Fair Fight - Or Foul Play?
BATTLEDOME - When I wish to fight in the two player Battledome, I usually wander
towards the Battledome Chat. If I'm lucky, I'll find someone with similar stats
who is willing to fight. Often there are "rules" in the fight, which are supposed
to make the fight "fair". However, in many cases, I feel they have the opposite
One or both of the parties involved set these "rules", which they are both
supposed to abide in a fight. To enforce rules, some users have 'cheap' lists
of people who broke the rules in battles, and others threaten to 'withdraw'
if any rule is broken - in other words, stop participating in the battle and
force the other party to give up.
Here are a list of common rules to be set:
No Chia Flour
No Hidden-Tower/Smuggler's-Cove Weapons
No One-use Items (Snowballs, Battlecards, Muffins, etc.)
I was once in a battle with someone who I will simply refer to as "Scooby".
At the time, my battle pet, Taylorkrindel, was a Pteri. When I challenged her,
she Neomailed me all of the rules which are listed above. Being more naive then,
I accepted. It turns out her Elephante was equipped with an Elephante stun ray
and ultra steel attack tusks (each do about 8 icons of damage). She knew that
I didn't have an Elephante, therefore I didn't have those weapons, and that
I wasn't a Kacheek or Lupe, who also have powerful weapons. But she conveniently
prevented any defence I might have against her attack ; she prevented hidden
tower (not that I have any) and 1-time-use weapons, which might have had equal
or greater power, she prevented freezing, which would have given myself an advantage.
Not that I'm angry at Scooby - she outsmarted me, and taught me a lesson I have
yet to forget, but do you think that the rules were really 'fair'.
What one should do is prepare for anything and everything. Any strategy has
a good counter-strategy, and putting rules is just an easy way of getting out
of making that counter strategy. Scooby only prepared to fight against a certain
type of opponent, and ensured that she would win whenever she fought that type
of opponent. I try to be as ready as possible for anything as I can be with
the limit of 8 weapons equipped to a pet, and my resources.
Here are my opinions on these 'rules' one by one:
I don't really consider this a rule, but I wholeheartedly believe in this.
I don't want an opponent who is too hard or easy. Not only do higher stats make
a pet more powerful, it also indicates how much wealth the owner has. If the
other pet has higher stats, the owner can probably get more expensive (and better)
weapons. And I can always find out what the stats of the other person is before
I agree to battle, so I won't be in the dark in that way at least.
No Chia Flour
I have better things to spend my Neopoints on then Chia Flour, and I have
no desire to cause another Neopian to buy an expensive paint brush or morphing
potion - and I certainly don't like the people who do get a kick out of wasting
another person's work. However, those nasty people who do want to throw Chia
Flour will not care what you want, and will ignore any rule against it, but
I could write a small article on that topic alone. Let's move on.
Thus far I do not have use any Hidden Tower or Smuggler's Cove weapons, so
this rule doesn't apply to me. But really, I find it redundant. If your opponent
has similar stats to you, then they probably are able to afford similar weapons.
If you can't afford Hidden Tower weapons, they probably can't afford them either.
And even so, there are a number of Hidden Tower weapons which are lousy. This
rule won't do much harm, and there is a chance that someone will spend a lot
more on weapons then stats and thus overpower a Neopet of lower wealth. But
I even with my hidden-tower free arsenal, I have beaten some of the 1-player
challengers who do have HT weapons, and I believe I could put up quite a fight
against 2-player challengers with the same items.
Some people call freezing 'cheap'. Personally, I think these people are just
those who got outsmarted by a good battler. It is the most powerful attack below
the hidden tower and smuggler's cove level, so if you want to play 2-player
and can afford to freeze opponents, you should.
First of all, it is not cheap in the literal sense. I don't know what Hypno
Helmets go for these days, but I bet they're worth at least 150K, if not a lot
more. Freezing Potions are even more costly. The Frost Cannons either stink
or have large price tags, and even the best cannot be depended on. Most other
freezing items or abilities are one-use-only, unreliable, expensive, or a combination.
The people who put rules against freezing are avoiding buying one of these items
for their own use, and they are the ones who should be dubbed 'cheap'.
The other day on the BD Chat, somebody claimed that freezing on the first
round was 'cheap', but freezing on the second or later rounds was not. They
did not give any reason for this conclusion. The only potential explanation
which makes sense to me is that if you freeze somebody immediately, have them
at your mercy in round two, and finish them off, the fight will be only two
rounds long and rather disappointing.
But there is a counter strategy for this. When I fight against someone who
I think is a good fighter, I automatically assume they are going to freeze me
on the first round. I'm not going to let them get the upper hand, and the best
defence against freezing is to freeze THEM at the same time, so they can't take
advantage of me. We'll both be frozen, and nothing will happen in the next round.
