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  #91  
Old 05-06-2016, 12:56 PM
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Egarwaen Egarwaen is offline
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I'd rank her as Ongoings: High.

Neither the Captain's Orders nor Maria Helena's Revenge have any innate destruction triggers, so you need ongoing removal to blow them up. But with all her deck reshuffling (and no matter how hard you try, she will reshuffle), even removing them doesn't necessarily help, since they'll probably promptly pop out again. And Maria Helena's Revenge, especially, hurts, punching your lowest-health hero for significant damage every time you destroy a villain target.

If she gets two of these out, you may as well pack up and declare defeat.
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  #92  
Old 05-06-2016, 03:41 PM
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Maria Helena's Revenge hits everyone, not just the hero with the lowest health. That said, I once played a game with Kalir and Trar where I kept both copies under control with a double Stun Bolt each round...
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  #93  
Old 05-06-2016, 03:58 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dtsund View Post
Maria Helena's Revenge hits everyone, not just the hero with the lowest health. That said, I once played a game with Kalir and Trar where I kept both copies under control with a double Stun Bolt each round...
Oh, that's right.

Yeah, Maria Helena's Double Revenge is the secret worst thing about La Capitan. Especially given the way the rest of her deck works. No matter how good your control is, she will reshuffle her trash, she will spend long periods of time being invincible, and she will have lots of minions on the board. So you can't kill her fast, nor can you keep her under control.
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  #94  
Old 05-07-2016, 10:43 AM
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The Dreamer

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

The more the dev cycle for this game goes on, the more you see the devs playing with the inherent way the game works by changing assumptions about heroes, villains, and environments, but the most obvious one of these is The Dreamer, a villain you don't actually want to kill. Fighting her is more about managing your tempo until you have enough of a setup ready to go nuts and take down her projections en masse. (She also probably deserves that difficulty ranking provided of 3 to be honest.)

The Dreamer Dreams
So first things first: if you actually defeat the Dreamer and her massive 6 HP total here, you lose, because you killed a little girl you horrible monsters YOU'RE NO HEROES. It's not hard to avoid damaging her, though: just don't use area attacks. If the environment attacks her, you have the opportunity to redirect that damage to the hero character with the lowest HP, which sucks, but beats losing. Anyway, she starts with H Projections in play, and only flips when they're all destroyed (bringing down H hero ongoings in the process). So make sure you're good and ready before flipping her, and ideally have a few self-destroying ongoings you're okay with sacrificing, like Bloody Knuckles or Slip Through Time.

Advanced: Don't worry, this won't happen for a while on advanced, where all projections get a damage reducer. This means keeping your tempo gets even harder, and you may have to overexert yourself or even catch the Dreamer herself in the crossfire just to stay ahead of things. Be careful here.

Roused From Slumber
Once you do flip her, she goes extremely ham, ending her turn with an H minus 2 area attack and an H minus 2 card play. So at a minimum, she'll be throwing two cards a turn. At a MINIMUM. The good news is, each Projection you destroy here gets placed under her character card, and doing that enough times is the only way to win. Once you're here, you need to be sure you can bring down all kinds of Projections as they enter play, because they will get out way fast, and their combined forces plus the Dreamer's new attack WILL take you down if you aren't ready.

Advanced: Especially when everyone, the Dreamer included, gets a damage boost. You guys like taking even more damage from everything, right? It becomes imperative here to ensure you have everything you need lined up.

Challenge - Frail Child: So, normally, there are a few instances where players could make the choice to catch the Dreamer in the crossfire temporarily, so as to help wipe the field. You no longer get that option in Challenge mode, as even a single point of damage will instantly destroy her. Always always ALWAYS check your fire in this mode. That said, it's not THAT much harder than normal, you just lose a few options you'd only occasionally take in the first place.

Good Strategies:
  • Tempo Management: In order to properly defeat the Dreamer, you need to be able to keep pace with the villain deck, but not get too far ahead of it. Each individual Projection isn't very sturdy, the hardiest they get is the Granite Oni and Grotesque Arachnoid, but they are all very dangerous and there's two of each one in her deck. Fortunately, most of her card plays will be Projections, she has few cards of other types. The only disruption she can cause is Projected Paralysis to delay your setup, which is annoying but tolerable.
  • Low Setup Ceilings: You want to manage your tempo until you're ready, but don't take too long getting ready. The constant damage you take here WILL wear you down without a permanent target to go for. Throw out enough cards to absorb the punishment from her flipping and destroying your ongoings and then get ready for the wild ride. If you're fully set up, focus your efforts on drawing cards while waiting for teammates to catch up, to get more one-shots to disrupt the Dreamer and her Projections with.

Bad Strategies:
  • Wide Scale Attacks: You can redirect any attacks from the environment to the Dreamer, but hero-inflicted attacks can't be dealt with so easily, and there are few, if any, abilities that let you heal non-hero targets. (Captain Cosmic and the Argent Adept can do it, at least.) But again, you don't want to kill everything, right? Just maintain tempo. You can do that without dropping a Grievous Hail Storm in the house.
  • Ongoing Dependence: Remember, she destroys multiple hero ongoings when she flips. And her Projections' disruption effects are on-death as well, and the Illusory Demon eats an ongoing as well. This is one of the rare few matches where equipment-dependent characters are safer than ongoing-dependent ones, so work with it!

Notable Cards
  • The Toy Master: Haha did I say equipment-focused characters were better? What I actually meant was "equipment users need to kill the Toy Master instantly". His attack is slow, but it's potent, especially if you're doing your job right and setting up as much as you can. Thankfully, he's not so durable that you can't bring him down, none of the projections are, but it's still important to bring this guy down, especially lategame.
  • Tooth Fairy: What a difference deck composition makes. Compare this card to Citizen Tears, and look at the two respective decks, and Tooth Fairy comes off as downright friendly by comparison. I mean, it's still forcing everyone to discard, which can hamper your setup even further, so don't let that happen. Don't even worry about the attack though, it will rarely, if ever, hit.
  • Whipacorn: Oh, damage blocking. What a horrid thing you are. It's not the worst ever in this fight unless you're relying on a single damage dealer and they get walloped (DON'T DO THIS). If you're still doing this and still worried, it only blocks them from dealing damage if the Whipacorn itself deals damage. And with it being an H minus 2 attack, it's more than possible to reduce that to the point of being a non-issue. Stun Bolt, ho!

Last edited by Kalir; 05-30-2017 at 08:04 PM.
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  #95  
Old 05-07-2016, 11:05 AM
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One of the things that makes the Dreamer manageable is her flip condition. Since she only flips when there's nothing in play, she starts from zero on her reverse side. This also means you can afford to spend a turn or two preparing for the flip when you've whittled her down to one relatively harmless projection. And most ongoing-dependent characters are going to have a few spares they can afford to lose without hurting their setup.

The biggest problem I've usually run into with the Dreamer is flipping her too fast. You need to be set up for your burn phase.
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  #96  
Old 05-09-2016, 03:08 PM
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Iron Legacy

Danger Levels
  • Minions: None
  • Direct Offense: High
  • Disruption: Middling
  • Defenses: High
  • Ongoings: High
  • Deck Randomness: Low
  • Nemesis: The Freedom Six (Tachyon, Absolute Zero, Tempest, The Wraith, Unity, Bunker)

And as this set features a heroic version of a villain, so too does it feature a villainous version of a hero. Iron Legacy doesn't have a team to buff anymore, so instead he buffs himself and runs at you. And he is very, very good at this, it's not uncommon to start a match against him at half health. He doesn't have much health himself, the same 32 as normal Legacy, and an insulting low amount on most villains. He doesn't need more than that to still be one of the difficulty 4 villains of the game.

Ironclad Tyrant
Iron Legacy begins play with H ongoings in play, and his deck has plenty of them that all give him bonus stats and usually have some other awful thing they do. Needless to say, you hate them all and want them dead. He's also immune to environment damage and deals everyone 3 melee damage at the end of the turn. Except instead of 3 melee damage it'll usually be more like 6 on account of his eighty-kajillion damage boosts. You need to flip him as fast as you possibly can to limit exactly how much damage he's throwing around, and he flips at 20 health or lower.

Advanced: Damage dealt by Iron Legacy on Advanced is irreducible, which... eh? I mean, it makes him harder to turtle, but good luck turtling him anyway unless you have all the damage immunity ever.

Motivated by Desperation
Almost all of his abilities are villainous variations on the normal Legacy's cards, so it makes sense that his version of Motivational Charge is his attack on the other side, swinging at the weakest hero for H minus 1 and healing himself for H plus 1. The damage is fine, the healing isn't, keep pouring it on. Did we mention he also reduces all damage he takes on this side by 1? Because that's a thing. He'll flip back if he starts the turn with 25 or more health, so keep the attacks coming no matter how hard it hurts.

Advanced: So remember how La Capitán autoparries on advanced on her other side? That happens here too. Iron Legacy will deflect the first attack to him each turn to the lowest health hero. Have fun with that. You didn't think you get through Iron Legacy on Advanced with zero casualties, did you?

Challenge - Final Justice: Remember how destroying ongoings as soon as you begin play is how you survive this fight? Well, now Iron Legacy revives them once per villain turn. You have two options: either make sure EVERYONE, not just one character, can contribute constant ongoing destruction, or ignore them and just pile on as much damage as you possibly can (and try to make it irreducible). You'll be racing his self-heal capability on that second one, especially with Armored Fortitude, so uh... good luck.

Good Strategies:
  • Ongoing Destruction: Anything you have that can destroy ongoings is something you want to be playing instantly. Even if Galvanized is indestructible, the rest of his stuff isn't, and you need to wear down a lot of his stuff or else he's going to maintain his 32 HP total all game. And make sure it's GOOD ongoing-destruction if you can, Sarabande of Destruction and Mental Divergence are seriously good here.
  • All-Out Offense: But if you can't destroy ongoings, all you can do is fight. Don't worry about setting up your combos, the fight won't last that long. Just pile on damage as fast as you can and hope you can break through his 32 HP (or at the very least 12 of it) before he flattens all of you with high power attacks every turn.

Bad Strategies:
  • Setup Characters: If you can't contribute to the match from the word "go", you have no business trying to fight Iron Legacy. His damage output is just too high to try to weather, and he has enough disruption effects (especially with playing his ongoings as quickly as he does and Former Allies putting a wrench in your hand size) that getting a full setup of cards is near impossible. Hit the ground running, swinging, and shooting.
  • Calm Environments: The nice thing about Iron Legacy's low health is that he will frequently be the target of environment attacks, which is why it's imperative to flip him to Motivated By Desperation, where those cards can actually hit and do damage. Yes, you run the risk of the environment hitting you too, but if you maintain just a hint of caution, you can set the T-Rex on Iron Legacy just as easily as most villains set it on you.

Notable Cards
  • Vigilance: Most of Iron Legacy's attacks are melee-typed, which isn't a huge deal for you since so few heroes have anything that works with melee immunity, but in the event you do get it, Vigilance (and Flying Assault) both deal projectile damage instead. Flying Smash is a oneshot so you can't plan around it very easily, but Vigilance punishes you for playing cards. You can, if you feel like your setup is fine as is, just not play cards to avoid getting tagged for 2 (and by 2 I mean 5 really) damage.
  • Armored Fortitude: I consider this the top priority for destroying out of his ongoings unless your team has easy irreducible damage, which most don't. The damage reduction itself isn't too bad, but what IS bad is the self-healing potential. You can't afford to let this stay alive and heal him for any length of time, because it WILL undo the bulk of your damage done. I could even argue for a team without ongoing destruction fighting Iron Legacy were it not for the existence of this card.
  • Demoralizing Presence: This one is just funny to me, though. Oh no, each hero deals themselves 1 psychic damage! That's SO MUCH WORSE than taking 4 melee damage. It's still a damage booster, and one you can destroy unlike Galvanized, but if you're worried about self-damage vs. Iron Legacy you're probably doing something wrong.

