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Marvel Dice Masters: Avengers vs. X-Men» Forums » Strategy

Subject: Power Bolt Build rss

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Josh Walker
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As my brother and I were sitting around and talking Dice Masters (normal people do this, right?), an idea for a build around Power Bolt sprang to mind. It seems plausible, but needs tweaking and a lot of playtesting first, so I’d love some input.

Basic Actions:

Power Bolt
Distraction

Characters (as of now):

Angel-Soaring
Beast- Genetic Expert
Professor X- Recruiting Young Mutants
Cerebro- Supercomputer

The basic idea is to buy a Power Bolt on turn one and save a mask for the Professor X global (PXG). Then your opponent’s next turn dictates your second action. If they buy the second bolt, then you buy the third on turn two. If not, consider holding off until turn three when you can potentially buy both at the same time (but risk they may do the same on turn two). The whole strategy hinges on keeping masks in reserve to keep sidekicks out of your bag and your Power Bolts rolling through. The rest is just specific reactive characters to anticipated problems.

Professor X- Obviously the backbone of this build given its global, but its downfall of course is creating that same opportunity for your opponent.

Angel- Obviously dangerous given his ability, but his purchase cost of two (and not needing masks) makes him a safe buy on turn two or three.

Beast- Mostly there as a counter to Tsarina, but the extra mask potential down the road to keep the ramp going is nice. Could be nullified quickly if your opponent makes use of Distraction while attacking with Tsarina.

Cerebro- I think this may be the better answer to Tsarina on a turn two or three purchase. Making her a two cost field is rough on your opponent.

Distraction- I struggle with this one. The thought of being open on turns three and four is terrifying as I’ve seen some heavy hitters out that early using PXG. I don’t mind my opponent using it to pull back my attackers because its less ramp for them, but in my limited runs against Tsarina, pulling her back after assigning to attack is tough to deal with.

Here is what I see as the ideal sequence. Buy Power Bolt turn one, save a mask and ramp. Turn two, buy Cerebro (or whatever best matches to your opponent’s first turn) and hopefully save at least two masks to ramp. Turn three could have you rolling up to 5-6 sidekicks in addition to what’s in your bag. This is your shot to buy the remaining Power Bolt dice. I think it’s actually better to get the energy on this Power Bolt to save your sidekicks to clear your used of sidekicks. The just start the cycle, slowly moving sidekicks to the field to keep that used pile trim. Anyway, hopefully you get the idea.

Any ideas on how to improve this or how this might get countered? Don't be afraid to blow this up on me. Some of the problems I’ve considered are Professor X- Powerful Telepath, Falcon- Recon, and of course Gobby. Also, this does seem to rely heavily on first player advantage.

Thanks for any considerations you may have!
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I like it, seems fun.

I agree about you providing Distraction's Global, the answer to your Beast, being a potential issue. Because of that, I would change Beast out to the 666 version. (Beast: 666 is the best card in the set. Anyone who disagrees is crazy )That way, you can still get the benefit of Beast, even if they do distract, and with Professor X's global, I have noticed a very 'mask heavy' environment.

With that, I would also add in Doctor Strange: Master of the Mystic arts. Sure, he's too much energy, but he's sort of there for when things go wrong. Have a turn where you can't roll power bolt, and instead get a pile of energy? Buy him, now your Power Bolts will do 4. You may never need him, but he would be a good ace in the hole for the deck.

For the Gobby issue, I always like "force attack" abilities, because if you can clear out the sidekicks, Gobby loses his edge. So, Mr. Fantastic would fit right in, with this mask heavy build.

But, of course, all the above it just to flesh out the core you have there already, which is strong.
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Jacob Walker
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crambaza wrote:
I agree about you providing Distraction's Global, the answer to your Beast, being a potential issue. Because of that, I would change Beast out to the 666 version. (Beast: 666 is the best card in the set. Anyone who disagrees is crazy )That way, you can still get the benefit of Beast, even if they do distract, and with Professor X's global, I have noticed a very 'mask heavy' environment.
.


