Posts Tagged ‘Affiliation’

Greetings Fellow Dice Fans!

 

For this week’s confusing card of the week article, we’re going to take a look at Hawkgirl: Princess of Thanagar from the DC Batman set.

W Hawkgirl, Princess of Thanagar

Ruling – Ability

Hawkgirl has multiple parts to her ability. The first part of Hawkgirl’s ability is a While Active ability. A While Active ability is one that works regardless of how many of the character’s dice are in the Field Zone. While Active abilities are like a light – it’s either on, or it’s off.

while-active-light

The second part of Hawkgirl’s ability will only apply to characters that are not Villains, and only when they attack. While Hawkgirl is active, when a non-Villain character die attacks (yours or your opponent’s), you may to spin that character die up one level.

This is an optional ability because it says may. This means you do not have to spin your opponent’s non-Villain character die up a level, but you could if you wanted to.

Hawkgirl does not have to attack for you to use her ability on other characters. So long as she’s active, and the attacking character is not a Villain, you can spin that die up one level. You can spin Hawkgirl dice up one level when they attack because her ability says non-Villain character dice, and she’s not a Villain.

If you can remove the Villain affiliation (Ra’s al Ghul Global), you must do so before you attack. Once the character is already assigned to attack, the window to use Hawkgirl’s ability has passed.

Miscellaneous Card Information

~ Hawkgirl is a Mask type character card.
~ She has the Justice League affiliation.
~ She has a max dice of four.
~ This card is a Rare and is #96 of 124.

Examples

These examples are for information purposes only, to show what would happen in certain scenarios. I am not suggesting that these examples are the best outcomes for each scenario and each example only features relevant parts of the turn, not the entire turn.

Example One:
How Hawkgirl’s ability triggers.

Game State
~
I have one level two Hawkgirl die, one level two Conner Kent: Project Cadmus (3A/3D) dice, and one level one Krypto: Super Dog (2A/2D) die in the Field Zone.
~ It’s the beginning of my Attack Step.
(Attack Step – Assign Attackers)
~ I assign Conner Kent and Krypto to attack, moving them into the Attack Zone.
~ Hawgirl’s ability will trigger and check both dice for the Villain affiliation. Since neither of them are Villains, I may spin each die up one level. Conner Kent spins to level three (5A/5D) and Krypto spins to level two (3A/3D).
~ The rest of the turn proceeds as normal.

Example Two:
Removing the Villain affiliation before attacking.

Game State
~
I have one level two Hawkgirl die, one level two Conner Kent: Project Cadmus (3A/3D) dice, and one level one The Riddler: Prince of Puzzles (1A/5D) die in the Field Zone.
~ I also have one Mask energy in my Reserve Pool and Ra’s al Ghul: Mystery and Power is on my team, but he is not active.
~ It’s during my Main Step.
(Main Step)
~ I spend the Mask, moving it Out of Play, to pay for Ra’s al Ghul’s Global and target my Riddler die. His Villain affiliation is now gone until the end of turn.
~ I pass priority to my opponent and they do not use any Globals. They pass priority back and we move into the Attack Step.
(Attack Step – Assign Attackers)
~ I assign Conner Kent and The Riddler to attack, moving them into the Attack Zone.
~ Hawgirl’s ability will trigger and check both dice for the Villain affiliation. Since neither of them are Villains, they will each get to spin up one level. Conner Kent spins to level three (5A/5D) and The Riddler spins to level two (2A/6D).
~ The Riddler’s ability will also trigger and his attack and defense values are now swapped, making him a 6A and 2D.
~ The rest of the turn proceeds as normal.

Official Sources

WizKids Official Rules Forum (WORF)
You can find a relevant ruling that applies to the wording of Hawkgirl’s ability, here.

Basic Information

You can find more info about specific Keywords on the WizKids Keywords page.

Turn Order Summary Reference

turn-order

Opinion and Strategy

What I wouldn’t have given to have this card with my Colossus during the WKO this year in Owensboro! Using her and Blink – Transmutation with Colossus is like a dream team, and that also makes room for a different BAC in place of Polymorph/Mutation. I love Mutation, but there were other BACs I could have used for that particular event.

In a draft, this card is a beast! Using her with Batgirl + Ace, Conner Kent, The Riddler or any other beefy attacker is great, but she is a rare. The chances of getting her are not high, but if you open her, take her and build around her!

For Modern Age, I think she has some potential, especially with the aggressive teams that are shaping the current meta. She’s definitely affordable at a cost of three, and she’s a Mask character which she should fit nicely on some of those more aggressive Mask Ring teams. Her TFC of two isn’t bad at all, and her attack and defense stats are about what you’d expect. She’s a really good card to consider for a competitive team.

I really like her for casual play too. She’s not too overpowered and she’s got stats that are appropriate. She also has the Justice League affiliation which means she can beef up those Golden Age JL teams!

Opinions on this card? Leave a comment!
Is there a card your confused on?

Is there a combo that seems too good to be true?
Leave me a comment here or message me on Facebook at Dice Dice Kitty and thanks for reading!

Special thanks to The Reserve Pool for the use of their site.

Roll on, Dice Masters!

Greetings Fellow Dice Fans!


For this week’s confusing card of the week article, we’re going to take a look at Donatello: Intellectually Inclined  from the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: Heroes in a Half Shell box set.

I’ve now included an updated Rating System that covers all the competitive formats – Golden Age, Modern Age, and Prime. While Golden Age is not going to be a highly supported format in the official WizKids scenes, I imagine many areas will continue using it as their competitive format. Casual will remain different because casual players usually look at cards differently and I rate them on their ease of use more than playability.

w-07-donatello-intellectually-inclined

Ruling – Ability

Donatello has a When Attacks ability. These type of abilities trigger for each of those character’s dice that attack. Donatello’s ability has a cost associated with it. You must pay this cost at the time his dice are assigned to attack. You must also pay for each die that attacks that you want to use the ability on. You may only pay for each attacking die’s ability one time.

When Donatello attacks, you may pay a Bolt energy to deal two damage directly to your opponent or a target character die. This ability targets and can be redirected, reduced, or negated with other abilities or effects that affect damage.

Using this ability is optional. If you do not pay for the ability when the die is assigned to attack, you cannot go back to pay for it later. For example, if you attack and don’t pay the Bolt energy to use his ability and you move into the Assign Blockers portion of the Attack Step, you cannot pay the Bolt energy for his ability.

If Donatello is KO’d or removed from the Field Zone during the Action and Global portion of the Attack Step, it will not affect the damage that was done with his ability because it’s already resolved.

Miscellaneous Card Information

~ Donatello is a Bolt Character.
~ He has the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtle affiliation.
~ He has a max dice of three.
~ This card is a Common and is #7 of 58.

If you purchase either of the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles Box Sets, you will have one copy of each card in the entire set, as well as the maximum number of dice for each card.

Examples

These examples are for information purposes only, to show what would happen in certain scenarios. I am not suggesting that these examples are the best outcomes for each scenario and each example only features relevant parts of the turn, not the entire turn.

Example One:
Attacking with one Donatello die.

~ I have one level one Donatello die and two Bolt energy in my Reserve Pool.
~ (Attack Step – Assign Attackers) I assign my Donatello die to attack by moving it into the Attack Zone. I choose to use his ability by paying a Bolt energy (placing it Out of Play). I choose to target my opponent because they do not have any characters in the Field Zone. My opponent takes two damage.
~ The rest of the Attack Step continues as normal.

Example Two:
Attacking with multiple Donatello dice.

~ I have three level one Donatello die and three Bolt energy in my Reserve Pool.
~ (Attack Step – Assign Attackers) I tell my opponent that I  am going to assign each of my Donatello dice to attack, but I do it one at a time so that I can resolve each of their abilities as they are assigned to attack.
– I assign the first die to attack, pay a Bolt energy (placing it Out of Play), and deal two damage to my opponent.
– I assign the second die to attack, pay a Bolt energy (placing it Out of Play), and deal two damage to my opponent.
– I assign the third die to attack, pay a Bolt energy (placing it Out of Play), and deal two damage to my opponent. The total amount of damage done to my opponent is six.
~ The rest of the Attack Step continues as normal.

Example Three:
Attacking with Donatello that gets KO’d after attacking.

~ I have one level three Donatello die and two Bolt energy in my Reserve Pool. My opponent has a Captain Cold’s Cold Gun: Frozen “Firearm” on a burst side in the Field Zone.
~ (Attack Step – Assign Attackers) I assign my Donatello die to attack by moving it into the Attack Zone. I choose to use his ability by paying a Bolt energy (placing it Out of Play). I choose to target my opponent because they do not have any characters in the Field Zone. My opponent takes two damage.
~  (Attack Step – Assign Blockers) My opponent doesn’t assign any blockers.
~ (Attack Step – Actions and Globals) I do not use any Actions or Globals and pass priority to my opponent. My opponent decides to activate their Cold Gun die. They target my Donatello die, dealing him three damage and it blanks the text from the die until the end of turn.
~ (Attack Step – Assign and Resolve Damage) I assign Donatello’s five damage to my opponent.
~ The rest of the turn continues as normal.

Official Sources

WizKids Official Rules Forum (WORF) does not have a ruling for this specific card.

Turn Order Summary Reference

turn-order

Golden Age Rating

The only reason I think this card might have a use is because of Iceman: Too Cool for Words. You could use all three Donatello dice to attack with and with Iceman, almost always have the right energy for his abilities. But that’s only if someone didn’t want to use Cheetah: Cursed Archaeologist for some reason or another. I unfortunately don’t think Donnie is gonna see any kind of competitive Golden Age play.

Donatello: Intellectually Inclined gets a rating of one out of five stars.
1 Star

Modern Age Rating

Without Cheetah in the format, Donnie should be the dude, right? I don’t think so. It pains me to say it, but I think a five cost character with a When Attacks ability that you have to pay for is too much even for Modern. While Modern is a slower format, there are still brighter stars in the sky.

Donatello: Intellectually Inclined gets a rating of one out of five stars.1 Star


Prime Rating

I think Prime is the place that Donnie has the best chance to make an appearance, as far as competitive scenes go. I still don’t think anyone is going to try to do too much with him though. His cost is still high for his ability, but he’s not completely bad. There could be a rogue team that surfaces with him on it, but I don’t think it’s likely.

Donatello: Intellectually Inclined gets a rating of two out of five stars.
2 Stars

Casual Play Rating

The major issue with Donnie is that some players aren’t sure about how many times they can pay to activate his ability. Once it’s explained that you can only pay for it once for each of his dice, it’s a little more easy to understand and use. I really like this card for casual play because it is very easy to explain to new players and not difficult to use. Donnie’s ability isn’t too shabby either for a beginner or casual player. I could easily recommend this card for any player of any skill level.

Donatello: Intellectually Inclined gets a rating of four out of five stars.
4 Stars

Opinions on this card? Leave a comment!

Is there a card your confused on?
Is there a combo that seems too good to be true?
Leave me a comment here or message me on Facebook at Dice Dice Kitty and thanks for reading!

Special thanks to The Reserve Pool for the use of their site.

Roll on, Dice Masters!

Greetings Fellow Dice Fans!

This is the corrected article. Thanks to Michaela for making me think about my original ruling and dig a little deeper!

