Here’s your Marvel Contest of Champions news brief for Wednesday, August 5, 2020.
Schedule Notes: Week 2 of the Summoner Smackdown Boss Rushes kicks-off at 1pm EST, along with the August Event Quest. Canadian Potions (Maple Syrup and Poutine) also convert to regular health potions and revives at 1pm EST. The Alliance Quest series begins at 3pm EST, ending 100% Roster Availability. The Alpha Arena begins at 6pm EST.
Here’s all the info you need to maximize your resource gain from the August Side Quest, Heralds of Galactus, in Marvel Contest of Champions. This Side Quest has a couple of very important features that you need to keep in mind before you get started.
You will only get 28 Entry Tickets (Galactus’s Favor) over the course of the month from a special login calendar. Entry Tickets can be used to enter 1 difficulty level of the Side Quest. If you back out of a quest, or select the wrong difficulty level, you will lose your ticket and you will not get it back. Be very careful with how you use your tickets!
Heralds of Galactus has 5 difficulty levels: Normal, Heroic, Master, Epic, and Herald Difficulty. Herald Difficulty is this month’s Canadian Difficulty and is tuned to Cavalier Players. You must be Level 55 to access Herald Difficulty.
As your tickets are limited to just 28, you can’t play all the difficulty levels of the Side Quest. Instead, you should focus on the highest level of difficulty you can reasonably complete.
There will be a rotating set of challenges that will reset daily at 6am EST.
The Wednesday/Friday/Sunday challenges will reward Hero Crystal Shards, while the Thursday/Saturday/Monday quests will reward rank-up materials. The Tuesday quest rewards a combination of shards and catalysts.
What’s exciting is Heralds of Galactus has a “Choose Your Own Adventure” aspect to the rewards. If you wish, you can spend your tickets just on the shard days, or just on the catalyst days, it’s totally up to you. You can save up your tickets and run the same quest multiple times in a single day. Just remember to spend all your tickets before Heralds of Galactus ends on Wednesday, September 2 at 1pm EST.
If you need help deciding how to spend your tickets, DOWNLOAD THE REWARDS SPREADSHEET. It has the rewards matrix for all 5 difficulties, and you can customize your ticket spend to see how your rewards will stack up over the course of the month.
Here’s your Marvel Contest of Champions news brief for Monday, August 3, 2020.
Schedule Notes: Round 2 of the 4-Star Basic Domino and X-23 Featured Arenas at 1pm EST. Summoner Sigil Owners, your Solo Event, Gold Quest, and items on a 7-day timer and the 5-Star Featured Crystal in the Black-ISO Market reset at 1pm EST. 100% Roster Availability until Alliance War attack resumes at 2pm EST. UMCOC Podcast, Live on Discord at 8pm EST.
Next week in Marvel Contest of Champions features Longshot as the Basic Arena Champion, and the second Boss Rush of the summer goes live!
I hope you and your family are staying safe during these difficult times.
Alliance Wars Seasons We are currently in Alliance Season 19, which ends on Tuesday, August 4. Per the latest forum post on Alliance War, you must complete 2 wars with the alliance you end the season with to be eligible for Season Rewards.
Full Roster Availability (No AW/AQ): 100% champion availability starting at 3pm EST on Sunday, August 2 through Monday, August 3 at 2pm EST. There will be a second window beginning on Tuesday, August 4 at 2pm EST through Wednesday, August 5 at 3pm EST.
Sunday, August 2: Sunday Arenas begin at 1pm EST. 100% Roster Availability beginning at 3pm EST following the conclusion of the Alliance Quest Series.
Monday, August 3: Round 2 of the 4-Star Basic Domino and X-23 Featured Arenas at 1pm EST. Summoner Sigil Owners, your Solo Event, Gold Quest, and items on a 7-day timer and the 5-Star Featured Crystal in the Black-ISO Market reset at 1pm EST. 100% Roster Availability until Alliance War attack resumes at 2pm EST. UMCOC Podcast, Live on Discord at 8pm EST.
Tuesday, August 4: 100% Roster Availability beginning at 2pm EST, following the conclusion of the final war of Season 19.
Wednesday, August 5: Week 2 of the Summoner Smackdown Boss Rushes kicks-off at 1pm EST, along with the August Event Quest and Side Quest. Canadian Potions (Maple Syrup and Poutine) also convert to regular health potions and revives at 1pm EST. The Alliance Quest series begins at 3pm EST, ending 100% Roster Availability. The Alpha Arena begins at 6pm EST.
