Hi folks – welcome to the next instalment of our UKGE post-event coverage – yet another awesome tournament report to sink your teeth into!
This article was written by JackalopeSpam – our 4th pace entrant on the day and all round top bloke.
Remember to tune in to the latest episode of the Ministry of Dice podcast on Monday for even more coverage – including an exclusive interview with the day’s winner.
On to Jackalope’s report. Enjoy!
It’s MODPDM at the UKGE online and Andy has thrown down the gauntlet to break the meta. Chris sabotaged him by offering sweet prizes. Whatever will I do to win those X-Men animated series prize cards? “I’ve God to Catcher them all”.
I knew going in what the top of the meta has been. Infinity Gauntlet has added some new toys, but I find it lacking in innovative win conditions (Thor aside). Really; it adds more for the Control player with solid removal. That removal: the spin of a character dice to energy faces, which doesn’t do anything to tokens. As yet action dice don’t have a solid counter either. My heart tells me to play something janky, but the meta points me to God Catcher. It was the win condition that bested me twice at Earth X Origins and if you can’t beat them join them. I really wanted those X-Men promos.
So yes, I ignored Andy and basically included all the cards he said not to play. On to the team…
We know the main Win Condition is God Catcher. At EXO, it was paired with Under Surveillance to make it unblockable. That’s a solid strategy. With God Catcher having 10 attack, the opponent basically has 2 life. So forget pump globals to boost it, go for efficiency of getting more God Catchers cycling. Thrown Brick was there to boost ramp and that cycling potential. Not to mention it could trigger another God Catcher to the field.
Most turns are going to follow the same mantra “Becky, Thor, God Catcher” to prep a discounted God Catcher spending a total of 3 energy. What do you do next turn? The same thing so you can start triggering God Catchers. This speed and efficiency would help to get an early punch in while the opponent’s field is wide open. After a couple turns go by (or you’re out of God Catchers) switch to Under Surveillance to make them unblockable.
The more important pivots and decisions happened when brute force wasn’t going to work. For that I brought Eddie Guerrero to stop any Static Fields. Drax was there to block an opposing win Condition if I needed to stall for time. Spider-Man to spin down their control pieces. And Becky could be another threat or removal.
The best control plan was with Scott Hall. The force attack was a great removal option. I could force them to attack only to be blocked by a God Catcher or just let it walk through to the used pile. Remember life is a resource, so I could take some chip damage. Just in case they decided to use Scott Hall against my control, I had R Angela to give it infiltrate. So I could get damage and keep it in the field. Thor could also serve as damage, if it came to that.
On to the rounds…
Round 1: JacquesBlonde with a SR Thor direct damage strategy.
I saw the match and knew I was in for trouble. He’s won titles and is not to be underestimated, no matter what he says.
It was a fun match though.
I went brute force and eventually wore him down with enough 10/10 attackers. He didn’t have solid removal, but I was on a clock. The character I KO’d gave him one more to field with Thor. It was close, but I eventually overwhelmed him with 8 God Catchers in the Field. There was no way he’d get past that.
In Game 2 I decided that it worked once, so try again: overwhelm him with tokens. This time he decided not to spend half the match rolling Thor as double energy. His plan of getting Thor out quick and using Instant War was devastating. I couldn’t match the speed and he won game two with hardly any time left on the clock. I had underestimated him. Game 3 I knew I couldn’t take, he could prep a Jubilee and be ahead on life. That’s how it crumbles.
This game was recorded, and you can check out all the laughs & excitement here:
At one point I ran out of dice or tokens so I used a stapler. It’s not the first time that’s happened.
Round 2: Collector Rob with Green Lantern
Feeling a bit down on my luck, I needed to battle my way back up to the top. Seeing Rob I knew I could have fun at least. He had Static Field and hardly anything but mask characters on his team. But he brought me Clayface, so that should help me with speed. I could overwhelm to where he wouldn’t have enough masks.
I also had Eddie to counter. The main trouble was going to be Poison Ivy with Deadly! She could clear my tokens away and stay in the field. He even had the Doctor Strange global to force my attackers with Masks or Bolts. I had to dance a bit as he churned through his bag fast using Ork Nob swarm. Fortunately, I caught him off guard and forced a Poison Ivy to attack and let it through. I had already done it to numerous sidekicks as well to keep his field thin.
When Ivy came back, I used a Spider-Man that had been sitting in the field for a few turns. Spider-Man and Eddie cleared it out and I ran over him with numbers.