Last edited by Kalir; 04-05-2017 at 02:49 PM.
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  #97  
Old 05-10-2016, 11:42 AM
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Miss Information

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

Miss Information, as a character, just gets an incredibly raw deal, I think. I mean, your superpower is when you die, your memories get transferred into an alternate reality version of yourself? That's just downright terrible. It's hard to feel much sympathy for her midfight, though, because she has perhaps the best disruption game in all of Sentinels of the Multiverse. Yeah, Citizen Dawn can wipe the field with Devastating Aurora, but Miss Information will constantly be breaking SOMETHING.

There's two keywords in her deck. The first one is Diversions, which are either her other targets or environment-style disruptions that require an active cost to be destroyed. The other are her Clue cards, which are all ongoings that provide her or her minions with a boost, but need to be out for you to discover that there's actually a villain to be dealt with. She kind of handles like Spite in this vein, now I think about it.

Demure Office Worker
I mean, come on. She's not a target, she's your loyal secretary! Why would you think of attacking her? It's all the fault of those Diversions showing up and ruining everything. Each one destroys one of your ongoing or equipment cards at the end of the villain turn, so it's imperative that you get rid of as many of them as you can. You can't have anything stopping you from being the heroes that you are, right? Better find as many Clues as you can to find out who the true villain is! It takes H minus 1 clues to get the real fight started.

Advanced: Oh dear, where did that damage boost come from? I'm sure it's not a big problem. I mean, look at it this way: it also amplifies self-damage, so characters like Absolute Zero or Dr. Medico are happy as can be here.

Revealed Saboteur
Only on this side does she actually become a target. Thankfully, her disruptive abilities are all but gone: in fact, she destroys her own Clue cards at the start of the turn. Only problem is, each one forces everyone to deal themselves 2 sonic damage. She also fights hard and dirty on this side, ending her turn with an attack to the H minus 2 lowest health heroes. And on account of all that guilt of having to fight your seemingly-insane secretary, she counterattacks when damaged with an H minus 2 psychic attack. The good news is that there's very few other sources of damage here, so attacks that disrupt her own offensive are very strong options at this point.

Advanced: Since James Spader isn't available as a hero in this game, on Advanced, Miss Information gets a significant damage reducer to all attacks taken. I guess that's a good case for bringing her nemesis Parse, but that aside, um... hope you brought lots of damage to the fight and maintained your setup as you did. I mean, nobody died with the Demure Office Worker keeping things orderly for them, right?

Challenge - Sloppy Saboteur: At first glance, the fact that Clue cards chain into another card play doesn't seem so bad, since hey, that might mean she chains Clues and flips quickly, sparing you the constant sabotage! Well... no. She'll maintain the effect on her other side, and Clue cards still do bad things to basically everyone! Plus she can use them to fuel another instance of self-damage once she's on Revealed Saboteur. The worst part is that this makes deck control almost impossible, as putting the cards you want on top makes them chain into the cards you DON'T want. My advice is to bring even more ongoing-destruction than usual, to help keep the rampant Clues in check.

Good Strategies:
  • Deck Control: Miss Information plays like a more fun, but much harder, version of Spite. Your main goal in deck control here is to get Clues to the forefront while dodging as many Diversions as you can (ESPECIALLY Diversionary Tactics, which can discard Clues. DIS BAD). Yeah, some... okay, most of the Clues are painful. But you need them, for the same reason you need to eventually flip the Dreamer and start fighting her rather than infinitely setting up.
  • Setup Speed: I don't really care if your setup ceiling is high or low, higher is better probably solely to have more things to soak up destroy effects. It doesn't matter one whit if you lack the ability to get yourself setup as fast as you can. Any heroes that can accelerate their teammates' capability to do so are incredibly valuable here, such as Omnitron-X or Tachyon.

Bad Strategies:
  • Automatic Attacks: Yeah, Unity's bots are super neat, but they're less neat when deprived of targets and have to start cannibalizing one another. Remember, on the Demure Office Worker side, Miss Information isn't a target, and can't even be attacked as a consequence. If you're giving yourself an attack option, make sure you have somewhere to actually aim it.
  • Damage Boosting: Nobody is quite as good at making the heroes damage themselves as Miss Information is, with the possible exception of Plague Rat. Plague Rat's self-damage effects are irreducible, while Miss Information just has a ton of them to field. Be very careful about damage boosting here, and try to prioritize defense and setup over offense until she flips to Revealed Saboteur.

Notable Cards
  • Isolated Hero: This card is worth mention solely because there isn't an effect like it in the game. Miss Information plays this next to the hero with the most cards in play (which could be a lot of people really) and that hero can no longer affect other heroes with their stuff, nor can other heroes affect them. In some cases, this can be beneficial, as Nightmist or Haka unleashes an especially ham attack that fails to damage their team in the slightest. In other cases, it is extremely very bad and hates you (Captain Cosmic does not ever want to be isolated ever).
  • Diversionary Tactics: As much as I complain about Spite as a character, he doesn't have anything that suddenly gives you fifty kajillion threats to deal with. This card is even meaner on Demure Office Worker side for two reasons. First, it discards all non-Diversion cards in the revealed set, which means she can discard Clues before they ever see the light of day. And second, each of the Diversions revealed by this card will blow up one of your things. By the way, she has 4 copies of this in her deck and each one plays the top card of the deck. Once had a match where she chained 3 of them at once. We, uh... we didn't win.
  • Missing Resources: Another interesting effect here (and some absolutely hilarious artwork). Depending on your hero composition, you may either find yourself having everyone discard their hand, or simply one hero. If you're the sorts to play with open hands, you can take the time to calculate exactly who stands the highest chance of not screwing over everyone else with their revealed card. I just prefer to eyeball it because I'm playing a game and I don't consider that kind of indepth card counting fun.

Last edited by Kalir; 04-05-2017 at 02:52 PM.
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  #98  
Old 05-13-2016, 12:31 PM
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The Block

Checklist
  • Hero Support: No
  • Hero Disruption: Yes (Block Guard)
  • Field Damage Modifiers: Yes (Defensive Displacement, Lock Down, Warden Hoefle, Imprisoned Rogue)
  • Villain Acceleration: No
  • Hostile Targets: Yes (Block Guard, F.I.L.T.E.R. Officer, Char, Time-Crazed Prisoner)
  • Indiscriminate Field Damage: Yes (Char)
  • Alternate Loss Condition: No

Another one of my favorites, the Block is an environment that isn't really unified in what it wants to do. Most of the time, the Agents will keep the Inmates in check, but occasionally the Inmates will break out and start raising hell, or the Agents will get a little overzealous in keeping the peace. It's among the easiest environments in the game because it rarely ever poses a true threat, but it still manages to keep a hand in the affairs of the game.

Good Strategies:
  • Evenhanded Attacks: There are two instances where the Block becomes really dangerous: with Warden Hoefle leading a Lock Down, or with a Prison Riot launching several inmates out at once. Both of these become easier to handle if you just play carefully and let the Block's inhabitants fight it out amongst themselves. This isn't to say to let everything there live forever (nor will everything live forever, with the deck's self-destructive tendencies), just that you should ensure the inhabitants spend more time fighting each other (or the villains) instead of you.
  • High Setup Ceiling: You also want to take advantage of any Defensive Displacements that come out, unless facing an enemy who has a means of winning aside from raw damage. And unless you accelerate the environment deck or already have an Inmate out, it destroys itself at the start of the turn. Having that much damage reduction for everything on the field gives you a lot of time to sit back, save up your one-shots that do damage, and simply gear up for unleashing once a Lock Down comes up.

Bad Strategies:
  • No Environment Destroy Effects: The fact that the Block self-destructs in a lot of its instances doesn't mean it always will. Char, in particular, is a big enough threat that he could probably have had his own villain deck at some point. And while the Imprisoned Rogue or Warden Hoefle both instakill targets, remember that priority goes to whoever came out first, and that they will go for lowest rather than highest health. If things get that bad, best to have a Flash Flood or something on hand to wipe the whole mess to the ground.
  • Finishing Off Villain Targets: The Time-Crazed Prisoner is probably going to attack heroes, and Char definitely is. However, the Agents in the deck will, assuming you let them and they don't have better choices, usually go after villain minions, which is as good here as it is in any other deck. I wouldn't let them build up too far, since they'll start running out of weak minions to kill and come after you, but it's worth consideration.

Notable Cards
  • Prison Riot: It plays H minus 1 Inmates. There are five total Inmates in the deck. It discards everything else in its path. Seeing Prison Riot come out usually means discarding the entire deck to set up more than enough threats to deal with. The Time-Crazed Prisoners get a massive base damage on their attack, and Char's area attack will usually have a damage booster or two to turn it into pain without end. Hope that you have environment destruction when this happens, or else you'll be focusing your attacks at the Environment for a solid round of play.
  • Defensive Displacement: Force fields, yay! This thing reduces damage by 2 across the field and persists as long as there are Inmates out. Provided you can keep the Imprisoned Rogues in check, this is more than enough to buy you and your team time to turtle up and get to a safer position. And it destroys at the start of the turn where no Inmates are out, giving you a clear indicator of how long it'll persist for. That said, be careful: 2 damage is a lot to block, but it's no Meteor Storm: you can still be damaged (and so can everything else).
  • Block Guard: This card is more than reason enough to leave things alive and carefully manage Inmate or villain HP totals. Their attack blocks the target from dealing damage on a hit, making them incredibly vital for keeping the most dangerous Inmates in check. They also target the lowest HP things, so you can use it to trip Bee Bot, handle dangerous villain minions, et cetera. Very useful, but don't let him hit your team if you can help it.
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Old 05-14-2016, 08:20 AM
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Time Cataclysm

Checklist
  • Hero Support: Yes (Atlantean Throne Room, Main Computer Room, Marsquake!)
  • Hero Disruption: Yes (Crushing Hallway, Marsquake!)
  • Field Damage Modifiers: Yes (Atlantean Throne Room, Oppressive Smog)
  • Villain Acceleration: Yes (Main Computer Room)
  • Hostile Targets: Yes (Charging Triceratops, F.I.L.T.E.R. Spy, Giant Mutated Specimen, Tendrils of Madness)
  • Indiscriminate Field Damage: Yes (Surprise Shopping Trip, Crushing Hallway)
  • Alternate Loss Condition: No

Can't decide what environment to play in any given game? How about all of them mashed together at once? The Time Cataclysm is full of cards that all feel like they should be in different decks, right down to the artwork for target numbers being unique to different locations (and the music being a mashup if you play on the video game version). The good news is that all of these timelines average towards helpful, but that doesn't mean that it's safe. I mean, would YOU call throwing about ten or so timelines into tumble-dry a good idea?

Good Strategies:
  • Environment Deck Control: There is a REALLY sharp variance between the good and bad cards here. It's not uncommon to see Atlantean Throne Room last for the entire first half of the game, but Crushing Hallway or Surprise Shopping Trip are both just painful to deal with. And if you have any heroes who want to unnaturally extend the lifespan of their stuff, Fixed Point is good to know when it'll arrive. Environment control improves your odds of managing all of this.
  • Environment Destruction Prioritization: The good news is, Passing Tumbleweed and Rift in Time will both let you destroy environment cards for free. So you need to constantly be making guesses as to which Anomaly in play is worth keeping and which one needs to be blown up somewhere in the vicinity of yesterday. Use them both to your advantage, especially since Rift in Time also accelerates the environment deck rapidly and Passing Tumbleweed is fragile enough to remove when it stops being convenient.

