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Thread: PvE Warriors - Early evaluation of potential of each race

  1. #1

    PvE Warriors - Early evaluation of potential of each race

    Disclaimer #1 Evaluation based on preview information captured at GenCon that may not reflect finished article & does not reveal bonus traits of other
    races.
    Disclaimer #2 This evaluation just looks at the potential for race-based decks with regards to the revealed Warrior themes, not the overall viability of playing as a chosen race e.g. making a Coyotle Warrior and playing an Orc rush deck.

    So which aspects will I be evaluating?

    Racial Affinity = Flexibility while satisfying the requirement to include 8 troops of the character's race in their deck, for an Affinity bonus.
    Warrior Affinity = Potential to build a race-based deck while maximizing Warriors for the Affinity: Warriors talent (gain a charge on play).
    Dinosaur Affinity = Potential for a race-based deck to take advantage of the Affinity: Dinosaurs talent (50% chance of +2/+2 on play).
    Training = Potential for a race-based deck to benefit from the many Training talents (randomly enhance troops at start of game).
    Blacksmithing = Potential for a race-based deck to benefit from the Blacksmithing talent (50% of equipped cards get cost -1).

    The scale is simply * for below average potential, ** for pretty-awesome potential, *** for exceptionally-awesome potential.

    Coyotle Warrior

    Racial Affinity = **
    Coytole score well in this regard, as they have solid representation in 3 shards and adhere to core themes in each; sapphire Coyotle enhance actions & offer flight, wild Coyotle ramp & buff.
    The only thing holding them back is that their diamond troops simply aren't competitive (although an eqipped Mesa Lookout is a nice alternative to conventional removal).

    Warrior Affinity = **
    With 6 troops spread across 3 shards, the Coyotle are a ways off being able to create Warrior decks currently.
    However Howling Brave and Wakuna Crowfeather are amongst their ranks, so they have a good foundation & some benefit from this talent in normal decks.

    Dinosaur Affinity = ***
    You can't go wrong supplementing dinosaurs with Howling Brave for ramp, so you only need to find another decent troop to satisfy both Affinities (Sight of the Sun or Wildwood Beastcaller, if you have them).

    Training = **
    Currently Coyotle suffer from mediocre attributes across the board; they're far from the worst in this regard, but from a combat perspective they aren't individually intimidating.
    There's plenty of potential for prophecy effect maximization if you have a means to tell if your next troop is Trained, and also for quick Trained troops - we just need to see more Coyotle decks garnering attention with either of those themes.

    Blacksmithing = **
    There are no downsides to discounting Coyotle of course, but there simply aren't many fantastic scenarios for them either; their race-based decks seem to be more about quick timing and preparing to draw the next extra-special card, so paying less for any given card isn't especially valuable for them relative to anyone else.

    Dwarf Warrior

    Racial Affinity = *
    Dwarves are amongst the least flexible races, as they have only 2 shards and are so heavily centred on artifact/robot decks.
    It is a definite challenge to fit 8 Dwarves in to non-Dwarf decks as so few of them are competitive for general play; Scraptech Brawler plus Fissuresmith or the bomb Dwarves are perhaps the only options.

    Warrior Affinity = *
    Dwarves are a non-starter for this one; they are a Warrior deficient race (4 total including Cavern Guard), they're heavily invested in sapphire (minimal Warriors of any race), and their racial theme is based on robots who simply don't have classes.

    Dinosaur Affinity = *
    Lack both wild cards and any theme which could support dinosaurs.

    Training = *
    Sadly Dwarf race-based decks have probably the least Training potential, as Training only enhances troops that exist as troops in your deck at the start of the game - robots that are created, transformed or originate from Construction Plans (etc.) cannot be Trained.
    On top of this, Dwarves themselves are a weak foundation for Training because most of them are defensively orientated and below curve for their cost.

    Blacksmithing = *
    It's a close call, but my evaluation is Dwarves simply have less to gain than most races; they can already have 3 troops in play on turn 1 and an army on turn 2, and Blacksmithing won't do much to accelerate this as Dwarves tend to have cheap cards because they pay the costs in other ways (e.g. having troops in play, exhausting troops for plans).
    Blacksmithing is handy for everyone, but lowering the cost of Construction Plans: War Hulk or Electroid is a smaller gain in comparison.

    Note: I do expect that Dwarf Warriors will have some tricks up their sleeves with regards to their Dwarf Warrior Bonus Traits, that should allow them to play by their own rules e.g. making all robots Warriors, Training robots as they are created/transformed.

