Card draw simulator
|None. Self-made deck here.|
cowarnergames · 111
I'm ashamed to say I'd forgotten about our friend Rocket Racoon since my first run-through of Galaxy's Most Wanted, but I would be the first to admit what a huge mistake that was. I think patience (and maybe Venom's release) was all I needed to reinvigorate my enjoyment for this crazy little dude. That said, he's growing to be one of my favorite heroes and I've had a blast playing this deck. Don't let the 45 card deck scare you away, he'll be drawing plenty of cards and it provides just enough of a buffer from those extra encounters.
Maximizing Rocket's hero ability is a fun puzzle and finding ways to queue those minions up for an excess damage opportunity comes in two main sizes: even and odd hit point totals. Seems very obvious, but it wasn't until I noticed I was knocking them out efficiently (according to the standard definition), that I needed a variety of ways to land some hits. In order to waste the least amount of damage while still triggering the extra card draw, it boils down to a simple concept - stick odd points of damage on an even HP minion, and even damage onto odd HP minions.
With all of the signature weapons Rocket brings to the table doing even amounts of damage, these are the cards that can sneak in those elusive odds:
Daredevil: A core set classic. Don't worry about his cost as mid to late game you'll be able to afford him comfortably due to your extra card draw. Not only will he help you flip down more and keep that threat under control, he puts the 1 point of damage wherever you need it.
Ironheart: With plenty of double resources you'll be able to play her easily, helping with more card draw and again, placing that 1 damage.
Beat 'Em Up: A situational card for most decks, this is the perfect answer to a minion swarm to combo with a Rocket Launcher. Works great to set up a large draw if you happen to have a few minions out.
Turn the Tide: Easily one of my favorite cards in general, it combos perfectly with Rocket's main job of thwarting to add a substantial 3 damage anywhere, helping prime those higher health minions and again working really well with his signature weapons.
SQUISHY? I DON'T THINK SO
Let's talk about Rocket's weaknesses and how to leverage them into taking advantage of those hero/AE abilities. Anytime we see a 9 HP hero you can nearly guarantee someone is going to throw the word "squishy" out there, and while that's partially true, Rocket can easily become quite the beast. Between Cybernetic Skeleton and Endurance we've got our boy up 15 HP, a higher ceiling than a lot of heroes out there. Having such a high pool of health allows for Rocket to tank instead of his allies, keeping him ready and able to thwart before flipping down to heal.
Most people won't run Down Time and Crew Quarters, but being able to flip down and heal for 7 every flip removes the need to rely on chump blocking. His ability to take villain hits to the face allows you to keep Groot out indefinitely for minion blocking, Daredevil and Jack Flag until their time is up, and keeps one ally slot open for your rotators Eros, Ironheart and our fellow furry friend Lockjaw who you can always whistle from your discard if you're in need of some emergency thwarting and a body.
GETTING OFF THE GROUND AND THEN PROMPTLY HIDING UNDER IT
Let's talk about opening hand priorities. Yes, Rocket is crazy and has plenty of tech and his abilities center around them, but to get there we have to stay alive and not dying early is huge. Because of this I'd rather drop Groot, Cybernetic Skeleton or even an Endurance round 1 so that I can survive the first turn. Secondarily, I'll look for Heroic Intuition or Thruster Boots next to allow myself to flip to AE after handling a chunk of threat. Its textbook Marvel Champions, but not being able to come out of an AE turn and thwart yourself back to safety is huge way to lose control of the pace early. Once you're set up there, start looking for a couple of your weapons to handle some early minion encounters, drop the Side Holster when you can so that you aren't without that third available slot later when you need it, and get that Down Time played to make your flip and recover worthwhile.
On that note, flipping down to heal typically leaves a gap in pace, forcing you to handle the threat that piled up. With a copy of Ready to Rumble, you can comfortably thwart the main scheme low, flip down and spend next turn healing and then popping right back up to ready and thwart it all back down. Add an I've Got a Plan to the mix and its like you haven't skipped a beat. Letting his tech do the brunt of the damage for him, Rocket is free to run around thwarting like mad and drawing even more cards.
