Saturday, November 28, 2015

TEAM: Wu-ling Wanderers (Koris Team) Review Version 2.0

Wu-ling Wanderers (Koris Team)
Original Assessments in Gray from May 8, 2015, revised assessments in white

Portals - The portals are just so much fun! They add another layer on the game. Use them to Score. Use them to Slam. Use them to block line of sight. Use them to help guard your back. Use them to clog up your opponent's path. The possibilities are endless! I would add one huge extra to this too. Because of the way portals work, if you utilize them, it pretty much grants you an extra hex of movement (or possibly two if you jump from one to another). The more I play them/see them played, the more I think this is a great tactic to keep in mind and to develop as part of your team strategy.

Finally, Jacks that I can live with... - I love the fact that now, I can use one jack to place a portal, then use another jack to move one space, that becomes one space on the other side, then still Throw the ball. I think this is a huge boon for a jack-heavy team. I finally have some jacks that This is even more relevant if you are play with the Star Realm League rules where a Koris Jack could move 2 hexes and get a throw off.

Gotcha! - With the two Guards working together, or a Guard and a Jack working together, Gotcha! is fantastically powerful, even if you only have the Strength of a Corporation Guard. For a team with only two Guards, Gotcha! is more effectively used as a defensive tool I have learned. If you are playing the Nameless, no doubt it is offensive - Sticky Guard with Gotcha! stands beside the target, then the Hard Guard rushes him. But on the Koris, in my experience, it is a tool best used to guard Strike Zones and Threaten players who have the ball, or need to get the ball. Though, an occasional Gotcha! to hold someone for a Slam is always a good thing!

Maybe the four legs work independently? - Movement the same as a Forge Father is never good. Of course, because of the portals this is mitigated a good bit, but it is worth a mention, because... Movement 4 is bad. See above comments on Movement for a slight addendum to this.

One Striker - Want to paint a big target on someone's back? Make them the only Striker on the team. This will be the first person that gets killed on your team, and rightly so. Protect him... or use him as bait. :-) Still a big issue. You will get one, MAYBE two Rushes out of this guy against a good opposing player.

Portal Placing - Two things here: 1 - Until you get practiced with the Koris, the fact that placing a portal takes a full action from a Jack can really mess up your plans. 2 - You have to be thinking a few steps ahead to execute the Koris portals "Pitch perfectly". This is going to be a stumbling block for some newer players.

MVP Recommendations:

I am going to wait on this until I can see the Koris MVP and th other Season 5/6 MVPs are capable of. Still not used any MVPs with them, but they could definitely use Kryphos for sure! That guy is a literal and figurative monster!

I really enjoy playing these guys - I can't wait to have the actual models! They really open up a new level of game play, both you and your opponent. I think that the DB community is going to find a lot of interesting and innovative ways to use them. I might use them in our next league... we will see. I honestly believe that this team is going to be one of the teams that you are going to to get what you put into them. If you try them once or twice and decide you don't like them, that's cool. But if you are willing to put time into this team, I think the returns will be awesome! The play style needed to play them properly does not develop in a game or two, I can feel the understanding of how to use this team deepening each time they are on the Pitch in front of me. I seasoned Koris player is going to be a difficult player to stop, especially in a league environment.

B -
But definitely an "A" for fun factor!

Still an "A" for fun factor!

Tuesday, November 24, 2015

SIDELINE REPORT: Greenmoon Smackers vs Wu-ling Wanderers

This game was played with a specifc purpose in mind. I wanted to try out the new Jack rules that are in the Star Realms League Play Pack. So, I asked my opponent to choose a Jack-heavy team, as did I. I went with the Marauders and my opponent went with the Koris.
Orx Guard - Red, Goblin Jack - Orange, Koris Guard - Dark Blue, Koris Jack - Light Blue

I pulled the Home team for the Marauders. I decided to go with a highly aggressive setup on the center line. I wanted to get the Orx on the other side and see if I could wreck some ugly Koris face. I did put one goblin in the front line too, you know, for the ball. I also decided that with the portal movement the Koris can manage, I wanted to guard the 3-4 point Strikezone - two goblins and an Orx.