    Elf Warrior

    Racial Affinity = *
    Elves fall a little short in this regard because their ruby shard coverage was only introduced 3 sets in, which effectively limits them to wild & ruby/wild decks.
    The good news is that the Elf ramp theme is almost-universally attractive, so it's easy to fit 8 Elves into a deck when the shards allow it.

    Warrior Affinity = *
    There aren't many Elves currently, and of the 5 Warrior troops they do have only Mentor of Oakhenge is particularly competitive.
    Mentor of Oakhenge can find a home in any wild Warrior deck, but unless Warrior of Andronicus gets some good equipment he'll probably need to carry some dead-weight along for Affinity's sake.

    Dinosaur Affinity = ***
    As a wild race with a ramp theme, Elves are an ideal complement to dinosaurs.

    Training = **
    Elves make competent Training subjects with plentiful cheap troops and a few shock & awe candidates e.g. Constantina, Nelebrin Skirmisher.
    However they aren't rush troops nor do they possess any natural combat abilities to supplement Training, so not exactly top tier.

    Blacksmithing = *
    Resources aren't an issue for race-based Elf decks, and in fact discounts may do more harm than good if they drop any cards from cost 5 to cost 4.

    Human Warrior

    Racial Affinity = ***
    Humans cover a solid 3 shards, but most importantly they contribute staple troops to every shard they appear in - it's easy to fit 8 in a deck.

    Warrior Affinity = ***
    Humans are one of the few races able to easily field a deck composed only of Warriors (diamond or dual/triple shard), and they can do so in style given Warrior troops such as Highlands Shinobi, Protectorate Defender and Spearcliff Cloud Knight.
    As mentioned earlier there's minimal sapphire support for Warriors, but Humans have the best shot at splashing it with Cerulean Mirror Knight.

    Dinosaur Affinity = *
    While there is perhaps cheeky potential for a dual-shard dinosaur Inspire deck, I've never seen it done and Humans simply don't have any established dinosaur synergy.

    Training = ***
    Race-based Human decks depend on fielding a foundation of cheap about-on-curve troops (Inspire seldom carries much of an attribute penalty), so Training would seem an excellent match.
    Pets won't benefit directly (except for the Royal Falconer's), but on the other hand angels have tremendous Training potential.

    Blacksmithing = ***
    Collectively Humans would greatly benefit from cost reduction - as they have the most expensive player-race troops & no ramp - but their Inspire theme in particular has great potential.
    There are some interactions that need to be considered with regard to cost 3 top tier troops (e.g. Cloud Knight), but in general their finishers are expensive enough that discounts will always interact favourably with Inspire.

    Necrotic Warrior

    Racial Affinity = **
    Necrotic appear in 4 shards, which gives them an immediate advantage with regards to flexibility.
    All that is holding them back is that they don't yet have troops that players go out of their way for - they don't make a shameful contribution in any given shard, but nor would you necessarily pick 8 Necrotic troops outside of a race-based deck.
    Ruby and diamond have the most versatile troops, while blood Necrotic are bit bogged down by their race themes and sapphire Necrotic are marked down for their lack of action support.

    Warrior Affinity = *
    Given how many Necrotic there already are, they are quite deficient in regards to Warriors - just 4 (Subtle Striker is banned in PvE), and they're all diamond but for the unpopular High Tomb Lord.
    Given Necrotic will likely have an 'enmity' trait for Humans (like Orcs have to pay cost +1 for Vennen) and the majority of diamond Warriors are Human, this makes Necrotic Warrior decks a non-starter.

    Dinosaur Affinity = *
    Similar to Inspire, Shift may have untapped dinosaur potential (particularly ruby) - but at a fundamental level Necrotic are bereft of wild cards, so they aren't a natural ally of dinosaurs.

    Training = **
    This is a toughie; Training has excellent synergy with a Shift theme, as trained troops make excellent targets for Shifting (unless trying to Shift keywords they already have).
    On the other hand, Necrotic are another race that are below-curve for their cost - so pound-for-pound a Trained Necrotic is likely to be less threatening than anything besides a Trained Dwarf.
    It's also not known yet if reversion will remove Training from a troop, but if it does then that is a big mark down for race-based Necrotic decks.

    Blacksmithing = ***
    As a result of their below-curve nature, Necrotic would benefit greatly from cost reduction.
    Last edited by Vorsa; 08-06-2015 at 09:17 AM.

