Jankyard | Mixing It Up
Greetings Cybertronians, Autobot AL reporting in. It's been awhile since Siege II: War For Cybertron (wave 4) has been released. Today, I would like to discuss about my style of deck building - mixed pips.
I started testing mixed pip decks since Siege I: War For Cybertron was released. My chosen line-up was Ultra Magnus, City Commander and General Optimus Prime, Infantry Leader. Siege I introduced a variety of Secret Action cards to the game, which enables players to have options that allow an action of sorts on their opponent's turn. This played a huge part in piquing my interest in going mixed pips.
I wanted the ability to control my opponents with cards such as Disruption, Disruptive Entrance, Espionage, and Security Checkpoint. Mixed pips decks are not favoured by many players as you may not get the ideal pips flipped during your attack or defense (i.e. blue pips flipped on the offense, and orange pips flipped on the defense). These occurrences may cause one to flip a table.
Unfortunately, as Siege I was the first wave to release Secret Action cards, the variety of options in the game was not good enough to properly support mixed pips. It was only with the release of Siege II that we got a better balance of options.
Mixed pips decks would prefer to have characters with the Focus keyword, such as General Optimus Prime, Infantry Leader, and Private Arcee. Focus allows you to filter out the pips that you do not want to see during combat.
With the release of Siege II, characters like General Optimus Prime, Galactic Commander and Private Turbo Board provide even greater benefits to players playing mixed pips. Newly released Secret Actions such as Sabotage Armaments, Jam Signals and Overheat also allow more survivability to mixed pips decks on the defense.
Building a mixed pips deck requires a good balance of blue, orange and white pips. This would affect the types of battle cards selected due to the limited slots. Most characters that support mixed pips tend to have their abilities trigger on the attack, while such support is lacking on the defense. This prompted me to go with a more defensive build instead to try surviving opponents' attacks and trigger my abilities on the offense.
Usual staples for decks such as Handheld Blaster and Improvised Shield are not included in my consideration for a mixed pips deck. Yes, they are great when it comes to being flipped but they do not provide much benefit from being drawn. Removing them allows for deck building flexibility in selecting more useful battle cards, in exchange for a slight disadvantage on pips strength.
I also personally like to hope for the chance to get a better option of top decking something useful instead of a dead card.
General Optimus Prime, Galactic Commander is by far one of my favourite mixed pips deck I have built. With a huge 8 attack on the bot mode and a whopping 21 health, 'Galaxy Prime' naturally comes with a hefty price of 15 stars. Having 10 stars remaining would mean two 5-star cost characters to form a 3-wide unit.
*As of the release of this article, Vector Sigma has proven that a blue defensive Galaxy Prime deck is the top meta deck at the moment, but we are exploring a fun mixed pips variant.
Drag Strip, Cutthroat Warrior
Drag Strip's alt mode ability supports mixed pips by allowing me to draw 2 cards if I trigger. Card draw is always good as it provides options.
I am not focused on flipping him as I will be prioritising flips on my other characters as described further on.
Eject (Electronic Surveillance)
Eject is chosen because of my local meta where Bold is a problem. I also like having Stealth on him which keeps him safe early on. This allows him to be the first bot sent out to attack, and ensures that enemies won't be able to Bold their way into one-shotting him.
His alt mode ability also allows me more assurances in stacking my deck for a trigger on either of my other characters.
Flipping and Attack Order
The great thing about this line-up is that I am not fussed about flips if I go first or second. My first flip would always be Eject and he will always be the first to be sent out on the attack.
On the next turn, Eject can be flipped back to gain Stealth (for survivability and to spread out damage to another character if you went first), and to help check on the top 2 cards to assist in triggering Drag Strip's ability. Drag Strip then goes in for the attack.
Keeping Galaxy Prime in alt mode keeps him safe from Marksmanship in the early game. His first flip should come in the subsequent turn when it's time for him to attack. In the later stages of the game, depending on what has been flipped in your scrap pile, you may want to flip Eject a couple more times to ensure you get a trigger on Galaxy Prime. Otherwise you'd be flipping Galaxy Prime every turn to go for his different triggers.
I am running a total of 42 battle cards instead of the minimum 40. This is made up of 21 Actions and 21 Upgrades. There are 17 Orange pips, 23 Blue pips and 4 White pips.
B - Blue
O - Orange
W - White
G - Green
K - Black
3x Grenade Launchers (O)
3x Ion Blaster Of Optimus Prime (B)
2x Backup Beam (BG)
1x Sturdy Javelin (W)
1x Enforcement Batons (OG)
2x Force Field (W)
2x Sparring Gear (OG)
1x Bashing Shield (OG)
2x Energy Pack (O)
2x Shoulder Holster (B)
2x Matrix Of Leadership (OB)
3x Security Checkpoint (BB)
3x Marksmanship (B)
3x Leap Into Battle (B)
3x Sabotaged Armaments (B)
2x Disruptive Entrance (B)
3x Supercharge (O)
2x Disruption (O)
1x Ramming Speed (O)
1x Espionage (WG)
Arcee, Skilled Fighter
3x Peace Through Tyranny (OO)
3x Fight For Position (KO)
2x Power Punch (O)
1x Bashing Shield (OG)
1x Force Field (W)
I am a personal fan of Shoulder Holster, and with Galaxy Prime allowing for 3 Utility upgrades to be equipped, I jumped at the chance to have a holster on him allowing for 2 Ion Blasters which boosts both attack and armour! I can still add on to that by equipping a Sparring Gear or Bashing Shield on him. In the Blue heavy variant, having a Tough 2 or 3 (depending if a Sparring Gear or a full suite of Extra Paddings are equipped) is sufficient to block huge hits from opponents, but in a mixed pips deck we will need additional assurances.
Supercharge and Backup Beam are there to maximise the potential to trigger Galaxy Prime's ability. We need to suit him up as fast as we can for him to shine as the leading commander worthy of his rank and title. These two cards are especially crucial when it comes to a mirror match-up.
This mixed pips deck usually is able to withstand aggro decks, though damage output must be calculated properly, but it has certain issues if facing full defensive control decks due to a lack of offensive power. This is where Arcee comes in to replace Drag Strip. 9 Orange pips battle cards are swapped in exchange for 9 Blue pips, making the deck a lot more offensive. By increasing the Orange pips ratio, the deck is able to push through defensive decks by utilising Arcee's ability to deal pierce damage before they are able to properly setup.
With that, I hope that you guys have had a good read on my thoughts on a mixed pips deck. Thank you for reading till the end, and do share with us your own mixed pips creations.
Autobot AL, out!