Jesse is back with Designing a Strategy Card Game Part 2. This week he discusses the core framework for a faction, alongside using math to help develop statistical value for your cards.
Written by: Matthew Greenleaf
Eat Your Tokens: A Sularia Nationals Tournament Report
Before Nationals this year I went on record saying Nationals would be won in deck building. The format was so new and power levels were more theory than practice. No one really knew what was best in this new world where you need to worry about 4 match-ups instead of 2. That means the meta as a whole contains 16 matchups instead of 3. After winning the whole thing I think that was true.
I played a Protoan list whose main goal was not to move as fast as possible. My deck building ethos was generate so much free value that victory becomes inevitable. Even going into the tournament I did not know if this was the right way to approach it. Traditionally you won in Sularia by going as fast as you can. I am not saying Synthien should try to go faster than the Jotune but there was always little value in being the second fastest Synthien deck. Protoan changes all of that.
No card produces more free value than Agropholid Hatchery. With that as the founding principle building the deck becomes much easier. If we are hoping to rely on tokens to out value our opponents than there are actually 2 goals we have to pursue. The first and obvious goal is we need to make as many tokens as possible. The second goal is actually the more important one because it is easier to overlook. After generating these tokens we need to maximize the ways we can translate them into a concrete advantage. Level zero of this goal is maxing out on 4 Blood Lusts. Level one is running two Metamorphosis Chambers and two Ashfall Plains to have early surrender outlets for Tricentis and also pull double duty allowing you to cash in excess tokens for advantages in combat or resources. Level two is including 3 Materox and 2 Parasitex to gain value even in the face of loss. All these layers build an impressive value engine that takes time but output ridiculous amounts of damage.
As I said I liked my chances but was very concerned about fast decks. Right out of the gate I had to face off against the reigning Nationals Champion Dustin. That made me nervous but I was glad to see him on an Exsularian list and not a Kyzr Hekaton list closer to what he won last year with. The Exsularian also want to play a longer game and most of their removal is 1 for 1 so in general I like the match-up. Things to look out for are they are good at attacking sites outside of combat and they can generate surprising value from their combatants activated abilities. My deck did its best impression of an aggro deck and I was through round 1 with a win.
Round two I was up against the other Kansas City competitor Logan and it was a mirror match. Being the slightly slower Protoan deck is especially critical in the mirror match. The early aggression from things like Syrana are too easy to shut down by It’s a Trap. Even without having the answer their window of effectiveness is so narrow they quickly become bad top decks. Being slower and more focused on free value you will often find yourself with more tokens or at least more things to do with them. This match-up also highlighted the strength Disruption. There is so much token on token blocking that a Blood Lust advantage might as well be the game if it lasts any length. Having even just 2 Disruptions was pivotal to winning the Blood Lust arms race at instant speed.
Round three I was paired down and was playing against a newer player with a Synthien combatants list that was just too fair to fight against the free token spigot turning on consistently on turn 2. The Synthien match-up some people like because they see Satellite Network Facility as a breaker. While it can be, I think that as your plan A is short sighted. Despite being slower than the fastest decks tokens still usually end the game before round 7. Also Materox and Parasitex are there specifically to take advantage of tokens dying. Also Mount Killara comes down a turn sooner to consolidate your strength onto a smaller number of big combatants to finish out the game.
Round 4 I played against my play test partner Aidan with his Kyzr to Skobn combo deck. There is not much I can hope to do against a turn 2 or 3 Skobn but I dodged that bullet and won with a stronger mid game. An interesting card in the mirror match is Carapace Dome. Dome is a card that if played tactically can win you races where their damage output doubles yours but it just does not matter because of the hardened and lair keywords.Carapace Dome is an excellent choice when it comes to racing your opponent.
The Top 4
The Semis was a rematch against Aidan who I had just played. Again without a fast Kyzr hand I just out-valued the other Protoan deck. At this point I am pretty thankful for just how good my deck is in the mirror match since it to this point was half my matches. The finals are next and they are against Jasper who won the first ever Sularia tournament back at Great Plains Game Festival in 2016.
