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Mystery

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Mystery's thoughts about a lot of things
« on: June 21, 2016, 03:49:48 PM »
First I want to state that I donít want to offend anyone and I am not in a position to state that I know everything and it is the truth and only way I think the game is or should be. And itís a game.

I wanted to do a Magecast with Sharkbait for his channel, but sadly we found no time before I went on my way to the glacier research station I be working the next month. So I will write a bit now here about the tournament. It will also discuss some experiences from the ones before with Thunderdome and Thunderdome G. It also contains some guidelines and tricks.

There had been the Arcane Duels Mage Wars tournament. I just had finished the Thunderdome G tournament and so had rather competitive Decks, but in the end of the tournament I hadnít played much and my skill decreased slowly. I was also theory crafting a lot, which is also a result of the playtesting. It is also hard to keep track of all the decks and which is which iteration and so on.

One first observation of the tournament that I had was that hardly any real academy stuff and strategies and potential combinations did hit the table. Even though many of us long for the new expansions all that old stuff is not yet explored.

The first thing on !!all!! decks was to include a minimum of 2 arcane wards/decoys to use in this tournament. The reason was that academy cards where allowed and protection crucial enchantments with arcane ward, does really hurt and one has to take care of that by having your own to trigger those off and not losing a dispel (this is one spellpoint minimum that you save). But I never had to use it for this purpose never ever, I myself could pull out this protection twice if I remember correctly. In particular I think GW could have won the tight game with it, if used correctly.

Second thing with academy was that the tiny pests with a defense (jade gremlin, dark fenne asp,..) are extremely valuable to knock of guards. I myself wasnít aware really of that cause the pest trait is different in Academy where exactly this is not possible. This is mixed with the fact that I donít and even if it was the only loss (vs biblofilter in a tight match where I played total crap) a valid competitive strategy.

Focusing on that particular game(biblo-mystery): I had the answers but simply forgot, with morning star I could have just killed the asps and that would even result in the fact that the Degu could then have guarded against the Thunderrift falcons. To give a short description of that game: I was playing a Fellela Beastmaster with a Pet-Degu which is all based against direct damage, against Biblos Beastmaster which was based on a Lair and all tiny level one creatures you can get. Fellela died rather fast due to missing her defense all three times. But the assault of creatures took long against the Beastmaster with Vet Belt and the BM together with the Degu took out some creatures, but then only asps/bobcats and falcons remained after some time. Then I realized that I have no anti-flyer. On the transition of arena only to academy I changed my Jokthari curse deck to the male BM. I removed the  Hunting Bow as I also did pre Academy but by having the urge to include an arcane ward, I took the hunting knife instead of the Mage Staff and so there was no anti-flying. So it comes down to donít copy a deck from one mage to the alternate one and still go over all potential weaknesses. Secondly even without the staff I could have killed the defense creatures with the Morningstar and then the Tegu can guard against the flyers. This is mainly now on the spellbook, it was also that you should stay true to your strategy, instead of killing those small creatures and badger frenzy attack with the Tegu (and its akiros favor) against the Beastmaster would have been better. I should have stayed with dealing direct damage trough Rot. But I was and that may sound strange when you lose, he has more ways to deal with enchantments and my DOT, as I feel this is necessary in competitive books, thinking that I have to protect my enchantments first. But in the end it mainly came down to totally crappy play and missing crucial things in a spellbook.

To the other games: I opened with my Jokthari Poison of the Jungle (fellela DOT build) against Devilsvendetta. The game ended rather fast and even though Priestess has probably best changes against those builds (after necro). I think he was just overwhelmed and surprised by the strategy. The same was probably true for some other games with DOT. Which brings me to the point that I have the feeling that neither of us players (no offense) has sufficient games to really state changes on errata suggestions like the short Mage Wand. We all (including me for example, if you look about that tiny defense pest experience mentioned above) need much more mileage and more games. Mage Wars offers so many if not almost infinite combinations and also on a competitive level there are more games than we think. And we should sometimes wait a bit to get those games done and also see more and maybe it can be better solved with new cards instead of Errata some old ones. I still agree now that the Wizard might be the best Mage, but it is not unbeatable if played right. I havenít lost against a Wizard since ages. (even with other mages and also against in my opinion rather skilled players, it is also the surprise part and the knowledge that helps). In that sense extending it back to the last Thunderdome: Charmynas Wizard was almost perfect, that Spellbook when I watched his games before game me much to think about. How to beat it (with a new one to be built as it was a best of three final, and with my, to be honest, totally crappy wizard book). That was my first Tournament ever and to be honest I just had built the book in 10minutes, as my goal was to show the Playtesters and arcane wonders that Ballista shouldnít be printed like the Promo was. And this was clear after the tourney even without my wizard. But anyhow my book was far weaker than Charmynas, but the Bonus was that I almost knew his book, from the previous games. I built it and I think was only guessing a few cards wrong and expecting one more mage wand. In the end by knowing his book I knew that it is worthless to dissolve the Chitin armor as he has minimum 4, that the creature selection is perfect, but that he only has 1 Ballista and maybe 2 towers and 2 elemental wands. So he lacks the killing power if I manage to kill the two earth creatures and dissolve the wands. Anyhow so the Problem are not the Wands really. You should have sufficient spells to take care of them (either 3 dissolves and also a wand or more dissolves(crumble)). But itís the wrong decisions or even a wrong guess that you take as a Player. Hanma had enough dissolves and power in his Deck (and more mage wands), but he went for the chitin and that cost him the game vs Charmyna. And Charmyna dissolved the crucial pieces(single/few copies) with the gloves of skill, got also rid of hawkeye, which are so many missing dice and damage in the end. So donít just dissolve or dispel something now, cause it is a threat now, but will it really be a threat on the long term? And so on. And learn to think about protection, we all probe for nullify when we dissolve or almost always do, cause we are aware, but how many are really aware of enchantment transfusion for protection an enchantment or even arcane ward. And I mean being aware and not just knowing that it exists. Another example of the Charmyna game, I think it was the last regrowth I dispelled it, but he had the transfusion, but couldnít use it cause I positioned myself two zones away and was blured and the guardian angel had already one attached.

