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Xyn's Daily Unit Review
#31
2 era's is also a pretty costly commitment. I'd argue that any deck Willing to spend 30+ on healing deserves some heavy resilience to wounding.

Any deck who's primary strategy involves wounding the back row but can't penetrate 2 defense just deserves to be beaten by Era IMO. If you have lighter amounts of back row wounding, you can use it early on to slow them down (and possibly force them to over commit to rushing out Era) and then stop trying to wound them once Era comes out.

The only truly broken thing with Era is the pairing with Matriarch, since Kil into Era (or Evelyn into Era) is such an easy combo to build a deck around.

But I will agree that it's an insanely good deal to get at least one Era and anyone would be crazy to pass it up, which is slightly worrying from an over flooding perspective. 2 Era is less troubling to me, because the advantages of 2 over 1 are a little more limited, and at a cost of 2400, that's 6 core packs worth that you are losing out on.

I already had one Era, and I'm not spending 1200 on a second one (although I can see why some would). But if I had no Era, I'd definitely have gotten one today.
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#32
You only need one Era. I have two, but I've never used two to any good effect. One Era might be worth getting, though.
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#33
[Image: pdeck-391b30ff7613b1fa609ae14cd2a68aca.png]

= Barriston =
Usefulness:
- Very Low to Moderate

Barriston is an interesting unit. He's the only unit in the game that can wound someone across from him and knock them out all at the same time. Unfortunately, the requirements for doing so tend to make him too unwieldy to work well in most decks.

Deck Building Strategy:
- Duo Randal

There's only one major strategy, which is to pair him with Randal to allow him to wound units, and thus knock them out at the same time. Randal costs 5 gold to hire though, and he's not that remarkable of a unit otherwise, Flourish tending to be a fairly underwhelming ability most of the time at the moment.

Additionally, Randal is a Mountain type, so even though he has no Defense to be buffed, he can theoretically be used to buff Laginn's Stone Ram. I'm not sure how worthwhile this is of your time though, as adding Laginn just brings in yet another semi-expensive semi-unwieldy unit into the mix.

Technically Barriston can also be used for production to help offset some of his problems, but you're going to have to rush him out pretty quick to avoid losing all but one of his gold production if your opponent is a rush army and gets you below 8 HP.

Tactics:
- Instant Knockout

Barriston's major trick is to wound and then knock out the unit in front of him immediately. He can wound through up to 1 defense, so there are a decent number of powerful units he can do this to.

As with any wounder, the top slot is often the best place for him. However this will also be predictable, so try to find clever other places to use him once your opponent expects him, or keep him in the top slot to deter them from putting their own wounders there. Remember that a Spike with Protect buffing him will still block Barriston.

Technically you can use Barriston for production, but remember that this will show your opponent to expect Barriston and lose some of the surprise factor. Unfortunately, you'll almost never see a Randal in most decks either, so even showing a Randal can make players suspect. Ideally, if you can hire Barriston and Randal on the same turn, you stand the best chance of catching your opponent totally off guard, but this can be hard to pull off.

Xyn's Buyer Recommendation:
- Don't Buy

Barriston has a very awesome concept, but I feel like he needs some small tweaks to make him worth using. Maybe just a tweak to Randal (or flourish in general?) would make the difference. Conversely, I'd hate to see Barriston become TOO easy to build a deck around, because that's one mean and powerful combination of abilities he has.

For now, especially for 1200 gems, I'd say it's not worth it. He's worth experimenting with if you happen to get one, but at the moment he's not the kind of unit that I'd go out of my way to purchase.
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#34
I want to love Barriston, but I haven't managed to get him into a deck that works well.
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#35
(01-21-2015, 09:07 AM)Xyn Wrote: 2 era's is also a pretty costly commitment. I'd argue that any deck Willing to spend 30+ on healing deserves some heavy resilience to wounding.

Any deck who's primary strategy involves wounding the back row but can't penetrate 2 defense just deserves to be beaten by Era IMO. If you have lighter amounts of back row wounding, you can use it early on to slow them down (and possibly force them to over commit to rushing out Era) and then stop trying to wound them once Era comes out.

