Mauve Manticore #27

Discussion in 'Adventure Discussion and Strategy' started by Pawndawan, Apr 24, 2018.

  1. Pawndawan

    Pawndawan Champion of Cardhuntria

    Thread for MM #27 praises / curses and advice. :)

    Battle 1: Stupid Geomancer by @DipperPynes
    As with Dipper's previous entry from MM #26, A Little Big Step, this requires some move card counting as well. Clever design, though RNG can be a bit unfair some times. Good thing, this is first scenario of the issue.

    Battle 2: Doggy to the Rescue by @Prennick
    I liked the setup and the detailed board. Servants ended Team Shifting doors, which was a bit strange. Waiting for Nimble Strike and then watching it getting immediately discarded by Cowardly was somewhat anticlimatic. Nevertheless, a solid scenario, would play again!

    Battle 3: Batford's Nightmare
    by @Kalin
    Nice concept! At first, the monsters seemed quite random, but that banana-n-bacon pudding (Oink & Yellow Pudding) explained it all! I should definitely avoid that. Beautiful board was the icing on the pudding... er cake.
    ParodyKnaveBob, esthkol, CT5 and 3 others like this.
  2. I'm always thrilled to see new MMs but this one rather frustrated than excited me. Or to be more precise, the first Battle seemed impossible to me at first.

    For Battle 2 I needed three attempts just because I was rushing in on the dog too fast.
    For Battle 3 I managed to kill them all on first try.
    But both are great after all and I love how well they were designed (mostly from a strategic point of view, but the board design is nice, too).

    But although I did the first one (finally) I don't have a real strategy that deserves this term. With a good (or let's say perfect) first draw, I managed to kill the acid thing with round 1 with full HP for the geomancer and letting Gary take one star. But the other two and the board structure made it impossible for me to actually kill them all. My final attempt ended with me having killed the acid thing (first) and the idol, sitting on a VP and passing until the Fire thing got killed by its own Brain Burn (which took about 70 rounds, 3.5 times circled through its deck). Approaching the fire thing with already reduced HP was never successful for me (the direct damage output of the geomancer is ridiculous and terrain can only have one attachment at a time, so no damage stacking, etc).

    So in case you struggle the same problems then go ahead and use this as a guide (if you don't mind clicking "End Round" quite some time). And to be clear: Ending rounds early until you have a good draw like in A Little Big Step isn't a problem for me, but waiting for a bad draw for my opponent isn't funny after all.

    Therefore, I would be happy if someone can give me a better strategy (or let's say any strategy at all) for my next attempt. If my way of solving it is indeed the intended, I have to say that I don't like the battle.
    ParodyKnaveBob, CT5, Prennick and 2 others like this.
  3. Maniafig

    Maniafig Thaumaturge

    Glad to see another MM, I hope next AA can bring one again too!

    I like the first battle conceptually, but in practice I think there's too much RNG that can screw you over. The turn limit is tight, you don't have much HP and it's difficult to dodge in and out of an engagement when it's down to you and a single enemy with Gary at one victory star until he wins, which is what it usually comes down to.

    My usual strategy is to reset until I get a turn 1 Lava Pool to drop under the Acid Imp and then try to kill the Fire Sprite before Gary can accumulate 5 victory stars. By that time I'd wait until I had a 3-duration Hover and enough Walks to make it to the Lava Statue and hope I can kill it before it kills me. Its Flame Jet is what really irks me, since it has 5 range so you can't avoid it when you stand on the victory square, and its Fireproof Charm and Heat Treatment can make it last long enough to draw it and kill you. This is really annoying when you've already spent many turns getting to that point.

    Turns out the solution is to cheese things! Resetting until you draw Lava Pool doesn't change, but rather than go for the Fire Sprite I decided to go for the Statue first instead. If you stand below the victory square, you can lure it away from its victory square and Telekinesis it away from its victory square! This gives you a lot more breathing room since it'll likely never get to the center victory square on your side, so it just becomes a race to see who can kill the other first. Once the Statue is down, you can just stall on the victory square until the Fire Sprite Brain Burns itself to death. Many thanks to @PhoenixTheHunter for that idea, it's tedious but it works!

    So yeah, I get the feeling that playing the intended way here is more frustrating than doing things the cheesy but tedious way. As it stands, going for the Fire Sprite last is counter-intuitive, but more effective since you don't need to engage it to kill it.