The point I want to show is that I didnít have more than one Wand (magewand) in that book, it was rather weak built (sounds strange but thatís it, faced also no other wizard and it had been a small tournament). But Charmyna didnít know that I am weak on defense and didnít focus on me so it ended with a draw. By having a single Stranglevine in the I Probably could have ended it with all those weaks.

All those states that this is not overpowered and then this is usually just normal meta development. Not that I was here from the beginning: But it was kind of with deviations: Thornpush which resulted in quite some Armor then it was said Hanmas book is OP with Jinx and this was a book that can deal well with armor to a certain extent. Charmyna beat it with a perfect Armor tank, which is really strong. Then it was Enchantment Transfusion is OP which is used on heavy DOT to beat heavy Tanks, and many Mage wands and many dispels can beat those and so on.

So if I take that knowledge now to the Tournament I have to talk about the game against GW. He played the Forcemaster with Grizzly and Jelly which Pulls and teleport traps into a spiked pit. I havenít tried or played against that deck at all, but I was aware that it exists (not all details but that teleport trap part). That knowledge in the end won me the game (and his error) even though I made some bad decisions, as I never had played my deck in that set-up before. I only had it with some new war cards from PvS. So I forgot that certain pieces from that set donít exist yet and so on. But a big mistake was to play the Panzerguard instead of the Golem. Know your deck The Golem would have been the perfect answer, unmovable and psychic immune versus the Forcemaster, but I was rather under pressure and that is what you need to use when playing Aggro, force errors. Anyhow by knowing the Idea I casted rune shielded deflection braces so the first attack of the grizzly didnít work. But that was all I had known and then it was a long battle that I still would have lost if GW had played right.

Next point: If you have to decide on two spells for in case he does this or he does this, if it is really important prepare both. If this is the crucial spell you need to get rid of, or creature you need to kill, do it. get rid of crucial crippling spells Example of that game: I had a poison blood on me, and was down to very few life. I was considering that he arcane wards the Poison blood so I canít dispel it, or nullify me as I was Warlord and he was expecting that I donít have many arcane spells and maybe more purifies. So I just prepared both to be prepared for either one. In worst case you lose an action, but if that means your regenerate works or doesnít it might be worth it. Of course this is easier if you are forcemaster, wizard, (sirene), warlord, which have spells on their card or you have equipped wands or a Helm of command for example, as you still have another spell that could work. But before I want to continue on Wands I take GWs decision error. He had just dissolve my chest piece and I only had like 2 or so remaining, and it was his initiative. I could deploy from my Battleforge, he was expecting another chest piece so with vet belt, surging wave would be risky, but maybe I also bring out an defense (he thought that this is less likely) and in case of a defense forcehammer is risky. So he went for the Hammer and a teleport (to teleport grizzly in for an attack). But why if you prepare just both attack spells you have extremely high chances. I did deploy reflex boots and the Hammer was blocked and then I healed and I came out victorious.

Mystery

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Re: Mystery's thoughts about a lot of things
« Reply #1 on: June 21, 2016, 03:51:13 PM »
So I did play Wands in that game, apparently I had 1 elemental wand and 1 mage wand. The Mage wand was like two mage wands with the cantrip rune. But anyhow I almost always still had a Wand and even with epic trait it would have been the same result. That wonít help it anyway. But if GW played right he probably still win, even so I have wands and high defense armor. Just a few days ago I was testing this Forcemaster Deck also and it works and is quite strong (I changed it slightly though) and worked well, but more about it a bit below.

So wands to extend your spellbook, but even more though the give the opportunity that you have one more spell ďpreparedĒ for those ďin caseĒ circumstances. But for me it is important that I bring out a Wand than I use it, if it gets dissolved without use or with only 1 use it is potentially more effective spellbook wise to have included that spell twice. This can be seen perfectly in the game Mystery vs Werekingdom. I did curse him quite some spells and he reacted by deploying a mage wand with dispel, which is perfect. But he didnít use it right away cause of the enchanters wardstone probably. In those cases, either destroy the stone first or if you deploy use the wand. By just casting it and not using it. The opponent has time to take out your wand and without any uses it is a bad trade for you. There can seldomly be situations you want your wand be destroyed, but still try to get one use out of it. Reasons could be to fish for the last dissolve or get the opponents mage wand casted with that last dissolve so you can remove that, or if you want to force them to you, but thatís more seldom. Example of the first case was thunderdome G in the second game vs AFishCalledGert, by having a Magewand with a dispel he was afraid that I remove all his curses. So he was getting out his wand for his last dissolve and removed mine but I had prepared a dissolve myself and so he lost his last dissolve against a Tank Necro with Vet Belts and others. This is also an good example of this over reacting dissolve, wait one round, even if it will mean one more thing being dispelled and nullify yourself so you can dissolve two or stick to your old plan. I feel that it often is better to stick to your plan. I had made a similar error days before on the first match. Adramalech Warlock vs Beastmaster, I was cursing him while being attacked by falcons, but had fireshaper ring and hidden hawkeye. I wanted to get rid of his elemental cloak to cast flame attacks, but then he casted a mage wand so I dissolved that instead, but probably should have stick to the original plan and taken the elemental. But by not having played much and mainly curses I forgot how good the 10dice fireballs are.

