Sentinel Reclaimer – Uses & Synergies
Sentinel Reclaimer is the monthly reward card for July 2019. For your success in ranked play last month, you were rewarded with a 3-cost 2/3 Redguard that puts two items into your hand with its summon ability: one the neutral 1-cost +1/+0 Steel Dagger, and the second the blue 2-cost +3/+0 Steel Sword. In total this gives you 6/3 in stats for 6 magicka. The good news: you don’t even need to include this items in your decklist. Sentinel Reclaimer will just spawn them out of nowhere, making her one of the more powerful item pseudo-tutors in Legends (also see Item Tutors in The Elder Scrolls Legends).
Sentinel Reclaimer during Opening
To assess a card’s value during the opening phase, we need to see if it’s a good on-curve play. Sentinel Reclaimer has good stats for a 2-drop, but not for a 3-drop. In Intelligence we have 3-drops like Discerning Thief, Cunning Ally, Vigilant Ancestor, Daggerfall Mage and Master Swordsmith with similar or better stats. However, while the total stats Sentinel Reclaimer provides are not magicka efficient, it does provide card advantage and the ability to buff the attack of creatures during the opening phase of the game. There are also some interesting tricks you can do with Sentinel Reclaimer in the right deck (see section Synergies).
Sentinel Reclaimer as an On-Curve Play
But when is Sentinel Reclaimer a decent on-curve play? Imagine a situation in which you control the field lane. You can afford to play the reclaimer if you can dictate trades after all combat for that turn was resolved. On your next turn, the items will allow you to trade up, say, into a bigger guard that’s blocking your way. Therefore, we should consider Sentinel Reclaimer as an inclusion in proactive decks that aim to dominate through the field lane. This will allow us to make good use of her during the opening phase of the game.
Sentinel Reclaimer During Later Turns
If you draw her later, you can equip her items to other creatures on board. You might want to use the items to boost the attack of creatures with high health values to allow for some favorable trades. Alternatively, you can also boost your creatures attack as they are going face.
Sentinel Reclaimer at Parity
At parity, when both players are relying on their top deck, Sentinel Reclaimer can provide the most utility if you (and your opponent) have creatures on board. Ideally, you should be able to find an opportunity to trade-up with the items she provides, leaving you in control of field lane.
With no creatures in play, Sentinel Reclaimer can be effective in contesting field or threatening face. Here, the additional flexibility of keeping the items in hand or playing them on Sentinel Reclaimer can help you to play around runebreaks in a smart way. In particular, if you already have your opponent close to lethal, they will have to deal with her, as you can otherwise enjoy the 6 damage going face.
Sentinel Reclaimer when Winning
When you are winning, the 3 plus 1 points of damage her items provide can really make a difference. For one, you can equip the items in a way that gets your opponent to 6, 11 or 16. This can be much better, than getting your opponent to 7, 12, 17 or 9, 14, 19, for example.
You can also use this reach to finish off your opponent, and to skip their runes to avoid prophecies. It should be easy to at least skip one rune, but ideally, you can even put the items onto a creature with 7+ attack to skip the last two runes. This way, Sentinel Reclaimer can go a long way in securing victory against prophecy-heavy decks.
Again, the flexibility the items provide lets you either push face with everything or keep board control for your next turn. Unfortunately, they do not provide any health buffs, so be mindful of your creatures’ health when you trade.
Sentinel Reclaimer as a Turnaround
When you are in need of a turnaround, Sentinel Reclaimer on its own will not help you a lot. You get no guard, no drain, no ward, only more attack. This can help you remove a bigger threat from shadow lane, if you already have a creature there to contest it. Or, if you have a drain creature in play that you can equip the items to before it swings, you can heal a bit. There is some use during this phase of the game, but the card is certainly not great here…
Summary: Card Evaluation Using Quadrant Theory
Let’s put it in a nutshell. Sentinel Reclaimer can be a good card in a proactive deck that provides enough synergy. It allows you to pull some combat tricks and your opponent will need to remember that you have these items at your disposal when he is doing his trade calculations. If this forces them into making sub-optimal plays, Sentinel Reclaimer can add value on a completely different level.
Rating Scale: 1 – Very Weak. 2- Weak. 3- OK. 4- Strong. 5- Very Strong.