Bad Strategies:
  • Glass Cannons: One very consistent feature of the Time Cataclysm is that it WILL be chucking damage around, although not very much at once. The main factor here is that it just slings damage around like crazy, and the Atlantean Throne Room can only block so much of it. Be very careful when using heroes that self-amplify their damage or deal self-damage, because you can never be sure when a Surprise Shopping Trip comes up and suddenly Omnitron-X's turn is HOW far away?
  • Inflexible Heroes: Although not quite as fun as the Realm of Discord in this vein, the Time Cataclysm has a lot of possibilities it can field, and without heroes willing and able to adapt to these changing circumstances, you're going to suffer perhaps a bit more than is really advised. Make sure people can fight extra targets, reduce damage, make use of bonus card draws, et cetera.

Notable Cards
  • Fixed Point: This card is hilarious. Because it enters and leaves play just before the villain turn, they'll usually act before you, so the minions that you destroy won't get to do much more than collapse and die when this thing leaves. Anything that would self-destruct at the start of your turn (or when you'd play or use it), on the other hand, doesn't do that. Mr. Fixer can blend his styles. Haka can maintain a Ground Pound or play it for free. Expatriette gets a headband. It does protect villain ongoings for that turn, though, so it's not a totally free ride.
  • Oppressive Smog: Most of the time, this card doesn't do a whole lot, because either your healers have something else to do with their turn, or you don't have healers. Even so, it's important to know that it's there, because reducing healing by 2? May as well just say "NO HEALING, EVER." I guess if it did that, it could also screw over villains who self-heal at great length. Shame it doesn't, eh?
  • Tendrils of Madness: Y'know how most things that have on-hit effects only do so if they deal damage? Tendrils of Madness doesn't do that, and it aims for the highest health target. Which, in practice, basically means the main villain. I mean, there are matches where this isn't always going to be the case, such as with the Ennead or the Dreamer, but still. Not cool, bro.
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  #100  
Old 05-14-2016, 10:09 AM
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Never actually played in either of those, but they sound interesting!
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  #101  
Old 05-15-2016, 04:13 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Kalir View Post
right down to the artwork for target numbers being unique to different locations (and the music being a mashup if you play on the video game version).
Plus cards having keywords appropriate to those decks (like Passing Tumbleweed being Cover, or F.I.L.T.E.R. Spy being an Agent).
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  #102  
Old 05-16-2016, 12:38 PM
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The Final Wasteland

Checklist
  • Hero Support: Yes (Ancient Library, Con's Bunker)
  • Hero Disruption: No
  • Field Damage Modifiers: No
  • Villain Acceleration: No
  • Hostile Targets: Yes (Abominable Snowman, Amphibious Chupacabra, Horrid Skunk Ape, Mongolian Death Worm, New Jersey Devil, Rat Beast)
  • Indiscriminate Field Damage: Yes (Horrid Skunk Ape, Mongolian Death Worm)
  • Alternate Loss Condition: No

I just really love the Final Wasteland from a thematic standpoint. Post-apocalyptic scenarios have been done to death, but rarely have they ever been the result of cryptid attacks. (Note: this area of the Final Wasteland doesn't take place in east Asia on account of the lack of kaiju represented here. Yes, this is canon.) As an actual location to fight in, the checklist up top says it all: if you want an environment full of things to fight, and not much else, go to the Final Wasteland.

Good Strategies:
  • High Damage Output: Needless to say, with all of those creatures running around slinging damage at everything that isn't them, you'll want to be able to match them for damage. This also helps to soften up villain targets enough for the cryptids to finish off, because they WILL try to do that. With Unforgiving Wasteland out, you can straight up neuter some villain decks this way (The Matriarch, Grand Warlord Voss, and the Chairman come most readily to mind).
  • High Defenses: Just as you need to be able to dish it out alongside the environment, you need to be able to take it, too. There's going to be a lot of attacks flying around, and the villain is, of course, going to do their best to help matters. As long as you have enough defense and keep the villain occupied with environment attacks, you should get through okay.

Bad Strategies:
  • Environment-Cooperating Villains: By this, I mean any villain that either plays more environment cards or uses them in some way to fuel their own nonsense, like Akash'Bhuta. The Final Wasteland has the second highest total amount of targets in any environment deck, right after the Enclave of the Endlings, and the Abominable Snowman or Mongolian Death Worm is NOT fun to see pop out on the villain turn.
  • Multi-Target Heroes: And by this, I mean either heroes who create targets with their decks (Unity and Captain Cosmic, primarily) or the Sentinels. Your extra targets are extremely tasty to the cryptids, and with Unforgiving Wasteland out, there's no guarantee you'll get it back if they do bite the dust. I mean, hey, better them than you, but you still probably don't want to lose the core of your deck, right?

Notable Cards
  • Unforgiving Wasteland: Just like this thing says, when a cryptid destroys a target by attacking it, that card is removed from the game. At first, that just seems like a cute extra thing, but once you get into the ramifications of this, you can break entire fights wide open. Ambuscade can lose his ability to flip, Apostate stops having his defensive array, The Dreamer can become potentially unwinnable. Be careful, and if there's a chance a hero target could get trashed this way, don't let it.
  • Mongolian Death Worm: Because Chemical Explosions aren't beefy enough for an environment field attack. 3 melee and 3 toxic to literally everything is kind of insane (Sky-Scraper REALLY wants to throw an Aggression Modulator on this thing). The fun part is that it shuffles back into the environment deck on the environment turn's start, which means if it's the only card left in the deck, it'll just bounce in and out of play spraying this damage like crazy.
  • Ancient Library: Con's Bunker heals everyone, yes, but it also accelerates the environment unless you destroy it. Ancient Library doesn't do this. It stays out unless some environment destroy effect says it does, and drawing two cards at the start of your turn is REALLY good. Definitely consider it, especially if you're going to be throwing lots of damage around anyway and the Mongolian Death Worm isn't nearby.
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  #103  
Old 05-16-2016, 01:17 PM
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Originally Posted by Kalir View Post
[*]Unforgiving Wasteland: Just like this thing says, when a cryptid destroys a target by attacking it, that card is removed from the game. At first, that just seems like a cute extra thing, but once you get into the ramifications of this, you can break entire fights wide open. Ambuscade can lose his ability to flip, Apostate stops having his defensive array, The Dreamer can become potentially unwinnable. Be careful, and if there's a chance a hero target could get trashed this way, don't let it.
On the other hand, La Capitan might be survivable here...
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Old 05-17-2016, 12:01 PM
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So, gonna finish up for now with Wrath of the Cosmos, as well as Guise, Wager Master, and Omnitron IV. The bad news is, I've only ever seen Guise played, and even then only with the Crimbo variant, and I've literally never encountered Wager Master in the wild. So I'll probably have to delay a bit on those two. The good news is, Wager Master is enough of a mess, from what I've heard, that I could just write down "do what the hell ever" and it'd be as good a strategy as any. But I'm getting ahead of myself.

Captain Cosmic

Checklist
  • Reliable Damage: Yes (Cosmic Weapon)
  • Ongoing/Environment Destruction: No
  • Team Support Abilities: Yes (Augmented Ally, Autonomous Blade, Cosmic Weapon, Dynamic Siphon, Energy Bracers, Wounding Buffer, Vitality Conduit)
  • Big-Ass Attack Option: Yes (Construct Cataclysm)
  • Deck Control: No

When I first saw Captain Cosmic in a friendly completionist's copy of the game, my eyes just glazed over. Design just didn't appeal to me at all. Probably didn't help that another player there, a complete sad-sack who didn't support the team and spent most of the game complaining about he wouldn't have a date for Valentine's Day, picked him to start. This is so far from how AMAZING Captain Cosmic really is, though! He's like support Unity, and he is fun as hell, just giving your teammates all kinds of silly new powers and capabilities. Not as strong as Legacy, nobody is, but still incredibly fun.

Like Unity, Captain Cosmic is built around his Constructs, which are all 4 health targets. Unlike Unity, Captain Cosmic doesn't have any limit on when he can play them, and these Constructs get played on hero targets, modifying their capabilities somehow. You'll spend most of your time just giving the rest of the heroes a bit of an extra edge in how they do their usual things, even if it won't be very consistent.

Strengths:
  • Team Support: This one's obvious, but it bears repeating. Cosmic Weapon, Augmented Ally, and Dynamic Siphon, in particular, give lots of heroes incredible ways of cheating past their expectations. And given his base power, Captain Cosmic is going to be chucking out an incredible number of Constructs, and with Sustained Influence and Unflagging Animation on tap, those Constructs will be staying around for a lot longer than that meager 4 health would indicate.
  • Graceful Failure: First off, like Unity, Captain Cosmic's Constructs aren't Ongoings or Equipment, and therefore dodge most destroy effects. Second, while Unity is generally build around needing to keep her Mechanical Golems alive, Captain Cosmic is clearly designed with the expectation that yes, your Constructs are going to get destroyed, but that's okay because you'll have a plan for that. All of his one-shots destroy Constructs to do more shenanigans (except Harsh Offense which self-mills), and Destructive Response lets you turn each destroyed Construct into a new attack (even if you revive it with Sustained Influence!).

Weaknesses:
  • Frail: That doesn't change the fact that Captain Cosmic's stuff still all has health. Captain Cosmic himself isn't very sturdy either, especially with the incredibly addictive Unflagging Animation out. One very valuable skill he needs to learn is when to blow up his Constructs that are already out rather than risking them all dying to one mean area attack. Cosmic Crest certainly helps keep them alive, but only if you get an opportunity to actually use its power.
  • Indirect: Captain Cosmic, much like Unity, is almost wholly reliant on Constructs to help himself or his team. Yes, he can give himself a Cosmic Weapon and fight with that (and if nobody else needs one it's not a bad idea honestly), but that's a temporary solution, as are all of his Constructs. There's a reason his base power is "play or draw the top card of your deck", and it's because he REALLY NEEDS CARDS PLAYED.

Notable Cards
  • Cosmic Weapon: Generally speaking, a 3 damage attack as a power is the standard by which you measure a reliable main weapon. The trick is in deciding who among your team needs it, or would rather have an Autonomous Blade (or even a Wounding Buffer) instead. As a general rule, give it to heroes who don't have a good strong reliable attack in their deck. Mr. Fixer, Absolute Zero, The Visionary, Sky-Scraper and Nightmist are all reasonable choices here. Remember, they don't have to use it, but the option is appreciated. And if they don't, destroy it and do something cool with it!
  • Augmented Ally: Dynamic Siphon is hilarious, don't get me wrong (throw it on The Wraith and watch her Stun Bolt spam the main villain into uselessness), but there are quite a few heroes who have lots of powers, lots of cards, and not enough time to use either. Augmented Ally lets them do that to an amazing degree. Bunker, in particular, really loves this one, but also good choices are Haka, Ra, Expatriette, Legacy, and Omnitron-X.
  • Conservation of Energy: Yes, Construct Cataclysm is amazing and hilarious and kills lots of things, or one thing very hard. Conservation of Energy is your REAL powerhouse, though. First off, even just topdecking it with Fabrication and not destroying anything is still draw or play one card. Second, have you SEEN how much Captain Cosmic wants to play and draw new cards? And third, the other heroes, while they like your assistance, probably aren't going to need every single Construct you have in play at all times. Feel free to turn a few of them into better things.

Variant Strategies:
Prime Wardens Captain Cosmic
I wish I could say this variant does better or worse in more technical situations than it says it does, but honestly this one's pretty much as it says on the box. Absorption is much stronger than vanilla when faced with opponents that will destroy Constructs more often, and weaker when not. The only fiddly bit is that in order to make the most of your cards like Conservation of Energy or Construct Cataclysm, you have to trip Absorption and wait for an outside source to blow up something in order to play all the cards, but that's not usually going to be hard to do.

