One of our locals decided to jank it up for us this week. The rule was you could only kill your Opponent in one hit. If you could not do 20 damage all at once, you did no damage. Combat damage (Fixit in particular) was the easiest way to pull this off, but in a Static Field world you had better have an answer for that. Multiple attackers, or multiple “when attacks” abilities would be fine here too, but must deal all 20 damage at once. Ping damage meant basically nothing, unless that ping was for 20 all at once. Same goes for actions. It was basically all or nothing in this Format.
The following cards were banned from this Event:
- Anything previously banned by Wizkids (RIP Cosmic Cube)
- Mera Global (this one sucks the fun out of this Format)
- Shriek: Sonic Beam (too easy)
- Dwarf Wizard: Paragon Zhentarim (we did not want to allow “permanent blankers”)
- Thanos: I Am Become Death (same reason as above)
- Loki: Gem Keeper (similar problem as the blankers)
- The Joker: Clown Prince of Crime (as above)
- Thanos: Throwing Down The Gauntlet (similar type ability as Loki and Joker)
Anything else was fair game. Bring Static Field. Bring Scarlet Witch. Bring Lex Luthor. It was up to your Opponent to figure out how to get their machine to fire with some roadblocks in the way. This made for a challenging build, as really nothing else mattered except firing off just that one time. Attacking for little bits of damage did nothing as those instances of damage would not count.
Fixit was the easy choice here, so obviously I chose to go in a completely different direction and pull out an old favourite.
What Did You Play?
The Team: One Hit Wonder.
Last year, I made use of this version of SP//dr, along with C S.T.A.R. Labs, and SR Jocasta to create a OTK Team with White Lantern Dove. It was fairly effective, but I had found that Dove was unnecessary for this to work. SP//dr itself was a good enough on its own to focus on it alone.
However, I had forgotten that lesson and still built the Team using SP//dr as a tool tool to make the win happen and not the source itself. I threw SR X-23 on the Team to be the beat stick to deal all of the damage to Jocasta via S.T.A.R. Labs.
Giganta was kept on the Team to try and get X-23 up to max stats as quick as possible. Mysterio was put on the Team to encourage Prep on both sides in order to help pump up X-23. Static Field was to keep my stuff in the Field as much as possible. Since this was a OTK situation, force attacks would have been a bad thing. It also acted as a defensive option for things like Fixit.
Since X-23’s top attack is 7, and I really needed at least 10 to make this work, I hedged my bets by including Parasite. A level 2 or 3 Parasite with a single X-23 would be enough to trigger lethal through Jocasta.
Thrown Brick was really my only source of Ramp here. Plus, if my Opponent got the Brick advantage it would only fuel X-23. Win-win.
My final slot was my back-up plan. In the event something destroyed my glorious machine, I would just stock up on Jubilee’s and swing for lethal with her. It also helps that most of my Team was made up of Bolt characters.
So… the strategy is fairly simple here:
- Field X-23, Jocasta, and SP//dr (add in a Parasite if you are worried).
- Spin up X-23 (and Parasite) to level 3.
- Attack with X-23 and use S.T.A.R. Labs during the Attack Step to direct all of the attack from X-23 to Jocasta.
- That damage is doubled because of SP//dr.
- As long as the base attack was at least 10, you should deal lethal damage in one hit.
It has worked before under different circumstances. Let’s see if it can fire off again.
First game of the night was against an UC WF Two-Face and Obelisk Team. Unfortunately for him he didn’t realize that Two-Face and Obelisk deal their damage at different times of the Attack Step, so his OTK wouldn’t quite work how he thought. I won the Brick-off and got 2/3 of the Thrown Bricks. Jocasta was an easy early purchase to sit in the Field. She was soon joined by SP//dr and finally X-23. I did add in a single Parasite to ensure I would be at the magic number of 10 A. Once the stage was set, it did not take long to work my way over to S.T.A.R. Labs. When the Beaker hit, I made sure to Prep as much as possible to fire it off. X-23 ended up at 16 A, which got fired into the face of Jocasta. SP//dr made this into 32 damage that got rebounded into my Opponent’s face.