Jasper is on a Synthien Combatants list. Our games came down to both of us dead at the end of several of them. Disruption was again surprisingly useful just shutting down late Master Mining Programs forcing him to fight harder for his Sularium. They (Synthien) have to spend sularium for all of their sources of damage so any way you can fight that helps. Some games they will generate too much for the 2 lost to matter but when it does matter it can give you multiple turns of breathing room. At this point I was very happy with my choice of tactics in 4 Mind Shell, 2 It’s A Trap, and 2 Disruption. When the dust settled I had won the finals 3 to 1.
To win there is always an element of luck and I had that in spades. I had favorable match-ups across the tournament and dodged my worst possible match-up of Jotune decks. I also drew like a boss which makes things easy. The Blood Lust showed up for me and so did early tokens in the form of Hatcheries and Tricentis. All in all Nationals was a great event and I really feel I learned something about the game from playing in it. It was for value to chalk up a win against tempo.
Written by: Jesse Bergman
September of 2018 has been one heckuva busy month as we prepare to launch Reign of Terror to each of you on October 2, 2018. For those of you that have pre-ordered the product, your packages will be sent out by Friday of this week, and you should receive your products by the 2nd. If you have any questions regarding your pre-order, please fill out a submission form, and we will respond to each of your requests as fast as possible.
What you can find in this update:
The Good, The Bad, and The Savage – Development Update
Reign of Terror – Omega Release
Alpha Program – October Promo Cards
Escalation Series: Pack 8 – Card Update
The Good, The Bad, and The Savage Development Update
The Good, the Bad, and the Savage are progressing to the final stages of development. We will begin final Q&A proofing of the print documents for the final print file to be sent to our print partner.
We received all of the final art pieces in the last week, and we have posted them on our social media channels. But check out Sularium Depot below! We love what our artists have put into the Exsularian pieces, and The Good, the Bad, and the Savage is turning out to be one of our most stunning sets yet!
“Sularium Depot” by Filip Depot
The Good, The Bad, and The Savage ships to you on November 6th, 2018.
Reign of Terror Omega Release
Reign of Terror will release and be ready for Omega game play next week on Tuesday, October 2nd, 2018. There have been many updates to cards and rules for Omega play. We will be updating our rules document in the coming weeks, to prepare for the new rules. When that document has been released we will update each of you through this blog. The new rules document will be available to download to your electronic device. We are also looking to compile a comprehensive FAQ regarding cards, if you have a question regarding a specific card's interaction please let us know so we can add it to our website.
Alpha Program October Promo Cards
October brings a brand new release of Promo Cards for October. This month introduces two impressive new combatants from the Reign of Terror and The Good, the Bad, and the Savage releases.
These cards will be available on our website for $5 per card per play set.
Escalation Series: Pack 8
Four brand new cards make their way into the escalation series for October, and pack number 8 brings a powerful new combatant and exciting new tactics the core factions. These are cards that deck builders will not want to miss regardless of whatever faction you love the most!
Ashgar's Duty is a card designed by national champion Dustin Rogers. He wanted a card that gave the Jotune a proven ability QUICK. As a two construction cost card, Ashgar's Duty is not an automatic inclusion in Jotune player's decks, but there are specific game archetypes that will benefit most from a card like Ashgar's Duty.
With a fairly high threshold cost, Ashgar’s duty gives the Jotune a powerful way to finish off their opponent in the later stages of the game.
Ashgar's Duty is a card that will see play in competitive formats, and we cannot wait to see how it fits into your Jotune builds.
Last month we introduced Simiann a new combatant that uses Energize as a reliable defensive option. This month brings another Energize combatant to the table, and this one serves as a valuable aggressive combatant for those Synthien aggro lists. Last month's post discusses how energize operates using Simiann. The same rules apply to Juggernaut Mauler with a much higher ceiling.
As a two construction cost card, the Mauler lives in an excellent sularium cost point in their combatant curve. While Hydra Reaver offers a consistent and affordable six sularium combatant, the Juggernaut Mauler pushes the ceiling of power to new heights, extending even beyond the almighty Hekaton Warhulk
Bellowing Roar is a brand new tactic for the Protoan and offers an excellent control piece for the faction. Players will be able to leverage Bellowing Roar by playing the more substantial Protoan threats. As a one construction cost tactic, fitting Bellowing Roar fits into a player's deck easily.
