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YMMV / Gems of War

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The YMMV tropes for the Match-Three Game game Gems of War.

  • Complacent Gaming Syndrome: Enforced. Troops can have their "rarity" increased by combining multiple copies of them together, but they can only gain levels by feeding them Souls. The problem is that, on average, you only gain 4 souls per battle (out of a cap of 40), whereas you need thousands to get a Troop card to its maximum of Lv.20. While there are troops that generate Souls via their spells, and others that raise your Soul cap you still have to pull those troops from chests, Trait them appropriately, and then start grinding.
  • Disk One Nuke:
    • Ranger is by no means unbeatable, but can be pretty damn scary, especially with a team setting him up. His ability deals a strong initial hit to a single target, and then deals damage randomly spread across the entire enemy team, boosted by remaining enemy troops. This little bastard can focus down priority targets and deal significant AoE damage to the entire enemy team at the same time. With the right Banner, he can also get his ability charged in as little as two matches, and if you add a helpful ally to provide the right gems on the board, getting those matches becomes that much easier. The reason he goes here instead of "Game Breaker" is that his AoE damage does not scale well; he's also relatively easy to One-Hit Kill in return.
  • Demonic Spiders / Boss in Mook Clothing:
    • Hydras. Designed to give you the middle finger whether you focus them down or not, their ability deals heavy damage split among all enemies... boosted by their missing life. And they are usually pretty tanky, with lots of life to spare. So basically, if you ignore them, you take repeated hits to your whole team. If you don't, and try to focus them down, you take one devastating hit that can easily wipe your whole team, at worst. And their traits (gain added life on 4-5 gem matches, deal damage to all enemies when receiving skull damage) just add extra middle fingers.
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  • Designated Hero: in Pan's Vale, Elwyn (the local Quest Giver and Spoony Bard) suggests you massacre the locals so that he can take inspiration for his next ballad from the bloodshed. It ends up mutating into a quest to defeat a local Daemon, but despite the scripted protests, you start out as nothing better than an invader.
  • Game-Breaker: There are actually a lot of cards that, if properly powered up, can dominate battles, even down to very basic Commons like the Goblin. But a few stand out:
    • Grave Knight: 11 Purple/Brown — Shattering Blow, "Destroy an enemy's Armor, and deal [4+Magic] Damage." It happens ...In That Order. As a result, a Lv.1 Grave Knight can One-Hit Kill anything with 4 Health or less — such as itself, since it does not start with greater-than-4 health until it's Lv.8.
    • Spider Queen: 9 Green/Purple — Web, "Reduce an enemy's Armor by [1+Magic], Web them and drain their Mana." The first bit isn't all that useful, since it won't actually do Hit Point damage, and the second just prevents them from attacking. The third? Instant Anti-Magic, reducing any troop's Mana stockpiles to 0. Hope you weren't depending on any given spell to turn the game around for you!...
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    • Paladin: 11 Yellow/Green — Justice, "Deal [0+Magic] damage to an enemy, Boosted by my Armor." Adding Armor to your characters is not that hard; there are actually a lot of characters that do so. This guy can get out of control real fast.
    • Almost any character whose spell reads "Explode X random Gems". This ability selects X random Gems and explodes them... which counts as matching them. In practice, these spells say, "Add a lot of mana to every Troop on my team, often enough to charge them completely." If the spell has other effects besides that... Well! The ability is so potent that it's been nerfed twice; first the mana accrued was reduced to 70%, and then again to 50%.
      • Princess Fizzbang set a new record for snowballing. Her ability Explodes all Green Gems on the board. It also increases a random skill on a random ally (she can be targeted) by [Magic + 1]. This can include her own Magic, making the increase to other stats even more dramatic when they happen. And she gains an extra turn... which, more often than not, she can use to cast the spell again. And she can Cherry-Tap the enemy while she does, because exploded Skulls do damage. Released on Monday, 4 Sept 2017, she was nerfed three days later so that she guarantees the extra turn but randomly chooses between Exploding all Greens and the random buff.
    • King Bloodhammer raises the bar for this trope. Most of the others can easily cross the One-Hit Kill threshold, but Bloodhammer's business is dealing out Total Party Kills. "Doomskulls" are a recent addition to the game which essentially deliver Critical Hits: it gives +5 damage and Explodes on match (see above). Bloodhammer turns all blue Gems into Doomskulls, which can easily lead to cascade multi-matches that slay each opposing character in sequence.