Sometimes my assumption is wrong, and I get to strike them down when they are
frozen. I'll win the battle, but it'll not be a very satisfactory win. But it
is the best way to prevent that from happening to me.
No One-Use Items
I feel a little sympathy with this cause. Snowballs, Battlecards, Downsize
Power Plus, Live Giver/Amulet of Life/Lucky Robots Foot, Terror Stones, Clockwork
Grundos, and Muffins are hideously powerful, but most Neopians can afford them
at least a few times - especially snowballs. In combination with freezing, these
can make a battle much shorter.
However, I am against this rule as well. Some people would indeed call me
'cheap', but I'm out to win a battle, or at least give my toughest. And I will
not begrudge an opponent who uses these items against me. After all, as always,
there is a defence
First of all, snowballs, battlecards, clockwork grundos, and muffins are most
dangerous when they are used in the round you're frozen. As said before, freeze
them so that they can't get at you that way.
Now that you have the factor of freezing out of the way, one-use items are
much easier to combat. The abilities Burrow and Sink will work wonders to stop
powerful blasts. Often your opponent will fierce attack or berserk you while
using two one-use snowballs/battlecards/muffins/clockwork-grundos. Their defence
is zero that round. The effect of items like Attack Forks, Lost Desert Daggers,
Wand of the Air Faerie, Grand Lightning Beams, Hand Painted Scarabs, and so
forth, will take a maximum toll on them, even if you don't fierce-attack/berserk.
And if you're Burrowing or Sinking at the time, then they can't do a lot of
harm to you at that time.
For the more specialised one-use items, Downsize Power Plus, Terror Stones,
and Live Giver/Amulet of Life/Lucky Robots Foot, there are different strategies
to resist them. Downsize Power Plus will defend ALL icons of ALL types, but
only one can be equipped at a time, so it will only be for one round (unless
you're up against a one-player challenger, who can use it whenever and as often
as they wish). Terror Stones are freezing items, so treat them like such. Life
Giver, Amulet of Life, and Lucky Robots Foot all heal the user back to full
hp. That just means you have to bust more hit points, and you should have your
own scorchstone or other healing item handy. Nothing is mission impossible.
Setting rules is the easy way out of making a sound strategy. Anything, and
I mean anything, can be at least partially countered in the Battledome. It will
often mean that you have to part with some money to make the defence The Battledome
is not a hobby for those who don't want to spend Neopoints If you want to keep
costs to a minimum, stick to one player fights. But even there, do you think
the Pant Devil, Kauvara, or the Snow Faerie will care if you don't want to be
frozen? Or that the Ghost Lupe cares whether or not you want snowballs thrown
Some people feel that the battle is boring if a well-placed move ends it quickly.
However, I am quite reckless, and I am proud to fight opponents stronger then
I am, and sometimes lose. If I just kept on fighting the Chia Clown all the
time, there would be no challenge. However, I do try to win, and if it's by
freezing, or snowballs, so be it. Two pets charging each other with a couple
of Grand Lightning Beams or Lost Desert Daggers is not that interesting. It
makes it a fight of stats, not wits.
Contrast that to a battle where there are no handicaps. The battle might open
up with the two pets freezing each other in self-defence, and using a basic
weapon like a Grand Lightning Beam or Hand Painted Scarab, and the pet with
lower hp draining life. The next round, they are both frozen, and quickly move
into round three. Pet A might throw the sticky snowballs they had reserved in
case they did manage to freeze Pet B without getting frozen, but Pet B will
burrow at the time, and get a nice amount of damage out of their Hand Painted
Scarab and Lost Desert Dagger as Pet A was fierce attacking. Next round, Pet
B will use the Hand Painted Scarab and Lost Desert Dagger along with a Sink,
but Pet A successful froze him/her with Fiery Gaze. Pet A will have already
have used their snowballs, so instead s/he simply will use a Hand Painted Scarab
and Grand Lightning Beam and fierce attack in the round Pet B is frozen. Pet
B will only have a handful of hp left at the end of the frozen round. But on
the last round, Pet B will use the Honey Potion and snowball s/he had, managing
to finish off Pet A just as Pet A will knock off the last hp of Pet B with their
arsenal. Thus the battle will be a draw.
The above battle is a little hard to follow, but both sides are using what
strategy they feel is right. It's unpredictable - but that's what makes it fun.
Both pets have a challenge, and if either Pet A or Pet B would win, then the
victor will feel three times as proud then if they would use one or more of
the handicaps frequently placed in battles.
Author's Note: I realise there will probably those who disagree with me. I
am open to debate on this topic, but if all you want to do is send
me an angry Neomail, I recommend instead you go write a better article
and submit it to firstname.lastname@example.org.