The drawbacks to Bellowing Roar exist in two different spaces. First, players have to decide what four cards of their sixty in the tactic and condition department could be cut to make room for it. Additionally, players have to play the more powerful combatant suite in order to turn on the card and provide a useful result. While Bellowing Roar has a similar effect to Centropolis in the Synthien, it does not offer the consistency and cards such as Evasion are much more profitable in the exchange.
From The Rubble
From the Rubble is an exciting new card for the Exsularian. As a two construction cost card, From The Rubble provides an excellent new tactic that gives the Exsularian another valuable control piece. Synergizing nicely with Anarchy mechanics, From the Rubble allows an Exsularian player to pull valuable high powered sites from the discard pile. From The Rubble can grab your opponent's sites or your own.
It does come with one major drawback in that the site's defense is reduced therefore making it easier for your opponent to remove. Additionally, the Anarchy package tends to push construction cost limits to near break point and From the Rubble doesn't alleviate this. When deck building with From the Rubble players will actively have to find a way to fit the cards all together in their 60 cards and 90 points.
We hope you are all enjoying the upcoming content. We are very excited to get the Protoan into your hands and hope you share with us your decks and favorite cards from the set on social media and elsewhere!
Until next time, see you on the battlefield.
Written by: Jesse Bergman
Wow, did this month go fast! It's hard to believe it's time to write another update to all of you! August saw some exciting new things going on and sets us up for a whirlwind to the end of the year. It's like the precursor to a big storm, you can see the clouds rolling in and the wind is picking up, but you don't quite know what all is in store!
The Battle Begins: Full-Art Booster Pack went on sale on August 2nd and many of you have taken advantage of them and we have had strong sales to start. If you are already an existing player of Battle for Sularia: The Card Game, then you do not want to miss out on this opportunity to bling out your deck. These items are selling quickly and when they are gone we will discontinue them for a while. They may return at a later date, but that will all be determined by your overall demand for the product.
What you can find in this update:
Full-Art Booster Pack information
Reign of Terror development/production update
Escalation Series: Pack 7 - Card Update
Alpha Program July Promo Cards
Full-Art Booster Pack Information
Full-Art Booster Packs were released on August 2nd, 2018 and come in two different product offerings. The individual packs can be purchased for $5.99 or if you want to try out randomized drafting of Battle for Sularia: The Card Game, then you can purchase our 4-Player Draft Pod package for $89.99.
We won't go into full detail on the packs here if you would like to read more about them, head over to our blog post on the packs and get a complete rundown and determine which packs are best for you!
These packs are a web exclusive offer and will sell out fairly soon. Re-order of the packs will not occur immediately, but they may return later this year or next.
Reign of Terror Development Update
Reign of Terror development has been closed. We are in process of placing orders with our printers and we are on track for an early October release. We will begin showcasing more about the release as we get closer to that fateful October date. We will continue to take pre-orders right here on our site. Once the pre-orders sell-through, we will open up a wave 2 for those of you that missed out early on.
If you are on the fence about ordering Reign of Terror, now is the perfect time to get in and make sure that you recieve your copy as it releases.
"Subterranean Lair" by Ascary Lazos
Escalation Series: Pack 7
The Alpha Program heads into pack 7 and the back half of the escalation series release. This pack introduces some powerful new cards, that need your attention. The idea behind the Alpha Program is for you our fans, to get an opportunity to try out new card designs before they are released into the final form. Playing games with these cards and providing us with feedback helps shape the final version of the game. Feedback can be provided directly through our feedback form found here at the Alpha Program page of this site!
Gods Among Men
This card represents a new design idea for condition cards. It functions in two separate ways. The first way is one in which the card gains tactical value in the form of playing the card in a similar fashion to the Mercenary card evasion. While the scope of Gods Among Men is limited to type 1 combatants, it further reinforces the theme we were building in The Battle Begins Starter Set.
