Into the Breach: Pilots

Hello everybody, Geek Generation here with more stuff on Into the Breach.

As you play the game, whether you win or lose, you get to choose to send one surviving pilot through time, into your next game. When starting a new game, remember not to feel too obligated to use this pilot that has come from some other timeline. It’s better to choose a fresh pilot if there’s another with a better fit to your game plan.

For pilots, i’ll classify them as top tier which you’ll usually play them as starter pilot or as non-top tier which you’ll prefer to pick up along the way.

PilotRalphKarlsson
Ralph Karlsson: Gain +2 bonus XP per kill

Ralph’s Karlsson’s ability is not very useful. It’s not hard to reach max level especially if you manage your pilots by swapping them around i.e. swapping a pilots from non-damaging mechs with pilots from high damage mechs. Even if you pilot swapping is not your playstyle, you should be able to max level all your pilots by simply carefully leaving higher xp kills to your lower level pilots.

You’ll stop using him once you get any other pilot.

PilotCamilaVera
Camila Vera: Mech unaffected by Webbing and Smoke

Camila Vera is a top tier pilot. She’s useful even when you’re not using the Rusting Hulks squad, which prodces lots of smoke. When playing with Camila, place her closer to the Veks that can web to use her ability to the fullest.

I didn’t think Camila was very good at first, thinking the ability was mediocre at best. It turns out to be a real gem after i used her a couple of times. Web immunity doesn’t just mean your Camila is free to do whatever she wants, it also means that your other mechs, instead of having to cc to free your webbed mech, can cc the other vek.

PilotLilyReed
Lily Reed: Gain +3 Move on first turn of every mission

I don’t find Lily Reed to be very useful. She probably shines in maps where the center is occupied by a huge block of mountains. Those maps tend to be a killer for slow and non-flying, non-range squads.

Personally, i don’t like doing block Vek missions, which also probably reduces my need for Lily.

PilotKazaaakpleth
Kazaaakpleth: 2 damage melee attack replaces Repair

Kazaaakpleth is a top tier pilot. I tend to pick it for squads with Science mechs. Plop it into any non-damaging mechs and your dps increases by alot. The melee attack also pushes, which also helps to complement some mechs that need a push cc.

The only time Kazaaakpleth would require careful consideration is when you want to equip it into a self damaging mech. Not that it’s not possible, but you’ll have to know what you’re doing if your doing that.

PilotGana
Gana: Deploy anywhere on the map, damaging adjacent enemies (1 power)

The damage is of minimal consequence. It’s helpful if you can kill of a 1 health mantis. But its effect is cancelled by a healing Psion. The ability shines when you’re playing the Block Vek missions.

Gana also helps a little with the train escort missions as you can get to the other side of the train right at the beginning, and hopefully blocking off some Vek from getting to bad positions for the train. Not a pilot i would pick as a starter, but i don’t mind picking him up along the way.

PilotArchimedes PilotChenRong
Archimedes: Move again after shooting (1 power)
Chen Rong: After attacking, gain 1 free tile movement

I don’t value these two pilots very highly. Archimedes is very useful for maintaining the center position after an attack. But i don’t usually pick him as a starter. Chen Rong, because his ability does not require power, can be used early in the game for some Science mechs where they need to get out of the line of fire after doing their science thing. That said, i think Kazaaakpleth’s ability outshine these two pilots as a starter. These are pilots i would rather pick up along the way. If i really have to pick one of this mobility pilots, i’ll go with Chen Rong because you can use the ability much earlier, which is when it tends to matter more.

PilotIssacJones
Issac Jones: Gain 1 extra ‘Reset Turn’ every battle

Issac Jones ability does not really give any in-game edge, but it’s really helpful to have one more ‘Reset Turn’. Even the best players in the world makes mistakes every now and then. And when you catch yourself making a mistake during the first turn, having Issac Jones makes the game a more comfortable experience. Issac Jones is a nice pick up along the way.

PilotHenryKwan PilotProspero
Henry Kwan: Mech can move through enemy units
Prospero: Mech gains Flying (1 power)

Henry Kwan is a top tier pilot. The ability to reposition your mechs without getting blocked by annoying Veks (Psions of all things -_-) is truly a gem.

At the cost of 1 power, Prospero can fly over chasms and also attack while in water.

