TOGHRUL GUIDE BY GARDIET

***NOTE FROM ENLIGHTENEDOWL***

Gardiet is a potential new contributor to the site. As with all potential new contributors, I’m posting his article here on a trial basis and then it will be up to you guys, the community, to decide his fate! Please take a moment after reading the article to leave a comment and to vote in the survey on the main page. If you’d like to see more content from this author let us know! If you think you’d rather not see more content from this author POLITELY let us know that too! You guys will have an enormous impact on who writes here and who doesn’t so make sure to make your opinion heard! Enjoy the article.

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TOGHRUL, THE BLOODY WARRIOR

Hi, my name is gardiet, a Spanish DoC player.
This is my first contribution to mmdocking.com, and I am quite excited about the new age of this website. In my opinion all of us must try to help EnlightednedOwl to maintain and improve the best not official DoC web. So I decided to send him an analysis of my current Toghrul deck.

Well, let’s go. Are you an aggressive player? Do you enjoy winning your duels with large creatures damage? Then, Toghrul is a good hero for you style and will give you very funny moments.

The game meta is now diverse allowing different styles and strategies. Some of the most used are Kat fortune, Deleb creatures, Ashala immolation, Masfar OTK, Yukiko spells, Hakeem titans, … I used to be a Dhamiria player, and I think that she is still a playable hero, but Toghrul seems a more powerful option for these reasons-

-Not bad if you are first, at least you can play a card and start your pressure against your opponent.
-No free defeats. You have always a strategy to fight against the most played desks.
-Good low resource cards that allows you an easy development during the first turns.
-The requirements are 5-3-3, but in most of the matches you will only need 4-3-1, so you can get an extra card in most of your turns using the ability of all the heroes.

The deck we will analyze, standard mode:
http://www.mmdoctools.com/deck/1151-toghrul-5-3-3.en.html

The main strategy in most of the matches would be attack your opponent as soon and hard as possible. Easy to say, not so easy to achieve. But you would have the tools to do it, and you must concentrate your efforts in this goal. This is not a build deck, it is not so important get the board control. There are many decks with powerful spells that can change the board position in a turn, so our objective will be damage the rival hero.

I am fighting each month with this desk to be in the gold cup of Road to Paris, and achieving tier 1 in each standard jackpot. Not yet the first position but some seconds and thirds, and still trying ;-)
Cards:

Hero (1)
Toghrul. Earth and fire spells, 20 health, 1-1-1 and a synergistic ability with some cards of this deck: increase the bloodthirsty.

Events (8)
Week of mercenaries (4). Essential. A damage upgrade to accelerate the duel.
Cosmic balance (4). Masfar OTK is here, and it could be useful against other control decks that usually accumulate many cards.

Alternatives: Cosmic balance (2), Rise of the Nethermancer (2)

Creatures (31)
Goblin scout (4). One of the best cards usable in the first turn. Good damage but low health. Perhaps your opponent could neutralize him with an opposite shooter, but you can damage it a few, move your scout and support him with a melee ally, or even destroy the other shooter with the Fire Bolt spell.
Stormrage Hunter (4). I like her. If I see a hand with four of them I feel that the duel is mine for sure. Playable in any position, you can choose upgrade her damage not attacking if needed, good health. Best two resources Stronghold card.
Ranaar Harpy (3). Not so good as the hunter, but still necessary. The deck need a sure creatures development, and this card assures it.
Moon Phoenix (1). It is always in my decks. Not end card specially great against spells control decks.
War Oliphant (4). The only card that prioritizes defense versus attack. This monster is one of your tools to stop extreme aggro strategies, and the best option to use with Sacrificial Altar.
Bloodclaw Shaman (4). We are arriving to the real power of this deck: bloodthirsty. 3 resources, immune to retaliation, and 2 retaliation damage. Great to defend a line with melee creatures and the first card that will increase its power killing rival creatures.
Bloodsnake Shaman (4). Better that the last one. This is the card that will give you most of your victories. It is so strong that would be downgraded with the next DoC version. It is very valuable for you, so protect it and don’t forget Toghrul ability to obtain free damage.
Blackskull Shredder (4). The way to end a lot of match when you lost the ground control. Having him in your hand, specially together with a War Tent, is an infallible way to destroy the last hero health.
Zefiria, Windchaser (1). Do you remember our goal of damage rival hero? She is fantastic to do it. Change other creatures positions to free lines. Also good defender against magic creatures.
Damran, Chosen of the Thorns (1). As any other unique creature he must be in this deck.
Hikyu, Chosen of the Flames (1). Same as Damran and the tool to clear the board if both players have many creatures.

Alternatives:
Bloodshark Warrior. New expansion card, similar to Bloodclaw and Bloodsanake Shamans, but he is melee and not immune to retaliation, big differences. I prefer War Oliphants, but if you are more aggressive, you could change them.
Bloodhydra Shaman. She was in my deck, but I had to change her by The price of the void. There are many control decks out there that requires the fortune.
Panther Warrior. Too expensive.
Blackskull Clan Warlord. Incredible creature, but this is not his place. We use the bloodthirsty strategy.
Bloodfrenzied Wyvern. As Bloodhydra Shaman you can’t have so expensive creatures and the spells and fortunes that you need.

Spells (11)
Fire Bolt (4). Cheap, efficient. It give you extra damage to free lines and destroy enemies.
Forked firebolt (4). Same that the last one. No so good cost-efficacy, but with only a card you damage two creatures.
Insect swarm (3). I prefer not to hurt my own creatures, but this spell is extremely useful in many situations. Think in a duel where there is many creatures and you have Shamans. If you destroy those in front of your Shamans with this spell, firebolt or Sacrificial altar help, the bloodthirsty will assure massive damage to opponent hero. This is what we want no matter if the next turn our Shamans are out of the board.

