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In with the New | Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles

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Here just in time to arrive after the main TRP review, I'm going to be giving you my numbers for the TMNT box set and letting you know whether you should bother or not. This is the first complete box set that WizKids has released, so we're going to have a much shorter review since there's no drafting to be done. Additionally, there's a smaller cast of characters, so the normal alphabetical sorting doesn't quite fit. Instead, I'll be sorting by 3 groups: Non-Turtles, Turtles, and Villains, with all relevant pairs done one after another. Remember, this is all going to be first impressions as the set's not yet a week old, so some of these ratings will be subject to change.
All cards will be introduced by name. If you'd like to follow along with a refresher as to their stats and effects, you can check The Reserve Pool Wiki or follow the list I used to compile this list on http://dm.retrobox.eu/.

WARNING: All scores are purely the impression of the cool guy writing this blog and do not necessarily reflect the views of the community. Some scores are going to be highly controversial, so keep in mind, I'm the guy who thinks PXG and Polymorph are poor includes on the majority of teams.

Before I begin, I'll be rating dice strictly for the unlimited format with the array of support and gimmick potential factoring into the scores.

All scores will be given on a scale of 0 to 10 with 0 representing Vixen's common and 10 being Bard-tier. Without further ado, let's begin:





Basic Action

Cowabunga - 6 | Here's a new one, a BAC with an adaptive effect. That sure is something, and I think it has a few applications that aren't really covered in the current meta and offers a lot of potential. Immediately it jumps out as a card ripe for abuse with Wolverine - The Best there Is, but its effect also allows you to transition out of a single die rush once you've got one solid swing off. Currently, there are very few dice that allow you to change your strategy after you've bought them, but this kind of diversity might be worth it since it gives you the option to then transition into a different setup once your alpha-strike has gone through. (also, note the abusability with Beholder and End of Days).



Enraged - 6 | I've always had a soft spot in my heart for Thrown Car and now we see it again. I love the idea of giving multiple dice Overcrush since it gets around spot removal and forces my opponent to save multiple resources to counter a single die rather than the 1-for-1 that cards like Anger Issues provide. Also, while Mera seems to have been forgotten judging by the WKO, I still worry that she's sharking around to spoil your match-up, so dedicating to a single character is a big over commitment in comparison to having two characters to rest your game on.



Give Me a Break! - 3 | Give me a break... This ability used to be a global... Now it's a full on action die with a 3-cost purchase and limited functionality? This is just sad to see... No one will run this as there are many different ways to stop a character from blocking that also provide more benefits or are more permanent like KO's or captures. That said, it does a decent job of providing value for energy when used with a big Overcrusher, so it's not worthless.



Heroes in a Half Shell - 2.5 | Why not True Believer? The extra defense on Turtles is largely irrelevant and there is no utility to back this up. Sure it could see play in a hyper Action abuse build, but with dice like Hulk Out providing 1 less stat in exchange for Overcrush, there's simple a better choice for every application of this kind of effect.



Lethal Blow - 1.5 | Reprint of Finger of Death. Now that we've got that out of the way, single die removal for 5 energy? Not my gig. Then again, it is always interesting when we're provided with removal that does not KO and can even send dice outside of the reach of even such venerable fielding options as Polymorph irregardless of the horrible inconsistency.



Pizza! - 4 | The effect? Bad. The global? Bad (hard to do). The cost? Now we're talking! I don't care what you are or what you do, if you cost 1, chances are there's a use for you somewhere in Dice Masters. Heck, I'd buy a sidekick-tier character for 1 if only to get better diversity out of Bard. The actual application of this action is likely going to be limited to Action synergies (mostly limited to Batman), but it simply cannot be ignored as it's the only 1-cost die in the game that can be bought with generic energy.



Reckless Abandon - 2 | And here we are reprinting another BAC and even copying the name with Reckless Melee. Reckless Melee is basically an expensive and inconsistent version of Stinking Cloud or a double-edged, inconsistent, and utility lacking version of Cloudkill. No matter what you're doing, you should be picking the right tool for the job and Reckless Abandon is not that tool. Admittedly, there's something to be said for a jack-of-all-trades BAC, but for that you'd need consistency like Force Beam rather than sometimes hitting characters, sometimes hitting players and sometimes both.



