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Elements Community Newsletter: February 2017 http://elementscommunity.org/forum/index.php?topic=64106.msg1256690#msg1256690
« on: February 06, 2017, 10:49:39 PM »
Spoiler for February 2017:
Febuary 2017
13th Council has been Hired!
Brawl has begun!

  • RootRanger has done it again! He has added to his lengthy list of PvP Event wins with a powerful display in Double Double Double Double. So strong was his performance in fact, that the winner's bracket final was a titanic clash between RootRanger and... RootRanger! We all thought we were seeing double. Eventually, he faced mathman101 in the Grand Showdown to claim his win!

  • Trinity by TheonlyrealBeef is well under way with Afdarenty taking the lead going into Round 5. Players try to balance picking popular elements with having fewer upgrades in a swiss style tournament. So far, Fire has been the most popular in every round. Obviously people like having access to Fire Spirits or something.

  • And don't forget, if you think you can run an event, or have a great idea for one you'd like someone else to run for you, check out the 'Post Your PvP Event Ideas Here' thread!
  • BRAWL is well underway, the teams working hard on Round 3! In this fantasy edition of the most creative event on the forums, the teams do battle to wrestle The City of Gold, Aurdinas away from a Dragon, and each other! So far they have concocted secret plans, shown us what travelling across their countries looks like, and have finally arrived at Aurdinas... what lies ahead, only the Brawlmasters know!

  • Brawl needs you! A vital part of this competition is voting for the best submissions! You get to feel a grand sense of power as you cast your votes and assess people's hard work. Be honest. Be brutal. Be there to vote for Round 2 now!

  • The rest of the Competition Section is in hibernation while Brawl is ongoing to focus the creative juices of the forum... But you can sign up to one or more of the Competition Mailing Lists for a useful notification when a Competition you might be interested in is posted, whether your interests lie in Card Design, Deck-Building, Art or Writing!

  • Lazy deck-builders start with partially built decks. In January 3rd's Opposing Skeletons, players had to finish building half-crafted duo decks. Mr Muffin put meat on the skeleton bones and buried the opposition!

  • You know what sucks about this game? Obviously there are too many cards. In January 14th's Slim Pickings 6x6 Tournament, only 6 cards from 6 elements were allowed, forcing hopefuls to closely analyse a heavily restricted meta. Or, in TheonlyrealBeef's case, just "make 2 brutally consistent decks" (Acsabi44).

  • What's even lazier than partially pre-built decks? Building just 1 deck for the whole tournament! The Lazy Man's Tournament on January 21st forced players to field just one deck per match. Winner, kaempfer13, took it even further, building just one deck for the whole tournament!

  • After a month of heavy restrictions, the Tournament Organizers stripped it all back and hosted one of the least restricted tournaments ever! The only rule was that you couldn't field the same element more than once in a match. TheonlyrealBeef found a route through the meta in January 28th's Shifting Balance, and came out on top!

  • Sign-ups are still ongoing in the next mafia adventure: Elements Mafia 67 - by fabian771. Grab your silver bullets and your deductive reasoning skills and start hunting down some werewolves in this moonlit mafia!

  • The Humans are still yet to find the possessed in Eldritch - By Kuroaitou! Only five players remain in the game, but will they stop the cultists and end the possession before it's too late?

  • The first round of Quantafied 3 - by Linkcat has already passed, with UTAlan and Kuroaitou dying very early deaths. Can the rest of the players balance their quanta, or will the wild, destructive actions of their enemies send them to their doom?

  • The first season of 2017 Leagues has begun! Make sure you join up for fun, interaction with the community and, if you are ruthless and skillful enough, shiny rewards!
  • Only a few games have been played so far, but worldwideweb3 has taken an early lead in Championship League, and Battle League too! It seems he's hoping to repeat his double first place of last season!
  • Shards are no longer banned! Of course, you can still agree on banning them with your opponent, but can play in a fresh, sharded meta for the first time in several seasons!

  • The 13th Elements Council has just been hired! We all wish the following members the best of luck with improving and maintaining our wonderful forum!