Thursday, August 6: Round 1 of the 4 Star Basic Longshot and To Be Announced Featured Arenas begin at 1pm EST. Incursions Milestones and Top Zone Bonus rewards reset at 2pm EST. The Tier 4 Basic Arena begins at 6pm EST.
Friday, August 7: No schedule notes.
Saturday, August 8: The Tier 4 Basic Arena begins at 6pm EST.
Here’s some info to get you prepped for what’s happening in Marvel Contest of Champions next month. Expect to see the v28.0 update available for download around August 3. Read the Full Release Notes.
A former member of the Nova Corps, Gabriel Lan is now infused with the Power Cosmic (thus making him a Cosmic Champ) as Air Walker, Herald of Galactus. As with many Cosmic Champions, Air Walker becomes more powerful by gaining Buffs, in his case Power Cosmic Buffs, which actually act as Persistent Charges. He starts the quest with 1 Power Cosmic Buff, and gains one for each fight he wins, up to a max of 3. What is unique about Air Walker is that he doesn’t have access to his SP3 until he has 3 Power Cosmic Buffs. He also has a Dark Tide Debuff which will cause damage to the opponent when they are also suffering from Armor Break. Additionally, if the opponent has 10 Dark Tide Debuffs, they are combined into a passive effect that lasts for the remainder of the fight, and the next two fights that champion participates in (making it a cross-fight ability). Air Walker has a number of synergy partners, including Silver Surfer, Terrax, Nova, Green Goblin, Phoenix, Ebony Maw, Mr. Fantastic, Thing, Human Torch, Invisible Woman, and a “coming soon” Herald of Galactus.
Dragon Man is an android brought to life by Diablo, and has often been a pawn of both Heroes and Villains of the Marvel Universe. He is a Mystic Champion that relies on Power Gain and Unblockable to spam specials and deal big damage, making him sound a bit like a mystic Hyperion. He also has a new feature called Ineptitude, which inverts the potency of Fury, Armor Up, Cruelty, and Precision Buffs. He is a robot so he is immune to Bleed and Poison, but he is also immune to Armor Shattered. If he suffers from Armor Break, he can Degen the opponent, with an extra bonus against Cosmics so be careful bringing Medusa against him. Dragon Man has synergies with Diablo, Mr. Fantastic, Invisible Woman, Tigra, Punisher, Punisher 2099, and Elsa Bloodstone.
EVENT QUEST In August’s Event Quest, the ever helpful H.E.R.B.I.E. needs your assistance to track down Dragon Man before the ISO-8 of the Battlerealm corrupts him and returns him to a monstrous state. H.E.R.B.I.E. is also investigating who or what has been mentally controlling so many in the Battlerealm over the past few months.
SIDE QUEST This month there will be a special login calendar that will grant you “Galactus’ Favor” which will allow you to enter the Side Quest. Rewards change from shards to catalysts on alternating days. If you wish to acquire just one of these resources, you can save your entries and run the same quest multiple times on a single day.
For the most powerful Summoners, Canadian Difficulty makes way for Herald Difficulty. You must be Level 55 or higher to enter, and Cavalier players will have the chance to unlock special Solo Objectives that contain T5CC fragments.
BACK ISSUES #5 – BLOOD AND VENOM We’ve waited a long time, but it’s finally here. Take on the classic version of Blood and Venom, or try the new Variant difficulty. As always, Variants have a theme. Blood and Venom requires you to bring Mystic, Spider-Verse, and Symbiote Champions, and each chapter will have a difficult Global Buff enhancing one of these three groups.
NEW FEATURES& UPDATES Daily Quest Auto-Complete is here! Once you have explored a given difficulty of a Daily Quest, you can auto-complete the quest going forward in exchange for energy.
The changes for the Act 6.2.6 Champion fight are set to go live. As previously announced, No Retreat is being removed, The Champion’s Block Penetration is being reduced from 25% to 2%, Nullify Damage is being reduced from 10% to 2% of Modified attack, and the number of Dexterity charges in the final phase is being reduced from 5 to 3. Further changes to Act 6 are still to come.
The fix for split-map Alliance Quest ticket cost will go live, allowing Alliances to share the entry cost of Maps 6 & 7.
The Inequity Mastery will now use the defender’s modified attack instead of base attack.
