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Testacornibus: When an Unstoppable Force meets an Immovable Object

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Introduction

Hello everyone. This is something new I'm doing. I saw the other day that some people were asking for some creature analysis, and thought "Hey, that sounds cool to write about". So I think I will be doing a weekly series featuring one (or in special cases TWO) creatures and their relevancy. But I'm a bit indecisive, so I decided that maybe YOU guys should choose the creatures based off the theme of the week, and I'll see who gets voted and have something written up for you all. So let's kick this off with my personal favorite unique Testacornibus.

Unboosted

So, 2.9 has happened. Resilients got a change, and while some people may argue they got better or worse, some resilients got direct changes. Smilonemyes (for some reason) lost armor and has a running ability with a delay, skoonasaurus got restricted group distraction changes to an instant distracting impact (again, why?), and then there was Testacornibus, who received the biggest overhaul of all the resilients. It gained a counter in power heal, more hp which helps power heal, more attack which benefits its other THREE heals, more armor, it lost resilient impact for cleansing decelerating impact, and also gained 1 point of speed. So let’s start off with the base stats and moveset as seen here:

testa stats

Let's start off with testacornibus unboosted to get a nice feel for it. When you look at it, nothing really changed THAT much. The extra attack is nice as is the hp and armor. The counter heal is good, but doesn't really stop the creatures it's weak to. The new impact is great at cleansing, but it's not that far off from old resilient impact. If anything, the biggest unboosted change it got was the point of speed. That speed tier is super important in a unique meta and allows testa to outspeed poukendactylus and smilonemyes while tying with magnapyritor, utarhinex, indoraptor, and stygidarex. And with a kit with devastation, setting up testa with only a 1 turn delay is super deadly. It's still going to lose to chompers like Rex, mortem, allo gen 2, tryo, and so on.... Unless it's set up. Then it kills all of them except a few like tryko, but But if you can't bypass armor, you'll really struggle. And if you want to leave? Too bad, you'll just make a lot of your progress disappear. In order to reliably kill testa with monolorhino on a swap, you need to get it down to 150 hp as it will heal when you leave. Ceramagnus reliably does the job with 400 hp left. Odds are with testacornibus, you’re not going to leave.

The arena

Now, what about with boosts? Boosts can change everything. Something like alloraptor can really drop in value while something like dodocevia or gorgosaurus can really go up in value. So, how do boosts affect testacornibus? Well, let's just say testa really hits its stride in the arena. And to help me here, I have asked many people from all over to gather their opinions on ol’ Bambi to help you gain better insight to what his place in the meta is. Before we go on, I’d like to thank the following people for giving me their insights as well:


IDGT and PracticeKat from Apex Predators

Kelociraptor and Prominence from Kelliance

Ronan and Allinpatrick from my very own T wreckz

Temerity from RexOntheBeach

Hael and Bart from Gamepress

1. Why is Testa just good by itself (how do boosts, it's stats, abilities, and resistances make it so good)? 

Let’s start off with the first question. So why is Testa so good by itself? Well we sort of already covered this, but to recap let’s go over testa’s stats and abilities. 2 moves cleanse everything. 2 moves are precise. It has 4 heal abilities. 2 moves can slow. One move can shield and speed up while healing. And one is a x3 multiplier. It has decent attack, high speed, high armor, decent hp, and a standard 5% critical hit chance. As for resistances, I’ll cover why those are more lethal later. Now, let’s get boosting. When it comes to boosts, PracticeKat points out that with Testacornibus, you really only need to boost 2 of the 3 stats. If this is true for any creature, it’ll probably do well, and Testacornibus is no different. PK says focus on HP and attack, that way you help make that armor stat more lethal while making the swap-in heal and on escape moves more lethal as well. As for speed, well due to the slower meta at the moment, Testacornibus doesn’t really need much. Maybe a point or two is good, but that’s it. But at the end of the day, you could have something with 7000 hp healing over 700 damage every time you touch it.

2. What are its biggest flaws in its kit/ stats/resistances?

3. What are Testa's biggest threats? Worst matchups.

Onto the second and third question now. Now when you look at something, you always have to see both the ups AND the downs, and Testacornibus has a few, but not many. First up, almost everyone pointed out that this kind of kit struggles against REALLY bulky creatures like Mammolania and Entelolania, as well as shielders like Diorajasaur. And speaking of dio, anything that can really pierce armor with good HP will do fine. Trykosaurus, Mortem, Thor, Spinoconstrictor, Grypolyth, and even T. Rex will all take it down. But this really isn’t surprising. Temerity answered question 2 by saying it’s a pure resilient. What did you expect? It’s no shock that something that is obviously a tank is losing to big chompers. I agree. That’s like saying mortem is bad JUST because it loses to something like Poukandactylus. It shouldn’t be a surprise. Before we move on there is a catch that I have mentioned previously that Hael also brought up. Let’s say you have mortem in your hand, and Testa just took out one of your creatures. If you want to bring in mortem, you want to take out testa right there and then, because devastation is ready next turn, and if you leave it on a nice amount of hp PLUS the counter heal, odds are a swapper like Ceramagnus can’t finish the job on the swap. Spinoconstrictor seems to be the current favorite, especially as evasive wound got fixed and it got a major overhaul in the same patch as testacornibus, as well as because it can avoid the power heal by stalling with priority moves while having an on-escape move. Another “good” idea is to bring in Monolorhino. There’s a problem with this though. While Monolorhino is perfect for taking down Testacornibus, you basically reveal your hand and let your opponent know you have Monolorhino, and they can see the stats on it and plan around it. But with Testa, it might just be necessary sometimes.

