Rook Guide

Discussion in 'Puzzle-Strike: Bag of Chips' started by Sun Bro, Mar 7, 2012.

  1. Sun Bro

    Sun Bro Member

    EDIT: Put Chump's version up here, since mine was pretty bare-bones.


    Rook is made of rock, making him as solid as you’d expect. He’s a straightforward character who can quickly put big gems in his hand or pile and bury careless opponents in the ensuing avalanche.

    [Triangle: leaning largely towards, rushdown, split between econ and defense]

    Strengths:
    - Able to build 4-gems very quickly
    - Builds up a modest economy without buying new chips
    - Lots of control over his gempile

    Weaknesses:
    - Few arrows
    - Vulnerable to wounds and disruption.
    - No innate combo tricks

    Gameplan

    With Strength of Earth and an early Combine, Rook can guarantee a 4-gem before his third cycle, letting him put the pressure on. Strength of Earth should be played frequently in the early game to build up height bonus, and judicious use of Stone Wall will protect Rook’s pile without sacrificing offense. He can also use Stone Wall to pig one of his other character chips to set up Strength of Earth into Big Rocks, or Strength of Earth into a washer. Rook wants to keep his opponents under too much pressure to use their usual tricks, so avoid countercrashes and concentrate on putting gems in their pile.

    Puzzle Chips

    Chips Rook Loves

    - Button Mashing, It’s a Trap

    Both of these chips let Rook wash brown arrows while keeping his deck the same size. He can use It’s a Trap to trap the opponent’s favorite puzzles or keep them from buying big gems while he uses Big Rocks. Button Mashing can combo with Stone Wall’s main action.

    - One of Each, Roundhouse, Punch Punch Kick

    All of these chips can wash Strength of Earth’s brown arrow to black while keeping Rook’s effective deck size small. Punch, Punch Kick also gives Rook a fork. One of Each boosts Rook’s economy and gives him pigs he can use for Crash Gems and other important chips. Roundhouse is handy because it actually shrinks Rooks effective bag size!

    -Combos are Hard, X-Copy

    By skipping Combine, Combos are Hard is a chip Rook can pick up really quickly and then use in order to get an early Double Crash Gem and anything else he needs. X-Copy lets Rook crash more and really keep up the pressure!

    - Risk to Riskonade

    A single play of this chip will set up a terrifying offense for Rook. Against Rook, it’s too unsafe to consider.

    - Gem Essence

    Gem Essence lets Rook play Strength of Earth much more often, both by shrinking his deck and by letting him follow it up with any chip he wants. Once he’s has two Combines and a Crash, it might even be worth picking up more than one.

    Chips Rook Fears

    - Mix Master

    This counters Strength of Earth pretty well, often forcing Rook to crash before he’s ready. Try only building 2-gems until you draw your Crash.

    - Really Annoying, Just a Scratch, Ouch

    Rook doesn’t like wounds clogging up his bag as it slows down his ability to combine and crash fast. Ouch additionally messes up Rook by trashing his Combines.

    - Stolen Purples

    Rook likes to have more purples than most characters. This chip strongly discourages such a thing, as it can literally cripple Rook’s turns, again making Strength of Earth much riskier.

    General Tips
    • Buying a Crash Gem (or even a Combine) over a 3 Gem is often a good idea. Big Rocks will provide the gems you need to buy cost 6 chips.
    • Rook can use Stone Wall’s main to ensure that he draws Combine or Strength of Earth on the first hand of a cycle, making a quick 4-gem that much more likely.
    - Sometimes it’s better to hold off on counter crashing or using Stone Wall in order to gain some pile-height bonus.

    Matchups:

    Matchups Rook Loves

    Rook loves playing against lategame characters with poor pile control, like Setsuki, Gloria, Degrey, and Quince. Against Rook, many characters are forced to crash early instead of using their character chips or building up an economy. Quince’s Flagstone Tax is countered by Strength of Earth, which lets Rook both keep his pile high and threaten big crashes.