FINAL THOUGHTS Air Walker and Dragon Man are two champions I have barely any knowledge of from the comics, so I can’t say I’m excited for them, but I’m looking forward to testing them out all the same. While there is a lot of content coming in August, for me it’s all about Variant 5. I’ve been waiting for Blood and Venom for a long time, and hearing about buffs that may make Symbiotes, Spider-Verse champs, and Mystics potentially OP for this piece of content has certainly raised my level of excitement. It will also give me a reason to make more guides, so I’m looking forward to that as well.
It’s Episode 27 of the Contest Realm Podcast! This week Rich and I discuss all the troubles The Contest has been experiencing, Kabam’s response, our thoughts on compensation, Canadian Difficulty, and potential sponsors for Rich’s next featured arena grind.
If you plan on clearing some difficult content in Marvel Contest of Champions this August, perhaps Variant 5, The Boss Rushes, or Herald Difficulty, you’ll need to know when all your champs will be available. Here is the full schedule of 100% Roster Availability (no AQ/AW) for the month. All times are EST, 2pm is based off of the approximate end of AW attack.
Sunday, August 2 at 3pm EST – Monday, August 3 at 2pm EST
Tuesday, August 4 at 2pm EST – Wednesday, August 5 at 3pm EST
Tuesday, August 11 at 2pm EST – Thursday, August 13 at 2pm EST
Tuesday, August 18 at 3pm EST – Thursday, August 20 at 2pm EST
Wednesday, August 26 at 3pm EST – Thursday, August 27 at 2pm EST
Friday, August 28 at 2pm EST – Saturday, August 29 at 2pm EST
Thanks to the new Content Creator Beta, I’m able to give you an early look at the power of a 5-Star 5/65 Signature Level 200 Sasquatch. Note that this champion was on my test account, not my main account, and that access to the CCP Beta was temporary and for testing purposes only.
To test out Sasquatch’s usefulness, I took him into Variant 2 with his squad of XL buddies to see how he stacks up. Check out the video and read my full review below.
I really like how Sasquatch is designed. I have a soft spot XL/Tank champions, so he fits my play-style. Sasquatch moves very smoothly for a big guy, and his kit is pretty intuitive.
What’s nice about Sasquatch is you’re rewarded for basic 5-hit combos and SP1/SP2 game-play. Sasquatch’s big damage comes from his SP2, but you have to do a little work before you get there. Light attacks build Rage charges on Sasquatch. Once you get over 5 you have a chance to enter his “Wrath of Tanaraq” bonus phase. Medium attacks build rupture Debuffs on the opponent, which can be refreshed via the SP1 and removed via the SP2. Each Rupture Debuff increases Sasquatch’s SP2 damage, and if he’s in Wrath of Tanaraq he gains an additional 50% damage on top of that.
So to review, with Sasquatch you want to 5-hit combo to build up Rage and Ruptures. Refresh the Ruptures with the SP1, and once you hit Wrath of Tanaraq with multiple Ruptures stacked up, launch the SP2 for big damage.
Doesn’t need to be awakened to access his big damage. His signature ability has two parts. The first is a scaling regeneration that has a percent chance to activate once per fight when hit by a contact attack when below 40% health. The second part allows him to become Passively Unstoppable during Wrath of Tanaraq when using Special and Heavy Attacks, and the opponent’s defensive power rate is decreased during these attacks.
His heavy attack places a Stagger Debuff (Max 2) that prevents the opponent from activating their next buff. He is better in match-ups where you need to prevent buffs, versus fights that require you to nullify already active buffs.
If the opponent is Staggered or has a buff, Sasquatch’s rate of power gain from attacking is increased.
Immune to Armor Break and Frostbite, and his 90% Coldsnap resistance should allow for healing via Willpower in most circumstances.
Ranks in the 91st percentile for Prestige as a 5/65 Sig 200 5-Star Champion, putting him at #2 in the Mystic class.
His health pool is massive. At 44K HP for a 5-Star 5/65, he has the largest health pool in the game.
If his healing is reversed, he removes his healing effects.
Rage stacks reduce all incoming damage by 5% per stack (except for SP3). Rage can stack up to 15 times.
His synergies are helpful but not absolutely required. His synergy partners are other quality champions such as Hulkbuster, Squirrel Girl, Hulk, Thing, Sentinel, Man-Thing, Sabretooth, and Guardian, and come from a variety of classes, so you can actually build a solid team around him.
