So, today is Friday and that means the official Hex website does an update! Today’s update revealed the Ardent PvP Champions, so lets take a look at them!
Feather Drifting Downriver
Feather Drifting Downriver is perhaps going to be the most immediately popular out of the Ardent Champions, as the ability to give any troop Flight is extremely potent. Almost any troop will be able to make use of this, and since it only costs 3 Charge, you will probably get to use it 2 or even 3 times per game. It’s threshold of 2 Sapphire is an obvious drawback, as it means you’ll have to be using a decent amount of Sapphire in your deck to ensure you actually get to use it, but it’s a great ability none the less. Imagine combining it with something like the Shield Trainer and having units with Flight and Steadfast. Powerful stuff.
Of course, the best thing about this guy is clearly his hat. We’ve seen very little when it comes to Coyotle cards, so maybe wearing entire animals on your head is normal for them, but this guy seems a little eccentric to me.
Polonius is great for a few reasons. I really dig this card art for starters – covered in glowing magical weapons and leafy green camouflage he looks every bit the fantasy ranger (though I’m not entirely sure what use tree camouflage is in the middle of an open plain) and his expression seems to say “I suppose I have to kill this guy now, too.” He’s certainly one of the more characterful Ardent Champions.
Obviously his Charge power is the things most people are interested in though, and it’s a nice one – the ability to summon a Mammoth Squirrel Titan! It’s obviously an expensive power – in fact, with a Charge cost of 8, it’s the most expensive Charge power – and with it’s 3 Wild threshold requirement, you’re probably only going to be using this in Wild-heavy decks, but the Squirrel itself is a real beast – a 6/6 troop with Crush. This may well be powerful enough to help bring in the win, as you’re obviously only going to be summoning this guy late in the game. Unless, of course, you use some of the tricks that are available to charge yourself faster, in which case you can massively disrupt your opponent by summoning him in early.
Tetzot, Son of Omoc
Out of all the Ardent Champions, Tetzot has the most interesting ability, though not necessarily the most powerful. He also has a hat that rivals Feather Drifting Downriver’s, so there’s that. Anyway! The crux of this guy’s power is that it’s a huge gamble – create a troop and check out the top 10 cards of your deck; the troop becomes X/X, where X is the number of resources in those 10 cards, and then shuffle the cards back into your deck. Now, you’re probably thinking “Hey, if those 10 cards are all resources, I’ll have a 10/10 troop!” Well, yes, but how likely is that to happen, really? Not very, and if it does then it likely means you’re deck is so clogged with resources that you won’t be able to do anything else.
Of course, it’s possible that all your resources are just clumped together – it can happen – in which case this card will be a huge win for you as you’ll get a massive troop and get to shuffle your deck up a bit, but realistically you won’t be getting anything bigger than a 5/5 out of this guy with any regularity, and you’ll probably only average a 3/3. And, there’s always the risk that you’ll end up with 0, and the troop will die instantly has it has no defence.
So, that’s the gamble – you might get something great, you might get something mediocre, and you might get nothing at all. The value you get out of Tetzot will probably depend on how many resources you have in your deck, and though a free troop is never anything to turn your nose up at, with a Charge cost of 6, at that point in the game you’ll be hoping for something a little more substantial than a 1/1 pile of rocks. Of course, with well over half of Set 1 yet to be revealed there might well be some cards that help you stack the deck in your favour beforehand. And hell, if that doesn’t work you can probably find some way of using that hat to beat your opponent into submission.
We saw Lionel Flynn in one of the TwitchTV streams, so there’s no real surprise here – his charge ability is solid, if not especially interesting. Giving a permanent +2 ATT to a troop is a good trick to have up your sleeve, especially towards the end of a game where that extra 2 damage might help catch your opponent off guard and win the match.
The reason I wanted to mention him, though, is that he positively oozes charm. Everything about him suggests rogue in every sense of the word, from the cocked eyebrow to the fact that even with a knife between his teeth you can still see a sly grin. The garish gold and ruby necklace worn in the middle of his otherwise completely black stealthy clothing is practically daring people to spot him and, just in case someone actually manages it, he has 2 crossbows at his side, clearly ready to shoot himself out of trouble.
This is one of the things I love about Hex; they could have just given you a list of powers to pick from and left it at that, and no one would have minded at all. The fact that they’ve gone to the effort of creating these characters who, even though we’ll probably only ever see these single images of them, are filled with personality just shows how much thought and effort they are putting into the game.
That’s all for today, a small look at a few of the Ardent Champions available. Check out the rest of them on the Hex website and post a comment below to let us know which is your favourite!
In other news, you might have noticed that Casual Hex is now on Twitter! You can follow along at @Casual_Hex and join the social revolution or some such nonsense!