Wednesday, December 30, 2015

Puzzle & Dragons: My latent tamadras allocation and some Arena 1.0 team latent setup links

Wrote this piece over at the Puzzle and Dragons Forum:

Edit: I've decided to remove the copy here so I don't have to update multiple copies of the article. Please refer to the link for the latest copy.

Tuesday, December 29, 2015

Puzzle & Dragons: New Year 2016 Gacha Cards and my thoughts on them

Cards and info can be found in this list:

Card art and REM gacha machine art:寵物圖檔更新-(20隻寵物&正月抽蛋機)

NYAmaterasu will be available in MP shop for 300K MP.

GameWith ratings: http://パズドラ

Game8 ratings:

Event-themed REM are usually just filled with color-swapping event-themed art card but as this timing coincides with the new type-killer and co-op awakenings, this REM provides a way for "early access" to those awakenings. 

The worst card is probably NYTengu. The only changes from the original Tengu was the sub-color which hardly mattered and the LS probably isn't good enough anyway. A more useful AS or more awakenings would have been so much better. Therefore, I think you are basically spending 5 stones for a NY themed-art of a descend-farmable boss.

Saturday, December 12, 2015

Puzzle & Dragons: Christmas Gacha 2015

New card info, Game8 and GameWith Card ratings link from the first post I created over at the PAD forum: Xmas Gacha 2015: 12/14 00:00JST ~ 12/27 23:59JST

It looks the same as most other event gachas like PAD Academy or Summer, nothing that is absolutely necessary and just some color change of normal cards. I think the event is mostly to get some Christmas themed cards and it is nice that we do not get any non-event themed cards this time!

Saturday, November 28, 2015

Puzzle & Dragons: Shonen Sunday Collab

Details I posted over at PAD forum:

I love the artwork of this collaboration as they are all from manga. I don't think there's anything particularly interesting in this collab gacha other than perhaps Ushio & Tora, the light combo leader. Inuyasha is quite similar to Vegito but for attackers type instead. Due to the rarity lineup, it is similar to the FF Collab in which the gold rate should be quite high and you can expect some of the 5* MP to sell for slightly lower MP price. Silver egg Kagome has an interesting DQXQ leader skill but being a silver egg, I don't see her getting much use other than to keep her at 10 cost for low cost dungeon.

Puzzle & Dragons: PAD BT Collab buffs

Continuing the backlog of Collaborations that I missed. The good thing about being late is that I am able to look back now to see which the cards ended up being used a lot. Tinnin got buffed to something similar to HxH Gon's leader skill but I didn't really see her rise in popularity and that is probably due to her sub requirement being dragons and healers. Nevertheless, her new leader skill is still a much better improvement over her old one. All the other cards received stat boosts but I was really looking forward to a evolution for Yo and Siegfried which we didn't get this time. Hopefully, when PAD BT Collab returns again, he will get one.

Tinnin's buff:

PAD BT Card stat buffs:

Game8 and GameWith Card ratings link from the first post I created over at the PAD forum:

Friday, November 20, 2015

Puzzle & Dragons: Fist of North Star Collab returns a 2nd time in Japan

A thread over at I created with info about the new cards and ufo:

I was away from my computer for about 2 weeks so this post came very late and the collab has long been over. It's always interesting to look back and see which cards from the gacha were really useful. I have only seen Mamiya used the most as a sub and is definitely a unique enough silver egg to roll for. The only other silver egg that I've seen used much after the collab was Shu, for the board randomisation, which can help clear locked orbs and the active skill is also generally useful in rainbow leader teams.

None of the new cards look outstanding other than the new gold egg, Yuria, who was also purchasable from the MP shop. She's basically the improved light version of Juggler. The UVOs both look strong but from GameWith's and Game8's tier lists, it seems Raoh is the more powerful one.

I'll be posting more on some of the other collabs that I missed while away as well as the latest Shonen Sunday Collab soon!

Thursday, October 22, 2015

Hearthstone: Warsong Commander Balance Change (Update with another post-nerf Patron Warrior deck)

It seems really long since we had one of this, the last nerf I remembered being for Undertaker if I'm not mistaken. I personally quite like Patron Warrior as I love combo decks but this pretty much spells the end of the deck. I've seen Patron Warrior win by controlling the board with just a lot of Patrons but it will be very susceptible to board clears. I wonder if there will be any adaptation possible to keep Patron Warrior as a deck.

The other effect of the nerf is that we lost a powerful and relatively cheap deck for clearing Warrior quests. Some of the alternatives will be OTK Warrior involving Raging Worgen ( or Ostkaka's new Charge Warrior: Hearthstone Subreddit link

Update: Surrender, a Hearthstone player from Korea, is playing this new version of Patron Warrior as reported by Hearthstone Top decks:

Update#2: Xixo with another post-nerf Patron Warrior deck:, the main changes was no Emperor Thaurissan which I agree as it's less of a combo deck but more midrange now and opting to use 2 Frothing Berseker which is still a powerful card that requires answering immediately when put on board.

Friday, October 16, 2015

Puzzle & Dragons: Halloween Gacha Card review

I created a thread over at the Puzzle and Dragons Forum and all the card/lineup information, as well as GameWith and Game8 card rating links are found there:

Here's my thoughts on the Halloween-themed cards in this gacha which has a really stacked lineup due to the addition of Archdemon Pantheon, Wizards, Fairy Tale series as well as Summer Event Gold egg Chibis:

Wednesday, October 14, 2015

Puzzle & Dragons: Japan's PAD Academy returns (Updated with Game8 & GameWith card rating links)

No much changes to the Gacha cards other than the buffs to Academy Lucifer and GAthena: It improves their leader skill but doesn't make them that much better by a lot. In particular, if GAthena's active skill usage was to boost attack instead of rcv, it will have been so much better.

This was what I wrote the previous time the event came around: I don't think much has changed since then. I noticed I didn't write much about Academy Lucifer last time and he is hardly seen other than in the previous Japan Dark Izanami Cup Beta Ranking Dungeon where players used him or his normal dark counterpart as a sub to use the active skill nuke to gain faster clears. (Note that using nukes in the upcoming Cauchemar Cup Beta Ranking dungeon will reduce score)

Game8 card ratings:
GameWith card ratings: http://パズドラ

Monday, September 28, 2015

Puzzle & Dragons: Japan version User Survey 28 Sept 10:00JST ~ 5 Oct 09:59JST

I posted a translation over at the PAD forums:

You can get a stone for doing it and I think it is a great way to vote for games/animes/mangas that do not have Collaborations yet.

Saturday, September 26, 2015

Revisiting Blackrock Mountain Heroic Mode... (Updated with Lord Victor Nefarius for full clear!)

Previously, I managed to clear the first BRM wing of heroic bosses before stopping.

I was browsing around Hearthstone sites and found out Icy Veins has some useful guides on Blackrock Mountain (BRM) Heroic Mode, created by Sottle. I followed them and managed to clear the specified boss so it was really helpful! I'll be compiling a list of the guides below that I used successfully from that site in this post.

Yu-Gi-Oh! ZEXAL World Duel Carnival temporary discount from 24 September to 21 October 2015

Nintendo Download: 24 September for North America Source: Nintendo Life

It drops from USD$19.99 to USD$9.99. This is even cheaper than the previous sale in January; USD$12.99.

If you are interested in getting it, check out this blog post I made earlier about it.

Thursday, September 24, 2015

Hearthstone: Gaara's rant on balance and world championship Subreddit thread

Interesting read over at the Hearthstone subreddit about game balance and tournament formats. I think the most important take away is about the balancing of the game. I think for a most card games like Magic: The Gathering or Yu-Gi-Oh, if a particular deck was dominating for a while, there will usually be some bans or card limit given to key cards of the deck. (Edit: For Hearthstone, cards will get nerfed) In the case of Hearthstone, it probably takes too long to happen and in the case of dominating Patron Warrior, no action has been taken so far...

Tuesday, September 22, 2015

Puzzle & Dragons: Japan version's Attack on Titan Collab (Updated 22 Sep 2015 with Game8's card ratings)

AoT Collab info in Japanese and Pictures:

AoT Gacha card info in Chinese:「進撃の巨人」抽蛋角色情報!

GameWith AoT Gacha card ratings:

Update (22 Sep 2015):
Game8 AoT Gacha card ratings:

Armin gets the highest score for the silver eggs which is closer to what most people are probably thinking. It's another good reference for people interested in the Collab Gacha.