For this week’s confusing card of the week article, we’re going to take a look at Howard Stark: Expert Businessman  from the Marvel Iron Man and War Machine Starter set.

w-02-howard-stark-expert-businessman

Ruling – Ally

Ally is a keyword that means the character will count as a Sidekick in addition to any other type that it currently has, but only while the character is active in the Field Zone. A character with the Ally keyword does not count as a Sidekick in the bag, Prep Area, Reserve Pool, etc.

A character with Ally will become a Sidekick the very moment that it enters the Field Zone. This is not an optional keyword and you cannot trigger it because it applies the instant the character is fielded. This matters specifically for abilities like the one on Punisher: War Journal.

Ruling – Ability

Howard Stark’s ability is definitely a interesting one. You can only use it at the beginning of your turn, before you start your Clear and Draw Step. You can sacrifice a Howard Stark die to give the characters your active characters that you control a +2A for the rest of the turn. You may sacrifice any number of Howard Stark dice and each will give a +2A, but you must do it before your Clear and Draw Step. This ability is optional to use. If you start your Clear and Draw Step and didn’t sacrifice a Howard Stark die first, you cannot back up because you missed the timing window for his ability.

When you sacrifice a character die, that die goes Out of Play until the Clean Up Step where it then goes to the Used Pile. When a die is Out of Play, game effects cannot affect those dice. Examples – Professor X: Recruiting Young Mutants Global cannot be used on Sidekicks Out of Play and Reclaim cannot be used to get a Howard Stark die into the Prep Area on the same turn it was sacrificed.

The buff that Howard Stark’s effect gives affects all characters you have active in the Field Zone at the time you sacrifice his die. Each of his dice that you sacrifice will give your active characters a +2A. If you sacrifice two Howard Stark dice, you characters that are in the Field Zone will get a +4A until the end of your turn. This type of ability is an applied bonus.

Miscellaneous Card Information

~ Howard Stark is a Mask Character.
~ He has the S.H.I.E.L.D. affiliation.
~ He has a max dice of four.
~ This card is a Common and is #2 of 34.

If you purchase the Iron Man and War Machine starter set, you will get all the cards, but not maximum dice for each character. You will need two starters for maximum character dice because those dice are not available in any other set.

Examples

These examples are for information purposes only, to show what would happen in certain scenarios. I am not suggesting that these examples are the best outcomes for each scenario and each example only features relevant parts of the turn, not the entire turn.

Example One:
Sacrificing more than one Howard Stark.

~ I have two level one Howard Stark dice and three Sidekick dice in the Field Zone.
~ I begin my turn by sacrificing one of my Howard Stark dice. This will give my three Sidekick dice a +2A until end of turn. I sacrifice my second Howard Stark die, giving my Sidekick dice an additional +2A for a total of +4A until end of turn.
~ (Clear and Draw Step) I clear any dice remaining in my Reserve Pool from the previous turn and draw four dice from my bag. Any character dice that I draw, roll, and field, will not get the +4A buff.

Official Sources

WizKids Official Rules Forum (WORF) does not have a ruling for this specific card.

You can find an Ally ruling in the Punisher: War Journal ruling, and many other rulings, here.

You can find a ruling about Sacrifice, here.

Turn Order Summary Reference

turn-order

Unlimited Competitive Play Rating

While I think this card is quite good, I don’t see anyone playing it unless Bard gets an errata or somehow makes the banned list (not likely). He costs one less than Bard, but you have to sacrifice him for his ability. Someone like me would try to use Stark in a major event, but I don’t see him making many team lists out there. There are better options for his type of ability – the big one being Bard. He does have the advantage of getting around Cold Guns though, so he’s not a card I’d forget about anytime soon just on the chance that we see a WizKids rotation that hits Bard.

Howard Stark: Expert Businessman gets a rating of one out of five stars.
1 Star

Prime Play Rating

I think this card is great for Prime, but I don’t expect a lot of folks to play him if they aren’t using Overcrush. He’s got great fielding costs, especially since you may be sacrificing him! But if you’re using Reclaim, he could easily be churned many times over for some pretty devastating results. Just remember that you don’t want a Reclaim die the same turn you sacrifice him, because he’ll be Out of Play on the turn he’s sacrificed. I have the perfect place for this card on my Grodd team and I can’t wait to try him out.

Howard Stark: Expert Businessman gets a Prime rating of three out of five stars.
3 Stars

Casual Play Rating

Howard Stark’s ability is absolutely confusing. I’m not sure why I thought it was a static type bonus, but he had all of us here confused. Thankfully, Michaela mentioned that it might be applied and not static, which got me to thinking and digging deeper. Glad she said something! So, Stark is lucky I don’t knock him down to a three for causing so much confusion. The needed knowledge for sacrifice can be obtained easily if the player is looking for it. Some new players may confuse sacrificing for KO’ing, but once they know the difference, it’s not usually an issue. Lots of players forget or don’t know that sacrificed characters go Out of Play instead of the directly to the Used Pile. It’s a common mistake among players of all skill levels. I can still easily recommend Howard Stark for players of all skill levels, even with his earlier confusion. He’s a great card, and he offers a great way to showcase the rarely used game mechanic, sacrifice.

Howard Stark: Expert Businessman gets a casual play rating of four out of five stars.
4 Stars

Mistakes Were Made!

And this goes to show everyone – I absolutely do make mistakes. I’m definitely not perfect and for all my understanding of the game, this one card tripped me up today. I’m a one person operation here, but I will usually consult with Mr. DDK and a few of the other locals that are more competitive for their opinions, just to be sure I’ve got my interpretation right. Very rarely do we have this issue, but Howard Stark had all of us fooled today! But I’m still so glad I picked him for the Confusing Card of the Week. Never be afraid to question things you think may not be accurate. You could save someone a world of problems, like Michaela did for me today! And don’t be ashamed or embarrassed by a mistake. Admit the mistake, pick yourself up, and roll on!

Opinions on this card? Leave a comment!
Is there a card your confused on?
Is there a combo that seems too good to be true?
Leave me a comment here or message me on Facebook at Dice Dice Kitty and thanks for reading!

Special thanks to The Reserve Pool for the use of their site.

Roll on, Dice Masters!

Greetings Fellow Dice Fans!

 

WizKids has decided to make starters an annual release instead of releasing them with each gravity feed (I can’t tell you how happy my wallet is right now!). I feel like this is a really good move on their part because it makes it easier to format a rotation and also makes it easier and more affordable for new players to enter into the game. To my understanding, Marvel and DC will each have an annual starter release.

banner

You can find my review video on YouTube, here.

Starter Box

starter

Box Contents

~ Iron Man and War Machine Rulebook
~ 2 Dice Bags
~ 12 Basic Action Dice
~ 16 Sidekick Dice
~ 16 Character Dice
~ 24 Character Cards
~ 10 Basic Action Cards
~ 4 Action Reminder Cards
~ 1 Rules Reminder Card

Rulebook

Standard rulebook, but it does not detail the first turn rule change. WizKids had already announced that the earliest rulebook to detail that change would be the DC Superman/Wonder Woman starter rulebook.

rulebook-cover

Rules Reminder Card

imwm-rules-insert

The rules reminder card is a great quick reference tool for all the affiliations and keywords in the set.rules-insert-back

The back of the rules reminder card has a bump for tournaments, which is a great promo piece.

Keywords

There are several returning keywords in this set, as well as a new one.

Returning Keywords:
Ally
Continuous
Fast
Iron Will
Overcrush

New Keywords:

Suit Up – NAME
Suit Up is a new keyword ability in this starter. Each character with Suit Up has the name of another character or characters directly after it. When you purchase a character die with Suit Up, you may KO the named die in order to field the Suit Up die at level two.

Suit Up can only happen when you purchase the Suit Up character die. It replaces the location of where the purchased die will go. If you purchase the die and place it into your Used Pile and continue with your turn, you will not be able to back up to use Suit Up.

I really like Suit Up because it lets you field that character die at level two, even though you have to KO another (specific) character to do it. This ability can be particularly useful with characters that have a When Fielded or When KO’d ability, like Pepper Potts: Stark International for Rescue’s Suit Up.

WizKids has a comprehensive list of Keywords on their site. You can also find expanded descriptions for all the keywords on The Reserve Pool‘s site.

Affiliations

New!
Stark Industries

Returning

Avengers
S.H.I.E.L.D.
Spider-Friends

Characters

howard-stark

So… I like all three of Howard Stark’s cards. I can think of several teams that each one could find a home on. Brilliant is definitely going to find a home on my casual version of Hugs that I played at the WKO. I can easily take La Jinn off the casual team build and put Howard Stark in his place. I guess Iron Will is a good benefit too, I just haven’t seen it used much. I love Expert Businessman for any of my Overcrush teams (and I have several). Father is great for any Sidekick/Ally based team because he can’t be the target of Globals on his burst side. They’re all fairly good in their own way and I’m sure folks can find at least one of these that they like. I want to throw a reminder out there for sacrifice – A sacrificed character will go to the Used Pile and not the Prep Area. I’m sure folks can find a way to use this to their advantage, but it’s something to keep in mind when playing Brilliant or Expert Businessman. They also require that you do it at the start of you turn, which is a specific timing and reduces the amount of shenanigans, but they’re still really good cards. Howard Stark could also find a place on a S.H.I.E.L.D. team. His costs are low and he’s a Mask character too. There are plenty of uses for Mask energy, even in Prime.

hulkbuster-iron-man
Rocket Powered Punches is really the only one of the Hulkbuster Iron Man cards that I like. I’m sure there are plenty of folks that like Model 36 for his ability to barrel through those cost six or higher characters, and Bustin’ Makes Me Feel Good’s ability to gain life from KO’ing a six or higher cost character die, but those are not my style. I prefer to Suit Up a cheap Iron Man into Rocket Powered Punches. It could really throw off your opponent’s game if they aren’t expecting it! I don’t think these cards are going to see much play in unlimited, but depending on the pilot, we might see some make an appearance into Prime.

iron-manor

Celestial Slayer is definitely my favorite of the three because it’s got the ability and Global of the other two versions in one card, but it rightfully cost one more to purchase. If you like just the ability or just the Global, you could get one of the other two for one less on the purchase cost. To use the Global, you don’t really need to purchase the die, so what would hurt to use Celestial Slayer instead of Earth X? I love cost reducers of all kinds, and the fielding cost on some of the Stark Industries dudes are kinda high. Spinning one dude down to decrease that fielding cost could be the difference between some wasted energy and being able to buy a cheaper dude. One energy can make a difference. I’m a little excited for future Marvel sets to see what new Stark Industries characters we get! You could definitely build a solid, casual Stark Industries team just form this starter, but the prospect of improvements is always exciting.

iron-spider

I like Version 2.0 because he’s a cheap Stark Industries character. Waldoes is too, but I’m not sure his Suit Up is all that useful. Spider-Man: “Public Menace!” is the only Spider-Man I can think of to use with Iron Spider: Waldoes. You could always use Iron Spider for itself. I’m not sure I like Waldoes at all. Hopefully we’ll end up with a better Spider-Man in the future that we could pair with him. For a Stark Industries team, I’d much rather use Version 2.0 though. Too Cool For Words, not Iceman, looks fun but he may be a little harder to maneuver as a four cost on a Stark Industries team. If there were other two or three cost Stark Industries characters, other than Rescue, I would definitely consider Too Cool For Words instead of Version 2.0. All of these Stark Industries characters make me excited to try this theme team out! Worth noting, Iron Spider is the name of this card, but the one in the Amazing Spider-Man set is Iron Spidey. That means you could use both, but Iron Spidey will not work for Suit Up.

