"Who Let the Dogs Out" - A Team Composition Guide


Troop Composition Ideas Overview

I may post a few of these guides. I try out many different Gems of War troop combinations to find synergy that interests me during battle. I posted this a long time ago on the Darkfall guild forum, but thought I would update it and post it here.

Please understand that I am not trying to post teams that I think are the “most powerful” or necessarily better than other formations. And although I came up with these on my own, someone else may have already posted about it or used it before. I do not know. I just wanted to share some of these ideas for fun. You may find it easy to improve upon these compositions or find other approaches that work for you.

"Who Let the Dogs Out" - A Team Composition Guide
Before Ascension: 1 Rare Troop, 3 Legendary Troops

“Cry ‘Havoc,’ and let slip the dogs of war!” --from Shakespeare’s Julius Caesar

This team is a lot of fun. Our dogs are Carnex and Kerberos. Kerberos–sometimes spelled Cerberus–represents the final and most dangerous labor of Hercules. Kerberos guarded the entrance to the underworld to prevent the living from breaking through to the dead. Carnex reminds me of "Dog” from Half-Life: Alyx Vance’s “pet” robot, built by her father Eli to protect her as a child. These two powerful troops give us the name of this formation.

What only remains is to answer the question: Who Let the Dogs Out? And it has to be one of the remaining two Troops; either the ominous Shadow Dragon or the mysterious and arcane Alchemist.

“Who Let the Dogs Out” is a song by Baha Men released in 2000 with copious amounts of Woof! Woof! choruses and other silliness—check it out for a fast and fun listen if you have not heard it.

Overall Strategy

The goal with this team is to try to use the Alchemist and the Shadow Dragon to gain extra turns and continue feeding mana to your other troops. Alchemy feeds Evernight and Evernight feeds itself and the other two abilities: Chain Reaction and Underworld. Evernight also poisons the other team to soften them up for your subsequent attacks.

When you have a lot of purple on the board and Evernight is charged, try to use Alchemy to change gems contiguous to purple into yellow to allow Evernight to generate at least one extra turn. And of course, always try to gain an extra turn by prudent use of Alchemy.

When no matches are available, bust out Chain Reaction and blow the board to high heaven. Remember that Chain Reaction requires skulls, but it can give your troops mana momentum towards future extra turns and keep your abilities charging. It also increase Carnex’s tanking abilities by augmenting his armor each cast.

Kerberos is your sniper. Point him at the most dangerous troop in the enemy formation and he will either gradually take it down or has a one in four chance of destroying it outright. If the mystical and unfathomable gods of random number generators are on your side, Underworld can turn Kerberos into a terrifying juggernaut (pictured below)–

Once this team gets going, it is very hard to stop. I easily gained Rank 1 with this formation. Judiciously played, you should never need to traverse the catwalk of shame. Regardless, I have a lot of fun with this team. I enjoy the chance of devouring troops using Underworld and capitalizing on the capabilities of the sinister Shadow Dragon to rain down cascades of purple for my troops and true damage for the enemy. I was only able to create this formation due to the transformational changes to Shadow Dragon.

Team Mana Colors

Blue and green are omitted; all other colors are represented in this team

Tip: when transforming gems using Alchemy, this color omission can work to your benefit if you create matches with Blue and Green. This approach keeps viable mana colors available to press your advantage and keep your reserves supplied.

Recommended Banner

Old God’s Banner (+2 Purple Mana when matching gems)

Team Bonuses

Lord of Gears (All troops gain +2 Armor for having 2 unique Adana troops)

Available Team Magical Powers

Chain Reaction: Explode [2+Magic] random Skulls. Gain 3 Armor.

Alchemy: Transform a selected Mana color to Yellow. Gain [3+Magic] Gold.

Evernight: Poison all enemies, and deal [1+Magic] true damage to a random enemy. Transform all Yellow Gems to Purple to Boost the effect. (Boost Ratio 3:1)

Underworld: Deal [4+Magic] damage to an enemy, with a 25% chance to Devour them.

Suggested Marching Order

Carnex (1st), Alchemist (2nd)
Shadow Dragon (3rd), Kerberos (4th)

Optional Team Configuration

If you enjoy transforming gems the way I do, then you might consider a modification to this team.

I sometimes replace Kerberos in the lineup with the Keeper of Souls, a Khetarian Legendary Troop. The Keeper of Souls uses Soul Strike magic to transform all gems of a chosen color to Skulls.

This can work in concert with Chain Reaction: hold off casting Carnex’s ability until you have exhausted all skull combination matches. If you have a lot of skulls on the board which could be used by your opponent on his turn, then blast a hole in the board with Chain Reaction and walk away from the explosion in slow motion. This will often remove the threat completely.

End of Line


He was also to keep the dead from escaping the underworld.

Team sounds fun, I might have to try it

"Gypsys, Tramps & Thieves" - A Team Composition Guide

Thank you for doing this. As a newbie, it helps to have some direction. I understand synergy, but don’t have the patience to keep looking at each troop to find the best way to get there.