So what now if you want to bring out your Magewand to treat with equipment or enchantments. Bring it out off initiative so you can definitely use it a second time the next round on the quickcast, even better if you set it up with a nullify before. Same for elemental wand. It is sometimes better to wait one round and take for example a damage from mage bane more than wasting your precious spells/spellpoints. In this sense here it is important to anticipate when your opponent brings out those wands (kind of like the above Warlock ĖBeastmaster) and let it be dissolved first. [and this does not mean now: Mystery always only takes wands out off initiative ;) ]. This comes down the point of when and what to remove, because only if you understand it you can try to counter it, by anticipating wands, arcane warding the enchantments, using enchantment transfusion tricks and so on.

1)How crucial is the spell at the current point, and how much long term goal will you get out of it?

2)How likely is it that the opponent has a second copy of it? Ė is it still worth it then, cause I will also have to get rid of the second one anyway

3)Are there ways to work around it, apart from dissolve/dispel?

4)If I prepare the spell to remove now, can he do anything against it before and how likely is that?

Giving examples here: You just rushed with something and delt damage, now there is some armor and regrowth. If you delt more damage(like8+) definitely take care, maybe even first cast a poison blood (3) instead of dispelling it and then either when he prepares a dispel next round set up arcane ward trap and/or dispel the regrowth. That is also depending on initiative, but if they are under pressure and they lose one action due to a prepared dispel that doesnít work cause of arcane ward it really hurts. If you delt less dmg (say like 6 after regen) and there is some armor, are there other targets? Like a BF, maybe consider that if they are crucial, else just like above. But regrowth if you played aggressive is definitely something you have to counter immediately. But be aware of extreme defensive tank builds those probably have multiple copies so take your wand and rather work with poison blood first and keep the pressure.

The hardest part is number 2). Which does come down to spellbook building, of course this is based on the local meta always, but you should have multiple copies of your crucial spells. You are Vet-Belt tanking? Have 2-3 Vet Belts, 2-3 regrowth, 2-3chest piecesÖ

You are rushing? Have sufficient clean copies of dispel/dissolve, you have less time for wands, have multiple rustÖ

You are playing a Blasting Adramalech (fireshaper ring, smoldering curses, hawkeye) have 3 fireshaper rings, 2-3hawkeyes, you anyway should have enough curses,

Because in the current meta most people donít run multiples of those crucial ones if those are only granting small buffs, those are often the best targets for dissolve/dispel: Charmyna Hanma: Hawkeye, Gloves of Skill; Mystery-Sharkbait: Fireshapering, Gloves, maybe Hawkeye; Mystery-Powlich: Fireshaper ringÖ

Maybe sometimes even consider dissolving this leather equipment instead of the chest piece, who runs multiple?

But why not run multiples of it? Cause every spellbook counts and they are corroded away easier and replacing doesnít help. Which is the next point about armor. Leather equipment is loved much due to the cheap deployment of an battleforge, but rather start with rhino hide and a chest piece. The good thing is you can react with the rhino hide, and for example if you are attacked by a jelly or acid ball donít reveal it. Also starting with the chest piece gives you the possibility to swap armor. While with leather it is corroded and will probably stay (and you had less armor the whole time).

Armor is of course a strong ability, but it is not unbeatable. People do rely very much on Acid ball so Iíll first raise some awareness that there are ways to remove corrodes. Wand of healing can remove one for one action and 2mana. The same is cure (academy priestess), which will cost you 1 holy spellbook point 4mana for additional healing of 2dice. By chest piece armor swaping you can remove two corrodes if you are fully corroded away (so for example you have rhino hide+dragonscale and 4 corrodes, and you recast the dragonscale so you are at 2 corrodes and 2 remaining armor now). If you are rusted also that would mean removing all corrodes and you are at 2 remaining armor. Those two cases are generally 6mana 1 action for up to 2 corrodes. You can use that two your advantage if you rust yourself and cast a hidden enchantment transfusion when you have 4 armor corroded with 4 corrodes, you can replace your chest piece and after you revealed rust, to let you lose 4 markers. And then you transfuse the rust to the target you wanted to rust anyway. So for 3 actions and 14 mana you can remove up to 4 corrodes and have a rust at your target so its like 9mana (considering that acid balls cost 5mana each and deal on average 3 with two spells, itís a mana gain and did only cost you extra transfusion in spellpoints. Keep in mind those tricks are reduced by 1 corrode for every armor that you have more. So maybe consider taking out the leather later when you played that trick and some acid balls are gone. And the priestess ability can get away all ways of corrodes.

For the guys that want to figure out: Druid with barkskin and a chestpiece you can even get rid of 6 corrodes.

So acid balls are nice attack spells but the higher the total armor apparently the more efficient they get. But if you face some defensive mage and they know how to and want to keep high armor that wonít work. Try to get other ways. Keep in mind rust and critical strike can take care of 5 armor and as I just described corrodes above 4 armor (apart from druid) can only be removed with wand of healing or cure. Critical Strike and Rust will get even more important with chitin armor. But for the above reason acid balls are already now not the only or even best answer, and I dare use only chitin armor, there is always the 10 dice fireball adramalech warlock (with demon hide mask from Academy Warlock it even has Piercing 1). (After writing Rain cloud also came to my mind, but I see it seldomly, and if it is there and you want to get rid and corrode the armor just kill the cloud first.

Now we already touched the topic of Piercing and Critical Strike. Sike had done the Numbers that Dice are (almost) always better than Piercing of the same amount, but that all starts failing once you add veterans Belt. So Critical Strike is a really good card against tanks. It gives this 1 extra over Bear strength and it can also be added to it. The problem is often that if it is only your Beatdown mage we get something that I call active versus passive ability. In this sense Armor is a passive ability but Piercing is an active ability. You only get the Piercing when you use an action to Attack. While you get your armor when you are attacked, so it is passive, it is an action of the other one. This results in the Problem that if you are an agro beat down mage the defensive mage has two free actions while you only have one, if you want to keep the damage up. For example you are a Melee Forcemaster vs a Necro. He can cast rhino hide and a chest piece you bear strength and swing 6+4. Next round he dispels the bear strength and casts and agony, you can only take care of 1 thing as you want to keep attacking. That might not hurt as long as no regrowth (another passive ability is around) or some new thing from a spawnpoint is slowly approaching.

