Santa Claus Vs. Costumed SC (Empires and Puzzles) Review

Santa Claus Empires and Puzzles Hero Card

Since his Costume release, Santa Claus has enjoyed a new lease of life in Empires and Puzzles. But does he really warrant all this attention? Or is he just a sponger, living off his Family ties?

We’ve all witnessed this saga play out like some cheap gangster flick;

“We need a new hitman, someone with the Cahoonas to really let the fish fly.”

“Hey boss, I’ve got just the guy. Meet, Mr. Pengi… ha ha, yea Pengi, he’s what ya need.”

But while The Family were busy protecting their borders from rivals, the Government (SG) were busy collecting Taxes.

According to early reports, Santa, the Head of the Syndicate, got off lightly.

See, he had agreed to testify against his own Family and was initially placed in the Witness Protection Program.

Soon enough it was all over social media, Santa wasn’t selling out the whole Family, just Krampus…

-and, Mr. Pengi’s name was being kept well out of it.


Some say it was because Mr. Pengi knew where all the bodies were buried, -some say it was because he was ratting to the Feds, too.

Either way, when it was all over, everything slowed down.

Production was paused, The Family never met in the same place, and nobody was quite sure…

Was Santa Claus still the Boss, or not?

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This post may contain speculation, personal opinion, and adult comedy. It is not advice and is solely for entertainment and informational purposes.


Santa Claus – Old Cynic review

Jokes aside, I rated Santa Claus a Warrior at first glance over the Christmas period. Today, I want to take the opportunity to dig a little deeper and make a few comparisons.

Like anything in life, the battle is really with ourselves, so let’s see how Santa matches up to his own reflection:

This Hero was buffed after this review. Details have been updated, however, the review remains the same

HeroMana SpeedDamageMinions Status Effects
Santa Claus
Slow (12 tiles)Deals 150% 200% damage to all enemiesSummons an Elf Minion for each ally with 7% HP and 10% attack inherited from the caster.All enemies get -34% attack for 3 turns. & All enemies get -44% defense for 3 turns.
Costumed Santa ClausSlow (12 tiles)Deals 150% damage to all enemiesSummons an Elf Minion for each ally with 7% HP and 10% attack inherited from the caster.All enemies get -24% attack for 4 turns. & All enemies get -54% defense for 4 turns. – Santa Vs. Costumed Santa

First, we have to acknowledge the recent Winter Family Nerf, resulting in a reduction of the Family Bonus buff, but more importantly, a reduction in core Minion HP.

Santa’s Minions are now only worth 7% HP, whereas before, they were 10%.

Onto the Special itself, and the only difference here is the Status Effect.

Costumed Santa Claus has an impressive ailment, inflicting -54% Defense to all enemies for 4 turns.

-Not only does Costumed Santa increase the level of Defense-Down, but he also increases the length of its impact (from 3 turns to 4 turns).

Finally, the original Santa Claus was a Monk:

Talent: WITHSTAND ~ +30% chance to resist negative status effects.

Whereas Costumed Santa Claus is a Sorcerer:

Talent: DELAY ~ +15% chance to drop the mana generation of the enemy by -50% for 2 turns after dealing damage. The effect is applied at the end of the turn.

Looking at these two in isolation, Costumed Santa is clearly superior.

Santa Claus Empires and Puzzles Hero Card Details
Costumed Santa Claus – Empires and Puzzles

Costumed Santa Claus Vs. The E&P Universe

As Costumed Santa Claus is (in my opinion) the better of the two, it makes sense to pit him against the rest of the E&P universe.

That said, who do you compare Santa Claus with? He does so much, -he’s not just a specialist, he’s an allrounder.

Here’s what came to mind:

HeroMana SpeedDamageMinions / FiendsStatus Effects / Other
Costumed Santa ClausSlow (12 tiles)Deals 150% damage to all enemiesSummons an Elf Minion for each ally with 7% HP and 10% attack inherited from the caster.All enemies get -24% attack for 4 turns & All enemies get -54% defense for 4 turns.
TelluriaAverage (10 tiles)Deals 90% damage to all enemiesSummons a Minion for each ally with 9% HP and 13% attack inherited from the caster.All allies regen 274 HP over 2 turns & All enemies get -24% mana gen for 2 turns.
ViscaroSlow (12 tiles)Deals 190% damage to all enemiesSummons a Fiend for all enemies with 60% attack and 45% health absorbed from the victim.Will Summon a Fiend for an enemy if they Summon Minions by Special Skill.
SaoirseSlow (12 tiles)Deals 315% damage to Target and NBTarget and NB get -54% defense for 3 turns. – Santa Vs. Costumed Santa

Santa does a lot; he hits all enemies for a reasonable amount (although weak for Slow), he pseudo heals with his Minions, reduces the impact of enemy attacks, and also reduces their defenses by a significant amount.

So where does his value actually lie?

For me, it’s the Minions and Defense-down.

I’ve looked, and can’t find another 5-Star Hero who reduces Defense by such a large portion (to all enemies).

There are a few we all know of, the likes of Zekena, Frigg, Agrafena, Morel, and C.Vivica. But -54% to all?

Santa Claus – Special Skills (Empires and Puzzles)

When Santa does go off, he really can impact a battle, but waiting on a Slow charge for Minions and -Defense, isn’t ideal.

Also, his most devastating qualities can be mitigated by common Heroes.

