"Combat automaton which became self-aware. Ancient technology allows manipulation of Orbs."
The Defect is a playable character added to the beta build in Weekly Patch 22: Testing the third Character. It is an ancient automaton related to the Orb Walker that attacks foes with a high-tech arsenal, array of Powers, and elemental evocations.
The Defect has a unique mechanic, the Orbs. Using cards and Relics, The Defect Channels these elemental spheres into a set of Orb slots, activating their passive effects each turn or Evoking them for a one-time burst.
The Defect begins with three Orb slots and considers the rightmost Orb to be the active Orb. Channeling an Orb inserts it into the leftmost slot. If every slot is full, each Orb will be shifted one slot to the right, popping the active Orb out of its slot and Evoking it. If The Defect loses every Orb slot, it can't channel Orbs at all!
At the end of The Defect's turn, it uses the passive effect of each Channeled Orb, left to right. While these effects are initially weak, The Defect can increase Focus and channel additional copies to sharply increase their potency.
Evoking an Orb shatters it and unleashes a high-powered effect. Unlike the passive effects that activate at a preset time, Evoking an Orb activates instantly. Orbs can be Evoked by Channeling too many Orbs or by cards that specify Evoking them. After Evoking an Orb, each orb to its left shifts to fill its slot.
Focus is a stat unique to The Defect that affects Orbs the same way Strength affects Attacks and Dexterity affects Block. Increasing Focus increases the magnitude of both the passive and Evoke effects of each Orb, and decreasing Focus reduces them. It is possible to reduce an Orb's effect to 0 by decreasing Focus - the Orb will still activate, but will have no effect.
Trying to Channel an Orb when you have no more Orb Slots open will result in the rightmost Orb being evoked to make room for the new orb.
The Defect can currently Channel four types of Orbs - Lightning, Frost, Dark, and Plasma. The X in each description refers to The Defect's Focus.
The starting limit for Channeled Orbs is 3, but it can be increased through various means - Runic Capacitor, Inserter and Capacitor will add more slots for Orbs, up to a maximum of 10. Notably, Consume decreases slots - useful for Evoking often.
Other classes have a hidden starting limit of Channeled Orbs of 1. They will display Orb slots if they have an Orb-related card in their deck.
Passive: Deal 3 + X Damage to a random enemy.
Evoke: Deal 8 + X Damage to a random enemy.
Lightning Orbs are straightforward damage-dealers that chip away at enemies' Health each turn and Evoke a big damage burst. Lightning Orbs' passives activate at the end of the player's turn, before the enemy's Block has worn off. This means it can't bypass Block, but it can push through some sneaky finishing damage if sufficiently worn down beforehand.
The random nature of these Orbs spreads the pain around, so reducing enemy numbers with Attack cards to focus the Lightning damage onto the most dangerous enemy is an ideal strategy. Alternatively, Electrodynamics will apply Lightning damage to all foes, allowing you to take on groups of foes effectively.
When building a Lightning deck, plan whether the Orbs' passive or their Evoke will deal the bulk of your damage. Increase your Focus and add more Orb slots to maximize the passive damage, or reduce Orb slots and add more Channel effects to Evoke more often. Trying to do both can make the deck inconsistent and unable to handle high-health enemies.
The damage dealt by Lightning is not affected by any effects except Focus, Intangible and Lock-On. It's not reduced by Weak, isn't increased by Vulnerable, ignores Strength and Thorns, and doesn't count as Attack damage for effects like Angry.
Passive: Gain 2 + X Block.
Evoke: Gain 5 + X Block.
Frost Orbs are defensive tools that provide a small but relevant defense each turn and Evoke to counter stronger blows. Frost Orbs' passives activate at the end of the player's turn, but after effects like Orichalcum have triggered.
At the beginning of combat, Frost Orbs are the weakest of the bunch, the Block too minor to counter even feeble attacks. However, once The Defect has Channeled a few copies and boosted Focus, they form a line of defense that few enemies can penetrate, and regenerate it turn after turn.
