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Topics - Myrddin

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Strategy and Tactics / Aggressive use of spawnpoints
« on: July 25, 2014, 06:34:59 AM »
Creature spawnpoints are often thought of as defensive/economical play (battleforges are cheaper and support soloing so are a bit more complex), and obviously they have slightly less immediate aggressive pay-off than a turn 2 Lord of Fire or a Forcemaster solo rush. But I was wondering how often people used spawnpoints aggressively. There are two obvious builds for this, I think

Beastmaster. The Lair is reasonably tough and doesn't depend on anything else (unlike Barracks, Graveyard etc.) to work effectively. This allows you to run fast turn and drop it far centre.

Beastmasters gets cheap Rouse the Beast, so creatures can hit as soon as they arrive. Lots of small, cheap craetures allows you to keep the pressure up, and being in your opponents face reduces their ability to spend actions/mana on mordok's obelisk and similar. For Straywood, this works great with Pet Falcon for a brutal turn 2 attack. For Johktari, she can run and drop a Lair far centre and still have an action free for an enchantment, enchanters ring or leather boots/gloves.

Adramalech Warlock. This is slightly different as the Pentagram itself doesn't have to be far forward, as you can rely on wildfire imps instead. Place and harmonise a pentagram first turn, and then use either a lash-build or a hawkeye-flameblast build to lay down fire on your opponents with the mage: explode and ignite are useful backups!

I'm not convinced about the others: barracks is vulnerable and needs other outposts, temple of asyra needs harmonisation to summon, graveyard needs a flow of deaths to become efficient and the necromancer is squishy, trees are vulnerable to fire... you might be able to do something with gate to voltari, though.

Any thoughts?

Spells / Brace yourself (and Defend)
« on: July 22, 2014, 03:40:37 AM »
I started doing a review of FiF cards suitable for all mages... but then got sidetracked as there's so much to say about this card alone. I think it's clearly a good card, but there's more to say than that

It's an incredibly helpful 'why not' card...

This is the sort of thing you can stick on your mage because you have a couple of extra mana. It might be a nullify or a block, which deters teleportation and attack spells. But instead it's something which can sit there until that one turn: the one you're teleported into a spiked pit surrounded by iron golems or whatever.

but it also enables and works well with specific strategies
- It works against the meta where people feel they must layer on expensive armour from the beginning in case of attacks, leaving more mana for other stuff at the start
- It seriously strengthens creatures with flying, defences or both. Most of all the flying/dodging familiars - you can wait until someone's used knockdown, an unavoidable attack spell, perfect strike on something with reach, or simply got lucky with an archer, and then turn the odds in your favour. Far more efficient than block, which is OK on fliers, but tends to be a bad deal on things with other defences.
- It's just silly efficient with enchantment ring (which I think is pretty fantastic anyway)

It also interacts interestingly with Defend. After revealing Brace Yourself on a guard, you can set them back to guard again.

I also think both Defend and Brace Yourself could be surprisingly aggressive cards. Say my Sir Corazin wants to lead some Knights of Westlock on the attack but is a bit worried about that defending grizzly, who will get a counterstrike and then a full attack. This can lead to long stand-offs with neither willing to make the first move: not what you want if they have a stronger economy. But with Brace Yourself, I can protect my swordsman when he acts as vanguard - and with Defend, I can immediately place him back on the defence, making the grizzly think twice about attacking. Better yet, if I manage to dodge the attacks made against him, I don't even have to reveal it!

Any other possibilities with these cards that people have discovered?

Spellbook Design and Construction / First go at Priestess
« on: July 16, 2014, 08:50:51 AM »
I'm not sure if I've ever made a priestess book before: if I did, it was very early on when I first got the base set and probably involved a crazy-slow Asyran cleric centred economy build. Anyway, I've been playing beastmaster for the last six months or so with the same opponents, and wanted a bit of a change, so built this deck. It's by no means fine-tuned, but I found it interesting to play

