Scenario Breakdown: Quest Love
Updated: Dec 13, 2022
In this series, I’ll share my thoughts on each scenario. We’ll consider the scenario’s effect on Deployment, the BattleLadder, the End Phase, and each champion.
Quest is a fun, but quirky scenario. Quest rewards players who can think ahead a bit and who can select their war bands thoughtfully. This scenario requires champions to move across the board vertically more than any other, but it also requires players to defend their home turf at the same time. There are two clear lanes, so initial setup will be crucial. Ideally, you want a war band which is fast, has control elements, and which can operate at long range.
Some people don’t like Quest, but I think it creates interesting tactical tradeoffs. It’s kind of a strange scenario, but it requires a lot of movement, tough choices, and close calls. The tension between guarding your own turf and invading the opponent’s turf is a timeless one. Like basketball players on defense cheating towards the opponent’s best players, champions in Quest have to find a way to threaten both sides of the board without getting caught in a position to threaten neither.
At the same time that movement across long distances matters in Quest, the actual scoring zones are rather small, so close-in brawling also matters. Once champions arrive, moving one more or one less hex can be round-deciding. This scenario rewards versatile war bands. The scoring zones are also close enough to each other horizontally, that it is not difficult for champions to support each other, so war bands built around mutual boon exchange and combined arms can flourish.
We’ve got two lanes, essentially. Players can deploy up to two hexes inwards on their half of the board, so any champion except Helena can snag a quick step by claiming on their own side. These banners won’t score in the end phase, though. Generally, you’ll want to contest both lanes. Generally, you’ll want to shade your forces towards the center in order to give you the option of switching lanes or reaching out with long-range skills to influence events there. The scoring zones are six hexes apart horizontally and four hexes apart vertically. The big strategic choices in deployment usually revolve around which matchups to create in each lane and whether to double up one of the lanes or to have a champion who floats between them. This depends largely on the personnel involved.
It’s closed up a bit. There are only seven steps on each side. This means that it’s easier to max out early, so Killy war bands will want to consider the timing of their scoring. This also means that protecting a banner has a potentially bigger payoff, although this is arguably a bit harder to do in this scenario given the geometry of the map.
The player who loses the turn gets to place one hex adjacent to an existing hex. I find that it’s less impactful than the end phase adjustment for other scenarios. Generally, players seem to use this to grow the scoring hexes on their opponents side closer to their own side. This helps champions oscillate between banner placement and banner squishing.
As mentioned previously, you want range, movement, support, and general versatility. A lot of champions can flourish here, but there are some exceptions. Let’s have a look at each option.
Finvarr - This might be Finvarr’s best scenario. He’s mobile, agile, and hostile. His ultimate is positively game-breaking in this scenario because it has enough range to relocate a banner from your half of the table to the opponent’s half instantly. Players: it’s quest! Finvarr: Hold. My. Beer.
Halftusk - Not a good scenario for him. His lack of speed will hamper what you’re trying for here. The Froglodytes can just sit on the hexes on your half, freeing up the troll to go across the board without having to play defense, but there are lots of ways to counter this. The simplest is to just kill a frog.
Helena - Don’t take her in this scenario. She has to cross the whole board in order to do anything, and once she gets there, she has to stay, meaning she cannot help anywhere else. Pass.
Mourneblade - This is the ideal Mourneblade situation. Our guy can claim without crossing the board. The Knightshades can keep your opponents bottled up in a scenario where they want to fly around. Mourneblade is an ideal mid-lane floater who can leverage his long ranges to exploit whatever openings the opponent leaves. Just watch out for Maxen.
Rodhri - No. Too slow. Sorry, buddy.
Blackjaw - Sure. He’s fast and can devastate the right targets. Whether he’s an option here depends mostly on what followers your opponent has, but if their defensive stats aren’t too tough, then Blackjaw can be a great choice. The Reavers are fast and scary enough to cause unexpected problems for enemy champions. This scenario helps Blackjaw.