Xtreme Prime Wardens Captain Cosmic
Now we're talking. Lacking the Construct output of the other variants means that Xtreme Prime Wardens Captain Cosmic is going to have a much harder time throwing out Constructs, which in turn makes him a weaker support character. It's also hard to set up a bunch of Constructs at once to really amp up for a combo attack (I recommend stacking Autonomous Blades on each of your Constructs if you have no other better damage dealers to use them). But if it does, and there's enough damage boosts around for all of your Constructs to use them, look out world, you can instagib villains.

Requital Captain Cosmic
Hey y'know how Crazed Artifice just lets Infinitor throw out a kajillion Manifestations? Don't you wish you could do that as a hero? Well, Requital lets Captain Cosmic do exactly that. This is the perfect form of Captain Cosmic if you want to just get a rapid setup before anyone knows what the hell's going on. That said, you REALLY want one of those to be a Cosmic Crest or Cosmic Weapon to wield, so your power uses don't end up reading "please murder me". Also: bear in mind that you must play all three of these cards, which could lead to Setback-like situations where you blow up stuff you'd really like, although you DO get to choose the order they're played.

Last edited by Kalir; 11-04-2017 at 06:01 PM.
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  #105  
Old 05-17-2016, 02:13 PM
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  • Frail: That doesn't change the fact that Captain Cosmic's stuff still all has health. Captain Cosmic himself isn't very sturdy either, especially with the incredibly addictive Unflagging Animation out. One very valuable skill he needs to learn is when to blow up his Constructs that are already out rather than risking them all dying to one mean area attack. Cosmic Crest certainly helps keep them alive, but only if you get an opportunity to actually use its power.
  • Indirect: Captain Cosmic, much like Unity, is almost wholly reliant on Constructs to help himself or his team. Yes, he can give himself a Cosmic Weapon and fight with that (and if nobody else needs one it's not a bad idea honestly), but that's a temporary solution, as are all of his Constructs. There's a reason his base power is "play or draw the top card of your deck", and it's because he REALLY NEEDS CARDS PLAYED.
Gonna be honest here: I consider these both strengths.

Frail: Yup. Captain Cosmic's stuff explodes at the drop of a hat. He hates "all targets" or "all hero targets" attacks. They wreck his shit like nothing else, though he's got a few good contingencies. On the other hand, "hero target with the lowest health" or "non-villain target with the lowest health" effects? Captain Cosmic loves those. He can't get enough of them. They turn him into the most tankatronic tank that ever tanked tanks. "Oh look, once again you've blown up my 4 health vitality conduit. Good thing I'll have three more in play after my next turn. Meanwhile, my team's health hasn't moved since turn 1".

Indirect: Yup. Captain Cosmic is basically immune to shut-down / denial, unless you've got some effect that basically stops him from doing anything at all.

Captain Cosmic rarely deals damage himself. He's usually got something or someone else dealing damage for him. "Cannot deal damage" effects basically don't matter.

Captain Cosmic treats his play phase and his power phase as interchangeable. Can't do one? No problem! Do the other instead! Worthy of note: his power isn't "play the top card of your deck" it's "put the top card of your deck into play". That's important because it bypasses "cannot play cards" effects or effects that trigger off cards being played.

Now, Cosmic is quite setup-heavy, very deck dependent, and very technical. He's "baby's first Argent Adept". Unlike, say, Fanatic or Legacy or Tempest, he's not doing anything out of the gate. You need to know his deck and how to use it to play him well.
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  #106  
Old 05-19-2016, 11:48 AM
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All excellent points. My writeups are, as mentioned topside, meant just for a quick glance for players who are just looking at the barebones capabilities of what a hero can do, but that's no reason people can't chip in with their own experiences.

Sky-Scraper

Checklist
  • Reliable Damage: No
  • Ongoing/Environment Destruction: Yes (Emergency Evac, Neutralizing Resonator)
  • Team Support Abilities: Yes (Catch A Ride, Micro-Assembler, Thorathian Monolith)
  • Big-Ass Attack Option: Yes (Explosive Reveal, Tectonic Chokeslam)
  • Deck Control: Yes (Neutralizing Resonator)

The next difficulty 3 hero (and technically the last so far, since this came out after Vengeance I think?), Sky-Scraper is... really hard to actually narrow down what they're good at. But whatever it is, she IS good at it. There's a lot of strong unique effects that she has, and she has some solid standby options for just ruining the villain's day. The only trick is in making sure those options work.

The first step to understanding Sky-Scraper is an obvious one: she changes between three different character cards, each of which affords a new base power. Whenever she plays a card with the Tiny, Normal, or Huge keyword, she changes to that character card. As a rule, Huge is good for Haka Rampage style attacks that hit lots of things really hard, Normal is what you do to build up and play defensive, and Tiny relies on spamming her Link cards, which are equipment cards played on other targets to sabotage them (or in the case of the Micro-Assembler, aid heroes).

Strengths:
  • Villain Disruption: Like Absolute Zero, there's two primary ways to play Sky-Scraper. The first is to rely mainly on her Tiny and Normal forms to rapidly draw and play Link cards. No single card is especially good at dealing with villains, but with her Tiny base power, she'll throw out enough of them to keep pace with Tachyon, and the more links out, the more you can throw off villains in whatever they're trying to do.
  • Emergency Response: The second way is to use her Huge and Normal transforming cards to be a giant berserk obstacle, blocking and slinging damage all over the place. This becomes even more hilarious when (if) you have Proportionist in play, but even with out it, in one turn you could do Colossal Left Hook for 3, Tectonic Chokeslam for 4 and 1 spray, and then her Huge base power for another 2 spray. That's pretty solid fighting.

Weaknesses:
  • Card Play Dependent: Two of her three forms only provide base powers that draw or play more cards, and Concussive Clap isn't always available or reliable if your damage is boosted somehow. Just like how she can keep up with Tachyon's card play, she is just as dependent on actually having that card play as Tachyon. And unlike Captain Cosmic, the wording on Sneaking does mean you can't use it (as effectively) if card play is blocked.
  • Backlash: When fighting in her Huge form, you might notice that you'll be hitting your teammates with your base power for 0 damage. This is intentional there, not just for Proportionist making it even stronger, but for ANY damage boosts. And this applies to Tectonic Chokeslam, too. Yes, she's a formidable fighter in Huge form, but so is Haka doing a Rampage or Nightmist casting Oblivion, and you don't want those always around either.

Notable Cards
  • Emergency Evac: This card is so good. It is so, so good. It costs you your Link cards in play? Psh, whatever, you'll get those back. But destroying 2 villain ongoings, ALL environment cards, AND healing your team? What? Yes please. How do I get more of this card, I don't have enough copies in my Sky-Scraper deck.
  • Micro-Assembler: Also really good. You can play it on Sky-Scraper herself, sure, but odds are good another hero on your team could make better use of it. Either give it to a hero with one equipment piece they REALLY need out (Legacy, Ra, Unity), or to a hero who needs lots of equipment from their deck (Expatriette, The Wraith, Unity again, Omnitron-X). I really can't stress enough how good giving other heroes deck-search tools AS A POWER is.
  • Proportionist: ...Not as good. It shares a lot of the problems with Harmony, in that you do really kind of want it to make all your stuff constantly better, but there's only the two copies and you don't have ways to search for that as easily as for your other stuff. And as mentioned in the above, Proportionist boosts her sonic damage, which means Concussive Clap starts actually having backlash. The good news is, if you have the Visionary on your team, you can finetune that damage with ease AND amp up her one-shots by converting them to sonic damage.

Variant Strategies:
Extremist Sky-Scraper
As with the Sentinels, Sky-Scraper's variant has an alternate for each of her forms. And in Extremist Sky-Scraper's case, Intravenous Assault and Upheaval have situational transforms to normal built in, so you can shift your size more often. Normal's Improvise is somewhere between her vanilla Tiny power and Setback, where you'll just chuck a card and hope for the best, which can transform you. It's really hard to make a recommendation for how to play her in just this small paragraph for how much everything changes, but in general, try to stack up lots of links on the primary villain for Intravenous Assault, and be very careful with Proportionist: yes, it's powerful, but maybe don't hit your entire team for 3 sonic damage whenever you use Upheaval.

Last edited by Kalir; 11-16-2017 at 01:27 PM.
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  #107  
Old 05-22-2016, 08:00 PM
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Have been hectic and busy. Will post a write-up soon, but doubtful it'll be of Guise on account of not having access to his deck very easily, in which case I'll table the minipack for now and just finish up Wrath of the Cosmos.
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Old 05-23-2016, 12:57 PM
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Infinitor

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

It's kind of amazing that it took until Wrath of the Cosmos to have a villain in the same mold as Plague Rat, whose lack of other strategies is offset by their pure damage. Unlike Plague Rat, Infinitor is a bit harder to explicitly cheat around, even with Wagner Mars Base, because a lot of his damage comes from his Manifestations. Even outside of that, Infinitor himself is a solid fighter, albeit without much in the way of irreducible damage. Get ready for a beating, but don't be too worried, his difficulty rating of 2 is probably the most accurate in all of Wrath of the Cosmos.

As mentioned, Infinitor largely relies on Manifestation cards, as his brother and nemesis Captain Cosmic relies on Constructs. Most of his cards that aren't Manifestations are cards that accelerate his card play or damage. So the key to defeating him is to managing his Manifestations.

Tormented Malefactor
This is, by design, pretty difficult, given that on this side he starts with just enough Manifestation cards in play to not flip, and reduces all damage to villain targets by 1. He has a standard issue H minus 1 highest health attack, whatever, but the real problem isn't that, it's withstanding the attacks of all the Manifestations. That said, you might not want to destroy them all, because he flips at the start of the turn with H Manifestations out.

Advanced: The good news is, you won't get a choice in the matter here, as Infinitor will play the top card of his deck until you get H plus 1 Manifestations out. This is exactly as bad as it sounds given that he is already really good at self-acceleration. Maximize those defenses until you get to the other side!

Unstable Despoiler
Here, Infinitor goes all Mother 3 and starts trying to rein himself in despite himself, destroying the weakest Manifestation each turn. I mean, his attacks get Taiaha'd, going up to H damage and targeting 2 dudes, but he's still going to help you destroy his own Manifestations, which is honestly really good. Try to keep him on this side as long as you can, not least to limit the targets throwing around damage.

Advanced: A damage boost doesn't seem too bad until you recall that Infinitor probably didn't flip with only H Manifestations, but likely with a lot more. And his Manifestations get a LOT of attacks in, on characters that REALLY don't want them. Bees careful.

Challenge - Pervasive Horrors: All Manifestations take 2 less damage from everything. On the one hand, this is a GREAT instance for bringing along heroes with easy irreducible damage (Parse, Mr. Fixer, or Omnitron-X). On the other hand, this doesn't do anything for Infinitor himself, and he'll still be destroying his Manifestations left and right, so you can just do the same thing Fanatic does against Apostate and rush the main dude directly.

Good Strategies:
  • Heavy Defense: Back to the good old days of Rook City, Infinitor relies on spamming as many attacks as he can, and both the Lambent Reaper and Crushing Cage do dual-typed attacks. You want as many damage reducers as you can possibly field, and it wouldn't hurt to have emergency immunity moves like Hypersonic Assault or Ground Pound.
  • High Setup Ceiling: The extent of Infinitor's disruption game is Crushing Cage, which blocks card plays on one hero target. Past that, he'll leave your stuff alone. If you manage to survive his attacks effectively enough, you can line up a whole bunch of delightful things to stomp him in a single turn, no problem. And with only 65 health, it's not out of the question to nickle and dime him until such a point where Tachyon or Bunker can drop a train on him.

