Monday, July 28, 2008

Creature Class Crititque #4: Varmits

Okay, I'll admit it. When you think of Guardians creature classes, Varmit is not the first thing to come to mind. Not even in the top ten. But, hey, let's be unconventional.

I'm not exactly sure what a "varmit" is, except, perhaps, a "varmint" with a southern accent. Varmints are, generally, animals and birds that are pests or vermin or other rodents not covered by gaming laws.

Rascally pests are exactly what three Varmits are (and to be charitable, I'll add a fourth, read on).

The Pesky Varmit has Vit 3 but get a plus 3 bonus against Medium-sized creatures. If you just play the Limited/Revised edition, you'll get that bonus nearly half the time (randomly speaking). That's a heck of a plus. Almost all Knights and Pirates, most Undead and most Slag Beasts are Medium-sized, so you have a head start against many theme decks.

The Varmit Archer is only a 1-point ranged attack, but that's all it takes to win what otherwise would be a push. And at a pitiful Vitality 2, he's easy to stack.

If the Sneaky Varmit survives its primary match-up, your opponent must discard one random card from his Creature Pen. There goes that terrain card he was saving. Or that creature you just Bribed.

Finally, another pest even if he's an Animal, is the Sales Weasel, who is Vitality 4 but becomes Vitality 10 if your opponent doesn't spend a stone. It's better than spending a Stone and a Power Lunch. (And if there's ever a third edition, I'd like to see him reclassified -- if he makes the cut.)

(Note: I don't know if I wrote that before or after finding out that FPG went out of the gaming business.)

These pests are just too cool.

On the downside, as a class, they're limited by the fact that there are only four of them and they don't help each other. But they don't hurt each other either. Two of them have a good bump in their own Vitality, two of them can cost your opponent resources (cards or stones). And since they're low numbers, they go with anything.

Extra card to use:

, a flying Saurian from Necropolis Park. He forces discard of a Medium-sized creature. That narrows it down a little for your Pesky Varmit. (Okay, it's a stretch, but I'm looking for a common theme. There aren't many.)

Iron Crag Bagglers, Bogglers and Bugglers: Yes, they're fairies and fairy decks are common enough. But these guys (and when I see them I think "Time to make the donuts!") are as annoying as the Varmits are. Dispel command cards, prevent ranged attacks (when shooting some of your own) and force Item discard.

Summary: Great annoyance characters, but remove the Pesky Varmits as soon as you see Tookle. And the archers aren't likely to be needed with your Giants, but you never know.

C. J. Burke
Keeper of the Flame

Varmit Pack Leader: Mortal, Vit 5, OCB 0, Small, Gold, Varmit, CMP 0, Red bar.
C: All Varmits are +1 Vitality for each Varmit in play.

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