Crucible of War gave us some amazing gifts, with one of the most exciting aspects being the new weapons bestowed upon each class. As the set was released, the crowd went wild for the likes of mandible claws and Citari sabers. New weapons gave whole new paths with which different classes could be played. However, some new weapons fell a little bit flat with the fans of the game. One of these was Sledge of Anvilheim.
On the surface, the hammer seems extremely similar to what Guardian already has – Anothos. They both end up attacking for six most times, but the sledge costs one more resource point to do so. However, when you look closely, there are two big differences between the two weapons:
Reliance on High Cost Cards
Anothos demands a high density of pitch cards that cost three or more to activate its ability. While it might seem fine in a class that predominantly has high cost cards, it does limit the cards you can play in your Guardian list. Sledge on the other hand, doesn’t have those restrictions.
Once Per Turn Attack
Most weapons in the game have a restriction of only being able to attack once per turn. Anothos is one of them. Sledge, however, can attack as many times in the turn as you like, providing you have the actions points and resources points. Achieving multiple hits is not easy, but with my latest Crazy Brew, I hope to unleash the true power of the Sledge!
Class: Guardian Hero: Bravo Weapons: Sledge of Anvilheim Equipment: Arcanite Skullcap, Crater Fist, Heartened Cross Strap, Ironrot Legs, Mage Master Boots, Nullrune Boots, Nullrune Gloves, Nullrune Hood, Nullrune Robe, Tectonic Plating (2) Crippling Crush (red) (2) Enlightened Strike (red) (2) Flock of the Featherwalkers (red) (2) Life for a Life (red) (2) Plunder Run (red) (2) Scar for a Scar (red) (2) Sigil of Solace (red) (2) Spinal Crush (red) (2) Flock of the Featherwalkers (yellow) (2) Righteous Cleansing (yellow) (2) Sigil of Solace (yellow) (2) Springboard Somersault (yellow) (1) Tome of Fyendal (yellow) (2) Come to Fight (blue) (2) Cranial Crush (blue) (2) Disable (blue) (1) Energy Potion (blue) (2) Lunging Press (blue) (1) Potion of Strength (blue) (1) Timesnap Potion (blue) (2) Whisper of the Oracle (blue) (2) Wounding Blow (blue) fabdb.net
At its core, the deck utilizes the four Flock of the Feather Walkers (Yellow) to consistently generate quicken tokens, making it easier to swing with the Sledge multiple times. There are 30 cards that cost one to help you consistently put pressure on your opponent. The aggressive go again cards help you to chip away at your opponent’s life total and armor while distracting your opponent from the real goal of the deck – stacking the big attacks on the bottom of your deck with a good cushion of blues. Once you start drawing those, your opponent should be low enough on life, armor and defense reactions to really get punished with those big dominated swings.
Pitching a red and a blue pitch to swing with Sledge seems inefficient, but when you break it down, it’s actually a really smooth play. Let’s take a Drone of Brutality (Red) as an example. You pitch a blue or yellow and swing for six with red Drone. That’s two cards for an attack for six. With Sledge, you’re pitching two cards, let’s say a big red attack and a blue pitch – that’s also an attack for 6 using 2 cards. Add some Life for a Life (Red) and you have a three card hand that deals 10 damage and threatens an on-hit effect.
Adding the Swiftness to Bravo
When you add Flocks to the mix, the quicken token makes it easy to swing twice with the Sledge. All you need are three cards – at least two blues and a yellow pitch. 12 damage using three cards is some pretty good value. Add a Timesnap Potion to the mix and you can turn a four blue pitch hand into 18 damage with three hammer swings. But let’s not get carried away. There are some other fun interactions with quicken tokens – such as swinging with an Enlightened Strike to draw a card then following it up with a dominated Crippling Crush is bound to take someone by surprise! Even just being able to swing and drop a Potion for a late game is a good turn.
Swift Offense Means Swift Defense
Your primary poking attacks like Scar for a Scar (Red) and Life for a Life (Red) are extremely powerful when you’re lower in life. The deck is designed to trade blow-for-blow using those attacks, while leaning on cards like Sigil of Solace (Yellow) to regain the life you’ve sacrificed. If you happen to draw a Scar for a Scar (Red) or Life for a Life (Red) when you’re higher life, simply pitch it to the sledge along a blue pitch and save the powerful attack for later.
The main reason why it’s okay for you to dip down to a low life total is because of your insanely strong equipment blocks. Guardian has the highest (equal) number of equipment blocks, helping you block up to 10 damage – three with the Arcanite Skullcap, three with Tectonic Plating, three with Crater Fist and one with Ironrot Legs. This means you can slowly trade blow for blow, block the attacks that matter and when you draw a dream hand, throw your equipment at their attack and unleash on your turn.
This is a completely different and unorthodox way of playing Bravo that is bound to take your opponent by surprise. Feel free to adjust the list based on your local metagame. Cards like Command and Conquer could work well against defense reaction-heavy lists. If you’re facing a ton or Warriors or Ninjas, some more defense reactions could be the way to go. I will also post up a budget version of the list for those who just want to try it out.
Class: Guardian Hero: Bravo Weapons: Sledge of Anvilheim Equipment: Goliath Gauntlet, Heartened Cross Strap, Helm of Isen's Peak, Ironrot Legs, Ironrot Plate, Nullrune Boots, Nullrune Gloves, Nullrune Hood, Nullrune Robe, Snapdragon Scalers (2) Chokeslam (red) (2) Crippling Crush (red) (2) Flock of the Featherwalkers (red) (2) Life for a Life (red) (2) Plunder Run (red) (2) Scar for a Scar (red) (2) Sigil of Solace (red) (1) Snatch (red) (2) Spinal Crush (red) (2) Flock of the Featherwalkers (yellow) (2) Righteous Cleansing (yellow) (2) Sigil of Solace (yellow) (2) Springboard Somersault (yellow) (2) Come to Fight (blue) (2) Cranial Crush (blue) (2) Disable (blue) (1) Energy Potion (blue) (2) Lunging Press (blue) (1) Potion of Strength (blue) (1) Timesnap Potion (blue) (2) Whisper of the Oracle (blue) (2) Wounding Blow (blue) fabdb.net
In the budget list, you cannot lean on your equipment blocks as much, but Helm of Isen’s Peak works well with quicken tokens. I replaced the combination of Mage Master Boots and Tome of Fyendal with Snapdragon Scalers and a single Snatch (Red). This makes the lost a bit more dynamic and helps to strip your opponent of armor even more. Enlightened Strike has been replaced with Chokeslam (Red), as they help to reduce pressure from aggressive decks that pump their attacks. It does increase the count of three or higher cost cards to 12, but that should not affect the ability to pull off Flock of the Feather Walkers (Yellow). Heartened Cross Strap helps to pull off the bigger attacks easier as well and a three cost Spinal Crush or Life for a Life (Red) followed by a five cost Crippling Crush can be deadly.
Sledge of Anvilheim opened up a ton of possibilities of how Bravo can be built. I’m sure with a bit of practice you will enjoy the new hammer as much as I have building this list. Other than Flock of the Feather Walkers (Yellow), there are a number of options to get that weapon to swing a few times like Timesnap Potion and Coax a Commotion. The list I have provided is a good base list, but feel free to take it in any direction you feel like based on your playstyle and meta game. Enjoy the hammer swings!