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Author Topic: The Cursebomber Warlock  (Read 7653 times)

payprplayn

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The Cursebomber Warlock
« on: December 13, 2014, 05:45:35 PM »
I was trying to come up with a unusually constructed but playable spellbook, and after a lot of brainstorming, I had the idea for:

CursebomberA Warlock Spellbookbuilt by the OCTGN SBB
Attack3 x Fireball1 x FlameblastConjuration3 x Enchanter's Wardstone1 x Pentagram1 x Sacrificial Altar6 x Wall of BonesCreature2 x Sersiryx, Imp Familiar3 x Blood Demon6 x Darkfenne Bat1 x Otto Kronig, Master Engineer2 x Acolyte of the Bog QueenEnchantment3 x Agony1 x Enfeeble3 x Ghoul Rot2 x Magebane4 x Maim Wings2 x Marked for Death2 x Poisoned Blood1 x Arcane Corruption2 x Rust6 x Enchantment Transfusion2 x Eagle Wings1 x Rhino Hide1 x VampirismEquipment2 x Mage Wand1 x Enchanter's Ring1 x Ring of Curses1 x Sectarus, Dark Rune SwordIncantation2 x Reassemble
Total cost: 120 pts

This book eschews many traditional defensive necessities (dispel, teleport, armor, etc.) in favor of maintaining a permanent wall of skulls. The idea is that on turn one you build a wall across the board.  If you can trap your opponent in the three zones at their end, great, otherwise cut the board in half.  To keep the wall up, you have otto the engineer, a couple acolytes and dual reassemble mage wands (plus 3 extra wall sections if it comes down.   You maintain air superiority by casting lots of flyers and maiming the wings of any flyers your opponent casts.  You drop 3 wardstones to make your curses sticky, and give serserix wings, then curse your bats and use transfusions to move the curses onto the enemy.  Thoughts?
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ACG

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Re: The Cursebomber Warlock
« Reply #1 on: December 13, 2014, 06:49:08 PM »
I have tried a similar strategy as a Warlord, walling off half the board to give me time to build up my base. It didn't work (Somehow, I still won, but not because of the wall).  The problem is that the with amount of mana and time spent on the wall, your opponent can summon an enormous creature that tears down the wall and then massacres everything. Walling off the middle might work, but not as an opening strategy. Walls across 3 different zones are just impossible to maintain effectively, and will most likely leave you behind in resources.

Of course, this is just my experience as Warlord, and I was using more expensive (though also tougher) walls, so your experience may be different.

ringkichard

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Re: The Cursebomber Warlock
« Reply #2 on: December 13, 2014, 07:15:09 PM »
Just for clarity, you can't equip both Mage Wands of Reassemble simultaneously.
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Re: The Cursebomber Warlock
« Reply #3 on: December 13, 2014, 08:42:23 PM »
I just noticed the incantations section of your spellbook. Looks a little light. I get that you intend to block LOS, but no plan survives contact with the enemy. I heavily recommend the following:

Dispel (2-3)
Teleport (1-3)
Dissolve and/or Disarm and/or Explode (2-3)

The last will be especially important against Harshforge-clad warlords.

Just for clarity, you can't equip both Mage Wands of Reassemble simultaneously.

I assume the second is intended as a backup for when the first is dissolved, since (unless I misremember the rules on Spellbind) you can use the bound spell multiple times per round anyway.

Looking through the rest of your spellbook, it looks like you intend to win through overwhelming direct damage. Therefore, I would drop the Rust and Marked for Death to save space. Given the number of curses you are slinging, you should invest in Moloch's Torment or Adramelech's Torment. By the way, are you running an Arraxian Crown warlock or an Adramelech Warlock? I would strongly suggest Adramelech Warlock for this build, since your mage does not intend to be attacking.

payprplayn

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Re: The Cursebomber Warlock
« Reply #4 on: December 13, 2014, 09:42:31 PM »
I have tried a similar strategy as a Warlord, walling off half the board to give me time to build up my base. It didn't work (Somehow, I still won, but not because of the wall).  The problem is that the with amount of mana and time spent on the wall, your opponent can summon an enormous creature that tears down the wall and then massacres everything. Walling off the middle might work, but not as an opening strategy. Walls across 3 different zones are just impossible to maintain effectively, and will most likely leave you behind in resources.