    I've already talked about the second battle in its thread on the map submission subforum, and I still like it. The flavour text is simple, but it's nice and it fits. The map looks good, I especially like the crumbled passageways. The implementation of the Phylacteries is very creative here! It's also not too difficult of a map once you figure out what to do, the hardest part is managing your dodges against Scar, but once he's down you have all the time you need to accumulate Jump Back/Skillful Dodges before engaging with Stafford. Of note is my first attempt in which a Roach almost destroyed one of my vases, much to my own embarrassment! My Guard dog simply didn't draw enough attack cards early on!

    I really want to commend the third battle for totally nailing the nightmare theme it is going for. The visuals are jumbled, nonsensical and distorted just like nightmares tend to be, Batford's inability to call for reinforcements though Ring the Alarm is very fitting for a nightmare, and the monster selection is humorously explained by the flavour text. As for the gameplay itself, the Psi Cat is absolutely the biggest threat and should be dealt with ASAP. In a lucky run it's the first to run up to the Door and quickly killed, the other enemies can only engage in melee. Once enemies do break into the room, Scamper becomes invaluable for getting past them into the main hall, which gives a lot more breathing room to avoid and kite enemies. Just be careful not to get cornered! I like how my battle ended with Batford ducking from a slime and spontaneously growing a slimy tentacle which he used to kill a pig. Yeah, I can see why he woke up when that happened. :p

    And of course the rewards are well worth the effort! Two AA winners for the price of one!
    ParodyKnaveBob, CT5, Temaukel and 2 others like this.
  4. Happenstance

    Happenstance Thaumaturge

    I always commend the effort of people who want to entertain me for free, so congrats to all the submitters for their work.

    That said, the first two maps were very draw dependent, and I reckon it's a weak design principle for MMs. They're not hard, they just require you to have the right cards or lose, and hanging around 25+ turns to draw nimble strike twice in the second map was a chore. The third map was a ripper, albeit a little easy - I lost my door at the start of the second round due to poison and still won comfortably. My two cents for designers is to look back at some of the huge set piece battles of earlier MMs for inspiration - these still include puzzle elements but offer multiple paths to victory, and require you to think hard about which of your minions to sacrifice first in securing victory.

    I can see that I'm going to spend a day grinding the MMs again to pick out my favourite levels in the near future.
  5. Scarponi

    Scarponi Moderator

    First Map: Don't forget to abuse the AI, it won't leave a victory point if you're on one, but if you're not, sometimes you can get it to move off it's vp. If you have more movement and it does not.... you can steal a point.
  6. Temaukel

    Temaukel War Monkey

    I think first map was too funny. I like those draw dependant ones, so frustrating and time consuming. I did it second time I tried, but then I had to do some LF and... well, I think I needed six or seven tries until I got the right cards. Gosh... (Oh, funny "Aftermath" text).

    Second one I don't think it was too much draw dependant. Just need to think your moves beforehand and...
    don't kill the master's jars
    I love this kind of maps.

    The third one was a bit easy, you have to know the enemies. I liked it, even if I still can't get what was that mass breaking into the map floor (I'd welcome an explanation about it, even if it made me think about that old moovie about some sort of geological source living-beings-eater yogurt). Did it on second try...
    coz suicidal tendencies (see map 3 spoiler)

    ¬°Thanks everyone working to do it! I hope i could send my own soon.

    How did I do it (note that these are not the actual map titles):

    Need Lava pool on first round, that's the way to get rid of the Acid Sprite. Cave in and lava could work, specially if you get it with Paralyzing Bolt. Acid pool plus Everlasting ground should work also. For the second one I choose the Magma Idol. Lava Pool again, except if it has immunity, wich you can lose a precious turn trying to find out, but you can use Acid Pool to get rid of it... Can try to TK it out of his 2 squares, but it resulted to be just painful to me. And for the last one, well, save all your moves on a vp until you can reach him. Preferably full health. Then go and deal with it. Good luck on your draws!

    You need to kill the cockreache first beeing it the only enemy that can kill your jars. Or try to avoid it until you can. Then just reach the main hall through the tunnel and get rid of the other dog's door, saving at least one Nimble Strike on it (to surpass the jars). Now there will be two dogs against the servants, then the lord and his pets.