When your opponent attempts to target your powerful type 1 combatants, Gods Among Men springs to the rescue to protect them from those effects, however, since it is also a condition card it provides a powerful ongoing effect that indicates that future and existing type 1 combatants cannot be defused by effects. This particular play pattern is narrow, but offers protection from some of the most powerful cards in the format such as Dead on Arrival, and Sularium Tactical Assault Beam.
Simiann is a backer designed card from our Blood, Profit, and Glory Kickstarter. Backer Jim O'Flaherty, who also designed Lady Worgana, came to us with an idea to build a powerful robot that was versatile and flexible. Jim was working on a self-learning AI that each iteration brought a new and improved intelligence. We latched on to Jim's idea and created a whole new keyword for this type of mechanism. ENERGIZE is a dual-modality ability that allows players to invest sularium one action at a time to do one of the two following abilities:
This combatant gets +1/-1 until the end of turn.
This combatant gets -1/+1 until the end of turn.
This sort of flexibility combined with Specialist makes Simiann a force to be reckoned with on the battlefield. Many users ask how he functions, his attack value is facing the limiter of his defense value because if at anytime a combatant has a defense value of 0 it dies. However, on the defensive side, you may continue to make investments that would reduce a combatants attack value to 0 or below 0, while the defense value continues to climb. So, if you have 9 sularium, then you can invest 9 sularium into Simiann's -1/+1 ability to modify his stats to -7/15 making him a nearly impenetrable wall for one of your opponent's combatants.
VIRUS has represented itself as a powerful ability that gives a player the ability to reduce incoming damage or potentially kill off major threats on an opponents board. VIRUS is a dangerous ability that opponents need to respect. A Protoan player has so many proactive ways to net value with Gorgarid while impacting their opponent's board state. Gorgarid is the type of combatant that provides that complete upside of combatant removal/reduction, with an affordable package in their decks.
With a base attack of 2 and a base defense of 3 Gorgarid can focus by dealing 2 damage to a combatant on defense, and then die from combat damage or through a sacrifice outlet to put the two infection counters on that combatant, and effectively deal 4 damage that turn. Dealing 4 damage for only 3 sularium and 1 construction cost is an excellent trade in the game.
Hideout continues the theme of Influence matters. This time synergizing with Ruffian combatants. Hideout at 6 influence requires some work to get into play, especially when many constructed games only play to turn 6 or turn 7. Combined with Power Broker, Exsularian players could see this site as early as turn 4, giving them plenty of opportunities to build up powerful sites, but the less obvious play is the impact that Power Broker and Hideout can provide to playing tactic and condition cards with higher threshold values.
A player also gets additional value by being able to deploy their Ruffian combatants into the hidden zone reducing the number of opportunities that a player has to interact with those combatants. Powerful Ruffians such as Tunnel Rat become very difficult for an opponent to deal with and handle when they are in the hidden zone. Additionally, with a sularium generation of 2, it provides a much needed sularium boost to play more expensive Exsularian combatants.
With a base attack of 3, it is single-handedly one of the most powerful Exsularian sites and a prime target for It's a Trap. Additionally with a hardy 8 defense, an opponent will need to commit serious firepower to the sites removal.
August Alpha Program Promo Cards
This month's Alpha Program Promo Cards are an absolute must-have for any Jotune or Synthien player's collection. For those of you tournament players who have asked how to update cards we have errata'd, then Centropolis will give you an outlet to do just that! These cards will remain in the store until September 18th, 2018!
One last little bit of information, if you didn't see on the Full-Art Booster Pack blog post we have added a checklist that covers every card we've released to date. It is up to date and includes the current Alpha Edition promo cards. If you are attempting to be a collector then this checklist is a must have!
Download The Checklist!
Until next time, see you on the battlefield!
Written by: Jesse Bergman
We are back again with a brand new update regarding what you can expect this month in the world of Sularia. July is in full swing and as the dog days of summer descend on us, now is a great time to grab a cold drink and read all about Battle for Sularia: The Card Game!
