Edit: Noting base repair from Brick Thief and Resist on Brick Thief. Thanks @cstick!
Well, I did not expect that. I guess I knew the Nether Drain had to come; it was the most efficient way to put off Meta for a turn. But now he’s given me outs to kill River and bring in Rook next turn. Or I have the space to bring in my own Tech II and do it that way. I’m obviously going to play Dark Pact, and I need to see my Technician draw before I can make any other decisions. But he left a low-level Garth in play to try to tempt me away from his Tech I and Tech II if I can even break his defense.
The Technician draw is a Brick Thief. Not bad for a cheap patroller that damages his Tech II. That leads me toward setting up for Earthquake. Not as good as a NF, with max Vandy’s power to doom and River’s power to sideline. But not bad.
Dark Pact drew me into my second Dark Pact (great!) and a Two Step (I wish it was Harmony).
It’s a Timely messenger! All right! Some Haste! And Thunderclap! That would be perfect if River was already dead. With Two Step… maybe I should try to kill Vandy instead? Is that possible?
Actually, Vandy’s a 4/4 thanks to Nether Drain, with the possibility to doom more stuff. And with his Tower, his HE essentially hits for 4 and his BC for 5. I can kill whoever I want. But my patrollers cost 2 total, so I can’t play them and Rook and Thunderclap and Two Step and level Vandy.
Think it through:
Option1: Level Vandy (2) and doom TM and Skeleton. TM at 3/3. River trades into HE… no, she doesn’t kill it.
Option2: Level Vandy (2) and doom TM and Sk. Brick Thief (1). River casts Two Step (2) on Brick Thief and TM. TM at 5/5. TM takes out HE and surives with 1 HP. River trades into BC (TM dies with Two Step, Garth to Lv. 5, 2/4). Rook (2). And now only $1 left. Not enough to Thunderclap the skeleton out of the way so Vandy can step through.
Option3: Level Vandy (2) and doom TM and Sk. Vandy (5/5) takes out HE and survives with 1 HP. River trades into BC and dies (Garth to Lv. 5, 2/4). Rook (2) and Thunderclap (2) skeleton out of the way. Early Brick Thief (1) hits a building. Now doomed TM can take out Tower or Tech I. (1) for early OB. Not enough for Two Step in there, and not enough attack to take out Garth. But that puts BT, OB, and Rook between Vandy his Skeleton (and Zane, and sharks), so he’ll have a hard time taking her out, and he’ll probably have to rebuild the tower. But he’ll get whatever he techs (Bear or Tiger) at the end of my turn for for free from his discard pile. If he summons Cal, it’ll be an invisible Stalker.
Option4: Level Vandy (2) and doom TM and Sk. Have River sideline HE. TM trades with BC. Build Tech II (STR) (4). Brick Thief and OB (2). Patrol Vandy in Technician, BT in Scav, OB in SQL? No Two Step, but set up for EQ down the line, potential Meta next turn?
Option5: Level Vandy (2) and doom TM and Sk. Fetch and play Soul Stone on TM (3). TM (4/4) trades with HE+Tower, regenerates to 3/3 (but will die next turn). No way to get Rook out without trading River, but that’s $2. Not enough to Clap. Few patrollers.
Option6: Vandy fetches and uses Shadow Blade (4) on BC. Build Tech II (STR) (4). Have River and Vandy patrol? Doesn’t leave much defense, but forces him to work a bit harder to level Garth for the free play.
! Option7: Have Vandy trade into BC+Tower (Garth at Lv. 5, 2/4). Rook (2) and Thunderclap (2) the BC and Skeleton out of the way. OB (1) and Brick Thief (1) (hitting a building). River and TM team up to take out Garth (levels to Rook) or Tech II (if hit by BT); TM dies and River 3/3. Two Step OB and BT (to 4/4, 4/3) or level Rook to 3/5 if Garth is dead. Great! But I’m giving up on Metamorphosis. He’ll have a 3/3 and a 1/1 to hit back with, plus 2 (probably 3) from Garth. (But not Zane or sharks! 'Cause no Tech II and Garth!)
! Option8: Same as above, but have Two Step hit OB and TM. Have BT hit Tower (setting up for later EQ). TM and River still take out Tech II, but now TM survives as a 3/2 on the back line.
