Quick Stat: Samurai Edit
|Tier 1||Tier 2||Tier 3||Tier 4|
Tier 2: Samurai+ Edit
To Upgrade from Samurai to Samurai+, you need 4 Samurai and 75 Dragon Coins.
Tier 3: Samurai++ Edit
To Upgrade from Samurai to Samurai++, you need 4 Samurai+ and 300 Dragon Coins.
Tier 4: Samurai+++ Edit
To Upgrade from Samurai to Samurai+++, you need 4 Samurai++ and 1500 Dragon Coins.
Strategy: Samurai Edit
The French Column Tactic: Samurai Edit
(A Devious Rogue special) Edit
In the 18th Century, the famous French general Napoleon devised a tactic that would help him conquer Europe and defeat coalition after coalition of other European powers. The tactic was known as the French Column - if you killed the guys in at the front, the guys behind would simply take their place and keep marching.
In a similar fashion is the true potential of the Samurai brought out. When two Samurai are adjacent to each other, and one moves in front of the other, this forms a "column" of Samurai. The trigger mechanic almost ensures that no matter what your opponent does, the square occupied by the forward Samurai will have one of your Samurai in it at the end of their turn. Thus, if you fork two enemy champions with a Samurai column, at least one of those enemy champions will die to your Samurai. (Unless they can check you, throw a commet at you or some such)
Samurai will also steadily trigger again and again, cutting through columns of enemy pieces if left alone for multiple turns. The best way to exploit this is to make a series of other highly threatening moves with your other pieces, so that your opponent is forced to deal with two threats at once - if you move a piece to check the enemy while a Samurai is poised to trigger, the enemy can deal with the check, or they can deal with the Samurai, but usually not both. After triggering, Samurai can follow up with a regular diagonal attack. Sometimes this lets them straight-up cut through a minion line and kill enemy champions.
Samurai columns can breach deadlocks that would be impassable for many other minions. For example, Soulkeepers can turn enemy minions into Ghosts indefinitely, no matter how many more minions turn up to avenge the minions that were turned into ghosts. Threaten a Soulkeeper with a Samurai Column on their diagonal, however, and their Soulkeeper will be forced to back down or die - if they convert the forward Samurai, the Samurai behind will trigger, killing the newly minted ghost and be able to move diagonally to take the SK. Other such pieces include Lillith and Dryad.
Samurai are weak against Pyromancers in particular, and also against Rangers and Fire Elementals since these pieces can all kill without leaving an enemy piece behind, thus denying Samurai the opportunity to trigger. They are also weak against board-control pieces like Sylphs and Air Elementals since they can be peacefully blown away.
You want at least 2 Samurai on different coloured squares so you can form a column. 4 Samurai gives you more flexibility and, if lined up correctly, can make three columns in quick succession, forcefully cutting through enemy ranks. 4 Samurai also allows you to make multiple threats with Samurai once one of them starts rampaging.
Tier Preference: Samurai Edit
(A Devious Rogue special) Edit
Samurai are useful at all tiers, with each additional cost paying for something extra.
At the basic level, Samurai function as is - they're not too expensive and you can run an entire line of them if you wish. The no. 1 player in the game has done this many times, in fact.
With the first upgrade, Samurai gain the ability to move two spaces diagonally with their first move - this makes them more adept at rapidly controlling parts of the board and quickly reinforcing forward minions. The promoted Ninjas also become more mobile.
At the third tier, Samurai gain the ability to retreat, which can be invaluable against many threats. The backward retreat also allows Samurai to voluntarily escape colour lock in order to form more columns. The Ninjas reach almost full potential at ++, since they can now threaten 3 squares orthogonally without pause (eliminating the move-only blindspot at +). Samurai at this tier are expensive and will typically trade unfavourably against opponents, but the opportunity gains may sometimes be worth it.
At the forth tier, Samurai gain the ability to move forward two squares, no matter where they are. This allows them to even more rapidly reinforce other pieces, make threats, or sieze opportunities in general. The Ninjas become more mobile, but don't gain any new threat squares. Samurai at this tier are also very expensive to run multiple of, as it is highly likely they will trade unfavourably against other minions.
Strength: Samurai Edit
Promotes to Ninja when it reachs the oponent's side, a powerful unit. Only minion unit with attacking trigger ability, which allows all kinds of crazy tactics:
- Using an Enchantress to enchant the Samurai, then pushing it towards the oponent's line with WindMage or Harpy (or Portal).
- Getting a unit with swapping abilities (Wizard, Ghast, Ghost, SoulKeeper...) close to a unit with no melee attack, and swap with a Samurai. Kill 2 oponent's units the next turn.
- Destroying Pawn diagonal lines, and pretty much any unit with no diagonal and orthogonal melee attack.
- Making your oponent choose between losing way more than a couple units.
- Strong around other Samurai, especially when forming a Samurai line.
- Combining with freeze or petrify to allow massive advantage since opponent cannot move these piece(s) away
Weakness: Samurai Edit
Slightly expensive, only move diagonally forward (Cannot move horizontally), and can't move vertically forward either except its passive ability. Can't move backwards until ++ and onwards. The passive ability can also be a drawback against a unit such as bomber since 1 value for 3 value is not a good trade.