Position is key 😃! Analyzing some top player games (mana 19)

in #steemmonsters2 years ago

Personal note: One of my ‘best’ games so far (sadly same strategy, haven’t found a really better deck on lvl1), 21.10.18 Mana 19 lvl1 against lvl6 (partly) https://steemmonsters.com?battle=738df97969c553e6d63af8c3f0a0680c6329e84e&ref=hhh-fan

There are other angles to examining game strategy from. This time I will focus on positioning.

What is important to know about attacking

  • tank, gets most of the damage, attacks the other tank; after first one dead, second position tank and so forth
  • ranged cannot attack when in tank position
  • melee can only attack in tank position unless it has sneak
  • when attack value is 0 (e.g. via weaken) no attack happens either
  • sneak attacks the last position
  • snipe targets someone with Ranged, Magic, or no attack which is not the tank (am not entirely sure if randomly or something like second position preferred; seems to me in a fight it chooses a position and then continues attacking it, so not entirely random)

some minor things which I don’t get into to overly complicate like

  • stunned
  • shield and void (magic evade)
  • magic reflect and retaliate
  • blast and poison
  • thorns and trample
  • piercing and enrage

And above all: Tempo (the blue balls 😃)! But about this in another article.

First game @clove71 (Alric) vs. @imperfect-one (Malric)

Screen Shot 10-21-18 at 11.26 PM.PNG


First I thought cloves positioning of 2-4 is huh or doh 😕 - and I’ll give you the reasons for that immediately - but then looking at the game, I saw for at least this specific game, it was brilliant 😎.

What do we see here on Cloves side?

  • Tank in first row - check
  • Ranged attack+tank healer+protect in second row - huh?
    Instinctively you put range in the last position, which I assumed would have been better in this fight as well, because in the tank position it is lost and you want nearly everything else before it in that position. Here this seems especially clear because the range has also the tank heal + the protect which grants everyone additional armor.
  • Apart from that it is often good to put a higher health and faster (tempo, e.g. the mermaid has here 5, with the slow by the enemy 4) so it can longer withstand and survive or at least make damage before it gets killed in the last position, because sneak is something you regularly see (sometimes double) and sneak attacks your last first.
    Or the other way to explain it is: Put the weak ones in the middle.

So best positioning with these cards for clove I assumed would have been in this fight
Naga Warrior 1
Mischievous Mermaid 2
Enchanted Pixie 3
Crustacean King 4

Why was Cloves better?

  • My assumption - +2 armor of the protect is still there on the others is flawed
  • She chose to protect her highest attack cards, which also have magic - which is more important than the effects of the Crustacean
  • Also her cards focus on one target - the enemy tank - which is straightforward and we’ll see this play a role in the assessment of imperfects positioning which I get to now.

On first examination the positioning of Imperfect seems good so far:

  • Tank first row, ranged in the last positions and
  • because all have high/same value the who is in second row would not have been so important
  • the Goblin which you probably want to protect the slow and weaken of in the middle position
  • Still there would be some things to discuss, e.g. maybe exchange the last two positions because fire demon has higher tempo, higher damage and blast in comparison to the fire beetle and his health is also still high, as well as
  • when the Kobold Miner doesn’t kill the last position he attacks with his sneak before he becomes the new tank, he looks pretty dumb. So, does he get his two or three attacks he needs for this? With the tempo 5 and the stats it looks likely.
  • Also we had said usually the Goblin should be protected.
  • MOST important: The attack focus is very split (unlike Cloves) into tank, 1x sneak and 1x split; that will probably be bad, see the Kobold miner point; attack should focus rather on one or two points. Of course we still have too few cards to make that happen often.

These are just some reflections which show which thought processes you could have to try to improve your team. Also some ‘improvements’ are better against one enemy team and worse against another.