Alternative:
Arkath’s Wrath. If you have to recover the ground control your duel is almost lost. Anyway Insect sworm is what we use to play the role.

Fortunes (6)
Sacrificial altar (4). This has been explained before when talking about other cards. Removal to open lines to other warriors. Don’t forget that killing a rival creature this way activates your bloodthirst ability.
The Price of the Void (2). No synergy with the rest of the deck at all, but necessary in the current meta. There are a lot of situations where this card is your only defense: Titan workforce, Army of the Dead, Creeping darkness, immolation, …
One of its funniest uses is with Blinding Light. What a great sensation seeing your Shaman stopped by that spell, growing up his damage, and unexpectedly use this fortune to end the duel!

Building (2)
War Tent (2). Extra power, specially useful with Blackskulls.
Matchups:
Haven (80/20). Very favorable. As said in the tips, barracks and other low health creatures are the best way to activate bloodthirsty. Put a Bloodsnake Shaman in front of the Barracks and you will see how this card will end the duel by its own.

Seria fortune (70/30). Small stackable warriors and aggro strategy. Try to get the ground control. Insect sworm and your other spells are very useful. Take care of Bone to bone and try to have a response for this fortune. If you are losing, Bloodsnake shaman plus some spells to cause massive damage.

Deleb, Garant (70/30). We have good defenders (Bloodclown Shaman, War Oliphant, Stormrage Hunter). Stop the first wave and inferno has no options.

Ariana, Sveltana (70/30). If the duel reachs the 10 turn your options decrease quickly. Attack the hero and forget their attempts to stop you.

Yukiko spells (55/45). Quite balanced, but lightly favorable in my opinion. Don’t fill the ground with creatures and choose carefully their positions. If you decrease Yukiko health enough in the first turns, you can end the match with a victory.

Kat, Acamas (50/50). Who is first and lucky with the hand decide the duel most of the times.

Dhamiria breeder (50/50). Spellhungry Breeder plus Spawing Chamber plus Arkath’s Wrath is a very good combo. Focus in hero damage avoiding occupied lines.

Masfar OTK (40/60). This is my experience. With 4 Cosmic balance you have the tool to solve this match, but I am not fortunate enough to see them when needed. I miss Dhamiria ability.
Conclusion:
Toghrul is a perfect deck for those that enjoy bloody duels. His force is in bloodthirsty and quick attack. This deck has some synergy cards that focus their effect in damaging the opponent hero. I hope that you give it a try and obtain fine results.

Well, this is my first article, so don’t be very severe in your comments. But please, give me your opinions, they are welcome. I like DoC a lot and it would be fantastic revive and improve this web.

Best regards,
gardiet

TOP TEN MOST GAME-SHAPING CARDS OF ALL TIME

Welcome friends to the first of hopefully many top 10 countdowns! These are strictly my opinion and I’ll open it up for you guys to give me your opinions with a poll and of course the comments section at the end of the article! Now, just to be clear as to how I am making my choices for this particular countdown- In order for a card to be “game-changing” by my definition it needs to be a card that, because it exists, changes the way the game would otherwise be played if it didn’t. These are cards that have had, and in some cases continue to have, a huge impact on the game as we know it and if these cards were never printed DoC history up to this point would probably look quite different than it actually does. Also, for clarity, please note that several of the cards on this list have been altered/changed/nerfed since their original release or since the time in which they were most impactful. If I were making a list of the top ten most game-shaping cards in Standard only or the top ten most game-shaping cards as they sit right this very moment this list would be very different. I’m talking strictly about how cards were at one point or another, regardless of changes. With that out of the way, let’s get to the countdown!

#10- Blackskull Shredder

It’s never been a secret that Quick Attack is a very powerful and very versatile mechanic and combined with Swift as well as a maddening 4 Health that keeps it out of Insect Swarm and Geyser range, Blackskull Shredder has long been one of the most reliable and efficient creatures ever printed. I’d imagine this guy has stolen more games than most other cards in all of DoC, whether combined with War Tent or not, and he’s excellent because he’s not completely shut down by the formerly common Earth’s Grasp and he’s quite reasonable against any type of deck from hyper aggro to pure control to combo and everything in between. This guy is the reason you have to position your creatures the way you do and you cannot leave lanes open in the late game. Expect this angry Orc Warrior to terrorize Standard and dip his feet into the waters of Open for a long time to come.

#9- The Strength of the Sea

Now nerfed from its original terrifying form but still quite good this card is the classic example of a very hard hoser for specific types of decks and a card that always did something very good when you played it, regardless of what you were up against. In an era dominated by Sandalphon and Ignatius relying quite hard on Throne of Renewal dropping this card at any point in the early or mid game pretty much meant the game was over. The printing of this card not only put a severe lashing on the dominant Fortune decks but it also made formerly unviable aggro decks, such as Sandalphon rush, suddenly very good. I don’t know if there is any other card in DoC that shuts down decks cold the way The Strength of the Sea does and for that reason, combined with its extremely relevant power boost, it has earned a spot on my list!

#8- Insect Swarm

The original anti-rush spell, Insect Swarm has been around since Base Set 1 and is still played, a lot, today. Insect Swarm is the reason that 3 Health is unacceptable competitively and 4 Health is perfect! The existence and prominence of this card really keeps the metagame balanced and keeps aggro decks in check while still allowing them to be competitive. It also adds a layer of depth and complexity to the game as it changes how aggro players need to play. If efficient board sweepers like this did not exist there is no reason not to just throw all your creatures down at the first opportunity and overwhelm your opponent. Earthquake is nice, but the difference between 2 damage and 3 damage is night and day, and Geyser can be played around relatively easily. Insect Swarm is about as reliable and efficient as it gets and the existence of this card, as it has from the beginning, has a massive impact on how the metagame is shaped. Game-shaping? Yes sir! This is especially noticeable in Standard right now as it very much feels to me like Insect Swarm is the most important card in the entire format.