Game 2 was much quicker, namely because he had trouble rolling the masks he needed to get started. I think he had a Drax that blocked my Spider-Man, but he just didn’t have the numbers again. At one point I even forced his Asuka to attack through, he had no momentum.
Round 3: BenzinoScott45 with God Catcher and Under Surveillance
Great, a mirror match. We brought 6 of the same cards. There were going to be a lot of God Catchers and not a lot of decisions. This one really came down to rolls. Each turn we’d call out the mantra, “Becky, Thor, God Catcher” and hope for the best. Some of the other BACs were purchased, but didn’t do much. It was all about going wide or going unblocked. Missing rolls in this match left you with a God Catcher trap in the field and no blockers. In both games I got in an early chip, then switched to Unblockable. Benzino is a great guy, but this was not an exciting mirror match.
Round 4: Mbrewer with God Catcher and Under Surveillance
Well, he’s a second mirror match in a row. I had a feeling this could happen. He at least brought me some different tools to use.
Clayface added to efficiency again and Atlas is great for bag flow. He had better ideas than me. His plan was to purchase God Catcher or Under Surveillance, Clayface it in on energy, then field Storm to go for the grand slam! It was great brewing, but it only works 50% of the time. This was not that time. We did play a little more chess in this match because we couldn’t keep sidekicks in the field. Best blocker for a God Catcher, another God Catcher! It removed both and would force some interesting decisions. Unfortunately he only had 2 God Catcher Dice to my 4. Overwhelming numbers prevailed. It was scary though when he had 3-4 of the Under Surveillance. We had a great chat after until my internet skipped a beat. Sorry to cut out on you Mbrewer.
Round 4: Peter VdV with Iceman and Turk
I knew this was a good team and Peter could play it well. I had considered the team myself, but knew I didn’t have the practice for it. Not that I practiced much, but I’ve played God Catcher more than once and never Turk with Iceman. I thought I could outpace him and I was wrong. Very wrong! He got Iceman quick and piled on damage. He got me to 12, the magic number in no time. Eventually he swung in with sidekicks, Iceman, and Turk, all buffed with Avengers ID Card. Game 2, I needed to pivot. Turns out Spider-Man is tremendously disruptive when you need two active characters. I got him off guard, swarmed him with numbers for a win.
That left a little time for game 3, not my best case scenario as Iceman was fast and I didn’t build my God Catchers to be nearly as close. There wasn’t enough time to finish the game so I thought I would see a repeat of round 1, losing by life at time. I got some lucky rolls in this match. We had both fought over Thrown Bricks in the previous matches. This card won me the game. I kept his field lean and forced a sidekick through hitting me for 1. I could let him have blockers because I didn’t have enough turns to play God Catchers and make them unblockable. In a deciding move, I used my Thrown brick to KO another of his sidekicks, letting me hit for 10. He didn’t get Iceman and Turk fast enough to come back at me.
This round was streamed by Ross on the Weekly Dice Arena. It should be a good match to watch if you find the clip.
So I finished with one of the best win:loss ratios you could hope for. I wasn’t going to win, so I had to count on tiebreakers which landed me in 4th place. Not so bad, but it was one slot out of Animated Series promos. I scoffed at Andy’s challenge and failed getting the coveted prizes by 1 spot. Had I practiced more, I might have seen the potential of Thor and Iceman to outpace me. Perhaps I could have gone faster with God Catcher or swapped to a slower start to control the opponent first. I certainly learned from my round 1 mistake by round 5.
Would I play this team again? I’m not sure. It isn’t a tremendously fun team as it’s more of an autopilot, “Becky, Thor, God Catcher.” It’s effective though and definitely one to consider in a competitive meta. The best card on the team was probably Scott Hall. That can throw people off their game so much. I’m sad I never tried my backup plan of Angela, Spider-Man, Eddie for removal and infiltrate. I have plans to give that a proper spotlight sometime. My backup team idea centered on those three. Maybe next time I’ll take up Andy’s Gauntlet and play to my more janky style.
Overall the Ministry can put on a spectacular event. The rounds kept pace as promised with each starting approximately at the hour. There was plenty of information provided in the lead up to the event and I particularly enjoyed having the start of tournament briefing as a video. I could queue it up as I was setting up. Maybe someday I’ll journey across the pond to play a MODPDM event in person. Further the Ministry was very generous in prizing. In the end I was rewarded for my filthy team by winning the raffle for the Animated Series promos as desired. That probably shouldn’t be the moral of the story, but I’m ending there nonetheless.