Special Delivery - 3.5 | Dice acceleration is usable, however this is a reprint of Gearing Up that already sees no play for being too slow and has already been power creeped by Superhero Registration Act. Plain and simple, buying a die to roll a die to sometimes buy dice and sometimes roll dice is not worth 4 energy, especially when you're giving up the reroll that can save you from the wrong face at the wrong time. Prepping is just an inherently more useful mechanic and so Special Delivery falls flat.



Tactical Cover - 7.5 | A last BAC reprint for the set and it's one of the most underutilized BAC's ever, Take Cover. This requires some setup to be usable but then comes into its own. All you need is the support of a stat-swap global like Ant-Man or Kal-L and you're set to get massive stat buffs for a bargain price. One roll and you've given all your board +2D with one character getting +5D, meaning they're all much more likely to survive combat and any unblocked characters can swap their stats in for massive damage. This works best with Angel - Soaring who already has good defenses to swap and gets you through for damage, but can use Nitro - Stamford Incident if you don't want to shell out for an AvX rare.



Turtle Van - 8 | Bye-Bye Overcrush. In the past, it's been difficult to build against Overcrush while not providing your opponent the tools to foil your own combat damage setups like Bard or unblockable characters. However, Turtle Van provides the direct answer in a neat little 2-cost package. Specifically, it gets around Prismatic Spray by being a BAC and not a character ability and it doesn't mess with characters that haven't been blocked, making it a very directly anti-Overcrush tech and earning it a very solid rating. Overcrush may not be the strongest mechanic right now, but whenever I see a direct and utter counter like this, I can't pretend it isn't good (especially since I'm seeing a resurgence of Overcrush as an answer to Bard).





Characters

April 1 - 6 | Allies always have utility for the fact that there are so many abilities that interact with and buff sidekicks and April does it better than most by having no fielding cost and providing a buff of her own. With a stat swapping global, she could become a real monster for nearly no investment and she can soak damage or weather AoE with the best of them. On the other hand, doesn't have much impact on the board or lasting benefit, so I don't suspect she'll make it onto most teams unless they really want the cheapest 2-shield body they can find.

April 2 - 5.5 | The stats are still a major selling point and due to the fact that she works best with stat swapping globals, the case could be made that she's actually stronger than the previous April, providing a higher damage potential. I can see the reasoning there, but I think it's best to build for the lower investment option of just buffing a random sidekick or taking the utility of giving a swapped April 5/2 instead of 6/1 to better withstand light AoE.

April 3 - 4 | Not unusable, but the cost increase hurts a lot and she suffers the same problem as Gearing Up in that she just hands you a die without a reroll. Since she fields for free and puts a body on board, I won't complain about dice inefficiency, but we have to stop condoning this kind of behaviour. The fact that it's limited to sidekicks or Turtles as well only makes it that much worse. I would have considered this a superior alternative to Zatanna if it was prepping and non-exclusive, but as it is I don't think I'll find too many teams I want to build this April into. (also, the wording is terrible since drawing a die used to imply rolling it and adding it to the reserve unless otherwise specified, so this messes with a lot of wordings and creates confusion)



Casey Jones 1 - 1.5 | In a specific circumstance, if you're attacking, and your opponent decides to let it happen, Casey Jones gives you 1 lifegain... That's really bad. On top of that, his stats aren't what I like to see given that fielding cost on the level 3 face. It just seems that every 2-cost fist character is waging a war against the titans of sets gone by with Tsarina and Guy Gardner always watching, waiting to smack them down and Casey Jones is not going to be the one to make the difference.

Casey Jones 2 - 9 | You remember how Relentless and Swords of Revealing Light were just banned? Forget about that. Now we get the same sort of effect for every Villain-maker global on the books. Spider-Man - Webslinger has a new apprentice and he does his job far too well. Bard's going to abuse this. Fist Lantern Ring teams will abuse this. Guy Gardner rush can abuse this. This can be abused! Now it's our job to do the abusing. (Also, I don't want to give you any ideas, but just think about this alongside Villinous Pact...)

