• Control Card Archetypes Part 2 - The "Can't" Cards

    Welcome back! This week we will be taking a look at some of the "can't" cards that stop your opponent from doing things like attacking, blocking, purchasing, fielding and targeting (I'll hit this next week). Hopefully we are able to expose you to some new and useful cards!

    [top]Can't Attack or Block

    Constantine - Hellblazer

    I think this one is pretty straight-forward and one that a lot of us use. Basically, if your opponent fields the character that you've named, they can't attack with any dice of that character that are in the field. While this card alone can do tons of damage, if you're able to pair it with a card that KO's dice, you can tactically disrupt your opponents ability to attack with specific dice. I think the "can't attack" is often overshadowed by the blanking ability that we all love.

    Deadman - Posessive Talents

    This card has it all! You aren't able to attack, or block! Its a high cost being a 5 , but the ability to completely lock down a die's ability to do anything but sit there a look pretty, is pretty great. Just a reminder to everyone - Deadman locks down a single die, not all copies. So the only way that your opponent can clear the effect of your Deadman is to remove their die that you named, or remove your Deadman. So unless they brought a KO effect card of global (BEWD, Fabricate, etc.), or a text blanking ability on your dice, they are really stuck. It's a fantastic card that isn't used a lot, but is amazing on the big, expensive dice that your opponent buys.

    Scarecrow - Legion of Doom

    Although this card only stops cards with a 2A or smaller from rushing you, this is still HUGE! Coming in at only 4, this die does some work. There are so many ways to manipulate your opponents attack stats that makes this card even better. Cards like Venom - Angelo Fortunato (-2/-2 to all non-), Emma Frost - Graceful ( get -1) OP Scarlet Witch (-2/-3 to all avengers), Doctor Doom - Reed Richards' Rival (-1/-1 all non-villains) and the global on Doctor Doom - Nemesis ( pay to give a target character -1/-1 if you have a villain active), and probably the best of all - Transfer Power Global (pay . Swap the attack value of one of your characters with that of one opposing character.) I've personally build teams with Venom and Transfer Power and they worked amazingly! It's also very important to note that this effect happens before any "when attacks" pumps may happen. So no bard pump if bard isn't on level 3!

    Kitty Pryde - Shadowcat and The Front Line BAC

    It's all about the global on these two. Basically, choose an opponents die and pay a or and and your opponent can't attack or can't block unless your opponent pays 1 life. These globals aren't great, but they do chip away at your opponents life (way better than damage since it doesn't trigger anything). Now you are opening yourself up to letting your opponent use them against you as well, but that is always the risk with nearly every global.

    Cloudkill BAC

    A favorite now that Swords/Relentless is banned, this 3 cost BAC is vicious, but without the struggle ;-) We all know about its ability to deal 1 damage and the characters damaged by this ability can't block...... but..... they also can't attack....... So now you're thinking, big deal.... I can't attack on my opponents turn. True, but here is something that I think you can do that can totally disrupt your opponent! Get out Mr. Mxyzptlk: 5th Dimension (the fancy full art of course!) and just let him chill in the field. When your opponent uses Cloudkill to go for the win, you get to use one on them as well! So now everything they have can't attack you! It's not a guarantee of course, but man it could be really frustrating to play against!

    Villainous Pact BAC

    Another BAC that you are familiar with, but probably just because you use the global. Well friends, the ability of this BAC is ridiculous! IF your opponent (or you if you planned poorly) don't have any villains, well then you only have 1 blocker. Please be careful with this card, especially in draft! If you see that your opponent has brought it and they don't have many villains, buy it! If they do and you don't, you should doubly buy it as protection! Also, if you pair VP with any of the following cards, you can choose a character that can't block this turn, essentially making ALL of your characters unblockable (if they don't have any villains):

    Hell Hound - Master Fiend
    Spider-Man - Hero for Hire
    Doctor Octopus - Megalomaniac
    Kryptonite Threat - Basic Action Card
    Give Me a Break! - Basic Action Card
    Blue Dragon - Apprentice Dragon
    Lizard - Sewer Dweller
    Black Canary - Dinah Laurel Lance (pay a )
    Captain Cold - Leonard Snart (pay a )
    Gwen Stacy - Spider Ally (pay a )

    Frost Giant: Greater Elemental

    Ok, go with me on this one for a second. I know its a 6 so it's a lot harder to get than a 4 or 5 cost on turn 3, but follow me down the rabbit hole. What if I get it out in time and force Bard to not block it. Now the bard cant' attack. And it's equipable, so you can put a helmet on it and DWiz can't blank it, Cloudkill can't damage it, and it can't be Imprisoned! It also ins't a while active, so you name the character and unless they are able to blank the card, it stands as named. So yeah..... maybe? Worth a shot right?! It could be fun and interesting, and different. I'd love to hear your feedback on this one!

