 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mogri View Post
I picked up Infernal Relics this week, and this set is on point. Argent Adept is not terribly fun to play but is undeniably one of the strongest heroes in the game, while Nightmist is (intentionally or otherwise) one of the best tanks while also having crazy damage.

The villains are also really excellent. This is the strongest set from a thematic standpoint, and The Ennead and Apostate are wonderful fights mechanically. Meanwhile, if you've ever wanted to run a 100% damage team, here is Challenge Mode Akash'Bhuta and her 200 HP. Stack up your damage modifiers, because you know she's not packing disruption. Just... watch out for the back-to-back Entombs when you have Hunter and Hunted out.

Yes, Gloomweaver is a letdown, but nothing's perfect.
Akash'Bhuta doesn't have disruption because she has environment acceleration, which turns otherwise-sedate decks into furious hellstorms. And she's got four hate cards and a reasonable amount of damage reduction.

Ennead and Apostate are totally awesome fights; Apostate's one of those rare fights where depending on what he pulls your entire game can wind up being different depending on the ratio of relics to demons.

I actually really enjoy playing Argent Adept; I think of him and Parse as "swiss army knife" characters, but I have an easier time juggling Adept's array of perform effects than Parse's one-shots.
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Old 09-15-2017, 08:50 AM
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In the run-up to OblivAeon, they're adding a new variant to the app each Tuesday. Their unlocks still have to be discovered each time, but the first two (Xtreme Prime Wardens Argent Adept and Captain Cosmic) have already been discovered. I'll add each variant to the posts as I unlock them.
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