    Matchups Rook Fears

    Rook has barely any cycling ability, so characters like Zane and Vendetta, who can pluck the Crash Gems from his deck, present a real challenge. Argagarg wounds him while blocking his Conbines, and Jaina can rush him down while tossing out additional attacks. Rook will need extra crashes and careful use of the bank to survive.
     
  2. Sun Bro

    Sun Bro Member

    This is obviously a rough draft. I've been helping my girlfriend with her homework tonight but I promise I will improve on this very soon! As usual any feedback/advice/help is welcome!
     
  3. ApolloAndy

    ApolloAndy Well-Known Member

    Both of these chips are useful to Rook when we can’t afford a combine.

    Typo?
     
  4. ChumpChange

    ChumpChange Well-Known Member Staff Member

    Edited Rook; filled in a lot of blanks and generally cleaned up the language.


    Rook is made of rock, making him as solid as you’d expect. He’s a straightforward character who can quickly put big gems in his hand or pile and bury careless opponents in the ensuing avalanche.

    [Triangle: leaning largely towards, rushdown, split between econ and defense]

    Strengths:
    - Able to build 4-gems very quickly
    - Builds up a modest economy without buying new chips
    - Lots of control over his gempile

    Weaknesses:
    - Few arrows
    - Vulnerable to wounds and disruption.
    - No innate combo tricks

    Gameplan

    With Strength of Earth and an early Combine, Rook can guarantee a 4-gem before his third cycle, letting him put the pressure on. Strength of Earth should be played frequently in the early game to build up height bonus, and judicious use of Stone Wall will protect Rook’s pile without sacrificing offense. He can also use Stone Wall to pig one of his other character chips to set up Strength of Earth into Big Rocks, or Strength of Earth into a washer. Rook wants to keep his opponents under too much pressure to use their usual tricks, so avoid countercrashes and concentrate on putting gems in their pile.

    Puzzle Chips

    Chips Rook Loves

    - Button Mashing, It’s a Trap

    Both of these chips let Rook wash brown arrows while keeping his deck the same size. He can use It’s a Trap to trap the opponent’s favorite puzzles or keep them from buying big gems while he uses Big Rocks. Button Mashing can combo with Stone Wall’s main action.

    - One of Each, Roundhouse, Punch Punch Kick

    All of these chips can wash Strength of Earth’s brown arrow to black while keeping Rook’s effective deck size small. Punch, Punch Kick also gives Rook a fork. One of Each boosts Rook’s economy and gives him pigs he can use for Crash Gems and other important chips. Roundhouse is handy because it actually shrinks Rooks effective bag size!

    -Combos are Hard, X-Copy

    By skipping Combine, Combos are Hard is a chip Rook can pick up really quickly and then use in order to get an early Double Crash Gem and anything else he needs. X-Copy lets Rook crash more and really keep up the pressure!

    - Risk to Riskonade

    A single play of this chip will set up a terrifying offense for Rook. Against Rook, it’s too unsafe to consider.

    - Gem Essence

    Gem Essence lets Rook play Strength of Earth much more often, both by shrinking his deck and by letting him follow it up with any chip he wants. Once he’s has two Combines and a Crash, it might even be worth picking up more than one.

    Chips Rook Fears

    - Mix Master

    This counters Strength of Earth pretty well, often forcing Rook to crash before he’s ready. Try only building 2-gems until you draw your Crash.

    - Really Annoying, Just a Scratch, Ouch

    Rook doesn’t like wounds clogging up his bag as it slows down his ability to combine and crash fast. Ouch additionally messes up Rook by trashing his Combines.

    - Stolen Purples

    Rook likes to have more purples than most characters. This chip strongly discourages such a thing, as it can literally cripple Rook’s turns, again making Strength of Earth much riskier.