For the silver eggs, Armin seems like the obvious good card out of them with that Phoenix Rider's kind of active skill but GameWith's ratings say otherwise, rating Shasha and Krista higher. I think Armin is still a good defensive card but the only slight issue is that for rainbow teams like A.Ra and A.Horus, although the color coverage is good, Armin is neither a God or Devil type so he does not get those Awoken Egyptian God's leader skill boost.

For the gold eggs, Eren seems the most useful, especially if you already have a lot of red attackers. His ultimate evolution leader skill is similar to Awoken Amaterasu while he also function as a red unbindable bind clearer sub with 2 red row awakenings. 

Mikasa's leader skill is interesting in that she is essentially a blue version of Awoken Shiva (no idea about the attack multiplier scaling to combo but it should be similar), however, there are very few blue attacker or machine types. You can alternatively use red attacker/machine subs instead and also choose to pair with Awoken Shiva leaders. She is a very good blue sub for most blue teams like especially Sarasvasti and Nut team.
Update (21 Sep 2015): I noticed Mikasa can work in a Mikasa system similar to Cloud System and posted this over a the
"Mikasa can form the Mikasa system that is similar to Cloud System:

Mikasa x 3/ Board changer or Bind clearer/ damage booster/ Friend leader Mikasa

Board changer can be Urd or Sunmer Urd, preferably Summer Urd, etc. Edit: Forgot about Awoken Karin.

Damage Booster can be the blue card from the weapon series, Claymore, or Gotenks, etc.

Bind clearer can be L/R Amaterasu, R/R Ame, Eren, Phoenix Ikki, Rozuel, etc. 
Edit: Forgot about PAD Academy Isis

When Urd is in the team, full skill bind resist. Use Mikasas' actives each turn to get a blue TPA and form enough combos for her LS with the rest of the board."

For those who are going to roll the Collab Gacha a lot, this is probably something to consider.

Levi seems to be the least useful gold egg as his leader skill favours attackers and machines, making him similar to Sephiroth. On the other hand, a board change active skill will probably always find use though and his board change is specifically goof for Light Kali and possibly dark combo leaders.

I think the collaboration Gacha slightly favours players with plenty of red attackers due to the 2 gold eggs, Eren and Mikasa. For silver eggs, Armin is not bad but definitely not Monster Hunter Baggi kind of level. There don't seem to be any must-have cards on the power level of FF/FFCD/DBZ/MH/HXH collaboration IMO. There is no harm in perhaps pulling the gacha machine once for collection but the collaboration gacha is more for fans of the Attack on Titan series.

Sunday, September 13, 2015

Puzzle & Dragons: Japan version's Batman Arkham Knight Collab

Collab Info & Gacha Rarity breakdown:

New UVO and Stat Changes:

Game8 Card Ratings:

GameWith Card Ratings: http://パズドラ

NA version got the collab earlier than Japan while Japan version was still having the Monster Hunter Collab. For the silver eggs, Catwoman is a useful coin farming leader while Harley Quinn and D/D Batman can be used for 10-cost limited dungeon if you do not have leaders for those uses yet. Evolved Harley Quinn is also an OK sub for the red Norn, Urd, but her poor awakenings mean she is only temporary until you get better subs from the normal Gacha REM. She also does not get skill-ups from the Collab dungeon and I think there are probably better choices to use your red pii-s on than her. Robin is like a mini Anubis so he is quite hard to use on normal boards but definitely a OK alternative if you do not have Anubis.

The gold egg Batmen are good dark subs, especially with their new UVOs providing more useful offensive awakenings. The new Leaderskills are good but hampered by the typing requirements so they might probably not reach HxH Collab's Gon or Killua level of power.

If you already have a coin farming leader and a low cost leader, I don't think there is a need to roll the Batman Gacha if you haven't done so before unless you are a fan of Batman. I managed to get Robin and D/D Batman silver eggs the previous time it was around and I don't find much incentive to roll the Collab Gacha again as they only added Harley Quinn. If you want Harley Quinn as a sub for Urd, it is probably better to roll the normal Gacha during a Godfest that has red carnival overlapping.

Friday, September 11, 2015

Puzzle & Dragons: Monster Hunter Collab

GameWith Card Ratings: link
Game8 Card Ratings: link

PAD Subreddit's with the translated collab new Changes info:

MH Baggi is a very sought after silver egg from the collab and one of the few collab silver egg that is worth using Pii-s on: It is definitely worth rolling the Collab Gacha machine for it. Check out the card ratings from GameWith and Game8 for the other cards you get from the machine to decide if you will keep or sell for monster points.

Friday, August 28, 2015

My pick of Hearthstone The Grand Tournament links to check out (Updated with new links about the Secrets Paladin deck)

The Grand Tournament (TGT) is now out and there is a lot of excitement about this expansion. I picked some of the links about it that are worth checking out below:

1) Reynad picks the most overpowered TGT cards to craft discussion on Hearthstone Subreddit:

Be sure to check out the PCGamer article link for his writeup on all the cards. I agree with most of the cards he has on the list but I prefer to take the list as cards to watch out for. It's still better to wait for the deck lists to get standardised before deciding if you need to craft them. The most important rule to remember is actually not to disenchant non-dupe cards you get from TGT until deck lists standardised. I made the mistake of disenchanting Imp-losion very early and have to re-craft them after not getting them from packs again.

The only cards that I'm tempted to craft if I can't get them in packs are Lock and Load because I can see the potential in that and also am interested in trying out a new kind of deck; spell-centric Hunter.

Update: I think Reynad's list does not have enough Shaman cards which I thought had quite a big buff with more totem support cards from TGT, so here is StrifeCro's Top 10 Grand Tournament Cards that will change the game Hearthstone Subreddit discussion for further reference:

Sunday, August 23, 2015

Puzzle & Dragons: Japan version's EVA Collab Gacha Card Info (Updated with Game8 card ratings link)

EVA Collab Ult Stats, Buffs/Changes @JP

GameWith Card ratings: http://パズドラ
*NEW* Game8 Card ratings:

Misato's UVO makes her a very good sub for red teams and is probably the best gold egg for the collab. Regarding skill up cards for the collab REM, only the 2 golds and 2 of the silver eggs, Shinji and Asuka are getting them which makes most of the silver eggs in the collab not that good. Silver egg Shinji is probably going to be the more useful silver egg to use as a sub while Asuka remains the same good low cost leader or red attacker leader to pair with Misato.

The thing about collab silver eggs in general for me is that, unless they have skill up cards available or if their AS is really unique and useful like Baggi, they most probably aren't going to see much use unskilled as there are most probably better cards to pii than them.

Unless you're a fan of Evangelion, I don't really think it is really worth it to roll this collab REM a lot as there isn't anything that is unique and powerful in it. Saving your stones, especially if you are non-IAP, for Godfest is probably a better choice.

Saturday, August 1, 2015

Puzzle & Dragons: Japan's Shinrabansho Collab Cards (Edited in latest Collab renewal with Game8 ratings link)

Update#5 (1 Aug 2015): New cards and evolutions at The silver egg cards with color resist awakening get an additional resist awakening each. GameWith has the card ratings for the Collab cards. I like the additional collaboration with Kapibara-san where you can evolved cards to get a branching evolution with Kapibara-san art style. After evaluating the teams that I have, I actually find it more worthwhile to roll in the normal REM during favourable Godfest combination for subs or better leaders so I will not be rolling Collab REM that much from now onwards. The normal REM also do generally give out more Monster Points in comparison too. Edit: Here's Game8's Shinrabansho Collab card ratings.

Update#4 (17 July 2015): I didn't use Kai, my silver egg roll, in my teams but he seems pretty good for Hathor as he covers dark while providing a x2 burst from the AS which is something I do not have for her team at the moment.

Update#3 (09 July 2015): It's been quite a few months and it seems like the other regions have gotten the collab. Looking back now, some of the cards that stood out for me as being mentioned once in a while are silver egg Shinra Sun God Apollo and gold egg Kiriko. Apollo is a pretty good replacement for Nim, as a Urd sub and I do regret not rolling more to try to get him since I have an Urd team. The gold egg Kiriko seemed to be mentioned as a sub for mono red teams once in a while. I hardly find any of the 3 gold egg leaders when checking through the 3 invader friends in the friend list but that's just my experience.

Update#2: I did my single roll and got Kai, the Dark/Light Devil/God silver egg. On closer inspection, he seems like a decent Light Kali sub with the damage enhance that should reach a lot of the team which is usually light heavy. The skill boost and skill bind resist is also always welcome and useful. The animation for the collab gacha machine has a slight change in animation as this time the magic stone that goes as well as a piece of wafer attached. The animation could have changed to be slower to allow us to see the wafer easier IMO though. (Edit: The silver eggs do not require evolving to the final form which is nice!)

