Dave M's Guide to Styx
By Dave M
In this series, we are going to give you a quick breakdown of each champion. This is geared mostly towards people who have not played with this champion much, so it’s not an in depth tactical treatise. This is more of a quick breakdown and assessment of the champion.
We will grade each champion’s offense, defense, support, mobility, and control. We’ll explain each grade and then give you a quick vision of a dream activation for that champion.
In a separate series, Grumpysarn has written about how champions match up with each other. Here are the matchup evaluations for Guardians, Maelstroms, Slayers, and Shapers.
Here is the grading scale for each category:
Here are Styx's cards:
Styx is a unique champion who can take a few games to really come round to or notice his impact in a game, but once you do he provides a lot of reliability and area control without relying on dice rolls.
Offense - Bad This could arguably be average, but with a range 1 5 accuracy 5 damage Scythe Slash, he's not really scaring anyone, even if his free armour blight from Dead Beckoning pushes this to be more like 6-and-a-bit damage dice. Meanwhile, the Hound's Triple Bite is interesting and potentially versatile, but unreliable. It is most effective against dwarves, dragons and other dodge 2's. Occasionally it might get you the damage you need against a dodge 4, but you cannot rely on it. I often don't attack with Styx or his dogs and engage in banner or movement shenanigans instead.
Defense - Average At a 4/2 profile with 6 wounds, Styx is Nia levels of tough but without her range. It's pretty average: unlikely to be one-shot, but not tough enough to reliably stick in a fight. However, the damage blight on Scythe Slash and the ability to ultimate someone away does give him some more survivability. Likewise, the Hounds are just tough enough to be a pain, but not enough to take a real beating. Most high accuracy attacks are low damage so may only chip away at them, but they'll suffer against big attacks like a Blackjaw Kick or Kailinn Flashing Blade. Support - Good Okay, so now it's getting more into Styx's strengths. A free, dice-less shield blight from Dead Beckoning is amazing: even better than having another damage dice. Likewise, after the initial turns the Hounds typically don't need to use Pack Hunters and so are free to Howl enemies, which combines nicely with the high dodge of this warband. The Hounds' Drag is amongst their biggest strength: it can remove followers from blocking your path in both phases in a way only Maelstroms or Landslide can usually compare to. Again, without dice. Note: you can only drag towards one hound, not both. Mobility - Average With a 2 hex movement in each phase, Styx is arguably quite slow. However, his passive and Apparition (essentially giving him another hex of movement if you Apparition a banner closer) means he has less need for more movespeed so long as you find him a cluster of hexes to sit on. The Hounds on the other hand are fast pups. Pack Hunters gives them a lot of threat range onto banners or to get into position to Drag, with Drag once more removing obstacles from Styx's path and mitigating his slow move speed.
Control - Outstanding Styx's greatest strength is dice-less, reliable control and banner denial of an area. His passive and ultimate are both amongst the best in the game. Unless enemies have a high-accuracy push - as Haunted means he can't be moved when KO'd - Styx can just set up in a hex cluster and freely deny banners in that area: let alone with his dogs to threaten them too. The dogs may rarely get off Torn to Shreds, but they provide another angle of threat and can deter a banner from even being planted near them in the first place (e.g., if they're by your home hexes on Quest). Apparition gives Styx even more options: create a new hex cluster on Life, bring an enemy banner closer for Styx to crush, or move a friendly banner closer to Styx and further out of reach of the enemy. Styx's ultimate cements the area denial theme from his passive further. So long as you can predict what your enemy wants to do, you can stop it, again without rolling dice: usually this saves your banner and gives Styx the initiative. You just use this skill and ruin that champion's activation: potentially shutting down the likes of Skullbreaker or Titus for that phase. Use this at key points, such as turn 3, to knock out a champ and guarantee you a banner advantage or shut down a big activation.
Here we see Styx dispatching Rhodri with the Reaping. This both saves Styx's banner and takes out Rhodri's. Though Styx does not score steps from the KO, this activation swings nine end phase steps on the Battle Ladder.
Styx does well into particularly tough champions, like Halftusk and Rhodri, as his ult negates their survivability and he can deny them the banner advantage. He can struggle against champions that can get through the high dodge of him and the hounds, such as Lorsann and Luella. He goes well with most allies as he is versatile, but can support Guardians in protecting their banners or provide control to complement a Slayer's damage.