Unless all your non-ranged mechs are flying, Henry Kwan is a good choice. I only pick Prospero as starter if he comes with a reactor core.

PilotBethanyJones PilotAbeIsamu
Bethany Jones: Mech starts every mission with a Shield
Abe Isamu: Mech gains Armored

I feel that these pilots are outclassed by the top tier pilots. Definitely don’t mind picking them up along the way as their defensive abilities gives you more options. But i don’t usually start with them.

To be fair, i do believe that Abe Isamu has more value than i give it credit for.

PilotAriadne
Ariadne: +3 Health and Immune to Fire

Like Bethany and Abe, Ariadne is a defensive pilot. Ariadne’s immunity to fire is what makes it a top tier pilot. The best use of Ariadne is in self damaging mechs. Ariadne’s high health pool lets you go through the mission with minimal repairs. Fire immunity lets these self damaging mechs go onto forest tiles, increasing your options by alot.

PilotSilica
Silica: Mech can act twice if it does not move (2 power)

Personally, i don’t like Silica. The ability requires 2 power, a premium price for situations that do not occur very often. It’s not very often that you can afford to not move your mechs.

PilotHaroldSchmidt
Harold Schmidt: Push adjacent tiles when repairing

I’ll say Harold Schmidt is a top tier pilot even though i don’t start with him very often. I tend to use Kazaakpleth over Harold if i need the push cc. It really comes down to your playstyle. Do you want a 2 damage melee attack or do you want the ability to heal.

PilotMafan
Mafan: +1 Reactor Core. Reduce Mech HP to 1. Gain Shield every turn.

Mafan is a top tier pilot. It’s the only pilot that let’s you start the game with 2 reactor cores. But i prefer to have +1 Move on Mafan coz the mechs i put Mafan in tend not to need that many cores.

Gaining a Shield every turn offers a gameplay that’s usually not available to other mechs. Except maybe Abe. I tend to put Mafan in bruts, so they can block a firefly’s attack while shooting something else far away. That lets you solve 2 Vek problems with 1 mech.

Also, with a shield, your mech is immune to fire as long as it doesn’t lose the shield.

Ok, so much for now on pilots, Geek Generation out.

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Into the Breach: General Tips and Questions

Hello everybody, Geek Generation here with more on Into the Breach.

The best advice i can give anyone is to immediately re-map the “End Turn” key away from space bar. If you’ve been playing the game for awhile, chances are you would have turned off the need for confirmation for end of turn. The results is usually disastrous if the turn is accidentally ended prematurely.

The first time it happened, my nephew was playing with a ball and it landed on the keyboard. With the space key being such a huge target, it was easily an hour of gameplay wasted. It usually takes me half an hour for a corporate island.

After that, i re-mapped it to the enter key on the numpad. I thought it made sense to put it there, it’s out of the way from stray nephew hands and accessible to my thumb should i want to press it. Until i had fat thumbs.. Now i’ve re-mapped it the forawrd slash at the numpad hoping that i will never again lose all my power through events other than gameplay.

One of the important things to realize about the game is that the pilots are expendable. Sometimes, it’s better to sacrifice your pilot by using him/her/it to block lethal damage that would have damaged your grid. Especially if your pilot is a generic pilot that doesn’t provide any reactor cores and it’s the last few turns of the mission.

Volcano Island

Speaking of dying, dying in phase 1 of Volcano Island is not a game ending consequence. All your mechs are revived to full health in phase 2. Even the “Reset Turn”(s) are refreshed. However, you do not get any opportunity to rearrange your reactor cores. So prior to entering the volcano island, make sure the reactor cores granted by the pilot is used to power something that you can do without. Reactor cores granted by the pilot are green in color.

Also, bear in mind that lava (not tentacles) is not instantaneous death for your mechs. Lava is like water, it prevents your non-flying mechs from using skills. The only difference is that lava sets your mech on fire.

Can i destroy the giant volcano in phase 1 to take the treasures hidden underneath it?

Unfortunately, the giant volcano in phase 1 is undamageable. The elusive treasures will never be ours : (

Center is King

When moving your mechs into engagement, always keep in mind that the tiles closer to the center are the best tiles tactically. Being near the center means your mechs can reach more tiles during the next turn. Always keep this in mind when there are multiple positions that you can attack a Vek from. Ranged class mechs usually stay at artillery range though.

