Streams of Blood (Ranked)

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Streams of Blood Map Analysis

Streams of Blood PvP map
Map analysis
Terrain type Blocked Impassable Difficult Open Victory Total
Quantity 14 32 0 96 1 143
Open terrain analysis
No. of adjacent open terrain 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 Total
Quantity 2 12 10 18 26 13 13 0 97
Open terrain analysis: For each open terrain, count the number of adjacent open terrains. An open terrain has a minimum of 1 adjacent open terrain and a maximum of 8 open terrains.
The quantity signifies the number of open terrains with X adjacent open terrains. The distribution indicates the map difficulty in relation to movement.

Offensive Map Control

Choke Points and Pincers

Streams of Blood (SoB) is a PVP map containing 143 terrains with 1 victory terrain. There are no difficult terrains but a variety of narrow restrictive paths and four dead ends make SoB perilous to the unwary. All figures adopt the 'offensive force attacking downwards and opponent defending upwards' orientation.

Narrow paths give rise to choke points and kill zones, forcing your opponent to seek meager cover provided by blocked terrains. Figs. 1 and 2 show the positions of various choke points in the map labelled as A and B. By occupying the various strategic points, opposing units are forced to fight on multiple fronts. Gradual pincer movements (as illustrated by the red arrows) squeeze the available pockets and entrap opposing units, making for quick easy kills.

The primary difference between Figs. 1 and 2 lie in the victory terrain at B. When the map is split vertically, occupying B reduces the effectiveness of the choke point and pincer movement due to restricted line of sight. It can however be utilized as an ambush point for burst units equipped with Charge and step based attacks. Against the AI, SoB favors Amy's party of elves due to their natural Dash moves. An early Rockfall/Cave In combined with critical positioning and offensive attacks make short work of any party.
Fig. 1: Choke points splits map horizontally
Fig. 2: Choke points splits map vertically

Line of Sight

Due to the lack of open terrains, line of sight is a precious commodity crucial for ranged units in SoB. As Fig. 3 shows, a unit represented by X occupying the victory terrain can see 58 open terrains fore and aft providing much needed firepower and support for melee units. For a map containing 97 open terrains, this represents more than half the map. In addition, the unit occupying X can take a step forward and increase its forward line of sight coverage while leaving the victory terrain in close proximity for easy recapture, an advantage easily exploitable via Dimensional Traveller. This makes the victory terrain a great spot to hold, defend, attack and support from.

In the event that the victory terrain is already occupied, an alternative position that provides excellent line of sight is represented by X as shown in Fig. 4. This position provides a line of sight of 40 open terrains for the offensive force attacking downwards. Utilizing map symmetry, it is possible to install another ranged unit on the opposite side of the map, giving complete map coverage using only ranged units. Note that the effectiveness of these positions are highly dependent on possession of the victory terrain. If the victory terrain is in enemy hands, the opponent could simply use pincers (as shown in Fig. 2) to eliminate X. Be especially prudent and wary in capturing critical spots.
Fig. 3: Line of sight at the victory terrain
Fig. 4: Line of sight at choke point

Rush Tactics

While a blitz is designed to break a holding formation or a defensive line, a rush uses speed and surprise to overwhelm and/or cripple an enemy before they achieve effective buildup. The primary objective is to reduce the opponent's effectiveness as early as possible. A rush is nowhere as effective mid/late game, hence, the emphasis on speed and surprise. In SoB, there are two viable rush tactics: rushing the spawn point and rushing the victory terrain.

A7 & K7: Fig. 5 show the spawn positions in the SoB map. A7 and K7 represent two spawn positions in the enemy's half. With the right starting hand (eg: Sprints, Dashes) and turn advantage, one can easily isolate A7/K7 in the early turns (see Fig. 6) leading to a kill and/or exert early lane pressure. The benefits of rushing the spawn points are two-fold. Firstly, the opponent's party effectiveness is drastically reduced by a third. Secondly, it puts pressure on the opponent forcing him to play defensively and/or make mistakes. However, rushing is not without risks. Once a rush is committed, your units are exposed and a veteran opponent is able to freely target your rushing units or develop a counter-rush strategy.

F7: As of right now, SoB is the only map with 1 victory terrain. This means that it is possible to rush for victory stars. Such positional rushing aim to keep your opponent under early pressure through denial, dictating the arena of combat. If he ignores the unit camping the victory spot, he risks winning the battles and losing the war. If he engages the victory spot, he exposes his flanks to pincers and/or ambushes.