As his damage is tied to his Rupture Debuffs. Sasquatch will be at a severe disadvantage versus champions than can shrug debuffs, in Debuff-Immune matchups, or against nodes the purify debuffs.
Can’t nullify already active buffs.
Ability to Stagger opponents is compromised in Stun-Immune matchups.
Fights that restrict Sasquatch’s ability to use his full range of basic attacks and specials will greatly reduce his damage potential.
Needs to spam SP1 to build up Rupture Debuffs, making him suicide un-friendly.
Regeneration from the Signature Ability is very RNG dependent, so you can’t rely on it to save you. If you need to heal, you have to launch a SP3 which comes at the cost of big damage from your SP2.
While Sasquatch won’t likely be considered a top mystic, he’s fun to play and has some practical uses. I’m not one to go for Featured Cavalier Crystals or grind the 5-Star Arena, but I’d certainly be happy pulling him from the next 5-Star Feature Crystal. He is a champion I would bring to 4/55, and possibly 5/65.
What are your thoughts on Sasquatch? Let me know in the comments below.
In week two of the Northern Expeditions (Canadian Difficulty), there is a node called Diss Track. This node requires the defender to have 3 Debuffs on them before you can do any damage. This can be 3 of the same Debuff, or can be a combination of different Debuffs. Passive effects do not count as Debuffs.
All of the defenders on the Diss Track lane are from the Mystic Class, so keep that in mind when putting together your team. Furthermore, Dormammu is immune to Bleed and Poison, so those Debuffs won’t help you in that fight.
Here’s a list of some champions that can get you through Diss Track. There may be some that I’ve missed, but this will give you some options if you are new to this node. The more Debuffs the champion spams, and the longer the Debuffs last, the easier the fight.
I think the top picks for this path include Human Torch, Void, and Sunspot. Human Torch and Void also counter the other node on the lane, Buffet, by reversing healing, while Sunspot is a Debuff-producing machine.
Diss Track Counters Human Torch (Don’t Use Pre-Fight Ability) Void Mr. Fantastic Quake Blade Black Widow Deadly Origin Elsa Bloodstone Gwenpool Nick Fury Night Thrasher Squirrel Girl Archangel Iceman Sunspot Sentinel Hyperion Medusa Vision Aarkus Claire Voyant Doctor Voodoo
Additions: Havok Captain America Infinity War
Who did I leave out? Leave your picks in the comments below.
Let’s break down how July’s Side Quest, Northern Expeditions, works so you can maximize your rewards.
If you remember Mole Man Expeditions, then you already know the setup for how Northern Expeditions will work. There will be 4 quests, with a new one unlocking each week in July. There are 4 difficulty levels: Heroic, Master, Epic, and Canadian. Canadian Difficulty is a new “Cavalier” tuned map, and you must be Level 60 to access it, but you do not need to have the Cavalier title.
Your quest team will be limited to 3 champions, and Sasquatch will be a random ambush, so be prepared to deal with him by adding a mystic counter to your team.
Canadian Difficulty will have an added Global node, and all paths but one will have linked nodes.
There will be no energy requirements for Northern Expeditions, and you can run all difficulty levels you have access to. All the rewards are on the paths, there are no completion or exploration rewards.
Week 1 (8 Paths) – Wednesday, July 1 at 1pm EST Week 2 – (8 Paths) – Wednesday, July 8 at 1pm EST Week 3 – (12 Paths) – Wednesday, July 15 at 1pm EST Week 4 – (12 Paths) – Wednesday, July 22 at 1pm EST
The Northern Expeditions ends on Wednesday, August 5 at 1pm, and all maps will close at that time so be sure to complete the event before the August event goes live.
Here is the break-down of rewards for Northern Expeditions. These are the total rewards than can be achieved by running every path of the event.
Overall Impressions: If you’ve played through Variant 1 and 2 already, you’re going to notice a decrease in both the difficulty and the number of paths in each chapter, which is a welcome improvement. Variant 3 is also different from the first two in that it has one common theme in the global nodes. If you have a strong tech roster (I would recommend having at least three 5* 4/55 or better tech champs for the average player), this is the easiest Variant for an initial clear and to 100%, because it does not require the extensive roster that the others do.
The general theme for Polar Opposites is that tech champions are the best choice because all non-techs suffer a -50% attack penalty. There is also a global node that increases the length of tech champion’s debuffs, and the debuff length is increased for each additional tech on your quest team. This leads to some useful interactions we’ll cover below. Furthermore, the mutant hunting robot Sentinel gets a unique global buff which allows it to get to 100 Analysis Charges much faster than normal.