Casey Jones 3 - 3 | Unblockable damage is nice enough, but this feels like such a let-down after the middle Casey. The cost has gone up, the rampant abusability factor has gone down and now it's just a sneaky die that can squeeze in some damage or help force your opponent to block in an unfavorable way, not exactly the top-tier... No, it seems there's only going to be one Casey in competitive play, but that may be okay so long as he gets abused properly.



Splinter 1 - 4 | The stats are middling and the effect is nice, but there are many more characters out there that do this kind of buffing better *cough* Bard *cough*. Nothing in this character jumps out as terrible, but neither am I given anything to really work with and that's a crying shame. One of my all-time favorite cards, Black Luster Soldier, looks surprisingly surprisingly similar to this and that makes me sad to think he's been power creeped so hard that his look-alike doesn't even hit an average score. Regardless, on a fist/bolt team, this has some potential if you're not into the Bard nonsense or if you're worried about OP Scarecrow stopping your pushes.

Splinter 2 - 1 | Massive costs for the smallest of targeted removal. I don't know of a single world in which I seriously consider this over literally any AvX Hulk. Yes, even the one that just fields more Hulks.

Splinter 3 - 0.5 | Let me get this straight... For mediocre stats and a 7-cost asking price, I get a when fielded ability that stops a single opposing character from blocking some of my dice until the end of the turn. This would be complete and utter trash if Warth - Hope Burns Bright wasn't a fist character. Since he is, there is a legitimate gimmick that can be done if you're working with a limited roster of characters to choose from and so I can't quite slap on the Vixen rating...



Splinter 4 - 4.5 | Worse stats may be one thing, but the massive push potential this Splinter provides to a Turtle Power team is quite another. +2/+2 is nothing to be scoffed at and it can make a team of Turtles explode with aggression that will be hard to handle, even though it takes a while to setup. I don't like the fact that he only has applications in Turtle gimmicks, but sometimes knowing your niche allows you to do that one thing better than just about anybody else (except Bard) and that's worthwhile.

Splinter 5 - 1 | Half of Gearing Up on a pretty bad body with very low odds of success? I'm going to have to take a pass. For the same price I could be buying myself a Jinzo and that's just an overall better value proposition for me to be taking with much better odds of paying off in the long and short run.

Splinter 6 - 3.5 | There we go, now Splinter has something that nobody else can do. He can give up to 12 of your active character dice Overcrush (and stop a single character die from blocking half of them). He may be expensive, but that's the kind of explosive end-game power that can make a 7-cost worth it. It does rely on you having an active set of Turtles, but with Turtle Power making them cheaper, it's not impossible to do by the late-mid game and that makes Splinter somewhat usable.



Donatello 1 - 3 | All the Turtles have hidden power in the fact that the other Turtles can be used to give you a price reduction of up to 3 energy off their listed price, so you should never look at their printed price as final. That said, this looks an awful lot like a vanilla version of Kang and while I love Kang, it's for the utility he provides on top of his statline, not just the raw stats.

Donatello 2 - 4 | Speaking of that hidden power, it's Turtle Power and gives you a reason to build the Turtles as a faction rather than splashing them. The problem with this idea, however, is that you need to have at least 2 of the price reducing sort to break even and at that point, you're heavily invested in the gimmick. Its lack of splashability makes for a very hard sell in a meta that begs and borrows from a dozen sets and is growing constantly. If you want to go down the Turtle route, it's best to go big or go home (and chances are you should just go home).

Donatello 3 - 7.5 | This is the Turtle big-boss. He is going to make your other Turtles into combat ready fighting machines and if they're already prepared, give you a bit of acceleration on the side. Having this sort of guaranteed level 3 face allows for a lot of gimmick plays that you couldn't otherwise make such as using Stinking Cloud without fear. That is, of course, in addition to getting big burly level 3 stats for cheap and being able to bash with those as per normal. I'd use this with Splinter 6 and enjoy stomping my opponent to death with a mass of beaters.



Leonardo 1 - 3.5 | The most defensive of the turtles, but also the easiest to field, I'm trying to figure out why I'd run him over Drax outside of just massing Turtles for a Splinter play. Come to think of it, it does open me up to include a stat swap global for at the very least decent value and doing so also helps the Turtle Splinter use his defensive stats effectively as well. Me being the sucker for gimmicks and fielding costs that I am, I have to give Leonardo his due for his potential and rate him the above Donatello.

