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Topics - abyssalstalker

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Rules Discussion / Nullify VS. X Mana Cost spells and Encantments
« on: December 19, 2013, 12:02:42 pm »
Hey guys,

If an enemy casts nullify on me and then I cast teleport on myself would I have to specify where I was planning to teleport to before they reveal nullify? I'm asking in regards to what I would have to pay (waste) on my teleport spell even though it was nullified.

The same question pops up for enchantments. If an enemy casts nullify on themselves and I cast some type of curse enchantment and decide to immediately reveal do I have to pay the full cost or just 2?

On a similar note, let's say I have a face-down enchantment on me and then the enemy casts nullify on me at some other point during the game. If I reveal my face-down enchantment would nullify take effect?

Thanks in advance!

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Strategy and Tactics / Let's talk about the Druid!
« on: December 04, 2013, 03:09:07 pm »
Hey guys,

I've been reading around the forums and it seems like everyone is talking about the Necromancer. This is fine and all but I'd love to see some minds come together on developing Druid strategy and tactics!

I've found out the hard way that in a Druid vs. Necro matchup the Druid just doesn't have time to build up too much. The Necromancer comes out with way too many creatures whether he uses one spawnpoint or two. I had lost my first three games vs the necro since his focus was creature offense and mine was late game. This poor strategy has been discussed to death on the forums but I had heard the Druid was all about growth and spreading so I initially thought she may have more of an edge in that regard. Regardless, I found that if I use my vines aggressively and only focus on a basic economy the Druid works well against a Necromancer.

I'd love to have some discussion on Druid-style spells so I'll throw in my thoughts for each:

Vine Tree My personal favorite tree. Unlike the Samara Tree you can utilize spells that are deployed right away rather than having to wait. I cast this first turn in my starting zone and treebond with it. I generally protect this tree at all costs.

Samara Tree At first I was amazed at the amount of actions that could be saved but then I analyzed and playtested this card and realized its rather weak. Casting only seedling pods means that the investment in this tree is astronomical. It takes three rounds for a seedling pod to be able to deploy, and potentially 2+ to break even with its casting cost. This, coupled along with their vulnerability since your enemy can attack one and waste its mana. The only saving grace this tree has is making seedling pods gain cantrip. However, being zone exclusive and its cost make that rather prohibitive.

Mohktari Tree - I'm personally not a huge fan. Doesn't affect her conjurations. Even if it did almost all her plants have regen 1 or regen 2 already. It's benefit also works for the enemy if they having living creatures in its zone. It not being zone-exclusive is its only saving grace in my opinion and is situational.

Etherian Lifetree When I first read this I thought it would be extremely powerful for swarm builds and her plans in general. Then I read the recent FAQ and realized the +2 life is for everything on the board, including enemies. Also, because its innate life even the undead gain the benefit! This tree quickly became situational in which its main benefit would be if you had far more creatures than your opponent and gained more of an advantage. That being said, if I was on the losing end of creatures vs this tree Id just focus all I could on the mage rather than get tangled up.

Nightshade Lotus Ive only played against the necromancer at this point so I havent been able to really test this in the field but the spell itself seems decent. It seems that you save 1 mana at all levels over a regular sleep enchantment. Plus, its a vine so you could deploy this with the vine tree (or even quick cast it) when you have initiative to almost guarantee a sleep without a proper reaction. Seems good against an opponent that has one or two big creatures. Would be almost useless against a swarm.

Seedling Pod I see the potential in casting seedling pods all over the board and making your opponent worried but at the same time its a pretty steep investment if you only cast it from your mage. They are extremely vulnerable and take a long time to pay off. This section goes hand-in-hand with my gripes of the Samara Tree. I just dont see these being viable.

Stranglevine Its an aggressive tanglevine. Since it initially only has 6 health (2 less than tanglevine) it can be one-shotted if you cast it too early in a round. In order to properly utilize this spell I feel it should be used in the final quick cast phase so it gains at least one round of its upkeep benefits. This is a double edged sword since you cant play it cheaply through a seedling pod or vine tree. Overall, I think it can be a good card against someone that uses one or two big creatures. I could also see this being very good against an unprepared forcemaster.

Tanglevine It has 8 health which I find more reasonable than its big brother Stranglevine. This card can be used to keep a nasty monster from coming at you or to lock one down so it cant escape (at least on foot). Ive been in absolute woe since teleport completely destroys this. I cant count the number of times I wanted to deploy a tanglevine on an enemy and then teleport them into my vine snappers. Sure, I can use a quick cast teleport then full cast a tanglevine but what if he has a teleport prepared? Id rather have two ready if I was going for this kind of play.

Mohktari Branch Its a nice way to remove burn or taint from your plant objects. I wish she could use it to heal without removing conditions but that was overruled. Id definitely keep it in her book.

Druids Leaf Ring I find my vine tree casts more plants than I do due to mana constraints. That being said, I usually try to find some way to use this every round I have it on. I have been currently quick casting it on the first turn and then casting my lifebond tree for one less mana.

