Oda Nobunaga is one of the most influential figures in Japanese history and was truly ahead of his time as a leader and military strategist. He was the first to mobilize a professional army as opposed to commoners and farmers, and rewarded soldiers based on skill rather than family lineage. This helped him assemble the most skilled samurai and retainers in all of Japan. He also made strides to abolish road tariffs on shipped goods which brought much more wealth and prosperity. He overthrew the ruling shogun Ashikaga Yoshiaki, fostered free trade, reformed Japan’s civil government, and was an innovator of military tactics.
Health: 13 / Attack: Melee / Movement: 2
Special Ability: Master Strategist
Other friendly fighters in Oda Nobunaga’s zone add +1 to the value of their played combat cards. (Oda Nobunaga does not benefit from this ability)
Sidekick: Honor Guard
Health: 6 / Attack: Melee / x2
Strategies and Tips
Your entire strategy when playing as Oda should revolve around flanking your opponent while making sure all your sidekicks stay within Oda’s zone. This makes the game a bit more complex than some other heroes, but the payoff is more dynamic and engaging combat than many heroes in the Unmatched roster. Treat Oda like the military strategist he is and keep his minions strategically spaced around the board to create as many opportunities for flanking as you can.
High attack potential
Two 6 health sidekicks
Special Ability buffs his allies
Flanking must be setup
Honor Guard is defeated quickly
Special ability has no effect on himself
The following are 3 tips to controlling the battlefield:
Tip #1: Flanking
Oda makes use of a unique mechanic called flanking, which happens when an opposing fighter is adjacent to two or more fighters under your control, being Oda Nobunaga or his Honor Guard. If you are playing team matches, allied heroes or sidekicks do not count towards this effect. Oda’s entire play style should be based around flanking your opponents as much as possible. Additionally, if all of your sidekicks share a zone with Oda during a flank, they gain an extra +1 to the value of their combat cards. Five of Oda’s eleven cards have effects that rely on having flanked your opponent, so planning ahead is always key. If you’re struggling to set up a flank, consider the following card:
Battle Maneuvers is a versatile card that both Oda and his Honor Guard can use. This allows you to draw 1 card and move each of your fighters up to 2 spaces after combat. It only has a value of 2, but when used defensively you can either flank your opponent or set yourself up to flank at the start of your next turn.
Tip #2: Patience
As when applying strategy with any game, patience is key. If your opponent is making it difficult for you to set up flanks, make sure you do not rush into a situation that is disadvantageous for you. Some ranged fighters can be especially tricky to flank, so use the map’s design to your advantage. Force them to flee towards areas with fewer routes to escape, then boost your maneuver to catch them by surprise.
It is also important not to throw every strong attack you have at your opponent whenever you manage to flank them. Oda has a few cards that are great for baiting out high level defense cards while setting yourself up for future success.
Patience and Strategy is a versatile card that both Oda and his Honor Guard can use. This allows your fighter to recover 2 health if the opponent is flanked. In addition, this only has a value of 1, so if your opponent blocks with a high value defense of your own, you’ve managed to weaken their defenses and heal in one turn.
Spring the Trap is another excellent versatile card that Oda and his Honor Guard can use. This card has a value of 2 and immediately lets your fighter swap spaces with an adjacent friendly fighter. If they do, the other fighter is now the defender. You also get to deal 1 damage to the opposing fighter after combat. If your fighters are placed around the map strategically, this could save you from danger and set you up for the perfect flank at the beginning of your next turn.
Tip #3: Engage the Enemy
Once you have your opponent flanked and are ready to attack, Oda has a few different cards that can deal some heavy damage.
Fire and Flames is an attack with a value of 3 that Oda and his Honor Guard can use that becomes a value of 5 during combat if your opponent is flanked. This is a decently strong card, but if the effects are canceled you do not lose much.
Lighting and Thunder is an Honor Guard attack with a value of 4 that immediately cancels all effects on your opponent’s card. The immediate effect isn’t flawless since any immediate effect your opponent has will activate first, but it can still be a very strong card against defense cards that rely on during combat effects to be valuable.
Student of War is Oda’s best attack card with a value of 5 and an after-combat ability that allows him to draw a number of cards equal to the amount of combat damage dealt. This card is consistently strong since most defenses come with a base power of 2 or 3, and the ability to draw more cards sets you up to defend or attack during your next turn.
Demon of the Sixth Heaven is an Oda scheme that deals 2 damage to each opposing flanked fighter. This card simply allows an easy and reliable 2 damage to your opponents.
Many of the cards that are enhanced by flanking can be used by your Honor Guard but may not seem that powerful at first glance, but this is why Oda’s special ability comes in handy. Each of your attacks performed by the Honor Guard have +1 value so long as they are in Oda’s zone. It may not seem like much, but every point of damage counts. Additionally, it adds a point to their defenses as well, keeping them alive for longer and thus allowing for longer sustained flanks.
Oda Nobunaga’s strategic design is very engaging and satisfying to play. It may seem like a weakness to rely on his sidekicks so much during battle, but if they stay within Oda’s zone then they become very hard to kill. Once defeated though, Oda will have a hard time defeating his opponent if they have too much health left over. Some matchups will be much harder for him to deal with than others, so while new players may find Oda Nobunaga too difficult to play effectively, I believe experienced players will find his strategy focused gameplay a fun and engaging puzzle to solve during every game.