CnC (Casual and Competitive) – Bravo

Bravo, Showstopper
(Bravo, Showstopper | Art by Alexander Mokhov)

Welcome back to CnC! Through this series, we’ll break down just what each hero brings to the table, from abilities, to playable cards and equipment, and interactions with other heroes. Looking at Blitz, CC, and UPF, we’ll see which heroes are winners, playable, fun, or need more support.

As one of the founding heroes of Flesh and Blood, this Guardian has a pretty big fan club, even without being the Star of the Show. Unlike the rest of the OG group, Bravo is still being massively played to this day and even getting very high standings at various tournaments. Even though more Guardians came after him, some more popular than others, many players still chose to play the fan favorite Showstopper. But why? Is he just that fun to play or is there something more to Bravo? Let’s take a look.

Note: for the purpose of this article, I will not be talking about Bravo, Star of the Show.

What Does He Do?

Young Bravo has four intellect and 20 life, while adult Bravo (Bravo, Showstopper) has 40 life. He’s a Guardian hero, which means he can play generic and Guardian cards. His effect is a two-cost action that makes your attack action cards with cost three or greater gain dominate. This has go again and the effect lasts till the end of your turn.

Weapon and Equipment

“Hammer for four.” Sound familiar? Bravo uses hammers and he has a few to choose from. His original hammer is the famed Anothos. For three resources, you may attack with Anothos as an once per turn action. It deals four physical damage (hence the famous “hammer for four”). However, if you have two or more cards in your pitch zone with cost three or greater, Anothos gains an aditional two physical damage. Other hammers include Titan’s Fist and Sledge of Anvilheim, but you’ll most often want to play the Anothos Bravo.

Titan’s Fist is a baby version of Anothos. With a base three damage, this one has a potential of getting a +1 for just one card with cost three or greater in your pitch zone. So it’s a six vs. four damage difference for a two vs. one card in pitch. On the other hand, Sledge lets you get that six damage without any additional costs. However, you still have to pay resources to swing and a four resource action with no go again might not seem so appealing to most players.

As far as equipment goes the more block you have the better with this Guardian. That being said, Tectonic Plating as well as Crown of Providence are both good choices. Combine that with Crater Fist and Ironrot Legs and you’ve got yourself nine block with just your equipment. You can switch out Crown for Arcanite Skullcap if you want that extra one block and Arcane Barrier.

Cards That Are the Core

A few auras here, a Crush there, add in some reactions and the trusty hammer to finish. So let’s start with auras.

While there is a variety of auras to choose from with Bravo, you won’t be playing many of them. The one you might want in your deck is Blessing of Deliverance. Use this one wisely and only if you plan on playing the long game. As far as crushes go, this is where it gets interesting. Crippling Crush, Cranial Crush and Spinal Crush all have one thing in common – you want them dominated and you need three blues in your hand to do it. However when you dominate them, and if/when they crush, you will be smiling even if it’s the only crush that, well, crushed during the game.

Reactions are also an important part of your deck. From d. reacts like Fate Foreseen or Sink Below as well as pumps like the player’s pet – Pummel. As a true Guardian, you will want bigger blocks and Unmovable as well as Staunch Response are just what Bravo ordered. Don’t forget that you want a lot of blues in your deck, because when a card costs seven and you want to give it dominate, you gotta make sure lady luck will be on your side when you draw your hand.

Let’s take a look at the formats he can be played in and see if he’s playable, fun, a winner, or needs more support.


In this fast format, Bravo’s attacks are more dangerous. If you draw well, you can present lethal damage in basically the second turn. That doesn’t mean you’ll turn-one kill your opponent, but you do have a good chance of getting more damage through than the average hero. Dominated attacks are nice, but consider what dominate gives your opponent. If you aren’t presenting a high amount of damage that could be lethal if not blocked correctly, your opponents will just have that many cards to swing back at you. Leave the dominates for late game and don’t be scared of a poker game. Your opponent doesn’t know that’s a Sink Below in your arsenal when you’re swinging your hammer for four. Then again, you need to keep your life total up, but your equipment should provide you with enough cover to last though the match. Don’t underestimate crush effects as well as cards with simpler on-hit triggers such as Command and Conquer.


Now this is the stage where Bravo shines the most. Want to make it a long game? You got it! Want to just pummel (pun intended) your opponent for a faster win? You got it! Drew a bad hand and just want to send it to the bottom of your deck? Hammer is always welcome.

What’s the catch? Making sure you keep your tempo steady, no matter which path you choose. Being the big bulky Guardian that you are, you have some things that will really go to your advantage. The threat of dominate, the threat of crush, the threat of destroying, discarding or disabling a card (pitch to LSS for a new Guardian mechanic) will have your opponents following your every more, counting your graveyard and the rest of the cards in your deck every turn. Do with that power what you wish.


When playing Bravo, you have something even more important than the cards in your hand – your charm. You’re the Star of the Show, so act like one! There are more ways of winning UPF than just attacking; you are a Guardian after all. And if we look at some of the cards from Round the Table, protecting others so they can turn on your mutual opponents doesn’t sound like such a bad idea. If that doesn’t work out, make sure your deck is filled to the brim with d. reacts and Anothos your way to victory. You will run out of d. reacts eventually, but by the time that happens, you’ll likely be in the final stretch to victory.

It's Showtime!

It’s Showtime!

Overall Score: Winner / Fun to Play

Plain and simple, Bravo is here to win. You might need some time to learn how to pilot him properly, but once you do, even just one crush per game will give you that nice warm feeling around your heart.

Valera tried Magic in highschool then forgot about it. Some years later, she fell in love with broken FaB heroes (like Data Doll MKII) and tribal commander MTG decks. A shapeshifter, collector, traveller, writer... Who needs free time?