Count Dooku was one of the most prominent leaders in galactic history. He was the leader of the Confederacy of Independent Systems and a Sith Lord. He was once a Jedi who studied under Master Yoda and trained Qui-Gon Jin. He is regarded as one of the best duelists in the Galaxy. His prowess with Form II Makashi made him a formidable opponent for even the most powerful Jedi.
In Shatterpoint, he fits his role well. He is a defensive but powerful Primary unit. He is a good leader for Separatist and Droid lists, but maybe not the best. I am personally not a big fan of him but I will try my best to be as objective as possible.
- 7 Squad Points
- 4 Force Points
- 10 Stamina/ 3 Durability
- Primary | Force User - Separatist Alliance - Sith
Dookus's key feature here is that he is a seven SP Primary. That means, in theory, that he should be one of the more powerful units in the game. In practice, however, this is not really the case from what I've seen. He is certainly no slouch, but he has a few glaring issues in my opinion. One excellent thing that he does bring is four Force Points. The value of Force Points in this game cannot be talked about enough, and he brings four plus an okay way to refresh a few.
He is durable. Ten stamina is a really solid spot to be in, especially with three durability. I have played a lot of Shatterpoint since it came out and I can say that I have never seen a unit with three durability get removed from the table. I think I have only seen five units total be removed. That is to say, with three durability he should be around for the whole game.
His tags are okay, two are meh or bad, and one is very good. Force user does nothing but hinder him so far, by way of Grievous and Inquisitors. Sith has not done anything for him so far. Separatist Alliance, on the other hand, does a ton. It, like Galactic Republic and likely Rebel or Empire, is an absolutely fantastic tag to have. There are so many units that have abilities that proc from this tag. It makes list-building with him super easy in my opinion.
Leader of the Separatist Army - This ability is wonderful. The fact that it allows both Dooku and the chosen character to Dash is wicked. All abilities that proved extra moves, free or otherwise, are amazing. They get even better when you can move multiple characters. This ability is great if you need to move Dooku to a more relevant position before taking any actions. This can also allow you to gain control of up to two active objectives during his turn if you're able to move an allied character to a scoring position.
Surely You Can Do Better - This ability looks amazing on paper. In reality, it is not as good as it seems it should be. It brings me to one of my main issues with Dooku and what I like to call "The Dooku Problem." This is an issue that extends to a few other units in the game as well. The Dooku problem is something that is seen all throughout tabletop gaming in general. Dooku's value in any given game of Shatterpoint is almost directly tied to how your opponent acts. A good player will spend the entire game avoiding him because 1/2 to 3/4 of his abilities only matter if they trigger them. This ability is a prime example of that fact. If your opponent chooses to attack Dooku, then this ability is wonderful. If your opponent chooses to not attack Dooku, then this ability is useless. That said, assuming your Dooku is getting attacked frequently, this ability is glorious. The ability to just flat-out-stop strikes from coming in is super cool. It is a really good way to keep him alive and well. It's tough to say how often and how much Force you should spend on this ability, but spending three Force means that Dooku will remain unwounded from that attack, then I would do it 100% of the time.
"The Dooku Problem" TLDR: If an ability's value is dictated by your opponent, then said ability is not very valuable.
Twice the Pride, Double the Fall - "Aha! Dooku's best one-liner, I hope it's a really cool and good ability!"... "Oh, oh no." Once again, albeit slightly less so, this ability suffers from The Dooku Problem. This ability's value is directly tied to actions that your opponent takes. Now, I'm not saying that reactive characters are necessarily bad, but if one-half or more of a unit's abilities are reactive, they're likely not going to be super good.
For the sake of this article and Dooku lovers out there, let's just assume for a minute that your opponent is allowing you to trigger this ability. It is quite good. Obviously, this ability is meant to mostly be used when Dooku himself is defending, but it is still possible to proc elsewhere. The hard part is that this ability trigger is random when Dooku is not the defender. It is slightly less random, tho significantly more expensive when Dooku is the defender (due to Surely You Can Do Better). Now, in my experience and the experience of other players I have talked to about this, Twice the Pride is an ability that might as well be blank. It is an ability that in maybe 15-20 games with or against Dooku has come up zero times. There are two main reasons for that: 1. The triggering event is, at best, expensive and, at worst, never going to happen. 2. This ability only even has a chance of triggering, if your opponent attacks Dooku or a unit near him, which they don't have to do and is quite easy to avoid.
Side note: Magnaguards, while thematic, seem almost anti-synergistic with Dooku. He wants to be targeted with attacks, but they won't let him. Just a weird little observation and something to consider when building/playing.
