Arakis' Quest - The Level 1 Quest: RESULTS
Written by Arakis   
Monday, 14 June 2010 14:47

A number of unusual things happened with this Quest.  Level 1 cards are among the most accessible cards in the game, but there are only so many of them in existence at this point.  For that reason, there was an unprecedented degree of homogeneity amongst the entries.  There were 35 of them, which was nearly a new record, but they all tended to follow just a few select blends of strategy.  The upside of this was, it was easier than ever for newcomers and those who have never won anything to make it to the finals.


 


Our entries this time did surprisingly well against the NPCs.  In fact, most of them won their initial test matches, which might come as some surprise to some of our player base.  However, when it came time for finalist testing, none of them managed to actually win a match.  This isn't too surprising, since level 1 cards are inherently fragile.  They tend to shine at the start of a match, but if the opponent can generate momentum and set up a solid field, it's pretty much over.  The stars of this Quest were undoubtedly Gowen rank-up cards, Animated Dead, and Sweeping Tidalwave.  You can get a lot of mileage (for cheap) out of those rank-ups, Animated Dead can hold a field for a long time with plenty of SP and a 30/30 buff, and Tidalwave proved to be instrumental in disrupting the early field setup of opponents.  The most interesting thing about our finalists this time is none of them have ever been finalists before.  It's a winners circle full of newcomers, and that's hardly a bad thing.  This is especially true since some of them, including our winner, are long-time Quest entrants who've now finally managed to rise to the top:


WINNER

Iczer: CodeRed

File Name: none


Soul Cards

1) Heierrat Horseman

2) Novice Folrart Acolyte

3) Novice Folrart Acolyte

4) Novice Folrart Acolyte

5) Kesaran Pasaran


Play Cards

3 Knight Apprentice

3 Heierrat Army

3 Feline Kin Fighter

3 Rifleman Knight

2 Heierrat Horseman

3 Panther Soul

3 Sweeping Tidalwave

2 Dragon Breath

3 Shield the Weak


RUNNERS-UP

1) Koboje

2) indogan

3) Illyasviel

4) Johnjo

5) Mordai


So what can you do with nothing but level 1 cards?  The best approach seemed to be, get the most bang for your buck, rush rush rush, and disrupt your opponent's early game as much as possible.  Our winning file follows what was a common opening for this Quest, Knight Apprentice with an immediate Panther Soul.  Suddenly that level 1 card now has some very impressive stats.  He can often hold a field by himself for a few turns, so the new few are spent bringing out Heierrat Army and Rifleman Knight.  Now, instead of spending SP to raise your Gowen level for a rank-up, it's more economical to just play Heierrat Horseman, who gives all Mercenary Nation units a free rankup (and a free card level).  He also makes a good sacrifice for a soul skill, if that's how you choose to field him.


At any time during this setup, Sweeping Tidalwave often proves to be a good idea because it can return problematic level 1 or 2 enemy cards.  Even though using it means having to put extra SP into Falkow and the loss of another one of your grims, the disruptive effect on your opponent often outweighs those drawbacks.  Shield the Weak is another handy grimoire that can help guard your field against field wipe action skill and soul skills.


There's not much else to say about this file.  You basically just need to keep rushing, and time your soul skills well.  Feline Kin fighter is good for holding the field down in the late game, but you'll almost definitely need to get your Gowen level up to 5 by that point so you can take advantage of her unique rank-up abilities.  The Heierrat Horseman soul skill should probably be used on either her or Knight Apprentice, and the three Novice Folrart Acolyte souls can come in handy for cutting away at your opponent's field.  Kesaran Pasaran is pretty much just an end game anchor that you hope you never have to use.


To say this file has weaknesses is a gross understatement, but that holds true for all the entries in this Quest.  The low HP of nearly every card is the biggest drawback, not to mention things like Cyclone which can clear your field in an instant if you don't have Miracle Fruit.  At least SP flow is rarely a problem when playing all level 1s.


Thanks to all who entered, and congratulations to our winner and finalists.  This was the first of what I consider to be a true underdog Quest.  It wasn't so much about who can win the most effectively, but who can come the closest to winning.  We'll probably see more of these in the future, but it's hard to say just what parameters will yield them.  Anyway, next time will probably be considerably different in that the card pool won't be anywhere near as small.  That is, if I don't decide to do something else first.


--Arakis

 
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