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Author Topic: Rise of the warlock swarms  (Read 8577 times)

Halewijn

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Rise of the warlock swarms
« on: August 23, 2016, 06:28:13 PM »
In my opinion, demon swarms were up until recently not very strong. [mwcard=MW1J17]Pentagram[/mwcard] is both fragile as expensive and the mana additions do not come easy during the beginning of the game. There were only 2 level 1 demons: an all-round [mwcard=MW1C15]Firebrand Imp[/mwcard] and a teleporting, piercing [mwcard=MWSTX2FFC13]Wildfire Imp[/mwcard]. In theory, the swarm could be enforced with [mwcard=MWSTX2FFC08]Infernian Scourgers[/mwcard] to make a nice level 1 and level 2 mix. All in all, nothing very impressive.


The academy warlock changes this entirely because it brings some very awesome new demons into the game:

1) Sanguine Hunter: Not much mana? no problem! This little demon only costs 3 mana! yes, it needs to take some damage, but the adramelech can use her demonic reward to heal him afterwards. 2 dice, piercing 1 and 1 armor is not bad at all!

2) Firefist brawler: This guy just punches everything untill it burns. If it rolls at least 1 critical damage, it gives a burn to its victim. For one dice, the chances are not impressive (33%), but combined with smoldering curses, [mwcard=MW1E27]Marked for Death[/mwcard], [mwcard=MWSTX2FFQ02]Bloodfire Helmet[/mwcard], Drakas, ... and many more effects he can have a ridicolously high burn chance. (80% for 4 dice)

3 Drakas, Imp overlord: Very similar to [mwcard=MWBG1C04]Slaknir, Goblin Chieftain[/mwcard], this guy will boost all demons in his zone.

4) Mheggeden, Sealed demon: One of the big difficulties with swarms is the huge set-up time required. Mheggeden allows you to summon an amazing demon at the start of the game while still not mana draining you. Of course, you have to pay some way, but at least your swarm will have a big guy supporting them from the beginning. In general, I like these kinds of new cards a lot. (Ehren, Slavorg, and lightning raptor in lesser extend)

These are the main 4 cards that really buff demon swarms a LOT. I left out the combustion demon, because I don't think he is worth it in arena. He's solid in academy though. There are also some very solid level 2 demons outclassing the scourger many times (Afflicted demon especially). Sharkbaits aggressive fireball-adramelech warlock has been rocking for a long time, but I believe demon swarms might actually become very viable now.  :)





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Boocheck

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Re: Rise of the warlock swarms
« Reply #1 on: August 24, 2016, 01:14:23 AM »
Swarming Adramelech was a first thing i was trying to build when Academy Warlock hit me :)

Yet, i am questioning myself, if Swarm as a strategy is viable for any other mage then Beastmaster and Necromancer.

You need to have Spawnpoint to be able to cast 2 creatures per turn. Without spawn point, your 4 first rounds of casting Level 1 creatures compared to 2 turns of level 3 creatures seems not in favor of Swarms.

Some spawnpoints require 2 or more mana for them to be able cast creature. [mwcard=MW1J17]Pentagram[/mwcard], [mwcard=FWJ03]Barracks[/mwcard], [mwcard=MW1J07]Gate to Voltari[/mwcard], [mwcard=MW1J23]Temple of Asyra[/mwcard] are exactly those Spawnpoints requiring more mana and action to just work for Swarm strategy. Compared to [mwcard=MW1J10]Lair[/mwcard] or [mwcard=DNQ05]Libro Mortuos[/mwcard], all those spawnpoints seems to be for Level 2 and more creatures.

Is there anyone out there with working swarming Warlock or Warlord books?

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Mystery

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Re: Rise of the warlock swarms
« Reply #2 on: August 24, 2016, 02:58:18 AM »
what do you consider as working I have a swarm deck from the Playtesting for the Warlock it does work, but can't beat my top tier books of course.

The main problem is that as you state Pentagramm is weak, it is simply 2mana over costed, as you cant get the trigger as easily as Gate to Voltari (extra mana already turn 1) or so much like Graveyard most of the time. And it has it's inherent weakness to Wizard and Forcemaster and swarm is spellbook commiting so you can't just play something else against them.

