Hey I?ve been having a lot of success placing top 3 with a certain strategy in the Knight 1-9 region, and sticking to it and trying to apply it every game has won every single game except two all the way out of knight, so I would like to share it here for players like myself who aren?t yet super good at the game.
DISCLAIMER ? This post is a huge, boring, nerdy wall of text. Proceed at your own risk.?Don?t expect this strat to work in lobbies full of skilled players, and although I mention the word ?aggressive? a lot in the playstyle of this build, do not think that aggressive means thoughtless. You do have to put in effort to calculate and be thoughtful about the way you play this build despite it being an aggressive style build involving a lot of spending and *gasp* rerolling. Again, this only carried me through the Knight rank and I have yet to experience how this performs in the Bishop ranks.
So, this is a Synergy strat which utilises 2 Racial bonuses and 4 Class bonuses, I?ll talk much about the line-up of pieces, rerolling, levelling, and formation.
Why has this strategy worked for me? The pieces involved are usually very easy to collect allowing for faster and consistent 3* units that also provide good synergy bonuses as a team. Nobody usually hoards most of these pieces which allows you to snipe them fast and build a very quick momentum of power for your board.
Into the lategame, your powerful units become more about Syngeries and Abilities, providing for a good balance of Tankiness, Auto Attack strength, Life-steal, CC and AOE magic damage.
GENERAL PLAYSTYLE ?
So this build requires you to do something that I know a lot of players don?t like doing, and that is?rerolling pre-50 gold. I have won many many games doing the exact same playstyle which is to give one or two (never more than three) rerolls per round past R5 to collect the early units and upgrade them faster than anyone else.
However, if I find one or two units relevant to the line-up in the first auto-generated roll per round, I will usually not reroll unless I am trying to aggressively upgrade a unit that is close to 2*. I cannot state enough how much power comes from spending 2 gold on finding your relevant pieces early (leading to earlier 2*s and synergy bonuses on your board).
I have found that sacrificing health to accrue interest is not worth it with this particular build in mind. Not to say it?s a bad strat overall, just, if you try out THIS build, you have to play it with rerolls. It leads to your units being too weak early, and this build heavily relies on early board momentum as it targets upgrading the early available units.
You start to be more conservative with your gold collection as you recruit your units, but early game it is entirely OK to reroll a couple times to try and find the plethora of early game units you want.
As for XP, again, you do want to be aggressive and don?t feel bad about spending gold early to get early levels. However, you want to be smart about this. You want to watch your XP bar and think about when you will get to a multiple of 4 XP. Then you think about how much XP you will need for the next level, how much that will cost you, and then look at your gold and look at your bench. Don?t reroll if you are close to being able to afford a lvl-up.
Think about how much gold you have, how much gold you will likely have by the time you land on a multiple of 4 XP, and whether you will have another unit worth putting on the board (basically, is it 2* or at least 3x cost). Make things work so that you level up on pre-rounds where you have multiple of 4 XP, a relevant unit to add to your board, and enough gold to keep spending afterwards.
Overall, this build requires aggressive but CALCULATED and SMART expenditure early. Accrue the cheap pieces of your build (Axe, Batrider, Shadow Shaman) to 2* fast by rerolling once or twice per round (don?t devastate your economy endlessly rerolling ? aggressive does not translate into smorc).
You are trying to reach your own personal late game BEFORE other people, by constantly having more or AT LEAST equal pieces on board, and having those pieces be at least 2*.
Take advantage of those who like to sit on laurels and wait for 50 gold, start building a win streak and a powerful army EARLY then push that momentum to have a late-game ready army by the later mid game. Do not feel bad about rerolling.
Again, another reminder, do not drive your economy into the dirt. You want to keep above 10g at all times. Every time you re-roll and find a piece or two that you want early, you are spending more gold buying those pieces. So just be happy, and then stop rerolling.
Yes, definitely, do not just spend nothing on rerolls and hope to get what you want in the free reroll each pre-round. Definitely don?t be overly aggressive or reckless in your expenditures either.
Find a balance between rerolling and XP. You want to spend your money early and aggressively, but not all over the place. Focus on getting those cheap and common units upgraded. Then when your board is full of them, focus on getting another relevant piece. There are enough cheap and common units where you can have one more on your bench than you can fit on your board.