jarvis
Oh my! An Avengers Ally!!! This could be rather useful. I really like all of Jarvis’s cards, but Chief of Staff is probably my favorite, even with a purchase cost of five. I think he needed to be expensive though, because it’s not too hard to field a bunch of zero-low fielding cost characters and then drag the game out because you just gained a bazillion life. I’m glad his purchase cost is five, and it doesn’t mean he isn’t viable in certain formats, just that he’s got the right cost for his ability. I really like that Butler has that Global that we saw on Iron Manor, but if you’re using Jarvis with Avengers, it’s not going to be all that useful. I guess that’s why he has that direct damage ability on him that does ability damage to a character die equal to the number of character dice you fielded that turn – and it counts Jarvis, so you’re doing at least one damage. I think I like Loyal Confidant and Chief of Staff equally. It just depends on the team, really.

rescue
Mark 1616 is perfect if you need a cheap Stark Industries character, but she only has a max dice of two. Resilient and Catching a Jet are both awesome for using their Suit Up abilities with their other card abilities. You purchase a Rescue, KO a Rescue in the Field Zone (sending it to the Prep Area), and then field the purchased Rescue at level two. Next turn, I get to roll that Rescue that I just KO’d and hopefully get to use her other ability. I really like Resilient more than Catching a Jet, but they each have their place. I would likely use Resilient on Stark Industries team, or almost any Prime team. Her ability works whether she’s active or not… How good is that?! It’s similar to Rescue: Stark’s Equal from the Civil War set, just hurting and not healing. Too bad you can’t use both on one team.

space-armor-iron-man
Model 5 is a cheaper Suit Up character with the Stark Industries affiliation. No other frills, just Suit Up. He’s okay, but I like Deep Space and #14-C much more! I can’t decide which one I like better. I guess Deep Space would be my pick if I didn’t want to add a six cost character to my team, and he’s got some potential for life gain. #14-C has that possible KO avoidance and Overcrush on two sides.Such tough decisions with Space Armor Iron Man!!! I like two too many!

war-machine
And yet another dilemma. I like all three of War Machine’s cards. I like Model II because he’s the cheapest and has Fast. I like “Rhodey” because he also has Fast, he has the additional ability to do direct damage to my opponent if he KO’s a character with combat damage, and he only costs one more to purchase. There are plenty of ways to boost an attack stat in Dice Masters, making this guy pretty good. I’d likely pick him over Model II, unless I just couldn’t put a four cost character on my team… But honestly – I usually have room for four cost characters. I also really like JRXL-1000, and not for his Suit Up. He’s Fast, and Sidekicks can’t block his level one side. You can always boost that attack stat to do more damage, and he only costs four to purchase.

Character Thoughts

I like lots of these characters, especially for a more casual setting. I think these are great characters for a new player to start with and build off of. There are lots of fun gimmicks and different types of abilities that make the game interesting. I think any player could enjoy building and using a Stark Industries team for any fun local event.

On the more competitive end, I think one or two characters might squeak into the unlimited and Prime formats, but overall, not many are going to find a place in the most competitive metas at this time.

I would still recommend purchasing at least one of these starters for some fun characters to build teams with. For a new player, I definitely recommend the starter for the characters, or even two starters for the max dice.

Basic Action Cards

This starter has some really interesting Basic Action Cards that are new to the starter, and it has some revamps of older Basic Actions Cards. If the characters weren’t enough to prove this starter is worth buying, hopefully these Actions will!

w-armor-wars-bac

I’m not a fan of this card. Suit Up is too new and there are only ten cards with the keyword. I guess if you were playing in a semi-limited type format where players were supposed to use Iron Man and War Machine cards, then I could see someone possibly using it. This card is likely not going to be in the unlimited major meta or even Prime, unless Rescue finds a place, which I doubt too. One thing that I do like about this card is that it causes loss of life and not damage. That’s typically a big deal because you can’t effectively redirect or avoid it. Life loss is a mechanic you would need life gain to overcome.

w-cone-of-cold-bac

Cone of Cold from Battle for Faerûn has been revamped! It needed it too. They updated the wording and for those that didn’t want Dungeons and Dragons Dice Masters, they now have access to this BAC. It’s a great way to spread the damage around, but if your opponent only has one character die and you have two, your dice are getting blasted too – unless that’s what you want. I like that both Cone of Cold cards say that you can’t use that action if there aren’t at least three character dice in the Field Zone. I like that Global for teams that use a force block ability as well. Overall, I like this card for both the Action and the Global. The revamping of the wording makes it much easier for newer players to understand.

w-hypervelocity-bac

Wow! What?! This card is so crazy. This Action Die hangs out in the Field Zone and slowly depletes each player’s life if they don’t attack. Hypervelocity causes loss of life and not damage, which is a great way to get damage across with minimal resistance. You have to keep an aggressive streak or you’ll start to lose life as well! It looks like action removal is going to be a major addition to many teams, because unless this is on one of the two burst sides, it’s not leaving! There isn’t a ton of action hate in Prime – if any… so watch out for this in Prime. Folks may be adding some life gain cards to their team to help balance that loss of life.

w-one-against-many-bac

Here is yet another great direct damage card. This card is ability damage and not loss of life, so any abilities to reduce, alter, redirect, etc are viable for folks to use against this ability. I still really like this card for some of the Prime Storm: Extra Lightning teams floating around. It’s not a huge deal if your opponent doesn’t field many characters because it’s still going to do a minimum of two damage. It’s a little expensive to purchase against a team that doesn’t look like it’s going to be putting dudes in the Field Zone though.

w-smash-bac

Here we have a revamp of Smash! from AvX. They have updated the wording on this card as well. I love seeing these older BACs being revamped. This makes them available for Prime, and also more easily accessible for new players. I’m not big on using Smash! for the action, but the Global is great against Overcrush. If Turtle Van isn’t your style, you can always go for Smash! if Overcrush is a problem you’re running into.

w-suprise-attack-bac

This is a revamp of Surprise Attack from Age of Ultron. This is another card with updated wording that definitely reads better than it’s AoU version. I haven’t used this card a lot in the past (if at all…), and I guess this is an okay BAC, but there are definitely better ones out there. I’m still not a fan of this particular card, but even so, glad they revamped it for newer players!

Upgrade BACs

The last four BACs in the starter are all called Upgrades and each have a specialization. They all cost two energy and they each have a risk/reward for using them on specific energy type characters. I like this idea a lot and I can’t wait to try some of these on some Prime teams! These also make for great limited additions when you can’t decide what to use and you don’t want to bring Power Bolt because your opponent may want to buy it too. I also really like that they called them all Upgrade – Specialization. That leaves room for them to make different BACs that have a name like Smokescreen that’s different from Upgrade – Smokescreen.

w-upgrade-fortification-bac

Upgrade – Fortification
The name sounds stout and sturdy, like a character with Iron Will. When you use this action, your character will gain Iron Will. The risk to doing this is that you will lose two life if that character is not a Shield energy type. It’s a risk vs reward type of card, so if you want your Gorilla Grodd to have Iron Will, it’ll cost you two life. And since it’s loss of life, you can’t get around it as easily without life gain. I like this Upgrade because you don’t typically see Iron Will on any team. There are several characters with Iron Will, but they just aren’t worth playing in a competitive meta. I think this Basic Action may make Iron Will a more usable keyword.

w-upgrade-proton-cannon-bac

Upgrade – Proton Cannon
Wow, that sounds like it could shoot thru anything, like a character with Overcrush. This Upgrade will give one of your characters Overcrush, but if they aren’t a Fist type character, they get KO’d at the end of the turn. This is another risk vs reward, but for certain teams, that risk may actually be the reward. I think Lady Bullseye: Attack on Two Fronts just got a a Proton Cannon attached to her.

w-upgrade-smokescreen-bac

Upgrade – Smokescreen
This Upgrade sounds like something a ninja would use to sneak away or sneak around a bunch of folks. When you use Smokescreen on a character die, that die gets +1A. If it’s a Mask type character die, it can’t be blocked. So there isn’t a risk on this Upgrade because you get the +1A no matter what. You benefit more if it’s a Mask type character die that you use it on. I can think of a few Mask type characters that would great to pair this with.

w-upgrade-unibeam-bac

Upgrade – Unibeam
And lastly, the Unibeam. It sounds like something a character would use on a more focused attack, maybe to take someone out before they had a chance to do anything to them. When you use Unibeam on a character die, it gets +2A – not too shabby for a two cost action. But if that character die is a Bolt type, it gains the Fast keyword. That sounds about right for a Unibeam! So like Smokescreen, no real risk, just an even better reward for using it with a Bolt type character die.

BAC Overview

There are quite a few new BACs that I really like, mainly the Upgrades, but a few others too. I like the assortment of abilities on the BACs, and I’m really digging the increased use of loss of life instead of just throwing damage in there. With the increase in abilities that use loss of life or paying life mechanics, we might actually see an increase in the use of cards that have life gain. Hypervelocity is definitely my favorite of all the Basic Action Cards and I can’t wait to start building around it!

Action Reminder Cards

action-reminder-cards

There’s nothing super special about the reminder cards. They’re Cyan, Orange, Pink, and Gray.

Dice Bags

bags

I most definitely like the artwork bags more than the plain colored bags. I like to collect these bags too.

Starter Dice

Sidekick and Action Dice

sidekick-and-action-dice
You get a pretty standard assortment of Sidekick Dice and Action Dice.

Character Dice

You only get two of each character die in the starter. If you’re wanting to put three or four dice on a particular character, you will need to buy a second starter (or trade, exchange, etc.). It’s never a bad thing to have duplicates of the character cards and BACs.

character-dice

Final Thoughts

The only negative thing I have to discuss about the starter is the number of character dice. I’m not sure if WizKids is entertaining other options or not, but I would like to see this changed in the future. I would be okay with certain characters only having a max dice of two while most of them have a max dice of four, and then changing the packaging to accommodate the extra dice. The TMNT characters have a max dice of three… but a box big enough to hold more than four of each. I’d pay five more dollars just to get max dice with my characters. If Mr. DDK and I both want to use Howard Stark with max dice, we will have to buy four starters… Maybe releasing the starters in the big box format, like the TMNT boxes, would be a solution to the max dice issue because they would have plenty of room for the dice. They could keep a lot of the characters as a max dice of four, and reduce some of the more expensive characters to max of two and put the max dice for each character in the box. I have never found a moment that I wished I had three Splinter, Shredder, or Krang dice… they could have easily been a max of two to allow for a fourth die on the cheaper dudes, like the Foot Ninjas. Maybe this is something WizKids can look into doing? I’d rather buy two big box releases, like TMNT, than four starters to accommodate two players.

I really do like the starter contents though. I like how fun and easy the characters are to use and understand. I love the new and revamped BACs. I really hope they continue to make different ‘Upgrade’ styled cards for BACs. Those fit very thematically in the starter and all of them have fun and interesting abilities, especially for a draft team! I love the idea of a Stark Industries themed team and can’t wait to build it and play it – after I buy a second starter for the additional dice I need. I like the Suit Up ability too, but I hope they continue it and add more of the needed characters with abilities that will have better synergy. It’s still a fun and unique ability to play around with and I plan to use Rescue and her Suit Up in my Stark Industries team.