    General Tips

    • Buying a Crash Gem (or even a Combine) over a 3 Gem is often a good idea. Big Rocks will provide the gems you need to buy cost 6 chips.
    • Rook can use Stone Wall’s main to ensure that he draws Combine or Strength of Earth on the first hand of a cycle, making a quick 4-gem that much more likely.
    - Sometimes it’s better to hold off on counter crashing or using Stone Wall in order to gain some pile-height bonus.

    Matchups:

    Matchups Rook Loves

    Rook loves playing against lategame characters with poor pile control, like Setsuki, Gloria, Degrey, and Quince. Against Rook, many characters are forced to crash early instead of using their character chips or building up an economy. Quince’s Flagstone Tax is countered by Strength of Earth, which lets Rook both keep his pile high and threaten big crashes.

    Matchups Rook Fears

    Rook has barely any cycling ability, so characters like Zane and Vendetta, who can pluck the Crash Gems from his deck, present a real challenge. Argagarg wounds him while blocking his Conbines, and Jaina can rush him down while tossing out additional attacks. Rook will need extra crashes and careful use of the bank to survive.
     
  5. rabid_schnauzer

    rabid_schnauzer Well-Known Member

    Since I've been trying to get a better handle on Rook during his free week here, some thoughts:

    Rook has an arrows shortage, starting with Crash (Purple Ender/Reaction), another Purple Ender/Reaction, A Purple to Brown Washer and a Brown Ender. This combines with his lack of deck-thinning / improvement chips and his ability to grow his own gem pile to make most puzzle chip enders generally poor buys for him. Unless he's already done some engine building, he's unlikely to get to play such chips more than twice before they become liabilities reducing his odds of drawing a Crash.

    Thus in most forkless pools, Rook has to decide whether to go for a monopurple rushdown, or whether to go monogem and try to get a Double Crash Gem before going monopurple. He's better-than reasonable, but short of great at either strategy, and has to execute one or the other with no ability to switch it up - resulting in a great deal of predictability for his opponent to take advantage of.

    Rook should have a good economy, but it often doesn't matter. There's a weird issue in that it's very common for him to start with a pair of $4 buys in his first two turns, but the vast majority of $4 cost Puzzle chips are poor buys for Rook - thus leading him to either go with early Combines for a rush so heavy that he can't play econ later or to buy chips below $4 cost on his opening cycle, thereby failing to leverage the early boost in money he should have.

    Seriously, here's the rundown on the 4-costers:

    Chips for Free -okay for Rook, can be played off of Rook's brown arrow, adds cycling. However with his additional ante, Rook has to be careful not to cycle past his Crash in the early-mid turns though. Also better for the majority of opponents than for Rook, meaning that his advantage of being able to often buy two on the first orbit is usually negated.

    Combinatorics - not an ender, but another purple to brown washer. The effectiveness of how well it combines with Strength of Earth combining and Combine combining is arguable - however the pile height minimum makes it a poor choice for a first cycle buy.

    Dashing Strike - Not an ender, but Red to Brown washer, Rook has no red arrows, and arrow duplicates arrow Rook already has, making this mediocre

    Gems to Gemonade - Another purple ender, and largely duplicates Stone Wall's reaction. This is only a buy if Rook needs the draws for engine building or :psorb:s have been trapped multiple times.

    Hundred Fist Frenzy - Rook has zero innate red synergies, making this largely a waste.

    Improvisation - A sort of fork / sort of draw, this is okay for Rook, provided he refrains from buying additional gems and goes slow econ via Big Rocks upgrading. The reaction is sometimes okay against the reds which can be problematic for Rook. There is a small chance that Improv into Strength of Earth is a lategame suicide.

    Iron Defense - this is one of Rook's best $4 chips, since it can minimize the odds of a heavy Strength of Earth rush backfiring on a poor draw, and it's generally adequate to only play it once or twice.

    Mixmaster - This chip wrecks Rook. He has no red arrows to play it himself and it negates much of the advantage Rook can gain with Strength of Earth.