Once your board is full, and your bench has another member of the build ready to go, focus on the EARLIEST point you can EFFICIENTLY level up by buying XP. If your unit on the bench is not 2* yet, think about how rerolling to find it more may affect the best time to level up.
Maybe you will be 8xp (10 gold) away from a level in two rounds. How many rerolls can you fit before then to find one or two more pieces, afford to buy them, and then afford the 10gold in 2 turns future without dipping way too low in gold?
Having 11 gold instead of 28 gold is FINE if you have three 2* units and two 1* units when everyone else has two or three 2* units and one 1* unit. Being at 4 gold instead of 28 in the same situation is not fine. Be smart.
Rush those units to 2*, rush them out on the board ? they are cheap, they are common, you can do it consistently, just be smart about it.
AXE ? JUGGERNAUT ? BEASTMASTER ? DISRUPTOR ? SHADOW SHAMAN ? BATRIDER ? WITCH DOCTOR ? TROLL WARLORD ? SHADOWFIEND ? ENIGMA
Very easy to find early and very easy to upgrade quickly. People only have an axe for some sort of Warrior bonus and will usually transition out of it (sell it) after early, allowing you to collect at least a 2* Axe before the mid game. 3* Axe is quite possible and as far as LVL3?s go ? it is comparably easy to get, however, it is only there purely for the tankiness and not the impact so don?t go nuts for it.
Axe?s contribution to this team is to buy time and die for your individually powerful units, as well as giving your 3 other actually important orcs health. Axe himself has unimpressive impact on the enemy units and is there purely to support and strengthen your own team by tanking.
Place him far forward and shop around for him early to get him 2*. Past that, do not aggressively reroll?just?to try and pursue 3* Axe.
Another unit that becomes available quickly. People like Jugg early so you will be harder pressed to collect him however with some moderate amount of rerolling you should be able to get him 2* by the time mid game starts at the latest. Jugg is a great unit early because he offers a good AoE ability which is rare at that stage.
Orc bonus allows him to stay alive long enough to pull that off, however do not expect to benefit from the Warrior bonus unless you temp in a 3rd warrior, which I usually don?t do, but I won?t advise against it.
Juggernaut 3* is a monster and I hesitate to recommend pursue-ing it because of the cost. He is more rare and expensive than Axe so it is harder, but still possible. Definitely do not seek (reroll) exclusively to collect him past 2* until the later mid game.
The same paragraphs as for Juggernaut, but swap the names.
SHADOW SHAMAN ?
This unit is great in this team for the hex and ATK speed. However, it is not particularly tanky nor does it do much damage. You want to 2* this fast. The troll strat SUCKS early so do not overload on them. You only need 2 trolls to activate the bonus early and this can be one of them. Also one half of your shaman bonus, which doesn?t count until late.
Once you 2* this unit, relax on collecting him. 3* Shadow Shaman is very possible due to cost and rarity and I do recommend trying to do it for the 8 sec hex, however, do not aggressively collect this unit too early. A lot of my games have ended with a 3* SS on the team, but he wasn?t 3* for a while.
BAT RIDER ?
This unit is tricky. Seems good, but really, it isn?t. If you get an early Void Stones, drop it on this unit. The only time this unit becomes useful is once it starts attacking something that it ults, which usually takes too long as it needs to build it?s ult first ? then cast it ? then start attacking again. Its frailty usually means it doesn?t survive long enough to pull this off without items to help it out.
Once you get this to 2*, never collect another one of these. Let it be there purely for the early Troll bonus and as a 2* body. This and Axe are the units that you can easily 2* in the early game.
This unit is great early, and worth 2ing. Reroll once or twice and try to recruit 3 of these for the 2, then do NOT pursue 3*, as the power jump it gets compared to other 3* units just isn?t good enough. 3* Axe or Shadow Shaman is actually way more worth your resources if you want to pursue a 3*. If you want to pursue a 3* x2 unit, go for Beastmaster or Jugg instead.
Provides 2 important bonuses, one early ? one late. Troll bonus early for ATK speed and Warlock bonus late for lifesteal. Its ability can straight up win you rounds as it CC?s multiple pieces early which is very powerful for that stage of the game.
This unit is what you want on your team for its early single target damage and aoe ult. The Warlock synergy is good, but will only activate late-game so really it?s just there as a good strong attacking piece while your orcs distract enemy pieces.
