Splinterlands Share Your Battle Challenge: DRAGONS!

Splinterlands Share Your Battle Challenge: DRAGONS!

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I would like to take a moment and thank the team for coming up with this amazing challenge. Dragons are my very favorite! I absolutely adore this cute cuddly little creatures and they help me win matches by charming the opponent with their cuteness. I mean, just look at Delwyn Dragonscale! If that's not a charmer, you'll have to tell me what is. Dragons are a special breed around here and their interaction with the remaining splinters is really quite interestingly designed. I like that there are dragon summoners, and that special dragon cards can only be used if a dragon summoner is used. The very fact that it took me a while to even understand this when I was first getting to grips with the game is a good sign, since I believe it was definitely worth understanding and the game has been enriched by this feature. I am also going to... avoid... making the obvious reference to the Mother of Dragons, Breaker of Chains, the Unburnt, Dan...

Onto the card art first! Ahh this is a tough one! There are so many dragon cards. Some of them have beautiful designs, some of them are glorious alpha cards, and one of them is simply my favorite so without further ado....

Let's have a look at some card art for one of my favorite Dragon cards:

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Manticore! What a beautiful... uh... well, majestic creature!


My opinion on the card design: Not that my opinion matters, but ... ok yes, my opinion matters. I'm writing this! MY opinion is that this card looks terrifying! I like that the purple makes it even more ominous. Manticores are, after all, meant to be absolutely terrifying creatures. It looks horrendous all right, so +100 points for that. I have to question the face a bit, since traditionally we expect a Manticore to have the head of a man, and this... well, I mean it COULD be a man, but the purple tongue and the structure of the teeth would give any orthodontist a run for their money. Then again, a hairdresser would perhaps be slightly more impressed, or at the very least inquire as to what kind of hair product this creature is using to be able to maintain bright and clean hairy in its otherwise toxic environment. I give the card design a Solid B+

My History with this card: I have a friend who constantly gushed about this card until I couldn't avoid it any longer, so I rented it once. I rented it at level 1. It was amazing. Then I rented it at level 2. It was even more amazing. THIS CARD IS AMAZING!

Official Lore: "Another product of the twisted genetic experiments of the Gloridax is on the loose. The hybrid monster known as the Manticore is a cross between a Dragon, a Lion, a scorpion, and countless other monstrosities from which it draws its powers. Except when summoned to battle, the Manticore answers to no one." -Splinterlands.com

Unofficial Lore: A manticore is a mythological being that was believed to be invincible. The myth originates from ancient Persia! Bet you didn't know that! The word manticore itself is an adaption of the Persian name "martichoras". This is thought to loosely translate to ‘man eater.’ The powerful beast is best known for its strange but magnificent properties. It is often said that the animal had a human head, a lion's body, and a scorpion's tail. They are considered to be one of the most powerful animals and were able to devour every animal in the jungle.

Stats from Splinterlands:

Looking at these stats, ...

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Let's look at the level-ups and note any important milestones:

  1. Base level Stats as seen on the card

  2. An increase of 1 attack ~ This is where things really get going. I mean just look at this card at level two, for only 4 mana!

  3. An increase of 1 health

  4. An increase of 1 health and addition of THORNS. Important milestone here. Thorns is a very useful skill, which can completely destroy the frontline and subsequent opponents, as well as any opportunity or sneak attacks.

  5. The addition of attack - This is massive.

  6. An increase of 1 health

Recommended level:

Taking these milestones into account, a minimum of level 2 of this card is STRONGLY recommended, since keeping pressure on the opposing frontline in a consistent matter is important, especially against healing units. Level 4 is ideal of the addition of Thorns.

The battle! Click here for the BATTLE!

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Setting: Ranked match in Silver 2, month of December, 2021
Opponent: JKARL23, using one of the lovely new CL summoners at an opportune moment against my Delwyn.
Ruleset was the following....

  • Total Mana Cost Allowed: 32
  • Splinters Allowed: Life, Death, Dragon
  • Special Conditions: Reverse Speed, Earthquake

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Reverse speed means that the actual speed stats are inverted so that 1 becomes the absolute fastest speed. This ruleset is interesting as it gives a high dodge opportunity to simple units that combine 1 speed with some other dodge factor such as flying (Albatross comes to mind). As for earthquake, this means that any non-flying monster will take 2 damage each turn. Flying monsters are not damaged. This damage will hit armor before health, will hit Holy Shield, and will be reduced with any physical resistances.

Battle Plan

I considered several factors, but the most important here was that there are only two factions were available, and, of course, Earthquake. Many people like to use Brighton Bloom in this situation, who is also a Dragon summoner. However, I had rented a Delwyn and some choice dragon and death cards with the Flying ability already built-in, so why would I do that? I love Dragons! I expected the possibility, of course, of running into the mighty Kralus, so I took it upon myself to be sure to have enough damage going to the front of the opponent's line. I will explain in detail the choices I took, but it was very important for me to have a combination of flying and magic. I wanted magic because, since earthquake hits armor before health, many people like to use armor units in the earthquake ruleset. Also, I picked Delwyn, whose skill gives +1 magic damage, thus making magic dealing units a priority. Sometimes I use gelatinous cube as well.