Bad Strategies:
  • Glass Cannons: Imagine a situation where Crazed Artifice plays three Lambent Reapers at once. Now imagine you're Chrono-Ranger with Hunter and Hunted out. Now imagine that you are dead, because you are. Do NOT let up with your defenses at any time in this fight, because Infinitor will always have some way of exploiting this. You don't need to damage race him, you can win by attrition.
  • Slow Start: Turtling is all well and good here, but you can't afford to dally when facing Infinitor. You need those defenses up and you need them up yesterday. Bunker sitting in Recharge Mode drawing cards is way better than waiting for Ammo Drop, as tempting as it is. There'll be time for elaborate setup once you're blocking as much damage as you possibly can here.

Notable Cards
  • Lambent Reaper: Cool artwork, but MEAN EFFECT. 2 and 2 to the lowest HP hero target? What? No! I did not want to be fighting La Capitán right now! These are always always ALWAYS your highest priority to kill unless the lowest health hero is Nightmist in Mistform or the Visionary in her Telekinetic Cocoon. That said, if that IS the case, that buys you and your crew a LOT of time to set up free from reaping.
  • Ocular Swarm: Remember how Captain Cosmic has ways of making his Constructs work to his benefit even when destroyed? Ocular Swarm is Infinitor's answer to that. I wouldn't really call them super high priority, not if there's Lambent Reapers or Crushing Cages out, since they only attack or play a card when something else dies, and their attack is piddly. Still, they're not something you want left around for very long. Best time to destroy them is after something that blocks the villain from playing cards, like Take Down or Mistbound.
  • Whispers of Oblivion: Infinitor has a few cards that self-accelerate, so it's hard to pick just one to nail down for notable, but I'm going to go with this one. Attacking every target on the field isn't too big in a vacuum, and the low damage means he'll probably only kill Manifestations, but he wants to kill any targets at all to heal up whatever's left standing. And if the Ocular Swarm is out (let alone multiples), that becomes a potential for combo-ing even more.

Variant Strategies:

Heroic Infinitor

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

Whoa, here's a change of pace. With this variant, Infinitor's fight is more like the Dreamer, where you're not trying to defeat him, but to help him overcome his inner demons, by punching them in the face. Unlike the Dreamer, he's not a helpless kid, and can fight on his own. Also unlike the Dreamer, you can still continue the fight if he is defeated, but don't expect to win if this happens. It's a really neat idea in theory, but in practice it has a few wrinkles that make it a bit less enjoyable.

Tormented Ally
First off: Crushing Cage is gone, and good riddance. Second: Infinitor is a hero target (but also a villain character card; the interactions here are confusing, to say the least) with 27 health and a permanent +1 damage boost. He starts with H Manifestations in play, and all Manifestations are indestructible and reduce damage taken by 1. Infinitor moves any Manifestations he "destroys" with his own personal damage under his card, he always attacks one of your choice at the end of his turn for 2, and you win when there's no Manifestations in play. On paper, it's a neat idea where the goal is to help him overcome his inner demons and run heavy support while softening up the enemies, but in practice you mostly just end up with the game "solved" while you wait for Whispers of Oblivion to turn up and actually confirm the win.

Advanced: Increasing damage dealt to Infinitor by 2 is bad on its own, of course, because that means that the Manifestations deal more damage to him. What makes it worse is the fact that Infinitor can self-damage with his deck quite easily, and that doing so is in fact an ideal strategy for finishing the game. Be sure to protect him as much as you can here!

Overcome by Manifestations
If you "lose" by letting Infinitor get destroyed, he flips and heals up to 90 health, destroying all the now-vulnerable Manifestations he had saved up (but not the ones still in play). On this side, all Manifestations heal him for 4 if they would enter play, but destroy themselves before that happens (prompting the Ocular Swarm to do its thing). Infinitor also area attacks for 2 at the end of each turn, with a follow-up irreducible self-damage for 2 on anything that got hurt this way. It adequately conveys the intent here of "you screwed up royally and should feel bad about it", but it's also the kind of fight that could quite reasonably never end if both sides maintain their defenses. Infinitor has ridiculous self-heal on this side, but doesn't have that much damage potential and can't set up forever like you can. Still, the ideal counterplay for this side is "don't be on this side".

Advanced: Manifestations are still indestructible! The ones he had saved up still go to the trash because they're not Manifestations while stockpiled, but this does mean any other Manifestations he plays heal him for 4 while also attacking on their own. This does mean his deck will eventually run dry of Manifestations and he won't be able to milk them for healing, but if you're still fighting after that, then stop playing the Scholar. Please. For the sake of your incapacitated friends who left the table ages ago to find something else more reasonable and shorter to play, like Risk.

Challenge - Drawn to the Edge: This challenge has different effects on each side, but the Overcome by Manifestations side just says villain damage is irreducible and can't be redirected, cementing that side as the BAD ENDING. Tormented Ally starts their turn by revealing the top card of the deck. If it's a Manifestation, it comes into play, otherwise it shuffles back in and full heals all Manifestations. This is awful for two reasons: first, because you can no longer rely on deck control to just throw Whispers of Oblivion out there and instantly win. Second, because this means the deck may run out on its own, at which point Infinitor lacks the damage to reliably kill Manifestations that full heal every turn at the start of his turn. If you have ways to redirect damage he deals, or to force him to deal damage (like a Compulsion Canister), use them!

Good Strategies:
  • Heavy Support: I mean, that's a gimme. Damaging Manifestations to soften them up is fine, but keeping Infinitor alive is the real way to go here. Anything that can heal a hero target, reduce damage to them, redirect damage, and so forth is another tool to keep Infinitor alive and swinging. Boosting his damage or making it irreducible is nice, but what's even better is Twist the Ether (as always) to amplify his damage to Manifestations, while softening the blows to your team.
  • Deck Control: Once all the Manifestations are low enough in health that Infinitor can take them down with literally anything, your goal is to get a card to the top of his deck that can deal the finishing blow to all of them at once. Whispers of Oblivion is the usual card to do so with, although Machinations of a Madman can work in a pinch if you're through most of his deck.

Bad Strategies:
  • Glass Cannons: Even without the main character card helping, this is still a fight with Infinitor, which means all of his Manifestations are just as aggressive as before, and will have zero problems with putting a reckless character face down in the space mud without a second thought. Furthermore, it doesn't matter how hard you hit a Manifestation, so long as you end up dealing at least 3 damage to them counting their reducer, because Infinitor has to be the one to deal the final blow. You can launch them as far into negative health as you want, but don't bleed yourself out in the process.
  • Hero Character Card Effects: What? Uh... okay, this section's mostly explaining how Heroic Infinitor functions. He is a villain character card, but he is a hero target. This means that he isn't a villain target, so any attacks like Grievous Hail Storm don't hit him, but it also means he is not a hero character card, so you can't use defensive measures like, say, Energy Bracer on him. Many support options still work just fine, just make sure the ones you plan on using actually DO work.

Notable Cards
  • Whispers of Oblivion: As mentioned above, once you've damaged all the Manifestations enough, this card effectively reads "The heroes win". Don't worry about the on-destroy effect, because as it happens, you can't destroy indestructible things. Moving them under Infinitor's character card doesn't count as destroying them either. As a result, you basically want all the Manifestations to be dropped to at least 1 health, and then fish for this card as hard as you possibly can.
  • Twisted Miscreation: Still a jerk, but now they're a jerk you can't reliably handle by flipping Infinitor and having him destroy it for you. That damage reducer effect means that Infinitor can only ever deal 1 damage to them, so chipping them down becomes a bit harder unless you give Infinitor irreducible damage somehow. Without it, you're basically reduced to hitting each one three times, directly or with Infinitor's help, before it can die. At least you can just Fire Blast any other Manifestation and not have to care at all.
  • Ocular Swarm: Making all the Manifestations indestructible does have one other beneficial side effect: the Ocular Swarm is suddenly a completely blank card that happens to have 4 health. The only instance in which they actually matter as a card play is when Infinitor is Overcome by Manifestations and you're not on Advanced, in which case he not only heals for 4, but he chains this into either another Manifestation-heal or into an area attack for 1. Neither of these is that bad if you can already handle that side's normal turn, mind you.

Last edited by Kalir; 07-07-2017 at 12:25 PM.
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Old 05-24-2016, 02:44 PM
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Deadline

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

Hey Gloomweaver, good news: you're no longer the easiest 3 difficulty on the market! Deadline is kind of like a weirder more technical version of Baron Blade, whose method of screwing with the heroes is to simply remove cards from the environment deck. It's an interesting idea, but in practice he'll do almost as much nothing as Baron Blade does, especially if you're on point with keeping his doomsday timer in check.

The timer in question is his Catastrophe cards, all ongoings. They all do things at the start of the turn, but too many in play causes Deadline to flip, destroying them all and removing cards from the environment deck. I'll discuss the particulars below, but long story short, don't let Catastrophes build up.

Radical Peacemonger
Deadline starts with one of his two (AND ONLY TWO) end of turn attack cards in play, Atomic End-Glaive. Past that, he does barely anything. At the end of the turn, if there's at least 3 Catastrophes in play he flips, otherwise he plays another card. Which... eh? Okay. He can theoretically stack up a lot of Catastrophes this way, but in practice that usually won't happen, and Deadline won't do much, not least because all Catastrophes do things at the start of the turn.

Advanced: I never really looked at this until today, but WHAT. Each Catastrophe you destroy makes Deadline attack everyone for 3 infernal. I mean, if you have damage reducers up that's still not too bad, but even so. One might even consider not destroying Catastrophes this way, since they don't damage you on the flipside.

Remorseful Eco-Vandal
Okay, so. Start of turn, Deadline flips if there's no Catastrophes in play, which will always happen unless the environment accelerates the villain deck. End of turn (i.e when he flips), all environment cards die, then all Catastrophe cards die, then Deadline uses the number of Catastrophes destroyed to hit everyone for X irreducible fire and to remove X cards from the environment deck. That's your alt loss condition, by the way. The good news is, even if it's irreducible, fire damage is still one of the easier ones for heroes to handle.

Advanced: Guilt, the strongest weapon. Each Environment card destroyed causes heroes to self-damage for 1 psychic. Which in practice makes this like a weird environment-based Technological Singularity. Not too bad if you're keeping the environment in check even halfway, which against Deadline? You barely have anything else to aim that damage at, so why not?

Challenge - Endling Workmanship: Legit had to look up which cards in his deck this affected. That would be the starting Atomic End-Glaive, the Pandemonium Key, the Auto-Armor Caster, and the Ataxia Sphere. All of these are awful things to have out, doubly so when you can't destroy them. However, your overall strategy doesn't change that much. I'd say the biggest threat is the Auto-Armor Caster, so bring multiple attacks a round to punch past it. Deck control doesn't help much since Deadline plays so many cards.

Good Strategies:
  • Ongoing Destruction: Deadline only really does things if he gets ongoings out. Your job is to prevent that from happening. This stalls out his timer more than long enough for the rest of your heroes to do their job. I really don't think this one needs spelling out more than that, even if the ongoings themselves aren't always dangerous (Subduction Super-zone is pain, as is Magnetic Pole Shift, but thats about it).
  • All-Out Offense: Again, the only end of turn attacks Deadline has outside of flipping are two cards in his deck, one of which starts in play and is therefore easy to kill off quickly. Deadline attacks even less frequently than Baron Blade in practice, which is honestly kind of impressive. And his defenses aren't as good either, so yeah, just go ham and punch Deadline a lot until he falls down.

