Elves are a popular choice for new Warstorm players for several reasons, such as:
- they are one of the two factions provided when you begin your account.
- their customized Faction Pack in the Warstorm Store costs only 5000 silver, as opposed to the 12500 silver required for other factions, including Humans.
- their special abilities are better suited to combat the current metagame in Quickmatch then Humans.
- In the Squad section of the Warstorm Store, you can purchase two different Elf Squads, which not only contain Equipment and Spell cards, but also cards from the Mercenaries set, which players normally cannot obtain without either paying Warstorm Cash or getting lucky in the Card Shop.
Thus, an Elf deck or two is a good starting point for new players, and gives them something to build towards later on.
The first thing new players should do is to beat the first two campaigns, in order to build up a small collection of cards as well as earn some silver. This should be possible via persistance no matter what cards you have, so keep trying. Note that you will have only the starting Elf Hero, Blademaster Wilaren, so make sure not to neglect using your Human Cards during this time! Later on, you can use only Elf Decks in order to try and get the Elf Mastery achievements, or mix and match, as cards from different factions often have great synergy. At the end of the first two campaigns, you should have a good foundation of cards from the Novice Set, as well as a limited selection of cards from the Expert Set. Card choices will be discussed later in the article.
For now, the first order of business is to obtain a second Elf Hero. Unfortunately, new players are now faced with several choices:
- Buy Novice Set packs until you receive a second Elf Hero. The Novice Set heroes are sometimes quite useful, such as Firestarter Arfalas, or Landen Hawkeye, but for the most part, Novice Set units are quite weak. As well, all Novice Set heroes have no Equipment or Spell slots, so you will not be able to use any of these cards if you obtain them later. Of course, Novice packs also only give you three cards, and two of them will almost always be grey-rarity cards such as Silvintri Defender.
- Buy Elf Faction packs. This has the advantage of strengthening your Elf collection, but you might not get a hero. Without two or more Elf Heroes, you will be unable to progress with the Elf Mastery Achievements. However, when buying Elf Faction packs you can also obtain Spell and Equipment cards, which come in handy no matter what faction you use.
- Save up a bunch of silver for the Deadly Arrows pre-built squad. This gives you an excellent second hero, Aradaan Silverhair, and two Equipment cards, but also pigeonholes your deck slightly as you will be forced to use Archery cards to play off of your new hero's strengths. However, this is not necessary a bad thing. Of course, this method is expensive, and you might have to build up your Silver quite a bit by beating more campaigns or quickmatching before you can afford this.
The choice is up to the player but Option 2 is the most effective use of silver and is much more affordable for the new player.
Hopefully you will have obtained a second Elf Hero in some fashion. It is now recommended to play through the remaining campaigns in order to build silver as well as make sure you will be getting the maximum bonus silver per day!
The remaining campaigns sometimes have very difficult battles, so it is now time to look at your squad composition.
From beating the first two campaigns, you should have a few cards from the Expert Set that you will be able to base your first squads around, such as:
- Twilight Warrior, a Ready 6 card with 2 attack and 4 health. It also has Sneak Attack 2, which means that the turn it is deployed, it will hit very hard, potentially killing some cards in one shot. These cards are great for cutting through tougher enemy cards, such as anything with Block or Regenerate.
- Icemage of Aradaan, a Ready 10 card with 0 attack and 4 health, but can cast Icebolt 2. This is called a 'tech' card, which means that the usefulness of the card comes from its special abilities. Though the target of Icebolt is random, an extra two damage (and 50% chance of losing a turn) can make sure your other cards will take less damage, and can give you a card advantage which can be hard to overcome sometimes!
- Icebow Archer, a Ready 6 Card with 1 attack and 4 health, as well as the Archery and Sap special abilities. Icebow Archer will do double damage to all Infantry and Flying cards. Infantry cards are the most common card type, and Flying cards are both popular and powerful, so Icebow Archer can help you defend against these threats. As well, with Sap 1, the Icebow Archer can with time reduce a card's attack to 0, preventing damage to you or to other cards.
Of course, early on, you won't have enough cards to be able to fill your entire squad with Expert Deck cards. Some Novice Set cards seem like they would be useless, but they can help your more powerful cards out.
Cards like Silvintri Defender or Anden Warden are very quick and have a decent amount of health (2 ready and 5 health), allowing them to 'block' (not the ability) for other cards such as Icemage of Aradaan. This lets your fragile Icemage deal his damage without being attacked in some cases. In contrast, a card like Shadow Panther, with 4 attack but only 1 health, can dish out a lot of damage to your opponent if it is drawn at the end of a long line of friendly cards, which can win you the game, even though your own cards might be overmatched. Other decent Novice cards include Forest Crawler, Anden Silverback, Silvintri Mage, and Anden Venombow.
