- 1 Introduction
- 2 Game Strategies
- 3 Specific Matchup
- 4 Conclusion
Sirens are famous for their ability to lure and charm people. And now, that can bewitch people to tumble down and undo their efforts! But without a bit of strategy, it cannot reach its maximum potential…
At the start of the game, choose the direction of the Siren's song. Instead of moving, you can force one or more opponent workers one space in the direction of the Siren’s song to unoccupied spaces at any level.
In order to simplify the notation, every time we refer to an orthogonal wind, we mean direction South (↓) and whenever we refer to a diagonal wind, we mean direction South-East (↘).
The first thing that Siren needs to realize is that:
- If she sets the wind orthogonally, there are 5 columns of length 5 in which she can use her power. Moreover, there are 5 squares (the fifth row) over which Siren cannot use her power.
- If she sets the wind diagonally, there are more diagonals, but only one of length 5, which is the A5-E1 diagonal (we still have two diagonals of lengths 2, 3 and 4). Moreover, there are 9 squares (the fifth row and the A column) over which Siren cannot use her power.
So the first question to ask is “which wind direction is better, ↓ or ↘ ?”. Taking the previous observations into consideration, the natural choice would be the orthogonal direction, but there still could be some cases where Siren would prefer the diagonal direction. In the following analysis, the wind direction is assumed to be South (↓).
Siren should build in row 5 (north) and avoid at all cost to build in row 1. An opponent in row 5 can be forced four times while an opponent in row 1 can not even be forced. So you have to understand how important it is for Siren to play in row 5. Even if the opponent can create an attack in row 5, it will be very hard for them to win (due to several reasons).
However, if the opponent is playing in row 1, they can create some serious threats. A very deceiving (for the opponent) plan for Siren is to purposely let the opponent move to a good position in row 5 so that the opponent places more blocks near row 5 (benefiting Siren). In these cases, I would advise the opponent to just ignore Siren and don’t fall for her plan (play in row 1!).
Siren should keep building near North and don’t be afraid to let the opponent move up to a level 2, since she can probably force the worker out of there in the next move. This strategy is especially effective if Siren builds a level 2 in B4 and there is a level 0 in B3. If the opponent moves to B4, it will fall in the next move. The opponent can still build in B2, but they can do this forever and eventually Siren will get a better position. For example,
1. S: a5-b5, build B4(2) [this would normally allow the opponent to control 8 winning squares…] O: a4-b4, build B3(1) [the opponent avoids falling two levels]
2. S: force b4-b3, build B4(3) O: b3-a4, build B4(X)
3. S: force a4-a3, build A5(2) [threatening to win in A5 in two turns] O: a3-a4, build A3(2) 4. S: force a4-a3, build C5(1) [and there is no way for the opponent to defend both A5 and C5]
I hope that from this example you have realized the importance of building in row 5. On the other hand, if there were more blocks near row 1, it would probably be possible for the opponent to come back into the game.
Furthermore, Siren should avoid domes, especially in row 1 or in the center. For example, a dome in B2, allows the opponent to stay in B3 without getting forced by Siren (and a worker in B5 can only be forced twice).
An endgame will usually be pretty good for Siren. If she can force the opponent, she can stay in the same square, which can be very good in such situations. She needs to be careful about where she creates winning threats (thus creating domes). For example, the opponent won’t be able to make use of a dome in row 5 (the opponent cannot be in row 6) so, if Siren creates a winning threat just to get a better position (not really intending to win), it is probably a good idea to do it in row 5.
Whenever a power can control Aphrodite, it is usually very good (e.g. Charon, Dionysus, Eris) and this is what makes this matchup interesting. If Aphrodite isn’t careful enough, she will be dragged away from Siren’s workers and she will then not be able to defend. Still, it won’t be easy for Siren to create such situations and this is a balanced matchup in general.
Apollo and Charon (and maybe Scylla)
Being two of the strongest powers of the game, it is amazing that Siren is one of the few powers which will give them a headache. It is definitely possible to win this matchup playing with Siren.
Siren can force Artemis one square, but Artemis can recover two squares. I would pick Artemis in this matchup but without underestimating Siren.
This is a matchup in which Clio’s coins are very effective, especially if they are in the center. Not only a Clio’s worker standing on a coin cannot be forced, but also a worker cannot be forced into a coin. For example, if the wind is ↓, Clio is in C4 and there is a coin in C3, that worker cannot be forced south.
Domers (Asteria, Atlas, Selene)
The more domes there are on the board, the weaker Siren becomes. For Atlas and Selene, they can place a dome in every move. For Asteria, she cannot do it, but when she places the dome, it is anywhere on the board (which can make up for the wait). All these gods are strong against Siren and I would not even recommend playing on Siren’s side (you will be smashed).
It is interesting putting two controllers playing together. Although Eris should be stronger, there is always room for Siren to create deadly attacks.
Europa & Talus
At each move, Europa can relocate the token and thus she has (almost) always the possibility to prevent that worker from being forced (since it can only be forced in one direction). This makes Europa very strong in this matchup and I would choose her without taking too much into consideration.
Forcing Graeae away from a defending zone is a nightmare and that’s why this will be very difficult for Graeae. I almost would say not to even try it, but if you do and are able to win with Graeae, give me a call.
Siren is very strong in this matchup. Being able not to move against Harpies is just great and so Harpies will have to play differently if they want to win.
The fact that Hermes has full control of his workers location, makes it easier for him to make Siren’s ability less effective. Anyhow, he will eventually have to move up, and this will be in a turn in which he can only move once. This is an interesting matchup.
This is a very interesting matchup where there will be many situations where Siren cannot use her power since in the next turn Pan would move down two (or more) levels and win. This said, this matchup can go to any side and I would definitely recommend it.
If, like me, you thought Pegasus would have no problem converting this game into a win (you are forced to the ground but then you can move up in the next turn), I’m afraid you’re wrong. It won’t be easy for Pegasus to play this matchup and this can actually turn into a very interesting combination.
Another OP god against which Siren is actually able to put up a fight! Her ability is useful in three ways in this matchup: separate Poseidon’s workers (a separated Poseidon usually sucks), force Poseidon out of high levels and force Poseidon from a level 0 to a higher level (so that he loses his power). Putting this all together, it won’t be that easy for Poseidon to win and it is even possible for Siren to turn the tables around.
Proteus holds on very well and this is another interesting matchup for you to consider.
Once again, Siren is actually able to face Triton. As stated before, I would advise a ↓Siren to build in row 5. Moreover, if Siren wants to have a chance in the endgame (most games involving Triton go to the endgame, if you don’t lose first), she should build domes in C5, C1, A3, E3 (especially C5) to reduce Triton’s mobility.
If the song is set South (↓), Urania will just play in the first row and create threats Siren cannot defend. For example, a level 2 Urania in A1, can threaten to win in E1, A5 and E5 (and this worker cannot be forced out of there by Siren). Urania should have a very comfortable game. If the song is set South-East (↘), the strategy for Urania is similar as she can play in the first row and E-column, especially A1, E1 and E5 (and even create winning threats in A5).
Siren is definitely not an easy power to master and it might take some games to get used to it. The wind can be set orthogonally or diagonally, which can lead to different possibilities just for the same matchup. Moreover, the first few moves are very important since they will dictate where the game will be played. Siren is not an excessively strong power, but if you are not careful enough, you might just be dragged away without being able to defend Siren’s threats.
Tier ranking: B