• Local Event, 7-9 Constructed

    Another week, another Dice Masters event. This is our last constructed event before Age of Ultron drops and we start drafting for the next few weeks. For the third constructed event in a row, I rolled out a completely different team. The first one was Fireball, the second was Doom’s Day Device, and this event saw me bring the popular Johnny Swarm combo, with an Amazing twist. Oh yea, @jthomash2 was there too. Enough of the intro, on to the tandem review! JT's comments are in RED.

    I enjoyed reading Randy's write up of last week's event and I'm still kind of bummed that I had to miss out due to some unexpected travel. In any case, it's super encouraging to know they had 8 last week, and there's some continued growth in the scene.

    Here’s my team. http://dm.retrobox.eu/?view&cards=4x...x25jl;3x137bff

    Here’s a super quick breakdown and strategy of my team.
    Kobold – Swarm. Plus, it can hold equipment. More on that later.
    Constantine – He’s great at nullifying threats. Great early buy.
    Human Torch – Can deal tons of damage. Especially when you consider all the Kobolds I’ll have.
    Human Paladin – A global that can shut down Gobby and an ability great for facing a global-reliant team.
    Spider-Man – The star of the show, really. Great ability, good TFC for stats.
    Magic Sword – My removal. Can be held by Kobolds, and I have plenty of those.
    Phoenix – Just for global. Force opposing characters to run in to my removal.
    Red Dragon – Global. Easier purchasing of my Sword. Can purchase Anger Issues for cheaper if needed.
    Resurrection – It’s all about that global.
    Anger Issues – Mostly for the global since Kobolds will give me tons of fists. Can purchase if needed.

    So, there were two significant things about my drive to the shop. First, I drove right past my exit. I was on the phone with a college friend I haven’t talked to in a while, and drove right past the exit, making me late to the event. JT paid my way in to the event when he arrived, and we had 7 people total. So, since we had an odd number of people and I was late, I got the first round bye. I felt bad at first, but after I saw how we were doing scoring (3 points for a win, 2 points for a bye, 1 point for a loss) I saw that a bye wasn’t a “free win” as it was in some other events at other stores. The second significant thing about my drive, was that I heard Roll On by The Living End come on the radio. (The song is at the bottom of this article.) One of my all-time favorite bands. A three-piece punk band from Australia and the bassist plays an upright bass. Longtime readers may know that I used to link to this song at the end of my articles, and it’s still the reason why I close my articles with, “roll on.” Awesome band, awesome song. My Dice Masters theme song, if you will. I told my college friend (that inadvertently made me late) that this song coming on the radio meant I was going to win. No doubt in my mind.

    This week, I wanted to try Formerly Weapon Ten on for size. And not wanting to bring Relentless, I decided to sub in Anger Issues. But rather than let Wolverine go to my used pile (ever) I also brought this guy: Rare Summoned Skull. This global is something else. Save a bolt, and an unblocked character goes to your bag, not your used pile. Is combining it with Overcrush redundant? Maybe, but I wanted to see how it played. Turn one, Red Dragon Global for Polymorph and PXG twice. Turn two, get Anger Issues any way possible and PXG three times. Turn three, poly in FWX, apply Anger Issues, and swing. That was my plan. Here's how it went:

    Round one I played Tim. Tim brings pressure with Johnny Storm. And then he swings with him to boot. Tim hit me for 10 damage on turn 3. I got a big strike in right back, but it was a challenge to get Anger Issues to come up action face, so getting a second strike in was very challenging. We whittled each other away until finally I got Anger Issues to come up. And a sidekick. I ended up pumping the Sidekick with Overcrush and fists to swing for the win when I had a challenge getting another character face to come up. Tim pushed me to 2 life, but I got the win.

    Like I said, I got there late. The other three first round matches were still going on. Soon it was time for round two.

