Shake, Rattle and Roll

in #splinterlandslast year

Many new players just trying the game out can be frustrated at first. Chief among the complaints include not having access to a variety of Monsters or not having a leveled up Summoner or high level Monsters. This can be complicated by intimidating battle formats. Many of the tutorials available show Gold level battles with these high ability Monsters. So I wanted to a review a recent battle in a compromising format using only Level 1 Summoner and Monsters. What I would like to focus on is turning the battle format to your advantage. Let's get started:

2020-01-17 (2).png

What we have here is a Bronze Level battle with a 17 mana cap and Earthquake in effect. The only splinters permitted are Death and Fire. For those of you unfamiliar with earthquake, the rule is:

Non-flying Monsters take 2 Melee damage at the end of each round.


Before continuing let's analyze. Many new players find the 2 damage imposed by earthquake to be intimidating. I know i did. Bad enough you have to contend with an opponent. But there are ways of turning that hazard into an advantage. Furthermore, the low mana cap catches players off-guard. Do you load one big powerful Monster who can withstand the 2 damage but absorbs all your mana expense or do you spread it to some smaller Monsters who might be more susceptible to the earthquake effect?

If these are not the questions you are considering you should be!!! These meta game decisions will determine the outcome of the battle.

I'm playing with the Fire Splinter to complete a Daily Quest and my opponent selects Death. As Flying creatures are unaffected by the earthquake penalty, most of my Monsters are flyers. I start with the Cockatrice. With his flying and speed he can usually stall the opponent's first Monster.

In second position I have the Giant Roc. Even at level 1 he brings 1 melee and Flying and Reach. In Third I have the Cerberus. In hindsight I might have considered re-positioning him. Nevertheless even without Flying his Heal capability will allow him to continually restore the Earthquake damage. Enchanted Pixie comes next. Another flyer and with magic delivering true damage I can counter any potential shield on my opponent's team. The Furious Chicken rounds off the team (1) because it is free and should always be added if space allows, and (2) If the opponent has Sneak then this will absorb one hit on the rear guard.

My opponent has opted for higher life count Monsters and Range attack to deal with the battle format. His first position tank Haunted Spirit is a staple of the Death Splinter for first position because of its high life and Heal ability.

2020-01-17 (3).png

His first two attacks, from the Twisted Jester and the Centaur eliminate my rear defense.

2020-01-17 (4).png

The Cockatrice evades attack and the Earthquake evens the playing field by taking out his rear two Monsters.

At this point some of you may be seeing what is going to happen but let's play it out in slow motion for the rest of the class...

2020-01-17 (6).png

The Cockatice survived valiantly to eventually be taken out. The Roc advanced and Cerberus healed. But look at the opponent's hand. Both the Jester and the Centaur were limited to 2 rounds because they were capped at 4 life with no heal ability. So as we enter Round 3, the Spirit has 1 life and is all that remains from the team. For my side I have a full health Roc - impervious to the Earthquake blasts and a Cerberus that will heal itself again.

The end is predictable from this point and I go on for the win.

My point is that I used the Earthquake effect to my advantage like a 6th Monster. Effectively it eliminated 4 of my opponent's 5 Monsters. Individually none of my Monsters were impressive but collectively their Flying and Heal abilities harmonized for the win.

Lessons learned:

  1. Never forfeit a match. See every game as an opportunity to experiment with your Monsters.
  2. Embrace challenging battle formats and find the opportunity to turn those game sets into slim advantages.
  3. Remember to have fun and Play On!!!!

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What an awesome Splinterlands post! I am awful at battling unless they are maxed cards, lol! Thanks for giving these awesome tips for people playing in level 1 and I agree- never forfeit a match! An upvote from Steem Monsters is on the way!
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