HIGHLANDER Card of The Week #3
                           Week of 19 November 1995
            Copyright 1995, Steve Crow (scrow@chop.isca.uiowa.edu)

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JUMP

Dodge

"With a flair of acrobatics, you jump out of the way and dodge this attack.
Your next attack this turn is hidden."
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	Duncan took a final step back, avoiding the flurry of blows that 
Slan had unleashed against him.
     
	It had been over three years since "Slan the Cat" had  thrown himself 
over the side of the bridge, after Duncan had slashed his face and missed 
taking the giant's head by inches.  It had been inevitable that Quince would 
return to seek vengeance for the disfigurement hidden beneath his metal mask.
     
	Duncan's heart was filled with pity.  "It's a pity someone hasn't 
taken his head since then," he thought to himself.
     
	The Highlander cut back, slashing down from his right shoulder.  
Rather then parrying, Slan stepped backwards beyond the katana's reach.
     
	The maneuver's significance was not lost on Duncan.  Although he had 
only witnessed Slan's battle with Connor from a distance, his kinsman's words 
rang through his head:
     
	"When he drops back and seems as if he is going to make an upper 
attack, keep your eye upon the sword's pommel.  If it points directly at you, 
beware.  That's how the bastard got me..."
     
	There was the sharp bark of a gunshot.  Duncan, already in motion, 
leapt upwards, passing over the metal dart that sought his heart.
     
	Drawing his knees up to his chest, Duncan rolled in midair.  The 
momentum took him over Slan's head, bringing him down on the other side.
     
	Without pausing for breath, Duncan spun around, using his momentum to 
add strength to the slash he aimed at Slan's left legs.
     
	Caught unawares, the giant tried to turn and block at the same time.  
Only the first effort succeeded.  Duncan felt his blade sink deeply into 
Quince's thigh.
     
	Roaring wildly, Slan slashed at Duncan.  As Duncan backed away, he 
smiled grimly.  That one was for Connor...but the next one is for me.

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	Jump is one of the most useful cards in the game and certainly the 
most useful of the dodge cards.  It allows the user to avoid six attack areas 
and then respond with a Hidden attack to any area.
     
	It should be remembered that, like all dodge cards, after playing a 
Jump you can attack to any area, whether you defended to that area or not.
     
	In first edition Highlander, only four Immortal types can freely play 
Jump.  Amanda and Duncan are allowed six each, while Richie and "generic" 
Immortals can use two.  Other Immortals require the use of Darius to play this 
card.
     
	Jump's uses shouldn't be underestimated, particularly by someone 
playing Duncan.  Its main value is that Jump is a Defense card, not a Special.  
This means that the resulting attack can be modified by another Special.  You 
can play a Power Blow, or a Combination to get a _second_ Hidden attack.  
After playing a Jump, you can make the first attack of a Battle Rage Hidden.
     
	Amanda is somewhat limited in her use of Jump, since the only attack-
related special she has, Seduce, is obvious when used.  Jumps for Amanda are 
best used to supplement her arsenal of dodge cards and help her with Head Shots 
(see below).
     
	Richie can play with one each of Amanda's and Duncan's Jump.  He does 
have better Amanda cards to choose from, but they are rares.  Richie already 
has some of Duncan's better restricted cards for his own (Master's Advice, 
Battle Rage), so he might want to take a Jump for emergencies.  Richie has 
most of the same attack-related Special cards as Duncan and benefits from 
using Jump in the same manner.
     
	Generic Immortals can also play with one Amanda and Duncan and always 
should.  They have most of the attack-related Special cards that Duncan does 
and Jump gives them two extra dodge-type cards.
     
	Another advantage of Jump is that it lets you avoid dodgeable special 
attacks (which go to the Middle Center area) and still make an attack.
     
	The greatest advantage of Jump is that, since you can play a Special 
with the resulting Hidden attack, this is currently the only way you can 
initiate a Hidden Head Shot. (You can also do it if your opponent does a Power 
Blow and isn't Duncan or Connor, but you have no control over that.)
     
	By doing this, it is true that you are giving your opponent a big hint 
as to where your attack is coming.  And if they have a Upper Center Block and 
can handle a Power Blow, you won't have gained much.
     
	If your opponent _doesn't_ have that fortuitous combination, they 
could have problems.  At the very least, they'll have to play an all-inclusive 
dodge (Dodge, Back  Away, Distract) to guarantee they avoid the Hidden Head 
Shot.
     
	If your opponent doesn't have a defense that includes all three upper 
areas, then she'll either have to Exert for a guaranteed defense, or risk a 
defense that doesn't cover all three upper areas.
     
	In this situation, upper corner attacks are the best to use for your 
Hidden attack, since the odds of your opponent blocking an Upper Center attack 
are significantly higher.
     
	(As always, Holy Ground/Retreat and Disappear will let your opponent 
see if she is being hit by the Head Shot and then negate it as necessary.)
     
	The flip side of the coin with Jump is that it is useless against an 
opponent's Head Shots.  If an opponent such as Duncan or Connor is playing a 
strong upper attack/head shot/power blow strategy, you might find yourself with 
unusable Jumps piling up in your hand.  All players have to use at least six 
non-upper attacks, so you may have to wait a while to play your six Jumps.  
You should eventually be able to do so.
     
	Ironically, against an opponent other than Duncan or Connor, try not 
to waste your Jumps to avoid Power Blows.  You're already going to get a Hidden 
attack:  why waste a Jump to get one?
     
	Overall, Jump's combination of providing a defense which covers six 
areas, not requiring an exertion to avoid a Power Blow, and giving you a Hidden
attack which can be supplemented by a Special card, makes it one of, if not 
_the_ most powerful Defense cards.

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Highlander is a protected trademark of Gaumont Television, used under 
license by Thunder Castle Games.  The card text is copyright 1995 by
Thunder Castle Games.  All rights reserved.
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[Editor's Note: You'll notice that this installment of the Card of the Week
differs significantly from the previous ones.  It was composed by Steve
Crow rather than myself and takes place in an alternate timeline (yes,
*another* one =) in which all the immortals depicted in the persona cards
are still alive and fighting for the Prize.  We'll return to the adventures
of Ishmael the immortal in next week's installment featuring Feint - Jeff]