Maybe I'm crazy, but I think that drawing the extra dice off of 666 is kind of superfluous once you get the PXG ramp going. I'd stick with Genetic Expert against Tsarina, for those times that your opponent doesn't have the energy to distract. In the spirit of the build, I think I'd rather have my opponent spend their energy to distract Tsarina then have any energy to ramp up. That being said, no matter which Beast you use, I agree with my brother that Cerebro is probably the better Tsarina counter in this instance. In a pinch, you could use a power bolt to knock out a Tsarina and force them to re-field at 2 energy.
 
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What about running Human Torch - Flame On? He can turn extra bolts into more damage, making a single Power Bolt 3 damage. I agree with adding Doctor Strange - Master of the Mystic Arts. He is also a solid blocker with nice stats.
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Human Torch might be good.

Beast #666 is definitely not superfluous, one of the main things I've come to realise about PXG is that it can never get you more character dice... it will get you all the energy you need, but you still only draw 4 dice.

So ... with PXG in play, if one player can get 1 more character dice out of an otherwise empty bag, and one cant ..... That should be a really uphill fight for 4 character dice guy.

I dont know if a huge focus on extra dice is still as needed, and its not about the energy anymore, its about characters. Once you have the expensive dice you wanted.... you need to get them into the field to actually do something. And you need as many of them as often as possible.
 
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Reverend Redd
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crambaza wrote:

...With that, I would also add in Doctor Strange: Master of the Mystic arts. Sure, he's too much energy, but he's sort of there for when things go wrong. Have a turn where you can't roll power bolt, and instead get a pile of energy? Buy him, now your Power Bolts will do 4. You may never need him, but he would be a good ace in the hole for the deck.


This, by the way, is insanity. I'm prepping for a Month 6 OP tomorrow with Phoenix Force on the line. Friends and I played some practice games today; we simulated packs by watching YouTube unboxings and had at it. Without fail, all my games went as followed:

Turn 1: Buy Power Bolt, X-ramp with Mask/Wild Energy.
Turn 2: Buy Power Bolt, maybe field a sidekick or two, X-ramp 2-3 times.
Turn 3: Buy Doctor Strange, X-ramp once or twice.
Turn 4: Field Dr. Strange, Power Bolt for 4!

Several practice games, 10-15 minutes each, all won because I could power bolt for, usually, 4 damage (sometimes 8!) every turn, keeping sidekicks out of my bag as the #1 priority, and often buy a second Dr. Strange to keep playing him as needed. And nobody could find a way to stop it - it's fast and brutal. Never attack, win in a few turns, done.

BA: Power Bolt, Distraction.
CH: Psylocke - Kwannon (Rare, to kill problem characters like Toad cheap masks)
Cerebro - Supercomputer (To slow down Tsarina and Gobby and win the damage race)
Professor X - Training Young Mutants (global, keep sidekicks out of deck)
Dr. Strange - Master of the Mystic Arts (Power Bolt for 4! Eff yeah!)
Those are my 4 characters at 3 dice each. It won't matter what I pull from my ten packs, the games were won on those dice right there.

So, here's the reason I'm actually posting this: if it's as powerful as it's been treating me, and it is indeed a potent dick-move way to win (and I'll be sure to post a tourney report here tomorrow night if that winds up being the case), what would one do to beat it? We've made a monster in this thread, now how do we kill it?
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I have had some great results too. My main concern is your opponent going for the Power Bolts. It kinds messes the decks strategy up. This is especially a concern when you go second and your opponent knows your strategy.
 
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galathonredd wrote:
crambaza wrote:

...With that, I would also add in Doctor Strange: Master of the Mystic arts. Sure, he's too much energy, but he's sort of there for when things go wrong. Have a turn where you can't roll power bolt, and instead get a pile of energy? Buy him, now your Power Bolts will do 4. You may never need him, but he would be a good ace in the hole for the deck.