Leonardo 2 - 2.5 | Turtle Power is back with more price reduc-- What? This one doesn't reduce the cost of the other Turtles? Then why's it called Turtle Power? Irregardless, the low fielding cost and additional effect when you get use out of it make Leonardo the ideal candidate for an ability like this. Normally I'd leave it there and move on, but this ability has a literally fatal flaw: it's mandatory. So now your opponent never has to deal with Leonardo's massive defenses, but instead can just use their ping removal on smaller turtles and get kick Leo right out. That does force your opponent to give you lifegain, but that's not worth enough to make this useful, especially when you can't control when it procs. This is an anti-synergy.

Leonardo 3 - 3 | The most expensive of the cost reducers, he's also missing the Turtle Power keyword. I don't know why WizKids had to go and mess with the formula, but c'est la vie. Being a 6-cost purchase is generally a terrible idea if you want to be reducing the price of your other purchases, but for a setup like this, that basically means that you just buy him last after you have the other Turtle Powers online. At that point it makes him useful for a pure Turtle Power setup, but significantly worse if you're only splashing in a pair of them in order to make use of other Turtle synergies like the final Donatello. Because of this, I can't rate him well and that leaves Leonardo in a bad spot overall.



Michelangelo 1 - 5 | For a vanilla Turtle, Michelangelo has the most appealing stats and that can go a long way. With sufficient bonuses, you could turn Michelangelo into a really fearsome fighter. All it takes is 3 supporting turtles and you have guaranteed level 3 Michelangelo's for a 2-cost asking price and you're pretty much set. That said, being the benefactor of support is a lot lower rating than providing quality support so I won't get too far ahead of myself.

Michelangelo 2 - 4.5 | Donatello+ is effectively how I think about Michelangelo. They have the same costs with Michelangelo just being better at offense than Donatello and thus making him the superior option. Having Turtle Power means that he support his fellow Turtles more, but because of his stats, he actually makes a better candidate for the central Turtle and unless you are going 4x cost reduction, consider going for vanilla Mikey.

Michelangelo 3 - 4 | Now hear me out. This ability is incredible in a Turtle spam team and makes the big Splinter a MASSIVE value. However, the odds of you making that many big purchases and still being in the game is so negligible that I can't rightly consider it when rating this character. Yes it is a devastating combo, but when your combo requires 3 or more 6+ purchases, it's probably too slow to be played in any sort of competitive environment. Still... consider this an option with the final Donatello and an Overcrush provider like MJ, Hulk Out, or Thrown Car for major potential.



Raphael 1 - 4 | I'd accuse this of being Spider-bad if Turtle Power didn't exist, but it does, so I have to be fair about this. I love the 4-cost 3/4/5 statline and I can forgive being a vanilla bolt Namor since there's affiliation synergy and price reductions about. Simply put: it's usable, but not great so don't get your hopes up about this being the answer to your Turtly prayers.

Raphael 2 - 5 | Strictly better than the vanilla outside of Wonder Ring matchups, I have to admit I like the potential here. Being a "when attacking" global makes this decent since it procs before blockers are declared and can help clear the way for your Turtles. It relies on the team setup, but probably has the most reasonable setup given his costs and payoff. Also, whenever I see a bolt character that does multiple pings of damage, I immediately think of how I can abuse this with Cyclops - Field Leader and Raphael shows some promise.

Raphael 3 - 4.5 | This goes a long way towards showing the problem that the Turtles have as a faction: there is no good "dump Turtle" to foist Turtle Power onto. The only Turtle that doesn't powerfully help the team with their second effect is Leonardo and his cost reducing version costs 6 as opposed to the others' 5. This means that you're stuck making inefficient use of the Turtles no matter which combination of their cost reductions and utility effects you cobble together and that really sucks. It's an interesting idea to demand 4 of your slots in order to use a faction effectively, but when that faction is built with anti-synergy in its makeup, I can't really bring myself to recommend them... (shoutout to Taskmaster for the weird Turtle Power Synergy)



Baxter Stockman 1 - 7.5 | Right as I start complaining, they give me this beautiful villainous body! Now for those who haven't caught from my previous set reviews, I'm a sucker for quality statlines, low fielding costs, and useful affiliations to build with and Stockman provides everything I need. Seriously, look back at other 4-cost villain options. When the competition is AoU Baron Zemo and Bucky, it's easy to look good. Additionally, his effect can be very powerful when you know it's coming since you can immediately buy a Mouser (who's another value villain we'll talk about later). Altogether we have a rush-down villain with stats that I can't get enough of, so that's good marks from me.

