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Subject: First Time Playing rss

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Carl Frodge
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Yesterday, I played Ashes for the first time. I played a total of 3 games, using the recommended starting cards/First 5. I was playing with a friend of mine (1 vs. 1).

The games were as follows, and the thoughts afterward follow.

Game 1: Maeoni Viper (me) vs. Jessa Na Ni (friend)
•I wasn't a big fan of Maeoni's playstyle. Buffing the snakes up was good until they got hit with Fear and I had no Golden Veil's in my hand. Once the snakes were gone, my battlefield filled up with Blood Puppets, and with Maeoni's lack of space on the battlefield, they really made things difficult. At one point, I had 3 Blood Puppets on the field and the best I could do was buff them up with Charm dice and Maeoni's ability and try to get some damage in.

I lost.

Game 2: Aradel Summergaard vs. Saria Guideman
•Aradel is OP, at least given the recommended starting decks/first five. Saria had no answers to anything I did. I won easily. I would even say unfairly.

Being able to spew units onto the battlefield like it was nothing, and being able to exhaust, and then kill my opponents units within 2 or 3 turns was basically unfair.

Aradel has at her disposal some of the most powerful cards in the game (Blue Jaguar, Steady Gaze, Out of the Mist, Massive Growth, Mist Typhoon, along with her own ability to deal 2 damage to a unit) Most of which are relatively cheap in cost. If the First 5 for Saria had included Seal and Sympathy Pain, or maybe even Strange Copy, she might have had a fighting chance, but even with those cards, it would have been a tough fight.

Game 3: Jessa Na Ni vs. Noah Redmoon
•Jessa is my favorite. Being able to bring out units that the opponent doesn't really want to attack/damage is really strong, and having tool to damage them herself, to gain their abilities is equally strong. Meditating is, for the most part, a non-issue with her, because it often drops useful allies in the discard pile, which you can bring back with a ceremonial dice power. On top of that (and with Living Doll, you're not taking any damage as a result). Plus, Blood Transfer lets you get rid of some of that damage.

You're never shy to defend your phoenixborn with your units, which is great, because your opponent doesn't want to attack.

Overall, I really love playing Jessa.
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Patrick Reynolds
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Aradel is very strong, especially if she has a bunch of units including a jaguar or two and her opponent has no units. At that point unless the opponent has some kind of answer to her horde it's very hard to mount a comeback with some Phoenixborn. Any unit you bring out gets exhausted by Glare from the Jaguars, and then she hits you with 4-5 small units, but that's still 4-5 damage per round.

I'm not sure that I'd call her overpowers, since the game is so new and I don't think that anyone outside of playtesters has a solid handle on all of the nuances of the game yet. I imagine that once we start deck building a lot of these lopsided matches will go away.
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Marc Bennett
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pkreynolds wrote:
Aradel is very strong, especially if she has a bunch of units including a jaguar or two and her opponent has no units. At that point unless the opponent has some kind of answer to her horde it's very hard to mount a comeback with some Phoenixborn. Any unit you bring out gets exhausted by Glare from the Jaguars, and then she hits you with 4-5 small units, but that's still 4-5 damage per round.

I'm not sure that I'd call her overpowers, since the game is so new and I don't think that anyone outside of playtesters has a solid handle on all of the nuances of the game yet. I imagine that once we start deck building a lot of these lopsided matches will go away.


agree. she doesn't seem over powered but she is very strong. when deckbuilding this will mostly all be forgotten.
 
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Marc Bennett
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agentkuo wrote:

Game 2: Aradel Summergaard vs. Saria Guideman
•Aradel is OP, at least given the recommended starting decks/first five. Saria had no answers to anything I did. I won easily. I would even say unfairly.


really the problem with this match up (with newer players) is that aradel is very easy to play, where as saria is very hard to play. saria is very very dangerous is the right hands even with the prebuilts.
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Donny Behne
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Aradel is just very straightforward and the most analogous to something like an Aggro deck. Gaze is also dead easy to take advantage of. Beating Aradel is about having answers to her Jaguars. Once you can do that, she falls over like a leaf in the wind.
 
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Carl Frodge
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kelann08 wrote:
Aradel is just very straightforward and the most analogous to something like an Aggro deck. Gaze is also dead easy to take advantage of. Beating Aradel is about having answers to her Jaguars. Once you can do that, she falls over like a leaf in the wind.

This was exactly my point. Saria's recommended first 5 has nothing to deal with it.
 
