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Death by Emperor -- mid-game Deathknight team

This is my evolution of the early-game team, Morthani’s Death Slime, detailed here: https://community.gemsofwar.com/t/morthanis-death-slime-early-team/42534

Death by Emperor

  • Emperor Khorvash (3 traits)
  • Morthani’s Scythe (+8) on Deathknight (L20/85)
  • Valkyrie (3 traits)
  • Green Slime (1 trait)
  • Giants’ Banner (Stormheim, Blue x2)


Expect this team to win most PvP matches against teams with 10,000 scores and below. It will also survive almost any pure Firebomb team at Warlord IV (especially using the Barrier-at-start Talent mentioned below).

Green Slime’s third trait would strengthen this team even further, but I don’t have the traitstones yet. Be careful about upgrading Morthani’s Scythe to levels VI and VII, particularly the latter: creating a single Skull when you don’t kill an enemy troop can be quite risky. One of the strengths of this team, compared to Gorgotha and Dragon Soul teams, is the extra level of control over gem conversion. Basically, you’re more likely to get an extra turn straight after, than you do from destroying the whole board.

This team also seems to charge up faster than many teams in the meta, especially those using one or two Mythics. So don’t give up if you see Ubastet on the enemy team! This team will beat teams with Mythics unless the enemy team is especially well tuned, or you get unlucky.

By “mid-game”, I mean I have all (or most) of my kingdoms levelled, but I don’t have all Legendary troops or many (actually any) Mythics, yet. This team works for PvP and Quest, but I’m not sure about defence. Honestly, I doubt the AI will pick the best times to convert gems.

Game Tactics
Compared to my previous team, we’re sacrificing the ability to attack the last enemy for Khorvash’s Mana Drain and Stun (disable traits). We still have two feeders, one directed damager and one team damager.

Here’s my usual sequence:

  • Fill Valkyrie, taking Skulls as they appear.
  • Fill Khorvash if Valkyrie won’t fill. Try to avoid taking Green (or Purple).
  • Cast Valkyrie as soon as full, unless no gem colour will yield a 4 or 5 match. (Try to avoid Purple or Green, but convert them if there’s no other option.)
  • Valkyrie’s first cast generally won’t fill Green Slime, so consider taking Blue matches before casting Khorvash.
  • Cast Khorvash when the first two enemy troops are nearing full mana, or when Khorvash is at risk of dying (this can be quite a juggling act, especially when choosing whether to drain mana or take a Skull match).
  • Cast Green Slime when you see a definite 4/5-match resulting, or when there’s more than 10 green and 10 purple, or so. Because it creates Greens, it can be worth taking a risk.
  • Try to cast Morthani’s Scythe when it will kill a troop. Ideally, there’ll be a few Skulls on the board. As in my previous team, you can often risk not taking a Skull match when you know you’re going to get a kill.
  • Keep an eye on when a second cast of Khorvash will kill an enemy, where the Scythe would only damage their armour.
  • Also keep an eye on when the Deathknight health drain on 4/5-matches can kill the first enemy without removing their armour and without a Khorvash or Scythe cast.

You really do need all three of Khorvash’s traits, and at least the first for Green Slime. Valkyrie’s traits are less useful. The third Deathknight trait can really rescue things when it all goes wrong, coupled with Green Slime’s Skill increase.

Class Talents
You definitely want Chill of Death (L5) to Freeze an enemy when an enemy dies, since this can save you from an enemy cascade of 4-matches when the board is suddenly full of Skulls!

Vanguard (L10) gives your Hero a Barrier to start, which is a good option when pushing (though the bonus Souls from Soul Caller are better at other times).

Razor Armor (L20) is great for increasing Skull damage once Khorvash dies, and Life Siphon (L40) is a lovely bonus, stealing 2 life from the first enemy on every 4/5-match! This pairs nicely with Khorvash’s True Damage.

Swift Curse (L70) is a good last gasp to get you over the line, but is not that reliable, so consider the Dispel of Banishment instead.

Strangely, the L100 Talents just aren’t very useful, with only a small boost to Green Slime in this team.

This team really relies on controlled 4/5-matches getting you an extra turn when you need it. That can make it susceptible to troops that Freeze (mostly Blue troops), unless you can get in fast – which is quite doable.

The Scythe has a weakness against Submerge, which requires refocussing on Khorvash and Skull damage, but it’s not as much of a problem as my previous team.

This team is also more susceptible to bad gem distributions than my previous one. Sometimes, you just can’t get your Blues to line up, or get the Purples you need once Khorvash is dead. Or every kill with the Scythe seems to give your opponent a series of Skull matches. (Some of this can come down to my own impatience.)

In general, you do want Khorvash to cast at least twice before dying, from a survivability perspective. And you won’t get quite so many awesome cascades than my previous team.

Future Evolution
The team’s greatest design weakness is Khorvash keeping Blues from Green Slime. I’m considering swapping out Green Slime, with the best candidates seemingly being Loyalty or Dark Troll (which I don’t have yet). Unfortunately, Emperor Khorvash can’t easily be replaced.

So basically, this is a strong Deathknight team that tries to maximise spell synergy and minimise randomness by focussing on controlled 4/5-matches from spells.


Nice team, and a lot of effort in the post write-up. Helpful for new players for sure.

Methinks this team will start to struggle against high end meta defences, especially the currently overpowered ubiquitous divine-Ubastet builds…

Have you tried building and using true loop teams? Eg Hellcat+Alchemist?

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Nothing against the slime, but a Giant Spider gives you better control over the board while also adding a summon in cases where Khorvash dies. The only downside is how the summoned Spider Swarm blocks Valkyrie from getting Red Mana, but this is manageable.

Thank you for taking the time to write up such an uncommon team. This breaks completely away from the meta and allows us to use weapons/troops that are not always on the radar.

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Thanks, Zepp. That’s one of the reasons I went to the effort. I love that non-meta teams can still do well in this game!

Thanks for the suggestions. I’ll definitely try them out, down the track. I’ve actually been surprised that I can often beat Ubastet teams. As I said, I think I charge up faster. Or possibly I’m just not in the higher brackets yet.