Of course, this is just my experience as Warlord, and I was using more expensive (though also tougher) walls, so your experience may be different.

I hear you, and this is a concern. However, I'm hoping that by using Bone wall (and adding armor to it after the fact) I can mitigate this.  Reassemble is the most efficient heal in the game iirc, and While I'll certainly be giving them an early creature lead, I do intend to be giving them other things to worry about before long, but I haven't had a chance to playtest it yet, so It could belly-flop, but I'm gonna try going all in on the wall once.

I just noticed the incantations section of your spellbook. Looks a little light. I get that you intend to block LOS, but no plan survives contact with the enemy. I heavily recommend the following:

Dispel (2-3)
Teleport (1-3)
Dissolve and/or Disarm and/or Explode (2-3)

The last will be especially important against Harshforge-clad warlords.

Just for clarity, you can't equip both Mage Wands of Reassemble simultaneously.

I assume the second is intended as a backup for when the first is dissolved, since (unless I misremember the rules on Spellbind) you can use the bound spell multiple times per round anyway.

Looking through the rest of your spellbook, it looks like you intend to win through overwhelming direct damage. Therefore, I would drop the Rust and Marked for Death to save space. Given the number of curses you are slinging, you should invest in Moloch's Torment or Adramelech's Torment. By the way, are you running an Arraxian Crown warlock or an Adramelech Warlock? I would strongly suggest Adramelech Warlock for this build, since your mage does not intend to be attacking.

I totally get that not including the dispels and teleports is a risk, but until I run into trouble playtesting, I'm going to at least try going all-in on the you-never-have-line-of-sight strategy. 

As for the wands, ringkichard was right, I had forgotten the "can't have two of the same equipment" rule.  I might swap out the other mage wand for an elemental wand with jet stream, just in case they have an air-heavy deck that exhausts my maim wings supply.  There's not much point in a backup, because if it gets dissolved, they're coming through my wall anyways, and the whole point of the wand is Reassemble.  I might grab a nullify, though, just in case they drop a wall section and quick cast through the hole before I put up a replacement.  As for the equipment removal, I didn't have time to look at the FAQ, but the text of Harshforge Plate says enchantments and incantations targeting the mage cost two extra to cast.  I plan to get around it by transfusing curses off of my creatures (I think of cursed-up bats flying over the wall as curse-bombs, hence the name of the deck). I'd be more annoyed with a suppression cloak (see below), but I can't figure a way to deal with it unless the wall comes down, so I'd just have to stick to curses and fireballing with sersiryx, along with paying the additional cost (if I can afford it) to hit with blood demons, which have enough damage potential to make it worthwhile.

Regarding the strategy, you're right, direct damage is a big deal, but even with magebane, ghoul rot and a few rot conditions, they're only taking 6 damage a round, which means it takes about 6 rounds to kill them with direct damage alone, plus the time it took me to build everything up (probably about another 5-6), even if they have finite life.  From a meta-game perspective, I don't want my games to last 4+ hours, so I want to do some decent attack damage as well, and certain mages tend to have very high armor, and rust is the only way I can deal with it without LOS. I think you may be right about Marked for Death, though, I'll bet I could find something better to do with those deckpoints.

As for the amulets and which warlock I intend to be, as I say, I was in a hurry building and posting this, so I din't have time to check the FAQ for what abilites work and don't work without LOS.  If the adramelech warlock can fireweave a burn condition from something she can see (my cursed bat) to something she can't (enemy mage) then I'll absolutely use her and Adramelech's Torment (and probably switch out MFD for Adramelech's touch).  If that doesn't work, but for some reason moloch's torment doesn't need LOS, I'll use that for sure.  My guess, though, is that none of them work, and so I'm going arraxian crown for curseweaving and to buff a blood demon (hopefully the healing me part of blood reaper won't come into play).