View of the Battlefield

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Battle Lineup

Summoner: Delwyn Dragonscale. This is the one that people don't always see coming. You pay a heavy premium for the element of surprise here, since a 5 mana cost for a summoner that only give +1 stat is quite steep. However, it allows you to bring out additional potential for magic damage dealing units from factions which don't have their own summoner who can increase magic damage (these being Water and Earth).

Position 1: Djinn Chwala. A Dragon! I am a big fan of this unit. One important factor when it comes to earthquake is not to forget doing damage to the opponent as well. Although Chwala is not flying, it boasts a hefty amount of armor, and instead of endless survival it really uses itself to do as much damage as possible. It attacks with a respectable +2 melee damage, and, more than that, it also has Thorns, which means any melee who successfully hits Chwala will take 2 damage from thorns.

Position 2: Manticore! Yes, my favorite dragon card! In addition to being absolutely amazing, it only costs 4 mana to use, and it flies! It's literally perfect here.

Position 3: Dragon Whelp. Another Dragon! This is not a card you will see played often, but I like it. If you ask me, it only makes sense to play it with Delwyn, however, since it is otherwise a bit insignificant. Since I am using Delwyn, I'm getting 2 magic damage from a 3 mana card that also has flying and thus does not take damage from the ruleset. I like this!

Position 4: Phantom Soldier: This is not a dragon card, but a premium choice for Delwyn+Death splinter combination, which I am partial to myself. To be perfectly honest, I mainly have this card because I got a good CP/dollar value for it and I need the CP to maintain silver 2! Apart from that, however, it is flying, it is magic, and it has a substantial amount of HP.

Position 5: Venari Bonesmith: In hindsight, this choice may have been questionable. If the opponent hadn't used a card with Void (Bone Golem) in front row, then bonesmith would have been able to heal itself enough to stay alive through earthquake, since it isn't flying and will continuously take damage.

Position 6: Furious Chicken: This battle is not sponsored by KFC. Seriously. I wish it was!

Did it Work?

It did work! It worked in spite of getting massively unlucky with this opponent. My entire strategy hinged upon two things: avoiding ruleset damage with flying, and doing heavy magic damage with Delwyn. My opponent completely nullified the magic advantage by using a summoner that reduced my magic damage output by 1! What's worse, the -1HP it did to my team also got Bonesmith killed before it could properly life leech. AND on top of that, he used Bone Golem! What a guy! In this situation and all things considered, I do have to say that the team is strong, considering it flew up against the perfect counter. Good job dragons!

What did our Weekly Units do?

Honestly? Well well Dragons. I used a total of FOUR dragon cards for this odd little match. Delwyn... actually failed at his job, unfortunately, since we were completely countered in that respect. What about the rest? Chwala did a magnificent job taking down that pesky frontline with the combination of melee damage and thorns, as well as good tanking ability. Manticore, my favorite, was able to avoid all damage by being flying and contributed a bit to the overall damage but was not the MVP. Dragon Whelp- a key here. That extra 2 magic damage really did the trick. Great job!


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Based on this information, let's have a quick look at the current market value of the cards used inthis match in our COST ANALYSIS!

Level 1 Djinn Chwala:

Current Low price (1card): $1.510
Current Best price (per BCX): $1.510
Current High Bid: $1.473
Current Market Value: $1.473

Level 1 Delwyn Dragonscale:

Current Low price (1card): $13.950
Current Best price (per BCX): $5.491
Current High Bid: $11.831
Current Market Value: $5.941

Level 1 Dragon Whelp:

Current Low price (1card): $64.93
Current Best price (per BCX): $43.95
Current High Bid: $9.2
Current Market Value: $43.948

Level 1 Manticore:

Current Low price (1card): $13.99
Current Best price (per BCX): $8.863
Current High Bid: $12.250
Current Market Value: $8.863

Recommended Usage

Summoner(s): Dragon cards can always be used. I especially recommend them when you want to use key flying units, since the dragons have A LOT of these.
League: I would recommend dragon cards for all leagues.

Not Recommended when...

Most dragon summoners tend to have additional costs to use, so perhaps in low mana matches it would be worth considering which dragon summoner is being used and why.

Conclusions

I had a fantastic time using dragons. The conclusion was and remains that Manticore is amazing.

Personal Opinion

I will continue to use dragons, some of my favorites being Selenia Sky and Daria Dragonscale.

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Be sure to join Splinterlands if you enjoy a TCG that allows for a myriad of battle tactics. If you're interested, I invite you to utilize my referral link:
https://splinterlands.com?ref=letsjam



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