    • Divine Ishbaala currently defines the PvP meta. Being able to spawn a bunch of Skulls can be really handy, but her most significant asset is her final Trait: "All Divines on your team start the match with half their spell charged. This makes her the centerpiece of an absolutely dominant team which also features Infernus — "Deal a whole bunch of damage" — and Ubastet — "Basically, kill half the enemy team at once". All three characters are Legendary or higher, going a long way towards enforcing Power Equals Rarity.
    • Another potent team, and at much lower rarities, is the Rare Clockwork Sphinx, which boosts the team's Armor; Golden Cog, a Hero weapon which doubles a Troop's Armor; and the Forest Of Thorns Quest Giver Rowanne, who deals damage, split amongst the enemy team, equal to twice her Armor. This trio is color-balanced (each of them uses a unique pair of colors and do not overlap) and can easily handle teams which (on paper) are 50% stronger than them, while still having an empty slot on your team for the Troop Of The Week and whatever bonuses it provides. Their one downside is that you have to fire the spells in the order listed here, which requires 12 or 13 turns of matching.
  • Goddamned Bats:
    • Summoners. Their defensive kit and Mook Maker abilities make them the ultimate meat shield. His spell summons a Bone Daemon — which drags on the game by making you have to kill one more troop to win — and heals his allies. Bone Daemons in turn have an ability that deals damage, increases the drop-rate of attack gems (a double-edged sword, to be sure), and deals double damage while this buff is in play. The buff only lasts 8 turns, 4 of which are yours, so the Bone Daemon has a limited time to cast their ability again, but that one hit can be decisive. Lastly, the summoner has the trait "Orc Armour", a Game-Breaker on its own which reads "Gain 5 armour when I take damage to Life". That's not a one-off. It happens every time he takes damage and costs nothing to use in battle (once unlocked). Oh, and it's last trait gives it a random chance to summon yet another dude. All of this combined gets you an absurdly tanky character who makes their own team beefier and more populous.
    • Dryads. Another slightly less irritating defensive unit, they give an ally Barrier and bonus life, with a slight heal on top of that if the target's damaged. So basically, at equal levels, they negate the next two attacks aimed at their target - one through the Barrier, one through just plain soaking it up. Oh yeah, and they create Green Gems, thus setting up their Green allies at no additional cost every time they use the above ability. Not a direct middle finger, but it still makes the ability do three things at once, and slightly disadvantages you if you'd prefer other colours on the board.
    • Pretty much anything which has an ability that gives Barrier, or to a lesser extent which gives or restores or drains Armour or Health. Depending on the situation, level difference, and team composition, it can be just delaying the inevitable, but it still needlessly drags out the fight, especially since Barriers negate the whole next attack, irrespective of level. Most troops give Barrier through their spells... but there's one Mythic-Rare troop, Jotnar Stormshield, whose third Trait gives it to a random ally every time you make a 4+ match. A version of Jotnar serves as the Bonus Boss in the Dungeon; he has buffs to his spell... but not to this trait.
    • The Dwarven Gate is fairly common and can make PvP hell. Its spell gives Barrier (mentioned above) to all its allies, increases its own Armor, and gives mana to its allies, enabling them to dump their powerful spells faster and hampering your ability to mana-screw them. Its one weak point is that, because it doesn't Barrier itself, it will inevitably get whittled down... though expect that to take a while because it also has a Trait that reduces all incoming Skull damage by 50%. It also has no Attack value, which will slow down your opponent's offense until and/or unless buffed via allied spells, allied Traits, Kingdom bonuses or even Set Bonuses.
  • That One Boss:
    • Eternal Wulfgarok, the upgraded boss fought at the end of the Wednesday green dungeon, can be a real pain. He wields a One-Hit Kill ability called "Devour," which not only murders its target but adds its Skills (HP, Armor, Magic, Attack) to Wulfgarok's. Because this ability is bah-roken, it normally has drawbacks like only being useable once per battle or having a low probability of actually working. Eternal Wulfgarok's doesn't. Basically your only real options in terms of defeating him are 1) to Barrier your own team, as Devour for some reason is coded as dealing HP damage, or 2) to kill him before he can charge and fire it. Too bad he's the fourth and last member of a Lv.40 team which collectively has 158 Armor As Hit Points and 198 actual HP, can add Barrier to every member, and can heal 22 HP — even before E.Wulfgarok heals himself further by chowing down on one of your party members. For context, the above Rowanne combo is considered very powerful because she can dish out about 100 damage per cast.

Example of: