If you are looking for serious gameplay in this article, you might want to skip it. If you are looking for something off the wall, then I have a treat for you!
Out of the Endgame Night from last week was born this silly variant. Thanos was still central to the theme, but we wanted to make him a little risk/reward. The concept was simple. Build your Team normally (without restrictions). The catch was that under each of these cards (excluding your BAC’s) was one of two things. Either Thanos, or dust. Let me explain that a little better.
You were allowed to choose 3 copies of Thanos (one that used each of his different coloured dice). These cards were set aside from your regular Team and each card could only have one die on it. You shuffled identifier cards along with 5 “dust” cards and your opponent randomly dealt them onto your mat face down. You placed your cards on top of these cards.
When you managed to field a character, you had the option to “dust” him/her. The meant you flipped the card underneath that character’s card and looked at the result. If it was a “dust” card, you immediately removed the card and all copies of the dice from the game. If it was Thanos, you still removed the dice from play but you just purchased Thanos for free. Once Thanos was revealed, you could no longer “dust” characters.
So each Team had 3 copies of Thanos on it. You just did not know where he was, or what copy of him you were going to get to play with.
These were the guys I decided to shoot for:
What Did You Play?
The Team: Surprise Thanos!
So I knew I had 3 shots at Thanos with this Team. I decided I would build with some cheap characters that I was willing to lose and balance it out with a couple of things that could actually win.
Kobold, Morphing Jar, and Poxwalker were there only for their purchase cost. They would be great early game purchases and as soon as they are out… Dust ’em. Maybe I get Thanos for 1? If I strike out with one of them, at least I have a couple other to try my luck with.
I guessed that people would be thinking similarly as me and would be going with the cheap-o’s. Kobold was the one I honestly expected to see the most. So… I decided to throw in an Adventurer to maybe gain some Experience. Aasimar Paladin looked good for two reasons: 1. He has the Experience keyword, and 2. His ability actually helps out Sidekicks while Kobolds are around. Not bad actually.
Without an actual wincon yet, I decided to put all of my eggs in one basket. Patch and the ID Card were there to partner with the unblockable Thanos. All I wanted to accomplish this night was sending a level 3 Thanos through for 18 damage. Dream big… right?
With not much space left, I needed some form of control and contingency. Venom was dusted off because I expected some low defence characters out there. He would take care of the bulk of them making their Field significantly thinner. Blob was there in case everything was going wrong and I needed to get something off the Field.
Prep was the name of the game for my BAC’s. Thrown Brick and Resurrection are my standard “go-to’s” for this situation.
Basically, the random game of Dice Masters was going to come down to the random flip of a card. Let’s see how it goes.
Up against a Dragon-based Team with some of the cheap characters I was expecting. Early Poxwalker and Kobold for me. I also purchased Aasimar Paladin right away to help control his Kobold swarm. All my characters came out quickly and I immediately dusted Pox Walker… and found my unblockable Thanos. Could the dream become a reality in Game 1? Not with Static Field across the table. He managed to get his own unblockable Thanos and then it was both of us bouncing the opposing Titan back over and over. I built up a decent Field but was short on damage due to the extra “blockers” Static Field provided. Breath Weapon eventually cleared my stuff out for easy lethal.
Up against our resident youngster. However, there was a dad and his two kids who were interested in learning the game. We tossed Thanos aside to play by “normal” rules and walk them through what we were doing. Morphing Jars and Nick won the game with an empty Field across the board. 8 damage from an avenging doorbell is kind of funny.
Since there was still lots of time in the round, we then asked if one of the boys wanted to give it a try. They had some Justice League cards, sou we went through them and had him build a 4 card Team of some characters he liked. Our resident youngster played against this young guy while I sat beside him and coached him. It was cute watching the little guy just get excited by rolling the dice. I eventually had to tag out for another veteran to take over the coaching and play my next round. I assume it went well and the young boy was DQ’ed for having a coach during his game. 😉
The usual cheap characters with an unblockable Yuan-Ti and Parasite. I struggled to get stuff out in this game. The dice probably didn’t like my joke from last round and decided to turn on me. I was taking it pretty hard to the face, and my first dusting of my Kobold failed. I was down to 3 life and he got his Thanos by dusting his Parasite before I could really get going. Luckily his bag was clogged and there was a good chance Thanos was not coming back for a while. I slowly built up my forces and got Nick out with Venom. That was where the tide turned. When I fielded Venom, all he had were Sidekicks which were immediately wiped out. A quick push with a few new Avengers recruits gave me 16 damage and lethal. I would have been dead the next turn when his Thanos showed up. I never found mine in this game, but got less willing to gamble as the match went on.
A fun little exhibition game against Clayface. Yeah… that one, but he was going to use the character AND the Global. He had all of the energy fixers on board to make it easier too. Same strategy as before. Buy Pox, Kobold, Morphing Jar and dust ’em ASAP. Pox Walker was first onto the Field and sure enough… Double Overcrushing Thanos was hiding under there. I started with a repeat of the last game where I was not rolling well and took 10 to the face from Clayface. My only saving grace was that he was thinning his Field with the energy fixers to make Clayface work more consistently. Billy Clubs were removing my stuff with great effectiveness. He also had a Cyborg that was going to make Thanos less effective, so I had to work around that. Blob was finally bought in this game. I managed to build a Field and get Blob out to take out Cyborg. I also had plenty of masks to recruit new Avengers for plenty of damage. My Thanos never rolled in this game.
Side note: Nick Fury and Avengers ID card is just ridiculous. I could have gone for more unblockable options to make it even better, but my endgame was Thanos.
The Team build for this is really not that important. You need things you are willing to lose and a couple things to let you win. Pretty simple here.
I actually enjoyed this format quite a lot. I love things that allow the big bodies to come out easier. What is better than a 1 cost Thanos? Nothing! If you enjoy throwing a monkey wrench into the regular Dice Masters games, I highly recommend trying something like this out. It doesn’t have to be Thanos, but he seems to be the hot thing right now. It also helps that he has 3 different dice to use for this one. Try it… you’ll like it.
Have you tried a variant like this? How would you build your Team in order to capitalize on a character you don’t even know if you will get? Which versions of the Mad Titan would you have included? Let us know in the comments below.
Thanks for reading!