Update: PAD Skyozora has the info on the dungeon cards and it turns out that all the collab eggs get skill up cards in the form of "cards" which is really so fitting if you read up on Shinra Bansho in the link below. Personally, I find that this promotes the gacha machine too as I sometimes find it a waste to feed away the skill up cards if I manage to amass quite a few, so it can encourage rolling the gacha.  Card 1984/85 is a a decent "poor man" version of Archangel Metatron with a longer cool down for the bind removal and heal active skill, nice HP and high RCV stats, while having the important 100 % bind resist awakenings. Judging by her evolution materials, she is probably a sub-boss or rare invade card though.

What is Shinra Bansho? It turns out they are a brand of chocolate wafer with collectible trading cards by Bandai. The collab is back this time with its own Gacha machine and the gacha card information is out at Puzzle Dragon X. Most of the cards feature the same art style of the Shinra Bansho product except the gold cards were illustrated by PAD staff and denoted with "another" in their names, which explains the difference in looks. I don't know too much about the history behind the Shinra Bansho characters but Kiriko and Asmodeus look just like they came from one of the PAD God series.

Overall, I think all the cards seem to have their use so there is probably no harm rolling for them. (Edit: None on the level of usefulness of the Battle Tournament Gacha Silver eggs though IMO) The silver eggs are good low cost cards with Apollo is basically like a Chinese God but without the full board change active. Most of the silver eggs also have attribute damage reduction and a nuke plus attack boost in their actives. Mebius is the only silver egg that differs in actives; having dark orb enhance with Change the World. His awakenings does however shoehorns him into dark orb enhance teams. Ever since the re-balancing of the game by Gungho where more cards are buffed to be more useful, I don't think there has been any active skills that were designed to only be useful situationally.

The gold eggs, are also quite good, although none are at the level of the Juggler understandably. Kiriko and Saiga are new color variations to the Norn Godfest exclusives with quite a few strong farmable subs including Ultimate evolution Goemon and Athena. Saiga also continues the "tradition" of collab cards getting skill-up cards in the collab dungeon. Asmodeus, on the other hand, has quite a few people labelling her as Devil Hathor and while she does not gain an RCV boost like Hathor, they probably are right to call her so. Her full board change active skill is very powerful as well and probably more useful than Hathor's gravity active IMO. I think she is definitely one card that will gain popularity in friend leaders. (Durga's in the upcoming Godfest as well, probably planned?, as she has great synergy with Asmodeus, using her as sub in the team)

There are a lot of good cards in the Gacha so I think it doesn't hurt to roll a little for collection as this is the first appearance of the Gacha too. None of the cards are essential, just like most collab gacha-s except the Juggler, but they mostly can be useful and if you score the gold eggs, they make for good leaders too. I'm definitely still saving most of my stones for the upcoming Final Fantasy Collab though.

Thursday, July 30, 2015

Puzzle & Dragons: Japan version's new Sengoku Gods Pantheon useful links and impression (Updated with GameWith's Sengoku Gods team templates)

- Sengoku God Info by PAD Skoyozora in Chinese

- Sengoku God Card Ratings by Game8 | GameWith respectively below

Sanada Yukimura (R/R)
Leader Score: B | 5/10
Sub Score: A | 8/10
Overall Score: 9/10 | 8/10

Mori Motonari (B/R)
Leader Score: B | 6.5/10
Sub Score: A | 7.5/10
Overall Score: 9/10 | 7.5/10

Ishida Mitsunari (G/D)
Leader Score: B | 7.5/10
Sub Score: A | 8/10
Overall Score: 9.5/10 | 8/10

Maeda Keiji (L/R)
Leader Score: B | 7/10
Sub Score: C | 6/10
Overall Score: 8.5/10 | 7/10

Akechi Mitsuhide (D/D God/Devil)
Leader Score: B | 5.5/10
Sub Score: A | 8.5/10
Overall Score: 9.5/10 | 8.5/10

- Game8 with sample team templates for Sengoku Gods

- GameWith with sample team templates for Sengoku Gods

This pantheon is essentially going to be mainly used for subs, except the Light Sengoku God, going by the ratings. I think it is hard to argue with that as cards with orb changing AS and good awakenings like row enhance generally are going to be good subs.

As leaders, I find the leader skill of Red and Dark Sengoku Gods to be a little peculiar. Red and Dark probably should get orb enhance awakenings instead of row enhance to synergise better with their leader skill even though their active skill gets orbs enhanced. It is going to be hard to fit in subs with enough orb enhance and row awakenings to their teams. Then there is the issue of activating their leader skill along with rows; you'll need to match 5 with an enhanced orb, a row or more and combos to spike. One thing worth noting regarding their active skills is that they combo perfectly with Gadius and Typhon's board change to create a two colour board of their main orb and hearts. Edit: Only the Dark Sengoku God combos with Typhon's board change for a board of dark orbs and hearts.

The Blue and Green Sengoku Gods seem to be better leaders and they are reflected in the GameWith ratings. They obvious do not have the issues like the Red and Dark ones as I stated in the previous paragraph as they have different leader skills. They also have potential to form "system" teams like Cloud although those will be quite "expensive".

The Light Sengoku God's leader skill is interesting. I find it easier to visualise the leader skill as the 3 Kingdom God, Da Qiao & Xiao Qiao's leader skill with a 6 combo additional damage component. I think the active skill is a little weak so his going to mainly be used as a leader. Edit: As pointed out by Puzzle and Dragons Blog, orb refresh active skill is good against the locked orb mechanic.

Friday, July 24, 2015

Puzzle & Dragons: Japan's Hunter x Hunter Battle Allstars Collaboration REM: Juggler, meet your new clown friend (Updated with Ging Redemption instruction and Gon, Killua buff link)

I had a Killua account from the first time PAD had the Collab but have since discontinued it as I find the play-style a little boring. It's nice for it to return as my current account that I'm playing had not roll the Collab REM or clear its dungeon yet.

This time round there were some nice updates to the the REM gold eggs, especially Gon's ultimate evolution who seems more viable with the Leader Skill change. Gon's ultimate evolution Active Skill is also Vegito which can be useful against Extreme King Metal Dragon invades and along with Gon's good awakenings, he makes for a pretty solid green row team sub.

The silver eggs were buffed as well but I don't think anyone stand out other than Kurapika for the 4 turn delay Active Skill. Leorio is the silver egg that got an ultimate evolution and while he is suppose to be used to clear binds, his Active Skill only offers bind recovery for 1 turn which is not very useful. Check out astalotte's translation on the card updates from the PAD subreddit and her other post about the new cards

The new Gold egg, Crazy Clown, Kite looks close to the power level of Juggler at first sight. The other one, Ging Freeccs is a card you can get if you also play the Hunter x Hunter Battle Allstars mobile game and more information on how to redeem should be released later. It will probably be something similar to the Fat Chocobo promotion for the FF Collab.

Card Ratings

I thought Kite was going to get S rank like Juggler for Game8's tier list but the tier list has not been updated while his individual page listed him as A+. Maybe it might change again once players get to try him out and I still think he is a very powerful leader.

Overall, I don't think the Collab REM is worth rolling. The best cards are gold and they are all mainly leaders with Gon and Kite being the best IMO. As always, gold eggs are probably very hard to get so if you are not lacking in leaders, I think you can probably skip it. Do still check Game8's tier list before the Collab ends if Kite ends up in S rank and see if you will to try rolling for him. With the new Monster Points(MP) system, the silver eggs can always be sold for 3K MP if you have no use for them.

UpdateHow to redeem Ging post by kyot from Puzzle Dragons Forum. Gon and Killua leader skill got buffed and their attack multiplier should be about 5 now with additional HP and RCV base multiplier added respectively. Information at PAD subreddit by astolette.

Tuesday, July 21, 2015

A F2P-player-who-bought-the-2-Adventure-modes's current Hearthstone Decks as of July 2015 (Added an update on Paladin, Shaman and Hunter)

I've gone back to playing more Hearthstone since the release of Blackrock Mountain Adventure. I have only spent money on the 2 Adventure packs so far and used gold mainly for packs. After trying arena for a while, I decided that I am not doing well enough to justify the time spent there when I could have just bought packs and be done with it.

I probably played for at least a year now and did manage to amass quite a number of cards from occasional playing to earn coins for packs. I also got lucky and had about 5-6 legendaries opened from pack so far but most of them were used in competitive decks anymore or only appeared in a deck list once in a blue moon. Thus, I dusted most of them for useful epics instead. Most of the "budget" decks from the past, like old school Zoo, are no longer viable and you'll probably need some epics for each class now in deck building as the game has already progressed quite a bit.