Bad Strategies:
  • Trash Dependence: One thing Deadline does a lot, and does well, is force heroes to shuffle their trash into their decks. For, say, Tachyon or Nightmist, this is obviously awful and you should plan around not having your trash on hand. Anyone who doesn't need a nice healthy discard pile, though? They love those shuffles! I've never seen the Wraith play so many copies of Impromptu Invention.
  • Villain Accelerating Environments: Deadline already has the Pandemonium Key to have the environment accelerate himself. You don't need the environment making his attacks even worse, and you DEFINITELY don't want it keeping him on Remorseful Eco-Vandal more for more than one turn. Then again, if you think Deadline is too easy, Rook City would be a hilarious way to spice him up.

Notable Cards
  • Magnetic Pole Shift: Milling isn't as scary in Sentinels of the Multiverse as it is in the game that coined the term, but it's still annoying (or it would be except HAHA TRASH SHUFFLES THANKS NERD). Anyway this destroys hero ongoings and equipment so there's still that to worry about. Probably a top priority to deal with.
  • Auto-Armor Caster: ...Huh. It's a Mobile Defense Platform, except lower priority. Which, oddly enough, contributes to its survival a bit more. I wonder if just that possibility of leaving it alive renders it more overall effective than the Mobile Defense Platform? ...Probably not. Anyway yeah, if you open your turn with an area attack then you should have no trouble attacking Deadline himself even with this in play. If you lack those, take down the Auto-Armor Caster first.
  • Unnatural Disaster: Obligatory super-deploy villain card. Given the high number of Catastrophes in Deadline's deck it's best to assume that it will deploy a full complement of them whenever it appears. The worst time to see this card, bar none, is right before Deadline would've already flipped, turning a tolerable 3 point Catastrophe barrage into a horrifyingly strong 7 damage one. Surprise volcano!

Last edited by Kalir; 04-13-2017 at 07:18 PM.
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Old 05-25-2016, 11:39 AM
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Kaargra Warfang

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

Ready for some difficulty whiplash? Kaargra Warfang is arguably the hardest villain in the game, although that's less due to her being a vicious and deadly opponent (although she is) and more because the rules of the game change significantly when facing her. After all, this is a gladiatorial arena! The goal isn't to defeat the villain, but to look good doing it!

To clarify: 10 of the cards in her deck are set aside to form the Title deck, and the Crowd's Favor card is set aside as a scorekeeping area. Both the heroes and the Bloodsworn have a favor pool, and if either side reaches 20 in their favor, they win, end of story. You gain favor for doing a lot of things, mostly damage and destroying targets, and the Bloodsworn gain favor for much the same. Needless to say, gaining favor is a good idea, but don't worry too much about it early on.

Far more important is to seize Titles. These are effectively in-game achievements, and they come with stat boosts and adding favor. Of course, the Bloodsworn can gain them as easily as you can, which is straight up not okay. Once a target claims a title, it's very hard to pry it loose from them save for defeating them. And hey, would you rather your team has rad boosts, or theirs? That's what I thought. There is never not a good time to claim a title.

Bloodsworn Master
Moving on to the big woman herself, who, like Miss Information, isn't a target on this side. She begins play with one of her Gladiators out and fighting, which is fortunate, because if there aren't any Gladiators at the start of the turn, she flips and that is very, very bad. But at the end of the turn, she plays an extra card, some of which might let her flip, and just like the Chairman, her deck is by design much smaller, but without the possibility of cheating. So she WILL flip at some point, you just have to hope it's sooner rather than later.

Advanced: On this side, she adds 2 favor to the Bloodsworn favor pool at the end of every villain turn. This puts an Advanced Baron Blade tier time limit on your fight with her, and forces you to bring down Gladiators even faster just to get her defeated and out of the way. Except you also don't want this, but we'll get to that.

Eager Combatant
That 40 health she has on this side is a tremendous wall towards your progress, simply because you can't actually win until defeating her. As a target, she can gain titles, and she stands a decent chance of gaining them given her two attacks each turn, one for H and one for H minus 1. She still plays cards twice as fast here, too. Just in case you were hoping for a bit of respite. That said, 40 HP isn't a whole lot in the long run, especially not if you have lots of damage dealers like you really ought to. Focus on bringing her down over her Gladiators if your favor is good enough, or honestly even if it isn't.

Advanced: End of villain turn, she takes the top two cards of the Title deck and gives them to herself. This is exactly as bad as it sounds, and unless you're incredibly good at taking Title cards yourself, it will ruin the hell out of your day by making her already decent fighting abilities even better.

Challenge - Illustrious Bloodsworn: Whenever a Gladiator enters play, they take the top card of the Title deck for themselves. Again, seizing titles is how you win this mode, so this is a pretty big thorn in your side! You'll have to earn these titles the hard way, but there's no real way around this aside from just fighting past the Gladiators like you would anyway. It's just a harder Kaargra Warfang without any real change to strategy.

Good Strategies:
  • Grabbing Titles: I cannot stress enough how key this is. Certain titles are predisposed to certain heroes (Tachyon will get Chaos Lord, Mr. Fixer will take The Living Weapon, Omnitron-X can snag Death-Caller) but really just grab as many of them as your hands can reach. The only one that is actively detrimental for you is the Mindbreaker, and even there it mostly evens out to good if your team has decent defenses. Don't worry if it goes against your instincts for optimal play in any other match, because this isn't any other match.
  • Heavy Damage: The best way to grab lots of favor is simply to pump out as much damage as possible. This also makes grabbing quite a few titles easier. And if you're high on favor and just need to bring down Kaargra Warfang, hey look, your high damage makes that easier too! Just keep swinging like a maniac and put those titles to use!

Bad Strategies:
  • Rushing Favor Early: Yes, the Bloodsworn will usually have a significant favor lead over you to begin with. Not to worry, Fickle Fans will keep you in business. In fact, since there's no way to remove favor from the game, going too ham on favor gains early on makes Fickle Fans actively detrimental. You can go for favor once your team has plenty of titles and is ready to fight Kaargra Warfang directly.
  • Heavy Setup: Y'know what doesn't get the crowd pumped? Spending three turns putting together a beautiful engine of game and deck control. Y'know what does? PUNCHING GIANT MONSTERS RIGHT IN THEIR FACES AND LAUGHING ABOUT IT. Make sure you can contribute to putting on a good show quickly out of the gate.

Notable Cards
  • Bloodsworn Judgement: While Ashclaw R'Velos can block damage on targets he hits, Bloodsworn Judgement is the only one-shot that destroys hero gear. Which, hey, each player destroys one of their choice? That's honestly not too bad. And yes, putting the top card of the title deck on the target with the highest health is completely evil, but that's if any cards still remain IN the title deck. Once all ten titles are out, that deck stops existing.
  • Impassable Andolin: My favorite Gladiator to face, if only because it's way easy for him to be used to gain the Seeker title. And his attack, while weirdly aimed, is usually going to be directed at the hero best suited to handle it. And H minus 2 melee? Whatever, kid. Bop him on the nose to grab the Seeker and then just let him do whatever.
  • "Get Back In There!": You will see this card, and it will force Kaargra Warfang to flip. Hell, it probably won't actually revive Gladiators when played, solely because there's so many of them and they're all beefy enough to take a beating. There's two copies of this in her deck, so plan your defeat of her Eager Combatant side around that, and try not to do it if you know there's still a copy or two kicking around in there.

Last edited by Kalir; 04-13-2017 at 07:21 PM.
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Old 05-27-2016, 11:34 AM
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Progeny

Danger Levels
  • Minions: None
  • Direct Offense: High
  • Disruption: Middling
  • Defenses: High
  • Ongoings: High
  • Deck Randomness: Middling
  • Nemesis: K.N.Y.F.E.

I've always liked stance-fighting characters, who have to switch out their tools to match the situation at hand. In any game, really. So here we have a villain who does that! And the designer probably meant for them to be a really imposing dangerous fight, akin to Iron Legacy but with more survivability... but in the end, without Iron Legacy's immediate pressure, Progeny ends up being only slightly harder than Infinitor or Plague Rat. Still a really neat fight, though.

Progeny relies on its Scion cards to pose the most threat. Each of these is basically an Ongoing card without the Ongoing keyword, providing Progeny a slight but significant boost to its offenses or defenses. Flame gives a damage boost, Storm accelerates card plays, Blight forces players to discard when it takes damage, and Frost reacts to taking damage by self-healing. It can maintain two at once (destroying an old one when a third enters play), and each one played does an area attack for 1.

Vassal of Destruction
Progeny begins play with only one Scion card out, but don't expect that to last very long. As a villain, Progeny's actual attack is straightforward enough: it just hits everyone for 2 damage every turn. It only flips if a hero character card (NOT hero target) falls under 10 HP. Don't worry, this WILL happen sooner or later. Start off the match by carefully managing his Scions to fit your options and setting up as much as you are able.

Advanced: Normally, when a third Scion card enters play, it destroys one of the old ones, and two of Progeny's ongoings take one with them when they self destruct at the start of the villain turn. Guess what stops happening in Advanced.

Cosmic Annihilator
Progeny stops with the area attacks on this side in favor of aggressively hunting the weakest hero and murdering them until they die from it with H minus 1 attacks. So the bad news is that Progeny will almost certainly bring down at least one hero. The good news is that the longer you keep that one hero alive, the more time you buy for the rest of your team. Progeny's deck will still provide area attacks, so you're not 100% safe this way, but it's a start.

Advanced: Remember how Progeny probably already has all eight Scion cards out and therefore like three card plays? D'you think maybe it needs another card play at the end of the turn? Cuz here it is. Try not to die.

Challenge - Ultimate Scion: Okay, on its own this reads like a lighter version of Advanced mode. Scion cards stack up to 4 instead of 2, but they can still be destroyed by Progeny's other ongoings (or your own hero shenanigans). However, this one's not limited by which side Progeny is on. Even when on Cosmic Annihilator, you'll be facing 4 Scions at once with no good recourse from its deck. Bring some VERY strong villain card destroy effects, like Cedistic Dissonant or End of Days.

Good Strategies:
  • Scion Prioritization: Progeny is a match all about bad choices, and in an ideal situation you wouldn't have ANY scion cards to deal with. Instead, what will happen is a Scion card will come out and you'll have to decide which of the two pre-existing Scion cards its safest to replace it with. As a general rule, go with Frost if you're still setting up and not doing regular damage, Blight if you have lots of cards you're never going to use, Flame if your damage reducers are up and running, and Storm basically never (in practice it usually just means lots of area attacks or minor attacks, unless it drops an ongoing or Beginning of the End).
  • Damage Reduction: Obvious Futility aside, this is the best way by far to neutralize the threat Progeny poses. Given there are no other targets in its deck, and its disruption game is solid but not unstoppable, your primary focus should be on surviving its constant attacks. Once your defenses are up, you can fight normally, but you'll want to keep the reducers in play as long as you can.

Bad Strategies:
  • No Ongoing Destruction: Progeny's ongoings are all bad news, and The Inevitable both searches the deck for one and does an area attack. Obvious Futility sticks around, increases its defenses, and makes all its attacks irreducible, which is BAD, so save your ongoing destruction for that... but the other ongoings are almost as bad. Yes, they destroy themselves and a Scion card at the start of the villain turn, but they take a bunch of hero stuff with them. To make matters worse, Hour of Reckoning blocks card plays, which are what most non-Visionary heroes would use to actually destroy ongoings.
  • Deck Control: Progeny simply plays cards too fast and searches its own deck too often to make constant deck control a viable option. Yes, you can dodge some of the meaner cards this way, but Progeny doesn't really have non-mean cards in its deck. Better to spend the time you'd be using decksearching on setting up, preparing defenses, or just hitting the damn thing.