This, by the way, is insanity. I'm prepping for a Month 6 OP tomorrow with Phoenix Force on the line. Friends and I played some practice games today; we simulated packs by watching YouTube unboxings and had at it. Without fail, all my games went as followed:

Turn 1: Buy Power Bolt, X-ramp with Mask/Wild Energy.
Turn 2: Buy Power Bolt, maybe field a sidekick or two, X-ramp 2-3 times.
Turn 3: Buy Doctor Strange, X-ramp once or twice.
Turn 4: Field Dr. Strange, Power Bolt for 4!

Several practice games, 10-15 minutes each, all won because I could power bolt for, usually, 4 damage (sometimes 8!) every turn, keeping sidekicks out of my bag as the #1 priority, and often buy a second Dr. Strange to keep playing him as needed. And nobody could find a way to stop it - it's fast and brutal. Never attack, win in a few turns, done.

BA: Power Bolt, Distraction.
CH: Psylocke - Kwannon (Rare, to kill problem characters like Toad cheap masks)
Cerebro - Supercomputer (To slow down Tsarina and Gobby and win the damage race)
Professor X - Training Young Mutants (global, keep sidekicks out of deck)
Dr. Strange - Master of the Mystic Arts (Power Bolt for 4! Eff yeah!)
Those are my 4 characters at 3 dice each. It won't matter what I pull from my ten packs, the games were won on those dice right there.

So, here's the reason I'm actually posting this: if it's as powerful as it's been treating me, and it is indeed a potent dick-move way to win (and I'll be sure to post a tourney report here tomorrow night if that winds up being the case), what would one do to beat it? We've made a monster in this thread, now how do we kill it?
I do agree that this is a strong team. When I gave my advice about this deck a couple weeks back, I built and tweaked to the same version you have here.

Actions: Power Bolt / Distraction

Psylocke 'Kwannon the Assasin'
Cerebro 'Supercomputer'
Professor X 'Training Young Mutants'
Dr. Strange 'Master of the Mystic Arts'

I think it's cool we both distilled to the same deck core.

This deck does have a huge reliance on going first. Any opponent who sees this team needs to know to go after Power Bolts first. In games where I am first, I get 2 Power Bolts. In games where I am second, an Opponent who is on the ball makes sure I only get 1.

This is where Cerebro fills out this weakness nicely. It's still a 3 buy action, and when you play it, it's still an action so you deal 2 with Dr. Strange. In the case where you only get 1 Power Bolt, I find that I remove Cerebro from the character card it's on to get it back to the Used / Dice Bag for more damage.

The deck can be over powered by removal and fast damage. I played against an opponent who made some early Psylocke 'Kwannon the Assasin' purchases, and attacked for some quick damage, then when I got my Dr. Strange out, quickly KO'd it so that I needed to roll him again. Plus, if you are second, you now need to watch out for the 2-4 Power Bolt damage you are taking each turn now, because your Opponent is using it against you too.

Additionally, I played against a Tsarina build, who did some super fast damage, and when I got my Dr. Strange, he was lvl 1, so couldn't spin down to prevent more Tsarina damage.

Last, I see a lot of decks running Relentless for the global:
"Pay [mask]. Target character cannot block"

And because this deck puts up so few blockers, if you didn't get enough masks to power Distraction, then you are going to take some big damage there too because for a few [mask]s, you have no blockers. And even if you do have enough [mask] for distraction, an aggressive opponent will make sure you can't Professor X all your Sidekicks to prep each turn, slowing the deck down to a crawl. The best defense is absolutely a great offense against this team.

Having said all that, if your opponent is not ready for it, they will be blown away. The deck will win more than its fair share.

Beyond good play, I have been trying to think of counters to the team.

As mentioned above, removal is key, so Storm 'Windrider' or even Storm 'African Priestess' can get Dr. Strange to the used pile, so you have to cycle him through again.

