Recommend
3 
 Thumb up
 Hide
4 Posts

Duel of Ages Set 1: Worldspanner» Forums » Strategy

Subject: Character Analysis: Brad the Slacker rss

Your Tags: Add tags
Popular Tags: [View All]
Adam Mitchell
United States
Unspecified
Unspecified
flag msg tools
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
Brad is yet another highly specialized character who is completely defined by his powers. Unique among all characters, Brad will NEVER Pass or Amaze a challenge; he will only Squeak or Fopp. On Adventure challenges he Squeaks on a nine or less; on hit or damage challenges he squeaks on a seven or less.

Clearly Brad will never be of any use in advancing your Labryinth team marker, or in adding your marker to the Royal Festival. With his White Stealth he might be able to challenge the Field of Honor, but with his red Armor, four Health and good chance of Fopping the to Hit and Damage rolls, I wouldn't risk it. Brad can do very well at advancing the Mercenary Camp Marker, especially if you trade him the weapons he needs to get over the card requirement challenges. He also does extremely well at the Lith Alliance, breezing past the difficult Honor challenge. I would recommend using one or both of these keys in a game with Brad for those times when he's barred from his primary purpose: challenging the Ruins of Cany XII.

When you have Brad you want to do your utmost to place the Ruins on a platter section free of clutter, between two dome keys (preferrably the 2-3-6 key and one of the 1-4-5 ones). The Slacker can work this most difficult of keys like a guitar, advancing your marker on a nine or less! Not only is this important for winning the key's point, but it also offers you the invaluable opportunity to gain cards from both the Outpost and the Dead City! Normally making use of these parts of the key is risky, given the difficulty of successfully repeating a challenge to get your marker back on track for the point. With Brad, however, such concerns can pretty much be disregarded. Have a character standing by to access the Outpost after Brad Squeaks his first challenge, and get another character there when the Dead City becomes accessible. The four cards gained from the former and the six cards from the latter can make a huge difference in the game.

With Brad we've even managed to COMPLETE the Ruins, and more than once! Completing the Ruins forces the opposing character to reveal every card he has which isn't sitting in his Team's vault, and gives you a new character who starts with three cards, plus three additional cards for your Vault! Needless to say you should always work toward this goal with Brad.

Now your opponent isn't likely to take this lying down, and he has a priceless advantage when it comes to blocking Brad's progress. Namely, Brad may not enter a space containing a hostile enemy unless he has no choice (i.e. his dome is completely surrounded by enemy characters). Thus your opponent can take the scrawniest, weediest character he has, stick said character in the Ruins, and Brad can't move onto that space. In such cases I've usually either brought in another character to clear out the blocker, banished the blocker through the Tower of Maneuver, or sent Brad to advance the Lith Alliance or Mercenary Camp marker while I work on executing one of the two prior solutions.

One thing I've never tried yet is to have Brad shoot the blocker. Because of his abilities he doesn't get cards from Labyrinths, but instead has to rely on getting them through trade, and so he rarely has a weapon. His Fopping on an eight or better on the to hit and damage rolls makes him something of an erratic and unreliable sniper. You could also look at things the other way, however. Like Erin Shirke, Brad can shoot through eight forest spaces and still hit on a seven or less. With a long-range weapon Brad could make shots which your opponent wouldn't even imagine were possible, not to mention potentially clearing out a blocker in the Ruins. The thought of Brad with a ranged weapon is an intriguing notion, and if I get the right card I might well try it the next time I have the Slacker.

Aside from his inability to enter spaces with hostile enemies, Brad has one other big limitation: his three movmement. This is mitigated somewhat by another of his powers: When Brad is within six spaces of an enemy, his move equals the movement of the fastest enemy character within that range, plus two! Never forget this ability! It can get Brad out of a lot of troublesome situations, not to mentioning speeding him on to his next challenge.

Brad is arguably the Duel of Ages character most deserving of a mount. If you find one he can use, give it to him! Not only will he be advancing markers much faster, but it will be difficult for the enemy to slay him and take the Mount, given his White Stealth and Yellow React.

The odds are very much with Brad while he is challenging any bonus key adventure, but if your luck is bad you will Fopp with him eventually and see him banished. In those cases try to safeguard his life to the extent that you can, since your opponent might well seize upon the opportunity to eliminate the Slacker. If he's in real danger, the Colonial or Lith Strategica Tower of Maneuver offer an excellent way to save him and get him back on track.

Assuming he doesn't meet with an untimely accident, Brad's presence virtually guarantees you the Ruins point, not to mention the other benefits I wrote of above, making him a narrowly focused but most worthwhile Adventurer.
3 
 Thumb up
1.00
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Roderick Plain
Costa Rica
Rohrmoser
flag msg tools
Avatar
mbmbmb
Two observations: First, most labyrinth challenges give cards on squeaks, so Brad could get cards from them. Unfortunately, half of them also implies a banishment, and with a speed of 3...well.

Second, I find the sniper role for Brad even better than his role as Ruin's challenger (a banishment from the Ruins could give him a lot of turns of inactivity). Most characters would be eager to be able to hit on a 7 when inside the game. He can become a sub-par Erin replacement, smoothing their adversaries.
 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Adam Mitchell
United States
Unspecified
Unspecified
flag msg tools
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
huron wrote:
Two observations: First, most labyrinth challenges give cards on squeaks, so Brad could get cards from them. Unfortunately, half of them also implies a banishment, and with a speed of 3...well.

Second, I find the sniper role for Brad even better than his role as Ruin's challenger (a banishment from the Ruins could give him a lot of turns of inactivity). Most characters would be eager to be able to hit on a 7 when inside the game. He can become a sub-par Erin replacement, smoothing their adversaries.


While your first observation is certainly correct, I would never bother deliberately sending three Speed Brad into a Laybrinth, knowing that he couldn't possibly advance the Team marker there.

*nods*A bad Banishment is a distinct possibilty. The odds of Squeaking instead of Fopping are, however, greatly on the Slacker's side and a visit to the Tower of Maneuver could get him back to where you want him to be after he unfortunately rolls a ten, eleven or twelve on a challenge.

Personally I would argue that the point Brad can win for you at the Ruins, not to mention the cards he can make accessible there, is more valuable overall to the team than any contributions he could make as a sniper. My thought was to use him primarily in an OpFire capacity, taking shots as they present themselves during his travels, rather than as a dedicated shooter a la Sanchez or Shirke. Then, too, when not on the Ruins I would propose that Brad is better off spending his energies on the Lith Alliance or Mercenary Camp. That's three potential points which Brad can hopefully help secure for your team. Not bad for a Slacker!

Thanks for your post, Huron!
 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Roderick Plain
Costa Rica
Rohrmoser
flag msg tools
Avatar
mbmbmb
Although the best task for Brad is sending him to the adventure keys, in practice (I have participated in around 20-25 games where Brad is present), this task is not as easily implemented as one could think. After seen several games where Brad fopps (or is banished by the tower of maneuver), and then the enemy sends him to the farthest possible dome from the ruins, that also doesn't have enemies nearby, I changed my approach to manage him.

I always first try to give him ranged weapons, and when that dreaded banishment happens, I try to move him both towards the adventure key, but also towards the frontline. Such a way he can create a useful containment barrier for several turns (a la Erin). Sometimes with such a good result that I forget about further advancing him toward the keys.
 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Front Page | Welcome | Contact | Privacy Policy | Terms of Service | Advertise | Support BGG | Feeds RSS
Geekdo, BoardGameGeek, the Geekdo logo, and the BoardGameGeek logo are trademarks of BoardGameGeek, LLC.