    I played Rob. Rob is still tinkering and tweaking his Green Goliath team that he’s been using since the first time we played. I went first, and both of us started off pretty well. I avoided my Human Torch, and after purchasing Kobolds and Constantine, went right after Spider-Man. He got lvl 3 Hulk out, and I had lvl 3 Spider-Man. For about three turns in a row, I would field Spider-Man. Pass priority. He would ping his Hulk twice, dealing four damage to everything of mine. Spidey was barely alive. So I’d attack while paying to cut his life in half. I think the first time I did it he had 18. So he was down to nine. Then on his turn he didn’t have enough to do lethal, and wanted to keep his Hulk in the field. He’d make a few purchases, keep up his ramp, and save energy for my turn. I’d roll everything he KO’d with Hulk the turn before, and fielded lvl 3 Spider-Man again, along with multiple Constantines and Kobolds. Pass priority. Rob could only trigger his Hulk twice, leaving Spidey alive. Thanks to all of my Kobolds that rolled energy, I had plenty of energy. So, I’d pay for his ability, cutting Rob’s life in half again. Eventually, I was able to force a couple of Rob’s characters to attack me, including Hulk, and let him through for non-lethal damage. The next turn I just rushed with sidekicks, Kobolds, Constantines, and Spider-Man for the win. The team worked great, even without being able to use Johnny Storm. On to round three, and my second match.

    Round two was Tony, a regular who I've not crossed paths with before. Tony's core was common Firestorm and Hawkeye, until he could ramp to Red Dragon. This one went perfect. I hit him for 13 on turn 3 and put Wolverine right back in my bag. Wolverine didn't come up, but Anger Issues did, and I pumped a sidekick. 2-0. After this match, Tony, Chris, and I had some really good conversation about the game and growing into the unlimited meta as new players. It was great to get their perspective on the game and some of the rulings and resources available. We talked strategy, community, and card design. I'm so encouraged by the enthusiasm I encountered. Let's face it, I text Randy ideas all week long. I read the forums daily. It's easy to see enthusiasm in that circle, but to find it in the wild was a real treat tonight.

    The next match was against this guy named Randy.

    What do you know, time to face JT. Honestly, we hadn’t played in a few weeks. And when we were playing for him to get ready for Worlds. I was just trying to run some of what we thought would be popular teams against him, so he could find the best buying options and strategy. But this is the first game in a while where we both brought a team we were excited to play with to the table. I went first, and both of us had some rolls we weren’t too happy about early. He didn’t have a way to make his Wolverine or Surfer unblockable, or make my characters unable to block. I knew from a game I watched him play in the first round, that he had some trouble with his opponent walling up. So I bought my Magic Sword early. The hope was to force him to attack before he was ready to trigger Overcrush, and have his attacker run right in to my Kobold with the Magic Sword. Entire game, Magic Sword came up energy. It never came up action. I had a choice to make early on. I could buy Spider-Man and still have an energy leftover with an empty bag to use Resurrection, guaranteeing to roll Spidey my next turn. Or I could purchase Human Torch, and maintain some solid ramp, thanks to his PXG. I opted for Spider-Man. JT had some awful luck. He bought Polymorph, Anger Issues, and had kept his ramp up enough to roll everything turn three. Anger Issues came up energy both times, but it didn’t matter, because Polymorph did as well. So instead of being able to Poly in an Overcrushing Wolverine, he had to just hard purchase two Wolverines (I think) and maintain ramp. It was a turn or two later that I got Spidey in, and over the course of two turns, I cut his life in half twice, and rushed for the win. What dealt the final blow was all of my extra fist energy, thanks to my Kobolds, that I was able to spend on the Anger Issues global, to pump up the attack of one of my sidekicks that got through. Then we played another game real quick since the other matches were still going on. JT went first, and he won. I went for Human Torch, rather than Spidey this time, and paid for it. Also, he did not get burned by unlucky rolls. We went 1-1, but I won the one that mattered. On to the final round!

    After getting my face melted by the Amazing Spider-Man in quick fashion, with all the other pairs still playing, Randy and I played another quick one. This time I went first. Another perfect first set of rolls and another big swing early. Randy went Johnny Storm first and while he eventually bought Spider-Man, it didn't matter much. He had built a wall, but I got Wolverine to swing with Overcrush with 20 attack. All the king's horses and all the king's men couldn't have stopped lethal.

