by Terence Jason Dorman
Halloween is my second favorite holiday of the year (behind Christmas, of course) and, fortunately, The Spoils allows me to celebrate my love for the holiday while playing my favorite card game. To do this, I simply have to make some fun decks with the five Epic A.S.S. promo cards released thus far.
While there certainly have been other Epic promos released since Arcane Tinmen took over The Spoils, only five of them fit nicely into the Halloween theme. It also helps that these five promos are based on the classic Universal Monsters that almost everyone grows up with.
Although this week's article is going up later than I had hoped due to Hurricane Sandy and her snowstorm brother, let's take a look at the five Halloween themed Spoils cards and how they can impact your casual games.
Before we begin, let's remember that the official Epic rules only allow one copy of an Epic card in a deck, so I will definitely be considering that when discussing each card.
High Priest Imhotep
Universal Monster Counter Part: The Mummy
It is probably unwise of me to start with my favorite of the five cards but I couldn't help it as I am going in order of the trades. I absolutely love this card. Arcanist has always been one of my favorite trades and this cards just feels like the kind of card that Arcanist needs to finally get aggressive.
Thankfully, though, this card isn't legal as it is absolutely amazing. This card keeps coming back every turn assuming it hasn't been removed from the game, and it does that all by itself. Imhotep doesn't need a Montgomery Blatherscythe or Dark Awakening to come back from the grave, he simply does it on his own without any effort from the owning player.
Add in the fact that he has an additional ability that makes him an offensive powerhouse and Imhotep really begins to shine. If Imhotep manages to break through to a faction, he is doing a whopping six damage, enough to turn the tide of most games.
This guy's stats make it possible for him to break through as he has high life and low speed. Normally low speed isn't valued, but low speed does have its advantages. In this case, having low speed makes it easier for Imhotep to punch the faction rather than having to assign damage to opposing characters. Simply put, slow and steady wins the race when Imhotep is involved.
Favorite Card Synergy: Unnatural Alteration
Universal Monster Counter Part: Count Dracula
I have a personal attachment to this card due to the fact that it is designed by fellow Team Hopper member and National Constructed Champion, Dan Sotelo. Add in the fact this card is extremely fun and you have a winner.
Count Mau's stats are completely off the wall with solid strength, high life, and somehow, even higher speed. Count Mau comes in with twelve speed, which is ridiculously high and seems like overkill, but it is certainly fun.
Count Mau's ability is probably one of the strongest of the five monsters as it has the potential to really decimate your opponent and leave them with no options. To put it plainly, if you have more resources than your opponent and Count Mau in play, you're going to have A LOT more resources than your opponent each turn he remains in play.
The ability to steal your opponent's resources, even temporarily, is new to The Spoils and obviously powerful. It takes away your opponent's ability to play cards and respond to your moves, which could leave them defenseless and in a very bad situation.
If you keep Count Mau in play for a handful of consecutive turns it can absolutely decimate your opponent and leave them with no options.
Favorite Card Synergy: Auction House
Universal Monster Counter Part: Frankenstein's Monster
This is the second Universal Monster card in a row to feature a twelve in one of the stats. This time it is life, and boy, that makes this guy hard to kill.
Fr4nk31f573in's Majig runs on tokens, which fits right in with Gearsmith and Arcanist builds. With those tokens the Majig gets a strength boost, meaning he can quickly become an offensive tank.
Friendly Hug is an ability that allows the Majig to pick off characters on the board for the low cost of depleting the Majig. This makes the Majig one of the best defensive characters in the game as he can both block a number of characters (if the opponent attacks a party) without dying AND take out a few along the way, including one that doesn't have to be in the battle.
Similar to the other two Epic monsters we have looked at so far, I wish this card was legal for play as it would be a blast to include it in some decks. Unlike the other two, though, this card definitely seems like it could be playable if it was tweaked a bit. The other two are just absolutely bonkers and I don't know how they could be changed for tournament play.
Favorite Card Synergy: 3cc3n7r1c 73chn1c14n
Mr. Talbot / The Wolfman
Universal Monster Counter Part: The Wolfman
I absolutely love the design of this card. Whoever came up with the art style of this card is a genius as it looks fantastic, even if it jars the senses a little bit the first time it is seen.
Similar to Fr4nk31f573in's Majig, this is another card that I think could work in actual tournament play, but the cost would definitely have to be amended. With that said, the card as is is absolutely stellar.
Stats wise, this card fluctuates between a 2/2/4 and a 4/4/6, flipping from average stats to amazing stats. The only way to accomplish this change is by drawing two cards in a turn, which can be expensive or really easy. Rogue has access to some start of turn draw, including Gambling Den (a personal favorite) and Community Chest, so there is potential for the change to be absolutely free.
Mr. Talbot also starts with Covert, which is a valuable keyword if you are looking to be aggressive. If you are in need of a blocker, though, Mr. Talbot comes equipped with a cheap way to remove his own Covert keyword, meaning you always have a high speed blocker available.
I kind of feel like this guy should have been in Seed 3 as he seems like perfect fit between the one cost Iohane and the three cost Ipsighast. Granted, that would give Rogue probably the strongest one-two-three punch in the game, but I think they've earned it.
Favorite Card Synergy: Free Trade Agreement
Universal Monster Counter Part: The Creature from the Black Lagoon
Designed by Director of North American Operations, Will Clark, Eucritta is one of my favorite cards because of how hard Will goofed when designing it. One of Eucritta's lines of text allows it to restore itself during battle. While it seems like it would work well with its ability to attack as many times as it wants each turn (which isn't an ability anyway as everyone can do that if they can restore), it actually doesn't work.
The rules dictate that all characters that survive a battle deplete at the end of battle. Usually this means that the blocking party will deplete as the attacking party is already depleted, which is probably why this line of text was put in erroneously.
Other than this oversight, though, the card is still pretty strong as a battle character. His stats are fantastic for the low cost of two, meaning he slides well into any Banker/Warlord Montgomery builds. Even if you included this card just for the stats, Eucritta would be worth it.
If you could find a way to restore Eucritta during your turn to capitalize on his stats then this card's value goes through the roof. Currently, though, the only real restore power is found with the Gearsmith Peppers, which means you lose the Monty synergy, unless you really want to get crafty with a three color deck.
Favorite Card Synergy: Ectological Hazard Suit
While it is a bit of a ways off, these cards will certainly seem some play in the Spring Epic Championships and I am really looking forward to building some wacky decks with them. Thankfully, though, these overpowered cards will only see tournament play on special occasions and won't be dominating the Constructed scene any time soon.
We can still dream, though.