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Donny Behne
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agentkuo wrote:
kelann08 wrote:
Aradel is just very straightforward and the most analogous to something like an Aggro deck. Gaze is also dead easy to take advantage of. Beating Aradel is about having answers to her Jaguars. Once you can do that, she falls over like a leaf in the wind.

This was exactly my point. Saria's recommended first 5 has nothing to deal with it.


Because Saria's recommended first five aren't tailored to beat one specific Phoenixborn out of six. It's there to recommend her best start given a neutral field. Now that you know how Aradel plays, you can adjust your gameplan and change up the first five.
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Adam Lucas
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Having played as Aradel and against Saria I would want to put a Sympathy Pain in my First Five. Chances are you're going to want to be using your Seaside Ravens to take down Blue Jaguars or whatever has the Root Armor, which means its likely the Mist Spirits that will get through your defenses. Take one damage, deal three back sounds good to me. If you can cast all three Sympathy Pains throughout the game that's 9 of Aradel's 16 life right there and with the Butterfly Monks costing a frog symbol she won't be healing a lot of that damage over the course of the game.

I wouldn't rely on running Aradel out of cards to deal damage. If you're playing with the suggested decks then she doesn't need to draw a lot of cards or meditate when amassing her swarm and she'll probably be resparking her Root Armor anyways, meaning her deck will probably shrink slower than yours will. More important you will want to be finding those Sympathy Pains and looking for cheap allies to help whittle down her hordes. If you do happen to do a couple of points of damage then that's gravy.

The last thing I would say is don't be afraid of taking a few hits on your Phoenixborn. On life count you have her beat so it won't be too bad if a plain Mist Spirit gets through. Now a boosted Mist Spirit on the other hand is a whole different story.
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tj1271
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I actually have played against Aradel twice using only prebuilt starter decks and am undefeated. They were very close matches though.

The first game I played as Jessa and pretty much only used units for defense. Yeah the Jaguars can exhaust my recently placed units, but that will only get them through one round. If they want those units dead they're going to have to exhaust to kill them, which means my Phoenixborn gets to live another day. It's not ideal, but it's enough to stay alive while you attack the Phoenixborn directly with Jessa's nasty cards. I always played the max number Blood Puppets on her field so she would have to waste resources killing them off. Plus those Mists that Aradel has are perfect targets for Jessa's ability. Aradel has pathetic health too, so she can't afford to be as reckless against Jessa.

The second game I played as Saria. I completely disagree with your assessment that she has no way to deal with Aradel. I had an easier time playing Saria vs Aradel than I did with Jessa vs Aradel. The Aradel player never had enough dice to do much, and all of those really strong spells Aradel have kept getting milled. I never once hit their Phoenixborn with a unit. All damage was from Sympathy Pains, 3 stacked Purges that I used every round, and from my opponent not having any cards to draw in the beginning of each round. The Owls in Saria's conjuration deck are also a good counter to the Jaguars because it costs you one die to summon an owl and costs them 2 to exhaust it. If my opponent attacked with the mists, I'd just soak the damage with the Phoenixborn and use Sympathy Pain that way the Owls can focus on the Jaguars.

I don't feel that Aradel is OP. I'd say her Jaguars are probably a little too strong for their own good (seriously, why is it so inexpensive for such a stupidly good ability!?), but the other prebuilt decks do have some tools to fight Aradel back.
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Marc Bennett
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tj1271 wrote:
(seriously, why is it so inexpensive for such a stupidly good ability!?)


the signature cards are usually better than average. jessa's fear card (combined with her ability) mean you can take out any unit and deal 1 damage to the phoenixborn for just a main action and 1 basic mana.

EDIT: any unit except the seaside ravens, another signature card 3/2 with spell guard and battlefield advantage.
 
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Justin Hall
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Guys, after reading through this I have to ask. I'm on the fence about this, should I just tilt forward and buy it ? Especially for those promos !!!
 
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Carl Frodge
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Yesterday I had the chance to play again. This time it was Aradel vs. Jessa Na Ni. I played Aradel, and while I'll take into consideration that it was my opponents first game, and he was still learning the game, I still feel like Aradel is OP. But I also think that it's mostly due to, as others have stated, she's easy to play.