Mystery

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Re: Mystery's thoughts about a lot of things
« Reply #2 on: June 21, 2016, 03:52:12 PM »
But after the Match versus GW I know that Aggro can work. The point is you need creature or minimum spawnpoint support to not fall in this active/passive trap. Sersiryx, Fellela can cast the buffs or debuffs for you, or the attacking creature isnít you but a grizzly and you have both actions free to help that. I just lately played as mentioned above a similar book (http://forum.arcanewonders.com/index.php?topic=16887.0). And it worked out very well, and the players were definitely good ones (Thanks to my friends here in Sweden, Drefan, Frozen, Powlich). Even two were wizard, and also Druid is considered an extremely strong mage. The druid match was much closer. But it came also down to book knowledge; this can put so much early pressure on anyone. And the Wizards if I remember correctly both had 3 Mage Wands and 2 Elementals Wand, so there were wands and still the Forcemaster won the game. There were even multiples, and those are also very good players. Of course this agro forcemaster with Grizzly and Jelly has severe problems with Spellbooks points, as those two creatures already take up 20% of it, but with your aggression you force them into your play and defense can be neglected a bit. Of course once the book is known itís not that easy, but thatís the same with charmynas book. I knew it and so I could get that draw with a totally shitty book. Wands are good, but not overpowered only if you start dissolving too early and you are not aware of how many are left it can get a huge problem. ďIn a forcemaster book steal equipment comes in handy hereĒ.

Coming back to Critical Strike and also every Spellpoint counts: Spellbook points are an extremely tight currency and with every expansion it will be moreÖ (looking at you terrain). The even for the Wizard they are tight, maybe less but they are. Dispel/Dissolve/Purge magic are limited, but so are also the enchantments. The good thing though is that every enchantment you have makes it more likely that another enchantment is going to stay in game. There are hard decisions to take what to dispel. Use that to your advantage, if you have tight spellbook points and you are playing a melee warlock. You probably canít afford 4copies of bear strength, Wolf Fury and Critical strike, but you can afford more curses. Every curse somehow hurts, so either they keep it and get damage, or when they dispel your 1-2copies of the melee buffs are more likely to survive and you maybe still have that curse. That counts for every mage, maybe start with those enchantments you have more to bait some dispels.
As a Warlord get that critical strike more often than bear strength and get it out first. Sometimes even play the worse counter card first to plant an idea in the other players had that he has to get rid of it. For example in Thunderdome G final Necro vs Warlock I had 2 elemental cloaks and 2 dragonscales. I did cast the cloak first even though dragonscale is of course better. But I wanted to give him the idea, that he has to get rid of it using an early dissolve and maybe also making him believe I even have no dragonscale. Those are tiny psychic tricks, but they matter sometimes.
Your more crucial Enchantments you can still protect with an arcane ward, for all out of schools or lvl2 and higher ones the arcane ward is cheaper spellbook points wise and up to know, not many players are even aware of the card, so it will take them two dispels(seeking maybe) to get it off.

Enchantment Transfusion as enchantment Protection: This is something I do really like and I see it as strong play, but also as hard as it requires a lot of anticipation. I consider those curse ET books very high skill books, you have so many hidden enchantments to keep track off and count reveal costs and know when to play what. But first the idea is once a dispel/purify/purge magic is cast you can reveal the enchantment transfusion to move those enchantments to a new target that hopefully has also an ET to move them back, or it is done soon after. The problem is that it requires carefull mana planning. But it is seldom more expensive mana wise or maximum 1 to move there and back than applying a new enchantment. Spellbook wise it depends, but it really shines as you can protect any enchantment so instead of having for example 3 copies of 4 different enchantments you have 2 each and 2-3ET to move them. Also from a psychological point it is really devastating of your dispel didnít work. Donít use Enchantment Transfusion with new Players With Purge magic it is extremely nice.
A good thing of ET protection instead of even more copies of the enchantment is also that you can bank that action in the ET and if a purge magic comes and you ďcounter itĒ you have no action problem, else it probably takes a few actions to get all enchantments back on, that you may not have now.

A few rule things to consider: If you have mage bane cast dispel but your target is moved you gain no damage.
If there is an Enchanters Wardstone you get that mana back (apparently strictly speeking you anyway first just cast the dispel with the hidden+revealcost of the enchantment and then you would have to pay for the stone).
If you cast Purify it costs 0 to start with so if the enchantments are moved you pay nothing. But you gain dmg from mage bane
If you Purge magic even if all enchantments are move it still resolves, Iím not sure about the mage bane though, but it should be when move you gain no dmg, if not moved you gain a dmg but it is gone.
If only a few enchantments are moved you only have to pay the extra wardstone mana for the remaining.

Priestess Academy will bring really a perfect card against the decks with heavy Curse-DOT with Remove Curse.