AoE is Collateral Damage

When upgrading mechs, do keep in mind that bigger AoE isn’t always a good thing. The possibility of collateral damage might restrict your mech’s options.

+1 Move is Valuable

Do not underestimate the value of using reactor cores to upgrade your mech’s hp and move. +1 move might not seem alot, but it could be all the difference needed to reach an enemy or even flank an enemy and push it into the water.

Vek Spawning Tiles

Vek spawning tiles do not go away after it has been blocked. They are delayed to the next turn adding more to the spawn next turn. Ergo, sometimes it’s better to reconsider the style points of killing off Vek via making them block. Sometimes it’s better to let everything spawn so that you can kill them off so that the Vek numbers wouldn’t stack up.

That said, sometimes you might have to block so you have more mech to Vek ratio the next turn to grant you time to kill off particularly troublesome Veks.

Last but not least, don’t forget that your mechs can repair even when they’re frozen. Repairing removes all status effects, including acid and ice.

Ok so much for now, Geek Generation out.

Into the Breach: An indie tactical

Hello everybody, Geek Generation here. I’ve been playing lots of Into the Breach and i thought i’ll post some stuff on the game. Gauging by Steam’s records, i’ve played Into the Breach for 131 hours already even though i’ve only gotten the game for slightly more than a month. I think the game is really engaging.

The developers of Into the Breach are the same ones that made FTL. If you liked FTL, you’ll probably like Into the Breach even though they are not the same type of games. I find Into the Breach much more enjoyable. I feel that there’s less deadly rng involved in Into the Breach, and it is turn based. FTL requires alot more apm (actions per minute) than Into the Breach.

In a sentence, the game is an open information, turn based, grid based, roguelike, tactical game. The game begins by sending in your squad of mechs into the battlefield. Once your mechs are deployed, you need to survive for 5 turns while attempting to fulfill the mission objectives.

Then the Vek would spawn, and more would spawn every turn. The Vek moves first, telegraphing their attacks for the next turn. The Vek might attack your mechs or any of the buildings on the map (or stuff encased in ice). Once the Vek finishes moving and telegraphing, the turn ends. The new turn begins with environment effects followed by your turn. During your turn, you do your best to kill Vek, complete objectives, and minimize damage to your buildings.

Whenever you lose a building, you lose one power from your power grid (some tiles have 2 buildings). You lose the game when you run out of power.

Friendly fire exists in the game. Vek can shoot Vek, you can shoot your own mechs (sometimes you’ll want to (for the crowd control), you can shoot your own buildings too.

Mechs can be upgraded with reactor cores that you find from pods that have a chance of dropping from the sky every mission. Some mission objectives give you a reactor core. Pilots in a mech can gain experience whenever a Vek dies. Leveling a Pilot can grant stats (hp/move) or more power grid defence or even a reactor core.

You proceed through the game via protecting 2 to 4 corporate islands by doing missions in that islands. Once you’ve “protected” (you can fail badly) atleast 2 corporate islands, you can proceed to the volcano island for the final mission.

Ok, that’s about all i can think of to briefly describe the game. Next post i’ll talk about some tips and tricks followed by analysis of the different squads, pilots, equipment and maybe even Veks. Geek Generation out.

Hearthstone: Marrowgar, Saurfang, Deathwhisper

Hello everybody, Geek Generation here. Frozen Knights expansion just got released and woooo.. it is exciting.

I think a large part of what makes the expansion exciting is that solo content, adventures was released together. It makes for a more fulfilling experience than just opening packs and waiting a month or two before crafting cards that i need (because dust is hard to come by).

Anyway, i got round to defeating all three bosses. Here are my decklists.

Lord Marrowgar

Lord Marrowgar heals to full health every turn. The only deck i could think of that could do 30 damage in a turn was jades. But after looking through the forums, i realized that an otk priest could do it too.

I lost the first time and decided to put in all the chemists to deal with the 0/8s. But when i played the second time, i forgot to click on the new deck and continued to use the Standard jade druid i used the first time. But i managed to get the win though, all it takes is to get lucky and ramp up the jade count early.