Tea Time with UTAlan
Below is the portion of an interview:
For how long are you going to stay in our lovely community (I hope for a long time :P)? (ARTHANASIOS)

I have no intentions of leaving. Obviously I don't know what the future holds, but I hope to stick around for a long time!

Favorite hobby? (Anonymous)

If programming doesn't count (since I do that for a living), it'd have to be Ultimate Frisbee. Also, if I had to guess I would say that Anonymous in this case is Joey...

What does your name mean? (ARTHANASIOS)

This one is easy :D

Find this answer and more in UTAlan's official interview

New Members
Spoiler for Introduction posts:
Here are the members who posted in the Introduce Yourself board (but not later than in 2 months prior to Newsletter). Just click a certain name to be redirected to corresponding introduction post. Don't be rude, say hello to new comers ;)



TUNE OF THE MONTH!

This month, JonathanCrazyJ introduces us to the four vicious Brawl Teams battling it out to claim Aurdinas, the City of Gold! Who are you rooting for? S7, F.R.O.G.S, Pyrocloaks or The Tentacle's Grip?






Deck Idea of the Month
SoP Devtal by Team Water

This deck review was written by Afdarenty
Hover over cards for details, click for permalink
Deck import code : [Select]
5jm 5jm 5jm 5jm 5jm 5jm 5jm 5jm 5um 5um 5um 5um 5um 5um 622 622 622 622 7hi 7hi 7hi 7hi 7um 7um 7um 7um 7um 7um 7um 7um 8pu

The most exquisite deck of War #10! Quanta lock your opponents, before dealing massive damage late game with Shard of Patience!

Card by card:

Mark of Aether: Your deck becomes a lot more threatening after the first Fractal. Mark of Aether ensures you have a good supply of Aether Quanta in the early game.

Devourer: The key to the deck. Each one of these will take 1 Quanta away from your opponent and give you 1 Darkness Quanta.

Fractal: What's the problem with Devourer? You can only play 6. With Fractal, you can reliably play 8+ Devourers in the first 6 turns.

Shard of Patience: Your win condition. Devtal aims to play a lot of creatures quickly - Shard of Patience takes advantage of this by giving each one two attack each turn. This can easily end up adding 20 damage a turn. Also buffs your Devourers out of Area of Effect range.

Water/Dark Pendulums: These are the most reliable way to generate the three different kinds of Quanta you'll need. Upgrading the Darkness Pendulums can be quite important - even if you only draw one upgraded Pendulum, you can still play a Devourer on turn 2.


Strategy:
A new twist on a classic deck - Devtal has been popular in both PVP and for AI grinding for some time, but this deck trades in the typical Vampires for some Water Pendulums and Shards of Patience.

In the early game you want to play your Devourers out and build up quanta for your Fractal. Play Shard of Patience as soon as you can - you want to clear your hand out so you get more cards from Fractal, and the extra damage is always nice. When you can, Fractal your Devourers and drain all the quanta from your opponent - this will prevent them from playing cards for the rest of the match. Typically, you won't want to cancel your Shard of Patience until you have enough damage to kill your opponent in three turns.

Sometimes, against decks that can kill your Devourers easily, you might want to keep one Devourer in your hand to ensure you have a good target for your Fractal turn. Practice really helps with judging this.


Strengths:
SoP Devtal is almost impossible to compete with in the late - you just have to get there. This deck punishes 1 Pillar draws particularly hard - your Devourers will have a very easy time draining your opponents quanta with such a slow start. Some of the stronger match ups are outlined below.

Other Fractal Decks
There are many powerful decks (Fractix, Frogtal, Guardtal) that use Fractal on a cheap creature with high damage. Because Fractal is one of the most expensive cards in the game, your denial can stop them from ever playing it and counter their entire deck.

Poison Decks
These typically win in around 10-12 turns, and stall out the game with either Bonewalls, Creature Control, Sundials, etc. 10-12 turns is far too slow against this deck - not only is your denial slowing their win condition in the early game, but you completely prevent their stall cards from working too.

Dimensional Shields
This deck is an excellent counter to one of the most hated cards in Elements. Decks playing Dimensional Shields typically use damage sources that are slow but difficult to counter, such as Phase Dragons, Fractal, or Parallel Universe plus Dragons. They can afford to do this because their Shields give them a ton of protection.