I enjoy playing a variety of decks and was able to build a competitive deck each for all the classes with the cards I have, using only legendaries from Adventure Modes. Here are the decks I am able to netdeck:

Saturday, July 18, 2015

Magic Duels: Origins iPhone 6 Plus Impressions, useful links and a tip (Update post with comments on Story Mode, Duels Subreddit link and a link to decks)

I've played for quite a bit and unlocked all the game modes but I don't know if I want to continue more, especially on the iPhone 6 Plus. The game seem designed for a bigger screen like perhaps should be played on at least a tablet screen because even with the bigger iPhone, the 6 plus, the cards are just way too small on the screen. It is a very bad experience while playing, viewing the collection   and creating decks. My phone also got pretty warm while playing and the battery level also drop quickly. These are all common points raised in forums when talking about the game.

I've also read some complaints on forums about having to play skill quests which are like tutorials to earn more gold when the players probably already know the game rules and mechanics. However, I didn't mind them as I treat them like simple puzzles to solve and free gold is always very welcomed in a freemium game. The only issue for me is that they seem to pop up out of nowhere so you don't know how to go about "triggering" them, making you think you've somehow still missed out on some free gold.

With all the issues on iPhone aside, I think it is the best digital version of Magic that I've played so far. (Disclaimer: I never tried Magic Online) It is a good implementation of the free-to-play model with no cards gated behind a paywall that I know of so far. The game can probably last for a long time as long as more card expansions gets added and that definitely won't be a shortage of them because the CCG has tons of them. If you are a Magic fan, I definitely recommend trying out the game... but just don't try it out on iPhones.

App Store link
(Compatible for iPhone 5s, 6 and 6 Plus, iPad mini 2 and above, iPad Air and above. Check out the App Store page for compatibility information.)

Useful Links
- Here's the Magic subreddit thread where people are discussing about the game.
5eNintendan brought up 3 interesting points about the game:
"Just so people know what they are getting into.

  • There will be no Cross play/buy from IOS, Xbox, or PC. If you spend money on one and want to play on another, get ready to start from square one.
  • There's still card limits, you want more than two of the same rare, welp sorry can't happen.
  • The game doesn't have the full Origin set and might never have it. If you had plans to look at or test every new Origin card, well that won't be possiable. I remember reading only 80% of Origins cards made it into the game. Many of the other cards added are just fillers for more deck options."

- Full album of Duels: Origins cards from Lexx20 from the Magic DotP subreddit. A comment by Lexxx20 in the opening post:"I'm pretty sad we don't get Demonic Pact, Dark Dabbling or Dark Petition. No Eyeblight Massacre, Nightsnare, Touch of Moonglove and Tormented Thoughts. Was looking forward to try them." I googled them all and they are quite interesting cards but also all black... I wonder if other colors also have interesting cards that are not included in the game...

- I don't have much tips to provide but I think it is a good idea to play through the entire story mode first to build up gold and buy as many packs as possible to expand your card pool before attempting the daily quests/other modes with logically better decks because of increase card choices. The story mode decks are provided so you are basically limited only by your skills and luck with card draw. Of course if you are IAP-ing to buy packs, your experience might differ...

I initial thought I will stop playing after completing the story mode but I'm now at Lilliana's second part of the story but will stop there. Starting from Jace's story, I've began to get reminded of the frustration of Hearthstone Adventure Mode Heroic Mode matches and that is definitely not a good sign. There are complaints over at the new Magic Duels: Origins subreddit:
- "Stuck on Lilliana's story pt3"
- "Is it just me or are the campaign battles basically a game of..."

I also started noticing that the pop-up choice for spell targeting has very bad unintuitive color choices. While waiting for the player to choose a target, the "confirm" button is dark grey while the "finish" button is white which makes the "confirm" button look disabled and "finish" button looking like the button to tap. When the player taps a target, the "confirm" button remains dark grey with only a highlighted border around it. I missed some initial targeting on the phone screen and wasted some spells because of tapping wrongly, adding to the overall frustration when playing Story Mode.

- petercal with sample decks you can build using the starter pack cards you get initially from the No Goblins Allowed forum thread. Other posters shared are a few more other deck lists there too.

Friday, July 17, 2015

Puzzle & Dragons: Japan's Bikkuriman Collab's 3rd Revival (Update with link to card ratings by GameWith and Game8)

Here's the a link to my previous post on this Collab.

PAD Skyozora with the information on the evolution to some of the cards in Chinese. astalotte with the translations in a PAD subreddit post.

The best card in the Collab REM is still Echidna Rococo as a sub but overall, I don't think there is much incentive to roll if you're non-IAP, except perhaps to get a REM card for collection, even with the addition of 4 skill-up cards available in the collab dungeon: Echidna Rococo, Black Zeus, Heraclodin and Shaman Ra.

I've never used the silver egg rolls I got previously: Hera Maria and Shaman Ra. I have, on the other hand, used the yamaP card to cover dark on a Hathor or Light Kali team and even managed to max skilled him with king gold dragons. His ultimate evolution leader skill is hilarious and I will probably farm an extra copy for that.

Update: GameWith and Game8's card ratings for the Collab REM cards in Japanese.

Thursday, July 9, 2015

Magic Duels: Origins out now for iPads AND iPhones!

App Store link
(Compatible for iPhone 5s, 6 and 6 Plus, iPad mini 2 and above, iPad Air and above. Check out the App Store page for compatibility information.)

I was pleasantly surprised that the game is playable on iPhones as the earlier information only talked about iPads. I'll post my impressions on iPhone 6 Plus soon! Magic Duels is the card game, Magic: The Gathering, made into a free-to-play version where you can earn gold to buy packs in the game or spend money to buy the coins and get the packs faster.

Tuesday, June 23, 2015

Puzzle & Dragons: Japan Duel Masters Collab card notes (Updated #3 for Bolmeteus' updated LS)

It's not the Yugioh, Duel Monsters, collaboration that I hoped for but at least it is a Collectible Card Game (CCG) so perhaps there might be a chance for one with Yugioh in the future? The collaboration  card information is out at and one of the things that caught my eye was the skill up cards for the 2.0 Rider Series (except the dark rider). Phoenix Rider turned out to be quite a useful sub, having that Monster Hunter Baggi-like defensive ability, and I think those who have him will definitely look to max skill him here. Be sure to check through the dungeon drops as there are quite a few 10 cost cards in there that might be useful for low cost dungeons. On to the Collaboration Egg Machine cards! (English names are referenced from astalotte's subreddit post on the Collab REM info)

Update: Game8's card ratings for the Collab eggs. I completely agree with the assessment with the minor difference being that I think Romanoffis good but Game8 rates is even more highly. Individual sample teams for the gold cards are linked below.

Silver Eggs

Sunday, June 21, 2015

Magic Duels: Origins, a F2P Digital Magic: The Gathering game coming in July 2015

Wizard announces Magic Duels: Origins

This is something I've always wanted long ago but I probably won't be trying due to time constraints as this is another F2P game which will take a lot of grinding to get the cards you want. It's also not coming to Macs, iPhones or a console that I own so I will only consider trying on the family iPad after checking out the cards it have. Here's a gameplay trailer by IGN posted through the official Magic website.

Saturday, June 20, 2015

Puzzle & Dragons: Follow-up post on the Japan's Saint Seiya Collaboration

I was away from my computer and missed out on writing about the recent Saint Seiya Collaboration so here's a follow-up on the new and updated cards.

New cards listed on

UVO Aquarius Hyoga
He is really similar to Yo & Siegfried in leader skill and will probably have similar fate as him; I doubt anyone will be leading with him and with his active skill affecting only Balanced type, his usage is really niche. He is a nice sub for Yo & Siegfried nevertheless. The biggest improvement for this UVO for me is the artwork as he went from cartoonish to manga-ish.

Friday, June 19, 2015

Heroes of the Storm: Some of my tips for new players starting out and thoughts on the game (Updated with Impressions)

I don't usually write about Multiplayer Online Battler Arena (MOBA) because I try to keep this blog focused on Card games and puzzles. However, there is a cross-promotion of sorts between Heroes of the Storm (HotS) and Hearthstone to get an exclusive card back for Hearthstone. You need to reach level 12 for the HotS account in order to score the card back for the corresponding Hearthstone account and there are definitely some tips you can research a bit in order to try to reach it faster. HotS is currently in open beta so everyone can start playing the game now.

Some of the most important tips are from Skill for fast account levelling. Generally, you want to to play Quickmatches and party up with friends for the bonus experience. When you start the game, there is an option to find party at the main screen. Be sure to friend the party members for the bonus. If you are willing to spend money, then getting a stimpack will make the process even faster. In addition, you can get a Wonder Billie mount (Edit#3: and icon portrait) if you make any purchase during the HotS beta, which is right now.