When building a Frost deck, the challenge is surviving the early game until your Frost Orbs can fully defend you. One option is to bolster them with Skills that grant Block, accepting that those Skills will become useless once your Frost defenses are prepared. Another option is to simply tank the early-game damage and recover with Self Repair.
The Block granted by Frost isn't affected by Dexterity or Frail, which makes it particularly strong against enemies that use such effects to proactively reduce Block. The repeatable card-free Block is also relevant against Gremlin Nob and Chosen.
Passive: Add 6 + X Damage (= Y) to this Orb's Evoke.
Evoke: Deal Y Damage to the enemy with the lowest Health.
Dark Orbs are beatsticks that trade Lightning's reliable damage for a bigger Evoke effect. The Dark Orb's passive has no effect on combat at all, and only serves to stockpile damage into the Evoke ability. Dark Orbs' passives activate at the end of the player's turn.
Dark Orbs are the most challenging Orb to build around. The Defect must Channel the Orb early, survive while it charges, and Evoke it at the appropriate time. The Dark Orb gains less from Focus than other Orbs - it's generally smarter to simply charge it for a few more turns. However, the payoff is massive damage that's more predictable than that of a Lightning Orb.
The key to mastering the Dark Orb is ensuring it can be Evoked at the right time, onto the right enemy. Dark Orb decks demand a high number of Evoke cards, and benefit the most from multi-Evoke cards like Multi-Cast that can multiply the hard-won damage. If evoked with Recursion, the channeled Dark Orb will retain the stockpiled damage. Use reliable Attacks like Melter to groom enemies' HP so the Evoked damage can land on a key target. Try to Evoke Cracked Core's Lightning Orb as soon as possible, so the Dark Orb is ready for action.
A key decision in Dark deck construction is how many Orb slots to maintain. Increasing the count allows the player to charge more Dark Orbs at once, but reducing it makes it easier for Channel effects to Evoke them. In either case, minimize the number of Channel effects in the deck to avoid prematurely Evoking Orbs.
Like Lightning Orbs, Dark Orbs' damage is affected only by Focus, Intangible and Lock-On.
Passive: Gain 1 Energy.
Evoke: Gain 2 Energy.
Plasma Orbs grant Energy. This simple effect powers greedy decks loaded with impractically-costed, absurdly powerful cards and fuels long chains of huge plays. Unlike other Orbs, Plasma Orbs are unaffected by Focus, and their passive effects trigger at the beginning of The Defect's turn.
A single Plasma Orb is a significant boon to The Defect, like a Velvet Choker with no downside. The key is making the most of the extra Energy without Evoking the Orb and losing the passive. Alternately, the Orb can be Evoked at the right time to access the 2 Energy and fuel a huge turn.
When The Defect can Channel multiple Plasma Orbs, the challenge is simply spending all the Energy. This is the time to jam all the Meteor Strikes, Sunders, Echo Forms, and other flashy bombs that are too pricey for more sensible decks. There's nothing more satisfying than sinking a dozen Energy into a massive game-ending Tempest or Multi-Cast.
Creative AI, Hello World, and other repeatable card-draw and card-generation effects are great ways to dump excess Energy, and Unceasing Top becomes hilariously overpowered. Draw effects in general are quite good with Plasma Orbs, especially if the deck is likely to Evoke them.
The Defect's game plan almost always involves implementing a long-term plan each battle. By developing Orbs, Powers, and cards with escalating effects, The Defect sets up an insurmountable late-game position and then destroys its enemies. This is a radically different style from The Silent and The Ironclad, which tend to apply bursts of damage to take enemies out opportunistically.
As a consequence, The Defect struggles to win with a deck full of "good stuff". While it does have access to some individually strong cards, they don't present the sheer power that The Ironclad and The Silent enjoy.
The Defect also has some chance-based RNG effects, like Lightning Orbs and Creative AI. These can salvage a weak deck by generating stronger cards, but clog up synergistic builds.
The class' strongly synergistic cards encourage some powerful and well-supported archetypes. Identifying and focusing on one is a key aspect of Defect strategy.