Baxter Stockman 2 - 5.5 | Adding to the price of any 4-cost character hurts a ton since it's the difference between a turn 1 purchase and not. Also, losing out on the "when fielded" ability that meshes so well with the Mousers character and his impeccable fielding cost seems backwards, but nevertheless, this is at least a decent Baxter. Not only does he mute the fielding cost of his gadgets (literally the only reasonable complaint against Mousers), but he also boosts their attack by +2 just by standing by to watch. This is a big deal for the aggro playstyle that Mousers are built for, but the added cost means you'll likely be building one of the effect Mousers instead of the stat Mouser which in turn means that you're shifting your team into a mid-game punchy setup instead of a speedy rush down build. The long haul isn't the best bet in the current meta, so we end at a fairly big hit to Stockman's score.

Baxter Stockman 3 - 8 | Being a 5-cost still hurts, but this is some pretty fantastic value when applied correctly. Instead of actually supporting an aggro Baxter/Mouser playstyle, this is instead cut out for a Villain Retaliation team. Not only do you have great fielding costs on top of a "when fielded" effect, but he also brings along his friend to the party immediately for even more villainous bodies standing around to help the burn. Altogether this adds up to a very decent purchase, especially when paired with the KO mouser who starts the party without needing to pay for a global or bring along a Golem to get clogged with. This is a very fun combo.



Mousers 1 - 7.5 | Were this worded as "target opposing character," it would be my go-to example of an anti-synergy. As it stands, it's actually a fantastic example of an ability that shouldn't be used against the opponent, but rather against yourself. Using any ability well usually boils down to controlling how it affects the board and Mousers lets you do that. So long as you're targeting one of your own characters, there's nothing your opponent can reasonably do to prevent that KO and avoid you sending that character to prep. This means you can use that same "when fielded" ability next turn and forms a beautiful combo with Baxter Stockman 3 that can tear your opponent apart when placed on a Villain Retaliation team. I really like this setup and would recommend it for anyone who doesn't have access to BEWD but still wants to make Black Manta shine.

Mousers 2 - 7 | With new blood like Miri Riam and Elf Thief sharking around in addition to the old-guard of Gobby and his ilk, Mousers has a very high chance of having his ability active. Taking that into account, he makes for a very impressive 2-cost Villain. 3+ attack on all faces and TFC-2 is very easy to swallow and when combined with some Baxter Stockman support, you could have an absolute beatstick for bargain bin prices and along with some blocker evasion like Villainous Pact, I can see this doing very will in a competitive scene.

Mousers 3 - 2.5 | Storm - Ro already does this for everyone and for cheaper. Admittedly, she doesn't do it on a Villain body, but that's a more than worthwhile trade-off for the massive bump in versatility that she offers in addition to the price reduction. A blind counter like this just doesn't really have a place in the modern meta-game, especially since there are other characters that do the same job better and once an attack has been declared, it's probably too late because you have to spend Mousers' block to get his removal.



Bebop 1 - 6.5 | Now where have I seen this ability before? Oh yeah, wrecking house in WoL drafts with Munk and Indigo-1. I liked it alright there, but now that it's strictly for unlimited play, I can't see it performing to quite the same degree. At the same time, however, it only made Munk and Indigo-1 decent stat'd; Bebop and Rocksteady become real monsters when they get their buffs and still don't need too much energy to make their purchases. If you can get decently lucky rolls, these two will remain quite cheap and make a fantastic pair. Bebop is specific works great with a stat-swap global for a +3 attack boost on most of his faces, leading to a very efficient stat-stick.