Toad, or some other force attack power, coupled with Transfer Power's global [Pay Shield. Swap the Attacks of one of your characters with one of your opponent's characters]. This way, Dr. Strange attacks for 1 [because he should have his Attack traded with your Sidekick's 1 Attack] This clears Dr. Strange off the field, to the Used as well. This one can be countered with Distraction too of course, but as mentioned earlier, any [mask] you use on Distraction, could make you use Professor X less than optimally.

Imprisoned can grab 2/3 of Dr. Strange's character faces, which can neuter you for a bit, forcing you go grab a second Dr. Strange. It doesn't stop you, but it's all about delay, and a 2 or 3 turn delay can lead an aggressive opponent to victory.

That's all I have come up with so far.
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Josh Walker
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I think an interesting tweak to this deck would be to add Hulk- Green Goliath and Nick Fury- Patch while possibly removing Distraction. Also, Silver Surfer could come into play here. The thought is to use the Power Bolt or Silver Surfer global to clear your opponents field via Hulk's damage reaction. Once cleared you can send Hulk through unblocked for double damage via the Nick Fury ability. A few Black Widows (and why not Tsarina if you have her) could also easily enhance this deck. You've removed total reliance on getting more Power Bolts. Obviously you don't want Distraction in play, but even if it is that means less ramp for your opponent.

I know this no longer makes it a "Power Bolt" deck, but it's a another variation that I think could be pretty competitive.
 
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jwalk40 wrote:
I think an interesting tweak to this deck would be to add Hulk- Green Goliath and Nick Fury- Patch while possibly removing Distraction. Also, Silver Surfer could come into play here. The thought is to use the Power Bolt or Silver Surfer global to clear your opponents field via Hulk's damage reaction. Once cleared you can send Hulk through unblocked for double damage via the Nick Fury ability. A few Black Widows (and why not Tsarina if you have her) could also easily enhance this deck. You've removed total reliance on getting more Power Bolts. Obviously you don't want Distraction in play, but even if it is that means less ramp for your opponent.

I know this no longer makes it a "Power Bolt" deck, but it's a another variation that I think could be pretty competitive.


As you know, I tried this one and it worked out really well, but it occurs to me that, if you are going to go the Patch direction, there are probably better ways to do it than Power Bolt. Green Goblin - Norman Osborn or any version of Mjolnir gives you a global based method of dealing damage to Hulk, albeit they are both somewhat pricey. Reckless Melee and Force Beam cost exactly as much as Power Bolt while still giving you the Hulk trigger you are looking for. As an added bonus, they are probably less obviously useful to your opponent than Power Bolt, so even if they buy them out, it's not hurting as much. I would bring one of those two and NOGG for good measure. We'd need to try it out, but I'm sure it's a Patch team that would really shine.

crambaza wrote:
This deck does have a huge reliance on going first. Any opponent who sees this team needs to know to go after Power Bolts first. In games where I am first, I get 2 Power Bolts. In games where I am second, an Opponent who is on the ball makes sure I only get 1.

crambaza wrote:
Plus, if you are second, you now need to watch out for the 2-4 Power Bolt damage you are taking each turn now, because your Opponent is using it against you too.


I definitely see this issue. This whole power bolt deck feels like something that relies on being first player. This kind of makes me wonder if it wouldn't be worth also trying out the Dr. Strange build with FB or RM instead of Power Bolt. There would be a lot of downsides to this approach. Obviously you are lowering your direct damage potential, and FB/RM wouldn't really be worth using until you got Dr. Strange fielded. But at the same time, it's probably less useful to your opponent. Dunno, I'll have to test it out to see if it works.



As a sort of best of both worlds situation, you might try building a Patch team with FB/RM and Dr. Strange on the sidelines. If your opponent gives you free reign over the action dice, you know to buy Dr. Strange, if they only let you get one, you know to buy Hulk.
 
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As promised, my report...

HOLY SHIT. It works. It's not broken, fortunately, but damn near. I got second, and first-place flat-out admitted that I'd have won had we ever faced off. And all I ever bought were Power Bolts and Dr. Strange, the occasional Gearing Up someone else supplied, and paid through the teeth for X-ramping and Distracting. The ten boosters I opened were decoys, nothing more.