#7 Week of the Mercenaries

Another classic that has been with us since Base Set 1 and is still heavily played in Standard today, Week of the Mercenaries is among the biggest “How much damage can my opponent do next turn?” cards in the game. Calculating for this card, whether one copy or a pair, has probably been among the most common math we’ve all done throughout the history of the game. No card has truly enabled aggro decks the way this card has. No Event has ever been so busted in multiples the way this card is. No card has ever turned a board of 8 creatures against 8 creatures into a board of 8 creatures staring down an empty other side of the field as often as this card has. Since the beginning of DoC time the efficient and well-timed use of this card has been the difference between winning and losing for so many of us and I think it’s quite clear that the game would be very different, and probably much simpler, if this card were not around. Assuming they’re going to keep reprinting it in future base sets definitely expect to be hiring some mercenaries for seven days (or at least for a turn) for the foreseeable future.

#6- Ammar, the Cunning

The only Hero to make the list, Ammar nauseatingly reminds me of what was likely the worst metagame in DoC history. This guy has, completely necessarily, been severely nerfed since his heyday but believe it or not he used to read “Whenever you play a spell this turn” as opposed to “The first time you play a spell this turn” and it was incredibly, ridiculously, absurdly stupid. Ammar could, extremely reliably, kill his opponent by turn 5 from nowhere and there was absolutely nothing opponents could do to stop him. The deck was non-interactive, criminally consistent and completely and utterly overpowered. Honestly, while I applaud the minority out there who simply refused to play this Hero on principle, old Ammar was so much better than everything else that is essentially rendered every other deck in the metagame non-viable. Ammar was the only deck to play if you really wanted to win, as it had favorable matchups against everything, and believe me when I tell you the mirror match was dreadful. As much as I’m sure many of us, and probably the developers too, would like to forget about this era of the game it did unfortunately happen and for the completely game-defining impact it had for all those months Ammar, regretfully, earns his spot on the countdown.

#5- Cosmic Singularity

Cosmic Singularity is unique among the cards on this list because all the other cards were immediately known to be good and heavily played whereas this card was initially hardly played, then played a little, then played a lot, then the centerpiece of an era. I recall introducing this card as a 1 of in a very old Adar-Malik list I wrote about for this site and many people were skeptical at first. I still stand by that 1 of being quite good and I think most people who actually tried the list came to the same conclusion. As time went on people realized how good it was in other decks too, such as Cassandra, and since this all happened before the changes to unique cards it led to recurring Prison in Cassandra and Sandalphon and later recurring The Forbidden Flame in Dhamiria absolutely defining their respective metagames. Before they made it so unique cards could not be reused, which was the peak of Cosmic Singularity’s popularity, it was played as a 4 of in many decks and the previously dominant mill decks were all but extinct from the metagame because of it. There were multiple metagames that would have looked entirely different had this card not been printed and as such it has earned a top five spot on my countdown!

#4- Chain Casting

As miserable as Ammar was and as frustrated as many of us have been feeling BSed out by Asalah or Masfar, the true culprit is the card that enables it all- Chain Casting. As this card is about to be severely nerfed I think it’s clear the developers realize how powerful this card is the way it’s currently worded as it alone enables the existence of several decks that simply couldn’t function without it. I’m all for fair combo decks as I think they’re fun, challenging, good for the metagame in multiple ways and they add variety to the game. Chain Casting, however, leads to very unfair combo decks that in my opinion are bad for the game on multiple levels and are quite unfun to play against. Because of this card, especially in multiples, players can, sometimes as early as turn 4 or 5, unload their entire hand and kill their opponent in one shot, often by stacking multiple Power-boosting spells, such as Icy Weapon, all onto one creature and swinging in for 20 or more in one swift stroke. Of course, there are multiple other equally frustrating to play against ways this card enables players to kill one another but that’s the most common one. Just like Ammar I despise this card and would rather not draw any more attention to it than is necessary but because it has enabled not only multiple decks but essentially an entirely new archetype it’s impossible not to include this on the list. I can’t wait for the nerf…

#3- The Forbidden Flame

The Forbidden Flame is simply the best board wipe in the game, probably by a great margin, and it’s unlikely anything will ever be printed that is truly better in this role than this. Fire Magic was the best school of Magic for a long time and The Forbidden Flame is the reason why. The existence of this card completely changed its era and many matchups were entirely defined by whether or not a player could dig this up by turn 4. Magic Peddler was played in large quantities almost solely to get this card because of how powerful and important it was. Kelthor, undeniably one of the most popular and dominant decks of all time during its heyday, took this card to an entirely new level by not only wiping the board but then following up with 2 or 3 copies of Blackskull Vulture Rider- all on turn 6 or 7. Many decks simply couldn’t recover from this devastating turn. Even in matchups in which this card did not solely define the matchup it always played an extremely crucial role in each game and was an invaluable asset to a player.  A huge part of why Cosmic Singularly was so busted is because there was a time in which players could recur this over and over and over again, often casting it five times in one game, which as you can imagine is extremely frustrating from the point of view of an aggro player. Really the only thing more frustrating and unfair to recur than The Forbidden Flame was…

