Wednesday, April 13, 2011

Munchkin Strategy: Orc

An Orc card says this:

An orc who is hit with a curse can always choose to ignore the curse and lose a level instead - unless he's already at level 1.

When an orc fighting alone defeats a monster by more than 10, he goes up an extra level.
On the surface, these abilities seem to be superficial and not that powerful. Lose a level? What idiot prefers to do that instead of absorbing a curse? Extra level if defeating more than 10? Sounds either useless or extremely hard!

But, to a skilled Munchkin player, becoming an orc can be a powerful strategy in both early and late game.

So here are some basic strategy playing as Orc:
  1. During early games, be careful in putting down some of your powerful items to reduce chances of getting them cursed. Use your discretion.
  2. If you can go up a level (via GUAL or selling items or Looking For Trouble with low level monster), do it. This then gives you a buffer to be able to take Curses from people.
  3. Once you are at a level 3 or 4, then you can pretty much put down all your items. This just a good buffer that you have to be Cursed 3 times in a row to be a level 1 where you have to start applying Curses.
  4. When you are at a state where you have so many items, you pretty much want to refuse all Curses that remove your items (with some minor exceptions, depending on your  momentary strategy). An example will be that if you are have a Big item in play and you happen to be have another Big item in your hand and someone Curses you with "Lose Your Big Item", I would probably take the Curse and NOT lose a level.
  5. If you can, hold at least 1 GUAL card in your hand. So if you lose a level because of refusing a Curse, you can get it back immediately. If you get the Magnificent Hat or Sandals of Protection then you are pretty much golden as far as Curses go. 
  6. Because of this advantage, an Orc will usually accumulate lots of items and become powerful because of the bonuses, but with a weaker/weakest level. This allows the Orc player to get lots of charity cards and then he can gain levels by selling items that he does not need in the beginning of his turn.
  7. During the later stage of the game, a higher level Orc should keep a low level (like level 1 or 2) Monster in their hand. Once the Orc player is at level 8, if his combat strength is 10 or more beyond the monster, the Orc player can gain an extra level - which means that he can win the game. Doppelganger is a killer card to have at this stage.
  8. Race - Class combo: A wizard - orc is very potent! Not only you can refuse Curses, but you can Charm Monsters to get tons of Treasures! Bard is probably my second choice to get the selection of Treasures.
So there you go, some basic Orc strategy. A smart Orc player can be very powerful early in the game and then later on switch to a different Race (like Gnome - using the illusion charm) to finish the game. Or be an Orc late in the game to utilize the extra level gained! Whichever your strategy is, being an Orc can be very very powerful if used smartly.

Some threats:
  1. An Orc is not immune to theft. So a thief in play can always try to steal the Orc's items. A low level thief will always try to steal your items. Of course, if you have the Helmet of Peripheral, then you are immune to their stealing and backstabbing attempts.
  2. The weakest point of an Orc is at the early game, when the player is at level 1. So if you are playing against an Orc player, curse him early!
  3. Hard to win, because an Orc player can be Cursed repeatedly and keep on losing a level (if he chooses). Refusing a Curse is not always worth it - so depending on your strategy, some times it is OK to take a Curse.
  4. Other player will usually try to kill an Orc - so the Orc player will lose all his items (death) and become significantly weak(er). Or use a Monster that has Bad Stuff to remove the Race.
So there you have it - powerful race, an Orc is!

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