December 4, 2021 March 30, 2023
Wizard101 Rhoshambo PvP
Last Summer, I posted an article regarding changes to PvP and how close we were to 5th age. I had stated that many changes were still needed before we were truly ready. Little did I know just how many changes were coming! This update is packed full of new content for everyone. Lemuria is definitely on everyone’s mind, but beyond that we also have one of the biggest PvP updates the game has ever seen: The Rhoshambo Update! If you haven’t seen the new spells yet, be sure to check out our Rhoshambo spell list!
So what is Rhoshambo? The Dev notes went over this in more detail, but it’s basically a fancy name for Rock, Paper, Scissors. Calling it “Death, Storm, Life, Fire, Myth, Ice” didn’t exactly have a nice ring to it.
Each school has both a hard counter and a soft counter school. Death hard counters Life and soft counters Storm. Meanwhile in the other direction, Death is hard countered by Myth and soft countered by Ice. Balance is just the weird kid in the corner of the classroom avoiding everyone. Based on this wheel, a player using only Death spells (a Mono Death) should theoretically lose to a player using only Myth spells (a Mono Myth). While it will still be possible to outplay your opponent, it will be very difficult. As a Death looking to gain momentum against a Myth, this means dipping your training points into another schools spells. In this case, Life would be the best bet. However, even with life spells to counter myth, you’re at a pip disadvantage. The only true way to fully keep up with your counter matchup is with a Mastery!
Right now, PvP is centered around 7 different schools, meaning about 7 different matchups are possible each time you decide to queue up. Eventually, everything becomes predictable and very stale. The meta is often solved rapidly. With these new mastery amulets being introduced to the game, an entirely new meta of Rhoshambo PvP is upon us! We go from 7 different possible matchups to a whopping 49 different combinations! Yes, 49 and not 21. A Death with a Life mastery will play differently than a Life with a Death mastery. This doesn’t even include that each combination could have a variety of strategies and deck builds. The possibilities are endless. Medusa on a Death? Easy. Efreet on a Storm? Sure. Abominable Weaver with a Life? Consider yourself shielded!
The 4th Age Talismans
The mastery amulets we’ve had available to us just weren’t good enough for competitive play at max level. They stopped being viable once amulets with better universal stats were added to the game. These new mastery amulets are much better with stats comparable to that of dragoon and even uber for some schools!
All of the 4th age Talismans have the same stats. Before, the closest we’ve gotten to usable mastery amulets were the Balance masteries with 3% universal resist. Even then, they weren’t worth it. You gave up health, critical block, and the 4 pip item cards from the Dragoon amulets. These are a massive upgrade with good resist, health, and even pip conserve, topping Dragoon amulets in almost everyway!
The only downside is losing the 4 pip AOE’s. While these are great ways to deal with minions in addition to just being a solid hit, I think it’s well worth it to make the switch. If you build your deck with minions in mind, then losing the dragoon hits won’t be as much of a set back.
Dual School Strategy
Using a Mastery doesn’t just mean splashing their utilities for synergy or for countering your worst matchup. The potential to attack with two schools at once is there. Consider the following deck setup:
Keep in mind, this is only a rough draft of a dual school deck setup. The general idea is to setup for two different schools at the same time with Spirit Blade and Dark Pact. Your opponent won’t even realize you’re using myth hits until it’s too late. Not to mention you get access to the Deadly Minotaur transmutes in your sidedeck!
This full mastery strategy is possible with current in game gear such as the Forgemaster Boots, The Darkmoor athame, or in this exact case, the Celestia Neon Axe. Notably most of the usable gear for strategies like this are from a bundle or within a pack in the crowns shop. Don’t be discouraged, however, as new gear is on its way and will be droppable!
Already, I’ve seen a common misconception regarding what school identity really means. Many players see certain spells as something only wizards of that school should have access to. Only Ice wizards should be able to use Steal Ward or only Fires should be able to use Link. While the thinking behind this makes sense, it’s not accurate. School identity belongs to the spells, not the wizards. If a Storm wizard is using Steal Ward, school identity isn’t fractured as a result. The player still used an Ice spell. Steal Ward is and always will be an Ice spell.
(Within School Identity)
(NOT within School Identity)
Now if a school like Death or Fire got a new spell that stole shields for one pip, then we would have a problem. If players were only restricted to their own school’s spells, then certain matchups would be nearly impossible. A Death wizard would be nearly hopeless in countering a myth without proper trap removal.
There is one more important detail in this new meta. Deck building will be much more important. You can’t just jam your deck full of Rhoshambo spells and call it a day. Knowing how many to pack and which ones will be the key to success. Pack too many and you’ll deck fail. Pack too few, and you’ll deck fail. If you pack the wrong ones… and you guessed it.. you’ll deck fail! While it doesn’t feel good, it will be a learning experience. The deck building process just became a much more important aspect of PvP and it will require a lot of trial and error to get it just right!
Packing the right amount of counters in your deck to align with your own strategy is very important. As a Storm with Fire mastery, maxing out on both Reap the whirlwind and Oni’s Forge will not help you. Both of these spells work well with different gambits from a Storm’s spellbook. Instead, maybe center your deck around one of these gambits. If you want to go for the Thundering Jinn, packing more copies of Oni’s Forge will make more sense and further the Thundering Jinn gameplan.
What are you looking forward to the most with this update?
What new strategies or setups are you going to try?
Please comment below!