Let’s start watching

Screen Shot 10-22-18 at 12.17 AM.PNG
We see Malric has the tempo advantage 5,5,4,4 against 4,3,3,1 (due to Malrics Goblin)
Screen Shot 10-22-18 at 12.22 AM.PNG
Next we see the situation has changed rapidly due to the enrage of the Naga.
The armor of Mischievous and Naga has been removed by Kobold and Cerberus and the one pity magic by Goblin made the Naga enrage so Cerberus is killed immediately, thus the sneaky Kobold becomes tank (the guessed detriment).
Screen Shot 10-22-18 at 12.26 AM.PNG
But Cerberus’ retaliate did his job well, so Fire Demon killed the Naga and removed two Armor from the Crustacean which is now in the unpleasant position - without having ever healed or attacked and without capability to attack in the future - of the tank.
But! He still has armor; another figure would have completely lost the armor from the blast because the Protect only granted everyone two.

Imagine my proposal:

  • Mischievous would have been there as tank instead now.
  • Okay I did. Lol, first I thought: damn the Kobolds 4 + the Goblins 1 (chance fifty fifty who is first with tempo 4) would have killed Mischievous.
  • AND that is actually true! because Mischievous wouldn’t have had left any armor anymore due to the 2 blast damage by the Fire Demon previously. (besides Crustacean would have had zero armor on the last position as well due to the 4 Melee by Kobold via sneak previously).
  • Also the damage from Crustacean at the end of Round: 1 would have reduced the health of the Kobold only so much he would have had 1 life - if Mischievous makes 5 damage on 3 or 1 life doesn’t matter.
  • So, as said fifty-fifty, one round Mischievous kills the Kobold first, the other the Kobold kills mischievous first.
  • In this specific game my strategy would have lost because the Kobold attacked first (definite loss, no comeback how it may have been possible in this game for Imperfect when the Demon would have been before the Beetle instead of being on the last position, again fifty fifty (or a bit worse due to 2x chance of miss of range) Demon kills Pixie first or Pixie damages beetle first).


  • So, Clove did make the absolutely correct decision to protect her Mischievous Mermaid with the highest attack value (also fast tempo 5) and Imperfect had a bit bad luck because he missed twice with ranged.
  • Also what I alluded to - problem of a worthless sneak attack and positioning of the last two range guys could have mixed up the game a little bit as well.
  • The attacks of Clove were very concentrated (which is true with magic on tank always anyway) and Imperfects attacks one time split up too much probably. Focus on two or one positions (e.g. 2xsneak+2x tank or 2xsnipe +2x tank or only on tank or the one sneak in a very protected position) may have been better.
  • Of course this is easier said as done, as we have too few cards to play every variant. We are still a lot constrained there 😯.

Second game @cyan2017 (Lyanna) vs. @imperfect-one (Selenia)

Screen Shot 10-21-18 at 11.31 PM.PNG

I really love this team of Cyan

  • Nice tank - check
  • Filler card (2 mana) Cocatrice as second tank with dodge flight and little melee to act as second tank
  • Earth elemental with some rounds range but more important as third tank with high health and heal to
  • protect the Goblin which can make constant magic sneak attacks and the higher health swamp with range weaken and slow last, also basically perfect position.
  • This team is definitely dependent on the Goblin.

With this team Imperfect seemed to mess up the Cocatrice.

  • I first thought it would be a definite mess up but then I saw some other fights were the Cocatrice on last position is basically there to protect the guys from the end.
  • My first impression was this low level 5 Cocatrice should definitely been on position 2 instead of 5; and I think for this specific fight would have been better. Because on last place 5 it can definitely not do anything until the last round, is an more or less easy last place killer target and thus also a bad protector from the end for the goblin.
  • Rank 2-5 should have been like with cyan’s team.

Let’s start watching

Screen Shot 10-22-18 at 01.32 AM.PNG
Screen Shot 10-22-18 at 01.33 AM.PNG

  • Here chance played a role again; both Earth Elemental missed its damage (Cyans would have killed the Flesh Golem, Imperfects would have made an exact kill of Stonesplitter which could not have killed now the Flesh Golem)
  • With my proposal for Imperfects position: Swamp on last place with 2 health and Cocatrice with 2 health zero attack on second position; in the way how the fight goes now of course on first position with the same stats)

What would have changed?