The Good, The Bad, and The Savage an Exsularian faction pack is now available for pre-order on our website, and so far you guys have all rocked it out of the park by pre-ordering and showing your support. We have a little less than two weeks left on the early pre-order and then we are moving on to to the release of the full art booster packs. If you want a more detailed look at our release schedules please check out this post here: 2018 Roadmap
What you can find in this update:
- The Good, The Bad, and The Savage Pre-Order
- Reign of Terror development/production update
- Alpha Program/Omega Program release schedule change
- Escalation Series Pack 6 Card Update
- Alpha Program July Promo Cards
The Good, The Bad, and The Savage Pre-Order
The Good, the Bad, and the Savage are still on pre-order until July 20th. At that time we will be shutting down the discounted pre-order price and the exclusive promo cards, which includes an early released play set of Disruption. If you simply don't want to pre-order we understand and The Good, the Bad, and the Savage will be available for general release in November.
We will continue to provide development and production updates over the coming months regarding this release.
Reign of Terror Development Update
Reign of Terror is progressing along nicely. We are currently receiving the final illustrations, which we will be put into final template cards. At that point, we will run each card through our quality assurance process to look for typos and template issues.
We anticipate that Reign of Terror will be sent to the printer by mid-August and will be shipping to us by mid-September. Because of the process, we are using we have reduced our shipping times substantially and are able to deliver this product in early October is very doable. Of course, if we can speed up the timeline up we will and as always we will do our best to avoid any potential setbacks or delays.
"Deathspore Forest" by Ascary Lazos
Alpha Program/Omega Program Release Schedule Change
We are halfway through the first year of the Alpha Program as we laid it out last December. We are looking to make a few changes in how Alpha Program and Omega Program releases going forward. Up to this point we have released Alpha Program packs and promo's on the first Tuesday of every month.
This release schedule seemed to be working well when it was only the Alpha Program. As we step into the future and Omega Program products begin releasing monthly as well we feel that we need to remain focused at the start of each month on the general release model. What this means for you is that we will be transitioning the monthly release schedule as follows:
The first Tuesday of each month: Omega Program Release
The third Tuesday of each month: Alpha Program Release
Now some of you may already be asking how does this impact the Alpha Edition promo cards. This is a good question, and we have been so very pleased by the response and support for those cards over the last few months. We will be continuing with those cards but they will be released to our web store on the third Tuesday of every month and will be removed when they are replaced by the new card on the following month.
These programs are still a learning curve for us here at Punch-It and we want to make sure that the releases make sense and work within our timelines. The Alpha Program and the Omega Program represent a lot of work for us and we need to manage that work as best as possible.
Of course, we always listen to our community and your feedback is greatly appreciated on these sorts of items. Please feel free to jump into our Facebook community or sign up on Slack to interact with us and let us know your thoughts on these changes. You can always comment below this post as well.
Escalation Series Pack 6
July brings the newest command pack to be released into the Alpha Program. This is the mid-point for the series and with it comes a whole batch of Mercenary cards to add to your deck building arsenal.
The Mercenary faction has always had a big impact on Sularia. Lone Wolf is no exception to this. Many factions find themselves in situations where if they had a powerful combat trick they could leverage advantage in an early stage of the game to potentially set their opponents back. Lone Wolf allows each and every faction early game threats to be site killers.
This is balanced against the cards scope, which only allows it to be played on an individual combatant who is attacking a site alone. This means that while you send a joint strike force of combatants at another site on an opponents board, you are also only sending one combatant at a second site. It is a risk that you are telegraphing your combat trick to your opponent and they may be able to defend it appropriately.
With the Exsularian faction's release on the world of Sularia, there are now two factions who are very good at deploying their threats into the hidden zone. An in some cases those threats may never leave. One of the more powerful Synthien plays is to put Projectus Immunis into the hidden zone and give one of your combatants each round a permanent immunity to damage.
Exposed entering the fray helps players when their meta is running rampant with powerful hidden zone plays. Its ability is simple in practice but can have a big impact on how games resolve. Players can use Exposed to pull a Solomon out of hiding or a Spirit Warrior, both significant threats that can have big impacts on the game as it goes on.
With skillful play Exposed can even get that projectus out of hiding, and help make sure the threat can be managed.