The idea anyhow was:
Penmtagram
Harmonize

Mheggedan
Hunter -dmg mheggedan
something else depending on oponent

Hunter -dmg mgheggedan
Hunter -dmg mgheegedan
free action

Hunter/brawler whatever you need

and then sacrifice mheggeda once all hunters are out at a Sacrificial Altar for a nice attack on something (recomend brawler with 9dice? pierce 4 and almost garanteed burn)
you can cast rise again on Mgheggedan for another 4 dice, pierce 4 for 5 mana

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Re: Rise of the warlock swarms
« Reply #3 on: August 24, 2016, 03:52:45 AM »
what do you consider as working I have a swarm deck from the Playtesting for the Warlock it does work, but can't beat my top tier books of course.

The main problem is that as you state Pentagramm is weak, it is simply 2mana over costed, as you cant get the trigger as easily as Gate to Voltari (extra mana already turn 1) or so much like Graveyard most of the time. And it has it's inherent weakness to Wizard and Forcemaster and swarm is spellbook commiting so you can't just play something else against them.


[mwcard=MW1J17]Pentagram[/mwcard] and [mwcard=MW1E20]Harmonize[/mwcard] thats 18 Mana Opening

now you are forced to cast Mheggedan 6 Mana to be able to cast Low mana Hunters 3 Mana.

Your First 2 rounds consumed to establish Swarm for Warlock for 24 mana (Penta+Harmo+Mhegg) or 18 Without Meg.

If you are a Warlord, its [mwcard=FWJ03]Barracks[/mwcard] for 12 mana and [mwcard=FWJ04]Garrison Post[/mwcard] for 4 thats 16 mana to start swarming.

Compared this to beastmaster, which can cast 2 creatures from the start without mana invested into setup not mentioning the actions, you will probably end up in better situation if you just Hard Casted two level 3 creatures.

If we had such a card like
Quote
"Pentagram of Summoning" Upkeep pay 1 life. Each nonlegendardy level 1 creature can be cast as quickcast.

I think that my main idea i was trying to tell is, that Beastmaster and Necro ARE swarm mages. Other mages can do swarm, but a same way you do Fire Druid :) Warlock lady should be able to be a Swarm mages, yet her tools doesnt allow it :(




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Sailor Vulcan

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Rise of the warlock swarms
« Reply #4 on: August 24, 2016, 06:45:23 AM »
You guys need to be attacking in order to raise the mana of pentagram. If you're not attacking it will be mana starved.

You know that warlocks like to attack stuff right? They don't just stand back and hard cast creatures very much. But if the warlock is using both his main action and his quick cast to attack that makes up for the disadvantage since beastmaster is more likely summoning creatures to fight for him with his quickcast rather than just attacking with it. If you wait to summon pentagram until right before you attack, then they will probably be less likely to destroy the pentagram because they'll be preoccupied by you smashing their face in.


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« Last Edit: August 24, 2016, 06:51:13 AM by Sailor Vulcan »
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Re: Rise of the warlock swarms
« Reply #5 on: August 24, 2016, 07:55:16 AM »
You guys need to be attacking different target enemy creatures in order to raise the mana of pentagram. If you're not attacking it will be mana starved.

FTFY.

The problem with [mwcard=MW1J17]Pentagram[/mwcard] is that, in order to maximize its channeling, your opponent has to cooperate by giving you enemy creatures to target. Against a solo or single buddy mage, you aren't going to get value out of your Pentagram because you won't have enough different enemy creatures to target. And even still, it is generally a better strategy to focus on a single target until it is defeated rather than splitting your fire across many targets (presumably without killing them), so Pentagram encourages you to use a suboptimal strategy even in the (relatively rare) instances where it might otherwise be possible to maximize its channeling.  For instance, in multiplayer Domination, where there are likely many enemy target creatures (and Sslaks) available, you'd usually rather have your Imp swarm focus on a single Sslak (or Cervere or whatever is the most important target at the moment) rather than split their fire between 2 or more targets.

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Coshade

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Re: Rise of the warlock swarms
« Reply #6 on: August 24, 2016, 08:20:19 AM »
I recommend this if you want a fun swarmy Warlock. I think it needs to be updated, but it was decent in its time.

Unholy Summoner --> http://forum.arcanewonders.com/index.php?topic=16420.0

Here is a changelog for it --> http://forum.arcanewonders.com/index.php?topic=16421.msg63437#msg63437

Warlocks don't function like other mages for swarming. The best way to use the pentagram is by casting it mid game as you are about to attack. Sailor has it right when he says you don't want to harmonize T1 just to get out creatures every round.
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Laddinfance

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Re: Rise of the warlock swarms
« Reply #7 on: August 24, 2016, 09:22:13 AM »
just for note, the pentagram can only gain 2 extra mana so your opponent only has to play one creature for you to be able to get your "max". Not saying there aren't issues involved their, just trying to keep perspective.