Thanks for your analysis, I think you probably had a lot of good points here.  I get the idea of having flexibility if my plan fails, and I did include rhino hide, vampirism, and sectarus for this purpose, because I think if they get through, I'm switching to straight damage-race mode.  for the time being, though, other than probably removing the MFD's and checking on amulet usability, I'll probably stick to the balls-to-the-wall (get it?) approach, at least for the first game or two.  I definitely intend to make adjustments if it fails, though.  In any case, thanks again for your input.
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Sailor Vulcan

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Re: The Cursebomber Warlock
« Reply #5 on: December 14, 2014, 02:40:25 AM »
Um... Rolling Fog and Cloak of shadows?
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Re: The Cursebomber Warlock
« Reply #6 on: December 14, 2014, 09:44:06 AM »
Mort can also help with keeping walls reassembled while providing a counterattack punch if they break through a wall section.
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Re: The Cursebomber Warlock
« Reply #7 on: December 14, 2014, 10:04:01 AM »
I'm personally not a big fan of the way you use walls and the reason is that it cost so much mana and it doesn't give you any real benefits other than that your spellbook is better suited for these situations but I still don't think it is worth all that mana.
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payprplayn

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Re: The Cursebomber Warlock
« Reply #8 on: December 14, 2014, 01:12:36 PM »
Um... Rolling Fog and Cloak of shadows?

Can you clarify why you think this would be a good addition to this deck?  I shouldn't need obscured if they don't have LOS to me and giving everything obscured only makes it harder to stick curses on them (or fireball them with sersiryx).

Mort can also help with keeping walls reassembled while providing a counterattack punch if they break through a wall section.

Totally.  The only reason I didn't include him was cost, but I think I may try to find a way to fit him in, as well as a goblin builder, so I don't have to prepare a replacement wall section every turn.

I'm personally not a big fan of the way you use walls and the reason is that it cost so much mana and it doesn't give you any real benefits other than that your spellbook is better suited for these situations but I still don't think it is worth all that mana.

You may well be right.   As I said, I haven't playtested this yet (I hope to do so sometime this week), and I'm well aware that my wall may prove impossible to maintain long enough to confer an advantage.  But the wall (and the air superiority) are the core themes of this build.  If either is consistently lost before I have built a significant lead, the build just doesn't work.  In that case, I don't need to modify this book-- I need to scrap it entirely, or at the very least completely overhaul it and rebuild around a new concept.  Should it turn out that way, I do have some thoughts as to how I might salvage some of the ideas from this deck (I think the idea of an air superiority warlock could be good even without the wall, or with the wall played as a suprise twist mid-game).  Until the wall proves untenable, though, I'm really not interested in hearing that the wall won't work, or what I should do if it doesn't.  I'm interested in thoughts on how I can give the wall the best chance of working.  Remember that one of the major goals of this build was to think outside the box.  The box is there for a reason, though, and wild-eyed schemes like this often fail.  I accept that, but I figure you never know 'til you try, and I want to give it a good try.
« Last Edit: December 14, 2014, 01:59:52 PM by payprplayn »
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Re: The Cursebomber Warlock
« Reply #9 on: December 14, 2014, 04:27:07 PM »
The main problems I see here are Eagleclaw boots and playing against builds that have a better economy. 
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payprplayn

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Re: The Cursebomber Warlock
« Reply #10 on: December 14, 2014, 04:35:18 PM »
The main problems I see here are Eagleclaw boots and playing against builds that have a better economy. 
excellent point on the boots.  I always forget about climbing, I pretty much only ever see them used for the unmoveable trait.  In fact, when I first saw your post I was like "Eagleclaw boots? Why? I'm not pushing anyone."  Then I'm like "Oh..Wait.. darn".
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Re: The Cursebomber Warlock
« Reply #11 on: December 14, 2014, 04:53:10 PM »
Eagleclaw Boots are one of the big problems for this strategy, but your opponent should also be able to build enough of a creature lead to smash through walls if necessary. I have trouble seeing this strategy as viable due to the extremely high cost of cutting off the arena like that when you really need to be playing economy or pressuring your opponent, though I would be interested to hear if you manage to pull it off.