I have already done a write up on Crazy Joe for our Reign of Terror Kickstarter campaign, but I'll spend a moment recapping that here today for those of you that may have missed the article. If you are a fan of the fiction you know that Joe is one heckuva crazy mercenary. He has all the big guns. Joe even set up his shop in the hollowed out husk of a Hekaton Warhulk. He pairs perfectly with Crazy Joe's Explosives to offer the ability to put out and remove two explosive counters, but the depth of his ability doesn't end there.
There are many powerful sites in the game that have activate abilities. Joe allows you two activations of those abilities for a major upswing. Sites like Metamorphosis Chamber, Ashfall Plains, and Hive of Cera in the Protoan. In the Exsularian second activations of Stockade can be decimating to a low sularium cost board state. Of course, we all want to live the dream of a second activation of Centropolis on the Synthien side, and even extra activations of Storm Citadel on the Jotune can have big game implications.
To us here at Punch-It Joe is the perfectly designed Mercenary card because it has impact and value in all factions at this stage of the game and can potentially get more powerful as the game evolves.
Disruption is a card that has a major impact on the game of Sularia. Up until the release of Disruption only one faction had an outlet for defusing condition cards. The Synthien card interference was a monster in the 2017 National format as it put opposing players behind the curve. Defusing an Art of War, or a Master Mining program had very large gameplay impacts.
As more and more conditions come out, it becomes important that a threat exists that helps prevent conditions from becoming the safest plays for an opponent. While they should remain safer than other cards on the battlefield such as sites or combatants, they should not be considered surefire guarantees for success in deck builds. Even if a player doesn't run Disruption, deck builders will now have to respect the existence of the card and its impact on gameplay.
July Alpha Program Promo Cards
With the Exsularian currently in pre-order, we only felt it was fitting that they be the feature of this month's promo cards. Solomon "The Pariah" and Zed "The Constable" both see a ton of play in Exsularian decks and we wanted to provide you with two of the factions heavy hitters for their inaugural release.
We hope you are all enjoying the summer months and still getting a few games of Sularia in, the back half of this year is loaded with exciting stuff from the full art boosters, to the release of both Reign of Terror and The Good, The Bad, and The Savage. We are releasing more information regarding 2018 Nationals in the coming months and we can't wait to see all of you at it and ready to do battle and claim the prize as the best.
Until next time, see you on the battlefield!
Written by: Jesse Bergman
Reign of Terror is coming in February of 2018 to Kickstarter. It is a brand new stand-alone expansion for the game Battle for Sularia. As fans of Battle for Sularia, this announcement should really get the juices flowing. If you have been following along with us on Instagram, Facebook, and Twitter then you have already started to see some of the artwork that has made its way to your desktop or device. If you have not, well what are you waiting for and join us there today!
Today's introductory article will reveal some of the 52 unique cards you will find in Reign of Terror. So grab your favorite beverage and let us jump right in.
Reign of Terror introduces two brand new factions to the world of Sularia. With it comes all new ways to defeat your opponents and to interact with the game. Reign of Terror brings two brand new factions into the fold.
If you want to learn more about the Protoan menace, read on, otherwise, if you want the cards and the ideas behind the Protoan to remain unspoiled, close your browser now.
First, a very brief glimpse into the Protoan, They were a pre-Fracture design, by Hyperionex, developed to gain power and authority in the world of Sularia. Unfortunately, for Hyperionex, the fracture happened before the bio-weapon, codename Protoan could be unleashed on the world. Now in modern-day Sularia the Protoan project has sat dormant, buried deep in a lab, undiscovered by the inhabitants of the world. So everyone thought…
A small group of Exsularian tunnel rats while digging around discovered a pre-Fracture facility from Hyperionex. Without regard, and with hopes of ancient treasures, they opened the doors and dived deeper and deeper into the facility. They have unleashed hell upon the world and now the Protoan are on the loose.
The Protoan gave us a great opportunity to explore this idea of what a bioweapon could look like if it was a creature instead of a microorganism. The answer to us was that it would have to be semi-intelligent and be very primal in its behavior. While early Protoan's were exactly that, what they have become is something far greater. Led by a hive mind mentality found in Earth's ants, and bees. Protoan hierarchy calls for an Alpha or Queen and many soldiers or workers all working for the greater good of their colony.