#2- Prison

Probably the most overpowered card in the entire game and among the most unfun as well, Prison is just broken. Now, granted, it has been nerfed several times, both directly and indirectly, and it’s still nuts, but there was a time (a long time) where you could play this card repeatedly in a game and essentially play Solitaire as your opponent sits there helplessly ready to throw his monitor out the window. Up until the fairly recent Standard/Open split Prison essentially defined every single metagame throughout the history of the game, was often the pivotal piece that the best deck in the format revolved around and likely caused more complaints and forum rants than just about everything this side of the infamous wombo combo. Originally Prison wasn’t even unique so in the infancy of the game the best decks simply played 4 and of course, because that’s insane, had a massive advantage over everything else. Even when it got changed to unique many decks just abused Cosmic Singularity to repeatedly Prison lock their opponents, a cornerstone strategy to two of the best decks of all time- old Cassandra and Sandalphon Lock respectively. Prison was rightfully excluded from Standard and in my opinion should never be allowed in a format other than Open ever again. It’s the poster child of cold hard lock and dominance and it’s the reason Haven was the best faction in the game for such a long time and why the developers chose to nerf it to the point of being unplayable upon the initial release of Standard. As the best non-creature card ever printed, Prison is my undisputed number two selection for the top ten most game-shaping cards of all time, behind only…

#1- Pao Deathseeker

Many of you probably knew this was number one before even reading the article. Pao Deathseeker, simply put, is what Duel of Champions revolved around until the Standard/Open split and its nerf that upped its cost from 3 to 4. Because of this card, with its absurd efficiency, barely-existent counters and game-defining power level every single aggro deck played 4 of these and every single other deck played the entire game playing around this card and making each and every calculation with this card in mind. Because all aggro decks played 4 of these, period, decks essentially started at 14 life or less as it’s quite common to draw at least two of these over the course of a game and that’s without factoring in Week of the Mercenaries or whatever other boost a player may have. In top deck situations this was the card you wanted to draw to instantly win the game regardless of what your opponent was doing. This card was also extremely versatile not only because it could pick off creatures in addition to finishing off players but also because it was used in multiple ways. For example, many decks of old used Pao Deathseeker as their only win condition. Some were one turn kill decks that would drag the game out forever and ever until playing a Pao and boosting it to 20 Power and wiping you out in one shot. Others would play the same several Pao Deathseekers over and over again via reshuffling them with Cosmic Singularity, bouncing and then replaying them with Broken Bridge or by recurring them from the graveyard any number of ways. Pao Deathseeker was also the key piece that enabled many aggro decks to have a shot against control and lock decks they’d otherwise not be able to beat. I’d guarantee you that this card has dealt the most killing blows of any card in Duel of Champions history, almost certainly by a laughably high margin. If you played Duel of Champions prior to the Standard/Open split you played with or against Pao Deathseeker and despite being nerfed and a mere shadow of what it once was for us old school players it is, and always will be, the card that for so long defined the game we love.

Honorable Mentions-

Circle of Nine, Gate to Sheogh and Void Shade- Cards that each defined an archetype that was at one point in time very dominant.

Decay Spitter- One of the best creatures ever printed that took a previously miserable faction and instantly made them highly competitive.

The Might of Nature- A card that had a massive impact in a lot of matchups and gave users of Fire Magic, the dominant school of Magic of its era, serious fits. However, there were several matchups in which this card did little or nothing hence not being included on the list.

Ishuma Lord of Dragons, Coral Priestess and Sayama Everything- One of the most popular and dominant aggro decks of all time and its cornerstone pieces.

Puppet Master- A card with a game-changing effect that had a massive influence on several past metagames.

Dark Assassin- The aggro standard when the game was initially released and the card every deck needed to be able to kill, wall or race in order to be competitive.

 

That wraps up my list but as far as I’m concerned the discussion has just begun! Please take a moment to give me your thoughts in the comments as well as to vote in the poll on the main page and let everyone know what YOU think! If you’d like to see more top ten countdowns in the future, or not, please let me know that too! I want the new MMDoCKing to be all about the community and every comment, vote, article and other contribution seriously helps. Get involved below!

Til next time,

EnlightenedOwl

ENLIGHTENEDOWL TAKES OVER MMDOCKING

I am absolutely thrilled to announce that I, EnlightenedOwl, have received official confirmation that I will indeed be taking over the operations of this site and, pending Enclase feels I’ve done a good job and the site is active and people are coming to the site and enjoying the content, the site will NOT go down at the end of October as previously announced!

There is a lot to say and I don’t want to turn this post into a super-lengthy Words of Enlightenment post but I’d like to get the important things out of the way-

First of all, who am I and why was I given control of the site? Well, in game I’m EnlightenedOwl and I’m a highly passionate DoC player in Champion 3 who has been around for quite a while and has attempted to contribute positively to the community through my writing and casting as well as sporadic forum activity. Without trying to sound arrogant I’m probably one of the better players in the world being one of the first Americans to cross 1500 elo back in the old elo system and having consistently achieved and maintained 2000+ elo with the current system and I feel I have a great conceptual understanding of the game and hopefully the ability to write about it and talk about it in an entertaining way.

In real life I’m in my mid 20s, college educated with a focus on mathematics, long time gamer across several genres including relevant to DoC experience at high levels such as successful runs on the Magic: The Gathering Pro Tour.

My vision for the site going forward may sound like an unreachable fantasy but I genuinely believe, with time, effort and intelligent decision making we can reach these goals! I’d like to see the site become extremely active- even more so than it was in its prime in the beginning- with updates of SOME kind, even if it’s just a new survey or something, pretty close to every day. I’d like to have several high quality writers contributing to the site on a semi-regular basis. It could be guides, top ten countdowns, game theory, set breakdowns, tournament reports… DoC has A LOT to write about. I’d love to get a solid group of guys and girls together who would be willing to provide content to the site worth reading. I’d like this site to eventually become the only site you ever need to visit, other than maybe the official DoC site, for all things DoC. I’d like guides, tournament coverage, decks, surveys and pretty much everything else you could want from DoC all in one place. I want this to be THE ultimate DoC site and I really think we can get there!