In my other game, I played Noah and my opponent played Coal. I got my ass kicked. I don't fully understand how to play Noah. All the time it felt like my opponent had an answer to everything I did, and it felt as if every time I brought out a unit(s), my opponent got rid of them in 1 or two turns. Coal's ability, and being able to use it over and over without Coal becoming exhausted (and even multiple times in a single round with Iron Worker) made Coal feel very powerful.

Anyway, I was happy to find someone else who's going to play and enjoy the game. I definitely want to play more at this point.
 
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Carl Frodge
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VintageBullet wrote:
Guys, after reading through this I have to ask. I'm on the fence about this, should I just tilt forward and buy it ? Especially for those promos !!!

No. Watch reviews, watch how to plays. Play the game if you get the chance. Don't buy it because of the hype, buy it because you truly feel it's something you'll enjoy.
 
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Adam Lucas
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Aradel is very easy to play, while I've heard Jessa is one of the hardest initial Phoenixborn to understand.

With Noah I wouldn't say he's hard to play, but he tends to have to prioritize how he uses his dice because he has a lot of expensive cards to play.

Coal looks like his problem is he's going to run himself out of cards by using his ability a lot so against him I would probably play defensively for as long as possible before going offensive.

My guess against Coal would be to block the Rhinos with the False Demons. The Demons will survive against Coal's tricks, it's the attacks that will make them suddenly vanish, and that's ok, because he shouldn't be playing more than one Rhino a turn until late game and False Demons (not real ones. . .) are a lot cheaper to play. At that point I'd hope to be playing your allies for the surprise damage and then attacking or blocking with them. When they're dead that's a Ceremonial dice (and two health) or a main action and card to bring them back to your hand. Targeting the allies may not help so much because Coal can also use Ceremonial die to bring them back. On the other hand he has to take damage for doing it, so YMMV. Of course if you play the card that removes allies from the game then he can't return them. If you have to take a Rhino to the face then you have a reaction you can use to kill a Rhino outright, and if you're really lucky kill one that hasn't been activated yet.
Your other big trick is to make the False Demons real. If you do that then you don't want that demon to defend if you can help it, now he's prime for attacking allies or Coal himself.
Wolves and Widows are your best bet for taking down Coal's allies.
 
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Marc Bennett
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agentkuo wrote:
VintageBullet wrote:
Guys, after reading through this I have to ask. I'm on the fence about this, should I just tilt forward and buy it ? Especially for those promos !!!

No. Watch reviews, watch how to plays. Play the game if you get the chance. Don't buy it because of the hype, buy it because you truly feel it's something you'll enjoy.


i agree ideally get a chance to play. or wait for some more video reviews to come out. read the rulebook available on the website to know if it might be right for you.

for me it brings a few unique mechanics to the dueling card game genre that it was a no brainer and i have been loving it greatly.
 
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Russ Arbogast
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agentkuo wrote:


Game 1: Maeoni Viper (me) vs. Jessa Na Ni (friend)
•I wasn't a big fan of Maeoni's playstyle. Buffing the snakes up was good until they got hit with Fear and I had no Golden Veil's in my hand. Once the snakes were gone, my battlefield filled up with Blood Puppets, and with Maeoni's lack of space on the battlefield, they really made things difficult. At one point, I had 3 Blood Puppets on the field and the best I could do was buff them up with Charm dice and Maeoni's ability and try to get some damage in.


Why were you not able to get more snakes out? Did he summon 3 Blood Puppets before you could get a snake or a gilder out?
 
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Carl Frodge
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Alienated One wrote:
agentkuo wrote:


Game 1: Maeoni Viper (me) vs. Jessa Na Ni (friend)
•I wasn't a big fan of Maeoni's playstyle. Buffing the snakes up was good until they got hit with Fear and I had no Golden Veil's in my hand. Once the snakes were gone, my battlefield filled up with Blood Puppets, and with Maeoni's lack of space on the battlefield, they really made things difficult. At one point, I had 3 Blood Puppets on the field and the best I could do was buff them up with Charm dice and Maeoni's ability and try to get some damage in.


Why were you not able to get more snakes out? Did he summon 3 Blood Puppets before you could get a snake or a gilder out?

Pretty much. And I didn't have the resources to kill the blood puppets, because I had already taken so much damage, that if I did kill them, Jessa could use her ability to deal damage to me anyway.
 
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Greg
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Perhaps a way to somewhat get around Jaguars to bring new units to your battlefield toward the end of a round so there isn't much harm in it being exhausted too long as they will be refreshed soon enough. If they get attacked, guard with your Phoenixborn so your unit/s will be around the next round to do their thing.