[spellbookname]Snapping Turtle[/spellbookname]
[mwcard=mw1a11]1 x  Pillar of Light[/mwcard]
[mwcard=DNA01]1 x  Acid Ball[/mwcard]
[mwcard=FWA02]1 x  Force Hammer[/mwcard]
[mwcard=MWSTX1CKW01]2 x  Wall of Steel[/mwcard]
[mwcard=mw1j08]1 x  Hand of Bim-Shalla[/mwcard]
[mwcard=mw1j09]1 x  Temple of the Dawnbreaker[/mwcard]
[mwcard=mw1c06]1 x  Brogan Bloodstone[/mwcard]
[mwcard=mw1c31]1 x  Samandriel, Angel of Light[/mwcard]
[mwcard=mw1c39]1 x  Valshalla, Lightning Angel[/mwcard]
[mwcard=mw1c22]2 x  Knight of Westlock[/mwcard]
[mwcard=mw1c28]1 x  Royal Archer[/mwcard]
[mwcard=MWSTX1CKC06]1 x  Guardian Angel[/mwcard]
[mwcard=mw1e29]1 x  Nullify[/mwcard]
[mwcard=mw1e10]1 x  Decoy[/mwcard]
[mwcard=MWSTX1CKE03]4 x  Healing Charm[/mwcard]
[mwcard=MWSTX1CKE01]1 x  Armor Ward[/mwcard]
[mwcard=mw1e11]1 x  Divine Intervention[/mwcard]
[mwcard=mw1e37]1 x  Fortified Position[/mwcard]
[mwcard=MWSTX1CKE02]1 x  Divine Might[/mwcard]
[mwcard=mw1e12]2 x  Divine Protection[/mwcard]
[mwcard=mw1e36]2 x  Rhino Hide[/mwcard]
[mwcard=mw1e01]1 x  Bear Strength[/mwcard]
[mwcard=mw1e30]2 x  Pacify[/mwcard]
[mwcard=mw1e05]1 x  Cheetah Speed[/mwcard]
[mwcard=mw1q24]1 x  Ring of Asyra[/mwcard]
[mwcard=mw1q15]1 x  Leather Boots[/mwcard]
[mwcard=FWQ10]1 x  Storm Drake Hide[/mwcard]
[mwcard=mw1q09]1 x  Enchanter's Ring[/mwcard]
[mwcard=DNQ07]2 x  Veteran's Belt[/mwcard]
[mwcard=mw1q06]1 x  Dragonscale Hauberk[/mwcard]
[mwcard=mw1q19]1 x  Mage Wand[/mwcard]
[mwcard=mw1q04]1 x  Deflection Bracers[/mwcard]
[mwcard=mw1q03]1 x  Crown of Protection[/mwcard]
[mwcard=mw1i12]1 x  Force Push[/mwcard]
[mwcard=mw1i14]1 x  Heal[/mwcard]
[mwcard=mw1i13]1 x  Group Heal[/mwcard]
[mwcard=mw1i24]1 x  Seeking Dispel[/mwcard]
[mwcard=mw1i20]1 x  Purify[/mwcard]
[mwcard=mw1i28]1 x  Teleport[/mwcard]
[mwcard=mw1i07]2 x  Dissolve[/mwcard]
[mwcard=mw1i06]3 x  Dispel[/mwcard]
[mwcard=mw1i17]2 x  Minor Heal[/mwcard]
[mwcard=mw1i02]1 x  Battle Fury[/mwcard]
[cost]Total cost: 120 pts[/cost]


My approach is essentially 'build up a buffed army while stacking armour on the mage'. The details depend on whether my opponent is aggressive or defensive. So as a sample against a very aggressive opponent (i.e. a forcemaster who starts with cheetah speed, run, galvitar...) I started the other day with something like:
Turn 1: Don't move. Battle Forge (8) on my centre square, Guardian Angel (12) Mana remaining - 0
Turn 2 (10 mana): BF: Enchantment Ring on self (1). Guardian angel guards. , f/d Rhino Hide on myself (1), f/d fortified position on my home square (2).  Mana remaining - 6
Turn 3 (16 mana) BF: Crown of Protection (0). Prepare divine protection and Knight of Westlock.

This means that
- if he teleports me in with him to double-strike, I can reveal rhino hide and still cast KoW and divine protection (or flee, cast divine protection and boost the angel's armour),
- if he pulls the angel away and charges I can reveal both rhino hide AND fortified position, lay divine protection and boost the angel's armour
- if he pauses to summon, I can summon Knight of Westlock and cast divine protection.