The early damage this piece provides is very useful as you will be relying on Trolls and their ATK speed coupled with your Orcs? tankiness/ults to outlast your opponent otherwise ? which is usually possible, just not optimal. I?ve only ever had a 3* Shadowfiend once, and I didn?t really notice THAT much of a power spike from it, so probably only worth 2*?ing and then forgetting about.
So this is my favorite unit in the game. By the time you get disruptor on your board, you either have the 4 Orc bonus activated, or you are playing this strat incorrectly. This means that even a 1* Disruptor can front-line for you, survive long enough to ult, and then for all you care it can die.
2* Disruptor however adds a huge magic dmg to it?s AoE, so you have enemy pieces rooted, silenced and melting all at once. Always frontline this unit. The last half of your shaman bonus, allowing you to instantly hex an enemy unit at the start of each round. Great for tough PvE content.
Starting a round with Disruptor ult is INSANE and along with Shadow Fiend, adds a great and highly appreciated AoE magic dmg to the team, which you really wouldn?t expect from an Orc-Troll comp which already has ridiculous Auto-Attack power, but I guess thanks to this OP unit, you can have your cake and eat it too.
Do not bother trying to LVL3 this unit. The only units you should bother LVL3ing are some of your 1x and 2x cost units.
Again, by the time you place this piece on the board, it will activate your 4 Troll bonus ? which is teamwide atk speed for all units regardless of their race. This unit will also activate your 3 Warrior bonus, which is O.K but we don?t really care about it at this stage of the game. Troll warrior is just an incredibly individually powerful unit by itself, not to mention the synergy power as well.
TW and Disruptor are Epics, which means you only have a small chance to find them mid game. However, if you are playing this correctly, you will reach your midgame before anyone else. Every round before 25, you should be at least one level ahead. Your goal is to quickly accrue the cheap units in this lineup, then level up to fit them on your board to have a sizeable 2* rush army.
When you see TW or Disruptor, they will be the final pieces to your 4-count synergies for trolls and orcs, so your next step after buying one will be to figure out the most efficient and timely point you can level up to fit them in. Fitting in TW or Disruptor to your board begins your personal lategame when every one else is still in their mid-game, and at this point, you?ve basically taken it home.
Warlock bonus complete and another magic damage AoE. By the point you have Enigma on your bench, the game should basically be closing out. By the time you are able to hit LVL10 and actually put Enigma into play, you will be extremely poor as you haven?t been playing economy so you WILL struggle to hit LVL10.
Enigma?s AoE magic damage combined with disruptor?s AoE Silence/Root/Dmg ensures that your opponents, who are now also into their lategame, aren?t able to easily abuse their powerful units.
A lot of players will play economy, never reroll, sacrifice health and early power, hope to find some good units early in the free roll each pre-round, try to find those Kunka?s and Tidehunters and whatnot late, and then just roll out the high-cost army.
By the time they?re able to realise that strategy ? if you are utilising this strategy correctly ? those players will be at around 30-20% HP, and Enigma and Disruptor ults to start each round will completely shut them down.
Essentially, yea the warlock bonus is nice and the ability is powerful ? but by the time you?ve put Enigma into play, you already won the game 7 rounds ago. You?re just trying to make sure they don?t make any comebacks.
Really don?t shove all your units into a glob at one of your corners, it?s weak with this build and only ever to be done if you are encountering lots and lots of Assassin synergy builds.
The thing about formation is obviously there?s no best way to place your units because you should be taking not of how the other players place theirs and then try to react to that ? but here is a general rule of thumb for each stage of the game.
A very straight forward formation for this team is to spread out Horizontally, and have most of your units place up the board Vertically. So you?re essentially forming 3 spread lines in the Horizontal center with 1 square of distance in between each unit forming a sort of Zig-Zag pattern.
You can also try to play around with an arrow formation, being in the Vertical center and having your ranged pieces in a column with your frontliners ahead of that column in an upside-down V shape.
Positioning correctly is actually very important for this team. Rather than individually powerful units, you rely on synergy. This means that if your Shadow Shaman doesn?t get off a hex before it dies, you need to re-think it?s position. If you place BeastMaster in a too aggressively front-lined position and he gets killed 2 seconds into the round, you need to re-consider.