  2. #2
    Orc Warrior

    Racial Affinity = *
    This surprised me a bit, but looking through the full list I really don't see many Orcs that are competitive outside of Orc decks - Arena Regular and Darkspire Priestess are great picks, but then it's a bit of a gulf to the next candidates.

    Warrior Affinity = ***
    Orcs have easy access to a Warrior-only blood/ruby deck, that includes the Arena Regular and the entire Mountain God theme - they also have probably the easiest such deck to collect, with 5 common troops and 5 uncommon.
    The good news is that there's no such thing as a worthless Orc in an Orc deck (an equipped Furyseeker is actually tailored to this theme deck), but the bad news is that not one of the ruby cost 1 Orcs is a Warrior - so this deck may be a little slow without Blacksmithing.

    Dinosaur Affinity = *
    Besides the lack of a wild element, Orcs aren't strong contributors outside of their race-based decks.

    Training = ***
    Orcs are perhaps unparalleld Training candidates, as they specialize in cheap high-impact troops.
    Ruby has the cost 1 multitude for devastating synergy, while The Mountain God blood troops are all outstanding heavy-hitters with their above-curve bodies.

    Blacksmithing = ***
    As a rush centred race with limited ramp & troop creation, Orcs benefit enormously from being able to get their whole hand on to the field a.s.a.p.

    Shin'hare Warrior

    Racial Affinity = **
    While pepople don't tend to 'splash' Shin'hare (beyond Monsuun), Shin'hare do have respectable options to take in non-Shin'hare decks; blood has plenty of options for removal or sacrifice, wild has Moon'ariu Sensei and Cottontail Ronin/Bucktooth Bannerbunny for if it's worth investing.

    Warrior Affinity = *
    Shin'hare are not as Warrior-centric as you might think, with only 2 blood Warriors - both unique - and 6 wild Warriors of varying quality; sadly both Battle Hoppers & Shin'hare Militia are classless.
    It is possible to make a mostly-Warrior deck out of these cards in conjunction with Battle Hopper creators (to take advantage of Hop'Hiro, Nori and the wild options), but that's about as far as the potential stretches.

    Dinosaur Affinity = **
    As mentioned above, you can drop Moon'ariu Sensei and Cottontail Ronin/Bucktooth Bannerbunny into any wild deck for the affinity bonus - it won't enhance the dinosaur theme, but nor will it detract.

    Training = **
    Training Shin'hare is a thorny subject; Battle Hoppers can't be Trained and there's zero upside to Training sacrificial troops, but on the other hand Shin'hare offer a lot of suitable solid cheap bodies and some outstanding candidates (e.g. Wazikashi Ambusher, Tormented Ritualist).
    I think the fairest assessment would be to say that current Shin'hare deck designs mightn't be the best for Training up, but that there is considerable scope for optimization in this area.

    Blacksmithing = **
    Like Orcs, there's a lot of positives to Shin'hare decks getting their cards played a.s.a.p.
    Unlike Orcs though, Shin'hare have a lot of tunnelers for whom the cost reduction from Blacksmithing will have no effect.

    Vennen Warrior

    Vennen Affinity = *
    Given Vennen barely exist outside of blood, they're at an immediate flexibility disadvantage even before factoring in that as of set 3 their entire race shares a single Vennen-specific theme...
    There's only scope to include Vennen in another blood deck, and even then it's limited to Xentoth's Inquisitor plus either Brood Creeper or Rot Caster.

    Warrior Affinity = *
    There are only 3 Vennen Warriors, of which just Exarch of the Egg is well-regarded (Xentoth's Chosen and Hatchery Broodguard are the others) - so no scope for a race-based Warrior deck, or even to get value from this talent in a regular Vennen deck.

    Dinosaur Affinity = *
    As they have no wild cards and the few Vennen suitable outside of race-based decks are expensive blood cards, there's no sense trying to include them in a dinosaur deck.

    Training = ***
    They may not be Warriors, but Vennen decks are actually strong candidates for training; Vennen themselves tend to be very sturdy, while the addition of speed & steadfast accelerate their bane threat significantly.
    Furthermore the Vennen have a knack for working control/removal & draw effects on to troops, which makes the likes of a Trained Nazhk Webguard or Xentoth's Inquisitor a threat in ways actions cannot be.

    Blacksmithing = ***
    There are significant upsides to discounting Vennen, as their race-based decks strive to get the strongest combination of special effects on the board that resources allow - getting an Arachnomancer or Brood Baron on the board one turn earlier will likely bring the whole masterplan forward a turn.

