Splinterlands Saturday - Strategy Session

in #splinterlands8 months ago

Splinterlands Saturday - Strategy Session

Splinterlands is a multi-faceted game. There is the decentralized crypto asset portion to the game which probably got most of the original group of players involved. There is the collectible and marketplace aspect which draws all sorts of people from all around the world to the game. Most importantly, there is the game play aspect which gives the game its appeal and value to me. Strategy games have been a part of human culture from the very beginning and in this digitally connected world we live in they will continue to evolve right along side of us into our future. Splinterlands is a strong example of how the blockchain can radically change how online games are valued and used.

Splinterlands is similar to Chess in that each piece has a a unique or common abiliy (move) it can perform. Unlike Chess, in Splinterlands the turns are determined by speed which is an attribute each specific card will have. It is like a baseball pitch in that each battle means you're pitching a hand at your opponent, not knowing but guessing as to what they'll choose to attack and defend vs your hand while simulteaneously trying to figure out how to hit the pitch they're going to throw.

Variables include a long list of rules which often make your most valuable cards unavailable or to expensive to use in many circumstances. That's a big reason to build a balanced deck that has strong Common and Rare cards rather than only focus on the more expensive Epic and Legendary cards.

Each hand you play has fluctuating rules which change the value and usability of the cards you have to choose from. Each opponent has a unique deck to choose the hand you'll be battling too. Do you strictly play the rules and choose your best hand based on that? Or do you sneak a peak at your opponent's past 5 hands and see if you see a pattern you can use to build your offensive and defensive strategy?

I tend to play my best available hand for any given rule set, but I'll occasionally pick my hand based on an opponent I've become familiar with or when I see someone sticking with a particular splinter or style of play. I'm a nerd to the point that I've gone through my cards and done a mathematical analysis based on their offensive & defensive attributes relative to any particular cards mana cost. This gives me a better understanding of which cards will give me the most bang for the mana cost and I use this looking glass to figure out which strategy I want to play.

Here are a few examples of how I've put together some successful rosters and the reasoning behind my choices and strategies...

Battle #1

This game vs @Maiyude has a very large mana cap and Keep Your Distance rules which means no melee cards are available. The first choice is what type of attack to use, it's either Magic or Ranged and I go heavy on the magic side with my Water deck. I rely on Lord Arianthus as my sole defensive player and go heavy on the offensive.


My lead card is Lord Arianthus and this game shows why the card is probably the most used Legendary I see in the game. His defense has no weak spots and his reflect and thorns abilities deal damage back to his attackers. Snipe defense is the next spot to address and I choose the offensive Water Elemental who uses a high speed rating and healing to successfuly handle my opponents snipe and blast attacks while providing a strong ranged attack. Phantom Abyss is next in line as he has even better speed and dodge to avoid enemy attacks than my previous card while providing a 3 magic attack. My rear guard is brought up by the Dwarven Wizard, his armor of some minimal defensive use and I want his magic snipe and stun attacks in this battle. A chance to take out one of your opponenets star cards for a round is a big advantage. The heart of my attack is provided by a gold foil Magi Sphinx and Ruler of the Seas, each having 3 magic attack ratings, a +1 speed advantage for my team, and reducing my opponents magic attack by -1.
Click Link to view the Battle Replay

Battle #2

This battle vs @schachoberhessen has a very low mana cap with Up Close & Personal and No Healing as the rules which means I have a difficult battle to gameplan for. I again go all out offensive and my hand flies like a butterfly / stings like a bee into the win column.


I lead off with the Exploding Dwarf and its blast and pierce attack with a chance to retaliate vs my opponents melee attack. I follow with the Cereberus even though it's healing ability was nullified by the rule set. I clean up the remaining 1 mana I have available with the Creeping Ooze and rely on its -1 speed debuff to get the first strike.
Click Link to view the Battle Replay

Battle #2

This hand vs @Pardinus has a high mana cap with Target Practice and Taking Sides as the rules which mean all Magic and Ranged attackers get the Snipe ability and no neutral cards can be used. I decide to put one of my rented cards to use and use Selena Sky with her +1 Ranged Attack buff to compliment the Death Splinter and it's strong ranged attack cards. This one comes down to the wire and a stun from the Lord of Darkness arrives at just the right time to give me a victory.


With all of the Ranged and Magic attacks being directed at my Snipe position I use Lord of Darkness as my lead off, with a strong attack and good defense vs opposing melee cards he is a good defensive choice while also providing a strong offense. I spam the Cursed Slimeball as my first back line defender and he successfully blocks the initial blast attack from hitting my valuable main defender. My Phantom Soldier has a high health rating, reduces enemy magic attacks, and has the flying ability which makes him harder to hit for the ranged attacks I anticipate coming my way. I take a chance and put the Haunted Spider into my rear guard and hope my opponent doesn't hit that position in this juicy offensive matchup. The big range attacks of Twisted Jester and Vampire make up my main offensive strike with their high speed ratings.
Click Link to view the Battle Replay

Battle #4

This battle vs @coolguy123 has a high mana cap with the Standard rule set, a large palette to put together a hand with. I put some of my most expensive cards to use and fortify the front of my defense while directing my main attack towards the weakest spot in my opponents defense with the Double Tap opportunity attack. This ends up being a very close battle with my hand barely getting the victory.


I lead off with Chain Golem and his strong all around defense and piercing melee attack. Lord Arianthus is next to protect against blast and snipe attacks and provide a secondary line of defense in case my Chain Golem goes down quickly. My rear guard defense goes to the sacrificial Furious Chicken who will also draw an Opportunity attack should one come my way. Enchanted Pixie bolsters my main offense with her +1 melee buff which makes my main attack even stronger. The Serpentine Spy and Dragon Jumper provide a strong double tap attack that hits my opponent just right to nullify his defensive strategy and eat up his offensive players before they can take my team out.
Click Link to view the Battle Replay

Battle #5

This battle vs @eepsy gives me an unlimited mana cap to work with and Earthquake rules which deal out 2 melee damage to each card at the beginning of the round. These uncapped mana games are some of my favorite to put together a team for as I get to use some of the best cards I have available. Daria Dragonscale is my summoner of choice and I end up using 4 Legendary and 2 Epic level cards to beat a tough high level team.


I use Chain Golem again to lead off as I know I'll be under heavy fire, his shield and void abilities both get tested against a strong and diverse attack. Cornelius with his strong ranged attack, high health, and healing ability guard my snipe and blast positions while flyers Lightning Dragon & Dark Enchantress bring their strong stun attacks to the field while Phantom Soldier provides my rear guard and weakens my opponents magic attacks. Dragon Jumper puts his often overloocked Snare ability to use while raining down havoc and destruction into the heart of my opponents defense.
Click Link to view the Battle Replay

I hope you enjoyed this little sneak peak into my Splinterlands strategy.


This is a LOT of great info!
I think maybe your opening 'about Splinterlands' is the best I've seen. I would definitely be interested in playing if I read this.
Thank you so much for taking the time to share this!


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