Counter Play Options

With the coming adjustment to Deathmark it was mentioned it is being done to allow more counter play. I’d also like to see more counter play options.

Our useful cleanse options are pretty limited. It also seems that many troops that have cleanse abilities have the cost adding the cleanse into the ability too high in my opinion. With Apothecary costing 12, vs Alchemist, Valkyrie, and Green Seer at 10, and Giant Spider at 13, that cleanse offers less than the resource gains. Tezca and Unicorn are closer, but really should have their cleanse expanded to all allies, with the bonus affects to the target.

Passive Counter Play Status Counters:
We need a whole new set of mechanics or abilities that give a more dynamic counter to status effects. Like a Klingon, that when Deathmarked, transforms and powers up saying It’s a good day to die. Something where troops like wraith as a frontline troop still have their punch, but where there is a risk of giving the opponent a powerful boost. Have something like the Dragon Egg, but instead of being immune to burning, if you burn it, it hatches into something nasty.

Active Counter Play Status Counters:
Troops like Bastite Priestess and Mummy King show some hints of what we could see. If Mummy King had his current spell, but if it also added an extra 20 damage if he was Deathmarked. Some of the new boost troops look at opponent statuses, but I’d like to see troops like a Water/Ice Elemental, that would have a Rainstorm, but boosted significantly by Frozen Allies. Abilities that add the risk to the risk reward of status affects.

Devour Troops really need some kind of “Full” status. Kerberos devoured 6 times in a row against me today. Some bad board luck on my part, letting Kerberos recharge almost every turn, but 6 consecutive devours in one match is just wrong. I’d also love to be able to “cut” my troops back out of them, and even have indigestible troops give them an un-cleanse-able status effect that has them taking damage every turn. Something that allows more interactive game play vs devour, than just impervious.

I know none of this can really be looked at until the Unity rebuild and debug phase, but I hope more dynamic play will be looked at.


Perhaps Devour should be based on percentage health instead of percentage chance, so 50% Devour requires the target be at 50% of its original life (and maybe armour) total.

I also had a Kerberos ate 3 out of 4 of my troops in a GW battle today. Its companion spider got a lucky match first turn and proceeded to fill the Kerberos, which then ate my mana drainer (so I couldn’t drain it to prevent skill activation), my mana generator (so I couldn’t catch up on mana generation), and my single-target damager (so I couldn’t target it specifically) in that order, all barely damaged, and all on first try. I still managed to win with a sole surviving Crimson Bat with some timely heals and opportunistic bloodsucking, but it was a stupid fight.

How about a positive buff that blocks one status application spread among at least a few different troops? For example one that can apply to “1 troop per x gem destroyed” with a minor board mod spell (eg. dragonian monk), a match 4/5 trait on a viable troop (eg., not a mythic), single target with mass board mod (convert x color to y color), or “all allies of x type” with mass board mod (eg., forest guardian). Add another similar status buff for with mana drain as well.

I like the idea of status effects being used advantageously by those inflicted with them in some situations, but they really have to be able to be “played around” for this to be a thing. Deathmark can’t be “played around” because it randomly kills you. Thats part of the reason Mummy and Bastite don’t really work in the first place. I’d love to see active counterplay options like this, just not more for deathmark, even after it is “fixed”, unless the text of the spell also included “remove deathmark” or “cleanse”, or the spell is strong enough to straight finish the fight on that same turn (which would also be kind of silly).

As for devour, this mechanic is always going to be polarizing. Right now, its another one of those things in the pile of “don’t let it cast”. We could have a minor trait that reverses the effect of devour, but some troops have to do a lot more work to get their devour than others and it would be super niche - look at how few “Indigestible” troops we have already. Personally, I’d prefer if every devour was 100%, but the conditions were difficult to set up (wulfgarok is a good example of this), rather than “its balanced because it doesn’t trigger 100% of the time”. That probably won’t happen, though.


How about a mythic/legendary troop(s) that makes your Entire team immune to devour.

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I agree on the limited options part, mostly for Brown/Red still needing an all-cleanse troop.
But i would be good with that, an all-cleanse for every colour is all i really need, but the more the merrier i guess.
Disagree on the cost part, i find ~2 mana for an all-cleanse fine really.
Aside from GS summon, All-cleanse is the most beneficial secondary effect on universal transformer troops in my opinion.

I really like that idea of passive counters that don’t render the status effect themselves useless.

Some nice thoughts here.

@Esoxnepa I posted some ideas addressing similar concerns here: More protective traits / status reworks needed


@Esoxnepa amazing thread, i like almost everything you wrote there :grinning:

Seggra’s heart (Hero’s weapon) has a “Cleanse to all” effect. And it’s a Blue/Brown weapon ;-).

But yeah no Red cleaner… Devs can nerf Deathmark but it will not change anything for the Red-day battles…
Last time, few of us claimed about “no good Red Summoner” and we get Gwayne. So let’s cross fingers :slight_smile: .


Yeah you’re right, Sheggra’s Heart was not on my radar for some reason, thanks for pointing it out :slight_smile:

Agree. Mercy and Herdmaster are arguably the only really useful ones…?

Interesting idea but I think these are (1) too bespoke to code in and (2) too gimmicky, creating a solution to a very isolated problem.

Agree, though it’d be better if the newer things ‘we could see’ were actually useful, not laughable like this combo.

Agree there is a bit of a problem, but disagree that this solution works. This is a symptom of the slightly overpowered and very RNG-friendly Kerberos and ForestGuardian combo.

That combo is what bothers me most currently. GreatMaw’s spell is typically ‘win game’, but at 24 cost, even with converters and links, takes a long time to fill up (when MawMercy was the metacrap issue of its day, the problem was Maw’s RNG nightmare devour-on-attack trait, not its actual spell), and so can easily be countered or simply out-raced. Kerberos (in the standard ForestGuardian/GiantSpider build) can fill in one turn (one purple surge) for a 50% chance of ‘win game’ - two bad RNG rolls and it’s game over and nothing you can do if you didn’t bring a SpiritFox.

Why does red need an all cleanse troop??

If all colours have all troops that can cover every conceivable occurance, all you have is six extremely similar teams.

I think that’s pretty boring.

getting a red all-cleanser is very far from that kind of occurance


My point was/is if the DM nerf is to give one turn to make the player able to cast a “cleanse to all” spell, in this case, Red is lacking a troop with this effect.

Yes it’s boring. But not because there are similar troops in each color (Impervious for example) but because you have to use a specific counter to a specific defense team. And as for each day, there are always the same Deathknight or Kerberos team, you are forced to use similar teams.

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