I could see a spellbook about using flyers and playing keep away with walls and Cloak of Shadows working, I just don't see throwing a wall across the whole arena working that well due to it's expense. In that case I would probably open with either a pair of Mana Crystals or a Harmonized Pentagram and then throw on some armor, start dropping walls in between me and my opponent's threats, and playing Blood Demons and Darkfenne Bats. If your opponent is on top of you, you can walk one zone, then wall off the space between you. Combine that with some Enfeebles and you can really mess with your opponent's mobility.

Eagleclaw Boots are not such a big problem if you're using walls to prevent individual attacks, as it's a full action to cross the wall this way, but it makes trying to wall off the whole arena kind of pointless.

Let us know how the spellbook works and evolves.
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Re: The Cursebomber Warlock
« Reply #12 on: December 14, 2014, 06:11:27 PM »
The main problems I see here are Eagleclaw boots and playing against builds that have a better economy.

Adding Teleport Trap can assist with Climbing walls using Eagleclaw boots.

I agree the bigger challenge will be those spellbooks that have a large creature base and economy.
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Re: The Cursebomber Warlock
« Reply #13 on: December 16, 2014, 05:13:39 PM »
Adding Teleport Trap can assist with Climbing walls using Eagleclaw boots.

Wow.  I thought of this, but I assumed teleport trap would need LOS from the trapped zone to the dump zone.  Looking at it again, I see that it doesn't.  Definitely an include.

Eagleclaw Boots are one of the big problems for this strategy, but your opponent should also be able to build enough of a creature lead to smash through walls if necessary. I have trouble seeing this strategy as viable due to the extremely high cost of cutting off the arena like that when you really need to be playing economy or pressuring your opponent, though I would be interested to hear if you manage to pull it off.

I could see a spellbook about using flyers and playing keep away with walls and Cloak of Shadows working, I just don't see throwing a wall across the whole arena working that well due to it's expense. In that case I would probably open with either a pair of Mana Crystals or a Harmonized Pentagram and then throw on some armor, start dropping walls in between me and my opponent's threats, and playing Blood Demons and Darkfenne Bats. If your opponent is on top of you, you can walk one zone, then wall off the space between you. Combine that with some Enfeebles and you can really mess with your opponent's mobility.

Eagleclaw Boots are not such a big problem if you're using walls to prevent individual attacks, as it's a full action to cross the wall this way, but it makes trying to wall off the whole arena kind of pointless.

Let us know how the spellbook works and evolves.

I think I am going to switch it to more that sort of strategy.  I still haven't played it yet, and may not for a while, as I've fallen ill and don't currently feel up to a full game of mage wars.  I agree with you that the eagleclaw boots make the "lets completely wall off  half the arena for as long as possible" strategy unworkable, and as I said before, I also think you're probably right about the economy, but if Eagleclaw boots weren't such a common include, I would have tried anyway just to see if I could figure out a way to overcome the economic disadvantage.

As it is, I think I'll transition to the Air-superiority-plus-walls-as-control strategy, meaning I'll probably drop Otto, the acolytes and the reassembles, as well as probably a couple of wall sections, and pick up dissolves, dispels, and a teleport or two.  I can also probably ditch most of the transfusions, since I'll be able (with proper timing) to curse my opponent directly.  I still like the idea of flying sersiryx flinging curses and the occasional fireball.  Along with bats, blood demons, and plenty of maim wings, I should own the skies.  I'm also thinking of throwing in a Vampiress, or possibly the Lord of Fire himself, just to add to my aerial attack.  I'm also considering mangler caltrops for situations when I don't want a wall, but do want to hinder my opponent's ground forces. (vampiress would work well for this, too.)  If I'm feeling better, I hope to post a revised spellbook in the next couple of days.  Thanks for the advice, guys.
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The Cursebomber Warlock
« Reply #14 on: December 16, 2014, 07:27:11 PM »
For some reason whenever I see the title of the thread, I keep accidentally reading it as "the Cumbersome Warlock". It must be some sort of weird optical illusion, I swear!

Also, I just realized you don't have any goblin bombers in your spellbook.
« Last Edit: December 16, 2014, 07:31:15 PM by Sailor Vulcan »
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