  • Cyan would have killed the Swamp on last place instead of Goblin now and the Cocatrice as tank
  • Fifty fity imperfect would have made 4 damage with her Earth on 5 life Stonesplitter (1 life back via the killed Swamp), Cyan kills Cocatrice with Earth
  • Now 6 damage from the Stonespiltter on Imperfects Earth (2 life left), fifty fifty which Goblin kills the other one first
  • Even if imperfect had luck, he still would have lost - I believe - because the tank of Cyan was too strong compared to Imperfects in this situation.
  • Putting the Earth Elemental on last position instead of second (and there the untimely Swamp thing) might have changed something additionally;
  • here with Selenia definitely worth a consideration because she ups the range attack with one; also this is a definite protection from the end due to the heal of the Earth
  • but hard to say if this would be the way to go for other match-ups;
  • seems definitely to be a no for Lyanna who does boost health with one life but not range.

We take a look at another fight imagining this variation (Earth at last position with Selenia); game three

Clove (Malric) against Imperfect (Selenia)
Screen Shot 10-22-18 at 02.29 PM.PNG

  • As said: Imagine Imperfects Earth elemental last position, and Cocatrice second (+ higher level)
  • Cloves positioning looks perfect to me; also double sneak.
  • In this case the Cocatrice would also have died on position two but not with a higher level (3 life) (it would have died with 3 life though on the last position);
  • Earth Elemental 1 life last position (will heal for two, so three life and dead next round sneak attack) and Goblin second from behind can sneak attack.
  • So still a loss but it would have looked a bit better. Maybe the Flesh Golem is too weak of a tank and it is a bad match-up; what is definitely a problem with the team, is the low tempo. Cards fault, not Imperfects.

Game 5, perfect positioning by both

Clove (Malric) vs. Imperfect (Selenia, but now all blue cards)
Screen Shot 10-22-18 at 02.40 PM.PNG

Spineback Turtle is such a strong card and the thorns with 2 damage guaranteed without a retaliate are fascinating too.

Others fights that seemed worth watching

With very short commentary.

@Wombykus (Zintar) vs. @onetin84 (Selenia)
Both use a similar team (just Zintar vs. Selenia) but Onetins positioning looks better.
I think when the Zintar would have had the same positioning like Selenia it would have been close to a fifty-fifty (formally in numbers Zintar destroys one more enemy attack than Selenia adds to attack, so very tiny slight advantage for Zintar).
The problem card is the Screaming Banshee.
A ranged on position 3 of 5 seems weird though anyway, especially with the easy to kill Banshee in front of it.

At first glance both positioning looked like absolute garbage to me but Cloves positioning revealed itself as excellent again!
Interestingly it uses zero the Summoner ability, so it would be a team for 18 mana with the max level Summoner Xia instead of Alric!
Onetin messed up here definitely. Position one and two need to change. And when Crustacean on 5, Pirate Captain needs to be (protected) on 4, especially due to its inspire. Or choose the same as Clove.

Clove with the same team as fight before, again, looks like good or great positioning.
Hersnz has the very questionable positioning of Wombykus vs. Onetin two fights ago.
So no chance with this positioning, with Onetins it may have been with a chance. Definitely it would have looked very different!

Tufkats positioning looks excellent; question is if you wanna exchange Crustacean and Mischievous but probably not! See very first game analysis! (or think of the sneak magic Goblin of the second game of another team who would have killed Crustacean in last position instantly)
Positioning by haziful with Selenia a ranged guy in place two! - this looks like a total waste and we can see it in the fight.

Looks questionable as well.
The Zintar has the previous team with the Banshee, a little change in positioning; Haunted Spider (ranged) on two looks not feasible;
with the other deck I would have put the Cocatrice pretty definitely this time on two instead of five so the Kobold can sneak once more; also I like the range more on five than three (and this range on position three instead of five would nearly have cost the game).

Watch the games yourself with the pause and play button to follow my analyses or make your own.
Hope you have fun and challenge with such detailed observations 😀.


This is awesome! :-) Fire Demon (608px, 5fps).gif

Great observations as positioning is truly the most import factor in my opinion due to how the speed and attacking work. Great analysis that is really useful for players to review. Thanks for sharing!

Very cool!

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