Brave, but Foolish - Okay, look, I really want to like Dooku. He is such a cool character and one of the dopest-looking minis we have seen for Shatterpoint, but damn. This ability is affected significantly less by The Dooku Problem than the previous two abilities. It is highly unlikely, and probably a bad idea, that your opponent goes the entire game without attacking or wounding any of your Primary or Secondary units. That does not make it impossible, but it is highly unlikely.
This ability is Dooku's second-best ability by default. Objectively speaking, it is not the best Force refresh we have seen in the game, probably not even the best Force refresh in his box (Jango). It will probably proc at least twice in a given game, which is just not enough. When you can get Force refreshes you will have control over and can proc more effectively on better Primaries, this ability is just a really hard sell. The second clause of this ability redeems it a tiny little bit, but still not quite enough to outsell the other options, in my opinion.
Form II Makashi
Six attack dice at range four and seven in melee is a really good start. His ranged attack is backed up with a pretty awful ranged attack expertise chart. One to three expertise giving only a strike and one extra damage is rough for a unit that should be quite powerful. His melee expertise here is the opposite, it is amazing. generating at least two crits at every level is insane and that is the worst it gets. Two crits and a strike is not a bad upgrade from level one to two, but level five and up is amazing. Three crits from five expertise is a pretty nice trade-off and one of the better top rows we've seen.
His combat tree is one of the funkiest looking ones in the game so far, but all paths lead to a max of six successes. He is maxing out at ten damage from six successes or eleven if you get an expertise on his ranged attack. Ten is a super solid number to be getting and ties him in second place with Vader and Anakin after Grievous' native eleven. His first column is a decently hard choice and really comes down to what the board is looking like. Damage plus reposition is really solid, but instead, you could get a shove and also move your opponent. Column three is your next choice and I think, depending on what you did in the first column, both choices are viable. If you can manage to pull off three shoves, ten damage, and a reposition, you're going to be in a very good spot.
His defenses on this stance are good. Five defense dice at range is okay, but seven in melee is incredible. His expertise chart is not bad, but not super good either. He's getting only one block at both levels, and either one or two Crit Deletes. Crit Deletes are very good and slightly better than blocks, but he's still only getting three results. This expertise chart is really good against other Primaries, specifically other Sith or Jedi, but that's all the more reason why your opponent should avoid Dooku.
This stance is a little more ranged-focused than his last one, but still decent in melee. He's getting eight attack dice at range four and six attack dice in melee. His ranged expertise is a huge step up from his other stance. It's generating at least one crit at all levels and one damage at all levels. This is a really good way to guarantee his ranged attacks will do at least something. His melee expertise is still good, but less flashy than the other one. It's still generating a good amount of crits, but you're getting a smaller ratio of expertise to crit. I think that's okay though, because this stance clearly wants him to be zapping as many folk as possible.
This combat tree is a lot more straightforward, but with less variation. It maxes out at seven damage from five successes, or eight with expertise. Seven is not a bad start, but it's relatively low for a combat primary, especially a seven SP one. He is also generating a pretty wicked amount of conditions and abilities. Two Heals on Column Two can really come in clutch when you need it, and with how reliable his expertise charts are, you should be able to get it right when you need to. His bottom row is hilarious. Being able to drop three out of four possible conditions from one attack is incredible.
His defenses on this stance are a bit more reliable but spike less. He goes from five and seven dice on Makashi to six and six here. It's a good this that his ranged defenses gain an extra die here since he wants to be shooting his lightning anyway. His defensive expertise here is less flashy than his last but generates more blocks. I'm still on the fence about which is better, but I am leaning toward Makashi. Crit Deletes are very valuable, even if you generate fewer blocks.
Squad and Strike Team Ideas
Before I wrap up today's article, I am just going to cover a few different Squads and Strike Teams I have tried, I recommend trying, or I think could be good.
Opening Weekend Dominator
- Asajj Ventress
- B1 Droids
This list is one that was very good and very popular right at release. It was a list that stomped my clones and me around quite a bit before learning how to fight Dooku and Droids. Jango is a really good addition to almost every list. Kalani is exceptional for both Droid supports. In the right hands, I think this list can still be pretty good.
- B1 Droids
This is very similar to the Grievous Asajj Full droids list that I've seen running around but with this, you have to take three-point supports in order to field Grievous and Dooku. I think it puts in a pretty good amount of work and I like having Greg (Grievous) to play a little more on the aggro side while Dooku sits back and holds important points.
Overall, I think Dooku can be okay. I know a lot of people who are down on him, including myself but I know just as many people who think he is one of the best units in the game. He's defensive and can be easy to play around, but maybe once more missions drop he will come into the limelight.
Thanks for reading!