Recap ~ Mana Management: Summoning Cost Reduction ~

Summary: In the game of Eye of Judgment, mana management plays a crucial role.  Despite the fact a player is guranteed to get 2 mana every turn, many creatures in this game require greater than 2 mana, and often these creatures are ones that becomes the winning move of the game.  It appears that many creatures introduced in the Set.2 has greater than 2 mana.  There are even creatures now who steals exit mana, destroy your mana pool during opponent’s turn etc.  So management of mana becomes even more important in the Set.2.  In this Recap series, I have summarized one of new way to improve your mana pool that was introduced in the Set.2, called “Summoning Reduction.”

Despite the promise to one of a blog reader that I would try to summarize the list of creatures to allow better Mana Management, it took me so long before I can write this Article because I had to first complete the card library section to do this.  So my apology to the reader.

What is mana management?

Mana is the currency in EOJ.  You pay mana to summon a creature, reactivate a creature, turn a creature or cast a spell.  As in the real world, many times if you can pay more, you get better stuff/service.  Unlike the game of Magic the Gathering, EOJ games mana management is a quite different.  First of all, there is no specific mana pool based on the creature’s element.  Secondly, basic method of gaining mana in EOJ is 2 mana per turn (no matter what happens, the player will always get 2 mana every turn)

Based on my extremely limited experiece with MtG, I felt like EOJ is, generally speaking, more mana constrained game than MtG.  So managing mana, using efficiently and saving up mana,  is extremely important in this game.  In this blog entry, I will be focusing on the mana building rather than using efficiently part.

In a big picture there are 5 ways to buid up mana in EOJ.

1) Saving – If you pass your turn, you have 4 mana instead of 2 in the following turn.  Or if you cast a 1 mana creature instead of 2 mana creature, you will have 3 mana next turn.

2) Spell Boost – Cash in your money order or check.  Use spells like Altar, Feast, or Absolver Sacrament to gain mana.

3) Mana generating creature’s abilty – Invest put in to a saving.  Once your saving matures i.e. death of creatures like Novogus Catapalt, or Set.1 Wood phantom, you gain mana back.  Alternatively, invest in a creature.   Summon a creature and as long as they survive, when specific triggering event occurs you gain interest (mana) like Lord Hu, Wormak, DTT etc.

4) Mana steal – Robbery!  Our old friend Isle of Kadena, and new concept in Set.2 tying dodge with mana steal.

5) Price reduction – By reducing the cost of a creature, you are essentially spending less for the same material.  In Set.1, there were creatures that reduced the Activation Cost of other creatures like Scion Biolith Lord; however, there was no creature to reduced Summoning Cost.  Since Summoning is generally better way to spending your mana than activating an existing creatures, this new concept will be one of key mana management concept in the Set.2.

Which creatures has Summoning Cost Reduction Ability?

116. Beacon of Cai-Shae – 1 from other allied Fire creatures

121. Noram Zealot – 2 from allied Earth Missionary

122. Flame Archmage – 1 from other allied Church of Parmus creatures

123. Flameheart – 1 from other allied Fire creatures.

126. General Lug – 1 from other allied Fire creatures

137. Aluhja Zealot – 2 from allied Wood Missionary

142. Admiral Belta – 1 from other allied Water creatures

154. Visvar Vaas Zealot – 2 from allied Water Missionary

158. Marshal Akhum – 1 from allied Earth creatures

169. Tolicore Zealot – 2 from allied Fire Missionary

174. Lord Hu – 1 from other allied Wood creatures

186. Sciondar Gateway – 1 from other allied Biolith creatures

Source: Summoning Cost Reduction

Summary:

  • Zealots reduce Summoning cost by 2 but can only reduce the specific type of Zealots
  • Warlords can reduce their corresponding element creatures Summoning Cost by 1
  • Warlords equivalent in Biolith is the Sciondar Gateway
  • Archmage can reduce Church of Parmus Creatures’ Summoning Cost by 1
  • Flameheart can reduce other allied fire creatures’ Summoning cost by 1

Conclusion

In this blog entry, I have listed all the creatures with Summoning Cost reduction ability.  Summoning Cost reduction is new way of virtually increasing your mana pool.  In certain situations this ability is better than other mana pool increasing method.  For example, spell boost can be blocked by opponent using Spellshield.  Saved up mana could be lapsed.  So although at first this may not appear to be direct way of increasing mana pool, by reducing mana consumption you are essentially increasing mana pool.  When you are using uni-elemental deck including Warlord or Gateway in your deck would be a nice way to increase overall mana as long as you can ensure they stay alive for awhile.