Fig. 5: Spawn points
Fig. 6: Rushing A7 spawn point

Defensive Map Control

Defensive Positioning

Defensive map control is a risk averse approach to the game. It maximizes a party's effectiveness in combat through synergy and unit positioning, preventing flanking maneuvers and countering offensives. A basic tactic of defensive map control is defensive positioning utilizing available terrains, blind spots and ambush points to shut down the enemy. In SoB, the number of blocking terrains allow for easy defensive positioning both for melee and ranged units.

1a & 1c: Camping points for side lanes. Units attempting to flank or pincer (from the top) are slowed and vulnerable. Anvil Strikes become extremely deadly. Limited line of sight for ranged enemies. Combined with ranged support from 1b, these defensive positions form vertical pincers.

1b: Camping point for mid lane and victory square. Excellent spot behind cover that allows for multi-directional offensives, support and counters. Also useful for sniping victory square. Useful cards in hand to exert area of influence: Bashes, Force Bolts etc.

2a & 2b: Useful spots for ranged units to cover and attack enemy units attempting to infiltrate from the tri-lanes. Large field of view with overlaps, creating kill zones. Long range attacks combined with AOEs shut down enemy maneuvers.

2c: Sniper's spot, considered inferior to 2a & 2b as the range requirement is longer and does not provide alternative for advance. Combines well with Surging Bolts and Surging Blasts.
Fig. 7: Defensive positions for melee units
Fig. 8: Defensive positions for ranged units


Blitzkrieg refers to a strategy that employs concentrating overwhelming force at high speed to break through enemy lines. In SoB, while offensive map control shuts down a party effectiveness quickly, it tends to spread units out due to multiple lane pockets. The defending party can choose to focus all attacks and blitz a single lane, thereby throwing the opponent into disarray. The blitz is also useful in creating lane pressure, forcing enemy units into giving up precious positions.

Blitzes are highly draw dependent, require calculations and foresight. Well executed blitzes can turn an attempted offensive into a simple rout in a single turn.

Figs. 9 and 10 show an example of a blitz taking out an enemy camping the left lane (purple circle in Fig. 9). Fig. 9 show units in defensive positions (3a, 3b & 3c) prior to the blitz. When the left lane is overrun, 3a moves into range of the victory terrain and combines with 3c to form a horizontal pincer. 3b then patrols the left lane providing support from the left flank. Any enemy unit camping the victory square has to decide whether to flee or fight. Alternatively, 3a and 3c can also combine to pincer the right lane while 3b moves to secure the victory terrain. In the event of enemy retreats, units can move to secure offensive map control terrains and turn the tide of the game.

Fig. 9: Blitzing the left lane (before)
Fig. 10: Blitzing the left lane (after)

Crowd Control

Crowd control (CC) is a term used in MMORPGs (Massive Multiplayer Online Role-Playing Games) and MOBA (Multiplayer Online Battle Arena) games to refer to the ability to limit the number of mobs actively fighting during an encounter. It also refers to abilities that influence or prevent the abilities or actions of other character(s). Crowd control is extremely powerful as it forces opponents to use a smaller set of abilities/actions, rendering an opponent nearly useless. In Card Hunter, CC is neither an offensive or defensive strategy. Instead it belongs in its own category and merits a separate discussion. In the context of a pvp map guide, we focus on terrain based forms of CC and present two useful examples centered around Wall of Stone and Wall of Illusion.

Wall of Stone (WoS)

Wall of Stone introduces up to three blocking terrains for a duration of two turns. SoB is a great map for WoS. The narrow restrictive paths and dead ends make it easy to shut down lanes, areas and cut off retreat routes. The most obvious being the area around the victory terrain. Figs. 11, 12 and 13 show zoomed-in illustrations of the various uses.

Fig. 11: Offensive use of WoS
Fig. 12: Defensive use of WoS
Fig. 13: Denial use of WoS

W1 & X: W1 represents a WoS casted to deny units entering/leaving the victory terrain. The unit at X can either engage an enemy in the side lanes or choose to snipe the victory terrain for points. This is an offensive CC use of Wall of Stone.