Based on ET: Donít underestimate Seeking Dispel for Stranglevine/astral anchor, better seeking dispel the hidden enchantment before you purge magic instead of fishing for nullify and so on

There had been quite some discussions on Enchanters wardstone. I personally donít favor running more than one, and even that Iím not always sure about. Its just starting to pay off if more than 3 dispels are used as I consider it before that I had used that investment in the stone instead of for example a mana crystal. The opponent playing a crystal is almost the counter to the wardstone. He wonít dispel every round. I favor running your enchantments instead multiple times, if it is a crucial one in a game, it will get dispelled in any case even if you have a wardstone. Also if you use protection spells

So coming back to the last games of the ADMW: As a player of my reputation you have to face wizards often, I was surprised neither Werekingdom nor GW played on in Final Stage. But anyhow their I took the decks I believe that have the best chances, counter Tank with Ballista and Heavy Curse Warlock with Bloodreaper and some armor. First game as said was Jokthari Poison of the Jungle vs Priestess. Second was a Veteran Bridge Troll based Warlord against a Wizard. This game, cause it is a Orc Warlord you can potentially lose if the Wizard is played better (the game is on arcane duels stream). Then was the BM game vs Biblofilter. The last game of the Group stage was the cursing 10 fireball throwing Warlock against a Wizard that also had quite some curses. The focus on Sersiryx and my Battelforge gave me the time to End it rather quick.
The First match of the final stage was a Tank Dwarf against the Telepit Forcemaster (Schwenkgotts youtube channel), quite potent deck. And I should have lost it. The last two games I was both times facing an Adramalech Warlock. Both of my Decks of the classic Warlock and the Druid were based on Direct damage, just onetime including Vines. While I felt Werekingdom was totally overwhelmed, Powlich played good, but anyhow both were not prepared for this kind of Deck. But itís funny if Warlocks die due to curses.

One thing to add to that Forcemaster Telepit I would say after I played it now and maybe even think about it. Donít show your parts first if you donít need to. GW opened with a Grizzly and the spiked Pit. So I knew whats going to come (even though I thought itís an astral anchor). So I opened force ring, grizzly instead. But now I consider even opening with just double move. And cast the grizzly on the second turn instead. It takes one more round until your opponent has an idea. Double move forcemaster can still mean a lot. And in case you could if you want also use the jelly instead of the BM as first creature.

The last thing I have to say to the Deck of Werekingdom. All of us should look at our Decks, Spellbook points are extremely tight. Look which situational cards you have, and if you really need that Shift enchantment, piercing strike, and so on. Is it for example better to find that one spellbook point elsewhere and have an enchantment transfusion instead of the Shift enchantment for more flexibility instead of a very niche card. Look at your creatures, how many will you really play. Is it really necessary to have situational one for ďin caseĒ situation or is it not really a weakness of the deck. Those few points can probably be much better invested in 1-2 more copies of dispel or dissolve. For example if you have rush BM with a Grizzly you may need a second one. The third one is questionable but the 4th defenitly not, you are rushing rather commit more a have additional rust/acidball/dispel/dissolve. Or in Werekingdoms case you will never manage to cast fire elemental and Adramalech choose either, even more so if you have many more creatures.

(You cannot have a counter to everything and with counter I mean strong counter. But you want at least to have something that will delay almost everything enough for your deck to work. A single dragonscale is no counter to a warlock as he can counter that too, but packed with a nullify it might give you the time for your for example creatures to kick in. )

Closing remark: Donít overthink the game. Cause if you want to see what happens then watch Mystery vs Gert match with BM vs Warlock on Schwenkgotts channel. I wait with the ring of fire until every Falcon has hit me, and I got quite a lot of damage. The reason? If I start with it and Iím unlucky, which I assumed they survive and can fly to the renewing spring.

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Re: Mystery's thoughts about a lot of things
« Reply #3 on: June 21, 2016, 06:54:56 PM »
I think I might have accidentally flagged your post as inappropriate. I swear it was an accident! Using Tapatalk and I accidentally pressed it while trying to scroll down...


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Mystery's thoughts about a lot of things
« Reply #4 on: June 21, 2016, 07:51:55 PM »
So what I want to know is this: If the wizard does have an advantage over the other mages, how much more skilled must you be than your opponent in order to overcome that advantage, either in competitive or casual play? And if the wizard doesn't have an advantage, what kinds of mistakes are non-wizard players making when they face a wizard, and why aren't these mistakes posing similar problems for them in other match-ups, and why are even competitive players failing to notice these mistakes they are making?

Also, what to do about the very low diversity of wizard strategies?


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Re: Mystery's thoughts about a lot of things
« Reply #5 on: June 21, 2016, 08:12:50 PM »
Thanks so much for sharing Mystery.

These are great ideas and tips from an experienced player that we can all use to improve our game play.
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Re: Mystery's thoughts about a lot of things
« Reply #6 on: June 22, 2016, 04:23:39 AM »
Thanks so much for sharing Mystery.

These are great ideas and tips from an experienced player that we can all use to improve our game play.

Basically this :)

I really like how you stress the importance of timing, especially when using Mage Wands. I have a friend who likes to cast them and maybe just get one use out of them instead of multiple. In those cases, I come out on top because I pay 5 mana and 1 action to deny his wand which is 5mana + card.
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Re: Mystery's thoughts about a lot of things
« Reply #7 on: June 22, 2016, 07:33:00 AM »
Thanks so much for sharing Mystery.

These are great ideas and tips from an experienced player that we can all use to improve our game play.

Basically this :)


+1 :)
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Re: Mystery's thoughts about a lot of things
« Reply #8 on: June 22, 2016, 07:42:21 AM »
It seems like you have a lot of spare time up there in the mountains. :)

It's easy to underestimate the importance of the spellbook points. Thanks to you, I will think more about this in the future. Both when it comes to deck construction, and tactics during a game, it's really crucial.

When I played against Mysterys aggro grizzly deck with my druid, I think I had his grizzly down to about 5 life left, and I had quite good board control with walls and thornlashers. He cast regrowth on the grizzly, and then I change focus from the grizzly to his mage. That was a huge mistake when I think about how much of his spellbook were commited to that grizzly. (About 15 sbp. I don't count the spiked pit and the teleport trap, since they've already done their job) When a forcemaster plays a level 4 buddy, it's a big loss for her if you can kill it with relatively small effort. Now he also played a devouring jelly, so if I manage to kill both, I should have a good spellbook advantage for the rest of the game.
But as usual, I overthink the game. (If I dispel the regrowth he will cast another one, or a 8 dice heal, or a...)
After that he destoyed my tree with his creatures, and then I couldn't heal enough to keep up.

