The Science of Search, Part 3

The Search Continues

The Man of Steel expansion was not kind to the continuing efforts of VS players to improve deck consistency, featuring new twists (of the plot variety) to character search that in practice were far inferior to previous character search cards for their stamped teams.  Doing nothing to redeem itself from being scorned as one of the worst VS sets, DSM provided players with these dubious treasures:

In fairness to Team Superman, Man of Tomorrow was somewhat easier to use than Costume Change, since you did not have to search for a different version of the character you pitched.  However, regretfully, you could only search for a character named Superman.  Given that one of the dominant mechanics of Team Superman was that you could play a Superman each turn from turn 3 onwards, this wasn’t so bad, but it forced a player to play that particular build of he wanted to minimize the luck factor while piloting TS.

The Exchange was a two-for-one deal, since one could search for either a New Gods or a Darkseid’s Elite character, making it the definitive search card for playing either team or a team-up between NG and DE.  The problem was the mathematics involved with pitching cards to fulfill The Exchange’s cost requirement.  The greater the cost of the character, the more likely it was that the player wouldn’t have the right cost of cards to toss.  Even if he did, sometimes it would involve putting more than one card into the KO pile, which made it an expensive search card to play, leading to card disadvantage.  Not a bad card, really, just not as good as the search cards that had come before.

The standout search card of DSM turned out to be the the first plot twist that searched for locations, team stamped to the team then renowned for its location dependence and manipulation – the League of Assassins.

The Demon’s Head was a very welcome addition to the struggling League of Assassins, since their strength really lay in their locations and a method of searching for them would be a necessary element of augmenting their playability and power.  Moreover, since their primary character search card was also a location, The Demon’s Head indirectly worked as a character searcher as well.  It was fantastic flexibility for the cost of a card and a character exhaust, with the added bonus of dumping the searched location in your resource row so that it could be used immediately.  Great card that was balanced for what it did.  Had this ability existed on, say, a character, it would have been ridiculously overpowered.

Next:  A Knight to Remember


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