2 x Innervate
2 x Earthen Scales
2 x Jade Idol
2 x Wild Growth
2 x Wrath
2 x Feral Rage
2 x Jade Blossom
2 x Swipe
2 x Nourish

1 x Bloodmage Thalnos
1 x Gluttonous Ooze
1 x Fandral Staghelm
2 x Jade Spirit
1 x Aya Blackpaw
2 x Gadgetzan Auctioneer
2 x Jade Behemoth
2 x Primordial Drake

Build code for the deck:
AAECAZICBO0FrqsClL0C08UCDUBf/gHEBqQH5Ai+qwK0uwLLvALPvALdvgL5wALJxwIA
To use this deck, copy it to your clipboard and create a new deck in Hearthstone

Deathbringer Saurfang

Deathbrigner Saurfang didn’t seem too difficult. Saurfang has 20 health, but can only be damaged by weapons. Which means Saurfang is effectively immune when he’s swinging his own weapon.

Don’t be afraid of using the first few weapons to stabilize the board.

2 x Upgrade!
2 x Execute
2 x Fiery War Axe
2 x Forge of Souls
2 x King’s Defender
2 x Death’s Bite
2 x Arcanite Reaper
1 x Tentacles for Arms
1 x Gorehowl

2 x Armorsmith
1 x Hobart Grapplehammer
1 x Acolyte of Pain
2 x Ravaging Ghoul
2 x Stonehill Defender
2 x Bloodhoof Brave
2 x Alley Armorsmith
2 x Direhorn Hatchling

Build code for the deck:
AAEBAQcEqgb7DIerAqK8Ag2wApED/wPUBJEGjQ7EFYKtAtKuAv68ApvCAqLHAvbPAgA=
To use this deck, copy it to your clipboard and create a new deck in Hearthstone

Lady Deathwhisper

Lady Deathwhisper seem to be a little harder than the other bosses. It took me a while to figure out a winning deck list. The idea is similar to otk priest that had lots of card draw.

When the chemists swap the Valithria’s stats, it becomes undamaged.

2 x Circle of Healing
2 x Silence
2 x Binding Heal
2 x Inner Fire
2 x Potion of Madness
2 x Divine Spirit
2 x Shadow Visions
2 x Shadow Word: Pain
2 x Shadow Word: Death
1 x Dragonfire Potion

2 x Northshire Cleric
2 x Crazed Alchemist
2 x Loot Hoarder
2 x Radiant Elemental
2 x Kooky Chemist
1 x Emperor Thaurissan

Build code for the deck:
AAEBAZ/HAgLWEeq/Ag77AfgCoQalCdEK0grTCtcK8gzhugK1uwLRwQLSwQLYwQIA
To use this deck, copy it to your clipboard and create a new deck in Hearthstone

Ok so much for now. Happy games, Geek Generation out.

Hearthstone: Aggro Druid into rank 5

Hello everybody, Geek Generation here.

I’ve been playing variations of Dinomancy Hunter, Sherazin Value, Control Paladin up to rank 10 tier. But i usually hovered around ranks 8 and 7 with those decks.

For breaking into rank 5, i decided to switch to Aggro Druid chiefly because the deck has faster games. Additionally, the deck can simply win by some crazy opening turns.

2 x Innervate
2 x Bloodsail Corsair
2 x Enchanted Raven
2 x Fire Fly
2 x Hungry Crab
2 x Mark of the Lotus
1 x Patches the Pirate
2 x Golakka Crawler
2 x Mark of Y’Sharrj
2 x Power of the Wild
2 x Ravasaur Rant
2 x Tortollan Forager
2 x Savage Roar
2 x Vicious Fledgling
1 x Swipe
2 x Druid of the Claw

There are probably better versions of Aggro Druid out there. The list is as such because i didn’t have epics like Bittertide Hydra and Living Mana. Living Mana is really important for Aggro Druid. With Living Mana missing, i’m missing plan B of the deck.

I used Hungry Crab as substitution for Living Mana. Hungry Crabs are not too bad even when there are no murlocs to eat. As a 1 drop beast, the crab kind of helps out with the buffs.

Golakka Crawler is necessary. It hits quite a few decks, not just Pirate Warrior. Variations of Rogue, even fellow Aggro Druids have Pirate targets.

The seemingly weird inclusion is probably Tortollan Forager. I find it to be a great card though. It’s a 2 drop with no hesitation attached. Unlike Golakka Crawler, there’s no concern for saving it for Pirates (or even unwanted consumption of your own pirates). And unlike Ravasaur Rant, there’s no need to consider having more minions on the board. Plus, it occasionally gives some pretty good late game minions.