    My last match was against Rob. You might remember Rob. He immediately put together how BEWD worked a few weeks ago and used it like a pro. This week he learned Polymorph in 2 seconds. After I bought it turn 1, he reread it and decided he wanted one too. I Poly’d in Wolverine, swung big, and put him right back in rotation. Then Anger Issues refused to come up again. With no way to make Wolverine unblocked or give him overcrush, he's just not as effective as direct damage. Rob eventually got Torch and Hulk and while I held him at bay for a little while, he took me down. Once again, for me, it's the Robs of the community that make it so amazing. Guys who are hungry to learn and love the game, and dive in to the stuff they haven't seen before and immediately know how it makes their teams more efficient.

    Two weeks ago I got third place. Last week I came in second. This time, I’m ready to take first. I mentioned the scoring up above. Going in to the final round I had 8 points, JT and Rob were tied with 7, and Chris (who I hadn’t had the honor of playing before this) had 6 points. My two wins were over the two players tied for second. Since I had already played them, my next opponent was Chris, while JT would face Rob. Even if Chris beat me, we would be tied at 9 points, and the winner between JT and Rob would have 10 points. So, going in to the final round, there were three potential winners. Unfortunately for everyone else, however, my team fired on all cylinders. I started with Kobolds and Constantine. I bought a Magic Sword. Then purchased both Human Torch and Spider-Man. Chris was using a villainous Retaliation team that had quite a few characters in common with the Villain team I ran last week. He had a pretty good force building up of his own. He had Punisher, two Cheetahs, Black Manta, and Katana in play. Punisher was just fielded this turn, but I had named Punisher with Constantine, so he couldn’t attack. I used my Phoenix global to force Black Manta to attack, and he also declared Katana to attack as well. Katana had a beefy attack stat, with all of the Villains in play. I think he even used the Iron Man global to turn Katana herself in to a Villain. I let Manta through unblocked and took the single point of damage, and blocked Katana with my Kobold equipped with a Magic Sword. (FINALLY I got to use my Magic Sword!) My next turn, I rolled a bunch of sidekicks, some Kobolds thanks to Swarm, and both Spider-Man and Human Torch. I fielded Torch, then a couple Kobolds and Spidey. It was enough that I could KO Punisher with the damage from Johnny Storm. I attacked with everyone, spending for that Amazing ability, and just had too many attacking for Chris to block. Victory. Victory!

    This was our last constructed play for a while. AOU limited is up next. The group has always done sealed, but I'm pretty sure we've got them talked into a draft for next week. Hopefully we'll have a reasonable turnout and Randy and I can share our experience and strategy based on what we see!

    This team worked better than I imagined. I ended up walking out with the UXM Age of Apocalypse prizes (Magneto, Beast, and Apocalypse) as my reward. It’s always nice to walk away the winner. But even more than that, we are really clicking as a play group. There were times in between rounds that we were all just standing around talking. And we realized no one had told the shop owner yet that we needed new pairings for the next round. I’m really glad to have found this local scene. This was the last constructed event for a while. Starting next week, we draft Age of Ultron. But don’t worry, we’ll keep up our coverage of the drafts as well. JT and I (and maybe a special guest or two) will continue these tandem reviews. And who knows, our local event coverage may become a multimedia extravaganze before too long. So, stay tuned. And as always… as The Living End said on the radio on my way to the event… Roll On

    Comments 2 Comments
    1. IsaacBV's Avatar
      IsaacBV -
      Great write up on your scene guys. Love me some Johnny Swarm, but I like how Spidey played out for you also. Thanks for the insight!
    1. Randy's Avatar
      Randy -
      Spidey worked so well. I attacked with him every game I played (except maybe the extra game with JT) and had the 3 extra fists fir his ability every time. Every. Time. I was never like, "wish I had some fists". Part of that was also planning. Sometimes I would force an opposing character to attack, and block with Kobolds, sending it to my prep, with a chance to get fists next turn.