This is a great starting place for a new player. You can add a Team Pack to the starter and roll with it!

What are your favorite cards?
What cards do you think will make it into the unlimited or Prime metas?
Leave me a comment here or message me on Facebook at Dice Dice Kitty and thanks for reading!

Special thanks to WizKids and The Reserve Pool for the use of their sites.

Roll on, Dice Masters!

 

Greetings Fellow Dice Fans!

 

For this week’s confusing card of the week article, we’re going to take a look at the Renet Tilley: 79th Dimension of Null-Time from the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: Heroes in a Half Shell box set.

w-35-renet-tillet-79th-dimension-of-null-time

Ruling – Ability

Renet Tilley has a While Active ability. A While Active ability is one that works regardless of how many of the character’s dice are in the Field Zone. While Active abilities are like a light – it’s either on, or it’s off.

while-active-light

Renet Tilley’s ability lets you spin an action die that’s on an action face to any other side, but only right after you complete your Roll and Reroll Step and before you begin your Main Step. The action die must be on a non-energy face for you to be able to use her ability for that die. You can spin the die to any energy face or any action face.

Miscellaneous Card Information

~ Renet Tilley is a Bolt Character.
~ She does not have an affiliation.
~ She has a max dice of three.
~ This card is a Common and is #35 of 58.

If you purchase either of the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles Box Sets, you will have one copy of each card in the entire set, as well as the maximum number of dice for each card.

Examples

These examples are for information purposes only, to show what would happen in certain scenarios. I am not suggesting that these examples are the best outcomes for each scenario and each example only features relevant parts of the turn, not the entire turn.

Example One:
Using Renet Tilley for one Action Die.

~ I have one level one Renet Tilley in the Field Zone.
~ (Clear and Draw Step) I draw four dice from my bag. I draw two Captain Cold’s Cold Gun action dice and two Sidekick dice.
~ (Roll and Reroll Step) I roll my four dice and they land on two Wild energy, one Cold Gun on an action face with no bursts, and one Cold Gun showing its single generic energy side. I choose to reroll the Cold Gun on the energy face and it lands on the same single generic energy face.
~ (Roll and Reroll Step) If I want to use Renet Tilley, I must do so now before I begin my Main Step. I choose to spin my Cold Gun on the action face to an energy face with the Bolt and Fist energy. I could have used her ability to spin it to an action face with bursts or even the single energy face, but I want the Bolt/Fist energy this turn instead.
~ (Main Step) I now begin my main step.

Official Sources

WizKids Official Rules Forum (WORF) does not have a ruling for this specific card.

Turn Order Summary Reference

turn-order

Unlimited Competitive Play Rating

I could see her being a useful rogue level card. There are not many action cards that benefit from a burst ability in the unlimited meta, but Cold Gun is definitely the biggest one. She can be useful in getting energy from a die that rolled an action face that you didn’t want an action for in that particular turn. In an unlimited setting, she is a good card, but I don’t think she’s that good to make a huge splash in the major meta. There are too many ways to get rid of her – easily. Her defense stats make her an easy target for the Magic Missile/Unstable Canister burn Global (or even the action ability). I think the most useful spot she can find is on a Bolt Ring team variant. She can spin those Kryptonite action faces over to bolt faces to help boost your damage. She does make for an easy DWiz distraction if your opponent is worried about you benefiting too much from her ability which could keep some of your other major pieces safe from the DWiz. But overall, I don’t think she’ll be as useful as some players have thought, and mainly because I think some folks have misread her ability. She doesn’t spin energy faces to action faces, which definitely would have made her over powered.

Renet Tilley: 79th Dimension of Null-Time gets a rating of three out of five stars.
3 Stars

Prime Play Rating

As far as Prime goes, the limited ramp and churn options make Renet Tilley a little more valuable. You don’t have to worry about a whiffed energy roll on an action die, or you could easily spin that Momentum to it’s double burst from its other action face. I think we’ll see her a lot more in Prime than unlimited. There are definitely less threats out there for direct removal in Prime too. A Cold Gun would KO her on any side because of her low defense, so she makes for a great no-burst Cold Gun target. I really like this card for Prime and I think we’ll see a lot of her in this format.

Renet Tilley: 79th Dimension of Null-Time gets a Prime rating of four out of five stars.
4 Stars

Casual Play Rating

I love how easy this card is to understand for a new player. The ability is worded well and there isn’t a lot of room for confusion. This is one of the many awesome cards in the newest TMNT box. That box is truly a comprehensive box of goodness and I will be recommending it to every new player! I’m really happy that the characters in this box are easy for beginners to understand and use, including this Renet Tilley. A new player will benefit from using this character because she’s not one that they would want to attack with, teaching newer players about the benefit of leaving your character active instead of attacking. I definitely recommend this card and the Heroes in a Half Shell box set for every player out there!

Renet Tilley: 79th Dimension of Null-Time gets a casual play rating of five out of five stars.
5 Stars

Opinions on this card? Leave a comment!
Is there a card your confused on?
Is there a combo that seems too good to be true?
Leave me a comment here or message me on Facebook at Dice Dice Kitty and thanks for reading!

Special thanks to The Reserve Pool for the use of their site.

Roll on, Dice Masters!

Greetings Fellow Dice Fans!

 

WizKids has released another complete box set for Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles! This set is called, Heroes in a Half Shell. If you purchase this box set, you will get the entire set, max dice for each character, and a bunch of other goodies!

TMNT 2 Heroes in a Half Shell.png

This box can be played as a stand alone product, added with the previous TMNT Box Set, or mixed in with the vast library of Dice Masters cards to enhance any team for various formats. This box set is great for casual players and seasoned players alike. If you’d like to take a look at the previous TMNT Box Set, you can find my review here.

You can find my review video on YouTube, here.

Dice Building Game Box Set

boxes

Box Contents

~ Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles Rulebook
~ 4 Color Coordinated Paper Playmats
~ 4 Color Coordinated Dice Bags
~ 12 Basic Action Dice
~ 32 Sidekick Dice
~ 48 Character Dice
~ 48 Character Cards
~ 10 Basic Action Cards
~ 4 Action Reminder Cards
~ Collection Tray with Clear Cover

Rulebook

Both this rulebook and the one from the first box have the doubles start up rules in the back. The rulebook feels durable and looks really nice. It’s one I’d like to keep on me as my reference rulebook.

rulebook

Keywords

There are several returning keywords in this set, but you won’t find any new ones.

Ally
Overcrush
Swarm
Turtle Power

WizKids has a comprehensive list of Keywords on their site. You can also find expanded descriptions for all the keywords on The Reserve Pool‘s site.

Affiliations

We don’t see any new affiliations, but the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtle affiliation returns in this box set. The other affiliation you’ll find is one that crosses over almost all other IPs, Villain.

Characters

If you haven’t seen any or most of the 2012 animated series, but plan to watch it later – you may want to skip reading some of this. I discuss lots of things from that series which could be seen as spoilers.

april

April makes her second appearance in Dice Masters. This time, she looks a little different. We now have the 80s animated version and the 2012 animated series version of April. She’s a Shield character and all of her versions have a cost of two. She has the Ally keyword on all three cards and each card does something directly related to the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtle affiliation. Please take note – she does not carry the TMNT affiliation herself! No Mere Damsel is absolutely my favorite of all three because she’s easy to purchase and helps reduce the cost of your other TMNT characters. A cheap character with Turtle Power seems really good for any team built around the TMNT affiliation. I don’t think any version of this April will make it into the unlimited scene, and it’s not likely she’ll see Prime play either unless someone finds a super awesome TMNT team build.

casey-jones
Casey Jones is back again as a Fist character with a purchase cost of two and three. Penalty Box is pretty handy for gaining life, but life gain is not all that prevalent in unlimited or Prime. I think he may be a nice tech piece for someone that can’t decide what their eighth character should be and it’s great that he has a Global already built in that helps his ability. I don’t like either of his other cards in this box. Penalty Box is not a bad choice for playing in casual or limited type event. Casey Jones would be an easy addition to any team that needs a cheap character. Although he’s not a Villain affiliated character, he could still be added to a Villain team and wouldn’t necessarily break theme because he was a vigilante that wasn’t always a friend of the Turtles.

donatello

Donatello is my dude! All of Donnie’s versions cost five energy, and we see the return of Turtle Power to the Turtle cards on Notice Me!. I don’t think Turtle Power is especially useful on characters that cost more than three or four. Something I like about all four Turtles is that they all have a version that does something similar to Intellectually Inclined. When they attack, they can each deal two damage to target character die or opponent if you pay an energy that corresponds to their energy type. Donatello is a Bolt character, so when he attacks, you can pay a Bolt energy to deal the two damage. I like that they all have a similar ability like that. Intellectually Inclined is my favorite of the three. Technologic would only be useful in a limited format where you’re only using the TMNT box sets. I don’t think that any version of Donnie will make it into unlimited play, but it’s possible that Intellectually Inclined might find a rogue home in Prime.

foot-ninja
Foot Ninjas are back! They are Bolt characters that all have the Ally keyword and all cost three energy. Shinobijutsu has the Swarm keyword as well, but it has the same issue as the other Swarm Foot Ninja from the first box set – max of three dice. I find Swarm to be much more effective when you have four or more dice for the card. Shinobijutsu also works with Shredder, so if you’re playing this guy in a limited setting, he may be fun. But then I saw Stick to the Shadows and fell in love with this card. I’m the type of player that loves Overcrush or direct damage, like the type of ability damage on Stick to the Shadows. The only trouble you might have is getting two or three of them active at the same time to attack with. I can see this version possibly making a splash in the Prime format, but not likely in unlimited. I don’t much care for the ability on Glass Jawed.

hamato-yoshi
First newcomer card – Hamato Yoshi. Hamato Yoshi suffers from an identity crisis over the various canons for TMNT. In one canon, he was the man that owned Splinter. Splinter watched and mimicked his movements while he was practicing martial arts. Splinter mastered the martial arts from his cage. Splinter went on to become the mutated rat we all know and love. In another canon, Hamato Yoshi was the adversary of Oroko Saki (Shredder) and was followed by Saki to the US. Yoshi was later exposed to mutagen causing him to mutate into a rat-man because he was mostly in contact with rats since he was living in the sewer with them.

