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Confusing Card of the Week #55 - S.T.A.R. Labs: Advanced Research

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Greetings Fellow Dice Fans!

Today, we're going to take a look at S.T.A.R. Labs: Advanced Research from the DC Green Arrow and The Flash set. WizKids beat me to posting a ruling about this card today. I'm glad they did though, because now I have an official link for it!

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Ruling - Ability

The ability on S.T.A.R. Labs says that a target Bolt or Shield character die that you control deals its attack value in damage to another target character die. When you use this Action Die, you choose one of your Bolt or Shield character dice in the Field Zone. You then choose another target character, whether it's one of your opponent's or one of your own. Your character will deal damage equal to its attack to the other character. You can increase or decrease the attack value before using S.T.A.R. Labs so your character deals more or less damage than its printed value. See Example One and Example Two.

S.T.A.R. Labs is a Crossover Non-Basic Action Card.

Crossover
Crossover cards are cards that have two or more different energy types. In order to purchase a Crossover die, you must spend at least one of each of the card's energy type. S.T.A.R. Labs is a Bolt/Shield Crossover card which means you must spend at least a Bolt and a Shield energy in order to purchase one of the dice. A Crossover card's purchase cost can be reduced by card abilities (Blue-Eyes White Dragon: Monstrous Dragon), but you still must spend the appropriate energy types to purchase the dice. See Example Three.

Ruling - Global

S.T.A.R. Labs also has a Global ability that lets you move a Sidekick from your Used Pile to your Prep Area and another Sidekick from your Used Pile to the Field Zone, for the cost of a Bolt and a Shield. You must have at least one Sidekick in your Used Pile to use this Global. If you don't have two (or more) Sidekick dice in your Used Pile, then you would move one Sidekick to your Prep Area and the rest of the Global would fizzle. You do not get to choose which portion of the Global to use if you only have one Sidekick in the Used Pile. This Global falls under the 'do as much as you can' general rule. See Example Four.

This Global can be used during the Attack Step after blockers are assigned. When you use this Global during the Attack Step, you cannot use the Sidekick you just fielded as an attacker or blocker because the Global part of the Attack Step is after assigning attackers and assigning blockers. See Example Five.

You can use this Global as many times as you have the energy to pay for it and as long as you have at least one Sidekick in the Used Pile. All dice used during your turn go Out of Play until the end of your turn, which means any Sidekick dice used on your turn will not be in the Used Pile until the end of your turn. You cannot move any Sidekicks that you just spent as payment for the Global. This Global can also be used on your opponent's turn.

Affiliations

S.T.A.R. Labs: Advanced Research is a Non-Basic Action Card and it does not have any affiliations. Some Non-Basic Action Cards do have affiliations.

Examples

Example One:
Using S.T.A.R. Labs.


~ (Main Step) After my Roll and Reroll Step, I have three Wild energy and a S.T.A.R. Labs die in my Reserve Pool. I also have a level two Superman die (Shield character, 7A) in the Field Zone and my opponent has a character with a defense of five in the Field Zone.
~ (Main Step) I use my S.T.A.R. Labs Action die and choose my Superman die and my opponent's character die.
~ (Main Step) My opponent's character will take seven damage which is enough to KO it and it goes to the Prep Area.


Example Two:
Increasing attack value before using S.T.A.R. Labs.


~ (Main Step) After my Roll and Reroll Step, I have three Wild energy and a S.T.A.R. Labs die in my Reserve Pool. I also have a level two Superman die (Shield character, 7A) in the Field Zone and my opponent has a character with a defense of eight in the Field Zone.
~ (Main Step) I spend one of the Wild energy to use the Global on Anger Issues to increase my Superman die's attack value by one for a total of eight.
~ (Main Step) I use my S.T.A.R. Labs Action die and choose my Superman die and my opponent's character die.
~ (Main Step) My opponent's character will take eight damage which is enough to KO it and it goes to the Prep Area.


Example Three:
Reduced purchase cost.


~ (Main Step) I have two Bolt energy, one Wild energy, and Sidekick in my Reserve Pool after my Roll and Reroll.
~ (Main Step) I field the Sidekick.
~ (Main Step) I spend one Bolt energy and KO the Sidekick to use Blue-Eyes White Dragon's Global which reduces the cost of the next die I purchase by two energy.
~ (Main Step) I spend my other Bolt energy and a Wild energy and purchase a S.T.A.R. Labs die. I must spend a Bolt and Shield, even though Blue-Eyes reduced the cost by two.


Example Four:
Global with less than two Sidekicks in the Used Pile.


~ (Main Step) I have two Bolt energy, one Shield energy, and one Wild energy in my Reserve Pool after my Roll and Reroll. I also have three Sidekick dice in my Used Pile.
~ (Main Step) I spend one Bolt and one Shield to move one of the Sidekick dice in my Used Pile to my Prep Area and another one to the Field Zone as a Sidekick character.
~ (Main Step) I can spend my other Bolt and my Wild to use the Global again, but I will only be able to move the last Sidekick die to the Prep Area. I don't have a second one to move to the Field Zone.


Example Five:
Global during the Attack Step.