Bebop 2 - 1.5 | When fielded, if you have a supporting character, deal 1 damage, for a 5-cost purchase... Absolutely not! There's any number of cheaper ways to deal a single point of burn and while Bebop still works for enabling Rocksteady's team synergy, he comes in way overpriced and under stat'd for an effect that's this weak.

Bebop 3 - 1 | Now we're getting some utility for our ever-increasing price. Not good utility, but utility nonetheless. For a whopping 6-cost asking price, you're getting a guaranteed character face... That's it. Those of you who were sticking around to hear what else he does can go home disappointed since there's no real use for a massively over-cost character that provides nothing while active and only helps get themself in the field. Sure, you can do some tricks like making sure he gets re-fielded every time you KO him on a Villain Retaliation team, but it's times like this that you really should focus on quantity over quality since the cost is just too much to stomach.



Rocksteady 1 - 7.5 | Now where have I seen this ability before? Oh yeah, on Bebop. Now we've got the same costs to deal with, but a significantly stronger statline with an average of +2A on every face. Any 4-cost character with an easy to accomplish 8 attack is pretty decent in my opinion and if you can make your purchases quickly enough, you can do some real damage by just hammering him home.

Rocksteady 2 - 7 | Big stats are nice, but free Overcrush is even better. Combine with Bard, any guaranteed Overcrusher makes for truly sickening damage after the proper setup and you have a great way to use Bard outside of the simple rush tactics. It's hard to get a big force of Overcrushers going, but Bebop and Rocksteady combine to make that dream a reality and have real synergy with any sort of buff effect, even non-bard ones like the old OP BAC Teamwork.

Rocksteady 3 - 5 | Eh, the increased purchase cost hurt and the effect is only okay. It's very nice if you're using a Wonder Girl/Polymorph setup to spin down key opposing characters, but outside of that, it's just minor sidekick removal. Come to think of it, this reminds me of the real Rhino from ASM, but not quite as trash since he enables Bebop plays in addition to his minor removal effect so he at least gets decent marks. Can I just say the Villains in this set have been really impressive so far.



Foot Ninja 1 - 8.5 | Finally, Swarm has been brought to all 4 energy types and all is right with the world. Not only that, but bolts now have access to another cheap character for the bolt Lantern Ring setup. It may not be the absolute best choice given its low defense being vulnerable to main step Magic Missiles, but having the Swarm potential can pay off if you Miri it in and have multiples ready to be drawn for a powerful push the next turn. The biggest issue we see here is the max: 3 that plagues this set. It hasn't come up as a problem for the other characters, but for Foot Ninja 1, it could be a significant hurdle that stops them from being used competitive due to the nature of Swarm.

Foot Ninja 2 - 10 | Is this Bard? No. Does it beat Bard? Yes. All it takes is some Overcrush and we finally have a Bard-killer. Not only does this count as a sidekick for the purposes of your abilities, but it also gets +1/+1 for each and every other sidekick die in the entire field (both yours and your opponents). Simply put, this is going to be a 7/7 or greater every single game its played and if you can get it going before an opposing Bard push, you can make use of each and every sidekick they were storing up as stats to boost your own push. Sidekicks have been and probably always will be one of the fastest enablers for win-conditions since you start with 8 of them and Foot Ninja 2 uses them incredibly well. If you can toss a Thrown Car or Horn of the Unicorn onto a pair of these bad boys, your opponent can say GG unless they manage to Distract them or brought the Mera global and you don't have the counters to those on board yet. My only quibble is that since it's a Villain, it doesn't get the natural MJ synergy.

Foot Ninja 3 - 2 | How do you follow a legitimate 10? Foot Ninja 3 couldn't figure it out and I don't blame them. They boost the defensive threat of your sidekicks and nothing else... *sigh* Even common Green Goblin does this better and for the same price. It's okay Foot Ninja 3, you never had a chance of being used anyway, we forgive you.



Shredder 1 - 5 | Parallax's statline just got power creeped and I love it. anything that offers me 8/8 on TFC-4 is A-Okay in my book and while the 6-cost makes him untenable as a regular beater, his effect is usable. He sets the game on a clock where every turn, each player is going to lose a life. This means you and your opponent are going to be under pressure to make the gem end as fast as you can since every turn brings you closer to lethal. This gets bonus points since it's losing life and you don't have to worry about triggering damage abilities like Hulk or worrying about redirects like Golems foiling your plan. Additionally, since you know this is coming, you can build with some lifegain to make sure you win in the case of a stalemate. Overall, he provides a way to make sure the game ends eventually and some very nice stats to accompany that effect.

