Freitag, 19. August 2016

I have an army. We have a Merkator.

Greetings Masters of Krosmaster!
This is Warpstone and we’ll look at one of the most popular Krosmasters, one of the top tournament picks and the winner of WC 2016 - Merkator.

After issuing this article in the Russian language here in our public we had a steady decrease of Merkator's tournament potential in our community/ So probably we should have put it here before the Worlds, but it's never too late.

Character background:
Rugerdas Merkator is a cartographer who literally hit rock bottom. He went completely mad during his underwater expedition. A skilled technomage, this old Foggernaut set out on a task of completely charting the ocean’s bottom. This hopeless endeavour is the thing that has driven him mad.

Merkator is a high-level character with 3 MP, 8 AP and a whooping 17 HP.

Why is he trouble?
One of Merkator’s main strengths are his powers: Krobust prevents him from taking more than 3 injuries from a single enemy spell; Water and Air Resistances protect him from many popular ranged attacks (think Quentin Flush’s Lottery or Bill Tell’s arrows). His Button Snap spell will double his damage for a turn while buffing his AP and MP for the next turn, effectively giving him enough power to seriously punish his enemies and finish the survivors later. Aside from that, a huge number of Demonic Rewards will turn him into a perfect killing machine for a turn, be it Air/Water damage or AP/MP buffs.

Team comps:
Most popular pieces to complement Merkator are Kanniball Jav or Srammy  who help his positioning by pushing him into the mid-field, as well as Lou (the level 2 Ouginak) who can buff his AP/MP with minimal risk of damaging him in the process (due to his Water Resistance). The rest of the team is usually filled with low-level utility Krosmasters collecting Kamas, providing Initiative (Coa Gulary), control (Moe Lawr, Mike Locke, Fern Sock’em, Phaeris - Devastated), healing (Di Curey, Steamy Wonder) or more damage (Quentin Flush).
Thus, a typical Merkator Push team consists of the Merk himself, pushers and Kama collectors, as well as utility characters.

How to counter Merkator?
A good tactic would be to keep one’s distance from Merkator. He’s got the worst mobility/range combination among the level 6’s and finds it hard to bypass or avoid blocking terrain. Use summoned mobs or mechanisms to your advantage!
MP-reducing bombs and attacks would be the most efficient; using summons to block his way will also prevent Jav or Srammy from pushing him toward your team. Among popular MP reducers are Ghett Outtadier, Diver Birel, Boo Ming and Elogio. Moe Lawr, Doo Rex and Vampyro could reduce his spell range. Unorthodox choices include Grampy, who can, with some luck, both push Merkator away and reduce his MP; Black Crow’s summoned Krobaks both block his way and disrupt his positioning with their Attracts 1 attacks. In addition, Black Crow’s Laugh will devastate a Merkator Push’s first turn, preventing Jav’ third or Srammy’s second push.
Another way would be to use Malee Buhrum or Kriss Krass to rid Merkator of his Resistances and Krobust, thus allowing to do more damage.
DR’s that increase your spells’ base damage might be less important than survivability or maneuverability DR’s due to Krobust negating all damage from a single spell above 3. Therefore, characters with multiple attacks start to shine against Merk. Both Flame Knight and Yugo can perform series of attacks that are not affected by Merkator’s Resistances. Yet another good team comp would include a number of level 1’s to launch multiple spells at Merkator. Even if a turn of attacks from these characters doesn’t kill Merkator, the massive damage will make the Merk player think twice about using Button Snap.

Don’t play his games:
A typical Merkator team shines when equipped with proper DR’s and is therefore heavily Kama-dependent. Merk will strive to stockpile DR’s that allow him to kill one of your Krosmasters each turn, so his low-level allies will run around the map collecting coins. First, it is a good idea to target characters who are far away from Merk. Second, you can buy the DR’s Merk wants, such as Air/Water damage buffs and Xelor Style, even if you don’t really need them. Yet another good tactic is to try ignoring Merk altogether and focus on his weaker allies who are cumulatively worth the same 6 GG’s.

Demonic Rewards:
Several DR’s turn Merk into an unstoppable force on the arena, so it is a good idea to deny them to a Merk player (bold letters indicate the most powerful):
Granite: Ghetto Rade, Aero Buff, Aero Boost, Aqua Buff, Aqua Boost
Jade: Xelor Style, Cra Style, Enutrof Style, Iop Style, Sram Style, Sacrier Style
Gold: Stasis Crystal, Crow Set, Vulbis Dofus, Cawwot Dofus, Ice Dofus, Wakfu Spout, Lil’Wabbit

There are a few that will help fight against Merk by providing a tactical advantage:
Glue, Confuse, Osamodas Style, Sadida Style, Feca Style, Recall Potion.

Below is a typical Merkator Push starting position on Pit Arena. Red borders indicate Steamtrooper damage range if Merkator isn’t blocked.

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