Because their damage is so slow, and they don't play anything in the early game, they're a perfect match up for Devtal. You have plenty of time to set up a board full of Devourers, and when it's time for you to start attacking with your Devourers they won't have any quanta to play their Shields.

Any Slow Deck
There are a lot of different decks that fit under this category. Just a few examples: Shard of Wisdom/Reflect, Adrenastaves, Catatitans, Mono Light, Drainbolt... The list goes on. Devtal is almost always a counter to these decks - they rarely play anything at the start of the game and by the mid game they're already locked down. Even stall decks with Sanctuary can be defeated - sure, you'll be slow to generate Darkness Quanta, but Fractal and Shard of Patience will be enough to bring them down in the end.


Weaknesses:
Generally, if a deck beats you it's because they managed to play a bunch of stuff in the early game, or somehow disrupted your Fractal. Some of the more difficult match ups for SoP Devtal are below.

Other Denial Decks
To get your denial active, you need to use a Fractal. As stated above, Fractal is one of the most expensive cards in the game - in denial mirrors it can be extremely difficult to actually play it. Because of that, they'll often do a better job of disrupting you in the early game than you do to them, and as this deck relies on a fast lock down that's often all it will take for you to lose. It's worth noting, however, that classic Devtal tends to lose to SoP Devtal hard-to-head, because the latter can achieve a faster fractal with fewer cards cluttering their hand!

Nightmare
Nightmare will fill your hand with copies of a useless card. This stops you from getting a bunch of Devourers with Fractal, which means you'll have a much harder time draining your opponent of quanta.

Rush Decks
Rush decks aim to deal as much damage as quickly as possible. They're built to be efficient in the early game - playing a creature two turns earlier is more important to them than having cards to play in the mid to late game. To ensure Rush decks play their creatures quickly they tend to run either cheap creatures, such as Giant Frogs or Flesh Recluse, or many pillars for relatively cheap cards, such as 14 in a Mono Gravity rush whose most expensive creature is a Charger.

In the early game, when your denial is relatively weak, it can be difficult to prevent an opponent from playing very cheap cards such as the Frog, or to completely lock down a large amount of pillars. Because of this, Rush decks will often get enough creatures played in the early game to chip you down before you can kill them.

Immolation/Nova decks
These are your worst match up. Not only are these often cards you see in Rush decks, but they mean that even after you play a bunch of Devourers your opponent can still play their cards. You'll need a very fast draw to stand a chance, here.


Conclusion:
So, should you use this Shard of Patience version of Devtal instead of your classic Vampire build? The answer is yes, absolutely - but only some of the time. Each version of Devtal has a few key advantages over the other.

Shard of Patience helps you beat a lot of traditional counters to Devtal, such as Sanctuary deck-out stalls and decks playing a lot of Area of Effect cards. However, the classic Devtal boasts a ton of healing in the late game, which helps your chances to beat faster decks significantly. Playing a good mix of both will keep your opponents guessing, and give them a hard time beating you!



This Card review was written by Hyroen


Art by: EmeraldTiger.

:life Life as an element is one of creature spam, healing and sustain. While not being a weak element at all, it can sometimes struggle to respond to certain characteristic cards across Elements the Game and as such, at times, can fall short in terms of versatility and unpredictability. Every element deserves to have not just balanced cards, but cards that can control the metagame. In earlier patches, War has demonstrated the power of key cards such as Graboid, Dimensional Shield & Sanctuary. While it can be argued that most elements have at least one of such cards, :life Life struggles to find one, particularly one that is versatile and that you can easily build decks around, as opposed to simply being used as a deck filler. In Rutarete's card :life Symbiosis | Symbiosis, we may find such a card within :life Life. A wonderfully thematic card, :life Symbiosis is a spell that sets the user's HP to the total HP of either owned creatures or all creatures on the field in the case of the upgrade, being an effective spell for an effective end-game price.