    ##### Referenced Traits #####

    AFFINITY: ORCS (Orc race trait)
    At the start of each game, if you have 8 or more Orc troops in your deck, a random troop in your hand gets Speed. (this can't target a troop that already has Speed)

    VENNEN DESPISERS (Orc race trait)
    Vennen troops in your deck have cost +1.

    TRAINING: BRUTALITY (Orc race class trait)
    WARRIOR ONLY: Your trained troops also get Rage 1.

    AFFINITY: WARRIORS
    Warrior Troops in your deck get "when this enters play, gain a charge."

    TRAINING: COMBAT
    At the start of each game, each troop in your deck has a 25% chance to become trained. Trained troops get +1[ATK]/+1[DEF].

    TRAINING: DEPLOYMENT
    Trained troops also get Speed.

    CLASS GEMS
    Minor: +25% chance for this troop to trigger Training Talents. Major: When this troop enters play, it may battle target troop.

    TRAINING: TACTICS
    Trained Troops also get Swiftstrike and Steadfast.

    TRAINING: GROUNDS
    2 POINTS
    Your Training Talent has +25% trigger chance.

    BLACKSMITHING
    2 POINTS
    At the start of each game, half of the equipped cards in your deck get cost -1, or all of the equipped cards get cost -1 for 100+ cards in your deck.

    AFFINITY: DINOSAURS
    2 POINTS
    Dinosaurs in your deck get "When this enters play under your control, there is a 50% chance it gets +2ATK/+2DEF."
    Last edited by Vorsa; 08-06-2015 at 09:23 AM.

  3. #3
    Gigantisaur
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    Just wanted to say wow thank you!
    Buying Gold 120 gold per platinum details Here

    IGN ALCHEMY KICKSTARTER BACKER MEMBER OF THE UNNAMED COUNCIL

  4. #4
    Quote Originally Posted by hammer View Post
    Just wanted to say wow thank you!
    Much time on my hands now, as I'm on holiday and all Convocation'd out!

  5. #5
    Wow, great post.

    I hope to have a dinosaur riding orc warrior! Sounds like a blast.

  6. #6
    So either the power level of PvE is going to be huge, or this character is going to need balanced. If you go a training build, then your trained Fang of the Mountain Gods (about 50% of the ones in your deck) are 3/3, Rage 1, Speed, Swiftstrike, Steadfast for 1. If you combine that with Berserking and Perfect Army. Then that is up to 11 damage before your opponent has even had a turn.

    If you can figure out how to start the game with less than 10 health, and have Boots of Bloody Tribute, then you are dealing 4 additional damage.

    If you can activate both activatable abilities then you can deal 4 additional damage and leave your opponent DAZED, whatever that means. Unless I missed something, this is obtainable at level 18.

    At higher levels you can get Fortification and The Best Defense to add 2 additional damage.

    With Lead From The Front, it becomes rage 2, and adds 3 additional damage.

    If you have Heart of the Champion in your hand, then you are dealing 7 - 12 additional damage.

    Blacksmithing or Inspiring Presence could let you play a second trained card for free. Adding 5-18 damage.


    So to conclude, if you are playing vs a fully leveled PvE warrior, you need to either be able to do something before you have even had a turn, or be able to survive 26 damage, which will occur if the opponent starts with a trained 1/1 for 1 and a trained 1/1 for 0 due to Blacksmithing or Inspiring Presence.

    Edit: Quick math suggests this is do-able in 66% of games with a deck built around it.
    Last edited by loopholist3; 08-07-2015 at 07:35 AM.

  7. #7
    They can pretty much do whatever they want in pve, from making opponents start at 80 health to starting with 10 resources to starting with a field full of blockers.

  8. #8
    Master Theorycrafter
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    I think PvE will just blow our minds away. The Gen Con taste was beautiful but what can be executed is so much more :-).
    HexHunterMokog:

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  9. #9
    I think - given the gulf in quality between training bonuses and "random troop in starting hand gets" bonuses - that the timing of training & blacksmithing (and other "At the start of each game" deck effects) is going to be after drawing your starting hand.

    So while going 2nd and top-docking a trained cost 0-1 will be a glorious possibility, I don't think the opening salvo is going to be quite that devastating.

    As good as a trained Fang of the Mountain God would be, possibly Moon'ariu Sensei is the enabler for the most extreme scenarios...
    Last edited by Vorsa; 08-06-2015 at 03:52 PM.

  10. #10
    Gigantisaur
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    I am looking forward to the multitude of comboes that can exist and that even the developers will not have taken into consideration.
    The art work for opening the chest is very nice.

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