In round one, I botched some rolls - couldn't get a mask or a ? for three turns, so the deck started SLOOOOW. So slow, my opponent just bought two Punishers and rammed them down my throat until I and the Dr. Strange I eventually did buy were good and pulverized. However, in the last few turns, I did manage to blast him for 16 damage before I died. Kinda wiped the smile off his face and made him re-think talking shit about my "stupid" build idea .

Round 2 was down-to-the-wire. I had the bomb opening - Power Bolt and X-ramp turn 1, Power Bolt and 2 X-ramps turn 2, then Dr. Strange turn 3, fielded with a Power Bolt in the face for 4 by turn 4. Problem is, his weenie deck nearly kicked my ass - it was a Falcon/Angel/Goblin deck devoted to pouring out 3/3 unblockable sidekicks. I had two life, barely able to win by pure luck when his Gearing Up I bought earlier rolled me into one of my Power Bolts for a last-ditch win. Right then, I gladly accepted this monster wasn't unbeatable; tough, but not broken, prone to luck and high-aggro rush decks.

Then Round 3 happened. 4 minutes, GG. Same opening I had before, better draws and rolls on Power Bolts meant he was dead on Turn 8. This guy bought two of my Power Bolts to stop me, too - I knocked him flat on his ass by cycling just one, (though it never missed). Game ended 16-0. You should have seen it I said, "Judge? Done." EVERYONE dropped what they were doing and stared long and hard at us... shocked expressions, furrowed brows, murmurs of "Holy shit..." Yes, this deck does have its moments, and they're funny as hell.

Round 4 was more like Round 3 with a slight pause. I had to stop ramping after I got Dr. Strange - I was short on masks, so it took a few turns to get him and any Power Bolts to hit. But my opponent, deciding that even my few sidekicks were too risky to attack into, outright admitted, "Nah, I'll just turtle until I can get the rare Pyro out and blast you to death with bolts. Your go." I smiled, nodded, finally drew into Dr. Strange and began the inevitable. 11 turns, 9 minutes, score was 20-0. My reply: "Never monologue until 35 minutes after the bombs go off." Laughs, handshakes, GG.

So yeah, second. Not totally unreliable, but more prone to bad luck than most decks. As such, we did see some potential counters:

1. If Round 2 had been less crap-rolls for the other guy, I'd have gotten weenie-rushed to death. So, weenie rushes and aggro decks - there just aren't enough masks in one deck to pull back that many attackers and still X-ramp. And Punisher targeting Dr. Strange HURTS.

2. If ANYONE had run Loki - Gem Keeper, my ass would have been grass. "Target Dr. Strange." Buying Kwannon the Assasin to kill Loki would have worked against the deck's need for speed, and made for a fair fight.

3. Good life gain. Human Torch pings Iron Man Philanthropist, Cap-Am - Star Spangled Avenger could have wiped the sidekicks that are bound to accrue, maybe even the OP Wolverine.

4. A few versions of Storm can get Strange into the used pile and at least make you recycle and roll him back in. Slim odds he'd be gone for good, but slim beats none any day.

5. Imprison. Dr. Strange usually came out at cost 1 or 2 for me, so he (and a bunch of sidekicks) would have fit in jail together neatly until your opponent was damn good and ready to let him out.

I'm sure there are other counters, and more will come in time, as well. I'm just satisfied that the only reason I took second was the element of surprise. Given a fair warning, I don't think I'd have done nearly as well as I did.
 
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Really fun typ of deck to play, reminds me alot of the oldschool red decks in mtg.

Ive been trying this one out:
Power Bolt
Invunerability
Prof X trainer
Best Genetic
Angel Soaring
Dr. Strange Master
Iceman to cool
Falcon Recon
Psylocke Kwannon
Loke Gem

Bolt til they drop, and if they get up a counter I switch to unblockables that get pumped.
 
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