This week in ELO has brought a game balance problem to my attention. Now that Copy Bonus cards are becoming a little bit more prominent, and many clans are getting powerful 8 power cards, SoB clans are starting to feel outdated. In UR's delicate ecosystem, SoB clans were usually a balancing force. They messed up games for clans that have incredibly good synergy between bonus and ability. A good deck had to be able to defend against both SoA and SoB without losing the ability to win rounds.
A good example of how damaging underpowered SoB clans are to the game is Jungo. Askai is currently unbanned, and the vast majority of ELO players are either running him or have tried to run him this week. If SoB clans weren't weak in the current metagame, running Jungo would pose a risk of a low damage draw, even with Askai. Many Jungo staples have mediocre damage, if they are deprived of their bonus. With SoB clans too weak to threaten Jungo, they are becoming overused. The same can be said of All Stars... Deprived of their incredible round-winning bonus, they struggle to secure the rounds they need. However with Saki's arrival, and Robb Cr unbanned, All Stars pack an even bigger round winning punch and gain the ability to wall vs SoB clans.
Has anyone else noticed this? I think Lizbeth is a step in the right direction, but her price puts her out of reach of many players...
For Piranas you need to balance your ability to win 3 rounds with your ability to win the match on 2 rounds. SOB is not a true combat bonus so Piranas have a tough time playing a completely defensive "I neutralize your biggest threat" game which Skeelz, Junkz or Ulu Watu excel at. Puff and Sting are characters who help you win 3 rounds, but can be a disaster if you only win 2 rounds. This is why Hawkins is the most difficult character to play in Piranas. If you win with him, you really MUST win 3.
Win 3 sounds good but there are clans where it is very difficult to win 3 against, such as Jungo and Skeelz.
Consistent Piranas decks do not deviate from the 4 damage standard. As long as you are hitting for 4 and the occasional big hit with Coleridge or Lizbeth, you should be ok with winning 2 most of the time.
But I do recommend Sting over Raeth. Raeth needs a minimum investment of 1 pill. At 2 pills, Sting has already overtaken Raeth's attack bonus (30 to 29). Raeth's only real advantage is the extra damage, which is occasionally neutralized
Raeth>Sting, Sting is courageous, and Raeth gets his ability every turn. Plus the extra damage is worth it, even if it is neutralized every now and then. Sure, 10 power is nice, but the opponent sees it coming every time, and can just toss a card or counterattack. I'm not saying Raeth is immune to this, but his ability not being courageous helps an aweful lot.