Vinewhip Staff It seems kind of expensive for what it does. The Vine tree allows you to deploy two vines a turn and I cant imagine many scenarios when you actually need three in one turn. The stuck command is unfortunate since it takes a quick action, four mana and a vine. Id rather just use a deployed tanglevine. Overall, a pretty weak weapon IMHO.

Bloodspine Wall Much better than the wall of thorns; Id go as far as to say it makes it obsolete (for the Druid). Not only does it cost less mana, but the attack affects any monster that passes through. Plus its unavoidable. Plus it can bleed living creatures with 66.4% chance. Extremely reasonable to use extendable on since it has a low mana cost and the spell is only level 1. Also, using thornlashers to snatch creatures through the walls is delightful. Id definitely keep a couple in my book.

Corrosive Orchid This flower has bite! I love that its attacks can corrode and that it has the conjuration rule of attacking before or after a friendly creatures action. If this is deployed and you have initiative you can attack and dissolve and potentially corrode with just this flower. Thats pretty good. My  only complaint is that it cant move and can only target 0-0. I had an enemy walk out of its zone which was aggravating since its not really worth a teleport or push just into this flower alone.

Togorah Disappointing without some kind of quick melee attack. This means that even though he is always guarding, its purpose is strictly to be used as a meat shield and nothing more.  The worst part is its armor isnt even that high. Considering this thing costs 2 mana to move and cant swing if it does I find its 21 mana investment a complete liability. I dont even feel using cobra reflexes on this is worth the time summoning this guy.

Kralathor This guy is the man. He can be summoned through the vine tree which is great since he can be deployed. He has good stats and the growth potential is phenomenal. He definitely becomes a high-priority target when he comes out. I feel like he does best against someone with several medium creatures. Lots of creatures can over run him and bigger creatures may be hard to get the final blow on. Situational in my opinion but is very strong when used correctly.

Vine Snapper Hands down my favorite plant with a huge flaw; it cannot uproot. To be fair, for 7 mana the stats on this plant are unreal. They make the perfect cheap guard that can be summoned through vines, discounted through the druid ring or even pop out of seedling pods. It crushes me that the enemy can walk around these guys, though. I really wish I could put more than four in my spell book. I think they are awesome to pop out of a vine on an enemy spawn point (if he uses one) or channeling buildings.

Spitting Raptor Its meant for the beastmaster IMHO. I dont use it on my druid since it has no plant or vine traits and doesnt synergize well with her. As such, I have no comment on its use since this thread is about the Druid.

Raptor Vine A fantastic plant. While it loses a lot of its value against non-living creatures since it has Vampiric, I still think it holds its own weight. Having five dice for 9 mana is pretty impressive, especially since it can be discounted through either her ring, her vine tree, or even a seedling pod. This plant is her bread and butter in my opinion. Since it has such nice stats it needed to be offset by being rooted which is fine. As long as it is able to move then its viable. I keep four in my deck.

Tataree I love that he can heal the conjurations or give mana. He is the only quick creature in the game so far so thats pretty neat. I summon this guy relatively early and set him to work on my conjurations right away. I wish he was not Legendary so I could summon more than one. On an even funnier note, against another druid the first person to spawn it is going to have some laughs.

Thornlasher A really thematic and interesting plant. 7 mana is cheap for its stats and that snatch can be used in very tactical ways. My favorite is pulling things through bloodspine walls. You can also use it to pull things out of position like guards or even a very tasty mage snack into a group of vine snappers or other plants.

Barkskin Can be abused by summoning for a tough round, using regen during upkeep and then not paying its cost. If you have the druid ring summoning this for 3 mana and utilizing cantrip is pretty awesome. Sure, it takes an action but I find myself wondering what to do with my quick cast at times since the Druids plants generally save her all the actions she needs.

Burst of Thorns Solid nuke, but I dont like how I cant target a vine from any range. It feels out of place when you can generally cast her spells through vines  without worry. Destroying the Vine marker is unfortunate. I would probably only use this nuke against a rather strong creature that has armor and can bleed.

Renewing Rain I wish there was a cheaper single target version of this spell. Being a full action and 9 mana is prohibitive. With those flaws this card unfortunately becomes situational at best.

Acid ball Good if you anticipate high-armored targets. Since it only costs her one spell point Id throw in at least one if not 2.

Veterans Belt - The druid has the potential to have a lot of armor if you desire. Converting critical damage to normal damage is pretty powerful. She's one of the few mages I can really see taking use of this item.

___

Bear Strength I love how its only one point for her. Id definitely buff myself with it since I feel the Druid can spare the actions to attack. Throwing it on Kralathor, Vine Snappers or Raptor Vines (more vampiric!) is awesome too. Id include minimum of one in the deck.

Rouse the Beast a pretty awesome card. This can work in great conjunction with deploying her plants and then activating them that round. Since her plants are fairly strong for their cost (and level) plus her not needing many actions I see this as almost a staple.

