It has been a while since I last posted about my Customizable Card Game Elemental Clash and much has happened in the meantime.
I have been investing considerable thought, effort and, last but not least, money in the first full expansion to the EC Master Set…
…and due to some unfortunate events will not be able to release it before this Christmas I am afraid. So much for the bad news.
The good news however is that a 1st Quarter of 2014 release is highly likely and is indeed something I am planning on realizing and something I deem realistic. I have a good deal of the artwork either finished or already paid for and this is in fact all it boils down to – money, or rather lack thereof. So I ask for your understanding and patience. And to amend things to some degree I will be releasing regular card previews from the upcoming expansion set on this blog.
Today I would like to start it off by showcasing an exciting card preview in the form of the first of 10 new Spellcasters which will be included in Legendary Legacy.
Behold, mortals, and tremeble in fear!
So Abragath, the Bane of the Living, is the first of the 10 new Spellcasters which will come with the Legendary Legacy expansion and which I am going to showcase here over the course of the next weeks and months. As the 10 “old” Spellcasters, my loyal and trusted artist Enggar Adirasa will be illustrating all 10, so Abragath is his work as well – based on a concept drawing by myself.
So let us look at what Abragath actually does (If you are not familiar with Elemental Clash at all please check out the game rules, otherwise the rest of this article won’t make any sense to you!):
Abragath gives us a starting hand of 8 cards, which is nice as the standard hand size would be 7 cards, lets us draw 1 card each turn, which is normal and allows us to have a Spellbook (deck) of 40 cards which is the standard deck size as well. Not too exciting so far. Now Abragath’s Static and Flip Abilities is where things get messy, or awesome, depending on the perspective you are looking at it:
While Abragath is face-up on the table, all Creatures cost +1 to summon, meaning you have to spend one more Energy to summon a Creature. Now when you flip the Bane of the Living, shutting down his Static Ability he forces all your opponents to destroy a Creature they control.
So basically, staying true to his title, Abragath punishes players for running or rather trying to summon Creatures. He is THE Spellcaster to run in an almost creatureless or totally creatureless deck and in fact that is the kind of deck I had in mind when designing this Spellcaster. I may have mentioned it before but I always had a soft spot for creatureless builds ever since I started playing Magic: the Gathering, running all kinds of such decks from “Landstill” to Mono-Black Control. With Abragath, I wanted to give the small but dedicated and enthusiastic followership of Elemental Clash a Spellcaster that rewards playing (almost) creatureless decks and in turn punishes players who rely on Creatures only as their winning strategy. I think that most decks I have seen or built myself rely heavily on Creatures so I think offering an Anti-Creature Spellcaster would be worthwile.
As always when I come up with new cards, and all the more if the new card is a Spellcaster, I am thinking of all kinds of decks to build around them. Let me share a decklist I came up with for Abragath, Bane of the Living and provide some strategic thoughts on the same. (The cards in the decklist are from the Elemental Clash Master Set and the upcoming Legendary Legacy Expansion.)
Abragath Control (Beware ye Mortals!):
Abragath, Bane of the Living (40 cards)
3 x Venus Wurm
1 x Finborg, Sire of the Seven Seas
3 x Earth Ritual
3 x Bloody Tribute
3 x Royal Revival
3 x Royal Shattering
3 x Forbid
3 x Shattering Wave
3 x Excavate
2 x Tsunami
3 x Islandstone
3 x Corroding Stone
4 x Venus-Stone
3 x Mercury-Stone
My Thoughts on the Deck:
The deck above is one road you could take using Abragath, Bane of the Living, by adopting an almost creatureless approach (I am running the “Unique” Finborg and tripple Venus Wurm as “killers” and the latter as recursal as well) with lots of ways to control the what the opponent may do and what you don’t want them to do. Basically you’d not flip Abragath for as long as possible, making the most of his Static Ability whilst using the Flip Ability kinda like a last resort. When you combine the +1 cost of summoning Creatures with lots of Element-Stone control in the form of the classic Shattering Wave and the new Royal Shattering as well as with “countermagic” in the form of Forbid and cheap Creature removal like Bloody Tribute (which has “Boon” to top it off) your opponent will be having a hard time getting any Creature into play, let alone keeping it long enough to attack you with.
The two different Creatures this deck is running are well worth the cost of 3 + 1 as Venus Wurm is a 3 ATK and 4 DEF Creature which lets you return cards from your Archive to Spellbook equal to its DEF-value when it dies and Finborg, Sire of the Seven Seas is a 4/4 with Immunity: Fire that lets you draw 3 cards when played from hand. You can also just reanimate Finborg via Royal Revival if he did end up in your Archive.
Together with three copies of Royal Revival, which lets you draw a card OR put any Unique Creature from ANY Archive in your DEF-Zone under your control, the deck is running three copies of Royal Shattering. Both cards are “Unique hosers” punishing players for running too many cards with the “Unique” keywords. With the advent of the overpowered (on purpose) “Unique” cards in Legendary Legacy, I came up with a cycle of cheap Spells which punish your opponent for having Unique cards in play or in their Archive, to counterbalanced the raw power of the “Uniques” to some extent. Royal Shattering is useful in and off itself as you get to return any 1 Element-Stone to its owner’s hand and then if that player owns a card with “Unique”, you get to return an additional Stone to their hand. Team this up with the classic Shattering Wave, which puts any Element-Stone in play on top of their owner’s Spellbook and you are going to give your opponent a hell of a time trying to summon any Creature with the penalty of +1 Creature cost imposed by Abragath. Oh and not to forget Corroding Stone which you can destroy to destroy any 1 Non-Basic Element-Stone. You’d want to do that a lot!
Bloody Tribute and Forbid are great ways to cheaply and conveninently get rid of an opponent Creature if your opponent manages to summon any. Tribute is a Normal Spell with the popular “Boon” ability that forces each player to destroy one of their own Creatures. Since you won’t have any Creatures most of the time, this won’t harm you as much as it will harm your opponent and even if you have a Venus Wurm out, you will get to restock your deck with a couple of cards from your Archive when he dies to Bloody Tribute! As for Forbid, it just neutralizes any Spell or Creature at the moment it is cast / summoned which is just generally useful and powerful in any “Control” deck.
Tsunami is in there twice so you can stop an ambush from an army of cheap Creatures short in its track.
Excavate and Earth Ritual are in there for general usefulness. Use Excavate to get back a slain Wurm or any other card you’ll need the most to play it again. Earth Ritual can be very useful to outlast an opponent, which is important in a deck that does not rely mainly on destroying your opponent through (combat damage).
Well these are my thoughts on my approach on a deck making the best off Abragath, Bane of the Living. As I remarked initially, this is just one possible way to do this and I could imagine lots of other builds that would work well with the demonic Spellcaster. A pure-Fire or Fire/Water Spellbook with lots of or exclusively direct damage Spells (maybe teamed up with Water’s ability to deny resources – Element-Stones that is) could work as well.
I hope you enjoyed this for myself quite exciting, new Spellcaster preview. More articles on the upcoming Legendary Legacy Expansion will follow, including new Spellcasters. I will show them to you as soon as I get the art. I will get the art as soon as I can afford it. Sadly, it all comes down to money in the end.
Thank you for reading and stay tuned for more!