Sunday, May 24, 2015

Puzzle & Dragons: Hello Kitty/Sanrio Collab returns in the Japan version (Minor update to Melody)

This collaboration is returning for the second time after quite some time and it'll be the first time I'll be taking part in it for the Japan version as I was on an old NA account the first time it appeared. This update wasn't very interesting for me as there don't seem to be any new cards while the old cards got minor changes in the form of buffs for active skill cool-downs and the gold eggs getting more awakenings but no changes in skills with the ultimate evolution.

The silver eggs mostly serve as low cost leaders, although I'm guessing it will be hard to find other people running the same ones. The most useful ones IMO are Melody and Kuromi with Melody making into green teams, like Osiris', because her active delays and enhance which is really useful, while Kuromi is a shield breaker for devil teams. The Gold cards mostly serve as leaders with Pompompurin also being used as a sub for his active skill enhance for light cards. Princess Valkitty, on the other hand, could pair with and/or use Cloud(s). I do not recall seeing her used as a sub most of the time probably because her delay is only 1 turn plus a lack of farmable skill-up card for her.

Following the trend of recent collaborations, there should be skill-up cards in the collab dungeon for the collab REM cards but none was announced so far. The dungeon is great for Fruit Dragon skill-ups and the rare invade Kittyn & Mimmyna is a good replacement for Idunn & Idunna for mono blue teams and also Yo & Siegfriend's team because she is balanced.

In conclusion, all the card artworks are really cute and if you are a Hello Kitty fan or just like cute things, you definitely don't want to miss this. I don't think there are a lot of useful or attractive cards in this so I'll probably just roll once.

Friday, May 15, 2015

Puzzle & Dragons: My thoughts on the latest Gungho Collab Pal Egg Machine Cards (Updated#3)

Update#3: I realised the machine has arrived for the English version and it includes the latest card that was added to the Japan PEM: Yukari. I have the card and never got around to using her. Her low CD will be very useful for leaders that require active skill activation to burst but being a silver egg, I don't think I will consider putting her into my teams. She's like poor man's version of Cerberus Rider. I have the complete set of Gungho Collab PEM cards but didn't use them at all other than Archer, which I kept at the original base form for low rarity to S-rank a dungeon once. I only managed to get Pianis the last time the PEM returned in Japan (probably 3rd to 4th appearance) to complete the set. I think she's probably the best card in the set and a leader that will see use.

Update#2: Full information for 3 and 4 stars are out at PAD Skyozora. Updated their section.

Update: The 3 and 4 stars cards have evolution versions which are not revealed yet. The art can be seen at PAD Skyozora. I don't think it matters that much due to their active skill being pretty much "locked in" but will have a look again and update this post when we get more information.

It's really nice to have more usage for pal points other than trying for rare evo materials and we have another Pal Egg Machine with new cards this time round. The new cards will be joining the mini three kingdom heroes that I wrote about previously: Mini-heroes of Three Kingdoms Friend Pal Egg Machine cards thoughts.

Official information and pictures of the cards from Gungho's website
Pad Skyozora with the Chinese translation
Puzzle Dragon X has the information on the 2 6-stars but not on the other cards yet at this time of writing


Arthur from Divine Gate

Wednesday, May 13, 2015

Puzzle & Dragons: Thoughts on the new Rider Series for Japan version (A new edit note for Kraken Rider)

Stats, active skills and awakenings information are out at Puzzle Dragon X

When they were first announced, I thought they were going to be improved version of the Mythical Beast Series, maybe something on top of the orb enhance during skill activation. Although that may be a little boring, it will definitely be more useful than what was announced IMO. These new riders all get unique active skills that are mostly defensive save for Griffin Rider while Cerberus Rider get a weird 99 fixed damage attack at 2 turns cool-down. They all get identical awakenings with the row enhance for their respective colour and double two-prongs which are nice but I think they are let down by their active skills with Griffin Rider being the exception. Their leader skills are similar to the Norn/Grimoire series but I don't think people will likely lead with them. In terms of overall design,  I actually find the previous released Warriors Series better.

Phoenix Rider

Monday, May 11, 2015

Puzzle & Dragons: A look at the Japan's Battle Tournament Collaboration Egg Machine Cards (Update with a note on Leona)

PAD BT Collaboration is back at this time of writing and as I have not written about it yet although it has already returned for quite a few times, this post will be about the cards you get from their egg machine. There are quite a lot of useful silver egg subs in this pool that are skill-able, so it is definitely worth rolling a few times for. For additional reference, here's GameWith with the card ratings. The artwork is really cool and one of my favourite series, with the human characters next to the PAD creatures making them like Shaman King or Pokemon.

I'm curious about their English name conversion as well as some of their sex as I can't really tell from their artwork but I manage to find the information here from their CV cards at Inner World. I'm going with the English names from that site as well. The character cards can be found on the Official website as well.

Silver Eggs

Sunday, May 10, 2015

Puzzle & Dragons: My notes on the Japan Final Fantasy Collab Rare Egg Machine cards (Added an edit Zidane's active skill)

**Below post is based on 1st Collab of FF. A post on the update to the FF collab can be found here **

It's finally here; the Final Fantasy Collaboration on the Japan version of Puzzle & Dragons! The rare egg machine card information is out at PuzzleDragonX. There are no cards this time that are on the level of the Juggler but some color types do get new leader skill play-style which is good. All of their active skills also reduce cool-down of other active skills by 1-2, an interesting new mechanic. Although I don't think it helps against skill bind, it's effect is close to a delay active skill and it will be  useful against a boss like the PAD Academy Hera-Ur, who increases your active skill turn by 2. The effect is also great for the awoken 1.0 Egyptian Gods leader skills.

Silver cards (I'm assuming all those that have a cost of 20)

Quite a useful light sub with versatility to go to either row-enhance or two-prong teams; all his awakenings are useful. His unconditional leader skill also makes him a good leader for fast low level dungeon farming. Overall, a good card to have.

Monday, May 4, 2015

Puzzle & Dragons: New Weapon Series in Japan Version (Updated#2 with YouTube video links)

Source: Translation by Madao over at Puzzle & Dragons forum

They have nice stat, great awakenings and beautiful artwork IMO but having them all be attacker type and with active skill boosting attackers only kind of limits their team options by a lot, not to mention that their color change is already not very synergistic as most teams usually just want to be mono-colored. I'm not sure if their active skill only changes their main color but even so, only the blue one, Claymore, will benefit in Urd, Theurgia and Gotenk teams. (Edit: plus the light one, Kopis, for Ars Nova teams.)

Their introduction in the Murakore Festival will also feature the removal (temporary for the festival period only?) of light valkyrie, fire, water and wood Golems from the Egg Machine (Source in chinese by PAD Skyozora) although I personally prefer Vampire or Gigas over the former as she is at least a descend drop with a certain degree of difficulty. I rather get the featured valkyries over the new weapon series if I were to roll in it though.

Update: The leader skills information are out. (Source: Puzzle Dragon X) The leader skills just doesn't make much sense right now IMO. I really think their sub-colour should be the colour the active skill changes into and when activated, do a swap of the colours, so they work better with their own leader skill. I'm guessing that perhaps it will eventually be that and the developers are still creating the animation and effect for a proper swap of the main and sub-type colour during skill activation.

Update#2: I was wrong about their usefulness as leaders. Their teams basically consist of subs that are their changed colour and mostly focused on two-prongs. It doesn't matter that their leader skill do not boost their own main colour, they are a team of 3.5x attack multiplier when above 50% for subs and a 5.25x attack multiplier when above 50% with their low cool down skill activated for the entire team minus one of the leader if you are pairing with the same leader. They are actually pretty strong!

I was able to find YouTube videos of them except for Kopis (Light) but he should work similarly to Claymore (Blue). Masamune's (Green) and Zeihander's (Dark) teams are probably harder to form as there are fewer blue attackers.

Shotel clearing Paradis of the Holy Beasts by Kui 34: YouTube link

Claymore clearing Thoth & Sopdet Descended by M パズラー: YouTube link

Masamune clearing Dragon Ball Collab 2 by SABER Channel: YouTube link

Zweihander farming Red Mechdragon by Kosuke of AppBank: YouTube link

Friday, May 1, 2015

Puzzle & Dragons Z Super Mario Edition Demo impressions

The demo is currently out for Nintendo 3DS at the North America eShop. There are 2 short game modes available with 2 team choices each; one introduction mode (presumedly easy mode) and an expert mode. Both modes start off with an explanation on how to play and it is worth going through again as there are some new gameplay stuff and controls compared to the mobile version.

