Here’s the next article with some post-UKGE event coverage. It’s yet another glorious treat of a guest post from none other than Mr Fahrenheit himself; the Tabasco Rogue.
Jo did super-well on the day so enjoy his thoughts!
Oh, and to hear from more of the day’s competitors, including the winner, be sure to tune in to our UKGE special on the Ministry of Dice podcast next Monday!
OK… over to the Rogue…
I’d love to tell you the story of how I broke the mold with an off-meta team, accepting Andy’s “gauntlet challenge”, and won the UK Games Expo’s MoDPDM, but this isn’t that story. I feel it necessary to preface this write up with my challenges as a rogue team builder, and purveyor of jank, during the months leading up to the tournament.
In March I was getting frustrated with the little options in post rotation Modern Dice Masters. Infinity Gauntlet had been spoiled up to about 95% (missing a few super rares) but hadn’t landed in stores, and I had already been brewing with teams based on the spoilers I knew about in preparation for an origins tournament that I knew wasn’t going to happen. After losing a game in the WDA I took the loss a little too personally and decided to take a break from Dice Masters until new sets would breathe new life into the format and I could stop being such a baby. A lengthy break from March to June helped me prepare for several big online events, one of which was the illustrious event run by the fine team behind the Ministry of Dice. Now back to our regularly scheduled article.
After placing 2nd in the Dice Fight XL with a control variant using the Rare Collector and Rare Nebula with Awaken, with fun moves like bringing in Gazer on the opponent’s main step to intimidate off their win cons, or a Parasite to blank their control cards, I decided to use another team that I was excited for. Ever since I drafted with the common Collector during the preview draft at Worlds last year, I have been enamoured with the card. I was eager to use the Collector in most of my builds, but I knew one specific combo that would guarantee maximum damage for little energy output. Those in the Dice Masters community know me for a few things; my love for Instant War/Tabaxi Rogue, Hela/Beholder, AND, the hero of this team; Poison Ivy – Criminal Because of Love. Aside from being an awesome win con, Poison Ivy allows you to KO the die itself, or another character that you want to field again on the following turn. The common Collector’s when fielded ability let’s you abuse Ivy’s ability since you knock the character out that you fielded at lvl 1 at the end of the turn.
Knowing that I could field both Collector and Poison Ivy each turn to increase the damage by fielding newly purchased Ivys, I set about building the rest of the team to help make purchasing easier, as well as countering the “boogiemen” of the current modern format. Borrowing from my previous list, I used Asuka – Empress of Tomorrow as a non-symmetrical cost reduction, and an aggressive attacker should I need her. I was struggling with control options while doing extensive testing with Shadowmeld, Elliot, and ComicsMike. I played every day for three and a half weeks to make sure my purchase order, and bag management were committed to memory so I could focus on pivoting when facing a challenge, or bad rolls. I landed on The Rock – Know your Role as a way to get rid of multiple God Catcher tokens in case my defensive two cost god catcher dice weren’t enough. I was still missing that extra ‘oomph’ that would help me get around tech pieces, while still being efficient enough to interact with opponent’s pieces. I happened upon an article from our lovely Canadian Champ Laurier (ccm0007) about his use of Black Widow – Widow’s Hunt and how it excelled at control.
A few days before the start of the event I decided to test with Black Widow in the place of Zatanna, and the results were very different, in a good way. With my team finally put together I entered the stage of worry and anxiety. This was the second event that I was going into that had some of UK/EU’s finest competitors, in addition to previous World and Nats champions in the US and abroad so the pressure was on.
The morning of the tournament I tried to distract myself with household chores, a hearty breakfast and lunch, and spending some time with my family before spending the rest of my day looking through a computer screen at my virtual opponent. Team lists were put out and I was excited to see so many different brews. I had tested against Shadowmeld’s non-meta teams and against Rob Pettafor’s Green Lantern team so I was pretty knowledgeable of the non-Becky/GC matchups, and I was hoping to see different approaches. Matt Brewer was my first opponent with his take on the God Catcher/Becky team.