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Re: Mystery's thoughts about a lot of things
« Reply #9 on: June 22, 2016, 09:10:15 AM »
I wanted to do a Magecast with Sharkbait for his channel, but sadly we found no time before I went on my way to the glacier research station I be working the next month.
I had to reread Mysterys posts twice. When i was reading it for a first time, i had an image of 2 meters tall Mystery with a Beard and Harpoon fighting with Glacier Pirates while covering escape of colony of endangered pinguins...

As i never participated in Thunderdomes or similar OCTGN tournaments, thx to Arcane Duels guys i had a chance to see most of the matches. Here i agree with Mystery with most of the stuff and probably do translated version of this text for players in my country. Its a lot of text so i would probably need my own Glaciar research station :)

Thing i should mention is that most of the MW population are average players. They didnt posses that ammount of battles under their belt, mental state or that much experience. What i see right now is Mystery as Falcon giving reasons to Kiwi birds not to be afraid of hights (Wizards). Wizard is not unbeatable. But you have to be a more experienced player then usual. Does Wizard have very great set of tools to destroy you? Yes. Does he needs to be fixed? For Falcons? Why bother. For Kiwis, yes it should. At the end, there are more average players then Falcons so their voice will be heard much more often :)

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« Last Edit: June 22, 2016, 09:12:17 AM by Boocheck »
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Re: Mystery's thoughts about a lot of things
« Reply #10 on: June 22, 2016, 09:40:15 AM »
It seems like you have a lot of spare time up there in the mountains. :)

It's easy to underestimate the importance of the spellbook points. Thanks to you, I will think more about this in the future. Both when it comes to deck construction, and tactics during a game, it's really crucial.

When I played against Mysterys aggro grizzly deck with my druid, I think I had his grizzly down to about 5 life left, and I had quite good board control with walls and thornlashers. He cast regrowth on the grizzly, and then I change focus from the grizzly to his mage. That was a huge mistake when I think about how much of his spellbook were commited to that grizzly. (About 15 sbp. I don't count the spiked pit and the teleport trap, since they've already done their job) When a forcemaster plays a level 4 buddy, it's a big loss for her if you can kill it with relatively small effort. Now he also played a devouring jelly, so if I manage to kill both, I should have a good spellbook advantage for the rest of the game.
But as usual, I overthink the game. (If I dispel the regrowth he will cast another one, or a 8 dice heal, or a...)
After that he destoyed my tree with his creatures, and then I couldn't heal enough to keep up.

thats kind of what i mean with deck knowledge and what you need to know. The grizzly and jelly and initial two traps cost 25% of the spellbook you cant have so many multiple copies of everything. Thats the same with like Hanma not knowing that charmyna really runs 4 chitin. But I made the same mistake against GW under pressure I didnt think about going for the mage as he can defend her, but there is no space for that in the spellbook.

If you killed the bear you get out quite nice i think. Did you have a high lvl attack spell? And you did kind of open with the right cards with rhino hide and barkskin about the deck already knowing that it is very aggro from the other two. Still it turned out well. (stacking myself in a tanglevine and astral anchor in zone was my way to protect me from wall pushes)

I wanted to do a Magecast with Sharkbait for his channel, but sadly we found no time before I went on my way to the glacier research station I be working the next month.
I had to reread Mysterys posts twice. When i was reading it for a first time, i had an image of 2 meters tall Mystery with a Beard and Harpoon fighting with Glacier Pirates while covering escape of colony of endangered pinguins...

I wrote almost all of that when we waited the first day before I hiked to the station for the third person to come. But as it is raining(snowing the whole time now, i was in a bit. And midnight sun helps up extending your day ;)

So what I want to know is this: If the wizard does have an advantage over the other mages, how much more skilled must you be than your opponent in order to overcome that advantage, either in competitive or casual play? And if the wizard doesn't have an advantage, what kinds of mistakes are non-wizard players making when they face a wizard, and why aren't these mistakes posing similar problems for them in other match-ups, and why are even competitive players failing to notice these mistakes they are making?

Also, what to do about the very low diversity of wizard strategies?
Thats hard to tell, it is even hard to tell what skill is in a way. Also are you skilled with all mages? Not every mage will have the exactly same chances against every other even without wizard. I am not in the way to say even that. It also depends how complex your deck is and how complex the one you want to counter is. For example as said high curse DOT builds with lots of hidden enchantments and transfusions are rather high skill builds, that need a lot of anticipation and mana calculations and though decissions....

As I wrote its not that much mistakes, but it is also finding out what is the weakness of those for example famous armor wizard books, so first way that largly improved my understanding was that i did built charmynas book from what I saw of the videos and find a way. Built a book yourself and when you built it you maybe will also find its weakness and try to cover it and maybe will create a new one. Those are maybe good start to find something right against a Wizard. I am still stating that the wizard is currently on average the best mage, but it is far less developed as many think. And as I am also a playtester i have seen many more future cards and also have played with the Priestess Warlocks cards and for example the Male Warlock I am considering as "Extremly potent now". Its hard to rush on parts.

I was even considering posting this high armor tank wizard and then writing the thoughts about which spells I'd like to add and can't add. But I dont have it with me and I am not sure if I should really post it.

What adds to this is that there are quite some Decks posted in the Forums, I posted almost all from Thunderdome G (Necro missing, and that Wizard) but there was no feedback, not sure if many people even looked at them.