Hurl Boulder An incredible powerful, mana efficient quick cast nuke. I generally include these in any mage book in case Im in a pinch. Id throw one her way as well.

Hurl Rock (promo) 4 mana for 5 dice is incredible. A reasonable nuke to finish off a creature you were close to killing. 66.4% chance to daze is nothing to sneeze at, either.

Surging Wave Unavoidable and only one point for her spell book. Nice D12 conditions that can potentially  bring enemies into / away from your plants.

Geyser recently ruled that you can extinguish plants with it. Id add it in my book if I anticipated going against some heavy fire spells. If just normal fire is anticipated (IE, no warlock) then I think the mohktari branch ring is good enough.

Dissolve Id probably include one in my deck since corrosive orchids can do it for me in general. Its nice to have a cheaper, quick cast version, though.

Dispel / Seeking Dispel Obviously a must for any mage. Include liberally.

Force Push I think this is borderline a staple on a mage wand for the Druid. It could save her mana rather than bringing several raptor vines forward through uproot. Also, it can bring someone into her unmovable vine snappers / corrosive orchids so they be of use since mages tend to avoid their zones.

Teleport Obviously a staple to any mage. I find it even more so for the Druid considering she can teleport the enemy mage or high end creatures into her unmovable vinesnapers / corrosive orchids. This is also the ONLY WAY for her to move a vine snapper that is in a unwanted zone.

Cobra reflexes Probably the Druids best option for a defense since Reflex Boots are War. Id include one in my book for sure since its in her school.

Heal / group heal / minor heal good if your plants are in a pinch. Group heal is especially good if you have a lot of plants in a zone and are trying to strong arm the opponent.

Eagle Wings Im unsure how Eagle Wings would work on rooted plants. Maybe someone can enlighten me and tell me if its useful?

Falcon Precision Face value unavoidable buff is nice to deal with the forcemaster or creatures with defense (knights, etc). Id include at least one.

Hawkeye If you have the spare actions you can throw this on Thornlashers for some extra damge!

Lion Savagery (promo) I think casting this on Raptor Vines is pretty reasonable since they are most likely going to move. Plus they can gain more vampiric. Pretty solid choice.

Regrowth Same issue here with the regrowth belt. Barkskin seems to make this not necessary since the trait doesnt stack.

Rhino Hide Amazing to cast on yourself or Kralathor. Couple this with a Veterans Belt and Barkskin and you are truly a tank!

Enchanters Ring - It's cheap and a good investment if you plan on buffing yourself. Since the vine tree and seedling pods can take care of most things I can see a scenario where you quick cast enchantments and use your full action to attack.

Bearskin - This was the armor I defaulted to due to it being the nature school. I wish the Frost -2 wasn't so useless, though (at least for now). I would have thrown in a Dragonscale Hauberk since burn is deadly but it costs triple for the Druid.


Regrowth Belt - Doesn't seem necessary since Regeneration doesn't stack and her Barkskin can be "abused" by first regenerating and then not paying the upkeep (or just keeping it on her when she's low HP and/or in danger).

Mana Flower - Seems to be her default channeling building since it's in the Nature School. It has the plant sub-type so her seedling pods can grow up and become plants if you have the time to build your economy.

Altar of the Iron Guard (promo) - While this is war (triple points for Druid) it may be a good idea to have one on the board. Summoning a vine snapper (or other plans) through vines in a strategic location with guard seems extremely useful for offense or defense.

Wall of Thorns - Is not a vine which is a bummer. Since level 1 creatures aren't attacked I find this wall rather weak. It wont help you in most swarms. I feel like the higher creatures that will be affected wont be phased since most have decent armor and it's multiple two-die attacks.

Fellella I could see her being useful buffing the druid and acting as a source of income if she sticks around for several rounds. The main issue is the druid herself has to full cast her. Situational for sure, but Fellella is a consideration.

My biggest complaint I have about the druid is her creatures / conjurations that cant be moved and mages simply avoid their zone. The Vine Snapper and Corrosive Orchid are the main two that cause me woes. I feel like Im wasting their potential if I spread either of them out and dont make a kill zone. Speaking of a kill zone, I think its pretty cool to set up a few vine snappers and orchids together and teleport a mage in. This has the same feeling of the Golem Pit.

I would love to see more treants at varying mana levels. They can be small or medium treants that have various purposes. The plants are great thematically but a real druid has some treants on her side!

I am disappointed at her lack of variety with her plant creatures. I honestly wouldn't even mind if I could put more than four vine snappers,  thornlashers or raptor vines in my book, but I cant. That means I have very few creatures that synergize with the Druid well. Please release at least four more creatures for her in future expansions!

I wish there was some way to heal her conjurations, especially her bonded tree, besides just renewing rain (only two points is weak) and taratee. It seems the only way to keep them safe is guards and just keeping them away in general. I'd love for a single target conjuration heal, living or not.

Id love for any recommendations for spells, usage or any general strategy to help make my druid more potent. Thanks for the read and suggestions!

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