Option9: Same as above, but BT hits Tower or Tech I, and TM takes out Tower or Tech I by himself. River can hit Tech II or Tech I for 3, but won’t kill it. But if I Rook is alive when I draw my next Bird’s Nest, the birds become an alternate way to take out Tech. But if I’m not playing Tech II now, isn’t it better to take his Tech II before he can use it?
I have to think about either 1) what would help me the most or 2) what would annoy him the most. The Tech II would probably help me most long-term. But I might not have long-term, and breaking his Tech II would definitely be the most annoying.
So Op7 or Op8. Either way, OB in SQL as a 4/4+a means he’ll have to fight through, and won’t have enough juice to kill Rook (unless he suicides Garth to free Zane and Sharks). He’ll almost certainly do that to get rid of OB and Two Step. That would straight up kill the damaged TM. Another HE or StW would take out BT. But if Messenger’s not alive, then when he kills OB, BT will drop back to 2/1 anyway. (Same as other situation.) So the real question is: what’s best if he doesn’t take out OB: OB (4/4), BT (2/1), TM (3/2) or OB (4/4) and BT (4/3). 4 atk is an awesome number, but it’s just not as good as 3 bodies. So Option 8 it is.
Without Tech II, it might not be worth it to him to max Garth, because he’d have to Tech in new Tech I to get use out of the maxband ('cause his discard’s empty except for what he techs). So say he does suicide midband Garth and BC into OB and killing TM. Then he has plenty for Zane+sharks (7). Shark+skeleton takes out Rook, putting Zane at 3. Max Zane for 3 to kill BT (get gold or card) Shark takes out River. Board wipe, and him with 4/4 Zane, maybe another worker. All my heroes will be dead on my turn or his, so none coming back next turn. That’ll probably be game. I guess I have to hope that won’t happen!
Can I stop it with alternate patrol? If Rook is on the back line, he could hit BT (in tech) with midband Zane for the draw. Then shark could take out River, and shark+skeleton takes out Rook to max Zane. Just as bad. Better to put Rook in Technician in case. This is probably the best move for me, because cstick is probably not aggressive enough to do this; but if he is, it might win him the game? (Or at least force me to finally drop a unit and build Tech II.)
What if I don’t Two Step (more cards for me), sacrifice TM, and level Rook to 3? With OB in SQL as a 2/2+a, it’ll die to BC. Max Garth for 2. Garth and skeleton team up to kill Rook, but Garth lives. Play a bunch of cards for $9 (or a few and float). This actually leaves Rook open to another ND, which would be like feeding Garth a free level; better to just float the gold. But Rook might be alive, and River would definitely be alive. Unless he still has that pesky Rampant Growth. This gives me a much weaker board position next turn, but a better hand (I hope), and more money, and more of a guarantee that I have at least one hero left in play. And I’d have a chance at Harmony+Appel Stomp, or Tenderfoot, or Turtle, so there’s still some value there.
What to tech in? I probably should have done Discord and another Two Step a while back. But I’m kinda feeling Starlets and Gargoyles now. And what about Boulder? How about Gargoyle and Discord?
Tech StartingHand Workers
Tech 2 card(s)
Get Paid - ($8)
Draw from Technician
Vandy casts Dark Pact; my base takes 2 and I draw 2 cards
Dark Pact and Two Step[/details]
Vandy casts a second Dark Pact; my base takes 2 more and I draw 2 more
Timely Messenger and Thunderclap[/details]
Recruit Timely Messenger for free (Thanks, River!)
Recruit Older Brother for 1 (Thanks, River!) - ($7)
Recruit Brick Thief for 1 (Thanks, River!); your Tech II takes 1 damage - ($6)
Vandy (4/4) trades with your Hooded Executioner because of Tower; Garth to Lv 5 (2/4)
Summon Garus Rook - ($4)
Rook casts Thunderclap, sidelining your Bone Collector and Skeleton - ($2)
Messenger hits your Tech II for 1, dying to Tower
River hits your Tech II for 3, destroying it again; your base takes 2 more damage, to 16 (like mine!); she takes 1 from the Tower
Discard 2, draw 4
[I]Squad Leader[/I]: Older Brother (2/2+a)
[I]Scavenger[/I]: Brick Thief (2/1, Resist 1)
[I]Technician[/I]: Garus Rook (2/4, Lv. 1)
- River Montoya (3/3, Lv. 5)
Base HP: 17
Tech I HP: 5
Heroes’ Hall HP: 4
- Hand: 4
- Deck: 8
- Disc: 9
- Gold: 2
- Workers: 8