W2 & X: If the enemy mounts an offensive push in the mid-lane, casting W2 shuts down enemy units from engaging against X. This allows pincer movement from the side lanes. If X is low on health, W2 has effectively stalled the opponent and bought a precious turn or two for possible regeneration. This is an defensive CC use of Wall of Stone.

W3 & X: WoS is great for denying victory terrain in SoB. Such use may arise in situations where the opponent has points advantage or when a clear mid-lane buildup and offensive is about to begin. This is a denial CC use of Wall of Stone.

Fig. 14: Movement flow of SoB
Fig. 15: General CC use of WoS

Aside from using WoS in the area around the victory terrain, SoB allows for many other places where WoS can be applied creatively. If we study the flow of movement as shown in Fig. 14, units (without Teleport) must traverse certain key areas in order to engage the enemy. Due to map symmetry, due diligence in applying WoS can effectively isolate pockets of terrain that prevent enemies from fleeing/retreating and/or allow for defensive stalls and unit protection.

W4: Units attempting to retreat from the bottom of the map are effectively cut off and caught in a dead-end. Units attempting to move into the leftmost lane from the top are blocked from progressing any further, thereby wasting moves.

W5: Units attempting to contest the mid-lane/victory terrain from the top are effectively cut off and have to either (a) take the long way round to the left side of the map or (b) engage in ranged combat. This is particularly effective as an early offensive rush tactic (offensive map control).

Note to the reader: The 'T' shaped W4 and W5 represent the many ways in which WoS can be applied. It is up to the player to determine whether an 'L' shaped wall or an 'I' shaped wall is best used given the circumstances.

Wall of Illusion (WoI)

Wall of Illusion introduces up to three terrains designed to block enemy's line of sight for a duration of one turn. While not as useful or as easy to use as WoS, WoI is a great way to create a zone of protection by blocking line of sight. In a similar regard, the most useful area for WoI is the area around the victory terrain. Figs. 16, 17 and 18 show zoomed-in illustrations.

Fig. 16: Line of Sight between X and Y before Wall of Illusion
Fig. 17: Line of Sight between X and Y after Wall of Illusion
Fig. 18: Offensive use of Wall of Illusion

Figure 16 show a unit at X and an enemy at Y with bi-directional line of sight (denoted by the black arrows). When WoI is casted at the area denoted by W6 (Fig. 17), X now has line of sight to Y but Y does not have line of sight to X. X is therefore protected from attacks by Y while having the ability to attack Y without retaliation. In fact, due to W6, X is entirely protected from targeted attacks anywhere in the top half of the map. With the exception of Whirlwind and Whirlwind Enemies, X has effectively scored a victory point while ensuring maximum line of sight upon the enemy. This is a defensive CC use of WoI.

To use WoI offensively, cast the spell closer to Y (Fig. 18). Not only is Y's field of vision severely impaired, it is now susceptible to melee attacks. Ensure that the enemy has run out of moves or is move restricted before applying such a strategy.

Fig. 19: Shutting down the tri-lanes with Wall of Illusion

Where WoS impedes movement flow, WoI impedes field of view. As Figs. 3 and 4 above shows, maximum line of sight is obtained when units are localized at the center of the map near the tri-lane pockets. However, these positions are restrictive and narrow. Well-timed use of WoI (W8, W9) effectively shuts down the opponent's party effectiveness, making the tri-lanes a dangerous place for the unwary.

Card synergies:

(a) Wall of Illusion is a single turn spell. To maximize its effectiveness, it is best used near the start of every turn. However, it is highly likely that enemy units are capable of moving and adjusting to obtain new line of sight. To prevent this, it is imperative to combine WoI with other CC cards. Card effects with Halt or Encumber synergize well with WoI. Examples include Entangling Roots, frost based attacks (Frost Jolt, Cone of Cold, Cold Snap etc), Icy Block, Reactive Trip, Tripping Sweep and Pinning Spear Toss. In the off-chance that the opponent has Trip, Hit the Deck or encumbering armors in hand, WoI renders the enemy a sitting duck.

(b) Aside from synergy with Halt and Encumber, movement and position manipulation cards also work well to render an enemy unit useless. Telekinesis, Gusts of War, Winds of War, Barge, Force Bolts and Bashes can be used to move the opponent onto illusion terrains. Note that it is far better to bash an enemy onto one's own illusion terrain than to bash an enemy out of one.


Phaselock: Author of this guide.

Lance: Proofread this guide. I really appreciated it. :)

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