Notable Cards
  • Time of Tribulations: If played as a legitimate sole card play, this card is almost harmless. If played through Scion of the Storm's end of turn play, it's even more harmless. If played through The Inevitable at the start of the turn while Scion of the Storm is out, you all die. My point here is that if it does whatever it does, maybe don't actually burn an ongoing destroy when it rolls around to your turn, especially if you have equipment to burn. At the start of the turn, it'll destroy a Scion card for you, and that's always nice.
  • Beginning of the End: This card is interesting, because it's basically a lighter version of Devastating Aurora, using H instead of all for the number of each thing it destroys. But when you compare the rest of Progeny's deck to the rest of Citizen Dawn's deck, Progeny's disruption options are much lighter and nicer, which it makes up for with its raw damage output. Just something to think about, I guess.
  • Elemental Outburst: Progeny has 3 copies of each of its deck-search oneshots and 3 copies of this card, which is its only attack that prioritizes the highest health hero, doing so for 1 fire, cold, and lightning damage. If that hero has damage reducers, whatever, it's fine. If they don't, or if Progeny has Obvious Futility, Time of Tribulations, or both when this comes out, good news! You're not going to be the highest health hero for much longer!

Last edited by Kalir; 05-22-2017 at 11:36 AM.
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Old 05-29-2016, 11:43 AM
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Dok'Thorath Capital

Checklist
  • Hero Support: Yes (Abject Refugees, Defiant Looters, Rebel Headquarters)
  • Hero Disruption: Yes (Defiant Looters)
  • Field Damage Modifiers: Yes (Authority Ziggurat, Rebel Headquarters)
  • Villain Acceleration: Yes (Authority Ziggurat)
  • Hostile Targets: Yes (Freedom Fighters, Gene-Bound Ravagers, Thorathian Military)
  • Indiscriminate Field Damage: Yes (Freedom Fighters, Gene-Bound Ravagers, Thorathian Military, Orbital Bombardment)
  • Alternate Loss Condition: No

I'm sorry, Dok'Thorath. Thematically you're a cool idea. You're Star Wars! And involving a popular villain since day one, Grand Warlord Voss, no less! And I love the Block, which has a similar idea in the warring factions thing. But I am forced to admit... you are a bad environment. I know you're trying to help, but you're bad at it. And you don't even do this in interesting ways, like the Ruins of Atlantis. You do it in stupid identical ways. Over half of your deck is "hit everything for 2 damage", and two more cards on top of that are "start of turn hit everything for 4 instead". Almost all the strategy I care to name could be summarized in that sentence.

Good Strategies:
  • Damage Reduction: Dok'Thorath Capital is all about those 2 damage universal sprays. It's just a fact of life: act on the assumption that on the environment turn, everything is going to take at least 2 damage. So if you can reduce that damage on each turn it happens... great! Good. You might not die.
  • Environment Deck Control: That said, the keywords involved on those 2 damage attacks mean that controlling what happens with the deck does matter. There's more than a few helpful cards in there, the most important of which is the Rebel Headquarters. Get that and three Freedom Fighters out, and you suddenly are directing those constant sprays of 2 damage at the villain instead of yourself.

Bad Strategies:
  • Environment-Cooperating Villains: The Authority Ziggurat is just as valuable for the villain as its equivalent is for the heroes. And unlike the Rebel Headquarters, there's not two instances of a card that explicitly destroys it. And there are a LOT more cards that hurt you than that don't in Dok'Thorath. If a villain can either weather the damage from the environment or make it worse for you than for themselves, Dok'Thorath will go from bad to worse.
  • No Environment Destruction: There are two ways to destroy the threats of Dok'Thorath: either deplete their HP, or use a card that destroys environment targets. If it doesn't have HP, it also doesn't have a destroy condition, FOR SOME DUMB REASON. And you cannot afford to let the Authority Ziggurat or an Orbital Bombardment just sit there unattended.

Notable Cards
  • Orbital Bombardment: I mean, the good news is that it still gives you a turn to deal with it. So do a lot of really mean and awful cards that still afford the possibility of destroying it early. Wait, let me try again. The good news is that it deals 4 damage to everything except Thorathians! Except that they're already the hardiest targets in the environment deck and it also kills the Abject Refugees. Okay, never mind, this card is just painful.
  • Abject Refugees: Hey, cool, start of turn everyone draws a card. Except you'll have to redirect damage from these guys almost constantly, and it'll be mostly the environment deck's fault. At least Dr. Tremata and Tony Taurus have the decency to do their assistance at the end of the environment turn. That said, the Abject Refugees are mostly easier to keep alive if there's not a lot of villain hostility towards the environment. So there's that going for them.
  • Defiant Looters: Honestly, in any other deck, the effect of this card I wouldn't even mind at all. Yeah, top-deck discards suck, but turning that into a draw if it's equipment is kind of weirdly acceptable to some heroes? Expatriette, in particular, would love that. And as a disruption effect it's really weak, so it's not a huge problem either. I dunno, this card just kinda feels... there. And they discard the top card of all decks, so they can capitalize on villain deck control! (Or chuck their own Rebel Headquarters into the trash.)
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Old 05-30-2016, 04:29 PM
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The Enclave of the Endlings

Checklist
  • Hero Support: Yes (Bloogo, Slamara)
  • Hero Disruption: Yes (Bloogo, Baahsto)
  • Field Damage Modifiers: Yes (Jansa Vi Dero, Immutus)
  • Villain Acceleration: Yes (Slamara)
  • Hostile Targets: Yes (Baahsto, Frazzat, Gruum, Korruption, Orbo, Phrentat, Szreem, Urdid, Venox)
  • Indiscriminate Field Damage: Yes (Korruption, Venox)
  • Alternate Loss Condition: No

If nothing else, you have to love the Enclave of the Endlings for its campy 80's sci-fi flavor. I mean, just LOOK at these beautiful dorks. Who among you didn't cook up similar fictional aliens as kids? It's the better of the two Wrath of the Cosmos environments for sure, but not by that much. This place is harder than the Final Wasteland for sure, simply for how beefy all of the targets here are by comparison.

Good Strategies:
  • High Damage Output: Basically all the strategies for the Final Wasteland also apply to the Enclave of the Endlings. You want to be able to stand up to the punishment the endlings will throw out with your own high damage. If anything, this applies even moreso here, since the cards here favor the environment more than either the villain or heroes, and Jansa Vi Dero can keep her Endlings alive for a LONG time if you let her.
  • High Defenses: Quite a few of the Endlings have attacks that chain off of each other, meaning if the first attack connects, they throw a second one. In practice, they all do the same amount of damage, but it does mean if you reduce only the first instance somehow (Cortex Hyperstimulator, I think it's called?) it's as solid as Heavy Plating. Either way, same deal.

Bad Strategies:
  • No Environment Destruction: Unlike the Final Wasteland, if you try to fight the Enclave of the Endlings on fair terms, you'll end up losing more often than not, or at the very least making no progress towards taking down the villain. Their defenses can build up to an incredible height, and sometimes you need to learn when to cut your losses and just Flash Flood or Emergency Evac.
  • Finishing Off Villain Targets: Just like usual, the environment will do more than enough to bring down weakened villain targets for you. And the endlings will sure as hell try to demand your attention almost constantly, so give them a bit of it... but only AFTER ensuring they'll swing at the villains over you.

Notable Cards
  • Bloogo: This text is really confusing. Long story short: Bloogo will pick the weakest thing each turn and move next to it, and it must move each turn. While its there, attacks to its buddy are intercepted by Bloogo. This is one instance where you DO want to finish off villain targets, so that Bloogo starts blocking for your team instead of theirs.
  • Slamara: Shoot, which deck was it that had the Atlantean Font of Power except each turn? Cuz here it is again, except as a 7 health target. Honestly not a bad idea to leave alive, unless you're playing a character like Fanatic or Setback, where that sort of thing could very easily do more harm than good, or if the villain deck is one that REALLY doesn't need accelerating.
  • Hall of the Terminarch: It's not often you see a self-accelerating environment, but the Enclave of the Endlings certainly does the job. And with how tough everything here is, that's REALLY not something you want to deal with. If you have an abundance of environment destruction effects, save them for cards like this or the Endling Refuge.
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Old 06-08-2016, 11:44 AM
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Mini Pack 3 released. Which means I'll be doing write-ups for Guise, Wager Master, and Omnitron IV soon enough.

I mean, I'm also doing Golden Sun in the LP forum and also moving. But details.
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Old 06-08-2016, 12:03 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Kalir View Post
Mini Pack 3 released. Which means I'll be doing write-ups for Guise, Wager Master, and Omnitron IV soon enough.
Guise is pretty intricate; Wager Master can be. And Omnitron is mainly interesting for the bizarre keyword interaction of Omnitron x3 games. (Omnitronc?)
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  #116  
Old 06-22-2016, 04:25 PM
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I'm playing this on my stream tonight. Anyone here is welcome to invade my twitch channel and demand to be let in.

twitch.tv/tyrmcohl
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  #117  
Old 07-20-2016, 02:54 PM
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The current Weekly One-Shot in the digital version of this is Dark Watch Expatriette, Dark Watch Mr. Fixer, and Dark Watch Nightmist against The Chairman in Rook City.

seems legit
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  #118  
Old 08-08-2016, 12:48 PM
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Oh right.

Guise

Checklist
  • Reliable Damage: No
  • Ongoing/Environment Destruction: Yes (Retcon)
  • Team Support Abilities: Kinda (I Can Do That, Too!, Uh, Yeah, I'm That Guy!)
  • Big-Ass Attack Option: If you do it right (Guise the Barbarian, Blatant Reference, Super Ultra Kawaii!!, Selling Out)
  • Deck Control: Not really (Gimmicky Character)
  • Best Card Ever: Best Card Ever! (Best Card Ever!)

Forgive me if I don't commit to Guise's schtick that much in writing this post. Given how popular Deadpool's gotten these days, it's no surprise that we get a Deadpool-inspired character in this game. Once you get past the novelty, Guise is still a pretty solid hero, and one of the few instances of a hero that really gets close to Tachyon's domain in how he handles.

Strengths:
  • Rapid Card Play: Guise has a lot of cards that let him play more cards, or even burn cards without playing them for more damage with Blatant Reference. His base power also lets him play a card (or draw one if he needs to, which he might). It isn't out of the question at all for Guise to throw three cards a turn if he really wants to. And Guise's deck isn't quite as diluted as Tachyon's either, so many of those cards will do actual things.
  • Self-Destroying Ongoings: Guise has two kinds of cards: one-shots, and ongoings that destroy at the start of his turn. This sounds like a weakness, but as you can probably guess, these cards tend to be REALLY STRONG to make up for their ephemerality. The secret benefit to this is that you can dodge a lot of ongoing destroy effects by virtue of getting Guise's stuff, since it wasn't gonna last anyway.

Weaknesses:
  • Card Draw Dependent: A base power of "draw or play a card and also swing for 1 melee cuz why not" would be ridiculous on most heroes, but trust me, Guise NEEDS that for his deck to be any good. Just like Tachyon wants to build up a big discard full of Bursts, Guise wants a hand full of cards to sling around like crazy via Selling Out or Super Ultra Kawaii!! which means drawing as much as you can, and sometimes skipping your card play.
  • Situational Cards: Yes, Guise can link a bunch of his cards together to make himself an unstoppable destroyer for one round. But most of the time, you won't be doing that, because all you have to work with is Gimmicky Character and Say Cheese! and you don't want the extra card plays those can afford, because you don't have anything else worth doing with them. It's okay to just skip the play phase and draw, Guise! Just ask Fanatic!

