Splinterlands does not fail to impress, and it's unlikely that we will be through with all the characters, abilities and strategies in the game. Maybe, the enormity of the permutations and combinations is what makes the game that much more fun. I am not sure there would be many who would have grown bored of the game.
That brings us to the topic at hand – a look at one of the cards in the game. Today, we will be discussing the Stonesplitter Orc. The Orc is a melee attacker with an attack value of three. That is quite an impressive stats for use at level 1. Those who play the game know that there aren’t many monsters that can boast such high attack value. Do I use the Orc? Yes and no. I will explain both shortly.
But before we get going with the Stonesplitter, let’s take a moment to understand the game. I am sure many newbies, and wannabes ( 😊 ) would want to know more about the game.
What Game is Splinterlands?
Well, it is one of the earliest blockchain-based collectible games. Though I started playing the game relatively late, I should have had gotten going early in hindsight. Anyway, no need to despair. There are so many opportunities no matter when you start.
Splinterlands is a digital card game that allows you to collect, trade, battle, rent, and even earn on the cards. It is one of the most generous games that I have seen where cards, potions, Dark Energy Crystals (DEC. Cryptocurrency) are given out every day to thousands of players for just playing and winning daily quests. And there are tournaments or guilds that you can join.
Just to give you an idea of a few of the uber-expensive cards, take a look at this recent purchase of Prince Julian at USD 3500.
Did you go to the link and see for yourself? I hope you did. And I hope that gives an overview of the game. I just love the game, and those interested can go to Splinterlands’ site and join. If you want a link to join, I will leave one at the end of the article, which you can use.
Scroll down, quick. 😊
Stonesplitter Orc | Strong Melee Attacker with a Weak Health
Prima facie, everything is likable about the Orc. It has an attack value of three coupled with a retaliate ability right from the beginning. First-time players would appreciate the advantage that the Orc provides in attacking the opposition. Besides, it comes with an armor that helps neutralize at least one attack from the opposition. Not bad in that sense.
But the only worrying factor is health. The Orc has a starting health of four. Of course, the lack of health is equalized when the Orc retaliates against attackers. However, the retaliate ability is activated only 50% of the time. So, if there is a lack of retaliating, then the Orc perishes even before doing substantial damage. How many would like that? Not many, I guess.
Anyway, let’s see the Orc in battle.
Stonesplitter Orc In Battle
When playing with the Orc, you are pretty much unsure if it should be placed in the first position or not. Maybe for some small mana battles the Orc can be right at the front, but it won't work for medium to large mana battles. The hard hitters of the opposition would take down the Orc even before it has a chance to retaliate, let alone attack.
The battle that we will be looking at is one with only the Melee attacker rule and 27-mana total. Besides, monsters lose their abilities. That means I will be using the Orc with no retaliate ability. It can’t be that bad knowing that the retaliate is activated only 50% of the time normally too.
So, let’s see how the battle progressed.
My choice for the battle was the Earth Splinter, while the opponent chose the Water Splinter. To shield the Orc early on, I put the Goblin Mech in the front while the War Chaang at the back. Since only melee attackers were used, the Chaang can undertake ranged attacks while the Mech carried on with its hard-hitting ones in the front. The Orc would more or less be non-attacking till it reached the front.
The opponent’s choice of monsters surprised me. The chosen monsters were the Kraken and the Serpent of Eld. Agreed, the Kraken has a solid attack, but the Eld would not attack until it reached the front. As such, the opponent’s choice of monsters had already lost him the game. Or was I being overconfident?
Let’s find out.
The Battle Begins
With my summoner taking away two armor from both the opponent’s monsters, the Eld was exposed. The Kraken did have one armor, but not for long.
The Mech’s first attack took out the armor while the Chaang took a swipe at its health. The Kraken would need one more attack to take out the Mech’s armor. But most certainly, its health would become half by that time.
The next round, the Kraken did inflict injury on the Mech, but the Mech and Chaang took it out before long. That bought the Eld to the front.
The Battle Races to Conclusion
With its first strike, the Eld took out the Mech. That brought our defending champ and the focus of our discussion to the front.
The Orc slammed the Eld out of the battle. With just about enough health left, the Eld sustained one attack from the Chaang. In return, the Eld took away the Orc’s armor. That’s when the game was over. The Orc did the honors with the last attack and put an end to the Eld’s misery.
Do I Use the Stonesplitter Often?
Actually, no, but that’s a personal choice. When I started playing Splinterlands, the Orc was not one of the monsters available to me. As such, my strategies were without it. However, when I did get it, I used it sparingly. That’s because most of my games were in the mid to large mana ones, and there, the Orc would be of not much use.
That said, I have come across battles where the Orc has been used amazingly well. Needless to say, I was on the losing side of such battles. That prompted me to try out the Orc, and I have done it now and then. I remember one battle where the opponent had a maxed-out Orc. That was a crazy battle as I saw the Stonesplitter’s second ability in action – enrage. Here is my word of caution – “never psych out an Orc to enrage it”. 😊. You will only live to regret!
Where Else Does the Orc Fit In?
The Orc’s only disadvantage is its health. Even the speed is good enough to be attacking at the very beginning. Having said that, any rule which allows the health to be up and running is a good one. Yes, the Health Equalizer rule is awesome for this monster. Imagine the Orc at its highest health and three attack value. Isn’t that a great monster to play with? You bet it is. 😊
Other places where the Orc plays an important role are the “melee attackers can attack from any position”, “sneak-and-snipe”, and the “opportunity” rules. In all of these three cases, the Orc can attack from any position, and with a potent attack value, it is worth the money. In fact, I have seen many such battles with the Orc forming a potent force at the back. And even if a monster hits the Orc, the chances are that a retaliate is activated. In that sense, the attack on the Orc is also equalized (if not neutralized) to some extent. So, yeah, there are avenues to use the Orc.
The last one is the low-mana battles. This is a no-brainer as the Orc would do well as a tank where the opponent’s monsters would also be of similar health. The only advantage for the Orc would be low-mana battles with any of the above rules. That would make the Orc super-duper-potent!
How Does the Orc Level Up?
The Orc has one of the best level-ups among the moderate mana group monsters. It gets a lot. Take a look.
That’s got to be one of the few monsters which get a substantial increase in all its stats. The already impressive attack value increases to five from three, the health increases to seven, the shield goes up to three, and the speed also increases by one. Now, if all that is not good enough, the Orc gets the enrage ability too. Phew!
Remember, a fully leveled up Orc still costs about six mana. For six mana, all those abilities are unparalleled in most monsters. In fact, there wouldn’t be many monsters with that kind of stats at six mana cost. Orc is indeed a good battle companion, therefore.
Stonesplitter Orc | Monster That Packs a Punch
Coming back to the initial question – do I use the Orc? Yes, and no. I have given reasons why it is a great companion under certain rules while I would hold it back in some other places. Of course, a leveled-up Orc is an explosive package. No problem using it in most cases.
My verdict is a bit split on the Orc, but then it is my strategies rather than the card’s ability. Maybe it is a trump card for some other players. So, yes, it is a good card that depends entirely on your strategy and game plan. Either way, have fun using the card if you wish to take it into battle.
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Image Courtesy: Splinterlands