You want your synergy to shine and for each member to pull off what they bring to your team. Axe wants to soak damage and taunt, Jugg wants to soak SOME damage and get a good spin off, Witch Doctor wants to take little damage and play pinball, ShadowFiend wants to take NO damage and just kill things.
You need to ensure the positioning is correct for each member of your team, as although I have found that I have been winning hard with this strat, you can?t just mindlessly steamroll with it.
When facing tough assassin comps, having your 2 damage dealers insta-gibbed sucks. So try to protect it by positioning BeastMaster or Jugg or even BatRider in the back to bait assassins, with your important damage dealers ( TW and SF ) centered.
FRONTLINERS?? AXE, JUGG, BEASTMASTER
BACKLINERS?? SHADOW SHAMAN, WITCH DOC, BATRIDER
FRONTLINERS?? AXE, JUGG, BEASTMASTER
MIDLINERS?? SHADOW SHAMAN, WITCH DOC, BATRIDER
BACKLINERS?? SHADOW FIEND
VERY FRONT?? AXE, DISRUPTOR (If you don?t have disruptor, keep to the above formation)
ONE ROW BEHIND?? JUGG, BEASTMASTER
YET ONE MORE ROW BEHIND?? SHADOW SHAMAN, WITCH DOC, BATRIDER, TROLL WARLORD (have TW vertically centered)
FRONTLINERS?? AXE, DISRUPTOR, ENIGMA
MID LINERS?? JUGG, BEASTMASTER, SHADOW SHAMAN, WITCH DOCTOR
BACKLINERS?? TROLL WARLORD, SHADOWFIEND
You rely on synergy, early game rush, and momentum, so weaknesses can include ?
People highrolling on 2* Goblin/Mech (threatens your early WinStreak bonus)
People highrolling on 2* Druids (same as above)
People sniping your pieces out of the shop pool early game (particularly Juggernaut, Shadow Shaman)
People highrolling on MidGame 4+ knights (Shuts any streak you had down, killing your momentum)
Poor Positioning / RNG vs Assassin teams and AoE Mage teams, especially mid game
Late-late-late game ? if you allow the game to go too late, you?re going to get overwhelmed. High cost upgraded units beat the crap out of any cute synergy tactic all day long. Generally, when it?s time to fight the Black Dragon, you want to have basically already won the game and are just waiting for your last opponents? HP bars to close out.
Past that you need to ensure they don?t make any comebacks, as if you are playing this strat correctly ? yes any remaining lategame opponents will be very low HP, but you will also have almost no economy left to make adjustments with. Your late-game economy is the heaviest weakness of this build.
Individually, a lot of your pieces are weak ? BatRider, Axe and Shadow Shaman are not high tier at all, Witch Doctor, Jugg and Beastmaster aren?t particularly mind blowing and ShadowFiend is powerful but can die easily. These individual weaknesses are offset by your early aggressive upgrading and forcing out lots of pieces.
You want 5-6 units with at least 4 2*?s when everyone else has 4-5 units. You want 6-7 units with at least 6 2*?s before everyone has 6-7 units. You want 7-8 units with at least 1 3* and everything else at least 2* before eveyrone has 7-8. You get the point. It won?t ALWAYS happen, but you gotta try and spend to make it happen.
Items, much like formation, is another thing that I hesitate to suggest a guide for, because of the RNG of what items you and your opponents get. However if you?re willing to try this build out, here?s a general rule of thumb until you start to get your own grip on what works best for you.
Magic resist items make sense on tank characters most of the time, but really, having your Axe resist aoe damage adds little value to this build ? you don?t want to keep him alive vs aoe magic stuff, as he isn?t there for any other reason but to taunt enemies and die for your team. Put magic resist items on your Shadow Fiend or Troll Warlord to help ensure they don?t get Razor?d to death before they can kill stuff.
Armor items again make sense on tank characters and Axe doesn?t need these either. Put armor items on your Juggernaut and Beastmaster as they will be acting as a frontline but are not as naturally tanky as Axe. Their damage output is higher and having them survive longer is helpful.
Health and Mana regen items I usually put on my trolls as their attack speed means with a Void Stone they can pump out an ability much much faster, three of your four trolls are there exclusively for their useful abilities so give them Mana regen. Health regen ensures they can keep auto attacking through AoE especially if you ever unlock Warlock bonus.