Shredder 2 - 0.5 | A vanilla 7-cost beater is not good. He does have Villain synergies to consider and can be a decent choice if you are new to the game, but the chances of blindly running into a Turtle team is basically zilch and since they can't really splash into anything, this should really be left for the very new and for playing with just the characters from the box.

Shredder 3 - 1.5 | The cost is exorbitant, but it can be done if you use something like Limited Wish or Green Lantern Mogo. The problem is, both of these strategies don't mesh with Shredder's effect since he requires heavy Villain investment. Even though it's a massive tempo swing to play this down, allowing you to roll basically every villain you have that isn't on the field, the cost is too much to swallow, especially since it's not incredibly reliable based on when you actually roll him onto the field.



Fugitoid 1 - 2.5 | A vanilla Black Manta in reverse is not enough to be good. I'd prefer a villain that cost less to field and gave me a more useful effect like, I don't know, Gobby? The 3-cost Villain slot has more competition than you can shake a stick at and having offensive rather than defensive stats is not enough to compete for a slot that's basically reserved for 9+ rated characters.

Fugitoid 2 - 1 | Unlike with studies, counters are really bad when they're double-blind. Even if you do stumble into one of your blind counters, this ability is still incredibly weak and only provides a single energy tax to the opponent when they're already moving to swing. Outside of minor inconvenience and partial life savings against Lantern Ring teams, this just doesn't do enough to warrant the cost.

Fugitoid 3 - 0.5 | Okay, instead of being inconvenient and slightly hurting a single meta build, he now has no real utility and probably hurts you more than he helps since he can't be built into a Villain build without actively damaging your walling potential. Fugitoid is basically the Wobbuffet of Dice Masters, constantly getting in the way and best left out if you want to be effective.



Krang 1 - 6.5 | Outside of the obvious synergy with Villainous Pact, Krang also proves to be the perfect mentor for Nitro - Stamford incident. Every time you sneak him through for damage with your stat-swapping global, you're also getting a 50% chance to prep him for another go round the very next turn. Combined with a defense buff like the uncommon CW Vibranium Shield, you can get very powerful swings through quite often. Also, Krang himself has the perfect body to take advantage of stat-swapping globals and can be a major sucker punch to anyone who isn't expecting him or can't muster enough blocks to deal with his pressure.

Krang 2 - 4 | Krang loses all synergies he previously enabled, but now makes for the perfect punching machine with a stat-swapping global. Not only doe he sport a 7/8/9 attack line when swapped, but even with his reduced defenses, he's liable to stay on the field due to his Regenerate. Pair with Overcrush to get some real work done and make sure your opponent is left with a crippled field or a crippled face.

Krang 3 - 5 | The anti-PXG is here and it only took 10 sets! It also costs a massive amount and has no other real utility... I'm not sure whether I should have a small celebration or just facepalm, so I'm going to stick him right in the middle. Yes, he really messes up your opponent's day in a PXG game, but he costs 7 energy and that's a mighty big asking price for a single-minded "when fielded" ability. Don't get me wrong, he's not bad, but he's not terribly good either so I'm going to close out with an average rating.





That's all there is for the TMNT set review. I'm always interested in second opinions on my ratings and ideas for how to use characters that I hadn't considered, so join in the comments below to get your voices heard. Any and all feedback is welcome and if you have an issue with my list, remember, it's not written in stone, but I do think it's important for the community to have a general idea of scale when looking into how characters break down and I enjoy filling that niche.

Thank you all for following along, and as always, have a nice day!

Updated 09-01-2016 at 04:32 AM by Necromanticer

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  1. pk2317's Avatar
    Once again, a very solid review!

    I think it may have been nice to see, instead of a draft rating, an in-set rating (since many people may be playing this completely by itself). That will definitely affect ratings, since many blind counters are less blind now. But that's a minor quibble

    Also I think you may have misread Bebop/Rocksteady. All their effects only affect themselves, but rely on the other to be present. So it's Bebop that has a guaranteed character face.
  2. Necromanticer's Avatar
    Quote Originally Posted by pk2317
    Once again, a very solid review!