    One-Two Punch - the all-purpose fork is pretty good for Rook, giving him a pair of arrows to play his purple chips off of, and frequently opening up otherwise untenable strategies for Rook. On the downside, Rook's only innate cycling control is Stone Wall's main, so he requires some luck to get the fully effective draw with the fork and a pair of enders in the same hand on his second orbit.

    Ouch!: Have I mentioned that Rook is bad at playing :psfist:s and lacks red arrows ?

    Pick Your Poison: Have I mentioned that Rook is bad at playing :psfist:s and lacks red arrows ?

    Self-Improvement: Another actually good $4 coster for Rook. The reaction really does help against many of the :psfist:s that can plague Rook, and the main is reasonable even if it can only be played twice in the early game - having nice synergy with either Big Rocks gem upgrading to give Rook a very solid midgame economy or with Strength of Earth to let Rook pressure with frequent 4-gem crashes

    Stolen Purples: As I think I implied somewhere, Rook is downright bad at playing red chips. This chip by itself ruins monopurple and can deny Rook the chance to Crash after he's built a 4-gem.

    So with that in mind, Rook often will want a [2]-gem or a $3 cost puzzle chip over a $4 cost puzzle chip in the first cycle. And well, the entire cast is capable of buying a [2] gem and a Combine on turns 1 and 2, meaning that Rook often does not see his economic advantage at the start.


    Overall, Rook is mainly a midgame character, and his primary strength seems to be in controlling the tempo of the game. Strength of Earth's added ante can speed the game up, and gives Rook the option of how big a gem to crash before other characters gain that option. Stone Wall's gem negation reduces total gems in piles, lengthening the game. A lot of the skill to playing Rook seems to be in knowing which characters he has to rushdown (Arg, Perse, Sets, DeGrey, Lum, Onimaru, Quince, BBB) with the tempo at maximum and which character he wants to slow things down against from the get-go (Jaina, Menelker, Zane, Midori) and what sort of bank suggests what sort of tempo for the characters who can go either way.
     
    Turbo164 likes this.
  6. rabid_schnauzer

    rabid_schnauzer Well-Known Member

    As to other chips:

    A Rook player should squee with delight when Gem Essence is in the bank. The deck-thinning fork is good for just about everyone, however for Rook it fixes his arrow shortage, can be played profitably by itself or with any combination of his character chips, well with Big Rocks gem-growing to turbocharge Rook's midgame economy and works well with Strength of Earth to boost his pressure Rush, while also giving him a reason to consider Red or Blue enders in the bank. Midori is likely the only matchup where an opponent does better with Gem Essence than Rook does.

    The cantrips are obviously good for Rook, and it's not uncommon for Rook to face the choice between a first-cycle [3]-gem or a 1st-cycle One of Each.

    Secret Move can be pretty good for Rook, and I kinda worry about it's omission from the strategy guide. It's a brown to black washer, allowing Rook o crash after Strength of Earth; it stays in play offering virtual deck thinning so long as Rook has adequate :psorb:s before playing it (and if he's going rushdown, he does); and it fixes Rook's worry that the chip he most often wants to :pspig: is his only chip with a :pspig: on it. That it also lets him time his Crash better to line up that [4] send or avoid a countercrash is just icing on the cake.

    And while not actually good Color Panic is better than it has any right to be for Rook. It's the worst fork for him -- but it's still a fork. Thus he should buy it in pools lacking any other forks. even if he has to purposefully whiff with a pair of Color Panics to get a pair of + :psblack:s in a single turn. It also has some nonobvious synergies with his pressure rush and general :psfist: vulnerability. Picking Purple allows Rook to reduce the number of :psorb:s his opponent can play leaving them more vulnerable to Rook's looming big gem, while an opponent hitting Rook with a Color Panic (purple) will often make Rook discard a purple character chip that he didn't have the arrows to play on his turn anyways. Alternately, Rook can pick Red and thereby reduce his opponent's ability to hit him with :psfist:s.

    Color Panic is better than you think for Rook.
     
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