The biggest difference is the Mario theme, being able to use a stylus, if you don't already use it on the phone version, and 3D stereoscopic graphics. The time limit to move the orbs seem shorter but it is probably due to me getting use to the time increase awakenings on my teams on the mobile version.

I was looking forward to the game but after trying out, I kinda lost interest as it is pretty much the same game as the mobile version of Puzzle and Dragons. I thought there will be a difference with using the stylus and there sure is, as you do not get your finger blocking the view but I'm used to using my fingers to move orbs. The iPhone retina graphic is also noticeably better although the 3DS version has animated enemies.

I was hoping for a collaboration dungeon or rare egg machine for the mobile game but since the Japan version was already out on 29 April 2015 and there wasn't any news or announcement of Mario characters, I guess there won't be any. There is a lot of time invested in the mobile version as well as the daily playing involved for me so I do not see myself picking up this 3DS version at all. On the other hand, it is definitely something for non-PAD players to check out, especially puzzle game lovers.

Puzzle & Dragons: Reco's Tutorial on Board setting up

Reco SFs YouTube video link

The video is about one hour long and is in Chinese. There was some English subtitles at the beginning but it stopped after a while while I was watching, so I'm not sure if it is still currently being added in. His PAD videos of dungeon clears are very impressive and if you watch his live Twitch stream, he really moves the orb around insanely fast with no speed up in video involved. He seems to be able to solve each board very quickly and with the maximum combo-s.

Wednesday, April 29, 2015

Puzzle & Dragons: How to use Cloud from Japan Final Fantasy Collab (Update with another video link)

It turns out the weak base 1.5x multiplier to attack doesn't matter at all for Cloud's team, when used on Descends, as the ideal team will be using an active skill just about every turn. Most of the teams you can find on YouTube now of Cloud leading has a minimum of 3 Clouds including the friend leader Cloud. The basic idea is to loop through the Cloud active skills and always have an active skill up among your subs and Cloud. It looks really strong but you'll need to get at least a few Cloud and max skill them which might be hard for non-IAP players.

Check out Cloud videos by searching YouTube for "クラウドpt" filtering to the latest dates. PAD Sasuke has a video where he clears the current Challenge Dungeon Level 10 but his team is all +297 egged. Update: Kosuke of AppBank using a similar team to Sasuke, from a discussion at subreddit.

Tuesday, April 28, 2015

Street Fighter Puzzle Spirits Impressions

I found out that the game was out on iOS while updating Puzzle & Dragons and seeing it on the front page of the Japan App Store. I checked out videos on the game back in January before and wasn't impressed but I decided to give it a try anyway.

The additional data download when you first open the app took quite a while but I was using my mobile phone network. During the account setup, I actually tapped too fast and skipped entering my name and the game accepted the "Enter your name" words in Japanese as my name! It would have been much better to leave that field blank so users will not make my kind of mistake. Later, while I was checking out the "friend leaders" that you can select before battle like Puzzle & Dragons, I found at least one more person who has the same name as me on 2 occasions. It was quite hilarious to see that!

I tried to search around settings to see if I could change the name but couldn't find any options so I guess I'm stuck with it. The overall user interface seems more complicated not as intuitive as Puzzle & Dragons so without someone translating, it is easy to get lost. I do manage to play a few games to experience the gameplay. You mainly tap on colour orbs to form matches with it neighbours and the orb will change to a fireball like icon. You then can try to line up 2 neighbouring fireball orbs of the same colour to form a rainbow orb and clearing 2 rainbow orbs that are neighbours will result in a special mode where you can make as many moves as possible within a limited time.

I think there is some strategy involved in trying to get the rainbow orbs to line up and not just mindless clearing of colours but it is IMO not as complicated as the puzzle aspect of Puzzle & Dragons. I am not going to continue further with the game, not because of the funny name bad start, but because I won't have time for another freemium game after Puzzle & Dragons and Hearthstone. If you are a Street Fighter fan or like puzzle games, do give it a try as it is something different.

Only available on the Japan App Store: link

Friday, April 24, 2015

Hearthstone Blackrock Mountain Heroic Modes: An update on my lack of progress

I actually wanted to avoid reading any guides and come up with my own strategies to take down the heroic bosses from the second week onwards but Diablo 3 Season 3 started and I spent most of my time in that game instead! As such, I won't be attempting the heroic bosses from week 2 onwards.

I find that the Class Challenges do offer a clear strategy against 2 of the bosses that they feature. As I played, I realise there do seem to be Epic and Legendary cards that make the bosses easier. They are important to use if you do not want to spend too many tries and time against the bosses. I don't think it is worth the time to challenge this mode with my limited cards but TommyJTheGamer has guides on how to take down the bosses using mostly basic cards on the Hearthstone subreddit.

Tuesday, April 14, 2015

Puzzle & Dragons: Rerolling and account swapping is going to get harder for non-jailbroken iPhone devices with iOS 8.3

9To5Mac reporting that iOS 8.3 blocks access to file transfer apps like iFunBox, iExplorer, etc

I've just tried it out and couldn't access the folders of Puzzle and Dragons. Thankfully, I've already settled down on one account. Although this change is great for the security of iOS devices, it means you can't reroll a new account quickly (deleting data48 and data56 files using the file transfer programs) or swap around multiple accounts. (again, replacing data48 and data56 files using the file transfer programs)

Friday, April 10, 2015

Puzzle & Dragons: Japan's PAD Academy Rare Egg Machine Cards (Updated with edit about Scholarship Student, Isis)

Update: My 3 rolls were mini Amaterasu, mini Pandora and Discipline committee member Athena(!). I was extremely lucky to get Athena and studying the options for her evolution, I would have preferred for her attacker and healer type to be swapped. The spectacle version is supposed to be the "unique" one and going from a healer to an attacker with high RCV will definitely be more fitting. Green also has tons of attackers with double two-prongs while the support for green healers is definitely not enough. For example, Ultimate Evolution Sun Quan has the healer buff but his main colour blue is off.


This rare egg machine is really similar to the recent Christmas Gacha last year so it is bound to draw a lot of comparisons. PAD Skyozora has the full information in Chinese, the leader and active skills are the same as their counterparts so the changes to look out for are the awakenings and the stats
which can be seen from the pictures.

I'll jump right into my comments for the cards:

4-stars Silver cards: We get the mini Hero pantheon along with Isis and Amaterasu this time. They are all similar to the mini Chinese Gods (especially the Heroes with the same awakenings) and cap at level 70. Isis and Amaterasu actually have useful awakenings which synergies well with their bind removing active skills so they can be useful subs even though their stats are low. For the Heroes, the only particular useful ones will be Yamato as a low cost leader replacement for Fire Sprite, Parrot red fairy (Edit: I forgot the red fairy's leader skill is different from Yamato's so you'll need a friend mini Yamato for low cost descends) and Pandora as a sub for un-evolved Juggler teams for low cost dungeons like Gaia Descended. (Edit: If you have the regular versions, these can serve as expensive skill-up cards too)

5-stars Gold cards: Regular Heroes and dark Chester. While these are at 3x rates, I think the dark Chester will drop more as it is not part of a God pantheon. It is still 3x the rarity of the cards so don't expect to get the regular Heroes easily. In the Christmas Gacha, I was hoping for a regular Chinese God as it was also 3x but gotten one of the Wizard series girls instead. (Those were also at 3x) Dark Chester do has his use as a skill bind resist sub and this egg machine event will probably be a good time to get him.

6-stars Gold cards: The two remaining mini-s for this event: Mini Chiyome and Red Odin. They both have triple two-prong awakenings and can probably go into red teams like Krishna or Urd teams who are using Red Valkyrie and Awoken Hinokagutsuchi and are already very powerful. I think mini Chiyome definitely has a spot in red teams compared to mini Red Odin who loses 2 skill boost awakenings which is actually an issue IMO as it makes him less useful compared to the regular Red Odin even with the triple two-prongs.

7-stars Gold cards: These all have very nice artwork IMO and will definitely be useful as they are very similar to their regular counterparts. However, I don't think they are must-haves. Isis, as a leader, looks flexible for sub choices but in most descend dungeons, you'll want to focus on one type to gain more from the active skill type boosts. Santa Kirin seems better when compared as Kirin is light type at the very least and has more awakening skills right from the start. Athena's "slight artwork and type change from evolving" feature is really cool though! Edit: Isis is a pretty good sub to deal with binds because she covers dark with her sub colour. You can put her into colour combo leader teams like Light Kali, Yuna, Kenshiro, etc.