Notable Cards
  • Best Card Ever!: Of course I have to mention this, it's only the Best Card Ever! I mean, you draw two cards AND play a card with it. That's RIDICULOUS. AND it heals Guise and he gets to punch a dude for 2. You might not want to instantly play it, though: maybe you're better served saving it for Super Ultra Kawaii!! or after Guise the Barbarian.
  • Lemme See That...: Guise has three cards that copy hero abilities, but this one's different from the other two in that it doesn't copy. Instead, it straight up reassigns ownership of that gear to Guise for the round. In some instances this is awesome (a spare instrument from the Argent Adept or one of Expatriette's spare loaded guns) and in some instances you're just being an ass (DO NOT STEAL OMNITRON-X'S ARMOR).
  • Super Ultra Kawaii!!: Okay remember how Fanatic's Divine Focus card is completely insane because it refers to every turn? Super Ultra Kawaii!! is like that (to a lesser degree, only works on hero turns and only if your hand has more than H cards) but even dumber: you get to play another card. Playing a card during every hero's turn is KIND OF INSANE. Of course, you need lots of cards drawn before then, and you have to burn a few card plays getting cool ongoings out to make them better (Guise the Barbarian or X-TREEEEEEEEME!!!) but it's worth it.

Variant Strategies:
Santa Guise
What's the best gift that Guise can give other characters? The ability to handle like Guise! It's Gift-Mas Time! This character has two powers. First, it places cards face-down from the top of the deck in each character's play area. The second power lets you flip all the cards in a given area face-up. This, of course, let's Guise do their own normal schtick at the cost of unpredictability, but it also lets every other character do this! Additionally, it can dodge sudden equipment-wipes by leaving presents around for everyone to open up. The bad news is that you never really know what you're getting, so be careful around unpredictable decks like Fanatic or Setback.

Last edited by Kalir; 08-01-2017 at 11:13 AM.
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  #119  
Old 08-09-2016, 12:12 PM
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Wager Master

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

Oh. Um. I guess if you're gonna have Deadpool as a hero inspiration, Mister Mxysptlk is a reasonable nemesis? And just like their inspiration, Wager Master's fight is just weird and nonsensical. Like... I don't even know what a reasonable strategy would be. It's possible to win or lose the game during setup. How do you even form a strategy against something like that?

To clarify: you will only sometimes beat Wager Master through damage, and sometimes through the assorted Condition cards they play. Each Condition, in addition to its ingame effects, provides some alternate way for you to either lose or win the game. These tend to mix up the actual strategy of the game in pretty impressive ways: for example, Who Are You Fighting? makes it so if Wager Master dies, you lose.

A Cosmic Challenge
Wager Master starts with H Conditions in play, and these Conditions are indestructible. However, many of Wager Master's cards can turn any cards he has in play face-down, leaving them in play but inert and indestructible. He returns hero cards to their hands for each face-down card, and flips at the start of the turn if there's at least 2 face-down cards in play. My suggestion here is do whatever, because he'll flip eventually. Wager Master only has 51 health (except you might not want to deplete it until you can get past Who Are You Fighting?) and not much in the way of attacks here, so conventional combat is easy enough.

Advanced: Haha never mind he reduces all damage he takes by 2. So instead, just humor the little oddball and mess with his Conditions until he flips. Or bring irreducible damage I guess.

Increased Stakes
Upon flipping, Wager Master invokes the elemental power of salt and flips all his cards in play face-down. This is the only way to flip a lot of his Conditions, mind you. He'll start his turn by shuffling these cards and flipping one face up and playing it, effectively giving him two card plays each turn. Face-down cards aren't indestructible here, for the heroes it matters for (Argent Adept and Tempest can do stuff about that) and he flips back in the highly unlikely event all his cards are face up. Oh, and end of turn area attack for 2 energy. Cool. I advocate sticking to your guns and doing whatever.

Advanced: He heals himself for X+1, with X being the number of hero ongoings in play. Again, once you dodge Who Are You Fighting? that's still not a huge amount honestly, unless you're doing ridiculously high setup against Wager Master for some reason. (That reason being you're fighting Wager Master and don't care what's going on.)

Challenge - All Fun and Pain: Look, I'd LIKE to say that this mode makes Wager Master a really interesting high-aggression challenge that can't be easily beaten by just flipping all of his cards, lest you run the risk of self-damaging yourself to bits. At the end of the day, you're still fighting Wager Master, though. My prevailing strategy below still stands.

Good Strategies:
  • Do Whatever: Gonna steal a quote from The Netrunner Project here: “look, I’m basically going to play Sentinels of the Multiverse like a glitched computer so you’ll probably be really confused for a while and then win.” As a conventional foe, Wager Master is barely a threat. And as an unconventional one... honestly he's still not much of a threat! Most of his conditions that let him win result from things you're already trying to avoid anyway, with the exception of Who Are You Fighting?, and he provides more than a few ways for you to win, too.
  • Deck Control: If you really want to approach this fight with the raw intent to win, you can always just sift through his deck and find the winning conditions while dodging the bad ones. This also lets you find Pick A Card, Pick A Fate and turn it into a dead card play really easily. (It's already really easy to turn into a dead card though: just pick one-shot each time. Worst case scenario, you get an Unanswerable Question.)

Bad Strategies:
  • Excessive Ongoing Destruction: Yeah, he has a lot of ongoings in his deck. Most of them are Conditions, though, and those are all indestructible. You'll have to rely on their own flip conditions if they have any. Rather than devoting your time to that, devote it to just hitting the guy you need to hit (maybe that's one of your teammates, I dunno). And of the three non-Condition ongoings, What Do You Really Know? is indestructible already.
  • Ignoring Loss Conditions: I mean, that's an easy one. If you see a thing that could make you lose the game, don't lose to it! Your goal is still to defeat Wager Master (unless it suddenly isn't), so work towards that end regularly. It's also worth noting there's only one of each of his Conditions not named Wagelings, and he'll throw a ton of them out at the start of the game, so you can usually force him to flip them all face-down just by beating up Wagelings, buying you time.

Notable Cards
  • Who Are You Fighting?: I keep mentioning this here because it's the main card in his deck that can cut off victory. He does heal up a bit when it comes out (as do all of you) so you have time to adjust your strategy accordingly and focus on building up defenses and forcing a flip. And if there's another win condition you're aiming for, the heal and card draw are just dandy and you can totally ignore the loss condition!
  • Wagelings: The only minion in Wager Master's deck. He's got four copies, and they do an area attack for 1 melee, barely noteworthy. What IS noteworthy is the fact that if there's enough of them, Wager Master instawins, and his threshold there is way more lenient than Grand Warlord Voss. If he plays nothing but Wagelings during setup (not possible with 5 heroes), he wins. The good news is these flip face-down when defeated, making them very easy to use to force Wager Master to flip himself.
  • Losing To The Odds: Talk about a disparity between artwork and effect. This has a weird combo with The New Deal, which does an end of turn attack to all heroes with even health. Okay, great, bad. But if one of his Wagelings was played between The New Deal and Losing To The Odds, it then deals everyone 1 melee damage, turning their health from odd to even, and therefore instawinning. Or if your heroes all have a damage boost, The New Deal makes you self-damage, so it goes from 3 to 4... and you instawin that way. Also who even cares about destroying non-villain targets with 4 or less health, what are you, Unity?

Last edited by Kalir; 05-11-2017 at 12:36 PM.
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  #120  
Old 08-11-2016, 05:58 PM
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Omnitron IV

Checklist
  • Hero Support: Yes (Resource Recycler)
  • Hero Disruption: Yes (Mechani-Accumulator)
  • Field Damage Modifiers: Yes (Conveyor Panels)
  • Villain Acceleration: No
  • Hostile Targets: Yes (Techno-Pursuer, Internal Defense Grid, Partial Omni-Drone)
  • Indiscriminate Field Damage: Yes (Internal Defense Grid, Partial Omni-Drone)
  • Alternate Loss Condition: No

So released alongside the most comical hero and villain of the day, we have... Omnitron, but as an environment instead of a villain or hero. Huh. It might not look like it at first, but Omnitron IV comes close to environments like Ruins of Atlantis or Dok'Thorath Capital for representing its own major threat that causes a problem to hero and villain teams alike. In fact, I usually prefer to think of this environment as a completely third team.

Worth mentioning, though, that it uses the same keywords as the previous decks for Omnitrons before it: namely, Drones, Devices, and Components. Better yet, the cards from those decks can interact with the cards from this or each other, too. It's still technically Self-Sabotage if it's an alternate reality version of yourself!

Good Strategies:
  • Multi-Target Attacks: The biggest threats in Omnitron IV are, unsurprisingly, its drones. Thankfully, they don't individually have much health, so taking them down same as any other target is usually your safest bet. Just be sure you do actually take them down, because Omnitron IV is REALLY good at taking a slight opening and running like hell with it. You'll have to make the best call as to what the most dangerous target currently out is yourself, given your team and situation. Or just hit them all at once if you can, that's good too.
  • Environment Destruction: Again, Omnitron IV is really, really good at sneaking in crazy combo attacks that throw out three or four drones at once. Conveyor Panels and Overcharged Systems, in particular, look fairly harmless as solo card plays, but the former doesn't have a destroy condition of its own (but can be destroyed via Resource Recycler, TAKE THAT DOK'THORATH) and the latter requires H plus 2 discards across the table to get rid of. And if you DO let them stick around, it'll be like that first time you died to the Rebel Flagship in FTL all over again.

Bad Strategies:
  • Equipment Reliance: The least dangerous drones are the Mechano-Accumulators, but they still destroy an equipment card at the end of the environment turn. And don't expect that you can spin it back into play via Resource Recycler, because the Mechano-Accumulator destroys that too. It's not QUITE Pervasive Red Dust levels of bad... unless you let the environment get out of control, and what have I already said on that front? Don't let that happen!
  • Minion Reliance: Of the three types of drones that do attack, two of them do area attacks (the Partial Omni-Drone does lightning so YOUR COSMIC CREST CANNOT SAVE YOU) and the third, the Techno-Pursuer, attacks the lowest and plays an environment card on a kill. To make matters worse, the Techno-Pursuer ramps up its damage the more drones are out. Between all of that, don't expect your creations to stick around very long (or if you're the Sentinels, you'll be forced to cheat even harder than you normally do). Oh, and the Internal Defense Grid shoots targets that enter play. That's always fun, right Expatriette?

Notable Cards
  • Partial Omni-Drone: Omnitron-X's nemesis within the deck, and honestly not that big of a threat if you're giving the environment the respect it deserves. However, it heals a pretty significant amount each turn, and if left alone for long enough can be a nearly unstoppable threat (I mean, until you Flash Flood it.) That said, if you have a card to mitigate its damage to you while leaving it to attack the villain (Wrest the Mind or Aggression Modulator) suddenly that crazy healing makes them a really strong ally! (I mean, until they Disrupt the Field it.)
  • Conveyor Panels: Secretly the meanest card in the deck. Remember, melee is one of the most common damage types for a lot of heroes, and it's easy to overlook that one damage immunity until it falls to Legacy or Haka to finish off the Partial Omni-Drone. And at the start of the turn, play the top card of the environment deck? Come on, everyone knows components don't last that long! All you gotta do is hit the character card of that deck... oh.
  • Resource Recycler: As you'd expect, this could be really strong if you have a lot of equipment-dependent characters whose things keep getting broken, because they're playing equipment-dependent characters. But again, at the end of the turn it revives a Mechano-Accumulator (or something worse). And if it does, that Mechano-Accumulator may very well eat more of your stuff AND the Resource Recycler, robbing you of many things, but mostly your innocence.

That's all I got. Season 1's written up. Maybe someday I'll write up Season 2... someday...
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