SW Preview: Battle of the Commons
Not everyone gets a trophy.

Summoner Wars | 2016-04-10

Swamp Orcs symbol

Programming Note: Due to the large number of cards to preview, we are starting the previews before the pre-orders are available. Pre-orders will be up soon. Plus, Preview Monday will be twice as nice as usual, with TWO Summoner Wars previews per day. TWO!

And we’re back with another edition of “Vine Walls and you!”

Actually, this set of cards out of Natazga’s deck isn’t really all about Vine Walls, though the Swamp Orcs wouldn’t be Swamp Orcs unless they did something with the vines. Well – I take that back. This guy really is all about Vine Walls… so much so that its basically his lifelong dream to become one.

Zealot

About as straight forward as they come, folks.  Give up an attack, deny the opponent a magic, and make a Vine Wall.  Kind of like Skrub, who must be his idol. To be honest about this card, I used it more for its 2 AV for 1 magic than I did for its ability, but sometimes there just aren’t cards on the board that you want to attack, and this will give you something to do with an extra attack slot. However, thanks to his 2 AV, you can always just beat on a Wall instead and try to use OVERGROWTH to get that Vine Wall. But in Natazga’s deck where you can’t just kill one of your own guys to automatically get a Vine Wall when you’re trying to grow that swamp, these guys have a place.

Thinking about it further though… everyone likes Mugglug’s Event, Vine Growth, which lets you place a Vine Wall adjacent to a Wall.  This guys basically says for an extra magic and one of your attacks this turn, you can place a Vine Wall up to 3 spaces away from one of your Walls.  And if you can keep him alive for a turn or two, you can get some attack dice in before you do that.

Here’s a card though where its ability gets used all the time:

Swamp Archer

The 2-ranged / 1 for 2 statline isn’t something the Swamp Orcs have had up to this point, and this card is a great addition! The ability to attack through Vine Walls with 2 dice is potent – oftentimes meaning that these guys can snipe safely as opponents won’t want to risk moving through the vines to engage them.   And there’s that 2-attack value again – key in Natazga’s deck for being able to trigger OVERGROWTH, and this time from range. It’s a big deal to be able to sit back on your side of the Battlefield (potentially even protected by a Vine Wall!) while dumping more Vine Walls onto your opponent’s side.

Perhaps the most interesting common that Natazga fields, though, has nothing to do with Vine Walls at all:

Skull Taker

All he wants to do is kill you and take your skull.  Obviously the big thing here is the statline – 2 Life / 2 Attack Value for 1 magic. We saw Shiva’s Puppets a couple weeks back with the same excellent stats, but the statline is even more prominent here. Considering that these guys don’t get magic for killing Units, and Natazga’s deck gives you extra incentive to attack Walls, using these cheap, beefier Units to beat on Walls seems like a match made in heaven. Or rather, in murky swamp heaven. Skull Takers excel at bashing down walls and creating more Vine Walls to choke out the opponent. They do lack the ability to freely move off of Vine Walls, though if you do manage to get a card under them due to TROPHY, moving off of a Vine Wall and failing is a nice way to self-kill them and get that extra magic! 

But if you do manage to take a TROPHY, you might want to try and keep them around for a while…

Battle Champion

…to use that skull and level up!  A drawback to pounding on Walls all the time or using Skull Takers as part of your main attack force is that Natazga is oftentimes short on magic.  She likes to summon these 3 Common Units to keep up the pressure and pound on enemy Walls or otherwise jump out of deeply placed vines, and, with her short magic supply, this can sometimes make Champions tough to field.  Battle Champion is a method she has for easing up on that a bit. Using this on a Skull Taker with just 1 Unit under it will give you a 4 magic discount on any champ. If you can manage to pump one up a bit, you can get some of the bigger champs out for next to nothing! Taking skulls can have its benefits!

Thanks again for reading, everyone!  Check back again next week for more from Scraven and Malenatar, which includes a couple of blasts from the past!

Second Summoner Previews:
Kynstri's Mission
Saturos: Part 1, Part 2
Natazga: Part 1
Malenatar: Part 1
Scraven: Part 1
Little Meda: Part 1
Shiva: Part 1
Brath: Part 1
Farrah: Part 1


Comments


glenn3e commented:

SKULLS FOR THE SKULL THRONE!

Posted on 2016-04-11.

Irisches Glueck commented:

Glurbulb will love Zealots
Mugglug will love Swamp Archers
Natazga loves them all but especially likes Skull Takers with Battle Champion. =]

Posted on 2016-04-11.

MrKillean commented:

@glenn3e Blood for the blood god! :D

Posted on 2016-04-11.

