Build decks intended to keep combo continuously topped up, using no finishers.
Fights in Tight Spaces can be enjoyed in many ways. This guide explains basic strategy for a “glass cannon” style of deck, which concentrates on exploiting continuous high levels of combo. It’s most applicable to Deck Draft Mode, and works well at any difficulty level.
This guide is meant for experienced players. You won’t find much tactical advice here, it is assumed that with a suitable build, you can win the fights. A skilled player should be successful pretty consistently using this strategy with The Purist.
The idea behind a continuous combo deck, is to keep all combo requirement cards playable at all times, and maximize the damage of attacks which scale with combo.
Your deck will be composed of roughly 20 cards:
- Mostly Attack, with no End Combo*
- Zero Defence
- 3-5 Movement
- 3-5 Special
Although it may occasionally be necessary to take a hit, for the most part it can be avoided with a well balanced deck.
For detailed information on cards and enhancements, refer to the in-game Compendium.
*End Combo attacks are marked with a yellow X like this:
Your first choice in Deck Draft Mode will be which enhancement to take, from a random set of three. This can make a big difference in what type of cards are attractive during the draft.
- Increase Card Draw by 1
- Possibly the most valuable enhancement, there is no other way to increase card draw.
- Bonus Move
- Gain a Free Movement card each turn.
- Extremely useful for The Purist difficulty, which does not guarantee drawing a movement card.
- Combo Captain
- Increase maximum Combo by 5.
- Enough said.
- Special Serum
- Remove Combo cap. Lose all Combo if you play no Attacks in a turn.
- Legit choice for this build, lets you ignore combo upgrade fights in favor of other rewards. Annoying when combo gets reset though.
- Momentum Boost/Mastery
- Increase maximum and per turn Momentum by 1/2.
- Either of these enhancements are great, especially in the early game before any momentum upgrades have been earned.
- Increasing Strength
- Gain +2 Damage Modifier every 3 turns.
- Strong enhancement for almost any build.
If none of the top tier enhancements are offered, any of these can be useful:
- Strength for a damage advantage
- Apprenticeship, Card Sharp, or Fast Learner for a card choice advantage
- Bounty Hunter, Deep Pockets, Lean Decker, or Card Shredder for a cash advantage
- Fast Heal, Steel Body, or Toned Physique for a health advantage
- Emergency Move for The Purist who doesn’t have Bonus Move
- Bonus Combo sounds right for a combo build, but it’s not very helpful
- Twitchy or Versatility if nothing else is available
The remaining enhancements not mentioned, really aren’t useful for this build.
Movement is more important in the early game, where there are reward briefcases to collect for combo and momentum boost. Although it’s totally possible to be successful without any movement cards, they definitely make it easier. During the draft, look to add at least two cards with range 2 movement, even if not top tier. They can be deleted or replaced with something better later on.
|Dynamic Move||2||Hands down, the best movement card for this build. You’ll often want to move even when it’s unnecessary, just for the combo boost. Upgraded version boosts even more.|
|Shift||2||Great escape card, upgraded version allows moving past an enemy with no combo penalty. Two copies in the deck is fine.|
|Vault||2||Decent escape card, that allows vaulting over an obstacle with a combo and momentum boost. Upgraded version has zero momentum cost.|
|Slip||1||Another great escape card, that allows moving adjacent to an enemy with no combo penalty. Upgraded version has zero momentum cost. Two copies in the deck is fine.|
|Swap||1||Gives a combo boost when used to swap places with an enemy. Upgraded version has zero momentum cost.|
Less suitable for this build, but still potentially usable:
- Option Play is a unique card that lets you move or attack
- Commit has 0 momentum cost and the loss of all block is irrelevant
- Flip is sort of a cross between Shift and Vault but less useful
- Dash has nothing special to recommend it
- Tactical Retreat, Prime Mover, and Set Self are like Dash with some useless block bonus added
- Shimmy is kind of interesting, upgraded version has range 2
The remaining movement cards are less worthy of consideration.
None of these cards are strictly required, but any of the ones in the top tier can be great choices.
|Grapple||Possibly the best Special card. Allows auto-attack and turn-to-face enemies to be safely dealt with at close range.|
|Flurry||Super card for this build. Costs 3 momentum, but puts 3 Jab cards in your hand which can give it right back again. Upgraded version makes 4 upgraded Jab instead, really great.|
|Taunt||Target any enemy on the field to force an attack, or simply make it safe to move in front. Also cancels any special ability the target may have been planning to use.|
|Redirect||Can be used like Grapple to neutralize auto-attack and turn-to-face enemies. Like Taunt, cancels any special ability the target may have been planning to use.|
|Rising Strength||Powerful addition to any build, as long as you have the momentum to play it.|
|Rush of Blood||If you like living on the edge, this card boosts the damage of the agent and all enemies on the field for the rest of the fight. Upgraded version boosts even faster. Not a good choice if you take hits often.|
|Steel Self||Double the damage of the next attack (or next two attacks for upgraded version), what’s not to like?|
Less suitable for this build, but still potentially usable:
- Embolden, Heal Self, or Painkillers can be helpful if you’re having trouble avoiding damage. Probably a wise choice to take one of these if you don’t have Bonus Move enhancement
- Energy Booster or Flow State can be nice in the early game before any momentum upgrades have been earned. Less useful later on. Weaker momentum specials include Focus and Delayed Gratification.
