Ogre rates EoW!

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Shinjo Dalu
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Fri Apr 06, 2012 6:23 pm

Hello again! Ogre here with another installment of what my gut tells me about cards and stuff! Wooo! This time our discussion is on he Embers of War previews for Unicorn clan. We get to see the direction design wants us to go in the upcoming expansions and our first glimpse at new personalities.

EoW also contains in a new stronghold for the Unicorn clan and will be my first card target. Then I will meander my way down the personalities we get and then some notes on the other stuff! So onward to the goods!

The Ki-Rin's Path - *Sucks in Breath* Ok, my first initial reaction to this card was "pile of crap." Out tacticians, for the most part, lacked real battle actions so I was hoping for their stronghold to be a battle action that did stuff (Four Military themes and only two out of five Strongholds have battle actions? Lame). Then after further examining the Stronghold it grew on me a little bit. Just actively giving out the force bonus and cavalry bonus makes out tacticians really good Force to gold Ratio for cavalry personalities. Sanenari is 3F for 3 Gold, Junpei is 4 Force for 5 Gold, Tairu is 5F for 6 gold, Junpei Exp is 5F for 6 and Isul is 5F for 6 Gold. However, tacticians who are already cavalry are pretty poor with this box, only gaining 1F and not much else. As a player it gives you the option of deciding when you need the extra force and cavalry from your personality or if you need to wait to battle to pitch a card for extra force. The downside to the versatility is your box does nothing else (Footsteps of Madness meta!). With six cards handing out the tactician candy (Spirit of Knowledge and Gaining Experience) the possibility of turning out of clan personalities to cavalry is enticing (hello cavalry Hotako and Gyoken!). I give it a B- overall, losing points for making me consider Sea Troll Predator.

Shinjo Junpei exp. - Junpei gains a force and a gold cost and still maintains I do something at home to do stuff to your opponents guy in battle. This time it is a Melee 4, which, while not great, is not bad either. Since it is dual performed it can be performed off a naval action as well. However, disappointingly, it requires the use of Tactician (which hurts his usage with both the new box and the old box). He still maintains a decent force to gold ratio but comparing all things, he just isnt as good as Tairu exp at the same gold level. Junpei receives a negative 6 degrees Celsius for his attempt at being a card.

Moto Isul - "Hi! Im Moto Isul! With the new box, I am Shinjo Horibe on crack!" This guy is tied for first on levels of awesomeness of the previewed personalities for Unicorn. At 4F Tactician he can solo most provinces on his own with a 4 Focus card. With either box his ability is great also (not requiring tactician is pretty important here). Nice thing too is he can trigger even when your guys are not opposed (take that Horibe), helping with Water/Tamori box and other effects. Great versatile personality. I give him 4 shooting stars.

Iuchi Yuri - Thats .... a lot of stats. Immediate comparison to Phoenix's Kojiro at the same cost and chi. Is the trait to gain naval better than static +1 force? The answer is .... it depends. Naval is a great trait to have on attacking cavalry personalities allowing you to pick off defenders at your whim. However, at 6 force rather than 5, Yuri gets up to province crushing force alot easier with any of the multitude of 2F spells (Scouring Flood, Bo of Water, and the new Swell of Strength). Kojiro requires a bit more expensive spell to take a province (lucky I guess to have a SH produce gold for spells). Five chi is really nice to have for a few different spell effects as well (A Dragon's Favor, Pearl of Rage, Capturing the Soul, and the Kami's blessing come to mind). I give him two apples and three oranges for being generic fruit.

Shinjo Sarang
- Battle Wooden Barricade the personality. Break out your Shrine to Hachiman's because this is where they will be important. Using the same follower to take out a province twice in one turn is great ability to have. This guy also further opens up the ability to use Infantry followers in our decks (Jun-ni takes one at another province, than Sarang steals the follower back over to another battle). Also helps against lock down decks (Accidental Confession, Quiet Transaction and Delayed Arrival) which is a bane to Follower decks. Also helps to build up Unicorn Clan Commander numbers, which still lack enough to field a deck. I give this guy three piles of wood from a wood chuck that could chuck wood.

Utaku Lishan - Another set and another Paragon. This one kicks Utaku Eun-ju out of any non-honor paragon build. In fact, Lishan's only downfall is she doesnt gain honor for the honor switch deck (and 5 HR for non-battle maiden box). But it honestly doesn't matter. Siege Volley up to an 8F guy on the attack? Check. Cast Aside the Weak and weaken your opponents other personalities? Check. Strength of Purity up to 8F on the attack? Check. Can react with multiple Lishans at once? Double check. Against honor, she will probably not be as effective, but still a good stat line of 5F for 7 gold. I award her two pounds of flesh that she will be carving out of her opponents.

Celestial Sword of the Unicorn exp
- Probably worth the include in tool boxing with Imperial Gift, but I don't see this being better than Cursed Relic or Wyrmbone katana. Late game it might be more force but considering it only destroys cards without attachments or is just a bow only personalities with attachments I think I will rather play the other two for the versatility they provide.