    You may need to help that jaguar break the door, otherwhise just save the daggers to land on it. I strongly recommend to save two Moves/Ducks/Rise Alarms, specially on low health, to avoid Ouch! killing you. Scamper is a good card to save in order to get out of danger, then you can dance around the stuff to get rid from distance of the rest of them. I would not recommend to stay trapped on the bedroom.
    ParodyKnaveBob likes this.
  7. Kalin

    Kalin Begat G'zok

    A few thoughts from me:
    1. In addition to advice above, this is also a good map to use clrt-right-click to determine where you can stand to safely burst the enemies. And it may be the only map in the game where Everlasting Ground actually does something.

    2. This was the hardest for me, I kept dying at the end. I will mention that you don't need Nimble Strike to get past the jars, Scamper works fine once the door is gone.

    While making that map I waffled a bit between nightmarish chaos versus actually being able to tell what type of tile you're standing on. The thing breaking through is the giant skull I also used here:
  8. Temaukel

    Temaukel War Monkey

    Wow, I guess I didn't draw Scamper once... :O Could that be possible or I just ignored it? Of course it works.
  9. Scarponi

    Scarponi Moderator

    Umm... The Jars are allies. Once the doors are gone any move works, you can always walk through an ally's square as long as an enemy's zone of control doesn't block it.
    Last edited: Apr 26, 2018
  10. CT5

    CT5 Guild Leader

    Thank you DipperPynes, Prennick, and Kalin!

    Sir Veza and Pawndawan like this.
  11. Temaukel

    Temaukel War Monkey

    You didn't like my hints? :p

    BTW, on the last map, some people (I'm talking about you, nerdsholmferret) suggested waiting for the fire sprite to kill himself with Brain Burn. Clever...
    Last edited: Apr 26, 2018
  12. Pawndawan

    Pawndawan Champion of Cardhuntria

  13. I finally have a strategy (*) for the first map that only requires you to circle your OWN deck ONCE. But let me first thank @Scarponi for providing a hint, that wasn't successful for me at all but without that hint I wouldn't have tried it once again.

    (*) you may choose another term if this isn't one for you, but it's my best attempt for one at the moment

    - Kill two of the three enemies
    - End on a VP (out of range for the final enemy)
    - Have enough HP to survive all attacks that the final enemy could cast on you in ONE round (you don't have to survive burning or terrain damage or the like, see later)
    - if your last enemy is the idol you need luck that it doesn't draw Maze (hence, select another enemy as your last to be save)
    - Gary shouldn't have more than 3 stars at this point (the fewer the easier for the glorious finale).

    All this is easily doable but may require some re-starts. I did it in my fifths try with Gary having scored 3 point until then (at start of round 4) and at full health (lucky me, lava pool (for the idol) and two Hot Spots (for the acid guy) on first round and I (more or less) only had to wait for them to burn to death). My last enemy was the upper-left fire sprite and I stood on the middle VP.

    Without already having the following strategy in mind I kept Paralyzing Bolt after round 3 for no good reason and I also kept a Walk after round 4 and got two more Walks in round five (one was the default move). With three Walks i rushed from the middle VP to the upper-left one, paralyzed the sprite (and moved it away from it's VP), suffered some fire damage and won the map in round 5 by scoring a star without killing the last enemy.

    Less personal game experience, more strategy:
    - pass and keep Paralyzing Bolt and a Walk
    - if you don't have the Bolt in hand, pass (standing on the VP) until your deck circled to this particular card (this may take some rounds but not 70 like in the so-called strategy from my last post)
    - at the start of the next round you have at least two Walks and the Bolt
    - if you're lucky to have three Walks, rush over to the VP next to the final enemy
    - if you only got the default movement (that's where the Gary-precondition is important) and Gary cannot win this round, use one or two moves (personal preference) to move closer to the VP next to the last enemy, pass with the Bolt (and in case you only used one, the other Walk) in hand, get another default movement and move to the VP next round
    - if Gary is at four stars already, pass and keep a Walk and the Bolt and wait for a round with an extra movement (@Pawndawan has shown, that this shouldn't take too long ;) ) and move from your VP to the VP next to the enemy within one round to not grant Gary another star
    - get hit by the enemy
    - paralyze the enemy and slide it off the VP (he will loose all movement cards and won't be able to reach the VP any more)
    - get hit by the enemy again (and again and again ... until Gary finally passes)
    - pass and win
    ParodyKnaveBob likes this.
  14. ParodyKnaveBob