On that note THE NEW MMDOCKING NEEDS CONTRIBUTORS! As the new man in charge I’m essentially scrapping the old hierarchy and am looking to start anew from scratch and put a solid group together. There are a lot of meaningful ways to contribute and with my mediocre computer skills and complete lack of knowledge regarding how to use WordPress and maintain a website I can use all the help I can get! Seriously though, this is the best possible opportunity to get involved with the new MMDoCKing from the ground up. If you’d like to write for the site or contribute in any other way I highly encourage you to please contact me and lets talk about it!

For the immediate future, as in the next couple days, there may not be a sudden burst of activity as I’m still trying to figure out how to actually do things on the site and it’s a steep learning curve for someone who isn’t particularly bright to begin with and also works full time. However, soon, once I’ve figured some things out, I plan to keep this updated quite regularly and hopefully people respond to my plea for contributors and we have no shortage of content to entertain people with. Hopefully this relatively short post informs people of what is going on and what the future holds. Please tell your friends that MMDoCKing is under new management and the site isn’t dead and they should come back to us and give it another chance!

Finally, I’d like to thank Enclase for this opportunity as well as Illtree, bokkengro, Thorontir and all past contributors for making the site what it is. Now, let’s, together, as a community, make it all it can be! I promise you guys I WILL put the time and effort into this site but no one person can do it alone and I need you guys to make this happen!

Finally finally, if anyone wants to contact me for any reason I want to be readily accessible to the community. If you’d like to contribute to the site, if you have suggestions, if you want to have a conversation about DoC… My personal email address is-

ryan.spring0_o@yahoo.com

Use it!

Looking forward to achieving bigger and better things, together!

-EnlightenedOwl

MMDoCKing going down @28.10.2014

Hey guys,

 

I just wanna tell you that I’ve cancelled the hostingcontract for MMDoCKing. The site will go down on 28.10.2014.

If you wanna save some articles, decks or whatever please do it in advance.

 

Greetings,
Enclase

Words of Enlightenment 9th Edition by EnlightenedOwl

Hey all! It’s been quite a while since I’ve last written anything for you guys and I suppose the first thing I should talk about is why that is. It really wasn’t any one thing in particular but rather a combination of factors. 1. MMDoCKing is basically dead and that’s very discouraging to me. 2. I was bored of Standard/the game in general prior to Griffin Bane coming out and wasn’t particularly motivated to play. I also really didn’t care for the Standard format at that time. 3. I’ve concluded that DoC in general is absolutely a cash grab and the development team is making a conscious decision to make as much as money with it as possible in a short period of time and then get away from it (aka let the game die). I’m not about to throw any more real money into a game that the creators can’t be bothered to advertise or put any legitimate effort into in the context of ensuring a healthy future for the game. The game itself is incredible, and I’d love to see an entirely new team hired to run it, but an incredible product is irrelevant if the people in charge of it are only in it for money and/or simply incompetent and I’m absolutely 100% convinced one or both of those things are the case. 4. And, finally, I’ve been playing a ton of Wildstar but even if that weren’t the case I still stand by all of the complaints I listed above.

So why am I here? Griffin Bane came out and I finally found an outlet for my ridiculous previously useless stack of gold that was approaching 2 million and I bought enough packs to have four of everything in the set and get to experiment a bit. Delightfully, I found pretty quickly that I went from feeling like Standard was awful and super variance-based and had only two or three viable decks to loving the new format! A lot… I’ve been playing a ton and actually enjoying the game. I really think Standard is excellent right now. Characteristics of a good format as far as I’m concerned are open, diverse environments in which you can easily play ten games and play against nine or ten different decks, a state in which there is not a clearly defined and agreed upon “best deck” or two and a format in which you feel like you can do cool, powerful and skill-intensive things without having any one particular card or deck that is overly-centralizing or essentially mindless to play. In my eyes, the current format definitely meets that criteria.
So, with this newfound plethora of viable decks what am I playing? To the surprise of no one, I started out simply picking up where I left off pre-Griffin Bane with Deleb. For the first post-Griffin Bane laddering period this worked just fine, as I cruised easily to 3000+ in Champion 3 and it only took me 55 wins to get there. No one above me on the leader board was remotely close to that kind of win ratio. The closest competition had 250 ish points more than me but it took him 26 more wins to get there. Honestly, and I hope this doesn’t come off as arrogant because it is not intended as such, I genuinely believe I was the single best Standard player in the world at that time. Statistically, if you value win rate and consistency as highly as I do, I certainly was. After the reset I climbed past 2000 in Champ 3 in less than 48 hours and stopped playing for the rest of the cycle due to being quite busy in real life. Once again I used Deleb and didn’t have any trouble getting where I got. So, clearly, since I’ve had so much success with Deleb I’m still playing her and crushing face, right?