My opponent went with a similar setup in the 3-4 Point Strikezone. He chose to use two Jacks to Guard the extra point hexes in the 1-2 point zones too. And finally, he went with a Guard in the center, no doubt to try and attack the poor Marauders on his turn.

The first few Rushes saw the Orx and Goblins dominate. By the end of the third Rush, 5 Koris were off the Pitch and I had scored a 4 point Strike with a Goblin! My dice were above average for sure, and my opponent's dice were... awful.

The game began to balance out after that. The Wanderers came back on the Pitch slowly, but with the use of the portals and some luck, they did manage to score a 2 point Strike. My opponent did a good job of placing the portals and utilizing them. 

The Goblins began having butter fingers and flubbed some easy rolls. The Orx continued to beat down the other side, but more knocked down models than sent off the Pitch as the game moved along.

The final score was in the Marauder's favor, but just.

Thoughts on the game:
  • Orx are still big boys! They crush like it was Season One all the time!
  • Koris Movement 4 HAS TO be mitigated by the portals.
  • The Koris Striker is a huge target, and is taken off the pitch easily - use him for the big score and then pray he doesn't die.
  • Goblins Dash well... unless they don't.
  • The Koris Guards are better than I originally imagined.
  • Slamming to get the ball is usually better than trying to Steal.

Thoughts on the new Jack rules:
  • The new Jack rules will matter the most for teams with Jacks that have decent Strength. I think that the Teratons, Brokkrs (and I guess by extension the Forge Fathers), and the Crystallans will gain the most from these new rules. Being able to Slam with a 3+ Strength from 2-3 hexes away is a fantastic boon to these teams.
  • The all-Jack teams for instance, can only be improved by the rules of course. I am not sure it will make them more competitive though. Time and playing them will tell, but my gut says that it will not vastly improve them.
  • Void Siren Jacks! Um, a Running Interference Slam from 3 hexes away is crazy, crazy good!
  • Z'zor Jacks... makes the Z'zor Striker useless now.
  • The Sorak Jack will be improved by this change (like the Rebs needed another boost!).
  • Martian Jack guns?!?! Does it work on their guns?

Sunday, November 22, 2015


Under the Dreadball Support section on the Organized Play Page from Mantic ( there was quite a treat, specifically in the League Play Pack. Let me cut to the chase!

"The new boots have granted the Jack players better stability on the pitch and as a result confidence in their abilities in the game. While playing in the Star Realms League all Jack players may move up to half their movement, rounding up, when performing a Slam, Steal or Throw action and may be used with Run Interference."

WOOHOO!!!! A Jack upgrade across the board! Now we are talking! This should really change things for a LOT of teams out there - Marauders, Robots, Zzor, Zees, Martians, Koris, and of course, the Rebs, and probably many more... Before I go gushing about how this is the exact fix needed, or how I am super happy with Mantic responding to players' concerns, we are giving it a go Monday night. I will report back on Tuesday in a special Sideline Report!

There were some other changes in the document too:

"In homage to its violent past the Star Realms League runs a little differently to normal leagues. In game terms this means that if either team has no players on the pitch at the end of their turn then their opponent wins with a 7 point victory regardless of the score when the game finishes. In addition to this any player removed from the pitch injured as a result of a Foul action generates a Fan Check."

There were some changes to other aspects too, leveling up, free agents, so on (please take a look), but everything seems overshadowed by the Jack change.

Tuesday, November 10, 2015

COACH'S CORNER: Conventional Wisdom - MACE!

So, for those of you who do not know, I live in in the USA in the state of North Carolina. We don't get a whole lot of conventions coming through my area. There is one that I have attended before, it is in the city of Charlotte, that is just down the road from me. It is called MACE. And it is this Friday - Sunday. My lovely wife surprised me with a weekend pass!