Now, as for card abilities, I don’t like any of them. None of these type of cards fit how I play. All of the versions are expensive Shield type characters, and even the Global on Shidoshi isn’t good enough to justify adding him to a team. If you’re looking at him for limited or casual play, I’d probably go with Shidoshi. He would help your other attackers get through and with his huge defense, he might just survive!

karai
Karai is another new character to Dice Masters. She’s no stranger to fans of the comic and the 2012 animated series. Her card art comes from the 2012 series. She’s a four cost Fist character without an affiliation, and all of her versions do something in relation to Sidekicks. I really like Dark Lineage, because she could help slow the damage coming from Front Line teams. You have to keep her in the Field Zone though, which is not easy to do since Front Line typically runs Imprisoned (in unlimited) and they would snatch up any Karai threat. I could see her being really useful in Prime, casual, and limited. I’m not excited about Torn Between Two Worlds, but she could potentially eliminate a threatening Ally. I like anything that’s cheap to purchase and buffs my Sidekicks, like Uneasy Alliance. My favorite is definitely Dark Lineage, even though I like Uneasy Alliance a lot.

leatherhead
Leatherhead – the Cajun Gator that’s typically a villain in the TMNT universe, but becomes an anti-hero of sorts in the 2012 series canon. All the fun, conversational characters seem to cost the most… He’s also a new character to Dice Masters. He’s a five and six cost Shield character that does something with TMNT characters on all his versions. Of all of them, I like I Guarantee! the best, but none of them seem good for unlimited or even for Prime. In a limited format where you’re only playing with the TMNT boxes, I Guarantee! would definitely be my pick for a Villain team. He’s got some really beefy stats too and his fielding cost isn’t bad.

leonardo
Leonardo is our next Turtle in the box. All of his versions are five cost Fist characters. Fearless Leader has Turtle Power, which like I mentioned before, I don’t like on a five cost character – even in limited. Multifolded Steel is kind of interesting, if you somehow found a way to use the TMNT affiliation effectively. Plight of the Eldest is by far the best of the three. He has that cool ‘burn’ type ability that you can pay a Fist energy to use when he attacks. Just like with Donnie, I don’t think Leo is gonna see any unlimited play, and possibly only a rogue status in Prime. As for casual and limited, I could totally see someone finding a use for one the Leo cards.

metalhead

Metalhead makes his debut in the Dice Masters world. This character has a majorly distorted backstory. And like his backstory, his abilities are all over the place. Rogue Robot, purchase cost of five, gets an attack and defense buff for each other non-Metalhead TMNT affiliated character die – not character, but character die. This could potentially make him a monster of an attacker or defender. I’d say he’s probably my favorite of the three, but he’s not going to see any unlimited play and most likely not any Prime play either. His place to shine is limited and casual. Dissociative Identity works with other non-Metalhead TMNT character dice, making that die unblockable when he attacks. I don’t see him making it into unlimited or Prime either. Upgrading the Arsenal is probably the best candidate for Prime, but I doubt he’ll even make it to a rogue status. When he’s fielded, you can deal damage to a Villain die equal to his attack. It’s good, but not great. I still prefer Rogue Robot for fun stuff.

michelangelo

Here’s the party dude, Michelangelo! His five cost Turtle Power version on Booyakasha! is at the bottom of my list. Insatiable Appetite is the direct damage ability version, and since Mikey is a Mask character, this makes him very useful. Chuck and Chuck II: The Sequel has a very situational ability. There are ways to manipulate blockers and attackers to help ensure that situation happens, but it takes a lot to set up and use. Insatiable Appetite is my favorite and it looks like all those similar burn ability Turtles are going to my preferred versions. I don’t think any of Mikey’s cards will see any unlimited play and maybe only a rogue status in Prime, just like his brothers. For casual and limited, Insatiable Appetite is the way to go!

raphael

Rude dude Raphael is a five cost Shield character with the awesome ‘burn’ ability on Nightwatcher. He also has Turtle Power on Controlling His Temper, which is not exciting. Second Son could be useful in limited because he keeps your TMNT affiliated characters safe from being targeted by opposing action dice and Globals. I like Second Son a little more than Nightwatcher because his ability could be somewhat useful in a Prime format, depending on what TMNT affiliated character you can effectively use. As far as unlimited goes, there isn’t much that can break into the current meta unless it’s cheap and fast. I would love to give Second Son a try in casual and limited.

renet-tilley

Speaking of cheap, Renet Tilley is only a three cost Bolt character with decent abilities for all her cards. This is her first appearance in the universe of Dice Masters. Now, Renet has been around for a long time, but most folks don’t have a clue who she is. She has a lot to do with time traveling, which already scores her some negative marks in my book (as a character outside of Dice Masters). I don’t like needless time travel and she was a careless Time Master in the 2012 series. She is a friend of the Turtles, but she does not have the TMNT affiliation on her cards. As far as her card abilities go, 79th Dimension of Null-Time is definitely my favorite. Being able to spin that Cold Gun over to a burst face is HUGE! She’s likely going to see play in both unlimited and Prime. Impeccable Timing has an interesting ability that I need to play around with before saying I like it. Apprentice Timestress is a lesser version of Kang: The Conqueror or Scarlet Witch: Controls Probability. I can see all of her versions finding homes in limited and casual play, but 79th Dimension will most likely make it into unlimited and almost certainly into Prime. As a side note, the t on the end of her first name is not silent.

shredder

Shredder is a huge iconic Villain in the TMNT universe, so his cards deserve to be huge in purchase cost and have outrageous abilities that you’ll probably never get to go off. Surprisingly, Shredder has two versions that only cost six to buy. I know, it’s still a six cost character, but I expected him to be seven and eight costs. Scarred is interesting, but most likely not as useful as he could be since he costs six and then you need to Field him. His monstrous eight cost version, False Bushido, is not worth the effort it takes to get that ability to go off. Dining on Turtle Soup! is easily my favorite of the three. There are Globals that can force a character to attack, or better yet, force multiple characters to block and only attack with Shredder. That seems so silly and fun – I really want to build around that for our next event. Getting him into the Field could be difficult, but that’s when Polymorph Mutation comes in handy. He seems like a fun casual character, but I don’t see him making any team in unlimited or Prime.

slash

Slash is another of those Villains turned anti-hero later in the 2012 series. I kinda wish we had a version that wasn’t a Villain for that reason since they used the 2012 series art for the card. Don’t misunderstand me – I’m super excited to have Slash in our Dice Masters world. He’s a Bolt character with a purchase cost of five on all cards and each version has an ability that has something to do with ‘burn’ type ability damage. Specimen 6 deals damage equal to his attack to target opposing character die that isn’t blocking him. I like it, but I don’t love it. He won’t see unlimited play and I doubt he’d make a rogue status in Prime. Portal from Dimension X deals damage equal to his level to an opponent when he’s KO’d. You can pair that with Blue-Eyes or a Fabricate keyword to get some direct damage in to your opponent. It’s a relatively expensive way of burning your opponent and I don’t see it being used in unlimited or even Prime. Never Liked the Name “Spike” has a when KO’d ability as well. He deals damage to your opponent equal to the total amount energy in their Reserve Pool. I could see this being used in unlimited, if he didn’t cost five to purchase. I’m not sure how much Prime play he’ll see since there aren’t many effective or useful ways to KO your characters to get the most out of his ability. I like this version the best though, because I can easily use him in a casual setting and have fun with him.

tiger-claw

Tiger Claw is a new character to the TMNT universe, as far as I can tell. This is also his Dice Masters debut. There are several other tiger/cat mutant like characters, but I think this specific character didn’t come around until the 2012 series. Tiger Claw is another one of those expensive Villain characters, but one of the abilities and the stats almost make me want to attempt to play this card. I feel like Lost Humanity is too expensive for his ability, and Kraang Experiment just doesn’t seem good to me. I don’t like KO’ing my opponent’s character dice like that because it gives them more dice to roll on their next turn. I don’t see either of those two versions making it into unlimited or Prime. Seeking Vengeance is the version that I like the best and I’m a sucker for pricey characters that I can’t play in unlimited. I love Cheetah: Cursed Archaeologist, and Seeking Vengeance’s ability and attack stats are double that of Cheetah’s. Unfortunately, his cost is double too. I don’t think this card has a place in the current unlimited meta and I’m not sure he’ll make it in Prime either. As for the casual scene, this guy looks like loads of fun for a Villain team!

triceraton

Triceratons are a race of alien creatures that look like a triceratops-man thing. In almost all the TMNT universe canon, they’re strictly villains, which makes them Villains in Dice Masters! I welcome Triceraton to the Dice Masters universe! Triceraton is a Fist character with purchase costs of four and five. Cretaceous Crusher is the only four cost and he has no ability text. There are definitely cheaper Villains with better abilities for unlimited, and probably Prime too. But if you really need a four cost Villain with no ability, here he is! For limited play, he’s a great addition to a Villain team since he’s one of the cheapest. Orders from Captain Zorax gets a bonus of three to his attack, but only when he attacks. That would make his level one attack a total of six, and his level three attack a total of eight. That’s not too shabby. Loyal to a Fault has one of my favorite words as his keyword – Overcrush. I’d like to be able to buff his attack stat if I were to use this version, and there are definitely ways to do that. I think I like this dude better than the other two versions. For unlimited and Prime, I can’t see any Triceratons making the cut. For casual and limited, I think these guys are a great addition to Villains.

Character Thoughts

Renet Tilley is by far the most useful of all the characters in the box. Foot Ninjas and Karai are also good. Is the box worth purchasing for just those three characters? Maybe, depending on how bad you want or need those abilities. If you’re not excited yet, wait until you see the Basic Action Cards.

Basic Action Cards

The biggest selling point for this box set is probably the vast assortment of Basic Action Cards. Sure the characters fun and some are possible meta dudes, but with revamps of some major meta BACs in this box, I can’t think of a better argument to buy a box or two – that’s right, I said two.

w-haymaker-bac

Hello Anger Issues! I can’t tell you how happy I am to see a revamp of Anger Issues that will be legal for Prime. I have an attack buff and Overcrush all in one Action with Haymaker. This card is really high on my list of favorites for the BACs in this box. It’s a great card for all different formats from unlimited and Prime to casual and limited.

w-ingenious-tactics-bac

I did a quick search on DM RetroBox for a card that did something similar to this and I couldn’t find one. This ability seems really familiar to me but I can’t find where I’ve seen it. Ingenious Tactics is an interesting card. Using this action die will prevent all combat damage to each of your attacking character dice. I really like this BAC, but I’m not sure how I’m going to use it yet. It’s handy for keeping your dudes in the Field when your opponent’s blockers will likely get KO’d. I’ll be playing around with this to see if I can find a use for it, but the one major deterrent is the cost. If I’m paying five for an action, it better be AMAZING.

w-momentum-bac

Everyone is going crazy over this BAC. I don’t think folks are going to realize how much of a risk it is to use it until they try it on a team. Everyone went crazy over Pizza! until they realized how much is clunked up their bag and wasn’t as useful as they thought. I don’t think this die is gonna clunk up your bag or slow you down, but the risk you run by using this on your team is that your opponent can nab all of them before you even have a turn. I really love the ability on this BAC, but if my opponent brings this and I go first, I’m stealing all the Momentum.

w-mutation-bac

Welcome to Prime, Polymorph. This revamp made me happier than Haymaker. I’m a big  Poly-Player so it’s safe to say that Poly is getting replaced with Mutation. I love Turtles, so if I can replace a card with a TMNT version, I’m so going to. I don’t think this card needs much of a review since it’s a major unlimited meta card. Now it gets a shot in Prime, which I imagine it will be on many teams out there.

w-mysterious-shredder-transport-bac

Okay, several folks aren’t excited about this BAC, but I am. When a character is sacrificed, it doesn’t get KO’d, therefore it doesn’t gain the advantage of a When this character is KO’d ability. Mysterious Shredder Transport only costs three to purchase and has a great benefit. It’s a form of removal, which is not something we have a lot of in Prime. In an unlimited format, sacrificing characters could gum up someone’s bag or ruin someone’s plan. I really like this card and I’m totally gonna test it.

