Thursday, October 22, 2020

Character Guide: Bloody Mary

Character Name: Bloody Mary.

Inspired by: Mary Tudor, who took the British throne in 1553, reigning as first queen regnant of England and Ireland. Seeking to return England to the Catholic Church, she persecuted hundreds of Protestants and earned the name "Bloody Mary." The term is now mostly known for the alcoholic drink.

Life Points: 4.

Ability Type: Offensive.

Ability: "Each time your BANG! card is cancelled, draw 1 card from the deck."

Activation: Playing a BANG! card against another player during Bloody Mary's turn.

Cards enhanced by Bloody Mary's ability: BANG!, Bottle, Bandolier, guns (especially Lemat -- converts card in hand to BANG! -- Volcanic, Buntline Special, Shotgun, and Thunderer), Scope, Tornado, Bell Tower, Ace Up the Sleeve, Gun Belt, Gold Pan, Pickaxe

Cards weakened by Bloody Mary's ability: Duel, Aim, Big Fifty

Cards less effective when played against Bloody Mary: Any cards cancelling the BANG! (Missed! family - Missed!, Dodge, Evade, Sombrero, Cappello, Iron Plate, Bible, Duck), Barrel, Horseshoe, Crate, General Store

Cards more effective when played against Bloody Mary: Indians!, Arrow, Duel, Bandidos, Panic!, Cat Balou, Whip, Poker, Lock Pick, Squaw, Saved! in response to her BANG!, Jail, Boots, Beer, Rucksack, Calumet

Ideal Roles: Deputy, Outlaw, Renegade.

Characters Bloody Mary counters:

Calamity Janet (BANG! she plays as Missed! enable Bloody Mary to draw cards), Elen Fuente (cards she discards to play Missed! enable Bloody Mary to draw cards), Jourdonnais (draws cards when his ability cancels her BANG!), Lucky Duke (draws cards when a lucky "draw!" cancels her BANG!), Mick Defender (no benefits defending against BANG! with his ability), Sean Mallory (he may store up defensive cards, but they will not hold her back as much), Chuck Wengam (he may burn health to gain cards, but the canceling cards he plays will be less effective), Pixie Pete (He may draw 3 cards, but she'll be able to deplete his LP's)

Characters who counter Bloody Mary well:

"BANG!/Distance Depleters": Pat Brennan (pull her gun cards to limit her distance and ability to apply her BANG!), Big Spencer (he can take the hits), Jesse Jones (pulling cards from her hand can deplete her BANG!), Flint Westwood (trade a non-BANG! to get 2 of her cards, likely grabbing her BANG!).

"Alt-Defenders" -- Paul Regret (use distance as a defense versus Missed! cards), Bart Cassidy (more likely to just take a hit to draw a card), El Gringo (he can take the hit and then draw a card from her hand), Sid Ketchum (use discards to drink Beer instead of evading her BANG!), Tequila Joe/Lemonade Jim (use Beer as defense versus cancelling her BANG!), Molly Stark (draws a card along with Bloody Mary when she cancels a BANG! out of turn), Teren Kill (his last life point doesn't need as much protection), Julie Cutter (50% chance to make Bloody Mary target of a BANG! when she loses an LP), Ms. Abigail (she ignores the effects of royal BANG!, which is not the same as cancelling them), Madam Yto (she draws cards when Beer is played), Don Bell (more turns = more chance to gain what he needs, Beer or otherwise), Apache Kid (diamond BANG! have no effect)

"Best Defense is a Strong Offense": Slab the Killer, Willy the Kid, Greygory Deck, Lee Van Kliff

2-player value: Good. Keeping the cards coming when your opponent cancels your BANG! helps you maintain your position.

General Strategy: Bloody Mary is one of the 3 gals included in Armed and Dangerous which has universal value outside of the expansion. Her ability is "old school," sliding nicely in with the base game characters and any group of expansions you play with. It feeds her cards when her BANG! or cancelled, which means you really want to use your BANG! and get a gun with proper range so you can reach your intended target with those BANG!. You can use them more freely, as when they're cancelled you'll get to draw another card. You're less prone to Indians! than Slab.

You're still subject to the one BANG! draw limit so finding cards (Volcanic, Bandolier) that extend that BANG! limit, or that stack well with her ability (Buntline Special, Thunderer) are a great pick. Try to keep a Panic! handy as your opponents will try to control you by removing your gun cards and Scope. Use Bell Tower to close the gap if you're given the chance. Tornado and General Store can also be your friend for acquiring the right cards (guns or BANG!). Be careful when you draw a Duel card yourself; unless you can't reach the target you wish and you have lots of BANG!, they are so useful to keep that I wouldn't expend your BANG! in a Duel just to take your chances.

Your real trick will be trying to get folks to cancel your BANG! and not your non-BANG! attacks (Punch!, Tomahawk, Aim, Gatling, Quick Shot, Fanning, Flint Lock) so you still get a bonus. Don't draw attention to your green attacks in play in front of you, but the smart player will use that to determine when they should cancel a card. Of course, you could fake them out so they take the hit from your BANG! and then you don't play a secondary attack.

Playing against Bloody Mary: Since Bloody Mary keeps her cards replenished when you cancel her BANG!, your best bet is to keep her in your range, while keeping yourself out of hers. A trusty Mustang or Hideout should do the job; just try to keep Bloody Mary from getting/keeping a gun or scope (use those steal and discard cards, and pay attention when the General Store is played). She's pretty vicious with a Volcanic or Buntline Special.

If Bloody Mary has you in range and shoots at you, judge carefully when to play cards that would cancel an attack. Since her ability only applies to BANG! cards, you'll have no penalty for cancelling a green card (which you'll be able to see if she has in play), or other brown attack card (i.e. Gatling). You might consider taking the hit from a BANG! to cancel her attack on another card and not give her an extra card. Successful "draws!" from Barrels do enable Bloody Mary, but at least they're entirely effective in cancelling her shot (say, versus Slab the Killer). Saved! is a great card to play against one of the targets of her BANG!. While you'll take the hit, you'll get the benefit of drawing 2 cards, the target won't take the hit and the BANG! isn't cancelled so she doesn't get anything out of it. Calumet is an amazing defense, as the diamond BANG! she plays against you won't be cancelled, but rather will have no effect on you. She'll likely try to discard/buy this away from you.

To keep Bloody Mary less prone to attacking you (or your ally), try using BANG!-depleters to remove fire power from his hand. Duels, Indians!, Arrow and Bandidos are especially useful. If she isn't careful with her BANG!, you can do some great damage against her this way. While Jail is always useful to play against an opponent, it is more useful to use against Bloody Mary since her ability is only activated during her turn.


  1. Do you have an Italian friend who can make the translation? Or are you good at Italian? I'm recently trying to make my cards just like the official cards and I have no idea to do Italian translation

  2. I don't know Italian, nor have an Italian-speaking friend to guide you there. I am okay with Spanish, but that won't help you. Personally, I think BANG! being bilingual is not great. It's led to many confusing abilities and need to consult FAQ's because they tried to keep the language too tight on their cards. IMHO, it was a bad decision to just save on printing costs.