I find it unlikely that any of the Phoenixborn are OP. Plaid Hat tests the crap out of their games and it would be very easy to see if one of the Phoenixborn was OP in that testing.

As with a lot of games with with different types of decks, some are going to be more straightforward and easier for new players to have success with and some will have more of a learning curve or take more finesse or a different play style approach. Not to mention, the recommended first 5 are just a good starting point to learn the game with and not meant to be used all the time. Once players learn the game and the cards, they will make their own first 5 and that will change how certain matchups go.

Same thing happened with Imperial Settlers when people would say that the Egyptians were OP, but then there were people that would say the Barbarians were too powerful or the Japanese, or the Romans.
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Carl Frodge
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Hahma wrote:
Perhaps a way to somewhat get around Jaguars to bring new units to your battlefield toward the end of a round so there isn't much harm in it being exhausted too long as they will be refreshed soon enough. If they get attacked, guard with your Phoenixborn so your unit/s will be around the next round to do their thing.

I find it unlikely that any of the Phoenixborn are OP. Plaid Hat tests the crap out of their games and it would be very easy to see if one of the Phoenixborn was OP in that testing.

As with a lot of games with with different types of decks, some are going to be more straightforward and easier for new players to have success with and some will have more of a learning curve or take more finesse or a different play style approach. Not to mention, the recommended first 5 are just a good starting point to learn the game with and not meant to be used all the time. Once players learn the game and the cards, they will make their own first 5 and that will change how certain matchups go.

This is basically the same thing everyone else has been saying. Even if you take out Blue Jaguar, Aradel can still fill her field up like nothing. She has a ton of other powerful cards in her deck aside from Blue Jaguar, also. All of which are relatively cheap to play.

Quote:
Same thing happened with Imperial Settlers when people would say that the Egyptians were OP, but then there were people that would say the Barbarians were too powerful or the Japanese, or the Romans.

Japanese is pretty OP, they have a card that can't be razed and can get you upwards of 30 points in one turn. The only way to stop it is with a single Egyptian card or with the Volcano, but there's 2 copies in the deck.
 
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Marc Bennett
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agentkuo wrote:

This is basically the same thing everyone else has been saying. Even if you take out Blue Jaguar, Aradel can still fill her field up like nothing. She has a ton of other powerful cards in her deck aside from Blue Jaguar, also. All of which are relatively cheap to play.

while you can summon mist spirits fast they die to well just about anything. for example if you take mist spirits vs lets say the guilder. 1 activation of mist spirits costs 2 mana. 1 activation of the guilder costs 1 mana and can kill both of those mist spirits and still survive (1 from the free point of damage when summoned and 1 from attacking one) and on top of that the guilder has unit guard.

jaguars are attached to aradel as her unique spell. but really compare the jaguars to jessa's fear for example, or maeoni's silver snakes. or even saria's seaside ravens which I have grown a great respect for.
 
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Greg
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agentkuo wrote:
Hahma wrote:
Perhaps a way to somewhat get around Jaguars to bring new units to your battlefield toward the end of a round so there isn't much harm in it being exhausted too long as they will be refreshed soon enough. If they get attacked, guard with your Phoenixborn so your unit/s will be around the next round to do their thing.

I find it unlikely that any of the Phoenixborn are OP. Plaid Hat tests the crap out of their games and it would be very easy to see if one of the Phoenixborn was OP in that testing.

As with a lot of games with with different types of decks, some are going to be more straightforward and easier for new players to have success with and some will have more of a learning curve or take more finesse or a different play style approach. Not to mention, the recommended first 5 are just a good starting point to learn the game with and not meant to be used all the time. Once players learn the game and the cards, they will make their own first 5 and that will change how certain matchups go.

This is basically the same thing everyone else has been saying. Even if you take out Blue Jaguar, Aradel can still fill her field up like nothing. She has a ton of other powerful cards in her deck aside from Blue Jaguar, also. All of which are relatively cheap to play.

Quote:
Same thing happened with Imperial Settlers when people would say that the Egyptians were OP, but then there were people that would say the Barbarians were too powerful or the Japanese, or the Romans.

Japanese is pretty OP, they have a card that can't be razed and can get you upwards of 30 points in one turn. The only way to stop it is with a single Egyptian card or with the Volcano, but there's 2 copies in the deck.


Seems like neither Plaid Hat nor Portal bothered playtesting these games.
 
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