To translate this information into gameplay you will find many of the Protoan's are type 1 combatants, which represent an almost a mythical power to them. Many in the world of Sularia have heard the tales of the Ashfall Plains, but very few have actually ever seen a Protoan. The first of which we will show today is SKOBN "Mythical Beast." SKOBN co-designed in part with our super backer of Blood, Profit, and Glory Scott Bean. He is an owner-operator of a great game shop in Fremont Neb. called Mythic Affinity.
SKOBN introduces two brand new mechanical ideas that you will find permeate throughout the design of the Protoan. First, you will find a powerful new keyword called CHALLENGE. Challenge allows a player to force a single combatant to defend the challenge regardless of the defender combatant's current status. This means that even those combatants that are activated or exhausted are not safe from SKOBN’s ability. SKOBN takes this ability and pushes it to the limit, with the option to challenge as many combatants as you so choose.
Second, SKOBN is now the most expensive combatant in terms of sularium cost found in the game. Fourteen sularium is a doozy and many of you are probably already asking, can the Protoan make Synthien levels of sularium? My answer... most of the time no; However, they are very capable of reducing cost because the Protoan player can leverage their presence on the battlefield to reduce SKOBN’s cost. If a Protoan player can muster enough sularium and token combatants on the battlefield SKOBN can become the most powerful and least expensive combatant in the game.
If SKOBN’s ability didn’t tip you off to another staple in Protoan design, then the next card should really hammer home the idea of token production. While different Protoan decks will leverage tokens in different ways, more on that later, the token generation cards are the backbone to the strategies the player wants to use. Protoan combatants and sites offer some awesome ways to produce them, and the first that we will share with you today is a powerful site, so feast your eyes on Agropholid Hatchery.
This site is the perfect tempo card for setting up your SKOBN plays. In order to help the Protoan maintain tempo, we needed to consider how the go wide philosophy of attacking with them comes to be a reality. With the continuous output of small Protoans tokens, these one attack, one defense combatants individually are really nothing to be worried about. However, savvy battle commanders will know that they present an ever-growing menace that can quickly overwhelm and consume your entire board.
With an influence cost of 2 and a reasonably solid defense of 5, Hatchery serves as an excellent card for the two construction cost you will pay to have it in the deck. On top of that Hatchery operates by producing the first token combatant the turn it is played. This combatant factory comes online fast and hard and forces an opponent to deal with it quickly.
While your opponent is trying to manage the Hatchery, and fearing for the impending arrival of SKOBN, another powerful combatant comes into the fray. Hive Queen, is yet another token production component.
While she herself isn't that powerful with only 3 attack value and 3 defense value, she brings the pain in yet another two 1/1 tokens. For a meager cost of four sularium, we are producing three new combatants on the battlefield! Hive Queen is a tempo card much in the same light as the hatchery. She continues to help build a board presence and offers a great opportunity to push your forces over the edge against the opposition.
Opponents have to start worrying by turn 4 or 5 when the Protoan have produced 4-7 1/1 combatants. All of a sudden, that SKOBN is very much in the range of sularium production to come crashing onto the battlefield.
The Protoans, as mentioned before, are very primal by nature. They do have some rules of society that from an outsider’s perspective seem somewhat unruly and out of control, but in the hands of a capable battle commander, they are a force to be reckoned with. Rite of Domination introduces just how unwieldy they can be at times.
The beauty of Rite of Domination is that a card like Hive Queen with only 3 attack and 3 defense can quickly become more powerful. In fact, if she can dominate the two tokens she produced herself she is easily a 7/7. If you can continue to push out tokens at an alarming rate, you may find more value out of sacrificing them to the Queen through Rite of Domination, it won’t take long before she is a real menace that rivals the greatest threats on Sularia. The savagery of the Rite is ever present and the Protoan player does need to be careful as once they initiate a Rite there is no reversing it and every turn they have to start fighting each other. The last thing you want is to have two key Protoans fighting each other.
That wraps things up for us this time; this is the first of many upcoming spoilers for the Protoan. We cannot wait to share them with each of you in greater detail and hear your reactions. The Protoan are unique to the world of Sularia and will invigorate both gameplay and deck building both with and against them.