I started Game 1 after winning the roll. Buying two Black Widows and keeping them out of the used pile with Clayface helped me purchase an Asuka and prep turn 2. Matt’s rolls weren’t providing him with the mask he needed for Clayface activation’s of his own but he was able to field a God Catcher from Storm’s when fielded ability early turns. I continued to press through, only purchasing the rock mid game once he purchased his Eddie Guerrero’s. Unfortunately, with only two actual God Catcher dice, his rolls weren’t favoring him and he couldn’t keep anything fielded as my two to three Black Widows were landing on energize every turn. Game 2 was better for Matt as he cleaned up his purchases and led with an early God Catcher. Unfortunately I was able to scoop up his Confront the Mighty early and take out his tokens with my sidekicks. I managed to clean the game up on turn 10 with two Ivys, and two Asukas. I won both games pretty handily due to missed rolls and some tight bag management. Being able to use two Clayface globals really accelerates my team once my Asuka is active and I’m buying characters for one to two masks.
1 – 0
My second round opponent was Ronathan rocking an awesome Jubilee rush list. He used Yawning Portal and Gamora to purchase Jubilee – Jubilation Lee and field them for free and swing for massive amounts of damage. I missed two key Collector rolls on turn 4 and turn 5 after setting up my Asuka and Black Widows. This game took forever because both of us kept missing rolls and I never once reached for Poison Ivy until it was too late. You can catch it on the CR Gameroom YouTube channel a week or two after this article to see where I lost, and I wasn’t too proud of my performance. Ron is a great competitor and went on to make short work of other opponents in the tournament placing 6th overall.
1 – 1
The third round was me up against the phenomenal artist, and all around great guy, Stu_Art and his Lita “fish slap” team. I have to say that his inclusion of The Great Drunkard – Built for Defense was a fantastic call. We had already faced each other before during testing so we both knew what we were in for. Game 1 Stuart managed to have Atlantis out and rolling by turn 3 and rolled all of his dice, even fielding a Black Widow and Great Drunkard. Unfortunately, with two Collector globals I was always able to keep enough blockers to stay ahead while he had to worry about maneuvering around a flooded bag. My Black Widows helped me maintain enough energy to push his attackers back and that gave me the win after fielding two Ivys consecutively in the late game. Game 2 saw Stu’s rolls line up for a perfect storm, but my rolls were coming up with exactly what I needed every turn after. I went for The Rock early as opposed to grabbing The Collector. The Rock helped me get rid of the Great Drunkard tokens and I was able to build up a huge wall of widows and sidekicks to swing lethal to close out the match.
2 – 1
Whipp3t_GOOD was my 4th round opponent with his tuned Green Lantern team. This was an interesting match as he kept missing his Lantern rolls and I kept his field light with my widows. Unfortunately, we ran into a situation where we stalled out mid game as neither he, nor I, could make any good attacks with our wall of sidekicks and control pieces since we both always had enough masks to Static Field things back. It came down to me fielding Poison Ivy enough times to knock him down to 7 life and swing with 12 characters (yes, all of my sidekicks were fielded) on the final turn. That match lasted us 43 of the 45 minutes in the round and Whipp3t, being the gentleman he was, decided to call it there since he wouldn’t be able to win a game in two minutes.
3 – 1
When the final round arrived, thanks to ties and byes, I was up against the Deadpool of Dicemasters, awesome token and alt art card creator, Reg Sims and his take on the super rare Thor list. I’ll admit, the nerves and long matches got to me and in game 1 I messed up so much sequencing, and misplays that I looked like a totally inexperienced player. Reg was well into several shots since he decided to create a mini-game, and very inspired playmat based on taking shots for each time Thor, or God Catcher dealt damage to his opponents so he was playing more for enjoyment than anything else. Reg’s team had me down to low life totals both games, and quite honestly that team is very intimidating, even though I had all the pieces to beat it I was still sweating. The first game he missed both of his early turn Thor rolls and I was able to keep the god catchers at bay with a couple of his Confront the Mighty dice. Game 2 he chose to take the control route and go for Drax and Eddie Guerrero before buying his Under Surveillance and God Catchers when his Thor dice didn’t roll. It was towards the last couple of turns that my Black Widow was able to spin his team down to allow my Poison Ivy to clear the board and swing for lethal. Reg is a very kind and forgiving player even in the face of having his characters constantly spun down to single energy.
4 – 1
I really appreciate the efforts of the MoD crew, as well as all, involved in making the tournament a smooth and exciting process. My takeaways from this event are that practice makes a world of difference, but even after all that, keeping a cool head and a calm demeanor will help you win games.