Annotated Prismata Openings by Will Ma

Hi all!

Sorry that the blog’s been a bit quiet lately; I’ve been out of town, spending most of my time locked in an underground bunker working exclusively on Prismata single-player content—both the campaign (a massive project that I’m hugely excited about) and an upcoming puzzle pack (that we’ll be announcing soon!)

In the mean time, Prismata creator and Lunarch Studios co-founder Will Ma has provided some really interesting opening analyses from some of his recent ladder games. The games are quite fascinating and focus on using an early Animus to pressure the opponent into committing to a specific line of play that can later be exploited through a tech transition.

Check out the full discussion on the Prismata subreddit. Summary below:


A guest article on

Hi all,


Just a quick note: I have a guest post up on /u/evanisvinks14‘s new web site, The site hopes to host a ton of community-written Prismata articles on a wide range of topics, and Evan is still accepting submissions. We’re very supportive of these types of community initiatives, so I’ve contributed myself by authoring a strategy article on Trinity Drone there. It’s here if you’d like to have a look.


I look forward to lots of other great content on Evan’s blog. Evan’s been one of our greatest ambassadors, moderating our subreddit and giving out tons of keys. We owe him tremendous thanks!

Longer build times in Prismata 1

Hi all,

Today, I’m going to discuss one of my favourite mechanics in Prismata: build time. Specifically, build times greater than one, as employed in the design units like Tarsier, Apollo, and Zemora Voidbringer.


Here are all the Prismata units that currently have a build time greater than one:

Unit Build Time                                                                   
Tarsier 2
Antima Comet 2
Apollo 2
Centrifuge 3
Endotherm Kit 4
Frostbite 2
Iso Kronus 2
Nitrocybe 2
Resophore 5
Scorchilla 2
Wincer 3
Thorium Dynamo 2
Zemora Voidbringer 6


Prismata Balance – Vivid Drone, Unit Stats, and a New Survey! 2

Hi all!

A bunch of random things to discuss this week…



First and foremost, we have another alpha player survey online. There are questions about skins/emotes, unit balance, the armory card-flipping minigame, and more. Please fill it out; your responses are extremely helpful!




We collect a huge number of statistics on Prismata units—how often they are bought, how often players win with them, and how balanced they are. In this article, I wanted to share a few of our findings.


Defending against Frostbites in Prismata

I haven’t written a true strategy article in a little while, but today I’m going to post a few words on one of the most controversial Prismata units—Frostbite. Though recently nerfed (its buildtime increased from 1 to 2 in the last big set of balance changes), Frostbite remains a formidable unit that must be dealt with very carefully.

The current Frostbite. Looks cute, but it’s a nasty, evil little thing.

Frostbite is certainly a unit worth studying, as it appears in more games than many other units due to Frost Brooder and Endotherm Kit spawning copies of it.

Speaking of Frost Brooder… you may recall that it was temporarily removed in our last balance patch (because we wanted to modify it in a way that required some small tweaks to the Prismata engine and bots). Well, we’re happy to announce the new version:


The new Frost Brooder! It will go live this week. Its supply is still 4.

The new Frost Brooder is actually 1 gold cheaper than its previous incarnation—its cost has been decreased from 5RR to 4RR. However, it comes with a huge caveat: the Frostbites that it spawns have Lifespan 3, meaning that you only have 3 chances to use them! This makes it much more difficult to store up a huge pile of Frostbites, and presents a ton of really interesting strategic questions, since your Frostbites are now “use-em-or-lose-em”. We had a ton of fun play-testing this one and we think you’ll enjoy it.

Now, onto the main topic of the article (a part of this has appeared on Reddit before, but the post has been somewhat expanded):


Thorium Dynamo… the Craziest Prismata Econ Unit

Hi everyone!

I just wanted to make a quick post to talk a little bit about one of the crazier units that we’ve released recently: Thorium Dynamo.