Thoughts on Priestess cards

I didn't realise how good Guardian Angel being flying was
Obviously you lose it when you guard, and I saw it as pretty situational: get over a wall or whatever. But not only does that utility help, but it's useful that you start flying when you lose the guard marker. So if my angel has just been hit in the face and is down to low health, she automatically takes to the air and is difficult to attack! Giving me time to healing charm her and use her innate healing before she gets hit again
Divine enchantments are ace
With enchanters ring and Ring of Asyra, I can put divine protection (aegis) on a creature for 2 mana. That's obscene. Or I can heal them four dice for 3 mana. Either way, I get a life for doing it. Similarly, pacify is far more efficient than essence drain and amounts to the much the same against a lot of creatures.
Knights of Westlock seem to be the benchmark 'normal' level 3
The clear next step from Timber Wolves as the workhorse Level 2, they have a reasonably scary attack, good armour AND a good defence. Healing charm and divine protection are both great for making the most of that armour and preventing a couple of unlucky rolls taking them out. In particular, they're a breath of fresh air after Dire Wolves.
Brogan really irritates defensive mages
He's the reason I have bear strength in my deck: if you're giving someone melee+2, it might as well be someone who won't miss and won't care about armour.
Priestess really annoys my forcemaster opponent
Genuine frustration grew as my roster of guards increased

Stuff I'd like to add

Temple of the Dawnbreaker (everyone has defences, and this will be brutal if I have veterans belt on)
More pacifies and divine protections (if I can steal them from my brother's base set)
Asyran Defender (FiF)
Armory (FiF: at this point, I'd consider ditching the angels and specialising in soldiers)
Temple High Guard (whenever it emerges)

Really grateful for any thoughts!

Custom Cards / Melee attack spells
« on: May 22, 2014, 12:08:15 PM »
I was wondering: is there a deliberate policy of not having melee attack spells? I don't think there are any, even in the promos. It could be quite an interesting approach to having a 'burning hands', 'rock fist' or whatever as a melee attack spell: the fact that it would be a type of attack would automatically stop it stacking with equipment, and the one-off nature fits quite well with some mage types.

You could have an enchantment 'rock fists' that gave access to a new sort of melee attack just like a weapon did. Or it could literally be an attack spell. If it was a quick spell, that might cause balance/rule issues: would you be able to use a melee bonus for it, and then for your real attack, for instance. But I don't see why a full action spell would be controversial: it would essentially be a 'range zero' attack with more interaction around guards etc.

The only problem I see with this would be that the costings would probably have to reflect the significant probability of other melee boosts stacking on the mage. But then, a melee-focused mage would presumably want a weapon, so there'd be inefficiency balancing it.

World and Lore / How does magic work?
« on: March 19, 2013, 03:52:14 PM »
Random thought: is it explicitly intended (for backstory etc. as well as pragmatic gameplay) that Magewars takes place in a world of Vancian magic (i.e. the system best known from D+D, where mages 'memorise' a series of spells each with a distinctive power and then, once cast, are unable to cast them again until properly rested:

Obviously it wouldn't be pure Vancian magic, as you need mana as well.

If so, is the idea that an individual Mage would be able to memorise any selection of spells he wanted for a given fight, and his spellbook represents his capacity to 'contain' certain spells, or does the spellbook represent the spells he's learnt through his studies? Either of these seem to be compatible with 'foreign' spells from strange schools being harder to have in the book. I prefer the latter aesthetically because it makes mages seem more personal/distinctive: although if someone is playing 'in character' as a named Mage but wants to keep swapping spells around, the former makes more sense. Obviously some combination is possible: a Mage could formally 'memorise' (or even just 'revise' the incantantations for) a different selection of spells from his total repertoire before each fight.

General Discussion / What do I need?
« on: March 17, 2013, 01:36:44 PM »
Hi all,

Have just ordered the core set of this, and expect my brother to be at least one of my main opponents. I was wondering: if we're both using the same set, are there enough cards to divide between us and still be able to customize a set (as long as we play different mages)? Either completely freely (ideally), or else at least a reasonable way to divide them without us both drawing from the common set and having to negotiate...

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