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Ashes: Rise of the Phoenixborn» Forums » General

Subject: Few questions rss

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Igor Persin
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Hi

So I finally got Ashes to play with my gf. Yesterday we played our first game, so in order to learn my gf more easily, and not annihilate her(she doesn't have same experience in this games as me), I read somewhere that Noah is weakest and Aradel strongest of the bunch.
So okay, it went a bit slowly as I explained rules to her, but very fast it became obvious that I can do jack shit to her.
As long as there is one unexausted jaguar, she can simply exaust anything I summon for 1 basic symbol(Meaning I have to pay 2-3 resources and she negates that with single). And since she can easily summon 2 of those spyrits, later in the round she can simply kill anything I summoned. I can't attack her back, because I'm exausted. She can also use her phoenyxborn and dice ability to do dmg to minion and kill it.
In the end she won easily, and wasn't much impressed with game. She said it was not fun, because it was obvious that I can't do anything to her. I liked game, and I am looking forward to trying other decks. I just hope it ends more exciting than this matchup, where one side had 0 chance from very beginning.

So, was this one of those matchups that simply go bad together? Do you need to build noah's deck a bit better or?

I haven't seen other decks so far, but as it seems, Aradel seems really really strong from early game to late game. Even if you have tough creature, she can block with that cheap 1/1 spirit to prevent dmg to her summoner or something else. And once you are exhausted, just slowly kill you.
ANd then there is her great spell to simply change 2 dices to any symbol, dmg spells and so on...

Those with guard spell, like that daemon. If he is exausted, he can still block and soak dmg, but can't return any, because he is exhausted?
 
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Marina SC
Canada
Vaughan
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(I haven't had a chance to play this game too much, and Noah only once, so you can keep that in mind in my answer)

First, to answer your last question: no, only unexhausted units with the Guard ability can block (see page 9 of the rules under rule "3. Declare a guard")

I also found Noah's deck to feel a bit weak, however it sounds like you were playing without using his main strength: doing direct damage to the opponent's phoenixborn. IIRC he has at least a few cards that can do fairly high damage, and he uses Ceremonial Dice which also can do direct damage. From my memory, most of his cards do not use the highest level of dice, so you have to really take advantage of dice abilities. I did feel like he should use more Ceremonial dice than Illusion dice (say, 6/4 instead of 5/5), but that could be my lack of experience (I also might be mixing dice types up, but I'm pretty sure I remember seeing knife icons on loads of cards )
 
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Igor Persin
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I only got one of those crossbow guys that deals 2dmg to enemy phoenixborn when summoned. Then he gets exhausted and killed by 1/1 spirit or spell. I can return him to my hand with ceremonial magic, and then he deals 2 dmg to me, which I found really mediocre. Dunno why would you wanna do that in most cases.

Noah ability lets me exhaust enemy spell, which soon is worthless when enemy has 2-3 of that spell.
He had spell that deals 6dmg to enemy unit(meaning not phoenixborn) when he himself gets dmg. Not that useful vs bunch of 1/1 2/2 creatures that get replaced so easily each turn.
 
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Marina SC
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Vaughan
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Sorry, I had just woken up and now I realize I think I melded together Brennan and Noah into one character I DO remember thinking the dice felt unbalanced for Noah, however.

Hopefully someone else can help!
 
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Count Ringworm
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Just to be clear- a unit doesn't need the Guard ability to block for a Phoenixborn. Any unexhausted unit can block attacks on your phoenixborn.

When you attack a specific unit, unit guard allows units with that ability to block *those* attacks.

Those blue jaguars are a real pain. Their Gaze ability is brutal. A guy in our meta plays them to great effect. I wish i had better ideas on how to deal with them myself. I'm trying to use the Seal spell to turn off their spellbook right away, or getting an Owl out ASAP to shut them down. Seems to only delay, not stop him entirely.
 
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Skyler Tipsord
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Illinois
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Also, Noah's ability helps slow down Aradel early game. The moment she puts out that Summon Blue Jaguar spell, you exhaust it. Then, in later rounds, if you can put out a Stormwind Sniper, you can kill a Jaguar she managed to get out BEFORE the Jaguar can exhaust your sniper. Plus, the fact that he can side action summon Masked Wolves and summon Spiders on a unit dying makes him very tricky to use, yes, but if you can get good boardstate early game, then it becomes your game to lose.
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Chris Hewlett
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Firstly, it sucks you had a bad experience with Ashes, especially as a first experience.