The only truly broken thing with Era is the pairing with Matriarch, since Kil into Era (or Evelyn into Era) is such an easy combo to build a deck around.

But I will agree that it's an insanely good deal to get at least one Era and anyone would be crazy to pass it up, which is slightly worrying from an over flooding perspective. 2 Era is less troubling to me, because the advantages of 2 over 1 are a little more limited, and at a cost of 2400, that's 6 core packs worth that you are losing out on.

I already had one Era, and I'm not spending 1200 on a second one (although I can see why some would). But if I had no Era, I'd definitely have gotten one today.

well... also transform commander deck will get a lot of benefits with era (or even two)... still i think it should be nerfed a bit.
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#36
[Image: pdeck-e7a8288dae98780269ae455f802f23de.png]

= Zender =

Usefulness:
- Low to Moderate

Zender is a kinda cool unit, but he just seems to lack... something. Not a bad unit, but he could probably use some kind of buff.

Deck Building Strategy:
- Spirits

Spirits are the main use of Zender. He can be used elsewhere, but his shortcomings are just a little to great to recommend him in non spirit decks if you can avoid it.

Tactics:
- Juggled Economy
- Buffing Nevil

Zender is basically the same in either row, so just shift him around to help juggle your units and protect any row you need to. If one of your 2 crystal producers must be wounded, make it Zender since he can still sell for 5 Crystal.

Push him front row when Nevil is in the front row to buff Nevil's attack.

Xyn's Buyer's Guide:
- Buy only if you have 2 Nevil. Maybe.

Zender just isn't that great. Not terrible, but not that great. If you have 2 Nevil and not enough spirits to buff them, maybe get a Zender or two to help buff them.

But even then, I'm not sure if I'd bother spending 90 to 180 gems on Zender. Spirits aren't the most powerful deck out there, and Zender isn't the best Spirit.

You should probably skip this one.
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#37
I use Zender in one of my better decks, but only found a real use for him after already having 2 nevils, 1 Woleah, and a 10-cost spirit commander. If you have all of these things, you probably already have 1 zender.
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#38
Yeah, admittedly I've never found much of a good use for Zender in my own decks, so my own personal bias creeps in a bit. But from experience against him as well, he's just not someone who's integral to most decks. Useful in plenty of crystal decks, sure, but only if you already happen to have 1 or 2.

He is definitely not a bad unit. I'd love to see him get some kind of small buff, but he isn't totally broken. But for his utility, 90 to 180 gems suddenly becomes a pretty steep price.

The next few reviews could be a bit more abrupt, I'm a little under the weather. I'll try to cover as many of the main points of each unit as I can recall in my semi-fever addled state.
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#39
Atrophus is a much better cheap windfall for crystal.
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#40
[Image: pdeck-87f904d0845360a793a7a5185a765375.png]

= Ekin =

Usefulness:
- Low to Moderate

Ekin isn't a bad unit, and normally I'm a very big fan of 4 cost units, but Ekin is just a bit of a so so unit. For 1 Crystal more, Yaran has twice as much fireball, which tends to be a LOT more useful.

Deck Building Strategy:
- Acolyte Wizard/Zealot Rush

The only use I've really found for Ekin is in a Zealot rush. Everywhere else, he just doesn't quite seem worth the space he takes in a deck. You'll need a couple of Bin's, one or two Lare's, and as many cheap Wizards as you can manage (A Wizard Commander, Hagel's, Ekin's, Striker's, etc).

Tactics:
- Early Attack
- Zealot Buffing

4 Attack is actually a pretty nice thing to have sometimes. If you aren't actively buffing Zealot units from the back row, Ekin is usually best used for some cheap early attack.

As soon as you area ready for your main Zealot attack, keep Ekin back row all the time. Don't worry about getting wounded, as you can still buff Zealots with wounded WIzards. As per usual, try to aim your fireballs low and/or at strategic targets if possible.

Xyn's Buyer Recommendation:
- Don't Buy

Even Zealot Rushes tend to require a disproportionate number of rares to make work, and it's not that great of a strategy anyways. There are better Wizards for use in most Zealot decks, and Ekin, while not being a terrible unit, just isn't really worth 90 to 180 gems.
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