The only Envy ally released in Artificial Human, Grand Dissembler is also the most powerful Envy ally in terms of raw attributes. His ability, which can be played without cost, allows you to take a discarded card and place it on the bottom of your deck. However, like the Envy: Homunculus ally, this card is very expensive.
This Envy is designed strictly for smashing things in both wits and strength late in the game. At eleven wits and an eleven cost, he can be used to play any wits event or to carry just about any attachment free from equivalent exchange. Also, if you have gotten late enough in the game to actually recruit Envy, your deck might be thin enough to make milling your discard pile back in worth you while.
To get the maximum possible chance of getting back the cards you are pulling from your discard pile, events like Woohoo! or others that shuffle your deck are very helpful. Furthermore, cards like Very Sick or Run, You Coward that increase in power as your ally’s wits increase play well off of Envy, as most other characters will fall under his wits total. Finally, as a Fifth Laboratory character, he can benefit from cards like Surveillance Camera.
Grand Dissembler is very good at beating pretty much everything in wits, and taking on many heavy strength hitters. His ability to play all of the wits events is also a big plus. While his ability is not amazing, as noted earlier, odds favor he will be coming into play at the precise time a deck light on cards is a major concern.
This card’s biggest problem is the same as Envy: Homunculus in that it is simply too expensive to recruit for normal gameplay. While Homunculus has at least a few stage three leaders that could recruit him, Grand Dissembler can only be recruited by a stage four. Without luck and a lot of Policemen, most games will never get that far, leaving Envy to take up space that could be taken by allies that will help you end the game before you get to stage four. Furthermore, his ability is not that helpful by taking cards out of your discard pile where cards like Raise the Dead, Spoils of War, or Gluttony: Big Fists could put them back into play, and instead hiding them in your deck. Simple Transmutation does the same thing, but also gives an alchemy boost, and Taboo Circles can give any character the same ability before the end of the game.
This card was released as a rare ally and a chase foil in Artificial Human.
Artwork and aesthetics:
Basque Grand was one of my least favorite characters from the first anime, so putting Envy in that form on the card has done it few favors in my mind.
Overall, I give this card a 2 out of 10. The only thing that saves it from a one rating is its incredible power, but the sheer unlikelihood that it will ever be recruited makes it worthless to most decks. Unlike the also expensive Envy: Homunculus, it does not even have a very good ability for the cost, and can be duplicated by several fairly common cards. Die-hard Basque Grand fans or collectors might have interest in this card, but players should not be distracted by the shiny attributes into thinking it is a viable deck option.