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Author Topic: Basic strategies for spellbook building  (Read 2827 times)

dr_steve_dillon

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Basic strategies for spellbook building
« on: September 23, 2014, 10:38:48 AM »
Been playing with the pre constructed decks for awhile, and now my 10 year old son wants to start building his own book.  Are there any basic strategies or guides out there for beginners?  Not really interested in copying other spell books from the forums, we'd like to make our own, but honestly don't know where/how to start.

Thanks!

sIKE

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Re: Basic strategies for spellbook building
« Reply #1 on: September 24, 2014, 09:34:17 AM »
There is a bunch of good stuff over in the Strategy and Tactics forum section.
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Zuberi

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Re: Basic strategies for spellbook building
« Reply #2 on: September 24, 2014, 10:48:08 AM »
The easiest way to start is to take a preconstructed spellbook and make slight alterations to it to suit your play style.

Once you're ready to build a book from scratch, I tend to approach it in the following steps:
1) What mage and strategy do I want to employ? I think about what my primary plan of attack is going to be, and how quickly I want to get it into motion. I then go through my collection and pick out the spells that could support my strategy, trying to stay in school as much as possible.
2) I think about what weaknesses my strategy has and what my opponent could do to defeat me. Then I go through my collection again and pick out the spells that could protect me from these threats.
3) I think about what types of books I am likely to face with my play group. What is currently popular with them, and how can I adapt my primary strategy to better deal with these opponents. I then go through my collection one last time to pick up any cards that I think would be good in these match ups and situations.
4) Finally, I have to go through all the cards that I've now selected for my spellbook and trim them down to 120 spellpoints, because I've definitely picked out more than that, lol. This is perhaps the hardest part.

Also, if it helps, I tend to break strategy down into the following major archetypes:
Aggro = Mage-centric, Big creatures, or Swarms of creatures
Control = Mana denial or Board control

These archetypes aren't perfect and there are many variations to a theme, but it seems to adequately explain most books. Hopefully this gives you some good general guidelines. You can also take a look in the Strategy and Tactics forum, like sIKE suggested. It has lots of good stuff.

reddawn

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Re: Basic strategies for spellbook building
« Reply #3 on: September 24, 2014, 12:08:24 PM »
Zuberi pretty much covered it.  A caveat to trimming down a deck; if you are having trouble cutting cards, be strict.  If you cannot easily justify why a card is being included, cut it. 

This takes practice/experience to get right and also depends on your access to sets.  I've written a more in-depth guide to MW openings here: http://forum.arcanewonders.com/index.php?topic=12466.0
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Maverick

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Re: Basic strategies for spellbook building
« Reply #4 on: September 24, 2014, 03:21:33 PM »
There is a consistent list of spells that I try to include in every book. May not always happen if a mage has to pay triple for it but it is a good core to strive for.

x2 Acid Ball
x2 Dissolve
x2 Dispel
x1 Seeking Dispel
x2 Torso armor of choice (I prefer Dragonscale Hauberk personally)
x1 Force Push
x1 Teleport
x1 Geyser
x1 Purify
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DaveW

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Re: Basic strategies for spellbook building
« Reply #5 on: September 28, 2014, 06:55:19 AM »
The basics that I was given when I started to play, and which I use today, include:

Try to stay within your trained schools as much as possible. That being said, there are some spells that most Mages will find handy (I usually pack at least one of many of the ones mentioned by Maverick). You may have to go out of school for some of those. For example, a Wizard generally chooses between two torso armor types... Dragonscale Hauberk and Storm Drake Hide. My Wizard will either choose one of these, or pack one each. The Wizard isn't trained in either school related to these spells, however.

Similarly, take a spell in an opposed school only with very good reason... but don't reject a spell just because of this. Once in a while, for example, I find that I put a Battle Forge in a Beastmaster book even though it costs five spellbook points to do so.

Try to limit your Creatures to 1/4 of your book in terms of spellbook points and cards. So... starting with 120 spellbook points, my personal maximum is 30. This is enough to give you the ability to have a variety of Creatures (again, most in trained schools), and helps to ensure that you will get to play many of the ones that you include during the game.