Halewijn

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Re: Rise of the warlock swarms
« Reply #8 on: August 24, 2016, 09:48:40 AM »
I agree that you are mana starved in the beginning and it might all be for nothing BUT academy has some darn good cards to help you out now. Cheaper enchantments, etc...

My opening was this:

T1: pentagram + harmonize 1 mana left
T2: mgheddon + 2 enchantments 2 mana left
T3: hunter + battle forge + melee attack

Afterwards, I spawn cheap guys, cast cheap armor, and cast cheap curses plus melee attack with the warlock (which also gives mana to pentagram)

I'm not saying it was incredibly strong, but my opponents did not focus on pentagram. In a couple of turns my mage was very deadly and attacking, Mgheddon was a huge asset and the little guys supported and punched everything ablaze. I loved it. Maybe it could be better to switch battle forge and pentagram without using harmonize.
« Last Edit: August 24, 2016, 09:50:15 AM by Halewijn »
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Re: Rise of the warlock swarms
« Reply #9 on: August 24, 2016, 10:25:27 AM »
yeah Mghedden gets very scary very fast. That Elusive trait is also very good.
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baronzaltor

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Re: Rise of the warlock swarms
« Reply #10 on: August 24, 2016, 02:24:12 PM »
Mghs best use is to not even bother with the seals or waiting for him to hatch.

For 6 mana he is +4 Melee and +4 Pierce by feeding him to a Sacrificial Altar. 

Then its only 3 mana to Animate Dead him and RE-sacrifice him for another +4 Melee/Pierce

If you really want to get your milage out of him, summon him.. then let your Sanguine Hunters poke him with their "summon damage" THEN use the Altar to buff the hunters.

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Re: Rise of the warlock swarms
« Reply #11 on: August 24, 2016, 02:36:44 PM »
Mghs best use is to not even bother with the seals or waiting for him to hatch.

For 6 mana he is +4 Melee and +4 Pierce by feeding him to a Sacrificial Altar. 

Then its only 3 mana to Animate Dead him and RE-sacrifice him for another +4 Melee/Pierce

If you really want to get your milage out of him, summon him.. then let your Sanguine Hunters poke him with their "summon damage" THEN use the Altar to buff the hunters.

as i wrote ;)

Halewijn

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Re: Rise of the warlock swarms
« Reply #12 on: August 24, 2016, 05:37:27 PM »
That's freaking dark.  8)

Summon a sealed, super strong demon. Slaughter it yourself, to reanimate it afterwards and slaughter it again..
Is it warlock only, I don't have the set with me? If not, the necromancer could even use it to fuel his graveyard. (I think this would be borderline OP)
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Re: Rise of the warlock swarms
« Reply #13 on: August 24, 2016, 06:52:02 PM »
That's freaking dark.  8)

Summon a sealed, super strong demon. Slaughter it yourself, to reanimate it afterwards and slaughter it again..
Is it warlock only, I don't have the set with me? If not, the necromancer could even use it to fuel his graveyard. (I think this would be borderline OP)

I would like to point out that if killing a demon is a "dark" thing to do, what does that say about the ethical value of demons?

:P


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baronzaltor

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Re: Rise of the warlock swarms
« Reply #14 on: August 24, 2016, 07:30:38 PM »
That's freaking dark.  8)

Summon a sealed, super strong demon. Slaughter it yourself, to reanimate it afterwards and slaughter it again..
Is it warlock only, I don't have the set with me? If not, the necromancer could even use it to fuel his graveyard. (I think this would be borderline OP)
Hes not Warlock only, but you can only reanimate him once.  After the Animate brings him back, he has a zombie marker on him, so he will be obliterated when he dies the second time.

But yeah, if a Graveyard is in play you could spend 6 to summon him, sac him on the alter and get 4 mana added to the spawnpoint while getting a +4 Melee/Pierce boost.   Then get 4 mana more re-sac'ing him after Animating him.  Your graveyard would get 8 mana out of the deal, and youd spend 9 between Meh and the reanimate.  Not a huge gain, but itd basically be a huge damage boost that almost pays for itself int aht case.