Posted by: thederangedbear | September 5, 2008

Freestyle Friday: The Ultimates!

Man, Ultimates v3 is so bad : (

Speaking of bad cards… I thought I’d talk about the Ultimates today!

I got these images off ebay and cleaned them up a bit with Photoshop. Hopefully they’re clear enough for your enjoyment!

Lets go:

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Thor
Version: Ultimates
Team: S.H.I.E.L.D.
Cost: 7
Flight: Yes
Range: Yes
17/14

Activate – Target opponent chooses your deck or Removed from play zone. He loses 1 endurance for each card in that zone.

When I first read this card I was like “Dang! You can burn then for 37 on activation!”

Then I re-read the card and saw the “he picks” clause.

: (

To get maximum value out of this card, we want the size of the Removed From Game zone and our deck to be as close as possible since your opponent will always pick the smaller one.

Over the course of a normal game, you’ll draw about twenty cards – four at the start, two for seven draw phases, and lets tack on an extra two for search effects – before you recruit your seven drop.

That’s forty cards remaining in your deck. If you remove half of those from the game, I think we’re looking at a fairly realistic scenario of Thor having “Activate – Target opponent loses 20 END.” which is really good, especially off initiative or if you can ready him multiple times.

(This is a gross simplification, since some of those cards from your hand might go to the removed from game pile, in addition, your opponent might help enlarge the RFG pile too, but I’d rather speculate about a scenario with as few external factors as possible.)

We could also make our deck larger, which would allow us to mill cards more recklessly while also increasing the maximum yield of Thor’s burn. More on this later.

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Liberation Day
Version: Ultimates
Plot Twist
Cost: 3

To play, remove an Ultimates character card in your hand from the game.
Search your deck for an Ultimates card, reveal it, and put it into your hand.

There’s nothing you can really say about this card. If you need to play it, you will. If you don’t, you won’t.

I believe the term is ‘role player.’

You can’t really ‘evaluate’ it as it’s quality is intimately bound to the strength of what it can fetch, which isn’t fully known yet.

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Hank Pym Giant Man
Version: Ultimates
Team: S.H.I.E.L.D.
Cost 4
Flight: No
Range: No
7/7

At the start of the combat phase, remove the top card of your deck from the game. If it’s an Ultimates card, put a +1/+1 counter on Hank Pym.

This guy is the stains.

What it really needed to be is:

“At the start of the combat phase, rally for an Ultimates card. If you succeed, put a +1/+1 counter on Hank Pym. Otherwise, remove it from the game.”

Or some variant of that. I don’t think that makes it too broken, as that would be somewhat similar to Mr. Fantastic, Critical Thinker. The standard for four drops is extraordinarily high, and this guy is either “slightly bigger” or “vanilla”. When you figure there are already four drops out there with slightly bigger stats and beneficial powers, this guy seems pretty bad.

I really think milling should just be left to this guy:

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Mr. Fantastic
Version: Ultimates
Team: Fantastic Four
Cost 3
Flight: No
Range: Yes
4/5

Activate, discard an Ultimates character card-> Remove the top ten cards of your deck from the game, then search your deck for a card and put it into your hand.

In a normal game, you can reasonably assume that you will activate a given character twice: The turn you recruit it and the one after it, just before you KO him to keep a bigger drop.

Thus, you can be fairly sure you will have removed twenty cards from your deck and have searched twice.

Sound familiar?

With regard to his cost: There’s a truism in CCGs that milling/burning/discarding cards from the top of your deck is functionally identical to them being on the bottom – in that you’ll never access them.

This is a bit different in VS due to the prevalence of search, however, his drawback can definitely be minimized to the point where it’s almost completely negligible. Moreover, his benefit is too good to ignore.

Remember what I said about playing a deck with more cards then usual? If you keep this guy each turn with your natural recovery effect, you will have the opportunity to activate him five times prior to your recruit on seven.

Potentially, in a 100+ card deck, one activation of Thor could all your opponent’s END away!

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Human Torch
Version: Ultimates
Team: Fantastic Four
Cost: 1
Flight: Yes
Range: Yes

Remove Human Torch from the game -> Stun target character with DEF 1.

This guys is really good.

Torch is a poor man’s Black Widow – Femme Fatale, but anything that can stun across the curve regardless of initiative deserves consideration.

Even if your opponent has no targets, he can remove himself from the game to diminish the breakthrough liability.

The most exciting thing to me, is that he’s a one cost legend. Legends tend to have extremely powerful effects attached to him, and the fact that all of the Torch’s effects are proactive and directly interfere with the board has a lot of interesting potential.

Something like:

Turn 5: Black Manta – Underwater Marauder
Turn 6: Namorita – Atlantean Warrior Princess, Floronic Man – Jason Woodrue, and… Human Torch, Ultimates.

Firewall , rebuy, Firewall, rebuy, Firewall, rebuy, Firewall.

Heat Wave.

Not sure how good this would actually be, but I hope you get my drift.

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Ultimate Human
Version: Ultimates
Plot Twist
Cost: 3

Ongoing: At the start of the combat phase, each player chooses a character he controls. When a character chosen this turn becomes stunned while in combat with another character chosen this turn, remove it from the game.

This card is terrible.

This card does basically what would normally happen in a game – you KO your smallest drops.

This card isn’t even necessarily enabler to the RFG archetype. Our goal isn’t so much to fill our RFG pile, as much as it is to keep it’s size close to our deck.

-=-=-=-=-

Anyways, that’s it for this week on tdBlog! Hope you enjoyed it!

To close off:

Adult, but 100% Safe for Work!

Peace,

-TDB

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Responses

  1. Ultimate Human isn’t necessarily terrible– I could see playing it in, for example, Golden Inmates. That deck tries for single-turn board wipes, usually leaning on effects that don’t require board commitment to cause KOS (Smiles and Hush, mostly), but often you don’t have enough of the no-commitment effects, and then you need lowbies to exhaust for KOs. Ultimate Human just provides another no-exhaust way to KO people when you’re running short– it requires some planning, but I shouldn’t be that tough to work to your advantage.

    Still not a fantastic card, but I can definitely see it being being helpful in the right deck.

  2. If you have two or three in play and you want to limit the number of characters in play (on both sides) it can be good.

    I guess. I’d be pretty pissed if most of these cards were my prize.


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