Prolly the only decks that doesn’t want Tortollan Forager is Jade Druid. Give Tortollan Forager a try if you’ve never used it before. You won’t be dissapointed.

Mulligan wise, i always keep Vicious Fledglings. The card has so much win written on it. Keep Innervates (but not both), and trade in everything else for early drops on turn 1 and 2.

So much for now, Geek Generation out.

Hearthstone: Ungoro Park Results

Hello everybody, Geek Generation here. Prior to my Ungoro Park run, i had reached rank 15 with Jade Shaman sporting Dirty Rat. As i said before, Dirty Rat is an all round good minion because it disrupts minion-based quests and the only drawback is dropping out a giant. Even Sherazin is easily answered with Devolve.

¬†Without further ado, here’s Ungoro Park’s deck list again, with no changes.

2 x Jeweled Macaw
2 x Raptor Hatchling
2 x Crackling Razormaw
2 x Dinomancy
2 x Kindly Grandmother
2 x Scavenging Hyena
1 x Trogg Beastrager
2 x Animal Companion
2 x Eaglehorn Bow
2 x Kill Command
2 x Rat Pack
2 x Dispatch Kodo
2 x Houndmaster
2 x Tundra Rhino
2 x Savannah Highmane
1 x Swamp King Dred

With Ungoro Park, i pushed from rank 15 to rank 10. You’ll notice there wasn’t much games played, because i hardly lost from rank 15 to 12, garnering lots of bonus stars. At rank 12, the opponents become a little tougher and i started to lose one or two games every now and then.

Against Rogue, again there wasn’t much the deck can do accept hope for bad draws. The times i won was against Quest Rogue and an unanswered turn 5 Tundra Rhino. The games simply could not be won without Tundra Rhino on board.

Against Fire Plume warriors, it depends on how much control they bring/draw. Two Executes usually seals the deal for them. Sleep With The Fishes is also devastating, since the deck controls the board with ever growing but damaged Beasts.

Swamp King Dred won me a couple games, not just because of its utility, but it’s a 9/9 for seven mana.

Mulligan wise, you’re looking for early drops that costs one or two mana. Keep Eaglehorn or Animal Companion if you have a one or two drop already, Houndmaster if you have (a one or two drop) + (coin). You’ll also want to mulligan away one drops if you’re going second against classes that can deal one damage with their hero power, like Paladin, Mage, Rogue. Unless you got the Trogg in the opening hand.

I always keep 1 copy of Dinomancy. It is the core of the deck, after all. The usual turns to play Dinomancy are turns 2 and 4+. Turn 2 Dinomancy happens only when you don’t have any 2 drops. In that case, swapping out Steady Shot helps improve mana efficiency in the later turns. For turns 4 and 5, always fight for board presence even if it means forgoing the chance to play Dinomancy. It is always better to buff an attacking Beast rather than a Beast you’ve just played.

Ah.. i was about to put the win rates in here and then i realized i didn’t turn on Hearthstone Deck Tracker : ( Oh well.. Ungoro Park is good for playing to rank 10, if that helps. Fares badly against Pirate Warriors, but didn’t see much of those.

So much for now. I think i’ll try out Sherazin next, since i opened it in the packs. Geek Generation out.

Hearthstone: Ungoro Park

Hello everybody, Geek Generation here.

This week’s Tavern Brawl is pretty sweet. This week’s brawl lets us choose from 9 Ungoro decks (one from each class). If you’re hesitating about crafting some cards like quests or elementals, you can try playing with them in the Brawl before you decide.

Dinomancy

Although i didn’t get to play with The Marsh Queen, i am glad that they showcased Dinomancy. Dinomancy is surprisingly good. Even though the hero power is restrictive, in that it not only requires you to have a minion on board, but that minion has to be a Beast too, it does seem powerful enough.

Dinomancy is one of those sleeper cards whose power level is way too subtle, until it gets played against you. Since i had playset of it, i decide to try it out using the deck recipe as a base.

