Hey everyone, welcome back to MetaManiacs! Today we are going to look at the fourth DLC, or “Deck Loadable Content” for the now rebranded UniVersus collectible card game, which is from the world of Mortal Kombat! It was way back in April when we saw the release of the Street Fighter DLC, and, if the current schedule holds, we will see Cowboy Bebop and another Soul Calibur VI DLC set before 2020 (finally) ends.
As we’ve seen before, each DLC set contains 4 new character cards and two copies each of a new foundation card and attack card for each of those characters, and Mortal Kombat is no exception. What’s quite unusual for 2020 is that, with offline play brought to a grinding halt, and with the massive delay in production, many of these cards are already getting play in online events, including our own league, so many of you will have seen, or even used, these cards already! But if you haven’t, or just need a refresher course, we’ve got you covered as we go over each of these cards.
First up is Earthrealm’s most prolific cop, Kurtis Stryker. Stryker is a very straightforward character with one major drawback. He is a 6 hander with 29 health and the air, death, and fire symbols. So he is a pretty beefy boy. Stryker is revolved around using attacks with the ranged keyword. So cards like Spirit Shotgun are a natural fit for him. But you can get even fancier and use something like Kikosho to be used again if it was blocked.
However, Stryker does have one glaring weakness. Namely, he cannot fuel his own response ability. You cannot use Stryker’s response ability after using his enhance because he commits himself. This was likely done to prevent abusive interactions, but regardless it means that he starts the game off with quite the handicap. Characters who cannot fuel their own abilities usually end up not doing well in the meta. But we have been proven wrong before, and UVS players are very creative so it will be interesting to see what players come up with.
To make up for his character card not triggering his response ability, his attack, Grenade Toss, does! This card is great for battering down the opponent as blocking the attack partially will still do some damage, and is a great lead-in for something like Spirit Shotgun.
Stryker’s foundation is where things can get tricky though. Since you will obviously be running lots of ranged attacks, you can get a serious damage boost to all of your ranged attacks with the enhance on Special Riot Control. Not only that, if you block an attack with a ranged attack and then play a ranged reversal, you can give that reversal a hefty damage boost of plus 4, and also return the block to your hand with Stryker’s character enhance.
Stryker does need some workarounds to be truly effective, but under the right circumstances he can definitely lay down the law on his opponent.
Next up is the Shaman Supreme, Nightwolf. A 7 hander boasting 20 health and the chaos, earth, and good symbols, Nightwolf has a unique ability set. His enhance is perfect for attacks with effects that activate when they are not blocked like Leap of the Loach, Radiant Wing, and Fight Like You Mean It. This forces the opponent into a damned if you do, damned if you don’t type situation and will force them to make their blocks very carefully. His response is also interesting. You can use it as a last-ditch effort to land one final attack for the kill. Conversely, since the ability can be used on either turn, you could also use it to block a lethal attack if you are really desperate and give you a chance to survive another turn.
Nightwolf’s attack, Tomahawk Swing, also has some pretty spicy possibilities. Not only does blocking this attack leave your opponent open for a bigger attack on the next swing, with one momentum this attack becomes something special. Whatever foundations you committed during the turn to play cards, including with Nightwolf’s character response, you can swap out with some fresh, ready face down foundations! Or if you aren’t feeling Nightwolf, this attack has some great potential under other characters with the same symbols. Try using this attack in D’Vorah off of Chaos for something wild!
Spiritual Connection is a card that only gets better the more you know about your opponent’s deck. If your opponent is playing a lot of strong combo abilities, use the first response to disrupt their gameplan and keep yourself in the fight. The second response though is great for decks that recur the same card over and over again. Giving you an extra foundation to help play blocks and make checks to survive to the next turn. Or even for Nightwolf’s character response if you really need help. This ability would have been great against a card like Shadow Slicer. Thankfully that card isn’t around anymore (and I say this as a Ken** player…), but it can still be effective against recursion of all kind.
Next is everyone’s favorite MK lady they’re afraid to admit they have a crush on (yeah, I’m talking to YOU. You know who you are), Sheeva! Since Sheeva’s reveal for the DLC set back in March she has also been added to Mortal Kombat 11 as a DLC character in Aftermath, the newest expansion to the game. In UVS Sheeva is a 4 hander just like her fellow Shokan, Goro. She also has 40 health just like he does, tying for the highest health character in the game. She also has the All, Water, and Evil symbols. Despite her not actually being evil in the games, but I digress.
Sheeva has the very unique ability of being able to add cards to her opponent’s card pool and use them as resources for her own abilities. Discarding a card to lock something into place to make it difficult for your opponent to play cards on their turn is extremely effective. Plus you can also discard one of those cards to draw a card and pump up an attack by 4 damage. This makes Sheeva a quasi 5 hander and forces you to make informed decisions about what to do with your hand and the opponent’s card pool. Sheeva also gets fantastic support from her fellow Shokan Goro’s card pool, as well as Jacqui. Air Ground Smash in Sheeva is absolutely bananas.