Zero Cost Edit
The Defect has a high number of strong 0-cost cards, as well as unique supporting cards like Scrape and All For One and efficient card-draw Skills. Drown an enemy under FTL's,Streamlines, and Beam Cells, then play All For One and do it again. It's sort of like The Silent's Shiv builds, but way more back-loaded and visually impressive.
A subset of the zero-cost archetype, the Claw deck simply jams as many copies of the eponymous card as possible, adds some draw effects, and removes everything else. With multiple copies of Claw and a shuffle every few turns, the damage quickly spirals out of control. Unlike Anger the damage of the claw actually scales as it is being used and can multiply in damage better if Echo Form is used beforehand - the only downside is that there are very limited chances to earn the latter card, which is Rare.
Lightning DoT Edit
The Lightning Orb damage-over-time build tries to Channel many Lightning Orbs, boost Focus, and hold the fort with Block-granting Skills while the Lightning Orbs' passive wears down the opponents. Loop speeds up the process, and Fission can Evoke the accumulated Orbs to finish off the weakened enemies. Biased Cognition's extreme Focus gain takes this build to the next level.
Lightning Evoke Edit
This build tries to Evoke as many Lightning Orbs as possible, beating enemies down eight damage at a time. Unlike other Orb builds, smaller is better - one Orb slot is optimal to facilitate Evoking. Thunder Strike, Tempest, and Lock-On are this deck's premier finishers, dumping huge volumes of damage onto the enemy.
Frost Turtle Edit
The Frost deck Channels as many of the eponymous Orbs as possible to into an unbreakable wall of free Block. Once the shields are up, The Defect can devote every Energy to damage. This archetype is supported by Blizzard and Glacier, and relies heavily on Focus and Orb slot buffs. Barrage excels in this slot-oriented deck.
The Defect can make the most of the tricky Dark Orb by defending for a few turns while it charges, then using Multi-Cast, Dualcast, or Recursion to Evoke it multiple times. This archetype isn't as well-supported as the others, but the satisfaction of Evoking a 54-damage Dark Orb three times (or more!) makes it worthwhile.
The Defect has better access to Energy sources than other classes, and there's no better way to leverage them than a Meteor Strike and TURBO, and stockpile with Charge Battery. Dump your Energy into expensive bombs like Meteor Strike, Sunder and Tempest, draw cards with Skim and fling them at enemies, or make a good old-fashioned Unceasing Top wombo-combo. When you have 7 Energy, anything is possible.
Powers Matter Edit
The Ironclad likes Attacks, The Silent loves Skills, and The Defect completes the cycle with its affinity for Powers. Grab some Force Fields, drop an Amplify or Echo Form, stack up some powerful effects, and bury the opposition under your cumulative advantage. The Bird-Faced Urn is the perfect Relic to recover life lost while setting up.
The Powers deck's win condition depends on the particular Powers you acquire. Most builds will stack up Orbs, but some use Attacks and others simply lean on Creative AI and let the Powers do the work. The Mummified Hand can become really useful with a power deck.
RNGesus, Take the Wheel! Edit
This aggressive archetype deploys efficient cards with debilitating drawbacks, and attempts to end the battle before the consequences arrive. TURBO and Steam Barrier provide cheap resources, and Hyperbeam or Biased Cognition bring big damage, and each incurs a significant long-term cost. If The Defect can slam the door before the Statuses overwhelm it, the player enjoys a quick, decisive victory that doesn't give enemies much time to deal damage.
This deck centres around the three major cards of Barrage, Capacitor and Defragment if you want to get more value off of your orbs. The point of this deck is to acquire as many orbs as possible using cards such as Glacier and Chaos and then unloading a ton of damage using Barrage. Other cards that are useful are Trip or Beam Cell, to do maximum damage with Barrage and also Hologram or Seek, to find Barrage more consistently.
The Defect itself is unlocked by completing a run with The Silent.
|Unlock Number||Prizes Unlocked|
|1st||Rebound, Equilibrium, Echo Form|
|2nd||TURBO, Sunder, Meteor Strike|
|3rd||Hyperbeam, Recycle, Core Surge|
|4th||Gold-Plated Cables, Turnip, Runic Capacitor|
|5th||Data Disk, Symbiotic Virus, Emotion Chip|