    I think it may have been nice to see, instead of a draft rating, an in-set rating (since many people may be playing this completely by itself). That will definitely affect ratings, since many blind counters are less blind now. But that's a minor quibble

    Also I think you may have misread Bebop/Rocksteady. All their effects only affect themselves, but rely on the other to be present. So it's Bebop that has a guaranteed character face.
    Bebop's 6-cost is a lot more disappointing now that you point that out, but it's good to have accurate information in an review like this.

    I had considered making an in-set review, but nothing I could do along those lines really works for what I'm doing. My idea behind these set reviews are to give people a rough idea of how they should be looking at these cards in a competitive setting to help guide what they should be trying to get ahold of and what to ignore. Whether that's drafts or constructed, it's nice to have an idea of how a specific character can be used and what they lend themselves towards so you can better guide your purchases and draft pickups. To make a review like that for a box-set like this is pretty useless. There's only 16 characters and everyone already has perfect knowledge of what they do, so it's easy to judge whether you want to buy-in or not.

    Beyond that, I don't think this makes for a very good set for 2-players. You can't run villains vs. heroes because of the double Splinter. Someone get's stuck with a vanilla Fugitoid unless they want to build against themself, the Turtles are significantly weaker than the villains, and there are some stand-out OP's like the Foot Ninja and the combo's with Baxter/Mousers or Bebop/Rocksteady. No matter how you slice it, this is a good set, but not for in-set play and it just doesn't fit with what this review format is looking to do.
  3. Anchorman70's Avatar
    Outstanding analysis. I'm excited to play with these characters.

    Foot Soldiers look amazing. 2 different versions that could shake up the meta.
  4. Jwannabe's Avatar
    Thanks again for putting the effort into this.
  5. The0retico's Avatar
    Thank you for sharing your views!

    As mentioned above, Rocksteady isn't that good.
    Foot Ninja 2 looks useful, but still much worse than Guy Gardner, but I can imagine how it might revive sidekick teams, just the ranking seems a bit too high.
    Casey Jones 2 seems like a 10 - better version of Giant Spider (which was great) and it emulates Relentless very well. What I really like is the design - it is very powerful, yet quite fair, because you can counter it.
  6. Necromanticer's Avatar
    Quote Originally Posted by The0retico
    Thank you for sharing your views!

    As mentioned above, Rocksteady isn't that good.
    Foot Ninja 2 looks useful, but still much worse than Guy Gardner, but I can imagine how it might revive sidekick teams, just the ranking seems a bit too high.
    Casey Jones 2 seems like a 10 - better version of Giant Spider (which was great) and it emulates Relentless very well. What I really like is the design - it is very powerful, yet quite fair, because you can counter it.
    I'm always happy to let people know what they should bee keeping an eye out for and why ^^

    It was Bebop that I had misread, I had though that his 6-cost allowed you to reroll Rocksteady, which would have been fantastic for his Overcrush version since you'd be guaranteed to have him swinging in permanently. Since that clearly isn't the case, I had to drop Bebop's score a lot. Rocksteady on the other hand has massive aggro stats as long as Bebop is there to hold his hand and that makes him really good, something like I'd imagine a grown up Hill Giant would be.
    Foot 2 is bonkers and significantly stronger than Guy Gardner. Yes, he costs 1 more, but he gets massively more stats, defenses in addition to offenses, is not required to attack every turn, and can fit into any sort of sidekick setup. I can't imagine how Guy Gardner can top that outside of being Miri-able, and that's only important for rush-down which Bard already does better.
    Casey Jones is good, but he's very easy to remove before he gets his swing off and faces some of the same counters that are already being brought to bear against Bard. He is incredible value, I don't deny, but he's only slightly better than Giant Spider who is only about an 8 at best.

    That's the more in-depth reasoning here, and I hope you can see how I came to the conclusions I did. That said, there's always multiple ways to look at characters, and these are just my perspective, so don't take them too seriously.
    If anything, I'd love to see more people making their own lists of the new sets and running down who and how they're looking forward to playing in whatever broken setup they can concoct.