- Change Tack, Close In, or Linking Move can be acceptable alternatives to cards in the Movement class
- Fancy Footwork is one of the better cards with Dodge ability
- Foresight or Ponder can be used to draw more cards if you have the momentum to support them
- Get Over Here can be fun, target any enemy on the field, moving them towards you can force enemies to attack one another, bring them into attack range, or just give you a position advantage.
- Intimidate is a pretty good emergency card, upgraded version stays in hand until you need it.
- Jolt is okay but there are better ways to build combo.
The remaining special cards are less suitable for a combo build.
Most of the cards in your deck will be in the Attack category. For this style of build you’ll want to focus on attacks that include movement of you and/or your target. Your deck should typically include:
- Two or three attacks that push the target away
- Two or three attacks that let you advance
- Two or three attacks with Stun
- Two or three throws
- Two or more cards that have attack range > 1
There is scope for quite a lot of variety in attack choices. Several attacks have a minimum combo requirement, but cost no momentum to play. With continuous combo style, the combo requirement is almost always met.
* – Attack damage scales with Combo value
|Hammerfist*||01/02||Hands down, the best attack card for this build. Try to have at least one copy of an upgraded Hammerfist in your deck, multiple copies works too.|
|Front Kick||01/02||Probably the best all around push attack. Flexible range, advance and push all in one.|
|Heavy Strike||01/02||Flexible range attack with advance, upgraded version has lower momentum cost.|
|Jumping Back Kick||1||Powerful push attack with no momentum cost, requires 4 combo to play.|
|Jumping Ground Punch*||2||Attack downed enemies for massive damage. Range 2 required. Card has Retain so stays in hand until needed.|
|Jumping Punch||2||Powerful attack with stun and advance, requires 5 combo to play. Range 2 requirement is the only real drawback.|
|Palm Strike||1||Basic attack which boosts the Damage Modifier on the following turn, effective for the rest of the fight. Upgraded version boosts even more.|
|Pocket Sand||1||Most versatile stun card, ignores block.|
|Shove||1||Very nice card for moving enemies around, and pushing them into the void.|
|Stagger||01/02||Flexible range push without advance, requires 4 combo to play (3 when upgraded).|
|Three Punch Combo||1||Adds 3 to combo counter. Loves Damage Modifier.|
|Unleash*||1||A triple strike attack (similar to Three Punch Combo) which has no base damage but scales with combo. Base momentum cost of 3, upgraded version is 2.|
|Wall Kick*||2||Super strong, but needs the right setup. Card has Retain, so it can wait in hand until the appropriate moment.|
The throw cards (Throw, Roll Throw, Shoulder Throw, Suplex, and Tackle) are not listed above, they are all great. The latter two are especially useful as they allow throwing an enemy into the void. Some enemies who cannot be pushed, can still be thrown!
Less suitable for this build, but still potentially usable:
- Throat Punch is an acceptable close range stun card, not as good as Pocket Sand because enemies can block it, but a lot more commonly found
- Hook Kick, Jab, and Split Kick can be useful in the early game before momentum upgrades are available
- Back Slam is pretty good, sort of a Swap/Push cross, but momentum 2 and can’t be used on enemies that resist push
- Charge is the only attack that advances more than 1 tile, but momentum 2 and range 2+ required
- Ground Punch, Shock and Spiked Stamp are Retain cards for attacking downed enemies, weaker than Jumping Ground Punch but easier to use
- Jump Kick and Double Jump Kick are okay but range 2 required
- Left Spin Kick and Right Spin Kick are decent but Shove is more flexible
- Push, Quick Kick, and Separate are all weak push cards but better than nothing if you don’t have a good selection of top tier push attacks
- Flash Kick, Power Push, and Rising Knee can be fun
- Spinning Back Fist draws more cards, great if you have the momentum to support it
- Stun Dart can be useful, range 2+ required
- Obliterate scales to huge combo damage, but its ultra high momentum cost and remove on play (single use) really limit its utility
The remaining attack cards aren’t as good. However, if you don’t get a Hammerfist in the draft, it may be worth taking a temporary combo finisher.
Choosing Your Mission Path
- Priority to momentum boost rewards until momentum is at least 5
- Priority to combo boost rewards unless Special Serum enhancement in use
- Priority to Gym visits until junk cards removed, and important upgrades secured (especially Hammerfist £120)
- All else being equal, choose a smaller room to fight in
Here are a few winning decks (The Purist difficulty) which use the strategy described in this guide.
This deck is not optimal, fairly poor luck with the draft and card/enhancement rewards. Several of the cards and most of the enhancements are not “top tier”. However it follows the guide, and it works.
Max momentum was at 5, and max combo at 18.
Enhancements are Toned Physique, Emergency Move, Momentum Boost, and Twitchy.
This run went pretty well, except Hammerfist didn’t show up until halfway through the Ninja mission. Most of the deck is top tier cards, and the enhancements are also excellent.
Max momentum was at 6, and max combo at 16.
Enhancements are Bounty Hunter, Momentum Boost, Versatility, Apprenticeship, and Increasing Strength.
Here’s one where everything went smoothly from the beginning; Apprenticeship is great for a first enhancement. Not a perfect deck, but very strong. By the end it was effortless to just wreck all enemies.
Max momentum was at 7, and max combo at 20.
Enhancements are Apprenticeship, Momentum Mastery, Bonus Move, and Fast Heal.
This example started out with Special Serum, which doesn’t give much benefit in the early game. The draft was weak, it was slow going until some of the junk cards were removed, and the first Hammerfist upgraded. But by the ninja mission it was starting to shine.
Max momentum was at 6, and max combo at infinity!
Enhancements are Special Serum, Tactician, Emergency Move, and Increasing Strength.