In conclusion, the useful cards IMO are the 7-stars all the gold cards (including the regular Hero gods and Chester), especially mini -Chiyome (more so if you have a red team), silver eggs like the mini -Yamato, -Pandora (Edit: If you have an unevolved Juggler), -Amaterasu and -Isis. Getting any of them is probably useful for your box and with the high amount of silver cards among them, this rare egg machine should definitely be worth rolling at least a few times.

Hearthstone: Nomodogan's Grim Patron Warrior

Grim Patron is a really fun card from the 1st wing of Blackrock Mountain and most people try to fit him into Warrior decks. Nomodogan has a list written in the Hearthstone subreddit that got to top 10 legend in the North America server with explanations on his card choices and guide on how to play. I've looked at a few Grim Patron Warrior decks before and he doesn't use some of the cards other people play but it seem to work well for him. This might be the "base" deck for Grim Patron Warrior decks to build around from so it's a great reference!

Friday, April 3, 2015

Hearthstone: Decks I used to beat Blackrock Mountain 1st Wing Blackrock Depths Heroic Mode (Update#5 with more 1st wing Heroic Mode Guides from subreddit)

A discussion on the Heroic mode can be found on the Hearthstone Subreddit where strategies and tips are shared.

After reading through, I managed to beat the Grim Guzzler by abusing his hero power, using the Mage class. The basic strategy is pack your deck with a lot of spells and high mana cost taunt minions and Mage class happens to have a lot of useful spells. It's probably do-able with other class too. The deck that I put together from whatever cards I have, had 17 spells and 13 minions:

The Grim Guzzler Heroic Mode Mage Deck
2x Mirror Image
2x Flamecannon
2x Frostbolt
2x Frost Nova
2x Ice Barrier
2x Mirror Entity
1x Cone of Cold
2x Fireball
2x Polymorph
1x Fen Creeper
2x Sludge Belcher
1x Emperor Thaurissan
2x Lord of the Arena
1x Piloted Sky Golem
2x Sunwalker
2x Stormwind Champion
1x Force-Tank MAX
1x Kel'Thuzad

The first heroic mode boss isn't difficult at all once you figure out the deck to use. I've still no idea how to beat the other 2 though...

Update#1Hearthpwn with the Heroic Mode guide, not a lot of budget options though.

Update#2: I managed to beat Dark Iron Arena with another Mage deck. I recalled ever used a version of the Echo of Medivh Mage deck with the existing cards I had which was very defensive and thought I'll give it a try. (Edit: It is especially effective as the boss plays a ton of legendary minions and has accelerated mana) I cleared the boss on the first try and here's the decklist:

Hearthstone: Blackrock Mountain Pre-purchase ends when first wing is released (Edited)

Edit: I went ahead and pre-ordered in time before the first wing opening. I guess I really enjoy the single player games in the adventure mode during Naxxaramas. I read that the heroic mode will not be as frustrating so that'll be good.


No free first wing this time round unlike Naxxramas but still, if you ever want to spend money on the game, I think it is more worth it to spend on buying the adventure expansion over packs. An individual wing cost USD$6.99 or 700 gold or the equivalent of 7 packs and 7 packs in turn, cost USD$9.99.

The other reason for me personally will be that spending all the money on buying packs does not guarantee a good "return", easily leading to buyer remorse, whereas the expansion is fixed in the sense that you know what cards you will be getting. It is definitely possible to buy 60 packs and not get a single legendary due to the randomness as this is unlike TCG like Magic or Yu-gi-oh where you buy a box and is guaranteed a fixed amount of "Super Rare-s".

There is most likely no doubt that this adventure expansion will be important for all players who want to stay competitive. Ben Brode, the senior game designer of Hearthstone, already stated that each class will get cards that cause huge shift in the meta. (Source: Hearthpwn article) There should definitely be some cards that are relevant and may become staples for some decks as this has always been the case with card games and their card expansion to encourage people to buy them. I am hardly playing Hearthstone nowadays so I will most likely skip the pre-order, forgoing that exclusive cardback and maybe buying the bundle with cash in the future if I get back into the game more.

Thursday, April 2, 2015

Hearthstone: Blackrock Mountain a needed boost for Hearthstone?

Article by Nydra over at Gosu Gamers

There is actually a lot of focus on the randomness of the card effects but what I definitely agree with are these quotes:

"GvG didn't give us more deckbuilding options. It only gave us more auto-includes."

Firebat brought up about the prevalence of Piloted Shredder, Loatheb, Sludge Belcher and Dr. Boom and you can just check out the recent Viagame House Cup #2's card stats to find out more. (It includes decklists used too) Those cards all have above 55% appearances in decks which is huge. I don't know how Blackrock Mountain can improve that aspect of the game as any new and powerful card will simply replace the previous card in the same mana cost slots and we are back to square one again.

Wednesday, April 1, 2015

Puzzle & Dragons: Interview with producer Daisuke Yamamoto

Source: Play 4 Real article

The secret behind the Rare Egg Machine.

Update: In case any of you are wondering, the above article is not real. I thought it will be cool to share it on April Fool's Day and share a good laugh!

Tuesday, March 31, 2015

Hearthstone: Mobile version and full Blackrock Mountain full card reveal and my thoughts

HearthPwn with all the information:

Mobile achievements sighted in an upcoming Blackrock Mountain Patch
We should be close to the phone version release!

Blackrock Mountain full card reveal
Overall, other than the obvious support for dragons, I think there are quite a few situational cards this time round that depends on other cards/conditions to get better value. There are also a lot of cards similar to Bolvar Fordragon's effect which proved to be quite feasible in matches unlike what a lot of people was thinking during the card's preview. However, we need to evaluate the usefulness of these cards as a standalone without the "bonus" effects first. Bolvar was a basic 1/7 minion for a mana cost of 5 which is reasonable.

On the other hand, Mage's new Dragon's Breath spell is a basic 4 damage spell for a mana cost of 5 while Solemn Vigil is a 5 mana cost card to draw 2 cards which aren't very good. Therefore, the good ones IMO are those that are already reasonable for the initial effect like Revenge. (Warrior seem to be constantly getting at least one good control card with each new card addition) It looks like it will most likely be included into Warrior control decks for me. Quick Shot is 2 mana cost for 3 damage and that is pretty good value in itself so I think Face Hunter decks will most probably run it.

It'll be interesting to see which cards make it into the current decks as we only have 30 slots. I personally don't think there will be a lot of dragon decks coming out after this expansion unlike Naxxramas' Deathrattle and Goblins and Gnomes' mechs. The only notable ones I see are Hungry Dragon, a neutral card and Twilight Whelp, a priest card.

Monday, March 23, 2015

Puzzle & Dragons: 4th Dragon Ball Z Collab for Japan (Updated#3)

Update#3: Subreddit discussion on the latest buffs. Super Saiyan 3 Goku got the old Vegito's leader skill while Mystic/Ultimate Gohan's leader skill is now the 5x for all 5 colours like Fire/Light Horus.

The biggest changes were for Vegito though. His leader skill has been updated to include a boost to RCV which is pretty huge. His active skill has also been amended to be similar Ra's active skill while retaining the one turn delay. He also gets a boost to all 3 stats, making him one of the highest overall stat cards in the game. Together with the easy activation of his leader skill's 4x, he has become quite a powerful card now!

Update#2: There was going to be some changes to the Dragon Ball cards and here are the information in Chinese over at pad.skyozora with a subreddit discussion on them. I was expecting awakening changes for Vegito to better fit with his evolution material requirements and be in line with the other gold egg cards evolution's 7 awakenings. He did get good additional awakenings but I don't understand why the active skill and leader skill got changed. The old active was fine and definitely better IMO (I like the new skillup card though as it brings back memories of Vegito's fight with Majin Buu!) and without the need to match all 6 orbs for his new leader skill, his additional orb movement awakening doesn't make sense too. He also gets 200 more HP than Super Saiyan 3 Goku although Goku is the one that is physical typing. I just find his changes odd overall.


Update: Complete card information from Puzzle Dragon X. Uub's awakenings include 2 skill bind resist, I think with so many existing outstanding leaders, he is more likely going to be used as a sub. The collab-dropped Vegeta is pretty good leader for Gaia Descended. As a sub, he is not that good of a dark orb changer due to lacking a row or two prong awakening as well as a relatively high cooldown. Vegito's awakening is probably going to get looked into according to YamaP (Source: Minpuzz) which I kind of expected. Meanwhile, Goku's Super Saiyan 3's art got updated. The old one made him look like a child IMO while the new one seems more proportionate and menacing. (Art comparison at Minpuzz)


Information at Puzzle & Dragons Subreddit post

We are still missing information on Uub's awakenings, the latest gold egg addition to the rare egg machine and "Returned Saiyan, Vegeta"'s awakenings, leader and active skills. Uub's leader skill is basically Sonia's but for attackers. He's going to get compared to Sonia but without that important full board change active skill, I think that makes him slightly worse. I am guessing the dungeon drop Vegeta will be an invade and hopefully a useful card.

