By Jace Thomas– August 10, 2011
I’ve been meaning to master MonPoc since MonCon, where I met a lot of great people who were kind enough to teach me a lot about this great game. And I figured it’d be only fair to repay them for their time by trying to push my potential, and I’ve read Zach’s Mastering MonPoc series (and almost all of its’ responses) since day 1. I guess the first thing I should do is define “mastering”. I don’t intend, by any stretch of the imagination, to be the best MonPoc player ever. For me, it’s all about having fun, and by doing these blogs and furthering my game I only intend on doing so in the name of fun. I’m still very new at the game, and while I played a whole ton and enjoyed it at MonCon I’ve probably played less than 50 games total. Considering that the majority of those games were with completely different lists, I haven’t really had any solid practice with the game. It’s finally time for me to stop toying around with different monsters and get serious with just one. I figure after I serve my time with my chosen monster there will be plenty of opportunities to mess around with other monsters/factions. So I guess my goal for mastering MonPoc is to become more familiar with the game so that I can enjoy all the rich, competitive gameplay it has to offer without me stumbling over the rules or not being aware of which of my figures do what. In short, sand the rough edges of my newbishness away.
Choosing a Monster
Welp, I guess I have to kick this whole thing off by settling down with a monster, huh? I’ve been putting this off for far too long, but the time has come for me to be decisive. Any guesses as to what I’ve picked? Aw, who am I kidding, you read the title of the blog! Who’s that Pokemon?! Iiiiiiiit’s Vorgax! Ultra, to be exact – I’ve heard tales of the Mega form’s relative rarity, and the fully pre-painted version suits my fancy just fine.
I have several reasons why I chose this monster over others. While my all time favorite faction is without a doubt UberCorp, I’ve decided to put that on hiatus for a few reasons. The Now block factions are really really awesome, but I feel that without Series 6 they are incomplete. And if you don’t know, I just may be the biggest supporter of FAC pure there is. I just can’t stand splashing! Why ruin a perfectly crafted group of dudes by mixing them with others willy-nilly. It’s like getting peanut butter in your brake fluid. “And a random tornado elemental and a cthulu bat with wings and a sweet purple beetle held hands and strolled off into the sunset tra-la-la just because they have neato abilities that I’m jealous my faction can’t have, lalala!”
Anyways, back to the point – until Series 6 comes out, I don’t want to waste my time mastering a faction that will have more units/installations/monsters coming that will completely shake up my strategies. (it’ll also make it all the more awesome when Series 6 does come out, ala saving yourself for marriage) Also, as a relatively brand new player, I missed out on all the fantastic evolution of the game as the first 6 factions were born/built upon. I’d like to try and step into the shoes of a past MonPoc generation by playing around with an older faction, see what it was like without some of the kooky new abilities and stuff, and above all I really want to just avoid putting the horse before the cart.
I’ve chosen the Planet Eaters faction because I think they look awesome. Those shiny metal carapaces, fearsome ripped 16-pack abs, and those adorably fiendish shark grins I find myself drawn to. King Ghidora was always my second favorite monster… (and since there is no Hedorah monster, I guess I have to settle… D: ) I’ll definitely be playing FAC-pure, at least for a little while.. I know I’ll end up splashing eventually since I’ve played a couple games with FAC-pure Planet Eaters now, and BOY do their units.. have terrible destructive power. What’s the deal with that!? All of their units (save for the awesome chomper, explodohawk/mite) hardly deserve the AGN of destroyer!! And what is with their blasters, anyways?! The sculpts are freakin’ awesome, but where are all the boost dice? The abilities? “Fear me, I’m a constrictor, I have penetrator! Oh wait, with 2 A-die I have a problem hitting a DEF of 1, derp!” Lame. As much as I hate to admit it, there is a 125% chance of me splashing Savage Swarm heavily, but there is no way I will go out of AGN. It’s a matter of honor, after all!
I had a hard time settling on my monster – all the PE monsters are so cool, even Zorog! So I had to hold auditions, and the morpher made the cut. I decided that I really, really liked the look of the morphers (especially the barreller) and I almost took Space Pope – I mean, Xaxor – for his blue abilities since I really wanted to make the PE units more destroyer-ish, but then I realized that a more potential on a monster > more potential on units. I also kind of get the impression that he’s the most popular Planet Eater monster, and I’m sure he’s been played to death. Like I said, it’s all about fun, so why not play something that hasn’t been done over and over? Then while looking over my current figures, I suddenly thought about the current meta, and about how morphers are the coolest things ever now. If I decided to play the Planet Eaters morpher, it’d be tons of fun as I’d be able to play with a very nonstandard monster in the form of a morpher, increase my range of MonPoc knowledge by having to juggle four monsters laden with abilities, and also get some serious hands-on experience with morphers in regards to the meta. Also.. I kind of want to get better with morphers for when (if) they make an Ubercorp morpher so I can drop everything else like a hot potato and jump into action with a sweet headstart! And have I mentioned how fun to play the barreller is?! The Synapseapede can bite me, however. (hopefully through mastering Vorgax I will come to love that little red-headed step eater with all of his 4 DEF)
Guess I’d better suck it up and make a practice list. Oh, by the way – I made this list by looking through figures I physically own, to make things simpler for me. I don’t own one of every building, in fact I’m missing quite a few, and I’m sure there are some buildings out there I’m not even aware exist that would be perfect for my army, but I didn’t include them because I’m trying to start things simple. There are quite a few ingredients that go in MonPoc soup – it can really be a lot to wrap your mind around! But it really does all combine into such a wonderful entree.
