In this the second post on Ashes Rise of the Phoenixborn and the first of my posts looking at the content of the stunning box in more detail, we start off looking at the Phoenixborn themself.
In the base game, for that is what this gorgeous box is, we get six Phoenixborn. Additionally if you got the game direct from Plaid Hat (not sure if it also made it to retail too) you got an additional promo Phoenixborn.
In the rule book for each of the base game Phoenixborn there is a suggested pre-built deck for people to get playing with straight away. For the promo Phoenixborn you will have to make use of the deck building guidelines in the rule book to build a deck.
Naturally the art on the cards we are about to look at is stunning. You will probably get fed up with me saying this. But it takes my breathe away. I hope Plaid Hat games does an art book at some point.
Anatomy of a Phoenixborn card
So before we look at the actual Phoenixborn themselves it's probably best that we look at a card and what information is given on each one.
a) Name of the Phoenixborn – do I need to explain this? No really isn't it obvious?
b) Battlefield Value – this value determines the how many units a Phoenixborn can have on the battlefield at one time. In the example above that means Dimona can have a maximum of five units on her battlefield.
c) Ability – an effect that the Phoenixborn has on the game. It can be constant or needs to be activated.
d) Flavour text – oh come on I don't need to explain this.
e) Activation cost – the cost to activate the Phoenixborns ability.
f) Spellboard Value – similar in effect to the Battlefield value, the Spellboard determines the number of active spells you can have in your Spellboard. So in the example above Dimona can have a maximum of five spells in her Spellboard.
g) Life Value – nor should I have to explain this. If this reaches zero guess what? You're dead.
Ok so that is the anatomy of a Phoenixborn card. Shall we meet the Phoenixborn?
Aradel Summergaard – The Mist Guardian
Stat wise Aradel can have the largest battlefield of all the current crop of Phoenixborn. Aradel is one of the weaker life values of the Phoenixborn, so she needs to be a bit more careful and make use of that superior numbers on the battlefield to protect her.
Her Spellboard is on par with the majority of the Phoenixborn. But it's her ability that excites. Don't underestimate being able to do direct damage. This could knock out a potential defending unit before you swing your attack, or deliver that killing blow to the opposing Phoenixborn.
You can read the Plaid Hat look at Aradel and her pre-built deck HERE
Jessa Na Ni – The Bloodwoods Queen
Jessa has an ok Life Value, kind of in the middle. She also has the average sized Spellboard and Battlefield. So even though her Life Value is better than Aradel, Jessa still needs to be protective of that Life. Based on her stats I would describe Jessa as average.
Now Jessa's ability is interesting because as long as you have the dice you are able to chip away at your opponents Life Value even when it's not your turn.
You can read the Plaid Hat look at Jessa and her pre-built deck HERE
Noah Redmoon – The Shadows of Viros
Noah is interesting. His Battlefield and Life Value are better than average, but his Spellboard Value is below average. So while he can take a little more damage, he has to think carefully about which spells he is keeping out.
Now I like it when I can mess up my opponents plans, and I like this ability precisely because of that. Interfering with your opponents plans like switching off a spell when they are counting on it for their turn could be enough to throw them off and give you that edge you need for the win.
You can read the Plaid Hat look at Noah and his pre-built deck HERE
Saria Guideman – The Cloudsea Siren
Saria has an above average Life Value, and average Battlefield and Spellboard values. These stats for me make Saria a nice all rounder.
Now you have seen my tactic for my Noise deck Windy, which is milling. I can't see why you wouldn't force a card from the opponents draw deck into the discard pile. It denies them valuable cards that could screw up their strategy, and it means them are getting through their thirty card deck quicker and to that point where having no cards to draw will hurt them. I can't see a downside at the moment because I can't see anything in the rule book limiting the maximum hand size. If you find anything out that gives a maximum hand size then I may have to re-evaluate how powerful this ability is. At the moment I love this ability.
You can read the Plaid Hat look at Saria and her pre-built deck HERE
Coal Roarkwin – The Iron Men
Good grief Coal has the lowest Life Value going of all the Phoenixborn. Luckily he has above average Battlefield and Spellboard values, because he is going to need them to protect his precious Life Value.
Coals ability is interesting. To use it you discard a card and use a side action. So as long as you have the cards you are still able to inflict damage. You aren't reliant on having the dice available. I'm not sure how Coal would fair going up against Saria and her ability, especially if they were trying to use it a lot.
You can read the Plaid Hat look at Coal and his pre-built deck HERE
Maeoni Viper – The Snakes in Silver
Ok I love this card theme wise. The art and name are so perfect. Snakes and a Cleopatra type character, brilliant.
Maeoni has the highest Life Value of all the Phoenixborn, an average Spellboard and the weakest Battlefield Value.
Her ability is nice and allows a nice boost to one units attack when you most need it.
You can read the Plaid Hat look at Maeoni and her pre-built deck HERE
Promo Phoenixborn – Dimona Odinstar
Dimona is another card I love because the art matches the name.
Dimona has an above average Spellboard and Battlefield, but not a great Life Value.
Her ability is a nice one. Being able to remove an exhaustion token is massive. It means you could attack more than once a turn with a unit. Or if a second exhaustion token has been placed on a unit, you could remove the second token meaning you can get that back the next round instead of losing it for another round. That's massive in my book.
So I hope you enjoyed this look at the games Phoenixborn. These really are beautiful cards. I'm undecided which one is right for me at the moment.