4. Who are Testa's best friends? Why do many of its counters like Tryko and Entelolania fail?

For question 4, let's take a few steps back to question 1. There is one resistance Testacornibus really loves to show off, and that's its pin immunity. No matter the situation, Testacornibus can always bounce to something else if need be. And most people that I asked had 3 creatures come to mind. Compsalocalus, Scorpius Rex gen 3, and Monolorhino seem to be its best friends. Why is that? Well let’s go back to the counters to testa. Entelolania is weak to stuns and damage over time, which Scorpius can dish out with ease. And because there is little point in using resilient impact on Testacornibus with its immunities, PFS is usually the way to go as Entelolania. Monolorhino can also really be a pain to the hairy turtle being weak to stuns and also having shields and definite impact. And this is the issue that many people who come up against Bambi face. They are worried about what’s hiding in the back. Is there a Compsalocalus in there for my Grypolyth? A Scorpius waiting for my Trykosaurus or Mortem? Testacornibus can always bounce and come back to dish out big damage another time. Many big fierce creatures are dying out to many of these new creatures that have abilities to really reduce damage, allowing resilient creatures like Testacornibus to run wild. Other friends include Ceramagnus to just come in and dish out big damage and, as Kelociraptor pointed out, Antarctovenator thanks to swap-in distraction allowing it a free swap-in against fierce like mortem. And for bleeders, Bart brought up that while they are a great way around Testacornibus, thanks to its stun immunity and the fact it has 2 cleansing moves, bleeders will still not have an easy time.

5. Could you give insight about the awful Testa vs Testa situation going on?

I asked about the Testacornibus mirror matchup, as I have seen many people complain about this mirror, and when you look at it, it looks awful. You have 2 armored creatures constantly healing while dishing out devastation and digging in to stay on the field. You can’t swap out or a lot of your progress is gone. My alliancemates, Allinpatrick and Ronan, both described it as a never-ending Grypolyth vs Grypolyth, but worse. They both said it’s a battle of patience and sometimes one party will just give up to preserve the sanity of both players.

6. If you had to rank Testa right now in the arena, where would you rank it? Like a number position. 1st, 2nd, 118th, and so on.

I finally asked about ranking Testacornibus. This can be hard, as there are 250+ creatures in the game at this moment. However, the responses I got were pretty similar. Out of the 9 people I interviewed, 5 said it was a solid #1, Bart said no less than #2, Kelociraptor says “at the very top”, Prominence said no less than #5, and Hael said probably at #4. When it comes to creature ranking, being top 8 is very good as a team consists of 8 creatures. So for Testa to be voted no less than top 5 as the lowest response is very impressive. As for me personally, I don’t want to be biased (as it’s my favorite unique) and just say #1, but looking at everything I’d easily say top 3. MAYBE Skoona edges it out, but when you look at everything, Testacornibus is really tough to beat.

Using it in battle

Now, how would you play with Testacornibus in battle. I asked IDGT and he gave me some tips. He said start early with it. That way you have a better chance to bounce to something as nothing probably has been knocked out. You don’t want to throw it out later as this is when mortem usually comes out to play nowadays and Testa isn’t a fan of Mortem with devastation on a 2 turn delay. But when you start early, you can just tank, dish out damage, and then get a large hit in when the next creature comes in. Testa is designed to come in and punch (or kick) massive holes into teams while sticking around to heal later. Or, if you know they don't have any big chompers left, you can use Testacornibus as a closer. When they leave in a 2v2 scenario, Testa is going to punish a lot of your progress by using on escape heal and probably hitting you with devastation. So all-in-all, Testa is pretty good in most battle scenarios. 

Closing Remarks

So, with all of this information, should testacornibus be nerfed? Many said tweak its resistances, especially the stun resistance to help counteract the heals. I think its fine. The problem is that fierce creatures are really struggling, and this allows testacornibus to really shine. If you want to nerf testa, make fierce somewhat relevant again. Remember all of testa’s best friends? Well 2 slaughter fierce creatures while the third has a distraction move to tank those hits. When fierce start to shine, testa will be toned down, but for now it’s sitting at the top of the arena. But for now, testacornibus is a serious meta threat and should be treated with major respect.

I thank you all for reading. If you want to vote for next week's creature, be sure to join the JWA discord. There is a link down below. Hope to be back next week. Happy hunting.

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About the Author(s)

Hi there, I'm Eduardo. I love catfish, and you're looking at my Bullhead Axel here. Huge fisherman and half the time I'm out the door at 4 a.m. as those fish won't catch themselves. Love to cook and circus peanuts are delicious. 

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