An interesting take on Orbital Strike, with some Human Outlanders and Absorbing Men to maximize the damage potential. After my previous game, I remembered my lesson from last time I ran this combo. I didn’t need X-23. I needed SP//dr and a couple Parasites to have the same effect. An early Jocasta purchase cost me the Brick race. I had the chance for 2, but got blinded by greed and only ended up with one. That would slow be down a bit. This time, I ignored X-23 and ran into SP//dr and Parasites. I had a few copies of S.T.A.R. Labs cycling through my bag and it took a while for everything to line up in place. When it did (and thanks to his Acererak Global), I had an 11 A Parasite infested SP//dr attacking my Opponent. It took him a minute to see the trick, but when he did it was 22 damage coming through thanks to Jocasta taking a hit off the Beaker.
For the last game of the night, I was up against Switch and giant Overcrushing Ally fueld Batmen. The easy play would have been to pivot over to Jubilee here, but I decided to dive head first and challenge the Switch head on and see if I could just roll through her. I took all of the Bricks in this one, and at least one of them kept rolling past his Switch (it was actually kind of crazy). It did not take long to get all of my pieces on the Field. However, I could not roll a Bolt and Shield at the same time to save my life. It took forever for me to even purchase S.T.A.R. Labs in this game. While I was struggling for energy, he was getting his big bad Bats ready to strike. He had two out but it was not enough for lethal thanks to Jocasta threatening to redirect the damage his way. I knew when his third Bat hit, I would be in trouble. Thankfully, the Beaker came out first after taking way too long to purchase. The lucky Brick must have rubbed off of this one and it rolled through Switch without an issue. I sent a 16 A SP//dr through for the 32 damage hit thanks again to Jocasta.
** An interesting situation almost came up in this game and I was not exactly sure how it would have played out. Let’s imagine he had all 3 of his Overcrushing Batmen out. I had Jocasta and enough blockers to slow him down, but I would have still taken lethal damage from two of the Bats. The one blocked by Jocasta would have dealt lethal damage to my Opponent (thanks to the redirect and doubling effect of SP//dr). We are both going to die here. Who dies first?
I love this boomerang Team. This is probably the third variation of it that I have played. All have included Jocasta and S.T.A.R. Labs. Each other one had different tools to get the job done. They seem to get better and better with more tools being added from newer cards.
If I had remembered my lessons from the last time I built this Team, I would have dropped X-23 for something else. She was great, but unnecessary when SP//dr and Parasite can do the same job. Given that I would drop X-23 with this, I would definitely think twice about using Mysterio. I am generous, but don’t need to be THAT helpful to my Opponent. I could have gone with the OG PXG, but I am not a fan of that Global. Maybe some other Ramp option would be good here.
Parasite was the missing piece to the original combo. His ability to add his stats to SP//dr just made it fire off so well. Most times one SP//dr, two Parasites, and a Jocasta were enough to get the job done when the Beaker hit.
On that note, the Beaker is the key to this whole thing. Without it, it would be much trickier to send a large amount of damage over to Jocasta in one shot.
I was lucky that there were no ping Globals in any of my matches. Jocasta could have easily been shut down as I needed to wait until the Attack Step to fire off my combo. An early Main Step ping of her could have wrecked my night.
Jubilee was only a back-up plan here, and I never once thought about buying her. She was nice to have on the Team just in case. Thrown Brick is still one of my current favourite Ramp engines. Sure it is risky giving your Opponent access to these, but it is worth it in my opinion. Everything else worked as you would have expected it to.
The one thing this Team really lacked was control, and that was honestly by design. My gut said that everyone would be running and gunning in this one with very little control out there. I was ok leaving myself a little vulnerable to focus solely on my win condition. To be fair though, S.T.A.R. Labs could have acted as removal if needed (and I do believe I used in for that in one of my games). I am not sure I could have gotten away with this on a regular night’s build.
There were some interesting one hit kill Teams out there tonight. Some have even given me some ideas for some future shenanigans.
How would you deal 20 damage in one shot? What would be your weapon of choice? Let us know in the comments below!
Thanks for reading!