Furious Stomp is one of the best attacks based on pure value alone you can find. With 4 difficulty and 3 control, it isn’t particularly hard to play, plus it has a plus 0 mid-block, something that is always great to have on a card. Not only that, in reality Furious Stomp is a minimum 4 speed high for 8 damage, since your opponent will always have at least 3 face downs in their card pool due to Sheeva’s character response. Just like in the games, Sheeva’s stomp hits like a truck and if you aren’t ready for it, it can ruin your whole day. Trust me, I have the flashbacks from playing Mortal Kombat 9 to prove it (and now Mortal Kombat 1… ugh).
Royal Bodyguard is a perfect complement to Sheeva’s playstyle. It can prevent your opponent from playing key combo abilities allowing you to disrupt their turn, with the added bonus of continuing to make cards difficult for your opponent to play. The second enhance is also extremely helpful, especially if you are out of blocks and need to mitigate damage as much as possible.
Last is the most anticipated character in the set, as well as one of the most controversial cards in recent UFS/UVS memory. Bi-Han, the original Sub-Zero, was killed at the end of the first game and the Sub-Zero you know now is his brother, Kuai Liang. Bi-Han was resurrected through Quan Chi’s evil magic as Noob Saibot. (Which is the last names of Mortal Kombat co-creators Ed Boon and John Tobias backwards.)
Noob is the first gauge character to make an appearance in the DLC sets, but unfortunately, like the previous DLC sets, each comes with only one copy of each character card. This means if you want to play Noob you will have to buy 4 DLC sets to get 4 Noobs. Jasco has since made the announcement that future DLC sets will contain 2 copies of Gauge characters. This is really good to know, especially since we know that Seventh Cross will be receiving a DLC set at some point in the future.
So moving past that, what is so great about Noob? Well, one could make the argument that Noob is best used in decks… not Noob. A 7 hander with 20 health and the most canonically inappropriate symbols of Life, Order, and Void, Noob has another very unique ability. His enhance lets you pull a character card into your card pool to commit and freeze an opponent’s foundation, but his response is where the fun comes in.
When in the card pool and an attack is played you can flip Noob to give an attack plus or minus “X” damage, where X is the attack’s printed damage. On defense, this is a great ability for making a deadly attack immediately start at 0 damage. Even cards with huge damage pumps like Spirit Shotgun will have a tough dame making any serious dents after an effect like that. But on offense, you can give an attack a double damage boost.
This becomes extremely deadly when you consider unblockable attacks like Vengeance of a Fallen Angel. Playing a Noob and then a VFA will give your Spike deck a whopping 12 damage unblockable that your opponent will just have to deal with, or pray they have a Revoke in hand. Then, heaven forbid you have a few Shell of a Proud Man or Hunt for Spiders and Dragons on board, then we are talking a potentially 14, 16, or 18 damage attack that is completely unavoidable. Also, in case you were wondering, yes I play Spike.
Noob’s attack is Shadow Throw and it can do some pretty nutty stuff. A “hand trap” similar to Princess Parry, Shadow Throw can let you add a Noob to your card pool along with a Shadow Throw, discard an opponent’s incoming attack, and then play itself for 10 damage with the Noob’s character response. Plus since Shadow Throw is a… well, throw, getting that Gauge 5 is almost guaranteed. This two-card combo makes any opponent hurling attacks at Noob have to think twice about potentially getting 10 damage to the face.
Resurrected from Evil is Noob’s foundation and the last card we will be discussing in this DLC set. Also a great card for Ed and Ein, as well as D’Janette, this foundation can be a defensive powerhouse in the late game. The longer a game goes on, the higher chance you have of getting multiple characters into play, and the stronger this card becomes. Being able to shut down key pieces of your opponent’s offense, or shutting off their defensive pieces so you can safely land a finishing blow.
The Mortal Kombat DLC has a lot of amazing cards in it, not just for its own characters, but for other characters that utilize the support it offers. The Mortal Kombat DLC is already in stores now, so contact your friendly local game store or your closest Jasco Premier Store and pick up your copy today! (Plus, if you want to trade for Noobs let me know! Just kidding! *but not really*…)
Thanks for reading everyone! Keep it here at MetaManiacs for more content for your favorite TCGs, not just Universus! Be on the lookout for content for Dragon Ball Super, Final Fantasy, and more! Plus you can also check out our new podcast, The MetaManiacs Show (which yours truly made his debut on in the third episode), and if you’re kind enough to donate to our Patreon you can help us make more content for you to enjoy! The best part? It is only $2 a month!
We will see you again next time for the next DLC set for Universus, Cowboy Bebop, set to release at the start of September!