Elements, Redux: Further Thoughts On Each Element

A while back, I did a post on Elements: the Game. Now for some more details, because hey, you guys never get bored of reading about a game you don’t play.

Life. Good at: Healing, efficient beaters. Bad at: Removal. Life decks tend to grab large fistfuls of HP and use their cheap and beefy creatures to beat you down.

Earth. Good at: Taking hits, dishing them out. Bad at: Killing enemy creatures. Earth is pretty much as scrappy as you’d expect. Its grand annoying tactic is shrieker spam – delay enemy creatures with petrify and guard effects, while unleashing big hitters that burrow into the ground (halving attack power but making them impossible to target) and slowly pummel the opponent to death.

Aether. Good at: Too freaking much. Bad at: Being fun to play against. Aether is not a deck you feel better after engaging. In fact, usually you will come out with an expression of acute rage and a passionate hatred of whichever fool decided that a permission deck was a good idea. Aether has one of the nastiest single-target removal spells in the game, plus a shield that grants invulnerability to physical damage, a sword that can lobotomise enemy creatures, and multiple creatures it’s impossible to hit. 90% of Aether decks you will encounter boil down to “cast intangible creatures, drop a Dimensional Shift every third turn so enemy creatures can’t attack, and just laugh for the rest of the day.” And that’s not particularly rewarding to play against, because it means you can’t actually influence the game all that much.

Dark. Good at: Lifedrain, underhanded ploys. Bad at: Defences. Dark decks tend to be heavy on indirect moves – stealing enemy weapons and shields, draining enemy quanta, throwing around stuff that deals damage and restores life. Sadly, Dark creatures tend to be alarmingly fragile.

Fire. Good at: Removal, speed. Weakness: Creatures are even more fragile than Dark. Of all the common critters Fire has, only two have more than one HP. And while the lava golem can pump itself up, that requires a supply of earth quanta. The phoenix is interesting, however; the confounded thing just won’t die and is almost impossible to get rid of.

Light. Good at: Protection, heavy hitting. Weakness: Not cheap. Light decks tend to be elite but expensive forces that heal up when they’re about to die and simply won’t stop coming.

Gravity. Good at: Dishing out damage, resilience. Bad at: Mass removal. Gravity is the more or less sole province of the Momentum ability, which can go right through shields, and the Gravity Pull ability, which uses a creature to soak up hits. However, since their primary shield only stops creatures with high toughness, a large number of smaller troops can just walk right past.

Death. Good at: Wearing down the enemy, blocking attacks. Bad at: Killing big creatures. Death decks are good at a slow, grinding, attrition-based strategy that’s heavy on poison and the creation of skeletons. However, an enemy with a high resilience will dish out several hits before it dies and that’s not usually a good position to be in.

Time. Good at: speed, numbers. Bad at: Reliability. Time is the only element to get persistent card draw, but their only removal is temporary (or requires a lot of scarabs and a supply of gravity quanta) and some of their stuff, such as the Fate Egg, can backfire badly if you’re unlucky.

Entropy. Good at: creature destruction, acceleration. Bad at: Reliability. Compared to Entropy, Time is dependable. And cheaper. But Time doesn’t have acceleration like Nova, while Entropy does. Schrodinger’s Cat works nicely with Death stuff, allowing you to mass-produce skeletons and bone walls.

Air. Good at: mass removal, sledgehammer blows. Bad at: Heavy removal. Air encourages a pricey but devastating alpha-strike approach with large flying creatures everywhere.

Water. Good at: Endurance, delaying tactics. Bad at: Direct damage. Water is good at freezing creatures, cutting down enemy numbers, and otherwise holding off defeat. However, apart from one or two creatures, it’s not so good at inflicting direct harm.

– OSM out


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