w-nefarious-broadcast-bac

Nefarious Broadcast is another BAC that I think could be highly useful. It can clear buffs or other active effects that come from Global Abilities and stop Globals from being used for the rest of the turn. This hurts you too, but if you’re not relying on active Global effects or planning to use any Globals, then you have nothing to worry about. It only cost two to purchase, so it’s an easy turn one purchase on a bad roll. I imagine someone will find a way to work this onto a team in unlimited and I can see it being used in Prime – especially since there are buff Globals available in Prime. For casual and limited play, it could be useful but completely depends on the local meta.

w-reclaim-bac

Escape Incarceration, minus the Resistance, has found its way into Prime… wait – it’s already Prime-Legal. Reclaim does cost one less than Escape Incarceration, which could be what makes someone choose Reclaim over Escape Incarceration. Escape Incarceration didn’t take off in unlimited, and I don’t see Reclaim finding a foothold either. As far as the Prime format goes, it’s possible we could see Reclaim over Escape Incarceration. A really bad roll on turn one could leave you with only two energy instead of three – and the wrong energy type too. This wouldn’t be a bad backup option and may be more useful to you than Nefarious Broadcast. In a casual and limited atmosphere, this BAC is definitely one I’d recommend over Escape Incarceration. It’s simpler to use and cost one less to buy.

w-speedy-delivery-bac

This is a revamp of Enrage from Uncanny X-Men. I can’t say that I’ve ever found a use for Enrage in an unlimited format where Invulnerability was available to me. There are plenty of taunt Globals out there, so the best thing about this BAC is the Global. This gives us a Bolt energy buff Global for Prime, which I don’t think we had. There are times where I’d rather have a Bolt buff than a Fist buff Global. It’s not a BAC that I’d toss to the side and forget about, but it’s not one that’s high on my list of BAC’s.

w-splinters-teachings-bac

This BAC is a revamp of Transfer Power from Uncanny X-Men, and a combination of Monster Reborn‘s ability and the Global on Mystic Box from the Yu-Gi-Oh! set. Transfer Power is a very useful card in unlimited, and now we have a revamp of it for Prime. I imagine that Splinter’s Teachings will see lots of play in Prime. For casual and limited, this is an awesome card, and not just for it’s Global. Like its predecessor, it only cost three to purchase, making it a good buy on your first turn if you don’t get the right energy for your characters. I would definitely recommend this BAC for both the competitive formats as well as casual and limited play.

w-unstable-canister-bac

Here is my second favorite BAC in this box set, the Magic Missile revamp. I love Mutation, but Unstable Canister is a close second. The major difference between Unstable Canister and Magic Missile’s abilities are that Canister references a TMNT affiliated character and Magic Missile references an adventurer. This BAC will allow Batman Family Bat-Bomb to go off easier with a more reliable way to KO Alfred dice in the Prime format. It’s also great for Storm: Extra Lightning on a Prime team. For a casual or limited format, this is a great card. BACs that cost three or less are ones that I prefer.

BAC Overview

Wow! Talk about a loaded box! This box has all the major BAC abilities that anyoen could want! Oh, except for Big Entrance… I love that card almost as much as Polymorph. I would love to be able to use it in Prime. Here’s hoping it’ll see a revamp in the Superman/Wonder Woman starter. But really, you couldn’t ask for a better comprehensive assortment of BACs. Not only does this help new players that can’t afford all those different starters, but it helps other players that didn’t want to purchase D&D products. Good call, WizKids.

Action Reminder Cards

action-reminder-colors
The four Action Reminder Cards are color coordinated with the four Turtles, which is a nice touch. It makes it easy for players to use their favorite color of the four, or play with their favorite Turtle’s color.

Paper Playmats

playmats

Just like the previous box set, the paper playmats’ artwork and color coordinate with the four Turtles. There are lots of reminders and tips on the playmats to help new players.

Dice Bags

The four dice bags are the normal paper bags that we’ve seen in the previous box set and other starters. The dice bags have artwork and colors that coordinate with the Turtles, just like the first box set. I love that they do that, making it easy for anyone to pick their favorite Turtle and represent them. #TeamDonnie Purple for me please!

Action Dice and Sidekick Dice

sidekicks-and-action-dice
You’ll get enough Sidekick dice for four players as well as four different colors of Basic Action Dice. The Actions are color coordinated with the four Turtles, just like the bags and playmats.

As with the first box set, each of the Turtles have their very own dice designs. These are the dice for each of the four Turtles from the first box set.

01 Turtles Dice

These are the dice for the four Turtles from the new Heroes in a Half Shell box set.

tmnt-2-turtles

I think I like the first set’s dice best, but images on the second set’s dice are cool too. They used silhouettes of the Turtles from the 2012 animated series.

Storage Box

The picture on the right shows the box with both sets of dice and cards, including both sets of Sidekicks and Basic Action Dice.

The first box set didn’t have the clear tray cover which caused lots of transporting issues. Dice would slide and bounce all over the box, and even jam themselves in such a way that the box lid would lift up and possibly spill the contents everywhere. I’m so happy that WizKids added the clear cover to this box. I can put all of my TMNT dice in this second box and not worry about the box lid coming off just because the box tilted or slid onto its side in the car.

Final Thoughts

There were major improvements from the first box set. I loved the first box, but I’m in love with this one. When a new player joins our group, this is going to be the very first product that I recommend for them to purchase – not just because I love TMNT so much, but because you can’t find a better assortment of vital and useful card abilities in any other Dice Masters starter or box set. If you’re new to Dice Masters or you’re trying to help a new player with recommendations, this is the product to look at. Many of these cards are great for casual and limited play, but also highly useful in the new PDC Prime format and even unlimited.

Aside from the obvious usefulness of many of the cards for unlimited and Prime, I love how the cards work so well together within the box too. A new player can combine both box sets for even more Turtle fun! These two boxes make for a great purchase for any Turtle fan that wants to play a game using their favorite TMNT characters but doesn’t want to jump all in to the larger world of Dice Masters.

WizKids has done some amazing things with the additions of the Box Sets, the yearly Starters, and the Team Packs. It makes the game more affordable for folks that also play other collectible games, therefore keeping those folks in the community. It also allows players like myself to expand into the other games that WizKids produces, like HeroClix, where I wasn’t able to before. I really feel like WizKids is on the right track, so long as they can better balance their release dates. That’s another growing pain that younger games experience and the balancing act will come with time. They’re just now introducing the yearly starters, so once they find the best form of product releases, the release date balancing should improve. I’m excited for what the future holds for Dice Masters. I hope that WizKids decides to branch out into other IPs and release them as all inclusive Box Sets.

What are your favorite cards?
What do you think of the Dice Building Game box?
Leave me a comment here or message me on Facebook at Dice Dice Kitty and thanks for reading!

Special thanks to WizKids and The Reserve Pool for the use of their sites.

Roll on, Dice Masters!

Greetings Fellow Dice Fans!

 

For this week’s confusing card of the week article, we’re going to take a look at the Turtle Van: Basic Action Card from the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles box set. This is in celebration of the release of the new Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: Heroes in a Half-Shell box set that’s due out tomorrow!

w-turtle-van-bac

Ruling – Ability

Turtle Van is a Continuous Basic Action. If a card ability would affect an Action Die, Turtle Van could be chosen for the effect. One such example is Constantine: Antihero.

Continuous is a keyword found on Action cards. When you use the action die, it is placed in the Field Zone and will remain in the Field Zone until the ability is activated or triggered. Activating or triggering the ability is not considered ‘using’ the die. Using the die is when you move it from your Reserve Pool into the Field Zone. It can remain in the Field Zone after your turn.

Turtle Van’s ability says that you can send Turtle Van to your Used Pile and prevent all damage to a target blocking character. This ability targets a single character die when you activate it. You may target one of your character dice or one of your opponent’s character dice. When activated, the target blocking character die will take no damage from the character it’s blocking. It will also be protected from any Globals or abilities that would damage it after the activation of Turtle Van.

There is a specific timing window for when you can activate Turtle Van. You can only activate the ability on a Turtle Van die after blockers have been assigned, during the Actions and Globals portion of the Attack Step. If you’re the active player, you will have priority to use Actions and Globals. If you’re not the active player, you will have to wait until your opponent passes you priority before you can activate Turtle Van. That means your character can still take ability damage before you’re passed priority and able to activate Turtle Van.

When you activate Turtle Van, it will go directly to the Used Pile, as per the card text.

Turtle Van has a special interaction with Overcrush. Overcrush will only work if all of the attacking character die’s blockers have been KO’d or removed by an effect. If the blocker is still present, but the damage to the blocker is prevented by an ability like Turtle Van, Overcrush will not work.

Miscellaneous Card Information

~ Turtle Van is a Basic Action with no energy type.
~ It does not have an affiliation.
~ It has a max dice of three.
~ This card is a Common and is #58 of 58.

If you purchase the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turltes Box Set, you will have one copy of each card in the entire set, as well as the maximum number of dice for each card.

Examples

These examples are for information purposes only, to show what would happen in certain scenarios. I am not suggesting that these examples are the best outcomes for each scenario and each example only features relevant parts of the turn, not the entire turn.

Example One:
Using Turtle Van on your turn.

~ I have one Turtle Van die and a level three Gorilla Grodd: Force of Mind die in the Field Zone. My opponent has a Sidekick die in the Field Zone.
~ (Attack Step – Assign Attackers) I assign my Gorilla Grodd as an attacker, moving him into the Attack Zone.
~ (Attack Step – Assign Blockers) My opponent assigns their Sidekick to block my Grodd, moving it into the Attack Zone in front of my Grodd die.
~ (Attack Step – Actions and Globals) I activate my Turtle Van, targeting my opponent’s Sidekick die and placing my Turtle Van into the Used Pile. The Sidekick will take no damage for the rest of the turn. I don’t activate/use any other Actions or Globals, and my opponent doesn’t use any Globals.
~ (Attack Step – Assign and Resolve Damage) My Grodd’s seven damage is assigned to the Sidekick, but the Sidekick will take no damage. The Sidekick assigns its one damage to Grodd, but it’s not enough to KO him.
~ (Clean Up Step) Both character dice are returned to the Field Zone. All effects end and all dice Out of Play are moved to the Used Pile.

Example Two:
Turtle Van interaction with Overcrush, on your opponent’s turn.

~ I have one Turtle Van die and two Sidekick dice in the Field Zone. My opponent has a level three Gorilla Grodd die in the Field Zone. My opponent has one Bolt energy in the Reserve Pool and has Magic Missile: Basic Action Card.
~ (Attack Step – Assign Attackers) My opponent assigns Gorilla Grodd as an attacker, moving him into the Attack Zone.
~ (Attack Step – Assign Blockers) I assign both of my Sidekick dice to block Grodd, moving them into the Attack Zone in front of the Grodd die.
~ (Attack Step – Actions and Globals) My opponent has priority on Actions and Globals, so they use their Bolt energy (moving it Out of Play) to activate the Global on Magic Missile and target one of my blocking Sidekick dice. The Sidekick is KO’d and placed in my Prep Area. My opponent passes priority to me and I activate my Turtle Van, targeting my remaining blocking Sidekick and placing my Turtle Van die in the Used Pile.
~ (Attack Step – Assign and Resolve Damage) Grodd’s seven damage is assigned to the Sidekick, but the Sidekick will take no damage. The Sidekick assigns its one damage to Grodd, but it’s not enough to KO him.
~ (Clean Up Step) Both character dice are returned to the Field Zone. All effects end and all dice Out of Play are moved to the Used Pile.