Alba commented:

I can has pre-order?

Posted on 2016-04-11.

Nightfall commented:

SKULLS FOR THE SKULL THRONE!
BLOOD FOR THE BLOOD GOD!
AND TOOTHS FOR THE TOOTH FAIRY!

or something like that ... =)

Posted on 2016-04-11.

MrKillean commented:

It seems like you can set up some nice defence with these archers just in case you're not doing well enough to KILL EVERYBODY and take their skulls. :)

Also, it looks like you can pull off some crazy outplays and have this power turn when you summon a strong champion for free and destroy everything while still having some mana to back you up.

Posted on 2016-04-11.

Syurtpiutha commented:

How many Battle champions are there in the deck?


Posted on 2016-04-11.

killercactus commented:

Two copies of Battle Champion.

Posted on 2016-04-11.

Adam commented:

I want your skulls.

Posted on 2016-04-11.

LemonMerchant commented:

I particularly like the archer/skrub synergy. I look forward to seeing the last events. Corrosion is going to be the bread-and-butter card of this deck.

Posted on 2016-04-11.

Villager A commented:

Nice, love the art especially for the skull takers. Swamp archers... i've been dreaming about that ability for years :)
Overall, not a big fan of battle champion. You need to get at least 2 enemies under skull taker in order for the card to have a net worth of 1 magic. Compared to magic drain and its net worth of 3 it seems pretty weak.

Posted on 2016-04-11.

Prelate commented:

Don't forget you get a 2 magic discount for discarding the Skull Taker as well. Therefore a Skull Taker with 1 card under it gives a 4 magic discount.

Posted on 2016-04-11.

ZeeJr commented:

I, too have been wishing for the Swamp Archer's ability for years.

Posted on 2016-04-11.

Jarrema commented:

Skull Taker cost is 3 (2 plus card itself). With one unit under it, it gives 4 discount for 1 cost (event card).

That makes it even. You need at least 2 cards under Skull Taker for a net gain.

Of course, there is also Skull Taker itself. It can be used for something before being discarded

EDIT: my mistake. ST cost is 1+1. Prelate is right. And it makes using event on ST with one trophy +1 net gain


Posted on 2016-04-11.

Irisches Glueck commented:

the other nice think with the Skull Taker/Battle Champion combo is it places the champion where the skull taker was; that is often times the real benefit to Battle Champion

Posted on 2016-04-12.

BTBAM commented:

And it's an Event phase play, that can be helpful.

Posted on 2016-04-12.

Villager A commented:

My rationale was that the 4 magic could be obtained by killing said enemy, not summoning ST, and 2 more from building ST and the event card into magic since theyre getting discarded anyways. Once you get two trophies it starts becoming profitable but the risk also increases.
That is a good point about summoning during event phase. We'll see if there are any other events that can capitalize on this.

Posted on 2016-04-12.

killercactus commented:

The other thing is that I bet there are Skull Takers that start on the board, and are thus free.

Posted on 2016-04-12.

glenn3e commented:

You don't really want Skull Takers wirh cards underneath them as they have a big bullseye on them. Neither can STs cull each other. So if there's an opportunity to Battle Champ with a Champ in your hand, go for it. Getting a free Prong is pretty good regardless of the loss of a ST.

Posted on 2016-04-13.

prometheuslkr commented:

Spore Carriers is getting so much love in this set... Reap 2 magic from your Skull Taker or Changeling Savager, and then summon an Invader so you don't have to give up board presence.

Skull Takers are also going to be great at punishing enemies who play champ heavy, which is challenging for Glurblub. You play champs? I play 2/2 for 1 commons whose ability isn't a negative.

Posted on 2016-04-13.

McBehrer commented:

I helped playtest Natazga, and she is perhaps one of my favorite summoners in the GAME. She is SO NASTY! Ruthlessly aggressive, and once she starts going she can just steamroll even the most tank-y of summoners.

Posted on 2016-04-14.

I LIKE TAU! commented:

I like how the subtitle is that "not everyone gets a trophy". Now I'm imagining the opposite; what if all the zealots and skulltakers got participation awards after each fight? A mother skulltaker tearing up because her son skulltaker just got his first trophy. So sweet.

Posted on 2016-04-14.

Aogiri_Maou commented:

prometheuslkr : What do you mean? You cannot include changeling nor Invaders into a Glurblub deck, can you?

Posted on 2016-04-29.

Carthoris commented:

glenn3e commented:
... Getting a free Prong is pretty good regardless of the loss of a ST.

That's what she said.

Posted on 2016-07-08.

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