2 x Jeweled Macaw
2 x Raptor Hatchling
2 x Crackling Razormaw
2 x Dinomancy
2 x Kindly Grandmother
2 x Scavenging Hyena
1 x Trogg Beastrager
2 x Animal Companion
2 x Eaglehorn Bow
2 x Kill Command
2 x Rat Pack
2 x Dispatch Kodo
2 x Houndmaster
2 x Tundra Rhino
2 x Savannah Highmane
1 x Swamp King Dred

Swamp_King_Dred

Since i also had a copy of Swamp King Dred from the packs, i decided to chuck it into the deck for a test. It turns out that Swamp King Dred is a also pretty neat. Even though the only time i played it, it had died to Brawl the next turn, the dinosaur does have a certain Doomsayer feel to it.

But don’t worry if you do not have Swamp King Dred. Any big beast will fit into the game plan. You can replace with King Krush if you have it, and if all else fails, there’s still that golden Volcanosaur.

The lone Trogg Beastrager is ok. Back when Hunter was going though its identity crisis, playing beasts always gets mixed up with Deathrattle non-beasts. With Dinomancy, the Beast focus is alot sharper and Trogg Beastrager is seldom a vanilla 3/2.

Even though there’s only one Trogg Beastrager, i feel that Dispatch Kodo is a must include in any Hunter deck. With the loss of Quick Shot, Hunter really needs the Kodo for board control.

All in all, the deck has a couple variation options to refine to your playstyle. There’s Unleash the Hounds + Knife Juggler package, King Krush is always good, Black Knight is pretty good in the current meta.

Raptor_Hatchling
Raptor Hatchling is probably the weirdest card in the deck. Is it any better than Alley Cat? Or is Alley Cat better, given the stats that hit the board, Alley Cats have one more health. The way i see it is that Raptor Hatchling works like reverse deck thinning. More like deck bloating, adding one more chance to draw a mid-size Beast in the late game rather than a small 1/1. Admittedly, Raptor Hatchling’s value is a little harder to gauge because its value is mostly intangible.

Plus, the little dinosaur is so cute. Already i’ve passed on playing Ravasaur Runt, there’s no way i’ll pass only playing Raptor Hatchling for a while. Geek Generation out.

Hearthstone: Jade Shaman in Un’Goro

Hello everybody, Geek Generation here.

So i played a little more of Jade Shaman, with a splash of concede decks, Zoolock Discard and Murloc Paladin. Still didn’t get into rank 15. I made some changes along the way, swapping out Harvest Golem for Tar Creeper. Because Tar Creeper is simply that good. I even put it in my Zoolock, i think.

As powerful as Tar Creeper is, It doesn’t do anything in Quest Rogue match ups. In those match ups, the despair is very strong. My only viable play is to hope that the Rogue doesn’t get a streak of bad draws and run out of cards (and minions) after my Lightning Storm.

So i was thinking of replacing both Tar Creepers with two Dirty Rats. I gather from the forums that the Dirty Rats are good against Quest Rogues. The more i think about it, the only thing Dirty Rats are bad against are Giants. But even then, most of the time, i lose to Plant Lock not because of the Giants. It’s usually because of Jaraxxus.

But i have only one Dirty Rat and i’m hesitant to craft anything. There’s so much possible strong choices for dust. There’s the epic elementals for elemental decks, not to mention the Shaman Legendary Elemental. Then there’s the quests. And then there are some neutral legendaries that can go into multiple classes. With the retirement of Sylvannas and Ragnaros, i prolly have enough to craft two legendaries and some epics.

But since i’ve got a quest to play lots of Shaman cards, i think i might go with Dirty Rat. I’ll put my bets on it. Believe in the Dirty Rat.

2 x Earth Shock
2 x Evolve
2 x Flametongue Totem
2 x Jade Claws
2 x Hex
2 x Hot Spring Guardian
2 x Lightning Storm
2 x Mana Tide Totem
2 x Tar Creeper
2 x Jade Lightning
2 x Jade Spirit
2 x Jinyu Waterspeaker
1 x Lotus Agents
1 x Aya Blackpaw
2 x Thing from Below
2 x Jade Chieftain

Class Win Loss
Druid 1 0
Hunter 2 1
Mage 2 1
Paladin 1 0
Priest 1 2
Rogue 2 4
Shaman 2 1
Warlock 3 2
Warrior 0 0
Total

Geek Generation out.

Hearthstone: Streets of Un’Goro, Jade Shaman

Hello everybody, Geek Generation here.