Actually, no. With this most recent reset I once again simply started on Deleb because there was no reason not to and I was expecting to just steamroll my way to 2k+ as always. But, finally, for the first time since her release, I was unable to climb the ladder in any noteworthy way with her. I found myself with an uncharacteristically low 50% win rate on ladder with her, which for me with the high standards I set for myself is unacceptably awful, and I finally conceded, after grinding out about 20 games with her and getting nowhere, that she just wasn’t working anymore for whatever reason and I needed to look at another deck. For those curious I think “for whatever reason” probably translates to a combination of factors such as other factions getting significant buffs, Inferno, but much more for other decks than for Deleb also getting buffs and a metagame filled with Geysers, Ice Meteors, Insect Swarms and aggression. Cards like Maniac are just AWFUL right now. No viable deck, other than Deleb, plays Maniac, Shark Guard or Wretched Ghoul right now and calling Deleb truly viable is questionable at this point. She’s a deck. By that, I mean, she’s not a random garbage hero with zero competitive viability and she can, under the right circumstances, still get wins. However, she’s definitely not on the level of the top couple decks right now and I’d recommend that serious players really trying to climb the ladder avoid her. And believe me, that pains me deeply to say…

So now, here I was, without a deck, trying to figure out what to play to climb ladder and get back into my groove. I’m a naturally aggressive player in everything. Basketball, Table Tennis, Magic The Gathering, Chess, Starcraft, League of Legends… Everything. It’s not that I CAN’T play control decks but really aggressive decks are simply what click with me the most as well as what I have the most fun playing so I’m definitely inclined to go that way when searching for something new to play. Combo decks are really not for me. I dislike playing them and I generally dislike playing against them as well for a number of reasons so something like Masfar OTK was never even a consideration for me even though it’s pretty good.
I hopped into the Unranked queue to experiment with things and figure out what I like. The first new deck I tried, because I’d played against it several times and it looked like so much fun, was Seria Stackable. As fun as the deck looks it’s actually ten times that much fun to play! I’ve not genuinely enjoyed a deck as much as I enjoyed this one for a long time in DoC. Probably not since I was writing about Kelthor and that was so long ago I could have literally had children since then. Being the hyper aggressive player that I am my build was different from the norm and was very very all in. It led to some absurd starts such as going second and dropping turn 1 Raise Dead, Turn 2 Campfire + Army of the Dead, Turn 3 Lich Tactician + Undead Reinforcements followed by… Oops, my opponent conceded. Another common one was, going second, T1 Raise Dead, T2 Lich Tactician, T3 Army of the Dead, T4 Bone Setter and T5 kill the other guy in any number of ways. Basically, the deck was absurd going second and won the large majority of the time. However, it had three huge vulnerabilities that ultimately turned me off from playing it in games that matter. 1. It was MUCH worse when it had to go first. It usually lost. 2. It couldn’t recover once it fell behind/the opponent stabilized. Now, granted, that’s likely because of the extremely all in or all out build I was using but still… 3. Super common cards such as Geyser, Insect Swarm, Lurker in the Dark, etc. were pretty big problems.

As much fun as I had with the deck it just wasn’t reliable enough for my taste so I took it as a learning experience and moved on. My next deck was Toghrul, which I think is actually viable even though the build I was using at the time was probably a few cards off from being optimal, and I was doing well but not well enough for my standards. I was winning about two games out of three but I want a deck like Deleb of old, Dhamiria of older and Kelthor of ancient times where I could go on 10+ game win streaks fairly commonly and Toghrul wasn’t getting me there. It was while I was playing Toghrul that I ultimately discovered the deck I ended up playing. I found myself playing an unranked game against some random scrub you guys have probably never heard named jkkk89. He was playing Yukiko, which I was surprised to see, but it didn’t take me long to catch on. It was a long game and it definitely could have gone either way but I managed to win. Nonetheless, I saw ridiculous potential in his deck and we began a conversation via private chat about his list. He’s an excellent deckbuilder and in this case it is my opinion that he was pretty much spot on and that his list is brilliant. I dropped Toghrul immediately and started playing Yukiko (I made a one card change from his build if that matters) and the rest is history. I’m in love. I’m 2000+ in Champion 3 again and I’m on a 12 game win streak on ladder with her and my record is like 20-3 with her on ladder and even more wins in unranked games.

I think some of the numbers and even the card choices may seem a bit funky. This is certainly quite unlike Sanctuary has been in the past as this doesn’t play, at all, like Ishuma or decks rushing in with Shark Guard. While this is Words of Enlightenment as opposed to a Yukiko guide, meaning I’ll not go over every single card and why it’s good, I will talk about some of the choices that I think stand out the most and tell you why this list is basically perfect for the current metagame.

Up first on the weird card choice list is Shark Defender. Basically, this deck is pure control in a lot of matchups, specifically against Stronghold and any creature-based Inferno deck, and this guy simply stalls better and holds the fort longer than any other option, including Spring Spirit. In the matchups where he’s good this guy is actually really solid but of course there are times where it doesn’t do much of anything. I’m happy with him overall and honestly wouldn’t even consider swapping him for Spring Spirit or any of the alternatives. The fact that we’re playing three Shark Defender, which admittedly is terrible against some decks, makes it necessary to run Revised Tactics. Usually when we draw Tactics, especially in the late game, this is what we want to be removing. Sometimes you remove Blessed Lake Spirit in matchups where she’s really bad or some combination of the two based on what you’ve already drawn.

Kabuki Propagandist isn’t a surprising choice as much as it’s a very misunderstood choice. I’ve seen way too many lists with people running two of these and that’s just awful. This card is a textbook example of a card in which you either want four or you want zero. If you’re bothering with this guy you want to always drop him on four resources, as he definitely gets worse as the game goes on, and he’s also significantly better in multiples. Having fewer than four copies hurts both of those things and makes the card significantly worse than it should be.

