Hello again, Ashes players! Today is the final preview from the Demons of Darmas Expansion Deck! We’ve seen plenty of exciting cards ranging from werewolf and vampire allies to dark transformation spells, and today is no exception; we will be showing of some powerful new additions to ceremonial magic. But first, let’s see what conjuration Harold will be summoning to battle.
SUMMON VAMPIRE BAT SWARM
This summon spell is one of the few books that uses two different classes of magic to summon a conjuration. Ceremonial magic isn’t best known for its ability to summon powerful conjurations, but with the addition of Sympathy magic, we have quite a powerful unit! The Vampire Bat Swarm poses a respectable offensive threat of 2 attack, with the added ability to Swarm the opponent’s battlefield! When your Bat Swarm would deal damage to a Phoenixborn, you can opt to have your Bat Swarm deal 1 damage to up to 2 target units. This can be great for cleaning up a board of exhausted units that have already been damaged in battle. Additionally, the Vampire Bat Swarm can be troublesome to remove with damage effects, as their bulky 3 life is complimented very well by the Relentless ability. This ability reduces all damage the receive to just 1 damage, no matter how large the source damage was! While the Vampire Bat Swarm has some unique and powerful offensive and defensive capabilities, they won’t be around forever. This unit has Fleeting which means it will be discarded at the end of the round. Ceremonial players will find it advantageous to use Blood Chains or Brennen’s Spirit Burn ability to sacrifice their Vampire Bat Swarm since it is going away anyways!
Next up is the reaction spell, Adrenaline Rush! This is a very affordable spell at only 1 Ceremonial class, as well as being easy to play by having a proactive trigger condition. When you would declare attackers, Adrenaline Rush deals 2 damage to a unit you control to remove an exhaustion token from them, allowing them to potentially join the battle at a moment’s notice! Not many exhausted units are able to survive 2 damage, but those that can are sure to make an impact. The Vampire Bat Swarm seen today, as well as last week’s Celestial Knight, both have abilities to reduce the damage they receive, making them prime targets for Adrenaline Rush. Do note that in order to declare attackers in the first place, you must have at least one unexhausted unit in play. Once you do, you are free to use Adrenaline Rush and can then choose from any of your unexhausted units to be declared as attackers.
Our last card from Harold’s deck is certain to be one of the most impactful. Dark Reaping is an incredible Ceremonial spell that fulfills many essential needs of any great Ashes deck. Dark Reaping requires you to destroy a unit you control and pay 2 Ceremonial class in order to re-roll 4 dice in your exhausted pool and return them to your active pool! A net gain of 2 dice is incredible value and is well worth the cost of sacrificing a unit. Many other Ceremonial cards trigger off of a unit being destroyed like Chant of Revenge and Summon Sleeping Widows. Dark Reaping can provide a proactive way to initiate these deadly effects, all while giving your the dice to use them! Phoenixborn with smaller battlefields can also appreciate Dark Reaping as a way to clear up some battlefield space, then using their 4 new dice to refill the battlefield with more units! All in all, this spell is sure to be a key part of using Ceremonial magic.
That’s a wrap for the Demons of Darmas previews! I hope you enjoy everything you’ve seen in the deck. We have a great new Phoenixborn in Harold coming to the game, as well as many powerful and inspiring additions to Ceremonial and Sympathy magic in this expansion. Be sure to check back later this week for the thrilling conclusion of Sembali’s deck!
Until next time,