Journey to Un’Goro has been released. The expansion seems to be pretty exciting. Unfortunately, there are so many build around cards in the legendary and epics that if you do not open them, then you don’t get to bathe in that excitement.

I opened all my pre-order packs yesterday, didn’t get a single quest or the important Elemental cards, and end up not playing at all. The dissapointment. Especially so when i’ve logged in to the message that i did not have any standard decks.

I tried Jade Shaman today. The deck seem to have transitioned pretty well. Played a couple games at rank 20, didn’t lose any. Will play more with the deck to see how far it can go.

2 x Earth Shock
2 x Evolve
2 x Flametongue Totem
2 x Jade Claws
2 x Harvest Golem
2 x Hex
2 x Hot Spring Guardian
2 x Lightning Storm
2 x Mana Tide Totem
2 x Jade Lightning
2 x Jade Spirit
2 x Jinyu Waterspeaker
1 x Lotus Agents
1 x Aya Blackpaw
2 x Thing from Below
2 x Jade Chieftain

Hot Spring Guardian and Jinyu Waterspeaker represents an extra 18 health, which is pretty good against most aggro. Double Earth Shock and Devolve helps alot too and reduces the dependence on drawing Hex.

I wanted to play more Lotus Agents for the card advantage. But there didn’t seem to be room in the deck. Plus, i reasoned, Lotus Agents is usually not a 5 drop. More often than not, i would be playing Jinyu on turn 4, overloading for 1 on turn 5. It sets up Jade Lightning for Turn 5 and Aya for Turn 6. Though in a world without Azure Drakes, Jade Lightning on turn 5 is not so critical.

The odd inclusion has to be Harvest Golem. It’s my replacement for Totem Golem. I wanted an early drop to deal with aggression, and i wanted the early drop to have plenty of fight in it. In the games i played, Harvest Golem does a pretty good job of sticking around.

Before i go, i like to say this. Do not underestimate the Adapt mechanic. It is quite a strong mechanic. If you’re building a deck and are looking for some good fighters, don’t forget Volcanosaur. You can hardly go wrong with double Adapts.

Geek Generation out.

Faeria: First Impressions

Hello everybody, Geek Generation here.

I’ve been playing a little bit of Faeria, it coming to Steam and all. In Faeria, each player plays minions to a board of lands that they must build up to both gain influence and walk-able tiles to reduce the opponent to 0 life.

Mana in Faeria is colorless and each player gains three mana every turn. Additional mana can be collected from wells by minions. Every turn, a player can choose to perform one of the actions:
– place 1 influence land onto the board
– or 2 neutral lands (plains) onto the board
– draw a card
– gain 1 mana

To play cards, a player has to meet the influence requirement of that card. For example, if a card has 2 mountain requirement, the player must own 2 mountains on the board and play that minion on the one of the owned mountains.

Land in Faeria not only controls what cards you can play, but also where your minions can spawn and where spawned minions (both yours and opponent’s) can walk.

You can only place lands adjacent to your avatar, or adjacent to existing owned lands, or adjacent to a minion (standing on land you do not own) (you can’t do it with flying/swimming minions that are not standing on any land). So placing of lands does take some strategy. Do you gain influence quickly, fill the board to deny the opponent positions, gain positions?

I’m pretty sure the duality of lands has stumped many a new comers to Faeria who are pretty experienced in other card games. It does take a while to learn the land system.

Another aspect of the game that has stumped me is the mana. In most other games, you gain one mana per turn. With 3 mana a turn, that’s plenty of mana right? But that’s not the case. Often, a 3 mana neutral card is a turn 1 play. So what turns are a card that costs 1 or 2 or 4 or 5 mana? I find that it is important not to underestimate the collection of mana from wells in Faeria.

Another aspect is the balance is more important than tempo. First, a 2 influence card is usually not a turn 2 play for two reasons. First, if you have two influence by turn 2, it usually means you have taken over only 2 spots. Which hinders board development quite significantly. But if you develop the board too quickly, then you’ll lag behind in influence. A balance must be reached for developiong board and influence.

Second, most minions only move only 1 spot a turn. Developing a giant minion near your avatar would likely mean that the minion is only ever going to be used for defence, because it takes forever to reach the opponent by walking 1 spot a turn. If you want an attack, it is better to develop the board and save the giant minion for later.

Ok so much for now, Geek Generation out.