Still, there’s more to consider.

Costumed Santa was introduced with the other new Xmas Costumes, and a certain Mr. Pengi. And, it’s when placed in this Family setting that he really shines.

The Minions he kicks out are Grade-A Steroids for Mr. Pengi. And the Defense-down is the perfect primer for Mr. Pengi’s (or another hitter’s) explosive onslaught.

He also contributes to the Winter Family bonus, although this has since been nerfed.

Costumed Santa Claus Hero Grade (Empires and Puzzles)

My final thoughts:

Santa in many ways reminds me of Telluria, -he does so much, making him useful on Defense and Offense.

However, underneath it all, he gives us the tried-and-tested, Defense-Down.

Here’s the difference since Christmas:

  • Power Stats improvement across the board with his Costume
  • Appreciable Defense-down improvement
  • Significant Family Bonus value (pre-nerf but relevant)
  • Outstanding synergy when played with other Winter Heroes (particularly, Mr. Pengi)

And a final point of reference

While Santa’s Special is powerful, due to its nature, it’s more manageable than some other Specials we’ve seen.

-That’s because its most dangerous element is a Status Ailment which can be stopped by a Malosi type of Hero, or Cleansed by a Rigard type of Hero, or reversed by a Freya type of Hero.

That said, with all the devastating Heroes now in E&P, Costumed Santa could easily get slept on (as I did), in order to prioritise other Heroes.

And that could cost you.

So for my grading, the question is:

Is this Hero’s Special capable of/likely to change the outcome of a battle?


If not, do they still bring enough to the party to help defeat the deities?


Old Cynic’s Hero Grade: Archangel

What are your thoughts? Did I get it wrong, or miss something? Let me know in the comments below.

[Please always check in-game Hero Cards to confirm details and never chase Heroes]

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  1. Hi old cynic, santa is back in town, i put him as left flank with ludwig tank and milena to the right, they do a good job, so yes, Santa can work togheter a multihitter better than most.

  2. Thank you for this review.
    I was looking forward to it.
    C. Santa Claus is the only legendary character I have in my winter family. He would like to raise him if he can afford it.
    I look forward to other articles in the future.
    thank you

  3. I like him a lot and use him in costume form with penguin and krampus so my team gets max synergy with attack up, def down and the death fish cannon. Works much better on attack than def though since it can be controlled more when they go off.

  4. Hi Old Cynic!

    I read this review (3 times now!) while watching LITTLE WOMEN, and so, it would not be an exaggeration to say that this is quite a roller coaster ride for me! I am crying because of the film, and I am laughing because of the your prose: IT is NOT a beautiful picture: me crying and laughing at the same time! haha (and although the picture of my tear-stricken-laughing-face is bereft of anything charming and pretty, the gangster scene that you created for the Winter Family is menacing and dark and sublime!)

    When I read your review of the winter family, and found that Santa did not get a good grade, I was quite sad, because I just gave him the precious rings of power and all the other luxuries that were never to be parted lightly. Nevertheless, Santa just did what he was supposed to do (and oftentimes, especially when the tiles were not totally against him, do it rather well, to my shock, that is to be followed by guilt for being an ingrate), despite my misplaced regrets and total lack of enthusiasm for his efforts. His defense down (and minions for all) coupled with Cristobal’s second charge, Mr. Pengi’s fish barrage, and the Dark Lord’s ultra violet ray, just ends all life forms. And he does all this in a non-maxed form! This review just makes me more excited to fully max him up and his costume: I can’t wait to get hold of his -54% defense down and reign supreme in this universe! (well, not really a likely scenario, but fools do dream foolish dreams!)

    Apologies again for raining your page with words (much like, rather, in the manner of Pengi’s cruel predilections), and many many thanks for this review. I have to remind myself not to watch anything sentimental while I read your essays; the combination is not good for my heart!

    Your servant,

    who is tired from crying and laughing,

    although, you are not to be blamed for either,

    (well, for the latter, you certainly play the most crucial part!),


    1. Hey Chrestomanci!

      I have to admit, when I first saw Santa’s Costume I wasn’t impressed. -I didn’t take the time to evaluate it because I already had my hands full with Mother North, Krampus, and Mr. Pengi.

      Sometimes there’s a lot of heroes to consider and so due attention isn’t given to each in isolation.

      I recently covered like 15 heroes in the War Of The Three Kingdoms, reviewing each of them and giving them all a Hero Grade. -That’s a lot of new heroes to grade in one sitting (& they weren’t even released!).

      Anyway, not making an excuse, more explaining how it happens. But it’s great that he’s been doing a job for you, and now he has his own review to shine, -he is much better than I first thought.

      Sounds like you have an awesome team, Mr. Pengi is still an absolute nightmare.

      Keep laughing Chrestomanci, and thanks for visiting!

      1. Old Cynic,

        I actually read your review of the heroes that they will let loose for the three kingdoms, when you released it online. My initial thought was: if I were a rich man, yaba diba diba dum…

        But seriously, those heroes, at least as they appear now, are just bonkers; even the ones that you graded with “archangel” are actually scary characters.

        Anyway, thank you again for the review, and yes, the flightless bird is an absolute nightmare; I love him when he is on my side, but I definitely avoid going against him, especially if he is teamed up with Krampus and MN. Oh well, there will come a time when I would have to force myself to face him, but until then, I am very happy to be his friend. 🙂



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