Lastly, in this particular blog entry it appears that Fire creatures have more cards to support summoning reduction; hense, better mana management; however, it appears this way only because I have picked Summoning Cost reduction as the focus of topic in this entry.  For example, in Set.2 Water creatures can  steal mana from opponent based on their dodge.  So different element have different way of generating mana with Set.2.

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3 responses to this post.

  1. Posted by Paydak on April 5, 2008 at 11:56 am

    Discounting the Zealots, I think the only interesting card in that batch is the Beacon, as it’s really the only one you could try to build a deck around. You can’t build a deck around the warlords or even really rely on those cards being an essential part of your strategy because you have little control over when you draw them, though they might see some use in some decks. Flameheart in of itself is actually a pretty bad card, but would be viable if you used it in conjunction with the Beacon, which actually seems to be an insanely obvious card interaction by the designers (gotta love linear deck building). The question is, can you maintain enough board control to get the engine going in time, because neither of these cards do squat on the offensive side. Since you’re pretty much forced to use nearly all fire creatures that cost 2 or more to properly take advantage of this, I can’t really see any strategy except lizards maybe mixed with cubics being viable. Lizards allow you to muster enough firepower in the early game to allow you to even get to the point where you can get a return on investment, or heck, even cast, the other cards. Additionally, because of the cards that reward you for having dead lizards, you’re at least somewhat rewarded for your early game offensive, but defensively weak lizard blitzkrieg.

    If you can get enough outside card draw (which I’m not sure you can at this point), I think it would be interesting to use the set 1 fire dominion card in a deck like this, as you’d have many opportunities to wipe the board clean in conjunction with the Flameheart.

    Reply

  2. Posted by houshasen on April 6, 2008 at 12:30 am

    @Paydak

    > You can’t build a deck around the warlords or even really rely on those cards being an essential part of your strategy because you have little control over when you draw them

    A friend of mine told me that in MtG,there are cards to allow you to select a specific cards from library. Although as you have seen EOJ Set.2 have such ability in certain extent, it only applies mainly to non-URs so I am sure the control over a single card in the EOJ is much less compared to other CCGs.

    This is why I believe in the game of EOJ, if you were to build a deck around some cards, they need to be at least 2 or ideally 3. Plus chance of the key creature getting destroyed is relatively high in this game and currently no way to return UR from graveyard. However, here is a little boring statistics.

    – Each draw have 1/30 chance to get a specific card.

    – This means your first hand has 5/30= 1/6 chance to pull the key card.

    – Since you can Mulligan once without any penaty in this game, you increase this to 10/30 = 1/3.

    Now generally speaking, most games if played properly lasts at least 20 to 30 turns, which means in addition to the mulligan you have 10 to 15 additional draws per game.

    Statistically speaking this would give 20/30 (66%) or 25/30 (83%)chance to get the card you want.

    Now if you add draw card ability possessing creatures, Mesmer’s Errand, and/or Mesmer’s Envoy etc. you can furthure increase your chance.

    All this is based on the idea you have only 1 key card in your deck. If you have another card that can be used as a key, you can basically double the probability of drawing one or the other.

    Generally speaking, the really good players appear to win about 75% of time, so if I can randomly select a cut point, I would choose this number i.e. if you can draw a key card at 75% of time, you are set to play very competitive deck.

    With only 1 key card in the deck, this can be achieved after 23 – 10 = 13 additional card draws after mulligan.

    Long story short, my personal theory is that I should not be relying on a single card to build my deck, but if I were to choose to do so, I think with proper tactics and strategy, you can get the single card in your hand with relatively high probability.

    I would agree with you about dominion. Although 2 creature sacrifice seems a lot, with the set.2 cards ability of increasing field numbers, each elemental dominion can be made as strong as or even more than 1 per deck limited Blinding Sky.

    Reply

  3. Don’t forget Mana Banking!

    Seriously, check out my guide on the forums. However w/ the new zealots it puts a hinder on M-Bank decks like mine.

    Reply

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