I see and have many different Wizards, Charmynas and Hanmas were totally different. Mine of that tourney was something in between (which is probably bad as stated: focus on something). They are different from Gen Con. I also meet Gremlin/gate stuff. Curse support one,... Tell me is there really so much diversity on other mages? Male Warlock? Necro?
It also comes down how strong and easy games are: Is classic Libro/zombie brute good? yes it is, but mainly at a basic level but it is far of from the best Necro books in my PoV, but it is easy to play and so on.

Mage Wars Roar league for example improved my book building skills as you could limit the oponents mage to 4/3/2/1 so basing it a bit on that. For example I knew to face a Druid in my last game with a Beastmaster. Thats a hard match-up. The druid is simply on average the better nature mage in a direct duel. But rushing was to risky with thorn push, but I came to the conclusion I can out channel him with harmonize lair in corner and some flowers. Falcons can distract him and I get out very strong in school bear strength strong grizzlies... Not that those games are requiring perfect books for normal play, but it helps to deal with deck development and the every spell book counts part (a ring of fire in this case was also added).
Something to add to spellbook points, every one is really important but dont be afraid to go out of school and even tripple cost if it is something you !!really!! need in the book

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Re: Mystery's thoughts about a lot of things
« Reply #11 on: June 22, 2016, 10:43:58 AM »
Great posts, Mystery
so much in there I can't respond to right away because of time restrictions.

I'd like to react to your game vs GW and the Forcemaster though.

I started to watch that game because I was curious to see somebody else play that forcemaster book and I knew gw liked it.
As I saw gw do the usual opening and you ( Warlord ) open with Battleforge and two mana crystals iirc I couldn't help but think this would be "in the bag".

After your Warlord ended up in the Trap I expected gw to play his walls to seal off the Battleforge.
The walls never came though and that was the biggest mistake in the game imo. That's also what made this such a long game in the end.

I was surprised to see this game took so long after all and you were ultimately able to hang on to 1 life, still come back and take the win. Congratulations on that.

I also found it very fair of you to say that you shouldn't have won this game after all. I couldn't believe it either.
Not after seeing you with 1 life left and the FM still in OK shape.

Then a few days ago I noticed that gw posted his FM build and I was perplexed to see how much the book was changed.
Spells which I find an integral part of the Strategy were simply gone.
All Conjurations gone, all attack spells changed ...

Stranglevine and tanglevine and especially the walls (can) play such important roles that this strategy is just weaker without them.
I know Pillar of Light is generally looked at as a "weak" spell but having a rather reliable way to Daze and occasionally even stun the opposing mage makes this book even better.
A Dazed mage will think twice before attacking and playing attack spells which keeps the FM and his buddies healthier as well and a Stunned mage for a round can right out mean GG especially when he was just planning to cast a creature and/or attack spell.

Overall though, I found it great to see gw in action with this FM strategy, thereby giving a hint at how good and threatening the FM can be.

Now, insert those walls gw :) ( just kidding )

btw for further reference, if you're interested, you can find my updated FM book over here
http://forum.arcanewonders.com/index.php?topic=16120.0

There are a lot of other interesting points you made, Mystery, unfortunately I don't have the time to respond to all of them but I'm definitely in agreement that there is so much still to discover in this game even with the base game spells and we certainly all could use some more mileage.
Book knowledge goes a long way in winning games.

Success with the job and have a nice time over there in the mountains.
« Last Edit: June 22, 2016, 11:03:46 AM by Borg »
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Re: Mystery's thoughts about a lot of things
« Reply #12 on: June 22, 2016, 10:46:45 AM »
It seems like you have a lot of spare time up there in the mountains. :)

It's easy to underestimate the importance of the spellbook points. Thanks to you, I will think more about this in the future. Both when it comes to deck construction, and tactics during a game, it's really crucial.

When I played against Mysterys aggro grizzly deck with my druid, I think I had his grizzly down to about 5 life left, and I had quite good board control with walls and thornlashers. He cast regrowth on the grizzly, and then I change focus from the grizzly to his mage. That was a huge mistake when I think about how much of his spellbook were commited to that grizzly. (About 15 sbp. I don't count the spiked pit and the teleport trap, since they've already done their job) When a forcemaster plays a level 4 buddy, it's a big loss for her if you can kill it with relatively small effort. Now he also played a devouring jelly, so if I manage to kill both, I should have a good spellbook advantage for the rest of the game.
But as usual, I overthink the game. (If I dispel the regrowth he will cast another one, or a 8 dice heal, or a...)
After that he destoyed my tree with his creatures, and then I couldn't heal enough to keep up.

thats kind of what i mean with deck knowledge and what you need to know. The grizzly and jelly and initial two traps cost 25% of the spellbook you cant have so many multiple copies of everything. Thats the same with like Hanma not knowing that charmyna really runs 4 chitin. But I made the same mistake against GW under pressure I didnt think about going for the mage as he can defend her, but there is no space for that in the spellbook.

If you killed the bear you get out quite nice i think. Did you have a high lvl attack spell? And you did kind of open with the right cards with rhino hide and barkskin about the deck already knowing that it is very aggro from the other two. Still it turned out well. (stacking myself in a tanglevine and astral anchor in zone was my way to protect me from wall pushes)

I wanted to do a Magecast with Sharkbait for his channel, but sadly we found no time before I went on my way to the glacier research station I be working the next month.
I had to reread Mysterys posts twice. When i was reading it for a first time, i had an image of 2 meters tall Mystery with a Beard and Harpoon fighting with Glacier Pirates while covering escape of colony of endangered pinguins...

I wrote almost all of that when we waited the first day before I hiked to the station for the third person to come. But as it is raining(snowing the whole time now, i was in a bit. And midnight sun helps up extending your day ;)

So what I want to know is this: If the wizard does have an advantage over the other mages, how much more skilled must you be than your opponent in order to overcome that advantage, either in competitive or casual play? And if the wizard doesn't have an advantage, what kinds of mistakes are non-wizard players making when they face a wizard, and why aren't these mistakes posing similar problems for them in other match-ups, and why are even competitive players failing to notice these mistakes they are making?