    Honorable Mentions
    Kilowog - Poozer
    Selective Shield BAC
    Vibranium Shield - Irreplaceable
    Spellbinding Circle BAC

    [top]Can't Field or Purchase

    Joker - Clown Prince of Crime and Loki - Gem Keeper

    There's not much to be said about these cards that hasn't already been said. They've been on our Top 10 Podcast list of and cards (definitely take a listen if you haven't), and they are all around awesome. Coming in at 5 or respectively, they completely lock down a character die from being fielded. They can get around it by using polymorph, but more than likely you are naming something that has a "when fielded" effect, or something that will quickly win your opponent the game. I prefer Loki because it has a larger D on all faces (yes it has a smaller A on 2 faces, but you definitely aren't attacking with this die), but its so hard not to use the full art version of Joker! Pair this with Hellblazer and you have now locked down 2 cards from having a "when fielded" effect, or three if you use both of the above!

    Mr. Freeze: Heart of Ice

    I already spoke about this card last week, but it deserves another mention. By using the ability, you effectively say "you can't field this die." Its awesome. Try it out! I don't think you'll be disappointed!

    Professor X: Charles Francis Xavier

    There's other Professor X's?! Truth. This one is super fun to play with! Bring this with Jinzo - I know, they are both 6 costs, but your opponent will have PXG right and let the life drain begin! They only have to pay it once per turn to field any number of dice, but you basically know that they are going to lose 2 life per turn. It's awesome. So much fun to play with, and your opponent will not expect it and will eventually have to play around it.

    Lex Luthor: Billionaire Industrialist

    Just like Joker and Loki, Lex Luthor locks down an entire card. But instead of saying it can't be fielded, Lex says that you can't purchase the die. This is extremely useful to use on the character that you know your opponent is building up steam to buy to be their WinCon. It won't get out in time to stop a 1-4 cost character, but it may stop them from getting multiple copies of them (elf thief anyone.....). Paired with the right partner in crime - get it this card can really disrupt your opponents ability to win the game.

    Honorable Mentions

    -Umber Hulk Lesser Beast
    -Umber Hulk - Greater Beast

    Well, that's all I have the energy to write about this week! I have to get back to writing drill for some high school marching bands! Hope everyone has a great weekend and I look forward to your comments, critiques and additions!


    Comments 4 Comments
    1. Jauron's Avatar
      Jauron -
      Good read. Almost makes me want to play a control deck!
    1. TheConductr's Avatar
      TheConductr -
      Quote Originally Posted by Jauron View Post
      Good read. Almost makes me want to play a control deck!
      They are so much fun! You should give it a try!
    1. pwaa's Avatar
      pwaa -
      Professor X is great, but what about the SR Obelisk from Yu Gi Oh? "While this monster is active, your opponent must pay 1 life to summon a monster."
      I assume that means every time your opponent wants to field anything, they have to pay a life (Unless I'm misinterpreting the card at all, which is possible). Admittedly, It does cost 8...
    1. TheConductr's Avatar
      TheConductr -
      Quote Originally Posted by pwaa View Post
      Professor X is great, but what about the SR Obelisk from Yu Gi Oh? "While this monster is active, your opponent must pay 1 life to summon a monster."
      I assume that means every time your opponent wants to field anything, they have to pay a life (Unless I'm misinterpreting the card at all, which is possible). Admittedly, It does cost 8...
      Obelisk is good, but I left it off because it is extremely cost prohibitive. If I have to get an 8 cost, it needs to win me the game, like now lol. Similar to the 8 cost Thanos that's unblockable. But yes, he is definitely another card that fits the archetype!