Damage and Attack Speed items should go on your Shadow Fiend or your Troll Warlord. Obviously you won?t have these until your mid-game and items usually accrue in the early game, so it is your choice to save them for later, or you could put them on BatRider, though I don?t really recommend giving him more than a single Attack Speed item. Try to put damage items on ShadowFiend and attack speed items on Troll Warlord.
-Magic Resist and -Armor items, Juggernaut can actually make use of a -magic resist item early as his spin is magic damage. Disruptor or Enigma are what you want to put -magic resist items late-game. -Armor items are hard to upgrade so I would really put these on anyone, perhaps Bat Rider to help his damage output before his ability comes out.
LifeSteal items go to Shadow Fiend and Troll Warlord almost all of the time, they can be good on BeastMaster if you get one very early.
Increased health items can go to your Juggernaut or Beastmaster.
I am not scared to reroll once or twice each round, I can collect my pieces CONSISTENTLY and EARLY because they are cheap and common and not very sought after. I level up aggressively but EFFICIENTLY and wait for turns where my XP is in a multiple of 4. This achieves me early game power advantage by having a higher average number of units on my board, with a higher average LVL of units on my board.
I rarely ever if at all buy pieces that do not say ?Troll, Orc or Shadowfiend/Enigma?. The only time I do this is if I am direly missing a key member (example ? Once I found 0 juggernauts by lvl 4-5 so I just got a Lycan and started upgrading that instead)
This early advantage carries on into the midgame where I have enough board space to start seeing the Racial and Class-based synergies be the main reason my board is powerful. I am the highest level, or tied for highest level, in the game.
I have at least 1 more piece than everyone else and my units are all 2* because they were cheap and common to find and I spent money making sure I found them. Infact, once of my pieces is getting close to 3*. My 2* orcs have more health than their 2s. My 2?trolls attack fast and get fast ults out. If they had the same size team on their board as I do, they might win ? but I have more.
I?m high enough level now where Shadow Fiend appeared, and I just levelled up at the soonest efficient time to fit him on my board. Now I have even more pieces, and my boards damage output just went up.
I am poor after buying ShadowFiend and XP, careful not to dip my economy too low, I stop rerolling and I am carried each round by the sheer multitude of pieces on my board. As soon as it recovers above 15 by maintaining rerolls my Shadow Fiend is at least close to 2* and I see a Troll Warlord or Disruptor appear in the shop.
I have Troll Warrior or Disruptor on my bench, Shadow Fiend is 2* and I am now seeking the best timing to level up enough to fit in that 4x unit. Hell, the next time I hit a multiple of 4 and can afford to level up ? i?m doing it, even if it lands me below 10 gold.
My board is soon 8 members strong when everyone else is at 6-7. My gold count is low and I?m relaxing on rerolling. Until I hit at least 15-20 gold i?m just going to not reroll and spend my time between rounds focusing on my board positioning and buying what I need from the free roll each round.
I?ve calmed down on re-rolling, my unit collection has slowed down and by the time I have a unit 3* or see that other missing 4x cost unit, I can afford to buy it, but because of my aggressive spending up until this point I will struggle to meet the level requirement to fit it on the board.
Now it?s up to me to rarely ever re-roll for the 3* 1x / 2x cost units, the 2* 4x units? just build economy like everyone else and get that level up for 9 pieces. Four trolls, four orcs, a demon?too many units with too much synergy for people to handle this early.
By this point, the game is essentially mine and I am waiting for a win. Any rerolls I do now are purely for the sake of 3*ing someone. If Enigma shows up, I will be very far off of affording 10 members but luckily the other players in the room are either dead or level 7-8 at >50% hp.
By the time they get to level 9, I will have recovered an economy and I might even have two different 3* 1x or 2x cost units. Soon-ish I will be able to afford to place Enigma on my board, and at that point, they won?t have time to throw their economy at me.
So yea this strategy has consistently won me many many games in a row, I?ve found that through all RNG of the shop and items in this game, hard targetting early orcs and trolls and rushing your XP bar, following this playstyle has basically just torn through the Knight rank in no time and I?m into Bishop having been stuck at knight 1-9 for a long time before discovering and learning this personal strategy of mine.
I think I understand it enough to have explained how it works in a way that isn?t confusing, hopefully it helps other players who are seeking to win more games