Aradel is patently better than Noah, over a longish time period (5 rounds), she will always win by grinding down your battlefield and dripping damage through to your PB. It would be fair to say that this is an unfair match-up, although I find that unfairness really fun (I am maybe 2 from 10 against Aradel with Noah).

Noah is a very hard deck to play - you have to throw the typical strategies out the window. His biggest weakness is Natural Magic decks (of which Aradel is one). Hopefully I can provide a few tips from my many plays as Noah (he is my favourite PB - even if he isn't the best).

1. Dealing with the Blue Jags:
This is hard and should be your main focus. That said, Noah's PB ability will always mean you can stop a BJag from being summoned in the first round. In later rounds, use Small Sacrifice to exhaust them (this removes their Gaze ability text), use Shadow Counter to kill them or Target them with attacks (hard with Butterfly Monks on the field).

Also remember that exhaustion is not the end - you get that unit next turn, and she is spending a die every time she exhausts you which is one less Butterfly Monk or Mist Spirit on the field.

2. Keeping up the Tempo:
Remember that I said that you will lose this game within 5 rounds? Believe it. And plan to win quicker. Stormwind Snipers (SS) are your best bet. Summon three of these guys for 6 direct damage total. Use Bound Soul to bring them back for 6 more damage and Aradel starts to look worried.

I would recommend putting one of these into your first five. If your opponent starts; they place a summon blue jag ready spell; you exhaust that spell and summon SS; they place another ready spell; SS attacks for a further 2 damage. If your opponent uses water blast/nature dice to kill the SS in their turn, play Summon Sleeping Widows from your hand (also need this in your first 5). Then in your turn you have 4 damage to attack Aradel with.

That is tempo - time your attacks for when Aradel is "off balance" and swing for lots of damage. Once you have ~4 damage dealt by attacks, you can finish the game with SSnipers so the tempo will shift a little. Sleeping Widows are fan-tas-tic at this - you can summon two units in your opponent's turn, and, if they have just attacked, most of their units will be exhausted which might allow you to get through to the PB.

3. Slowing Aradel's Tempo:
This is hard and looks to be where you had the most problems. Masked Wolves and Sleeping Widows are not great here - one life is killed too easily. You should only summon Wolves and Widows directly before an attack and stop caring about them afterwards.

The False Demon is your trump card here! Ignore Bring forth in most cases - these guys are a big 'ol sack of hitpoints for two dice. They can survive a Water Blast from Aradel so will form your front line in blocking her units from getting through. They are also the perfect target for damage from your small sacrifice spells (big 'ol sack of hitpoints).

You aren't going to prevent all damage from getting through, you just have to let it through slower than you are drawing into your final SSnipers/Bound Souls. If a Mist Spirit/Butterfly Monk targets your False Demon, Guard with your PB. Use the demons to block damage from Jaguars and units with Massive Growth. Wolves and Widows have the same life as a Mist Spirit so don't block with them - use them to attack either the Blue Jags or Aradel.

And stay away from the butterfly monks. You cannot afford to be healing Aradel much. Exhaust the with Small Sac or goad your opponent into attacking with them (they become exhausted) and attack after they are exhausted. If your opponent isn't attacking with BMonks or Jags, then you should have no problem surviving the mist spirits long enough to close the game out with SSnipers.

Anyway, that is a bit of a start, hopefully you can make something of it. I would recommend Coal/Maeoni to go with Aradel for the first match-up. Try learning Noah against Saria or Jessa - he is much stronger in those matchups.
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Chris Hewlett
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smurfORnot wrote:
Those with guard spell, like that daemon. If he is exausted, he can still block and soak dmg, but can't return any, because he is exhausted?


There are two key words you need to know:
Block and Guard.

They cannot be used interchangeably.

Block:
When doing an attack a phoenixborn action and unexhausted unit can be declared as a blocker for each attacker.

Guard:
When doing an attack a unit action, you can declare a guard for the attack. This can be an unexhausted unit with unit guard, or the PB. The guard takes all the damage from all attackers.

An exhausted unit cannot block or guard (but can still be targeted by an opponent's attack)
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Igor Persin
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Yea, first game I messed some of those block rules. I though than when you attacked unit, anyone can block too, in a same way as when you attack phoenixborn.

We played another match agains Ardel, I took Coal, I ended the same. I mannaged to contain her a bit, but in the end, she just slowly draind and killed me.