Sustain

:life Life as an element loves its healing cards, such as Druidic Staff, Heal and Empathic Bond, however its inability to expand on its Max HP hinders the effectiveness of such cards. With the large amount of creature slots and 6 copies of Empathic Bond, the astronomical healing potential of the element falls quite short with the default 100HP limit. :life Symbiosis | Symbiosis changes everything, as long as the amount of HP on the field is prominent. As such, cards like Voodoo Doll, Armagio & : Forest Spirit take on a whole new dimension with the inclusion of :life Symbiosis | Symbiosis and through it, can breathe new life into the element.


Here is a deck designed by Hyroen that shows an effective way to use :life Symbiosis | Symbiosis!

Deck 1:
Hover over cards for details, click for permalink
Deck import code : [Select]
4t9 4t9 4t9 4t9 4t9 4t9 7ac 7ac 7ac 7ac 7ac 7ac 7ac 7ac 7ah 7ah 7ah 7ah 7ah 7aj 7aj 7am 7am 7am 7ap 7ap 7bu 7bu 7bu 7bu 7bu 7bu 7bu 7bu 7bu 8pp

(Relics represent :life Symbiosis)

Forest Spirit can sometimes be an awkward addition to the element of :life Life, mainly due to being such a fragile creature, and as such, it seldom can take off and do what it sets out to do. Capitalizing on its ability to grow, this deck focuses on not only finding an opening to use :water Grow but also to be able to use Mitosis to show how resilient :life Life, in general, can be. Not only being a ramping beast, this deck sets out to use :water to not only provide the offensive aspect of the Forest Spectres but also to be able to redefine what a Max HP can truly mean. Spine Carapaces further complement the deck by whittling attackers away. As such, the deck sets out to not only ramp the damage quite rapidly, but also to be able to sustain and stall out the pesky obstacles that :life Life tends to struggle with.



:life Life is classically seen as the element of healing, creatures, and often, growth. :life Symbiosis | Symbiosis allows the element to capitalize on all of these components in a way that demonstrates a more majestic and stalwart side of :life Life, and in doing so, could potentially add a card that at the very least could be a thorn in the sides of many and the boon :life Life has, for so long, waited.

To see more of Rutarete's work check his portfolio HERE.

Until next time!


Spoiler for Photocredit:


Many thanks to:
-mathman101 for Tournaments section and Forum Games section.
-Afdarenty for DiotM.
-Hyroen for CiotM.
-UTAlan for the interview.
-all readers for reading ;)

« Last Edit: February 07, 2017, 12:16:07 AM by Zyardran »
Grav. Sold. War #11
In fond memory of ZephyrPhantom
Avatar courtesy of Krzysiekxd

Offline UTAlan

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Re: Elements Community Newsletter: February 2017 http://elementscommunity.org/forum/index.php?topic=64106.msg1256692#msg1256692
« Reply #1 on: February 06, 2017, 10:51:49 PM »
Great job!
« Last Edit: February 07, 2017, 01:22:36 AM by UTAlan »

Offline JonathanCrazyJ

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Re: Elements Community Newsletter: February 2017 http://elementscommunity.org/forum/index.php?topic=64106.msg1256693#msg1256693
« Reply #2 on: February 06, 2017, 10:55:19 PM »
The NL team would like to apologize for the late newsletter. It has been an extremely busy month for all 3 of us, and we decided we would rather release a (hopefully) quality product than something rushed to time.
We will endeavor to release on time in future.
Enjoy the NL!
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Offline Solaris

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Re: Elements Community Newsletter: February 2017 http://elementscommunity.org/forum/index.php?topic=64106.msg1256721#msg1256721
« Reply #3 on: February 07, 2017, 04:15:05 AM »
staff changes missed me resigning from TO....

Nice newsletter. Prefer it to be late but good than ontime but subpar. Optimal is good and ontime, though ;)

Offline JonathanCrazyJ

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Re: Elements Community Newsletter: February 2017 http://elementscommunity.org/forum/index.php?topic=64106.msg1256757#msg1256757
« Reply #4 on: February 07, 2017, 05:23:36 PM »
staff changes missed me resigning from TO....

as a default, staff resignations aren't mentioned in the NL, but can be upon request :)
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