Remember that Warstorm battles are largely about luck! Even the best cards in the world might come out in just the wrong order to allow your opponent victory, and likewise, even the hardest enemy squad can eventually be beaten, even if you have to grab a bunch of quick cards and deplete his morale before his cards come out!
Make sure to try new combinations of cards and keep battling until you make it through most of the campaigns (perhaps the Monsters Expansion campaign can wait until later).
Popular Squad ArchetypesEdit
If you are playing Elves, you only have some many options: Elf cards are mostly Infantry, with several Archers, Beasts, and Barriers distributed throughout the sets. Common elf abilities include: Archery, Poison, Frenzy, and Demoralize.
This is a very popular choice due to the Archery ability being strong against both some of the most common cards (Infantry) as well as the most popular cards currently released (for the most part, this means several powerful Demon Faction cards, such as Red Dragon, Raganash, and Yauba Ascendant).
Most often, this deck will include Aradaan Silverhair, who is an Archer Hero that has Command: Archers as well as two Equipment slots. To maximize use of the command ability, the squads should be filled with other Elven Archer cards such as Icebow Archer and Cultist of Aradaan, and will also nearly always include a Treehold, which has Protect Archers 2 and so can make the fragile Archer cards last a little longer. Using only silver, a choice in Equipment cards can be difficult to achieve, but anything that can make your cards a little tougher, such as Khronan Rum, return from the dead, such as Battle Horn, or come out quicker, such as Slavedriver Whip, can be very useful.
It is also possible to make archery-based decks using two powerful Elf Cavalry cards, Anden Horsebow and the Mercenary deck Shield Rider, which is available for silver by purchasing the pre-build squad Maximum Heal in the Squad Shop. These two cards have the advantage of more health and resilience, and will have a much better chance of defeating the popular red dragon-based Demon decks in Quickmatch, but are not actually Archers, so will not synergize with Treehold or Aradaan Silverhair.
Even if your strategy is not based around Archery, is it important to consider including cards with Archery in your squad, as it is sometimes very difficult to get past Flying enemies without this. If you choose not to include Archery cards, you will have to try to make up for it using very quick squads (as some flyers have very long ready times), indirect attacks such as Icebolt, Zap, and Demoralize, or by the use of Spells and Equipment.
Elf Squads can make unique use of Poison as their racial dragon type, Green Dragons, have Poison as their ability. Unfortunately, Green Dragons are also the only type of Dragon that cannot fly, which makes them very vulnerable to the popular flying cards that are out there. Sillikiatrix and Nalinai Poisonblade are the obvious choices for hero, but it is important to consider balance as well: Poisoned enemies will usually get one more turn before going to their deaths, so any cards that force enemies to lose turns (such as Icemage of Aradaan or the Hero Nightprowler Silven), or heal damage on units (Anden Priest and Light Priestess Enyi). Of course, the ability to deal with Flying is important, and Icebow Archer can reduce damage to your Green Dragons in the right circumstances as well. Equipment and spells can also help a lot, such as Ring of Flight, Shield of Storms, Choking Cloud, or Nature's Wrath, but your hero choices might have to change, as neither Sillikiatrix nor Nalinai Poisonblade have Equipment or Spell slots.
Many Elf Beast cards have Frenzy, such as Hungry Wolf, Werewolf, and Blackpaw Grizzly, which gives them bonus attack whenever they successfully deal damage to an enemy card. However, they can only built up so far before they are killed, which makes keeping Frenzied cards alive to kill again the basic of a Frenzy deck. Once again, cards with Icebolt, Heal, and Trap are good ideas, as well as Equipment cards that can grant Regeneration (Troll Blood Vial) and Block (Kirdanann and Shield of Storms) or of course, anything that can bring down Flying cards. Under the right circumstances, Frenzied cards can build up to 10 attack or even more!
Also a popular choice in the current metagame, as it does not require actually defeating flying cards in order to win! This kind of squad focuses around cards like Ancient Silverback, Anden Sunsword, and Sunsword Captain in order to deplete the enemy's morale directly. A popular hero choice is Gwyn Lightbringer as she can use Reclaim to bring defeated cards back from the graveyard, thus letting them deplete enemy morale further. As well, her spells can be used to make sure your fragile Demoralizers get more time; using Rust, Resurrect, or Demonic Ritual can all pay dividends.
Please remember to experiment on your own, not only with Elf cards but with other factions as well, to find a strategy that works for you!