Splinterlands Tactics: „Back to Basics Ruleset“ – How to boost your win rate
Hey there Splinters,
In my new series “Splinterlands Tactics” I would like to present to you more detailed analysis of the game’s battling mechanisms and of ways helping you to outsmart your enemies in combat. As I decided to focus on the upcoming “Modern Format” (only Chaos Legion, Dice and Untamed cards plus the corresponding Rewards series) going forward, also this series will mainly put cards and tactics usable in the Modern Format in the center of considerations. However, concepts and basic tactics explained should also work for older cards as they will be playable in the “Wild Format”.
This first part of the series is dedicated specially to one of the Splinterlands rulesets: Back to Basics. How does Back to Basics work. And which summoners and monsters are suited best for this ruleset. Let’s find out how to master Back to Basics and increasing your win rate there significantly…
Back to Basics - Core Mechansims
As the name of the rulesets implies, your monsters are restricted to their core card stats Attacking Power, Speed, Armor and Health Points. All their additional abilities will get lost with Back to Basics ruleset applying – no Heal for your Kron, no Affliction for Doctor Blight and so on.
Without their abilities life in the Back to Basics ruleset become particularly harder for Melee Attackers. They can now only attack from your team’s first position as their Reach, Opportunity, Snipe and Sneak abilities are disabled. This in mind, Melee attackers should not be your choice in a Back to Basics scenario. Something different only applies with respect to the first monster in your team, which can be a Melee Attacker – all the other cards in your team shouldn’t.
Ranged Attackers on the other hand can only deal damage from any but the center position – regardless of any Close Range ability they normally have. For back to basics this mean that you would have to ensure that to always have at least one non-Ranged Attack monster in front of your first Ranged Attacker. This basically means that in the end the use of ranged attackers always goes together with the cost for one additional card (that needs to be there as a buffer to your ranged attackers). As the Back to Basics battle is fought without abilities having one card less in your team to deal damage, regularly is a significant disadvantage. Thus, Ranged Attackers might also not be the best option for your core Best to Basics team.
Magic Attackers are basically what you want to go for, when it is Back to Basics time. They can deal damage from any position in the team. In addition, and different than Melee and Ranged Attackers, they do not have to cope with any armor your opponent’s monsters might be equipped with.
How to select the best Cards for your Back to Basics Team
Based on the initial thoughts outlined above, you will want to look out for a summoners which provides a buff to your Magic Attackers – or at least nerfs your opponent’s Magic Attackers. Against this background, you will most likely choose either the Earth Splinter and Obsidian (+1 for your Magic Attackers) or the Death Splinter and Thaddius Brood (-1 Magic Damage and -1 Health Points for your opponent’s cards). În the Wild Format of course Aldric should be a real beast (as usual and not only for this specific ruleset).
As no abilities for monsters are available, the essence of Back to Basics is raw power. Hence you will nevertheless rely on Magic Attackers and dodging will therefore not be a deal at all, the speed of the units on the field are only of minor significance. Battles will be won by the team which holds the best possible combination from highest fire power and highest health point. In this connection, basically two scenarios are conceivable:
With a rather low mana cap you have to evaluate which cards buy you the highest amount of damage and health per mana. Thus, a card will be the better the higher its quotient from the sum of damage plus health divided by its mana costs is.
(Damage + Health) / Mana = Max
As far as mana is not a scarce resource in your battle (particularly mana cap 40 and more), you do not have to look out for the best damage plus health per mana ratio. In these cases you can just go for cards which show the highest combined damage plus health value.
Damage + Health = Max
Changes through the Levels
A great Back to Basics cards must not be great on any card level. Cards can show a poor Back to Basics performance on their base card level but become great picks for this ruleset when maxed and vice versa. As a rule of thumb, you can say that the more abilities a cards learns while advancing through the levels, the worse its performance in Back to Basics fights becomes. Thus, e.g. most Legendary Cards perform better in this ruleset in the lower leagues. In the Silver Leagues and higher, where Legendaries can be used on higher card levels, their performance in Back to Basic fights regularly becomes worse, as they more benefit from new learned abilities than from an increase in their base stats. On the other hands, cards which have still on their max level not learned any abilities normally benefited from a higher increase of their base stats – often making them great choices for Back to Basics.
Best Cards for Back to Basics
Now that we have made up our mind on the basic concepts of Back to Basics and considered the core requirements for the cards selection, let’s become more specific. Below you can find lists for all relevant cards which are (currently) available and will be playable in the Modern Format. The core ideas behind the list – as mainly already summarized above are as follows:
Due to the more general thoughts above and the mentioned advantages of Obsidian and Thaddius, the tables are restricted to Earth and Death cards and neutral monsters;
For Earth monsters the plus 1 buff on Magic Attack provided by Obsidian is already counted in;
The first table “Best Cards for Back to Basic Ruleset Modern Format (Chaos Legion, Untamed, Dice and corresponding Rewards): Base Lvl Cards” rates the Magic Attackers to be used as your core team looking at their Level 1 stats;
The second table “Best Cards for Back to Basic Ruleset Modern Format (Chaos Legion, Untamed, Dice and corresponding Rewards): Max Lvl Cards” is similar to the first one but for cards on their max Level;
The third table “Best Cards for Back to Basic Ruleset Modern Format (Chaos Legion, Untamed, Dice and corresponding Rewards): Alternative 1st Position Tank - Base Lvl Cards” includes and rates Melee or non-attacking units on Level 1 that might alternatively to a Magic Attacker be used in the first position of your troops;
The last table “Best Cards for Back to Basic Ruleset Modern Format (Chaos Legion, Untamed, Dice and corresponding Rewards): Alternative 1st Position Tank - Max Lvl Cards” is similar to the third on but again for max Level cards;
The cards are ranked with respect to their damage plus health per mana ratio (Coefficient) and also their combined damage plus health value (Max Power). Whilst the Coefficient value will be the orientation point in rather low mana cap battles, the Max Power value will be the number to look at where there is plenty of mana for your fight.
Table 1: “Best Cards for Back to Basic Ruleset Modern Format (Chaos Legion, Untamed, Dice and corresponding Rewards): Base Lvl Cards”
Table 2: “Best Cards for Back to Basic Ruleset Modern Format (Chaos Legion, Untamed, Dice and corresponding Rewards): Max Lvl Cards”
Table 3: “Best Cards for Back to Basic Ruleset Modern Format (Chaos Legion, Untamed, Dice and corresponding Rewards): Alternative 1st Position Tank - Base Lvl Cards”
Table 4: “Best Cards for Back to Basic Ruleset Modern Format (Chaos Legion, Untamed, Dice and corresponding Rewards): Alternative 1st Position Tank - Max Lvl Cards”
I hope you find this insight useful and it helps you to win more battles in this ruleset in the future. What are your favorite choices for Back to Basics? Let me know in the comments!
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