Focused Mind is another card people are unsure about and I don’t think that’s unreasonable as it’s definitely a card I too was skeptical about and there have been plenty of metagames throughout DoC history in which you don’t want this. Getting stuck with it in matchups where it’s useless definitely doesn’t feel good. However, through many games with this deck I’ve definitely concluded that this is worthy of its spot and I’m definitely glad it’s here. This can be a straightforward solution to Hellfire Maniac or it can set up some serious blowouts where you hold it back until they drop Blinding Light at which point you throw this down and make a devastating play. It’s also pretty decent in the mirror match against opposing Kabuki Seductress or Raya or anything with Frozen Touch. Running this card, which is entirely dead in certain matchups, means it’s necessary to run one copy of Day of Fortune which is why the Event setup is the way it is. There isn’t any noteworthy drawback to doing this. I can’t imagine ever NEEDING the fourth copy of Rise of the Nethermancer. The Event setup is exactly correct as it is. Cosmic Balance is simply necessary as your non-Event cards are very much anti-creature and you need to be able to hose combo decks and Rise of the Nethermancer is another card that simply gives you outs to problem cards you’d otherwise have no solution for. Running Week of the Mercenaries or Week of the Elder Races in this deck is 100% incorrect and if you’re inclined to run either of those you definitely misunderstand the deck. Make no mistake- this is a CONTROL deck. If you happen to be able to take advantage of the Events of your opponent, cool, but you shouldn’t be running them yourself.

One copy of Coral Ohyaku may also stand out as unusual. Jkkk89 in his original list had two whereas I’ve seen other very good players such as Hectoring run very similar builds of Yukiko but opt not to include this card at all. While she doesn’t necessary HAVE to be included I can’t think of anything I’d rather have in her spot and if you’re going to run her I think one is the correct number. She’s worse in multiples, as it gives your opponent the option of where to put their stuff when you have more than one on the board, and typically on the first several turns of the game her ability doesn’t really matter and your other similarly-costed creatures are just better. Having one for mid to late game utility and giving the deck that many more options and angles of attack is what feels right to me. Because it doesn’t add any utility and it basically functions the same in this deck as Shinje Warrior, adding, say, one copy of Sayama Champion in her place seems a lot worse to me. A huge theme of this deck overall and one thing that I love about it so much is how much utility it has and how it’s super versatile and deep. I want to stretch that as far as possible without diluting the deck.

Hectoring has one copy of Wandering Bard, which is fine. If you were to cut Coral Ohyaku for another one of this is probably one of your best choices. This deck almost always goes to the mid and/or late game and it sees a lot of cards so I personally am content with simply running my Uniques plus Time of Need but if you want to be that much more consistent, at the price of a little bit of utility, this is an option. I don’t find this deck overly-reliant on Raya nor Zefiria so I don’t feel there is any urgency in digging them up but it’s obviously never bad to have them.

Blessed Lake Spirit is the only other card I want to touch on briefly. If you’re not sure about this card just play with it. She’s insane. Several matchups revolve around her and she just beats certain decks by herself. The only reasons she’s not a four of are the facts that she’s bad in multiples (only in the sense of not wanting more than one on the board at a time- drawing more than one is still perfectly fine) and in some matchups she’s bad/doesn’t do anything but for every one matchup where she’s bad there are five matchups where she’s REALLY good. Like, MVP good. If the metagame were to shift just a tad I can see adding the fourth copy. She’s insane in the mirror as well as against anything with Fire or Earth Magic.

For sure if I were to enter a serious tournament tomorrow for real money or with my car on the line or whatever it is that you care about Yukiko is one of only three decks I’d really consider playing. The other two, for those curious, are Kat, which I’ve conceded is better than Toghrul though I still think Toghrul is perfectly viable and Nahla Constructs, which is expensive to build and difficult to play and therefore not widely used but it’s really really good. Jkkk89, cucu99 and other top players believe Kat is the best deck right now. If she is, it’s not clear cut as it has been in previous metagames where there was a pre-nerf Cassandra, old Ammar, Sandalphon Lock, etc. that was simply better than everything else. Kat and Yukiko share several characteristics and that’s not a coincidence. They both play perfectly fine going first or second (it often feels like Yukiko PREFERS to go first which is the best feeling in the world), both play well from behind, are both versatile/both pack loads of utility, both have no terrible matchups and can realistically beat any deck in the field an acceptable percentage of the time and they’re both packing several Unique creatures which are, by design, just better than other creatures. I also like that all the best decks right now are super skill-intensive at the highest level and super straightforward at lower levels. That’s EXCELLENT for the game! Just about anyone can pick up Kat or Yukiko and play them to some extent. After all, they’re creature decks with spells that kill stuff. Better players will be more rewarded by all the decision making and intricacies and the cap, both for skill and therefore reward, is really really high. These decks really allow the best players to shine through and I think the fact that jkkk89 and cucu99 are both over 2100 ELO with Kat really speaks to that. Personally, I’m over 2000 MMR with Yukiko from minimal laddering and I see no reason why I couldn’t also cross 2100 with her if I played half as much as either of those two guys.

I haven’t touched Open, don’t know what’s good or not good and I’m not interested in the format. Sorry!

So what’s my future regarding DoC? For now I’m still enjoying Standard and intend to keep playing it semi-casually until I don’t enjoy it anymore. We’ll see when the next set comes out and how much it appeals to me and go from there. I don’t see myself getting back into Open any time soon. I also don’t have the time or motivation to compete in Road to Paris or anything super serious. I play too many other games and I work too much in real life. I’d like to see MMDoCKing come back from the dead or for a similar site that has articles and is actually active to emerge. The DoC community is too small and a lot of that is the game simply not having advertising/exposure. As far as my writing… We’ll see how long it takes for this to get posted (if it ever gets posted at all) and go from there. I’d love a reliable website that would allow me to write for them on a semi-frequent basis but I do not know of such a site. I’d also definitely be interested in doing commentary as I did for the DoC Team League, especially with my new pimped out computer and really good headset and mic, but as far as I know Kinetic has fallen off the face of the planet and there are no talks underway regarding a second season of the DoC Team League and I’ve not been approached by anyone to do any type of commentary elsewhere. So, basically, I don’t know what’s going to happen and I guess time will tell but I plan on sticking it out at least a little while longer. I just hope I have SOME audience, even if it’s a small one, for these article thingies that I put a good amount of time into writing and that someone somewhere is getting some kind of education, entertainment or enjoyment from reading these. That has always been my motivation and I’m happy to keep talking as long as people want to keep listening. Let me know…

Happy Gaming!
-EnlightenedOwl

road2paris JULY quali gold finals!