If you need to cut back on spellbook points, look at spells that you have duplicated. Do you really need a fifth or sixth Thunderift Falcon? You'll figure out where you have too many of a particular spell as you get to play. If there are cards that you never seem to cast, then you pretty much know which ones may be more expendable than others.

In terms of equipment, remember that you can not have two spells taking up the same equipment slot at the same time. Sometimes this is ok, but care should be taken that you are not wasting spellbook points this way. The example provided earlier is of having two pieces of torso armor. There are other reasonable valid duplications (three staves / wands, for example, figuring that what you need may depend on the matchup; or two identical items that is a key for the construction of the book (Johktari Beastmaster Hunting Bow, Warlock Lash of Hellfire, etc.)

In general, having a balance in spell types and spells, as well as being able to play the book using a second strategy is preferable to having the "perfect" book that works only against some Mages some of the time.

I hope this helps!
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sdougla2

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Re: Basic strategies for spellbook building
« Reply #6 on: September 28, 2014, 08:52:36 PM »
Try to stay within your trained schools as much as possible. That being said, there are some spells that most Mages will find handy (I usually pack at least one of many of the ones mentioned by Maverick). You may have to go out of school for some of those. For example, a Wizard generally chooses between two torso armor types... Dragonscale Hauberk and Storm Drake Hide. My Wizard will either choose one of these, or pack one each. The Wizard isn't trained in either school related to these spells, however.

The Wizard is trained in an element, so could be trained in one or the other or neither depending on which element he chooses.
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DaveW

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Re: Basic strategies for spellbook building
« Reply #7 on: September 28, 2014, 09:30:08 PM »
Try to stay within your trained schools as much as possible. That being said, there are some spells that most Mages will find handy (I usually pack at least one of many of the ones mentioned by Maverick). You may have to go out of school for some of those. For example, a Wizard generally chooses between two torso armor types... Dragonscale Hauberk and Storm Drake Hide. My Wizard will either choose one of these, or pack one each. The Wizard isn't trained in either school related to these spells, however.

The Wizard is trained in an element, so could be trained in one or the other or neither depending on which element he chooses.

Sorry... true. I have been mostly playing Earth Wizard lately... when I played Air or Fire, one of these were indeed in school. Sorry for misspeaking.
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Jon.Ambriz

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Re: Basic strategies for spellbook building
« Reply #8 on: October 03, 2014, 03:00:48 PM »
Been playing with the pre constructed decks for awhile, and now my 10 year old son wants to start building his own book.  Are there any basic strategies or guides out there for beginners?  Not really interested in copying other spell books from the forums, we'd like to make our own, but honestly don't know where/how to start.

Thanks!

There has been a lot of really good advice from everyone else that has posted thus far, and what I can add would be this:

Just have your son pick a mage he likes; build a book around that mage, and test it out. When you find something that doesn't work, remember it and correct that error the next time you edit that book. Then repeat the process of finding errors, or something that doesn't work in the book then correcting. It will sound like an afternoon special, but have fun building your book! This is especially true for your son. Don't worry about really complex ideas right from the outset; work towards those ideas through trial and error.
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That's a nice spell you have there. It'd be a shame if something happened to it.

Sailor Vulcan

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Re: Basic strategies for spellbook building
« Reply #9 on: October 03, 2014, 07:46:29 PM »
What I have done when I first start playing a game is that I try to make a fun and creative deck that fits my strategic playstyle as best I can, then test it, then get advice from more experienced players, rinse repeat. Once I get more experience I start making my decks much better with a lot less help.

Hope that helps!
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zorro

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Re: Basic strategies for spellbook building
« Reply #10 on: October 06, 2014, 04:02:06 AM »
Not an strategy, but my way to build them.

I usualyl try to envision my first 3-4 turns: wich cards to get, and what to archieve. Maybe an ultra agroo warlock with adramelech, of building a base with altar of talos for the warlord. I try to writte up the first turns, with diferent variations for agresive or slow oponents. That gives my my core cards.

Then i add the supporting cards... generic usefull cards as dispel and dissolve, cards to counter the ones that could cripple my book (like fire armour for a druid), etc.

And finally, i have to remove cards to avoid getting more than 120 spell points :D
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