We’re making a change to the unit, which is shown below (its ability will now be much weaker, converting GGG to 3 gold instead of 4). However, I wanted to also give a bit of background on the unit and explained why we designed it in its current state.

New Thorium

A proposed nerf to Thorium Dynamo, which will go live at midnight EDT on Friday. The change, highlighted in pink, is to reduce the gold produced by its ability to 3

Thorium Dynamo is different from most other Prismata units in a lot of ways:


Balancing Prismata Openings Through Unit Design – part 4

Hello everyone!

I’m back again today to drone on some more about Prismata openings. Specifically, I’ll be focusing on how the Prismata design team investigates claims of busted Prismata unit combos, and how this has led to the creation of the secret opening book that I mentioned all the way back in part 1.

But first… OBLIGATORY INTERLUDE FOR SKIN SPOILERS! We just got finished with a few skins from our Medieval theme, check them out:


Time for a summer BREACH PARTY! 1

Hi everyone!

Tomorrow is the 3-month anniversary of our April Fool’s event, where we added 10 crazy new units to the ladder for a 24-hour period. Well, get ready to call in sick tomorrow, because we’re doing it again. Only better.


No, this will not be a new skin.

This time, we’re throwing a 24-hour BREACH PARTY on the Prismata ladder, in celebration of the release of 3 new Prismata units with one thing in common—they all help provide ways to execute the unusual Prismata strategy of not buying Walls.


At midnight EDT tonight, the BREACH PARTY will begin.

Here’s what we’ll happen:

  • At midnight, the server will briefly go down for a mini-update in which BREACH PARTY MODE WILL BE ENABLED FOR 24 HOURS.
  • The following three new units will be added: [Borehole Patroller, Tantalum Ray, Thorium Dynamo]. See below for their stats.
  • During BREACH PARTY MODE, Prismata’s arena will temporarily undergo the following rule changes:
    • The following 3 units will be 10 times as likely to appear in arena games: Borehole Patroller, Tantalum Ray, Thorium Dynamo.
    • The following 10 units will be 3 times as likely to appear in arena games: Trinity Drone, Venge Cannon, Gauss Fabricator, Cluster Bolt, Iso Kronus, Wild Drone, Shredder, Ebb Turbine, Militia, Iceblade Golem.
    • Embargoes will be applied after the above changes. For example, if Thorium Dynamo is embargoed by one player, it will show up with 3.33x its usual frequency instead of 10x its usual frequency.
  • Custom games will not be affected.
  • A balance patch will also be deployed at midnight. See here for details. Yes, Frostbite is getting nerfed. 😛


Announcing three new Prismata units:


Balancing Prismata Openings Through Unit Design – part 3: Variable Rush Timings

Hi everyone!

Continuing from where we left off last time, we’re going to talk about one of my favourite Prismata topics—rush timings. Every Prismata player has been in a situation where they’ve been caught off guard and lost to their opponent’s early Redeemer, Shadowfangs, or Tia Thurnax. But when do these rushes work, when do they fail, and how do we modify our unit designs to ensure that that they don’t lead to autowins?

Redeemer's new look.

Sick of fighting, this Redeemer took up a new career.

The answer is a bit complex, and requires a deep understanding of when rushes themselves are strongest. Get ready for a somewhat theoretical (but fun) discussion!



Our Largest Balance Patch Ever 1

Today at 12 noon EST, we deployed our largest Prismata balance patch thus far. A total of 14 units have received changes. In this article, I’m going to provide an explanation for each change, explaining our thought processes, and what we’ll be looking toward doing with future units and balance changes.


Militia – health has been increased from 2 health to 4 health.

This is a simple change that will hopefully make some Militia games a bit more interesting. We found that, while players often bought Militias during the opening to take advantage of their gold-producing ability while the opponent constructed early defenses, Militias had little use in the late game, often being simply worse than Steelsplitters. Now, with higher HP, the decision between Militias and Steelsplitters will be more interesting later in the game.