So is someone counter to her? MAybe Saria if she doesn't get owerwhelmed or Jessa?
 
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Michael Pittman
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Maeoni tends to be good against Aradel. Aradel's small life total doesn't like the burn of Molten Gold or big Hypnotize-enabled attacks.

Aradel is good, but she's also relatively straight forward. It's relatively easy to see how to win with her. This is one of the reasons she seems like a beast in the beginning.

As you become more experienced, you'll be able to perceive the best ways to play the other PBs and how they can beat Aradel. Coal, for one, can actually give her some trouble.

Jessa is a great PB in constructed, but her precon deck is a bit inefficient and Aradel has no fear (pun not intended) of Blood Puppets because of her huge battlefield. It's not unwinnable though.

Saria can be decent as long as you don't fall for certain pitfalls. Ravens are less good because of Aradel's Water Blast. Mill generally won't work, although can be worthwhile as a way to trigger Enchanted Violinist.

Noah is just kind of weak as a precon.
 
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Chris Hewlett
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smurfORnot wrote:
Yea, first game I messed some of those block rules. I though than when you attacked unit, anyone can block too, in a same way as when you attack phoenixborn.

We played another match agains Ardel, I took Coal, I ended the same. I mannaged to contain her a bit, but in the end, she just slowly draind and killed me.

So is someone counter to her? MAybe Saria if she doesn't get owerwhelmed or Jessa?


Aradel is the easiest to play, so you should expect her to win the first few games.

Someone has mentioned Maeoni as a good candidate and I would tend to agree. Maeoni has a few strong counters to Aradel, including:
- Summon Gilder providing 'ping' damage to clear troublesome Mist Spirits and grow the Silver Snakes.
- Hypnotise to bypass Aradel's large battlefield.
- Refresh and Transfer to un-exhaust units.
- Golden Veil to counter Out of the Mists and Steady Gaze.
- Molten Gold to finish off Aradel's life.

Aside from general tips though, it is hard to provide specific advice without seeing you play.
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Igor Persin
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Thanks!

btw. maeoni can use 'strike' even when she is attacking or being attacked, right?
 
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Giovanni Cornara
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smurfORnot wrote:
Thanks!

btw. maeoni can use 'strike' even when she is attacking or being attacked, right?


Yes, as long as she is not exhausted. You must choose whether to use strike as soon as attackers are declared though, you can't wait to see whether the opponent blocks/guards or not.
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Igor Persin
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My gf likes the game, but thing she doesn't like is that core starters feel not that ballanced. Yesterday I played Maeoni vs her Saria. SHe had 0 chance to win. on 2nd or 3rd turn, not sure which one, I had few 2 tokens on my snake+2 attack from maeoni+1 from dice+1 from spell. That's 6 attack, and I could remove exsaust from her with spell, and had that spell that snake can't be blocked or guarded(I guess that means that I can guard my snake and defend her, but when I attack with snake, her attack can't be blocked in any way, no matter does someone have guard ability, right?)
And she couldn't kill snake because I had 2 mouses and I could still block with Maeoni. So it was gg in single turn...

After playing few more basic games, to get her familiar with what everyone does, maybe we should start drafting? BEcause as it is now, half the time it seems that game can be decided before it even begins if one takes certain phoenixborn.
 
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Daily Grind
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I have to disagree about the inherent balance. I think the problem is that some decks are much harder to play well than others, but in the hands of an experienced player, they're just as strong. However, for someone taking a beating, this is a subtle distinction and it isn't fun, so I sympathize.

One way to see this play out (if the players are of mismatched skill level) is to play the same match again and swap decks. If you're a more experienced player, you can teach how to play the more complicated deck. If you're of similar skill levels, then by all means customize a deck to match your play-style and 'even up' the decks. The whole point is to have fun, after all.
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Igor Persin
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Yea, problem is if we play game and I beat my gf, and then tell her to switch decks, she perceives that as 'you wanna tell me that I am stupid? That you are better than me and similar logic' . It ends bad.
I had to sell star wars LCG, after I beat her twice in a row, then foroced her to switch deck, got lucky with draw and she forfeit in 2nd round. Then we had a big fight, she was mad as hell on me, started crying etc. are you happy now, you make me feel stupid, do you feel superior enough etc. ANd all I wanted to do was see if other deck was really that bad vs the one I played with...
 
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Count Ringworm
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Maybe the problem isn't with the game...
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