New stuff means new Teams! I tried to avoid as many spoilers as I could with the new releases, but a few things slipped by. One of them was Ant-Man: Petty Theft. A small cheap character who becomes unblockable when he spins up AND tops out at a 5 attack? Hell yeah!
So, this guy was the core of the build. It was pretty obvious that I needed ways to spin him up. Two immediately came to mind: Hawkgirl and Mutation. Hawkgirl allows non-Villains to spin up when they attack (which Ant-Man will be doing often), while Mutation allows a little more control as to when the spins happen. Mutation also helps if your Ant-Man enters the Field at level 3, which would be a little bad for the core combo.
Let’s see how things fit together.
What Did You Play? (Part 1)
The Team: Ant Problem.
So, the core combo is outlined above. Get Hawkgirl out, attack with Ant-Man early and often for lots of damage. So, I needed some accessories to help with this. The new Avengers ID Card was an easy add as it both buffed Ant-Man and provided masks for Mutation. I wanted to dip into the new sets for my other pieces.
Atlas was put on for his Global (basically fist-rez… Come on Dice Masters Community, we need a good nickname for this one… Ratlas?), but also helped out as a back-up plan if things went sideways. Songbird was put on for her Intimidate ability. Most of the big control pieces tend to be below 4 cost, so she could remove things temporarily to allow the Ant to do his job. Meteroite was an interesting add. We will talk more about her later, but basically I knew my Field would be fairly lean and she would provide a little protection from the rampaging dice hoards out there.
If my primary win condition had to do with Awaken, Storm felt like an obvious choice. She and Ant-Man could play together to help deal with annoyances. My final pieces were Released From The Ice was to help get my Ant’s back into Prep after they go through. Bat-Signal was another way to spin things up and give a little bit of a buff.
With the build in place, let’s see how it ran initially for the little guy.
This one was against the new Thanos who has Overcrush and gets cheaper by putting Villains back on the Card… along with the Jabroni Axe that doubles the Attack of a character. Basically Ant-Man Rush vs Thanos Rush. He brought Big Entrance, which greatly helped with the speed of the Ants. I was able to stuff my bag with them and get them going. I raced for my 5 damage at a time while hoping to outpace Thanos who came out WAY eariler than any Thanos I had seen before. Luckily, the Axe never hit and the Ants were able to swarm their way through for big chunks of damage at a time.
Common Jubilee with The Staff. Spin up and kill everything basically. None of my control would help here, so it was Ant-Rush again. I got some significant damage through early, but then lost Hawkgirl and struggled to get the Ants to come out with the ability to spin. My lead quickly dwindled but was able to push through at the end thanks to spinny Ants and Storm. I forgot how brutal that Jubilee/Staff combo is.
Lots of Guardians. Some old, some new. It was going to be death by buffed characters. Enter Meteorite. I got my basic set up of the Hawk and Ants going, but quickly pivoted to her. With her out, the worst I would have to deal with were 2 Guardians at a time. I could handle that as long as I had some cannon fodder (Sidekicks) to use. This controlled his side of the board extremely well and allowed the final Ant to hit for an unnecessary 9 damage when pumped with some ID Cards.
This was a Token Team build around overwhelming you and hitting with buffed Squirrels/Chipmunks. She was fairly efficient at getting the machine going pretty quickly. Enter Meteorite again. However, this time I had Lethal Force to deal with that got her off the Field very efficiently. I had to strike with every Ant, even when he was not at Level 3, which was my M.O. from previous games. The damage was a little slower in this one for some reason. The game ended when my opponent made a mistake taking out my Hawkgirl with Lethal Force while Meteorite was active. She had also activated the Rare Hellfire Club that buffed everything, but KO’ed anything that did not attack or block. As a result of that, she lost her entire field with the exception of a single Odin who survived the ordeal. I rerolled everything and the next turn and had the numbers advantage. She should have won that game if she had taken out Meteorite instead.
Let’s talk about Meteorite first. What a good control piece. It made dealing with large Fields much easier to digest and gave me time to cycle through my Ants. This feels like an almost “must have” on this Team. While I never purchased Songbird, I would keep her on this build as a contingency plan. Ratlas also proved to be good, although I never needed the character. It was was nice to have that in my back pocket if needed.
Mutation and Storm were also pieces that I would not change from this Team. Obviously Hawkgirl and the ID card were also core pieces that I would keep. That really only left Bat-Signal and Released From The Ice as the odd cards out.
I love Released From The Ice, but I could not get it to cycle properly where I could pull an Ant from my Used Pile. That first game I played where Big Entrance was available made the Team flow faster. I would drop the hammer and swap in Big Entrance. I would also drop out Bat-Signal as it did not get purchased once. This Team need a pump Global, and with the build the way it is it needs to be on a character. If I want to keep this Modern, I have either Hawk or Hulk to use. Both fist Globals which is not the most synergistic with my Team, but better than nothing. I would lean towards one of the Hulks (most likely the Common for a Plan B or C) as the ID Card helps her out naturally.
Finally, let’s talk about the little guy… Ant-Man. Recently, I heard the Intercontinental Champion Ben Scott refer to him as the best unblockable character in the game. After using him in this build, I have to agree. He was amazing and basically drains one quarter of your life in one level 3 hit. In a future build, I would throw another die on this to increase the chances of cycling.
Overall, I would call this a good first draft of a good Team. Would I play it again? Absolutely!