Format: Casual Golden Age (Modern recommended)
This week, I wanted to build around a card that seems like a bit of a hidden gem. The Batman. But not the giant self-buffing Batman that everyone loves. Instead, I chose what I believe is…
The Hero Gotham Deserves
The Team: Striking Terror into Opposing Hearts
Batman is, of course, the core of this team. The intent is to use him to turn my sidekicks into glass cannons that just charge at my opponent.
To complement this, I needed to add some allies. I chose Wong and Robin. Wong is a cheap Ally with good stats, and Fast can serve as a strong defensive ability against Overcrush. Robin was added primarily because he’s thematic, but his effect is useful against Magic Missile’s global, forcing my opponent to waste at least 2 bolt energy to get a sidekick off the field instead of one.
With sidekicks and allies being the main means of damaging my opponent, Insect Plague was an obvious fit. Making, say, a level 3 Wong unblockable while I have Batman active results in 6 unblockable damage. If the game stalls, that’s a good way to take large chunks of life off of my opponent.
As for the rest of the team, Shriek is there for blanking as usual, Resurrection serves for ramp and churn, and Jarnbjorn is there for the sidekick fixer global.
A quick note on Black Widow and Hulk: They were put in as a secondary strategy in case my main guys get shut down somehow (full credit to jourdo for the idea of adding Hulk, by the way). However, both have solid globals that serve to add damage (Hulk) or act as removal (Widow). These two cards are easy to add to any aggressive team, and will both help your strategy while adding another path to victory.
With that said, on to the games!
I started off against the same Immortals team that beat me last week. He bought Green Devil Mask to slow me down, but he otherwise couldn’t roll a character all game. Wong and Batman rushed him down for huge chunks of damage, bringing him down to 1 life. GDM or not, he lost the following turn to a sidekick made unblockable by Insect Plague. I won.
I went up against Boom Boom + Morph, which was using Target Lock, something I expected after last week. For this game, I only used 2 dice outside of my sidekicks: one Batman die and one Wong die (ok, I bought a Magic Missile die near the end of the game, but it was too late to be relevant). The rest of the time, I rolled for sidekicks and used energy for globals. My intent was to rush down and outpace Boom Boom + Morph with my buffed sidekicks. It worked, but just barely; his Target Lock repeatedly got my Wong out of the way, but I rolled enough sidekicks (and Batman pretty much always stayed on the field) to keep the pain going anyhow. He got me down to 4 life, but he was down to 1 life at that point. I then won by making a sidekick unblockable with Insect Plague.
For my final game, time to play against a Golden Age Two-Face team. With Wong, though, I had the perfect counter, since Wong’s Fast stops Two-Face in his tracks. I used his PXG and Chalkboard ramp to get Batman and a bunch of Wongs really quickly. He used Hellblazer to slow me down, but it was only delaying the inevitable; I eventually purchased Widows as well to force him to pick whether to blank Widow or Wong (not the best choice to have to make!). I eventually swung in with a bunch of Wongs and sidekicks, with Batman active, for way, way too much damage. I won.
-Batman is crazy. I am impressed at just how potent he is. Not only is the attack buff on sidekicks very strong, but it’s worth attacking with him too, as opponents will rarely want to let him through unblocked due to his big stats.
-I could’ve taken out almost half of this team (didn’t buy Robin or Web at all, almost never had to use Shriek) and it would hardly have had any impact. Batman + Wong was just that effective a combo.
-The whole Widow + Hulk secondary strategy didn’t get used much (though Widow was great Hellblazer bait in the third game), but just having that threat changed how my opponents played. It was awesome just to have the option.
So overall, I think I got hyped around the wrong Batman, personally; the one that gets buffed by sidekicks gets hard to manage for sure. But this Batman makes everyone around him hard to deal with. I’ll have to try the other Batman sometime, but this one’s a winner for sure.