Last sunday we watched top8 bracket with all the gold group finalists. This time it was Stronghold and Necro who dominated qualifiers as wee could see a lot of Acamas and Kat games. Again both nations – French and Polish show many strong players are in their lineups and finally it was Pawel999k who won versus famous and lovely caster cucu99. As the games were played before new expansion we could see almost every playerd who was starting 2nd, wining his games and im really into what will Griffin Bane show us all!

top4:
1. Pawel999k
2. Cucu99
3. Slww9278
4. cucu89
5-8. mazsparrow, strumpic, Zergrusher, Mrh3

link to watch the semi finals can be found here:
link to watch same of the 1/4 games can be found here:

MMDoCKing Chat Still Available

As I’m sure you have noticed you can not direct connect to the MMDoCKing chat via webchat.atheme.org any more. The chat is still up and running you just have to use an IRC client to get there. You can connect to it at channel #mmdoc.net at Athemenet IRC.

If you have any questions about this or need some help getting connected, head over to this thread on the MMDoC forums for a lot of great info on IRC clients and how to connect to the chat.

Make sure to join the conversation. You never know who will pop up in the chat.

Griffin Bane Patch Notes and Release Date

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The patch notes for Griffin Bane have been release and can be seen below. This patch is set to go live Wednesday, July 9th. That means in less than 24 hours we should have our hands on the new cards.

 

100 New Cards

New Heroes, Creatures, Spells, Fortunes, Buildings and Events

Card Nerfs

  • Swelling Breeder now only gives Magic Resist to adjacent Breeders
  • Djinn Cloudshaper now requires 5 Might
  • Enthrall now costs 6 Resources
  • Puppet Master now costs 7 Resources

New Achievements

  • Refer a friend (Reward: 15,000 gold)
  • Have 3 refered Pupil who reach level 10 (Reward: 500 Seals)
  • Win a match against the Academy faction (Reward: Base Academy Deck)
  • Win a match against the Haven faction (Reward: Base Haven Deck)
  • Win a match agaisnt the Inferno faction (Reward: Base Inferno Deck)
  • Win a match against the Necropolis faction (Reward: Base Necropolis Deck)
  • Win a match against the Sanctuary faction (Reward: Base Sanctuary Deck)
  • Win a match against the Stronghold faction (Reward: Base Stronghold Deck)

New format: Road to Paris

Added a new ‘Road to Paris’ format to the ‘Challenge a Friend’ game mode. This format will be used during competitive Road to Paris matches.

Ability Icon in zoom

Added the Ability Icon to a zoomed card descriptive screen.

Regroup same cards of different series

Added a ‘Hide Duplicate’ filter in the deckbuilder to regroup same cards of different series.

Changes in Shop

  • Gold will no longer be sold in the Shop.
  • Starter Decks are also removed from the Shop. These decks are now obtainable through achievements in game.

Changes in Altar of Wishes 

  • The cost of Heart of Nightmares cards drops to 2 / 6 / 10 / 16 (Common / Uncommon / Rare / Epic)
  • Griffin Bane cards enter the Altar at 3 / 9 / 15 / 24 (Common / Uncommon / Rare / Epic)
  • The cost of Legacy Series cards drops to 3 / 9 / 15 / 24 (Common / Uncommon / Rare / Epic)

 

If you missed what cards are due to be released you can find a gallery of them here.

We will have the card database and deck builder updated as soon as we can. Again thanks for your patience and understanding.

The future of MMDoCKing

So as I’m sure you guys are wondering after the mysterious edit of Enclase’s post from a few days ago, what will the future hold for this site. So in the interest of full transparency here is what is going on.

I will be taking over the day to day operations of the site. Providing content, making sure that we keep up to date on the news and bringing you interviews from the community. I will be trying to provide at least one article every other day, with breaking news as it becomes available.

The thing that I know is on every ones mind is the deck builder and card database. I have been in contact with Bokkengro and he is willing to update it for us. The update will however not be ready for the new patch as it was previously and will more than likely happen after the patch goes live. I will keep you guys up to date on when that is going to happen. So please be patient with us as we work through the transition.

If you have any questions or comments please leave them here and if you would like to contribute to the site please contact me at illtree1@gmail.com.

Thanks for making this a great site

Illtree

Getting to the Bottom of the Stack. Stackable Creatures and You

 

New Stackable Mechanic.

What is stackable? Well this is a new mechanic that is being brought with the new Griffin Bane expansion that is set to release sometime in the next week. We got a peek into this mechanic today on the Griffin Bane Arena stream with the community managers and it looks like it is going to add a whole new level of strategy to the game.

In an interview with Developer SimonV we got an explanation of what this new mechanic will bring.

Stackable is a new ability that lets you deploy, relocate or move a creature with Stackable onto another creature with the same name. Let’s say Serpentfly has Stackable, you deploy the first one normally, then you deploy the second one on top of the first one, the size of the Serpentfly will go up by 1 and the 2nd Serpentfly card will go to your graveyard. Since your stack of Serpentfly is 2, it’s ATK is 2 and its HP is 4.”

If you want to read more about the upcoming expansion you can find the full interview over at the DoC Forums.