2x Grunt Destructomite
1x Elite Destructomite
2x Grunt Belcher
1x Elite Belcher
2x Grunt Chomper
1x Elite Chomper
2x Grunt Constrictor
1x Elite Constrictor
1x Pacific Eye
1x Imperial State Building
1x Apartment Building
1x Newspaper Office
3x Electrical Power Plant
2x Oil Refinery
2x Comet Shard
1x Office Building
Okay, gosh, I know this is a terrible list but please bear with me, I’m trying to learn! And the only way I’m going to learn is by failing… but please, any pointers would be much appreciated! Especially on my city – I literally have no idea what I’m doing. Well, almost no idea – I brought the Pacific Eye to use as sort of a bargaining chip during city placement, so I could put it in front of an enemy power base and roll over crud with it for great P-dice and disruption. I brought the Newspaper Office and Apartment Building for the invisible A-dice they bring with their Discount and Intel skills (courtesy of Falgaia) which I think would be nice to start off securing since I have a morpher and should always be on the lookout for ways to start off securing something. And I brought the EPPs for their PURE DESTRUCTIVE POTENTIAL – MUAHA! Okay, I’ll admit they’re probably not as useful as I think they are, but I can blitz offa them with the barreller to get the P-dice unharmed, right? Also I could use them to potentially control where enemy morphers start the game, since no-one wants to take 2-4 damage on turn 1 from an EPP frying their morphers. All the other buildings are pretty much for brawling for P-dice or throwing the enemy into… yeah, not a great plan I know but it’s all I got. Whoopee!
As far as my units, I pretty much brought a well-rounded FAC pure PE army to play around with. I did skip on the scorchers, let me know if those are worth anything! I mean the chain reaction would be great to have, but I have a feeling that I wouldn’t really be able to actually hit anyone with their terrible attack stat, let alone start up a successful chain reaction.. maybe they’re good with ol’ Rogzor… Let me know what you think!
All right, I’ll wrap this up by discussing some of Zach’s recommended day 1 topics.
The overall strategy for your army and how you plan to win
Welp, I picked Destroyers for a reason, gosh darnit! I want to be able to function without a power base, so I will be aiming to destroy high-value buildings such as monuments or sweep up enemy units for P-dice. I also want to tear into the enemy monster ASAP, hopefully doing more damage to them than they do to me and steal a win. I’ll need those P-dice to do that, and I’ll also need to wait for the perfect time to strike. I’d like to, if possible, open with a 4-damage hit and keep the pressure on before the enemy can heal/react/whatever.
A handful of your favorite tricks and tactics
My more specific plan is to use the barreller as my spearhead, blitzing all over the place for P-die, and also summoning nasty chompers for cool 2-dmg brawls, using flank and weaken as support. I will be trying my very best to do 2 dmg on my unit turn, which shouldn’t be so difficult with my Planet Eater’s excellent debuffs. At the very least I can always use my Explodohawk to do a damage, which might be all I need to kill a form or stave off healing.
Top Strengths and Weaknesses of your army
Well, this one’s easy – my army’s all about the brawl, and has absolutely no blast potential. I mean the belchers are in there in case an easy target presents itself, but with no natural B-dice or helpful abilities besides indirect fire, I don’t really have much hope there. I hope to splash in some Cliff Hoppers, as Tony McKnight showed me how awesome they can be at MonCon – at least they can blast, and have a pretty good threat range with their huge movement. Also.. my brawlers suck eggs vs. air units – another reason I have the belchers, which are really the only way I can hit those flyers. And if the enemy monster has wings… well, I guess the Explodohawk is my only choice there on my unit turns, unless I can somehow get mega-lucky with my belcher squadron. Of course as in life itself, Mastering Monsterpocalypse is all about the journey, not the end result – I will engage in many glorious battles, lose a lot, and constantly be tweaking the list, hopefully with a little help from my friends. Now, off to the training gym to improve my technique..