    ParodyKnaveBob Thaumaturge

    I liked 'em all. $:^ J

    I guess my geomancer drew nice cards? Beat it first try pretty simply. Went for the middle enemy first since I had Lava cards and knew the Idol could be Immune. Didn't care about VSs at this point since they'd overpower me there anyway. Went for the leftmost enemy next. Everlasting Ground kept all my Terrain cookin'. Then, (keeping Paralyzing Bolt which I might've picked up before the second enemy? can't recall now,) I slowly made my way back to the rightmost enemy, always ending on a VS (and saving Walks if need be) -- even picking up one VP from the silly Idol Shuffling off once, heh. All the way to the right, it Mazed me (I forgot it had that card!!) right up to it at range 2 -- and although I'd Paralyzed it and had drawn Telekinesis, I didn't realize where it had Mazed me blocked me from TKing it over to my side. Bah. Oh well. Killed it pretty quickly anyway plus maybe another VS VP.

    The dogs were hilarious! Beautiful characters. $:^ ] Little dog going through so much trouble to release big dog, and ohhh boy once that big dog is released. $E^ D Had some hilarious defeats... First time, I quickly killed a Phylactery so that I could Nimble Strike over the Reinforced Door asap. Defeat! Lol, whoops, what was I thinking. $:^ P Second time, I got on past the Cockroach and Servant pretty quickly, but that poor little dog draws so few attacks overall, I literally couldn't break down the door before the roach caught up with me some 3-4 rounds later, ha ha ha. Third time, said nope, kill the roach first, which was easy enough. Then, right around the time I was about to kill the door, the Servants used Team Shift again, and for the first during this MM, the door Shifted out of the way. Ha. I agree with Pawn that saving up a Nimble Strike or two only to get Cowardly is painful, but oh well. In the end, my War Dog did a number on Scar but escaped from Stafford quite wounded, only to tag team my little dog to Nimble over the ropes and draw out all of the lord's Attacks (plus bite him a good time or two) -- then let the big dog come in for the finish. They deserved their nice treats. Also, I found it lovely to see some unofficial world-building for the evil lords of the land plundering others' estates to illicitly build their ill-gotten treasuries. The baron's a nice rich guy; the lords are supposed rich guys whose loot needs "liberating" ('cause it's clearly not theirs to begin with!).

    The nightmare was pretty nice. The abstract, Tim Burton-esque, American McGee-esque look to the floorboard reality breaking up for the otherworldy terror beneath? Ha ha ha. I killed the cat before it could bust down the door, and same with the pudding, but the pig I had to dance around a little. Never even needed to leave my bedroom sanctuary, though. Simple little pig. And yes, I loved the bad-dream concept of drawing Raise The Alarm and having no alarm to raise! $:^ }

    Two sweet items, too! One I wish I'd had for a party I was playing some weeks ago; the other I soon inserted into my current PvP battlers. $;^ J
    Pawndawan, Sir Veza and Maniafig like this.
  15. chicken159

    chicken159 Kobold

    I love the Mauve Manticore levels, though some do get on my nerves. The geomancer was a great design and use of the terrain cards. The second one however, the "Doggy to the Rescue" kinda p'd me off. It took me so long to see that I could actually attack the doors without losing, unlike the Phylacteries, and get the more damaging War Dog through to attack Scar. I kept trying to use the Guard Dog to do all the work, not thinking about the Nimble strike jumping over the Phylacteries. Like all of the Mauve Manticore levels, the most annoying part about them is figuring out the gimmick, and waiting for Gary to play though every. Single. Move card. Whether he was going to actually move his pieces or not. I ended up ignoring Scar and just charging into Stafford to just gain the win through sheer force of will... not my smartest move.

    The nightmare was enjoyable, though felt really easy. I loved the head breaking through the floor, though at first it freaked me out, and the joke of raising the alarm and no one coming to his aid was well thought out. This felt like a nightmare that I would have on a normal basis if I lived in this world. XD
    Sir Veza likes this.

Share This Page