~ (Attack Step) I have two Bolt energy, one Shield energy, and one Wild energy in my Reserve Pool after my Main Step has ended. I have four Sidekicks in my Used Pile.
~ (Attack Step - Assign Attackers) I assign all the characters that I want to attack with.
~ (Attack Step - Assign Blockers) My opponent assigns any characters that they want to block with and chooses which attackers they're blocking.
~ (Attack Step - Actions and Globals) I can now use any Action Dice that I have in my Reserve Pool (which is none), and I can also use Global abilities.
~ (Attack Step - Actions and Globals) I spend one Bolt and one Shield to use the S.T.A.R. Labs Global. I move the first Sidekick die to the Prep Area and then the second to the Field Zone.
~ (Attack Step - Actions and Globals) I spend one Bolt and one Shield to use the S.T.A.R. Labs Global a second time and move the first Sidekick die to the Prep Area, then the second to the Field Zone.
~ (Attack Step - Assign and Resolve Damage) The two Sidekicks I moved to the Field Zone with the S.T.A.R. Labs Global are not attacking or blocking, so they deal no damage. The rest of the attackers and blockers resolve damage as normal.


Example Six:
Global during your opponent's turn.


~ (Opponent's Main Step) I have two Bolt energy, one Shield energy, and one Wild energy in my Reserve Pool after my Roll and Reroll. I also have one Sidekick dice in my Used Pile.
~ (Opponent's Main Step) After my opponent passes priority to me, I spend one Bolt and one Shield to move the Sidekick dice in my Used Pile to my Prep Area. The Sidekick dice I spent for the Global go into my Used Pile. I cannot move one of these to the Field Zone because they were not in the Used Pile when I paid for the Global.
~ (Opponent's Main Step) I can spend my other Bolt and my Wild to use the Global again. I have two Sidekicks already in my Used Pile, so now I can move one to the Prep Area and then move the other to the Field Zone. The Sidekick dice I spent for this use of the Global are now in my Used Pile.


Official Sources

You can find the official ruling on the S.T.A.R. Labs Global, here.

Page 22 of the World's Finest Rulebook under As Much As Possible vs Costed Effects discusses the 'do as much as you're able' general rule.

Competitive Play Rating

This card could very possibly be the replacement for PXG, should rotation or ban remove PXG. It's definitely a card to keep in mind, even though it's not a first pick while PXG is around. With PXG being such a predominant card in the current meta, I don't see this card making it on many teams. I look forward to a rotation/ban list so that cards like this one will actually see play. PXG speeds the meta up too much, but a Global like this one feels a little more appropriate. You will still get your bit of ramp, but at an increased cost with conditions. Don't let this card leave your memory banks! For a future non-PXG meta, I could easily bump this card up to three or even four stars, but for now, it's only at two.

S.T.A.R. Labs: Advanced Research gets a competitive play rating of two out of five stars.
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Casual Play Rating

This is a great card for casual play, but even with rotation looming, not all venues are going to enforce rotation. For those that do, this is a great replacement. The Global can be a bit confusing at first, until a newer player gets used to the 'do as much as you're able' rule. The regular ability has some strategy to it that some new players may not fully understand at first and could find it slightly confusing. I could easily recommend this card for more advanced players and it could be used to teach strategies to newer players.

S.T.A.R. Labs: Advanced Research gets a casual play rating of three out of five stars.
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Roll on, Dice Masters!

Updated 10-04-2016 at 09:40 AM by DiceDiceKitty

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Comments

  1. agentj's Avatar
    I think you should add one more example. Using it on your opponent's turn with one sidekick in used. When you pay for it you move your sidekicks to the used however, you only get the one sidekick in prep. You can't use the sidekicks you paid to get the second part of the global.
  2. DiceDiceKitty's Avatar
    Quote Originally Posted by agentj
    I think you should add one more example. Using it on your opponent's turn with one sidekick in used. When you pay for it you move your sidekicks to the used however, you only get the one sidekick in prep. You can't use the sidekicks you paid to get the second part of the global.
    I actually left that example out because I had so many already. But, even though I made mention of how you can't move the Sidekicks you spent as the Global payment, I think I should probably put that example back in - because of your suggestion. I want to cover as many angles of each card in my CCW articles as possible and adding that example back in will help reinforce that use of the Global. Thanks! :3
  3. KennedyHawk's Avatar
    Surprised by the low rating competitively. Even with PXG this is a great option. A lot of players don't even bring PXG and rely on their opponent. It's a lot harder to match two energy types than just a mask, I can see this being used on a lot of teams just for the fact that it provides ramp AND a blocker.
  4. DiceDiceKitty's Avatar
    Quote Originally Posted by KennedyHawk
    Surprised by the low rating competitively. Even with PXG this is a great option. A lot of players don't even bring PXG and rely on their opponent. It's a lot harder to match two energy types than just a mask, I can see this being used on a lot of teams just for the fact that it provides ramp AND a blocker.

    My ratings are how I personally think the card fits in the current meta based off of my own observations. My ratings are not perfect and are only opinion. I don't see this card replacing PXG while PXG is still legal. That's why my opinion of it is lower than other folks.