Flaking Unit - A decent cavalry follower that doesn't have a range attack? Surely you jest! This guy is great. Besides being more send home with JEK, it also can target your guys and be self defense against other people's move in. (Opponent moves in to your battle and rather than risk the Know no Fear you can move yourself to another province. 4F for 7 gold is a little behind the curve (5F or 6 gold cost would have been more appropriate) but this still gives follower commanders something they desperately need.

Deep Snows and Two Fronts are both either too conditional to be used or just plain terrible. All in all it was a so-so set, and with the exception of a few cards was not what we needed in order to improve on our current clan standings.

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Ide Yesugei
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Fri Apr 06, 2012 10:53 pm

To start: I disagree on the assessment of deep snows as it basically turns off more back. With so many send home actions being a aprt of our suites in both shugenja and JEK this cards reaction timing is a staple and stay out card. Also it combos well with Brave new World to say if you follow you show up bowed.

AS a terrain it has some issues but all in all probably the best terrain for pony that has many uses.
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Moto Seals
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Fri Apr 06, 2012 11:55 pm

Ide Yesugei wrote:To start: I disagree on the assessment of deep snows as it basically turns off more back. With so many send home actions being a aprt of our suites in both shugenja and JEK this cards reaction timing is a staple and stay out card. Also it combos well with Brave new World to say if you follow you show up bowed.

AS a terrain it has some issues but all in all probably the best terrain for pony that has many uses.
I disagree. I just dont see this making the cut over Heart of Darkness if you are going to run a terrain. If it worked on a personality as they moved it, I would run it, but you are basing on the POSSIBILITY they move in. Or just run another send home card if you are worried about them moving in.
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MotoKCi
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Sat Apr 07, 2012 12:13 am

Nice read, enjoyed the assessment.

I am particularly disappointed with Junpei Exp being in the same set as the new SH, they are so terrible together, making Junpei into a blank 5f for 6g cav. But he's still playable (sadly), as ki Chang would be even worse.

I think two front will require more testing, but my gut feel is it's not worth the card off your hand, when we don't even have space for things like Gold and Steel and sundering Strike for many decks.
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Ide Yesugei
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Sat Apr 07, 2012 11:46 am

Moto Seals wrote:
Ide Yesugei wrote:To start: I disagree on the assessment of deep snows as it basically turns off more back. With so many send home actions being a aprt of our suites in both shugenja and JEK this cards reaction timing is a staple and stay out card. Also it combos well with Brave new World to say if you follow you show up bowed.

AS a terrain it has some issues but all in all probably the best terrain for pony that has many uses.
I disagree. I just dont see this making the cut over Heart of Darkness if you are going to run a terrain. If it worked on a personality as they moved it, I would run it, but you are basing on the POSSIBILITY they move in. Or just run another send home card if you are worried about them moving in.
I was seeing Heart of Darkness becoming more of a card to lock out the other guys heart of darkness. Against crab that goes kill the scout who locks out terrains and drop this immediately. I think this card as a stand alone is less than HoD or Ancient Feud but the reaction timing window on its drop means superior tempo on a terrain that can be played without presence.
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Shinjo Dalu
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Mon Apr 09, 2012 11:45 am

Deep Snows is a very interesting terrain for me, it seems tricksy and unpredictable, and indeed combos well with a lot of the Unicorn actions, but its relatively limited in its impact on the game, leaving me in two minds about it.

Often, you will see a player slow playing, or setting up a terrain to have a big impact, and for that reason I can see this card being very useful, especially as the big terrains that are around are most effective played late in a battle. But, if a player is being that obvious about it, you should have ample time to play your own terrain (HoD, Ancient Feud, Hard Pressed, or whatever).

If I was playing a huge amount of send home, which is one way to do it (I will open that can of worms in a different topic), then I could see myself being talked into playing this.

As it stands, I am not going to play this card, mostly cause my guys bow too, which is annoying for stuff like skipping or just regular move in, but I will be keeping an eye on it.
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MotoKCi
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Mon Apr 09, 2012 3:39 pm

I just cannot find a spot for Deep Snow in my decks post EoW.

This card have a lot of potential, because it can be devastating against the calculative players, taking up the terrain slot at reaction speed.

The problem is the actual effect of the terrain is quite substandard. Basically a bow when you send them home, the opponent gets the choice to move in if he have sufficient unbows, which is quite marginal. Unless i play JEK, i find sendhomes to be quite pointless, because the opposition retains all their strength in the last battles, and if they are decks that are devastated by send homes (i.e. big units), they will play move ins, simple as that.

Increasingly, i cut Kinto from my decks, he may be one of our best, but with so many move in options and Know no Fears, you are setting up for fail.
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Shinjo Dalu
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Mon Apr 09, 2012 3:56 pm

The Terrain that was previewed with the Lion stuff, Thick Marsh is insane, it circumvents a lot of the negation to bow. I would strongly consider that over Deep Snows.
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