I have a few events on my convention calendar, as far as what I signed up for - Murder of Crows, a four hour RPG session with three quick RPGs called Micro-RPG Grab Bag, Dark Moon, and Mars Attacks: Ten-Minute Takedown. But, there are zero Mantic games being offered in the official schedule - sad face.

So, a friend and I are going to take in two board, and a few teams and just start playing. Most of the people who attend MACE are local, or regional. I would love to spark some more interest in area. We are both huge Dreadball fans and have introduced a number of people to the game already (though many have migrated to other gaming stores in the area, and therefore into other metas).

I definitely want to have the base teams there. I have a fully painted base set, my friend painted the 29ers and I painted the Marauders. I also have enough painted space elves to sub in as humans (thanks to the packaging error common to the Asterians, I have an extra Guard, therefore enough to pretend to be the human team). I am not sure what other team to take. I would like to take one that is similar to the humans or another Season 1 team, but I don't have any more Season 1 teams painted. I would welcome any ideas.

Below are my painted teams...

Perhaps I should look into becoming the voice of Mantic in my area, Pathfinder Pope if you will....

Tuesday, November 3, 2015

SIDELINE REPORT: Nemion Oceanics vs Pelgar Mystics

This week, the Sphyr and the Judwan faced off on the Pitch. My friend Dan had not played his Judwan in quite some time and wanted to bring them out. They are a nicely painted team and it was good to see them back in the game. I decided to try out the Sphyr, and though I had seen them played before and played against them, it was my first time as their coach.

The Setup

Yellow - Judwan StrikersDark Blue - Sphyr GuardLight Blue - Sphyr JackGreen - Sphyr Striker
I set up in a pretty aggressive forward formation. Dan countered with a fairly standard defensive formation, except for the one strike are off to the side, assumingly  place there in order to be able to get to the ball later.

 The first rush went pretty well for the Sphyr. I ended up getting my guard to slam one of the outside defenders on the three point strike zone out of the way. While at the same time using a striker  to both assist with the slam, by threatening the Judwan player, and setting himself up to catch the ball. I easily got the ball through it to my other Striker, and scored a three point goal.

The second rush saw my opponents players head down the pitch and attempt to move my players out of the way for a three point strike. Just to not go as easily as he had planned, as his Feint actually ended up having him slammed onto the ground. My opponent ended up settling for a one point strike.


I could go rush by rush at this point and describe what happened, but honestly it was a comedy of errors on my part -  I missed three strike attempts and flubbed picking up the ball once. That pretty much cost me the game.  On my opponents part, it was slowly moving down the pitch, moving my  players out of the way, and scoring three point strikes.  The job one finally ended up winning by a landslide in the 10th rush.

 In no way am I trying to take away from my opponents abilities. He played a pretty flawless game. He utilize the abilities the Judwan have to throw long distance and score 2 great advantage. Plus, he is experienced at using Feint like a pro. He won the game fair and square.

My dice were on a cold streak. Oh well, such is life.

"Sometimes you eat the bear, and sometimes the bear eats you." - the Stranger, The Big Lebowski

What did we learn:
  • The Judwan are still quite a viable team. Now, take that with a grain of salt of course, because it will entirely depend on your opponent. The matchup against the Sphyr is actually a pretty good one for the Judwan.
  • The Long Arms ability never ceases to amaze me. It is just fantastic. 
  • The Sphyr all right quite remarkable team, even though I lost, I could tell that there potential is near limitless. They are like a human team, but with a couple of extra tricks, and Movement 6.
  • Both teams in this game head Movement 6. Movement 6 is where it's at. 
  • Tail vs the Judwan is useless.  OK, not entirely useless. I realize that it would be great if one of them were trying to steal from you, but being honest, I never had a single rush where that was even an option for them. There was always a time for me to attempt a strike -  I never had the ball on their rush. Wished it worked against Feint.
  • Feint - in the hands of a skilled (and averagely lucky) player, this ability is really good, and very hard to counter.