Regarding the new evolutions, Vegito is interestingly attacker/dragon while his active skills buff dragon and physical types. He also has fewer awakenings but still require rare evolution materials, although double two-prong is aplenty.  Perfect Cell, with his double two-prong awakenings and unconditional leader skill, is literally "perfect" now. Gotenks get 3 skill boosts and double two-prong. I hardly see people using him as a leader so his role is going to be of a very strong sub.

Theere are also some updates to the existing cards and the one that caught my eye was Trunks' double two-prong. He already has a very high attack so this update is huge! This time round, all the silver eggs return to the egg machine, which means it will be technically tougher to get a particular silver egg. (Tenshinhan and Raditz are good silver egg subs Edit: Mr. Satan and Piccolo are other good subs while Android 17 is a good low cost leader)

Being the 4th return of the collab, I think most people have gotten quite a number of rolls from its rare egg machine and the latest new additions aren't worth rolling alone IMO. It's definitely worth rolling if you do not have any gold eggs from it yet or you are a fan of Dragon Ball. Most of the gold eggs are great leaders and a couple of the silver eggs are good subs. With the future Final Fantasy Collab coming inevitably, non-IAP players and Final Fantasy fans should definitely save some stones for that as well.

Saturday, March 21, 2015

Hearthstone: TiddlerCelestial's Burst Mage Deck

I've heard about TiddlerCelestial a lot whenever there are Hearthstone tournaments featuring China players. He's definitely one of the top players from China and GosuGamers has an article on his burst Mage deck which has a really interesting strategy; able to switch between offensive and defensive. The decks we normally see are either focused on offensive or entirely defensive (control).

I think there are a lot of different innovative decks from China and Asia and hopefully, we get to see more of them being featured!

Hearthstone: Magic: The Gathering Pro Tour Champion Stanislav Cifka on Hearthstone

Yet another Magic: The Gathering professional player that plays Hearthstone. He is also a high-ranked chess player as well! He has an interesting take on Hearthstone in his interview at GosuGamers. His comment on randomness is actually mostly about the mana gain being consistent compared to Magic: The Gathering where you might not draw enough lands for your mana requirements, whereas most people are referring to the randomness nature of the card effects.

He'll be facing of Kolento in the current China vs Europe Season 2 and definitely someone to watch out for. You can check it out in the esl_hearthstone Twitch page.

Saturday, March 14, 2015

Puzzle & Dragons: How to find out the colour of your present egg for Japan version (Update)

Update: Minpuzz has the wordings for the White Valentine day present egg dungeon (14 March 2015 - 15 March 2015)

There are quite a few present egg dungeons that we get in a year (there is one for Valentine's Day at this time of writing) and here's how to find out about which colour the egg is for the Japan version if you do not understand Japanese.

I will google the dungeon name, for instance, this Valentine's Day is called "バレンタインダンジョン", after the dungeon's opening. I then check out the latest post regarding it, Google results will show how old the pages are. happens to have exactly what we need for this Valentine's Day Present Egg Dungeon:




Put those text through Google Translate to find out what each type, the first line above the parenthesis, correspond to. (The type is actually in Chinese too)

Enter the dungeon, move an orb and return it back to the original position so as not to trigger any combos. (This is very important as some players actually try to match something but you don't have to!The present egg will have a 50% chance to flash one of the above words in parenthesis. The other 50% chance is to flash "Wait and See". The behaviour is the same as the English versions, it's just the words that are different.

Match the words to the ones in the parenthesis to find out what color the egg is. If none of the words match, you might have found the wrong dungeon information from Google. For players who want to get a particular color, you can exit the dungeon and retry at the cost of your stamina as long as you don't defeat the egg.

Wednesday, March 11, 2015

Puzzle & Dragons: Juggler from Japan's FFCD Collab REM, taking most of the puzzle out of Puzzle & Dragons (Updated with new YouTube Video links)

There is a lot of ongoing discussion about the latest gold egg from the current Final Fantasy Crystal Defenders (FFCD) Collab. The only other time I recall a collab gold egg getting so much attention was Killua from the Hunter X Hunter Collab, being able to clear King of the Gods easily at that time.

I've read that it's a card designed by Square Enix people, hence the "lack of balance" in the leader skill. A 7x multiplier is usually reserved for a leader skill of high difficulty like Ra or Anubis but Juggler only requires 2 combo-s of heart to obtain it which leads to very easy activation with any active skills that creates heart as well as highly flexible teams, focusing on any color, with the option of going row enhance or two-prong heavy. (You can hardly squeeze in a row or two-prong match while activating Ra and Anubis unlike Juggler) It is basically the only leader you need right now to clear most of the content. At a cost of 19, it is even usable for some of the cost-restricted descends as well! (There is some skill required in managing your heart orbs when your active skills are not up in his gameplay though)

The play-style of Juggler is quite similar IMO to the Hero Gods. ( his reliance on active skills to make hearts) It's a really nice card to have as it makes the game easier but not entirely a definite "must-have" as most egg machines rolls go. A farmable leader like the ultimate evolution Beelzebub is still good enough for clearing most content safely. I'm looking forward to the upcoming FF Collab as I'm a fan of Final Fantasy and with Square Enix probably still involved in the design, we might see another overpowered card there!

Juggler Information & links

Juggler with farmable subs from Puzzle & Dragons sub-Reddit discussion

General discussion of Juggler at Puzzle & Dragons Forum

Juggler scoring 9.5/10 from GameWith. (He's on par with the Hero Gods' score)

Juggler's suggested team page at GameWith and his own page contains 2 more team builds

*New* Ultimate Devil Rush! with no Gold eggs team subs and Ultimate Hera Rush! with no Gold eggs team subs YouTube videos by 黒雪姫のきままにパズドラ (Stats and skill levels are shown at the start of the video very quickly... Jugglers are +297, Black Fairy is +297 for Devil Rush but impressive nevertheless! Interestingly, the Drawn Joker was not evolved and I wonder if it is to avoid blue binds.)

To find Juggler videos on YouTube, just search for '曲芸士PT'. *New* To find 'no Gold eggs' team subs, use the term '無課金'.

Sunday, March 8, 2015

Hearthstone: Blackrock Mountain next Adventure Expansion next month


Time to start saving your gold if you don't plan to spend money on the game! For the previous Adventure Expansion, it was worth it to buy with money instead of gold and it looks to be the same this time round. The first wing will not be free for Blackrock Mountain unlike Naxxramas and if you are buying with money, there is a pre-order choice where you can get an exclusive cardback.

Naxxramas featured quite a few staples, from Haunted Creeper to Loatheb, that are used in a lot of decks so I'm guessing you can expect the same for this upcoming expansion. There's probably no skipping if you want to compete competitively for Hearthstone.

Friday, February 13, 2015

Puzzle & Dragons: Japan Version Fist of North Star Silver Egg Souther (Updated)

parika's YouTube video featuring mostly Souther usage on making 10 combo boards

Gettingworst's sub-Reddit post about Souther

From most of people's reported rolls, I seldom see people getting Souther and although it might all just be due to randomness, Souther seems to be quite useful for combo leaders and really fun.

Update: Interesting finding from Puzzle and Dragons Forum, Souther takes more experience to max level compared to the other silver eggs (posted by Dando) and kumomo with the link to the collab egg machine rates (estimated?) Souther has the lowest rate of the silver eggs!

Tuesday, February 10, 2015

Puzzle & Dragons: Impressive players and their videos

Discussion at Reddit

I'm sure you've heard of most of the players but the one player that I never noticed before was Dubby.  He explains his thought process of orb matching in English and he actually visualises the final board each time before solving which is really impressive to me! The discussion includes a lot of well-known YouTube channels for PAD but definitely check out Dubby if you haven't before.

Edit: Here's Reco's Twitch page for those interested. His streams are in Chinese.

Sunday, February 8, 2015

Puzzle & Dragons: Famous Non-IAP Player's tips on efficiency (2nd post)

Famous non-IAP Player's tips on efficiency (2nd post from (in Chinese)

It turns out there was a second post which is basically a follow-up FAQ on the first one. There isn't much new tips here but I'll leave it here for those who are interested and to round-up his posts for completion.