Champion Recommendations& Tips
Sentinel First off, Variant 3 was specifically designed to give Sentinel a huge advantage. If you don’t have a 5* or 6*, even a 5/50 4* can do major work. While Sentinel doesn’t need to be awakened, it really helps with the damage ramp-up. At the most basic level, you want to get your Sentinel to 100 Analysis and then launch a SP2 for maximum damage. If you are unfamiliar with Sentinel and want to take a deeper dive into one of my favorite champions, check out my Champion Guide to Sentinel.
Stark Spider-Man He’s a great champ, but you’ve probably been focused on his SP2 damage, which is amazing of course. But what you don’t want to forget here is that the increased debuff timer also applies to the stun on his SP1, allowing you to stun-lock many opponents if you bring a team of Stark Spider-Man, Mile Morales, and three additional tech champs.
Warlock I’m not a Warlock owner, but after reviewing the lanes in Variant 3, Warlock might be the second best option after Sentinel. With his heal block, shock damage, power control, and immunities, he can take pretty much any fight.
Ghost Ghost is arguably the tech champ that benefits the least from the global nodes, since she doesn’t rely on damaging debuffs to do big damage. That being said, if you’re a great Ghost player and just want to bring the Quantum Trinity, you’re going to mow through a lot of Variant 3.
Doctor Octopus Doctor Octopus will give you huge value on a number of lanes that require power control options.
Vision Much like Doctor Octopus, Vision will bring power control to the table, and also is double immune, which is also helpful.
Star-Lord Yes, it’s time to get Star-Lord off the bench. The large health pools mean Star-Lord can get ramped-up and do some big time damage. I used Star-Lord for some of the easier fights so my Sentinel was at full health for the more difficult ones.
Other Options: Here’s a few other options to consider. Darkhawk is double immune, which will be useful for the Bioharard path. Guillotine 2099 is a champion I don’t have to play right now, but clearly does big damage. Iron Man Infinity War will benefit from the extended debuff timers and can be a good pinch hitter in certain match-ups, like against Iceman. Mysterio is a great counter to Domino and can save you some revives. Nebula is underrated, and her shock damage makes her one of the better options for the final boss.
If you choose to go outside the tech class, it will likely be because you need to counter a specific difficult defender like Korg, Mephisto, Magik, or Dormammu that deals unavoidable damage that the tech class doesn’t counter. Your usual go-to champions for these match-ups like Namor, Blade, Hulk Ragnarok, and Void will still work, it will just be a longer fight.
Overall Impressions: Variant 4 Waning Moon is the easiest of the four current Variants to 100% explore, assuming you have not skipped over a star-level in roster development. This is not likely to be an issue with veteran players, but newer players who rushed their progression may be a little weak in spots and will need to do some targeted rank-ups. Even if that is the case, the cost of ranking 2* and 3* champions isn’t cost prohibitive these days, and the rewards are certainly worth it.
Cheaply clearing Variant 4 is dependent on a few facts. The first, as always, is reading nodes and selecting proper quest teams. Next is dealing with a few select fights along the way, and understanding how you will have to alter your play-style and what counters to use.
These fights are: – Electro Boss in 1.1 – X-Force Deadpool Boss in 1.2 – Moon Knight Boss in 2.2 – Caustic Temper Mordo Mini Boss in 3.2 – Moon Knight Boss in 3.2
Details on all these encounters is contained in the individual chapter guides, linked above.
Here’s your Marvel Contest of Champions news brief for Friday, July 31, 2020.
Schedule Notes: New Alliance War Season 19 Rewards cut-off date. You must be in an alliance by 6pm EST for matchmaking, and play two wars with the alliance you finish the season with to be eligible for Season Rewards.
Here’s your Marvel Contest of Champions news brief for Thursday, July 30, 2020.
Schedule Notes: Round 1 of the 4 Star Basic Domino and X-23 Featured Arenas, and Round 2 of the 4 Star Basic Annihilus and Sasquatch Featured Arenas begin at 1pm EST. The Tier 4 Basic Arena begins at 6pm EST.
Lots of Summoner Smackdown Boss Rush content to enjoy today! Katy Candy had a bit of a rough time, while Seatin identified Havok as one of the best options for the Week 1 Alpha Quest. Lagacy relied heavily on Guillotine 2099, and finally RichTheMan has a whole list of counters.