Grimgut - This is a decent spot for him. Retchlings are amazing for blocking off lanes, and this scenario is all about moving through lanes. The speed boons he can pass out are especially welcome here. Ideally, you want to match him up against someone who needs flags to score, otherwise they might just try to beat Grimgut to death.
Jeen - This is an ok spot for her. Drive back can clear out much needed movement lanes. Her ultimate can really swing things by helping your war band to pivot from planting flags to crushing them. As with Blackjaw, target selection will determine whether she can contribute much besides movement support, but sometimes movement support will be enough.
Luella - This scenario probably helps her. Luella loves traveling long distances, and that’s what’s called for here. The Shield Maidens will probably get dizzy from trying to keep up with the zig zags, but what else is new.
Titus - Probably not his best look, but he’s fine here. Followers tend to clump up in the lanes, so he can feast. Roar of Battle is very good here. The Glory Seekers can form a somewhat durable wall to block enemy movement. Solid as usual.
Nia - This scenario helps Nia. Yes, she has slow dwarf issues, but she makes up with it in a couple of ways. First, the tendency to shade to the inside positions allows her mirror abilities to do extra work. Second, her ability to make hexes can shrink the gap between your scoring zone and your opponent’s scoring zone, which makes it easier to pivot. This combos nicely with the end phase rubber band mechanic. She’s good here.
Raith’Marid - Versatility? Yes. Movement.? Uh huh. Yeah. He's still great.
Rattlebone - This is a good scenario for her. She is fast and can quickly deploy hexlings to block lanes. She’s great at boon distribution, which is easier here. Her ultimate will likely catch a lot of targets. Nice.
Shayle - Oh hell yes. Avalanche pulls the scoring hexes closer. Nice for you. Earthquake is absolutely huge both for denying and opening access to scoring zones. Landslide can start a turn adjacent to a hex on your side and end it on a hex adjacent to your opponent’s side. Shayle is always great. He’s great here.
Keera - This scenario is… fine for Keera. The dragons have room to roam, so she’ll be able to get her attacks off with little difficulty. She will probably want to cross the board, though, and she’s slow. And vulnerable. It’s not a huge issue, but the scenario is probably neutral for her.
Lorsann - This scenario helps her. She can pinball back and forth between zones without sacrificing any attack potential. She can switch lanes easily or attack the other lane without really committing to a switch. Her followers do nicely in the mid-field, sniping at whoever comes by. Yep.
Maxen - Not a great scenario for him at first glance because of his speed limit, but there are some subtleties that make this work for him. He can contribute to a mutually-buffing warband concept very well. He also really helps you deal with Mourneblade who can otherwise dominate this scenario. Finally, if you can get scavenger to trigger, this scenario is the one where it is perhaps the most valuable.
Morrigan - Yeah! If you build a war band around mutual buffing, Morrigan can make the most of it. Her access to speed boons means that she can get from zone to zone pretty well. This is a good spot for her if you like her.
Rangosh - Yep yep! He’s fast and deadly. Unlike Keera, Rangosh does not mind personally getting in people’s faces. He lives for it. This scenario gives him room to run while at the same time giving opponents few places to hide.
Sneaky Peet - This scenario hurts him a bit because it often asks you to react to opponents during the clash phase. His movement is an asset, for sure, but it’s sometimes hard to get the most out of him if you’re going first.
A lot of champions work in Quest. This means that you have a lot of options for your warband. Make sure that you have a play style in mind when you compose your team. Are we going to put Nia between two boon-hungry slayers? How about we exploit the opponent's lack of a Maelstrom by clogging up the lanes with followers? Whatever you do, make sure that there is some overall concept that links the parts together because Quest is less about one on one matchups than some other lane scenarios. In a scenario that's about flexibility, there's a place for any kind of champion, but you don't want a warband that's neither fish nor fowl.