Splinterlands Enhancements III: Hybrids

This one is going to be a bit more controversial as, if it isn’t implemented correctly, it could seriously affect the balance of play. On the other hand, it will offer many new opportunities for strategy, making money and adding value to Splinterlands as a whole. In particular, this will be a major card sink while creating cool new monsters and summoners.

The basic concept here is that not only can you merge the cards of identical monsters & summoners, but you can also merge the cards of different monsters & summoners (except legendary promotional summoners) to create new hybrid monstrosities. However, in order to maintain flavor and balance (with the convenient excuse of compatibility issues), only monsters & summoners of the same splinter may be combined. And, of course, summoners may only be merged with summoners and monsters may only be merged with monsters. Neutral monsters may be merged other neutral monsters. Optionally, neutral monsters could be merged with monsters from any other splinter to create Dragon splinter hybrids (although some abilities may be disallowed if they interfere too much with game balance). Hybrids will increase the number of monsters & summoners and serve as another card sink, thus adding to the value of individual cards (particularly of older sets).

Feral Spirit + Luminous Eagle --> Royal Griffin

Both components (monsters or summoners) must be Gold Foil in order for the hybrid to be Gold Foil. Mixing sets is permissible but the hybrid will be treated as being from the least advantageous set in all cases.

Components of different levels can be merged. The level of the hybrid is equal to the lower of the two components. The same holds true anytime the number of cards of either component would lead to a different level.

Components with different frequencies can be merged. In all cases, the number of cards required of the more common component is adjusted by dividing it by the difference in frequency + 1, always rounding the number of cards up. Thus, if the components have the same frequency, the number of cards required for each is 1 / (frequency difference + 2) = ½ the normal number. If the components don’t have the same frequency, the rarer component requires the normal number of cards since 1 / (0 + 1) = 1 while the more common component requires only one-half to one-quarter the normal number.

All hybrids composed of components with different frequencies with have 10 levels and advance based upon the number of cards shown in the chart below (modified, of course, by the rule above).

CommonRareEpicAlpha LegendaryNon-Alpha Legendary
level 1 normallevel 1 normallevel 1 normal11
level 2 normallevel 2 normalaverage 1 & 222
level 3 normalaverage 2 & 3level 2 normal33
level 4 normallevel 3 normalaverage 2 & 344
level 5 normallevel 4 normallevel 3 normal55
level 6 normallevel 5 normallevel 4 normal66
level 7 normalaverage 5 & 6average 4 & 577
level 8 normallevel normallevel 5 normal89
level 9 normallevel normalaverage 5 & 6911
level 10 normallevel normallevel 6 normal1012

For monsters, the mana cost, speed, armor and health will be the average of the two – as will attack strength if they have the same attack type. If the monsters have different attack types, the hybrid will get the full-strength attack of one of them. Rounding is determined randomly but the quantities of instances of up versus down will differ by no more than one.

Abilities are gained when components are first merged and whenever they level up. At each level, hybrids will have a number of abilities equal to the average of the constituents rounded down. If both constituents have an abilities at first level, their hybrid will only have one of them. The particular abilities that are gained are always randomly chosen from the remaining abilities of the two constituents subject to the level restrictions shown in the chart below. Thus, a hybrid will never get an ability before the respective component gets it (unless, of course, the other component gets it at a lower level). Abilities possessed by both components but not the hybrid have two times the normal chance of appearing. Alternatively, the ability could be guaranteed to appear at the level at which both components have it (even if it temporarily violates the ability number limit).

CommonRareEpicLegendary
1110
2211
Bronze3221
4322
Silver5432
6543
7543
Gold8653
9754
Diamond10864

Some abilities could be combined by the developers to create hybrid abilities like Thorny Protection which provides +1 armor and does 1 damage back to the attacker. At the appropriate given levels, monster could receive either base ability or the hybrid ability. Similarly, if both constituents have the same ability, receiving it twice could lead to a mildly improved ability like Improved Protection whih provides +3 armor or Spiky Thorns which do 3 damage back to the attacker.

Names could be something like MonsterA/MonsterB Hybrid or the player could be allowed to choose them. Pictures could be a split screen or this could be an awesome opportunity for artists to sell their work, thus allowing for a new marketplace, a bigger economy and another way for skilled newcomers to make more money.

And, of course, a new match rule could be added for No Hybrids.

Medusa + Saber Shark --> Delicious Mermaid

So, what do you all think? These are just my initial thoughts and I’m sure that they could be improved upon. PLEASE comment below whether you like this idea or not and any changes/improvements you can come up with.

Stay tuned for my next post suggesting "Improvements for Lower-Level Players". It would also be helpful if people could suggest other Splinterlands enhancements so I can add them to the list that I'll write about (or implement if the team will allow me). Until then may you always hit, retaliate and poison when you need to – and may your opponent not be so lucky.

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