Wednesday, March 24, 2010


Special abilities: Makes inorganic ghosts that are immune to spells and stun enemies. Destroys an enemy, or ally, within 4 spaces by exploding, causing 4 damage in all surrounding squares. Can sacrifice an unit to gain two souls to use for it's spells.

Welcome back to THE UNDERDOG! The past week of Zatikon play brought out the nature of an underdog so loathed that even the other pieces won't play with him: The Diabolist! Don't be fooled by his power, deep down the Diabolist is nothing but a glorified sycophant, desperate to be liked by Warlocks and Necromancers, but lacking the coolness to hang. Simply put, the Diabolist has no friends. Why? He kills them all.

So who is able to fight alongside this temperamental snob of death? To start, lowly tacticians seem to be his favorite pushover. Maybe they look up to his superior intellect? Maybe the are traitors to another army? Maybe they want to die?

There is one "friend" to the Diabolist, but only in the sense that someone who kills his friends would define "friendship". The lonely Channeler. See, the Channeler is not a team player; he's just a ball hog. Just like the Diabolist growing up, when things didn't go his way he took his toys back and went home. "Warning: does not play well with others"- Mrs. Burntwitch, grade 1. In this behavior, the Diabolist and Channeler are best friends, so it's not a problem for the Diabolist if his friend the Channeler wants to use ALL seven actions EVERY turn.

But really, with a bunch tacticians and two almost unlikely friends, who else wants to join this? Who would be willing to face an Abjurer, Wizard, Warlock or Dragon with this as backup! Answer: no one of course, but there are plenty willing to get away from them as fast as possible. Horsemen, Cavalry, even Elephants; anything to get the heck away from the Diabolists mood swings.

Finally, let's not forget the Quartermaster. With a battle at hand, this guys wants nothing more but to pony-up on that donkey and fight fire-breathing dragons then have to have another bowl of soup thrown in his face with "next time I will explode you" haunting his sleep.

So, let's go over... Turn 1, deploy Quartermaster, Diabolist, and Channeler. Turn 2, deploy Tactician, Sacrifice Tactician and gain 3 actions, move Channeler and deploy Cavalry, then deploy second Cavalry and Tactician. ... Boom! That's how it's done son! Save the one last Rider in reserve, just to capture the castle in case Diabolist has to blow up his friend, and the rest.

Against the computer, maybe up to level 40 or so, blasting pieces with a blitzkrieg of Channeler and Cavalry seems to give you an advantage. If the Diabolist allows the Channeler to live long enough to be within range of the enemy Gateguard, a saved up release of energy (that's what she said) is usually enough to kill him with an added Cavalry attack.

Diabolist has a name for player vs player: Sacrifice. Channeler takes down 3 guys to be killed next turn? Perfect move. Attack with Cavalry, kill a piece, explode Cavalry to kill another. Perfect move. More ghosts. Let the Quartermaster or Tactician take the castle, or blow them up next to the Gateguard for the diabolist to walk in.

Sometimes the Diabolist tags along with a Warlock or Necromancer. Really, it's no act of pity, as the Warlock and Necromancer always seem to out survive the Diabolist. White Wizards avoid him altogether, although the Magus can be helpful with feeding spirits of will o' the wisps. War Elephants have had their place, even two of them deployed second turn can be threatening, but Diabolist is usually a bit too happy to let them die.

You might not want to hang out with him in real life, or even in a chat room, or even play Zatikon against him, but the Diabolist isn't so bad if you're in control. Just don't try to change him. Sure, ghosts are nice, throw 'em out there at any opportunity, and sometimes it's possible to resist killing your own guys. Still, when the smoke clears, and body parts are identified, there's no doubt the Diabolist will still have no friends.

1 comment:

  1. well written, since I am over 200 single player I don't get much of a chance to use him, but i sure have had some fun with the Diabolist and Wizard in 2v2...

    not to bad of a army at all