DRAWING A CARD AND THEN ANOTHER ONE AND THEN ANOTHER ONE AND THEN ANOTHER ONE AND THEN...
After some setup you can build towards some turns like this: You start in AE with 6 cards, exhaust your Avengers Mansion to go to 7, discard that empty Battery Pack to go up to 9 and flip over. Because your upgrades have been steadily dropped onto the table you're going to be holding that One Way or Another that you then play to fish out the easiest side scheme, or even one that brings out a minion too and now you're sitting at 11 cards. Thwart that side scheme for 4 and clear it, draw from Skilled Investigator to be at 12 cards, play I've Got a Plan to ready and thwart 5 off the main scheme (back down to 10 cards in hand), then spend 1 on Clear the Area to empty the main scheme too, drawing another for the kicker and being back at 9, playing a Turn the Tide to kill a minion, then blast everyone with a Rocket Launcher to draw your cards for "Murdered You!" already with 8 cards in hand. You get the picture...
Obviously that situation would have to arise, but within that sequence are lots of smaller ways to trigger extra cards draws and elongate a turn. If you wind up in that scenario and don't have minions in play, feel free to drop some damage onto the villain or play those couple of upgrades you've been waiting to sneak in. Early versions of this deck ran a couple copies of Foiled!, but they've since been replaced with 2 Pivotal Moments. Careful on wasting resources to play them early, they are more of a late game closer to burst the villain down alongside one final blast from all your weapons.
TARGET LOCKED (AND CONFUSED)
Before we go any further, let's talk about our secret weapon: the Sonic Rifle. Yes, we all know confusion is amazing in true solo, but with a cost of 3, it can sometimes be a tough ask. Enter the Battery Pack. Similarly to our ally slots, we want to have a mainstay (the rifle for sure), a secondary powerful slot to use our Battery Packs on and with the addition of the Side Holster, we can keep a rotating weapon on hand too, giving us further flexibility with our Tinkering ability. By keeping the Sonic Rifle in play and consistently topping it off with a Battery Pack, we can reliably confuse without having to ever pay the full cost of the card again. Knowing that its initial 2 charges are no longer quite as precious, we can combo it up with some other cards as well once we have 3 counters on it, making sure we're careful not to use its final charge as it does have the "Uses" keyword and will discard once empty. Once the engine is up and running you can eventually keep the 3-cost weapons in play consistently and only ever use your Tinkering to throw those Battery Packs away only to return them again with Salvage. Once you're in control of the board you'll be using this trick over and over again it'll start to feel like a cheat code.
It looks something like this: Use the Rifle to confuse an enemy, play a Reload and then hit them again before using Rocket's Pistol or the Particle Cannon to finish them off and draw some cards. Or better yet, play Eros using a Salvage to confuse 2 minions, toss a Battery Pack on top of your deck, hit the confused minion with the Rifle for 3 after setting it up for excess damage, draw into that Battery Pack, play it and go ahead and top off your Sonic Rifle again. If you've already got one in play, Reload your Pack, use it again, confuse the villain and flip down worry free before discarding the Battery Pack and drawing again.
A couple final fun notes:
The Power in All of Us can help get Groot, Avengers Mansion, Ironheart played early and makes paying for Beat 'Em Up nice and cheap. Nothing to spend it on, check your discard for the goodest boy and call him in.
Keeping Jack Flag in that second ally slot alleviates some threat problems, preps side schemes for a nice Clear the Area/Skilled Investigator combo and lets you place 2 points of damage where you need for Rocket's hero ability.
Rediscovering Rocket has been a blast and I've been playing it a lot. So far he's taken down Standard (I) Hela, Thanos and Zola as well as Expert (I) Ultron, Loki, Kang, Mutagen Formula, Ebony Maw, Crossbones, Drang and Rhino. Enjoy!