Hey everyone! For this week’s Card of the Week, I wanted to talk about a Summon that has been my absolute favorite Summon ever since I first started playing FFTCG, Valefor [1-198S]. I love this card so much that I brought it up during my interview to join the FFTCG Team. There is a lot to say about it, so let’s get started.
Valefor’s first appearance is in FINAL FANTASY X where she is Yuna’s very first aeon. While she does have some minor appearances in other games, such as WORLD OF FINAL FANTASY, and DISSIDIA 012 FINAL FANTASY, she’s a major part of the story in FINAL FANTASY X, and the Summon most associated with Yuna. Even this card’s art has Yuna on the picture, taken from an iconic moment in FINAL FANTASY X where Yuna makes a daring escape from the top of the palace in Bevelle.
Valefor’s abilities, which make her incredibly strong in FINAL FANTASY X, are represented well in her FFTCG card. The first is an ability called “Sonic Wings” which inflicts “Delay” on enemies, allowing Valefor to take an additional turn before the opponent can attack back. The second is “Energy Ray,” a non-elemental attack that inflicts damage on all enemies. Timing these abilities correctly can allow you to take several actions before enemies have a chance to take one.
Let’s take a look at the card.
Valefor [1-198S] is a 2CP Wind Summon with an EX Burst that reads, “Deal 3000 damage to all the Forwards opponent controls. If you control Card Name Yuna, activate all the Backups you control.” Representing “Energy Ray,” 3000 damage to all enemy Forwards for 2 CP is already a nice ability on its own. You can use Valefor to force your opponent to trade a high cost Forward for your lower cost Forwards. The real beauty of this card comes from the second part, activating all of your Backups. While this effect doesn’t do much in the early game, once you reach 5 backups, you’re gaining 5 CP after playing a 2 CP card. Just like “Sonic Wings,” this allows you to take extra actions before your opponent gets a chance to take their turn. While it takes some building up, casting a late game Valefor with Yuna and 5 Backups is incredibly powerful.
So, which version of Yuna should you use?
If you’re playing any Water Summons in your deck, Yuna [1-177R] is a great choice, reducing the cost required to cast your Water Summons by 1. As a 2CP Water Backup, she’s easy to get out early, and hard to break. While her ability doesn’t directly interact with Valefor, she’s not a bad choice if you’d like to start casting your deck’s Summons as soon as possible.
Another option is Yuna [2-138L], the Songstress version of Yuna from FINAL FANTASY X-2. This Yuna is a 3 CP Water Forward with 7000 Power. When Yuna attacks, all Characters other than Light and Dark that your opponent controls lose all their abilities until the end of the turn. This is one of the most powerful auto abilities in FFTCG, not allowing your opponent to use any abilities after she attacks. Even field abilities are turned off by her ability, stopping powerful effects like Maria [1-083H], and Minwu [1-171H]. Her “Spherechange” special ability allows you to give her any Element and Job you want until the end of turn, allowing her to party attack with non-Water element Forwards, or gain Job specific effects. Yuna was always a Class Zero Cadet, right?
The major downside of this Yuna is that she’s a Forward, so your opponent can use a removal effect after you cast Valefor to prevent you from activating your Backups. While powerful, this is also easily the riskiest version of Yuna to play.
The best option, in my opinion, is Yuna [1-176H]. She’s a 5 CP Water Backup with an EX Burst that reads, “When Yuna enters the field, choose 1 Forward. Return it to its owner’s hand.” She also has a field ability which reads, “When a Character is put from the field into the Break Zone, you may remove it from the game instead.”
For a little bit of bonus lore, this version of Yuna is based on her performing a “Sending” ritual, which is depicted in the art. A Summoner can send the spirits of those who pass on to the Farplane, the afterlife of Spira, so that their soul doesn’t linger and can join the other souls who have passed on. Some unsent souls can even find a way to return to life as a fiend through hate and resentment, so it’s especially important to send those who had unfinished business.
In FFTCG, there are many strong auto abilities that trigger when a Character enters the Break Zone from the field. Yuna [1-176H] is amazing in the current meta where both of those types of abilities are very popular. She can “Send” Characters and stop your opponent from using that “hate and resentment” to perform additional abilities. Characters like Golbez [1-135L], Zack [3-012L], and Setzer [4-036H] become neutralized by Yuna [1-176H]. Even last week’s Card of the Week, Vanille [1-093H], gets stopped in her tracks by Yuna [1-176H]. I would strongly urge you to consider this version when looking for a version of Yuna to play with Valefor.
Paine [2-063R] will help you search for Yuna quicker, when she enters the field, you may search for 1 Card Name Yuna or 1 Card Name Rikku and add it to your hand. Even though she’s 3 CP for a 3000 Power Forward, her EX Burst ability searching for Yuna is worth it since you want to get Yuna onto the field as quickly as possible to get Valefor’s full effect.
Barbariccia [3-066R] also goes well with Valefor. A 4 CP, 7000 Power Forward is fairly standard, but when Barbariccia enters the field, choose 1 Forward opponent controls. Until the end of the turn, its power becomes 1000. You can play this before or after Valefor to reduce an enemy Forward’s power to a level where Valefor is Overkill. Keep in mind that effects like this will only reduce a Forward’s printed power, so any buffs a Forward may have will save it.
Lastly, we have Beatrix [4-135R]. I like to include Category IX characters like Zidane [3-056H], Garnet [3-129L] and Steiner [3-137R] in my Wind/Water decks, and Beatrix synergizes with that in the best way. For 3 CP, this Water element Forward has 7000 Power and a field ability which reads, “If you control Card Name Steiner, Beatrix gains +1000 power and “Beatrix doesn’t receive any damage from opponent’s abilities.” 3 CP for an 8000 Power Forward that doesn’t receive damage from abilities is great, but that’s not all she has. When Beatrix attacks, all the Forwards your opponent controls lose 1000 power until the end of the turn. Beatrix can pave the way for your other Forwards to safely attack in, or reduce the opposing Forwards’ power enough to remove them with Valefor. If you play Barbariccia and then attack with Beatrix, the Forward you chose with Barbariccia should have been reduced to 0 power (barring any buffs), allowing you to remove a threat with little effort.
And those are all of the tricks you can play without even going into Backup abilities that you could use multiple times a turn with Valefor! What are some of your favorite Backups to use with Valefor? Have any fun combos with Valefor and Yuna? One that I find really fun is the Dancer Backup and Lenne. See, you party attack with Yuna and—Oh! That’s all for this week!
Next week, we’ll start off our Opus V previews! Here’s a hint for the first one, this character has the Job “Warrior of Light.”
See you next week!