Official Sources

WizKids Official Rules Forum (WORF) does not have a ruling for this specific card.

Turn Order Summary Reference

turn-order

Unlimited Competitive Play Rating

Overcrush is not a huge deal in the current meta, but as soon as you don’t bring an answer for it, you’ll face off against a rogue Overcrush team. This action isn’t just good for stopping Overcrush, it’s also handy in preventing your opponent’s blocking character from taking damage and getting some crazy effect to go off or even save one of your own blockers from being KO’d. I could see someone adding this to a team if they’re worried about Overcrush and it’s not a terrible card. But since Overcrush isn’t a major meta thing, I can’t give Turtle Van more than a rogue rating. It’s useful for other things besides stopping Overcrush, but there are also tons of other really good BACs out there that someone may want to use instead.

Turtle Van: Basic Action Card gets a rating of three out of five stars.
3 Stars

Prime Play Rating

Turtle Van has been a huge deal in our local Prime meta. Everyone has an Overcrush team of some kind and Turtle Van is a great tech against it. If other meta scenes even slightly resemble ours, then I could see this particular BAC making it onto lots of teams. It’s also great for stopping double damage that a character may be dealing with against Lady Bullseye’s ability. I really like this card and I’d be surprised if it didn’t make at least Prime rogue status, even with the new versions of Polymorph and Magic Missile coming out tomorrow in the new TMNT Box Set.

Turtle Van: Basic Action Card gets a Prime rating of four out of five stars.
4 Stars

Casual Play Rating

I’ve seen this card in lots of casual matches. It’s not a super confusing ability, but the tricks of how to use it against Overcrush are not as apparent to new players. Learning to use the card in that way is something that comes with experience. The one major thing about this card that confuses players is the Continuous part. Even after some explanation, beginners and less experienced players still have a hard time understanding that action dice do not stay in your Reserve Pool – you can’t use action dice on your opponent’s turn. Newer players confuse using an action die with activating an action die’s ability. That’s really the only thing holding Turtle Van back from a five star casual rating. I still recommend this card to our newer players because it’s a great way to learn how to use action dice and how/when to activate Continuous action dice. Don’t discourage new players from Continuous actions just because they can be difficult to understand at first. If you’re a newer player reading this, I encourage you to add at least one Continuous action to your team and play with it. There are lots of great Continuous actions out there, including Turtle Van!

Turtle Van: Basic Action Card gets a casual play rating of four out of five stars.
4 Stars

Opinions on this card? Leave a comment!
Is there a card your confused on?
Is there a combo that seems too good to be true?
Leave me a comment here or message me on Facebook at Dice Dice Kitty and thanks for reading!

Special thanks to The Reserve Pool for the use of their site.

Roll on, Dice Masters!

Greetings Fellow Dice Fans!

 

For this week’s confusing card of the week article, we’re going to take a look at Stepford Cuckoos: Celeste from the Marvel Deadpool set.

w-stepford-cuckoos-celeste

Ruling – Ability

Stepford Cuckoos has a When Fielded ability. This type of ability only works when you move the character die into field either from your Reserve Pool by paying its fielding cost or by an ability that specifically tells you to field the character die. Swapping the die into the Field Zone or moving/placing the die by other means will not allow you to use the When Fielded ability.

This ability is not optional, meaning you must do as much as you can of her ability as you’re able to do. If you field her and your opponent doesn’t have any character dice in the Field Zone, you must still move one of your character dice to your Prep Area.

If you only have the Stepford Cuckoos die that you just fielded in the Field Zone, she must target herself. You may choose her as your target for her ability instead of another one of your character dice. Your opponent gets to choose which of their character dice to target. The wording of her ability suggests that each player choose one of their own character dice and not that the controller of Stepford Cuckoos gets to choose both.

Character dice that are moved by the Stepford Cuckoos’ ability are not considered to have been KO’d. You would not gain the benefit of a KO ability, like the ability on Jade: Jennifer-Lynn Hayden.

Stepford Cuckoos’ ability does not say that one player should reveal their choice before the other. If this becomes an issue, the active player should reveal their choice first, since the active player has priority.

Miscellaneous Card Information

~ Stepford Cuckoos: Celeste is a Mask Character.
~ She has the X-Men affiliation.
~ She has a max dice of four.
~ This card is an Uncommon and is #76 of 124.

Examples

These examples are for information purposes only, to show what would happen in certain scenarios. I am not suggesting that these examples are the best outcomes for each scenario and each example only features relevant parts of the turn, not the entire turn.

Example One:
Stepford Cuckoos fielded with other characters in the Field Zone.

~ I have one level one Stepford Cuckoos die in the Reserve Pool, and a Sidekick die in the Field Zone. My opponent has two Sidekick dice and an Oracle die in the Field Zone.
~ (Main Step) I field my Stepford Cuckoos. I choose to target Stepford Cuckoos with her ability and my opponent chooses to target one of their Sidekicks. Both dice are then placed in the appropriate Prep Areas.

Example Two:
Stepford Cuckoos fielded with no other characters in the Field Zone.

~ I have one level one Stepford Cuckoos die in the Reserve Pool. There are no other characters in the Field Zone on either side.
~ (Main Step) I field my Stepford Cuckoos. My opponent doesn’t have any characters to move. I only have the Stepford Cuckoos, so I must target her and move her to my Prep Area.

Example Three:
Stepford Cuckoos and KO abilities.

~ I have one level one Stepford Cuckoos die in the Reserve Pool and no characters in the Field Zone. My opponent has a Jade: Jennifer-Lynn Hayden in the Field Zone.
~ (Main Step) I field my Stepford Cuckoos. I only have the Stepford Cuckoos, so I must target her and my opponent must choose Jade, but they will not get to use her ability because she’s not being KO’d.

Official Sources

WizKids Official Rules Forum (WORF) does not have an official ruling for this specific card.

You can find a relevant When Fielded ability ruling on Miri Riam: Beacon In The Darkhere.

Turn Order Summary Reference

turn-order

Unlimited Competitive Play Rating

I don’t see this card being particularly useful in the current meta. She has the potential to rid the field of troublesome characters without KO’ing them, but your opponent still controls which one of their characters gets targeted by her ability. They could easily target and move a Sidekick instead of their big nasty. She’s rather handy for unique form of ramp, but not completely reliable – and PXG is still legal in the unlimited meta. I don’t think folks should throw her in a box and forget she exists though. There could be a card or cards in a future set that make her very worthwhile. She’s worth keeping in the back of your mind, but she’s not a card I expect to see in many major unlimited format events.

Stepford Cuckoos: Celeste gets a rating of two out of five stars.
2 Stars

Prime Play Rating

I played with this card over the weekend in our Prime event and I absolutely love this card! My only mistake was not using enough of her dice. She’s a form of ramp and partial control in prime. I would definitely recommend her if you’re having trouble purchasing larger characters or having issues with your opponent’s characters that are in the Field. Even though they have the power of choice, you’re still making them choose a character that won’t be in the field the rest of the turn. That’s a tough choice between a Ronin and an Oracle when you know you’re opponent could use attack pumping Globals and they have potential Overcrushing attackers. Her fielding costs make me love her even more, because even on her level three side, I still feel like I’m benefiting from her. I would not be surprised to see Celeste or even Mindee on prime teams. Do not overlook this card – she is worth testing with!

Stepford Cuckoos: Celeste gets a Prime rating of four out of five stars.
4 Stars

Casual Play Rating

The only reason Stepford Cuckoos does not get a five star rating from me is because beginners or newer players may not realize that she can be targeted with her own ability. This could potentially lead to misplays or even a dispute over how her ability is supposed to work. She’s still a great card for a beginner, so long as they understand that she can be your target for her ability. Newer players may not fully understand why you would want to move one of your own characters to the Prep Area, but that’s strategy that comes with experience. I think Celeste is perfect for teaching beginners and newer players about the benefits of having those extra dice in your Prep Area every so often – Especially one that can move an opponent’s character out of the Field Zone. Some players may not realize that they do not get to pick both character dice when they field her, but that’s easily explained. She’s a great card for a new player to add to a team and highly recommend her for players of all skill levels.

Stepford Cuckoos: Celeste gets a casual play rating of four out of five stars.
4 Stars

Opinions on this card? Leave a comment!
Is there a card your confused on?
Is there a combo that seems too good to be true?
Leave me a comment here or message me on Facebook at Dice Dice Kitty and thanks for reading!

Special thanks to The Reserve Pool for the use of their site.

Roll on, Dice Masters!

Greetings Fellow Dice Fans!

 

For this week’s confusing card of the week article, we’re going to take a look at Hit-Monkey: He’s A Hitman. Who’s a Monkey from the Marvel Deadpool set.

w-hit-monkey-hes-a-hitman-whos-a-monkey

Ruling – Ability

Hit-Monkey has an ability that can be activated when he’s blocked. When he’s blocked, you may pay a fist energy to assign Hit-Monkey’s combat damage to the defending player as if he wasn’t blocked, but only for that turn.

His combat damage has no effect on the character or characters that block him, because you are using his ability to redirect his combat damage to a different source other than the blockers. Hit-Monkey would not deal damage to his blockers, but they would deal their combat damage to him, possibly KO’ing him.

If you pay the fist to use Hit-Monkey’s ability and an effect would remove his card text, you would no longer be able to assign his damage to your opponent. This is because his card would have been blanked before the Assign Damage portion of the Attack Step. You would only be able to assign damage to the characters blocking Hit-Monkey. You would not get the fist energy spent for his ability back.

It is also important to remember that even though you’re able to assign his combat damage to your opponent, Hit-Monkey is still considered blocked and would gain no benefit from effects that affect unblocked characters.

If the blockers are not able to KO Hit-Monkey, he would return the Field Zone during the Clean Up Step. This is because he was blocked, but not KO’d. It does not matter that he assigned his combat damage somewhere else, only that he was blocked and not KO’d. If he’s KO’d, then he will go to the Prep Area.

Miscellaneous Card Information

~ Hit-Monkey: He’s A Hitman. Who’s a Monkey is a Fist Character.
~ He has no affiliation.
~ He has a max dice of four.
~ This card is an Uncommon and is #58 of 124.

Examples

These examples are for information purposes only, to show what would happen in certain scenarios. I am not suggesting that these examples are the best outcomes for each scenario and each example only features relevant parts of the turn, not the entire turn.

Example:
Hit-Monkey blocked and not KO’d.

~ I have one level three Hit-Monkey die in the Field Zone and one fist energy in the Reserve Pool. My opponent has one Sidekick in the Field Zone.
~ (Attack Step – Assign Attackers) I assign my Hit-Monkey as an attacker, placing his die in the Attack Zone.
~ (Attack Step – Assign Blockers) My opponent assigns their Sidekick to block my Hit-Monkey, placing it in front of his die in the Attack Zone. Since Hit-Monkey has been blocked, I can now activate his ability. I spend the fist energy (placing it Out of Play) to activate Hit-Monkey’s ability. Hit-Monkey will now be able to assign his combat damage to my opponent instead of the Sidekick.
~ (Attack Step – Actions and Globals) I do not use any Action dice or Globals. I pass priority to my opponent and they choose not to use any Globals.
~ (Attack Step – Assign and Resolve Damage) Hit-Monkey assigns his four damage to my opponent. The Sidekick assigns its one damage to Hit-Monkey. Damage resolves simultaneously after it’s been assigned, so my opponent takes four damage and Hit-Monkey takes one damage. Hit-Monkey has a defense of three, so he is not KO’d by the one damage from the Sidekick. The Sidekick is not dealt any damage, so it’s not KO’d.
~ (Clean Up Step) Hit-Monkey is blocked and not KO’d, so he is placed back in the Field Zone. The Sidekick blocked and was not KO’d, so it’s placed back in the Field Zone. All effects end and all dice that are Out of Play are placed in the Used Pile.