Item Synergy in Aggro Decks
The Strength attribute comes with a few Redguards that get additional buffs when equipped with items. The Rihad Brothers and Alik’r’ Survivalist will welcome the added weaponry from Sentinel Reclaimer. Similarly, Craven Conscript will unleash his power when equipped with an item as well.
Sentinal Reclaimer in Item Decks
For item decks, Sentinel Reclaimer gives you two items for one card. Skilled Blacksmith reduces their cost. This gives 6/3 in stats for four magicka, which is much better! If you get to equip them to Dragonstar Rider, you can get a lot of value from this resource extension. Needless to say that these items beautifully copy over to Gardener of Swords.
The Alliance War expansion brought a few interesting cards to item decks. Daggerfall Phantom is definitely a good target for Sentinel Reclaimer’s items, as he will return them when he dies. Make sure, though, that he does not get silenced (e.g. Lute).
Salvage lets you get back a large number of items with the same name from your discard pile and Telekinesis allows you to shift them between creatures which can provide a nice amount of burst damage.
Sparksmith deals 1 damage for each item equipped to a creature and Covenant Oathman or Seasoned Captain can buff them. Altogether, Sentinel Reclaimer is an interesting addition to item decks and can help to make item combo decks a little bit more consistent. Time to experiment and to have some fun…
Gaining Card Advantage
Oftentimes, an extra card in your hand can provide you additional card advantage or allow you to cycle through your deck faster. Cornerclub Gambler requires you to discard a card to draw two (if she survives). Discerning Thief and Palace Conspirator help you draw the right part of your deck by discarding unneeded cards and drawing new ones. All of them allow you to get more or better cards, and maybe the +1/+0 Steel Dagger is not as useful as something else you have included in your deck.
Houses of Morrowind introduced several cards that benefit from a 5-power creature being in play. The most prominent example is Mighty Conjuring, which summons a warded 8/8 Lava Atronach with breakthrough and guard. Sentinel’s Reclaimer’s items can easily turn a 4-power creature and a 2-power creature into a 5-attack threat. This will not only trigger Mighty Conjuring, but also Sixth House Amulet, Awakened Dreamer, Ash Oppressor, Ash Berserker, Fighters Guild Stewart, Ash Piercer or Servant of Dagoth. It’s definitely worth considering Sentinel Reclaimer in your Dagoth deck.
Sentinel Reclaimer’s two items can also be used to trigger the expertise mechanic more consistently, while providing at least a small body to contest on the board. Granted, the 2/3 remains understatted, but by being able to trigger the expertise effects of other creatures, it might be an interesting inclusion to expertise decks. Unfortunately, the expertise mechanic was not strong enough to see consistent play. Sentinel Reclaimer might help a little bit to push an expertise card here and there, but it is probably not enough for it to see more play.
Sentinel Reclaimer, I Summon Thee
Fleeting Apparition is one of those cards that doesn’t often make the cut, due to the randomness of its effect. However, with every new card with a summon effect you have to re-evaluate its usefulness. And Sentinel Reclaimer is just an amazing card to be pulled with Fleeting Apparition because it gets summoned, puts the two items into your hand, gets unsummoned, and you can play her again next turn. This adds items worth +8 attack into your hand. Put those onto a drain or a charge creature for a great turn 6 or 7 (more hints at cards with good synergy with Fleeting Apparition can be found in Creature Tutors in The Elder Scrolls Legends).
Other cards that allow you to get additional value from Sentinel Reclaimer‘s summon effect are A Night to Remember, Winterhold Illusionist or Ulfric’s Uprising. Brilliant Experiment, Dark Rebirth and Doppelganger also allow you to clone her with the intention of drawing +8 attack worth of items from her.
Sentinel Reclaimer, I Unsummon Thee
Inspired by Fleeting Apparition, you can also generate double value from her summon effects by using cards like Close Call or Fear Totem. When you play her, swing and then unsummon the Redguard, you’ll get two damage and +8 attack worth across four items into your hand.
Sentinel Reclaimer looks like another pretty good monthly reward card. She promotes synergy for item decks and provides reach for proactive decks that dominate the board. She can also be an interesting ingredient to some combo decks. Personally, I would love to get a Sparksmith burn combo deck to work. It’s probably not good, but should be fun to play!
Let’s hope the next monthly reward cards are equally strong to keep players engaged with ranked play during the summer months.