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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Caveat: This post contains gameplay speculation and personal opinion. It may also contain adult comedy and sarcasm. It is not advice and is solely for entertainment and informational purposes.
[This hero was buffed after this review. Details have been updated, however, the review remains the same]
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:
|Hero||Mana Speed||Damage||Minions||Status Effects|
|Santa Claus||Slow (12 tiles)||Deals ||Summons 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 Claus||Slow (12 tiles)||Deals 150% damage to all enemies||Summons 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.|
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.
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:
|Hero||Mana Speed||Damage||Minions / Fiends||Status Effects / Other|
|Costumed Santa Claus||Slow (12 tiles)||Deals 150% damage to all enemies||Summons 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.|
|Telluria||Average (10 tiles)||Deals 90% damage to all enemies||Summons 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.|
|Viscaro||Slow (12 tiles)||Deals 190% damage to all enemies||Summons 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.|
|Saoirse||Slow (12 tiles)||Deals 315% damage to Target and NB||–||Target and NB get -54% defense for 3 turns.|
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).
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.
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]
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