The first week of Monarch spoilers has entered the scene with a blast, and with more then 100 different cards hitting every corner of the internet this weekend, it can be quite the task to get your head around what’s going on. For those of you who may have understandably missed some of the landmark spoilers this season, lets recap some of the key points of information which have dropped down to us within this first week of spoiler season.
Talents may be the largest aspect of the game that will affect not only Monarch, but all future sets going forward. In essence, Talents will be specific region to region, and allow certain heroes to adopt various card pools unique to that talent if they come from the region associated with it.
For now, the talents of only two regions have been unveiled, Demonastery and Solana. The former will have the Talent of Shadow, whereas the latter will have the Talent of Light. In this case, a hypothetical Guardian from Solana would be a Light Guardian, having access to the card pool of Light cards, Guardian Cards and specific Light Guardian cards unique to that Talent and Class.
Keep in mind however, these talents will not be applicable to our Legacy heroes, and they’ll be staying just as they are now. For more information on this concept, check out this great article by LSS founder James White.
We’re going to be getting four new heroes in Monarch! Although this has been standard in most sets, these new heroes will be the first to adopt the talent system in Flesh and Blood and present a new era of the game going forward.
In this set, it seems two heroes will be from the Demonastery, and hence adopt the Shadow talent, and two will be from Solana, adopting the Light talent. Within the first week of spoiler season, we’ve been able to peek at three of these heroes, Levia, Shadowborn Abomination, Chane, Bound by Shadow and Ser Boltyn, Breaker of Dawn.
While it’s always really cool to look at heroes on their own, they won’t make much sense without their associated mechanics. Shadow heroes are heavily tied to the banished zone, with the unique ability of that Talent to play cards out of the banished zone. This allows you to access to a great number of cards on your turn and having almost your whole hand to pitch with instead.
This power comes at a cost through, with many Shadow cards having a mechanic named blood debt. Cards with blood debt will cost you one life at the end of your turn if they’re left in the banished zone. This is obviously very punishing, and as a result you have to find a way to play as many blood debt cards on your turn out of your graveyard using Chane, or simply turn off the effect with Levia.
Pay with blood, either your own or that of your opponent’s – this is the essence of Shadow. For all the powerful dark arts of the Demonastery though, the Soul of the heroes from Solana shine equally bright. Having a soul is one of the new mechanics/card slots that’s introduced to Light Heroes.
The Soul is simply a slot underneath your hero card where you’ll be placing cards. The number of cards underneath your hero will then represent the amount of cards/strength within that hero’s soul. As you’ll see below, many powerful Light cards either involve placing themselves within your soul or emptying it out to unleash a massive attack upon your opponent.
In the fight between Light and Shadow however, the realm of Shadow has one last trick up their sleeve. In the case of these dark heroes, it’s the summoning of demon allies to the field through the abilities of special legendary specialization cards unique to each Shadow hero.
Although many things must go correctly to be able to summon these demon allies, they present an entirely new aspect of the game which has never existed before. You must now choose between two targets, either your opponent themselves or your opponent’s ally.
If you’re not able to clear these allies off the field quickly enough, they can stay on and create a variety of issues for you as they attack for six each turn as zero cost! Choose to attack them on any given turn however and your opponent will be left with a strong hand to play for themselves the turn after.
In the battle between the Shadow and Light, these demon allies may be the key to tipping the scales in favor of the dark arts of the Shadow.
It’s only been the first week of Monarch spoilers and they’ve already flipped the community on its head. As the picture slowly becomes clearer, it’ll be more and more interesting to see what James White and company had in mind for the complete vision of Flesh and Blood many years ago. Until then, I’ll leave you with a few of my favorite spoiler cards so far this season.