Also, what to do about the very low diversity of wizard strategies?
Thats hard to tell, it is even hard to tell what skill is in a way. Also are you skilled with all mages? Not every mage will have the exactly same chances against every other even without wizard. I am not in the way to say even that. It also depends how complex your deck is and how complex the one you want to counter is. For example as said high curse DOT builds with lots of hidden enchantments and transfusions are rather high skill builds, that need a lot of anticipation and mana calculations and though decissions....

As I wrote its not that much mistakes, but it is also finding out what is the weakness of those for example famous armor wizard books, so first way that largly improved my understanding was that i did built charmynas book from what I saw of the videos and find a way. Built a book yourself and when you built it you maybe will also find its weakness and try to cover it and maybe will create a new one. Those are maybe good start to find something right against a Wizard. I am still stating that the wizard is currently on average the best mage, but it is far less developed as many think. And as I am also a playtester i have seen many more future cards and also have played with the Priestess Warlocks cards and for example the Male Warlock I am considering as "Extremly potent now". Its hard to rush on parts.

I was even considering posting this high armor tank wizard and then writing the thoughts about which spells I'd like to add and can't add. But I dont have it with me and I am not sure if I should really post it.

What adds to this is that there are quite some Decks posted in the Forums, I posted almost all from Thunderdome G (Necro missing, and that Wizard) but there was no feedback, not sure if many people even looked at them.

I see and have many different Wizards, Charmynas and Hanmas were totally different. Mine of that tourney was something in between (which is probably bad as stated: focus on something). They are different from Gen Con. I also meet Gremlin/gate stuff. Curse support one,... Tell me is there really so much diversity on other mages? Male Warlock? Necro?
It also comes down how strong and easy games are: Is classic Libro/zombie brute good? yes it is, but mainly at a basic level but it is far of from the best Necro books in my PoV, but it is easy to play and so on.

Mage Wars Roar league for example improved my book building skills as you could limit the oponents mage to 4/3/2/1 so basing it a bit on that. For example I knew to face a Druid in my last game with a Beastmaster. Thats a hard match-up. The druid is simply on average the better nature mage in a direct duel. But rushing was to risky with thorn push, but I came to the conclusion I can out channel him with harmonize lair in corner and some flowers. Falcons can distract him and I get out very strong in school bear strength strong grizzlies... Not that those games are requiring perfect books for normal play, but it helps to deal with deck development and the every spell book counts part (a ring of fire in this case was also added).
Something to add to spellbook points, every one is really important but dont be afraid to go out of school and even tripple cost if it is something you !!really!! need in the book
Really? Because most of the wizard spellbooks I've ever seen were variations of either blasting banker, watergate, wiz tower attack spell rush or telepit.


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Re: Mystery's thoughts about a lot of things
« Reply #13 on: June 22, 2016, 10:51:46 AM »
A good counter to a tanky Veteran Belt/High Armour Wizard is DoT, especially using Enchantment Transfusion (since the Wizard probably can't Dispel/Disperse them fast enough... unless he uses Purge Magic).  But that anti-tank strategy is going to get a lot worse when Academy Priestess brings Remove Curse and Cure.  A tanky Wizard can add these to his book and become nearly immune to curse/rot/bleed-based DoT strategies too, with little compromise to his other strategies.  Then he'll be really strong against (1) level 1 creature swarms, (2) solo, (3) buddy, and (4) DoT.  So... what is his weakness again?  You suggest Rust is an answer, but Rust is also a curse, so not only can it be Dispel'ed (even with a Dispel Wand) easily but it can be Remove Curse'd too.
« Last Edit: June 22, 2016, 10:55:44 AM by iNano78 »
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Re: Mystery's thoughts about a lot of things
« Reply #14 on: June 22, 2016, 10:54:35 AM »
It seems like you have a lot of spare time up there in the mountains. :)

It's easy to underestimate the importance of the spellbook points. Thanks to you, I will think more about this in the future. Both when it comes to deck construction, and tactics during a game, it's really crucial.

When I played against Mysterys aggro grizzly deck with my druid, I think I had his grizzly down to about 5 life left, and I had quite good board control with walls and thornlashers. He cast regrowth on the grizzly, and then I change focus from the grizzly to his mage. That was a huge mistake when I think about how much of his spellbook were commited to that grizzly. (About 15 sbp. I don't count the spiked pit and the teleport trap, since they've already done their job) When a forcemaster plays a level 4 buddy, it's a big loss for her if you can kill it with relatively small effort. Now he also played a devouring jelly, so if I manage to kill both, I should have a good spellbook advantage for the rest of the game.
But as usual, I overthink the game. (If I dispel the regrowth he will cast another one, or a 8 dice heal, or a...)
After that he destoyed my tree with his creatures, and then I couldn't heal enough to keep up.

thats kind of what i mean with deck knowledge and what you need to know. The grizzly and jelly and initial two traps cost 25% of the spellbook you cant have so many multiple copies of everything. Thats the same with like Hanma not knowing that charmyna really runs 4 chitin. But I made the same mistake against GW under pressure I didnt think about going for the mage as he can defend her, but there is no space for that in the spellbook.

If you killed the bear you get out quite nice i think. Did you have a high lvl attack spell? And you did kind of open with the right cards with rhino hide and barkskin about the deck already knowing that it is very aggro from the other two. Still it turned out well. (stacking myself in a tanglevine and astral anchor in zone was my way to protect me from wall pushes)

I didn't have any high dmg spells, so I think I should have destroyed the regrowth, and continue pushing him back and forth. I remember he had a bleed token on him also, so I should have cast a nullify/arcane ward, since it was quite obvious you would try to heal him somehow.