Example:
Hit-Monkey blocked and card text is blanked after his ability has been used.

~ I have one level three Hit-Monkey die in the Field Zone. I also have one fist energy and a Flying Car: Buckle Up! action die in the Reserve Pool. My opponent has one Sidekick in the Field Zone.
~ (Attack Step – Assign Attackers) I assign my Hit-Monkey as an attacker, placing his die in the Attack Zone.
~ (Attack Step – Assign Blockers) My opponent assigns their Sidekick to block my Hit-Monkey, placing it in front of his die in the Attack Zone. Since Hit-Monkey has been blocked, I can now activate his ability. I spend the fist energy (placing it Out of Play) to activate Hit-Monkey’s ability. Hit-Monkey will now be able to assign his combat damage to my opponent instead of the Sidekick.
~ (Attack Step – Actions and Globals) I use my Flying Car action to give Hit-Monkey a +3A/+3D, but it removes all of Hit-Monkey’s ability text. I pass priority to my opponent and they choose not to use any Globals.
~ (Attack Step – Assign and Resolve Damage) Hit-Monkey assigns his seven damage to Sidekick that’s blocking him. The Sidekick assigns its one damage to Hit-Monkey. Damage resolves simultaneously after it’s been assigned, so the Sidekick takes seven damage and Hit-Monkey takes one damage. Hit-Monkey has a defense of six, so he is not KO’d by the one damage from the Sidekick. The Sidekick has one defense and is KO’d by Hit-Monkey’s seven attack.
~ (Clean Up Step) Hit-Monkey is blocked and not KO’d, so he is placed back in the Field Zone. The Sidekick is placed in the Prep Area because it was KO’d. All effects end and all dice that are Out of Play are placed in the Used Pile.

Official Sources

You can find an official ruling about the card on WizKids Official Rules Forum (WORF), here.

Turn Order Summary Reference

turn-order

Unlimited Competitive Play Rating

As much as I like this card, I think he’s too difficult to work with in an Unlimited format where there are better cards. His ability is good and I think that the right pilot with the right team build might be able to make him work. It takes special care and specific building to make something like this viable though, so I don’t think he’s a card that will see a lot of Unlimited play in the current meta. He’s still a good card, just not the best choice for this particular format. I don’t think he’s fast enough for the current speed of the meta.

Hit-Monkey: He’s A Hitman. Who’s a Monkey gets a rating of one out of five stars.
1 Star

Prime Play Rating

I don’t think this card is getting the recognition it deserves for the Prime format. I think this card may see more play, and even a few top positions in some upcoming PDC events. If it doesn’t, I would be very disappointed, but not surprised since he doesn’t get much love anyway. I could be totally wrong about this card, but it seems like such a good card with the current list of available cards. There are still plenty of build options for using a card like this and not a whole lot of ways around it. I suspect Captain Cold’s Cold Gun: Frozen “Firearm” is going to make every team list, but there are ways to play around those. Hit-Monkey may not be everyone’s style, but I think he has great potential and folks would be remiss to not give this card a shot on a team.

Hit-Monkey: He’s A Hitman. Who’s a Monkey. gets a Prime rating of four out of five stars.
4 Stars

Casual Play Rating

It’s not often that a card receives a five star rating from me, especially for a beginning or casual player. I don’t think a card ability can be written any more clear than how this one is written. It even has reminder text that helps remind the player that the combat damage is not dealt to the blocking character(s). The confusion around this card begins when you get into more advanced level of play, like the examples in the WORF ruling. But for beginners and casual players that don’t see a lot of the competitive type cards, this is probably one of the best cards to start someone off with. This character’s ability is great to play on its own or with some combo cards, which is one of the reasons it’s such a good card for beginners. I can easily recommend this card for a player of any skill level.

Hit-Monkey: He’s A Hitman. Who’s a Monkey gets a casual play rating of five out of five stars.
5 Stars

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Roll on, Dice Masters!

Greetings Fellow Dice Fans!

 

For this week’s confusing card of the week article, we’re going to take a look at Punisher: War Journal from the Marvel Civil War set.

I’m also adding a new Prime Rating to each of my Confusing Card of the Week articles. They will follow the same rating system as the Unlimited Competitive Rating, since Prime is also a competitive format. You can find a breakdown of how I choose my ratings on my sticky article, Helpful Sites and About this Blog.

w-punisher-war-journal

Ruling – Ability

Punisher has a When Fielded ability. This type of ability only works when you move the character die into field either from your Reserve Pool by paying its fielding cost or by an ability that specifically tells you to field the character die. Swapping the die into the Field Zone or moving/placing the die by other means will not allow you to use the When Fielded ability.

“Field a character at level one from Used Pile.” This type of wording would allow you to use the When Fielded ability.

“Move a character from your Used Pile to the Field Zone at level one.” This type of wording does not allow you to use the When Fielded ability.

Punisher says when you field his die, each non-Sidekick character die that you field for the rest of the turn gains the keyword, Intimidate. Each non-Sidekick character that enters the Field Zone after Punisher will be able to use Intimidate.

Intimidate is a When Fielded ability that allows that character to remove another character die from the Field Zone until end of turn. You can target an opposing character die or one of your own character dice. The removed character die is placed to the side next to your character cards, but do not place it on the character cards. Nothing else can effect the removed dice because they are no longer in the play area.

At the end of turn, the removed character dice will return to the Field Zone at the level they were on when they were removed. These dice do not return until the Clean Up Step, so they will not be eligible as blockers during the Attack Step.

When a character with a When Fielded ability is returned to the Field Zone after being removed by Intimidate, you do not get to activate that ability. The returning character dice are not being fielded.

A character with the Ally keyword would not be able to use the Intimidate granted by Punisher’s ability. When a character with Ally is fielded, they are considered a Sidekick as long as they are in the Field Zone. You are not able to use Intimidate on your characters until they are fielded. If Ally were a triggered ability, like a When Fielded ability, you would be able to choose the order in which they triggered. Ally is a static type effect that happens as soon as the conditions are met. This does not give you a window to use Intimidate.

Miscellaneous Card Information

~ Punisher: War Journal is a Fist Character.
~ He has the Thunderbolts affiliation.
~ He has a max dice of four.
~ This card is an Uncommon and is #92 of 142.

Examples

These examples are for information purposes only, to show what would happen in certain scenarios. I am not suggesting that these examples are the best outcomes for each scenario and each example only features relevant parts of the turn, not the entire turn.

Example:

~ I have a Punisher die, a Sidekick die, an Alfred die, a Wolverine die, an Oracle die, and four fist energy in my Reserve Pool (all my character dice are level one). My opponent has a level three Hulk die and a Sidekick die in the Field Zone.
~ (Main Step) I spend one fist energy (moving it Out of Play) to pay Punisher’s fielding cost, and then field my Punisher die. All non-Sidekick characters that I field for the rest of the turn will gain Intimidate.
~ (Main Step) I spend one fist energy (moving it Out of Play) to use the Global on Anger Issues and target my Punisher die to give him +1A (for a current total of 5A).
~ (Main Step) I field my Sidekick. The Sidekick does not get to use Intimidate.
~ (Main Step) I field my Alfred. He is an Ally as he enters the Field Zone, so he does not get to use Intimidate.
~ (Main Step) I spend one fist energy (moving it Out of Play) to field my Wolverine die. He is not a Sidekick, so he gets to use Intimidate. I target my opponent’s Hulk die and my opponent moves that die next to my character cards, showing that it’s removed from play.
~ (Main Step) I field my Oracle die. She is not a Sidekick, so she gets to use Intimidate. I target my opponent’s Sidekick die and place it next to their Hulk die.
~ (Main Step) I pass priority to my opponent. My opponent does not use any Globals, and passes priority back.
~ (Attack Step – Assign Attackers) I assign my Punisher, Wolverine, and Sidekick as attackers.
~ (Attack Step – Assign Blockers) My opponent does not have any characters to block with.
~ (Attack Step – Actions and Globals) I spend my last fist energy (moving it Out of Play) to use the Global on Anger Issues and target my Punisher die to give him +1A (for a total of 6A). I pass priority to my opponent to give them an opportunity to use Globals. They do not use any and pass priority back to me.
~ (Attack Step – Assign and Resolve Damage) All of my attackers are unblocked and assign their damage to my opponent. Punisher would deal six damage, Wolverine would deal four damage, and the Sidekick would deal one damage, for a total of eleven damage. These unblocked characters are now placed Out of Play.
~ (Clean Up Step) All dice that are Out of Play are moved to the Used Pile. All effects end (unless otherwise stated). The two characters removed from play by Intimidate are placed back in the Field Zone on their previous levels.


Official Sources

You can find an official ruling about the card on WizKids Official Rules Forum (WORF), here.

You can find an official definition for Intimidate on the Keywords Page.

You can find additional information on Intimidate in The Reserve Pool’s Lexicon page, here.

Turn Order Summary Reference

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Unlimited Competitive Play Rating

I do not see this character making it onto any competitive unlimited team. He cost high, his TFC isn’t good for what his ability does, and he is conditional. I say he’s conditional because there are plenty of competitive teams that don’t need active character dice and not many (if any) of your own characters that benefit from returning to play without being ‘fielded’. Vicious Struggle teams don’t normally field any characters. Other teams would likely not be threatened by the temporary removal of their characters. It might be an annoyance for the one turn, but then you would need to cycle Punisher, and any other characters you’re using with him. If WizKids rules that you can use Allies with Punisher, then that may make him a little better, but still not a card I’d consider for a competitive format.

Punisher: War Journal gets a rating of zero out of five stars.
0 Stars

Prime Play Rating

With the loss of Elf Thief and the lack of cost reduction, this card does not seem very useful in Prime. I will admit, he’s more appealing for a Prime format where you’ll likely see more teams with characters that stay fielded, but you still need to work hard – probably harder – to get this crazy combo to go off. I wouldn’t expect to see him in any top teams in the Prime format either. There are still much better options for crazy combos, and even fun combos that require much less work and are not as frustrating to get functioning.

Punisher: War Journal gets a Prime rating of one out of five stars.
1 Star

Casual Play Rating

I don’t particularly like Punisher for casual play either. His ability can be confusing and difficult to use in a casual setting. A more experienced player could use this card as a teaching tool, but I think there are better alternatives for that. I think the right pilot could run a team with him and cheap fielding characters effectively, but it still would require specific card choices and a really good understanding of the game. If you’re playing in a casual setting and you want to try something different, then maybe this card could give you that. I can’t recommend this card for a brand new player, but more experienced players might be able to build a fun team with him.

Punisher: War Journal gets a casual play rating of two out of five stars.
2 Stars

Opinions on this card? Leave a comment!
Is there a card your confused on?
Is there a combo that seems too good to be true?
Leave me a comment here or message me on Facebook at Dice Dice Kitty and thanks for reading!

Special thanks to The Reserve Pool for the use of their site.

Roll on, Dice Masters!