Hi everyone, this is RB. You’re probably wondering what’s up with these new spoiler articles. Typically we’ve sent out spoilers to players in the community and let them pretty much reveal them however they wanted, but Tim and I have decided to spruce things up a bit by reaching out to players in the community about groups of cards and getting their opinion on the whole set. Each article will have different players from all over the world giving their thoughts on upcoming cards, so we hope you’re excited to see what they have to say!
For the first Opus XI Community Spoilers, we have some cards from FINAL FANTASY XV. Now, we just had Nyx revealed on Twitter, but keep in mind that the players didn’t know Nyx was coming before commenting. Today’s group is the 2019 North American Champion Samsonite Prime, Worlds Participant Chris Mattiske, Winner of the first European Crystal Cup Evan Tanguy, US Player Mohammad Zaiem Ahmad from Cards of Ivalice, and Lee Madgwick from Madgers Market.
Let’s check out the cards and what our community guests had to say!
4 CP Earth Backup, Category XV, Job Chief Minister
EX BURST: When Clarus enters the field, you may search for 1 Job King and add it to your hand.
Sam: Clarus Amicitia is certainly a friend of the King and brings that lore to FFTCG. Backups that search backups are often very powerful, and Clarus is no exception. With backups in 5 different colors that he can search for, Clarus can fix colors and smooth out draws. One of those backups he can search for is Epitav, who can in turn search for Undead Princess and free up precious backup space in the mid-late game. Of course, Clarus can also search up his good friend Regis, who can search up Ignis, and then Noctis. That kind of card advantage is nothing to scoff at.
Chris: The card with the simplest text is probably the best and most impactful. Long story short, this is a huge buff to Ranperre. It’s the correct colour [for that deck] and searches Ranperre itself. To add insult to injury, it also curves beautifully into King of Burmecia which searches Kain and in both cases sets up both main elements in backups. Outside of Ranperre, the search pool is actually pretty good, mainly for setting up backups in dual element decks. I didn’t realise how many Kings there were until I looked it up for this spoiler. More interestingly we are one good Claidie, Pieuje or Trion away from Destin being a real card and Clarus makes that super reliable.
Evan: Let’s try to be critical of Clarus: Ranperre decks already have Star Sibyl (5-091H) for the purpose of searching the backup, so I guess you could play it if you really want to add stability in the deck and EXs but it could be a little too much, so the card needs a lot of testing to determine if it has its slot in the deck and, if it the case, in how many copies. However, aren’t we forgetting about something here? Certainly that these Ranperre decks already have Sibyl to find the Ranperre? But what about L3? That’s a huge change for this format: all the parts of the Ranperre combo were really hard to find without the help of Sibyl, but now that Clarus is here, we need to prepare ourselves to face a lot of Ranperre decks in L3. Also maybe a FFXV deck? As there is not the issue of too many cards with the same purpose, I think that the card will be mandatory in FFXV (Standard and L3) and FFXV players will be pretty happy to add a great deal of stability and more EXs to their decks. After all, Clarus is a highly playable card with big potential to be included in competitive decks and will surely be tested a lot to define where and in how many copies we should play it.
Zaiem: I always like Backups then can search Backups. Plenty of good options such as Ranpeere, King of Burmecia, Epitav and Regis. In addition it’s a burst. FF XV seeing love as well. Pretty good card that is likely to see play.
Lee: Clarus will allow for quick backup setup in mono earth decks, but, due to there being Job "King" backups in every element except ice, this can also be used in dual colour decks. It will be difficult to leave this backup out of any deck running XV as this also searches for Regis, which will then combo nicely into any XV forward your heart desires. Clarus will be a great addition to your backup line, I fully expect to see this card played a lot.
2 CP Lightning Forward, Category XV, Job Captain, 5000 Power
The cost required to play your Lightning Forwards onto the fiel dis reduced by 1 (it cannot become 0). When Glauca or a Forward enters your field, choose 1 Forward. It gains +1000 power until the end of the turn.
Sam: General Glauca is one of the highest ranking members of the Niflheim army, only serving under Iedolas. No surprise we see such a strong version of him in FFTCG. Glauca is adept at gathering armies (having recruited members of the Glaive to turn against Regis) and maintains the characteristics here. Anyone who has played with other cost-reduction cards know they are capable of pretty powerful things. Glauca will excel in decks that swarm, perhaps pairing very nicely with cards like Judgement of Wings or the new Aranea (being a 2-cp Lightning forward is an added bonus)!
Chris: This card is really cool. Its first line of text is really powerful but funnily Lightning probably has the least amount of good Forwards to abuse it (which is maybe intentional). The 1000 power ability is deceptively relevant especially in the element that usually tries to cheese damage through to win. You can finally play Sakura L or Estinien L efficiently in the same turn you intend to use its action ability. Ramza L works very well with it too; Glauca itself effectively counts as 2 bodies for it and of course it makes other bodies easier to get out. Something a bit more subtle I didn’t think of immediately is that a lot of the playable Lightning Forwards cost 3 so usually you need a backup for each of them making it harder to efficiently play multiple in a turn. Glauca turns all of those to 2 so you can suddenly play as many as you want, and might even open up something like turn 1 Illua as a real threat instead of wasted CP. Other cards that benefit from that angle are Baknamy, Meia, Diana, and Alba. Also, worth noting that Glauca lets you play Edea without a discard.
Evan: Finally, a busted card for Lightning, I’ve missed it... On a more serious note, a cost 2 Lightning Forward with 5K strength is always nice to dodge the WOFF 4K ping as it is incredibly relevant right now. I would say that Glauca is an extremely powerful card to make big all-in turns and play all of your forwards at once (and maybe put an S effect Illua there to take advantage of the multiple +1k that Glauca gives you). And it’s here that I can talk about one of my favorite cards that I will now be able to play effectively in my mono Lightning: Ramza (5-118L). Glauca and Ramza have a great chemistry together: Glauca reduces the cost of all Lightning forwards and Ramza needs many forwards on board, but the best thing is that each time you play a forward Glauca is giving +1k to another forward, so you can give pretty much +2k to Ramza each time you play a forward… You could also pair Aranea and Glauca to make even deadlier turns when you’re on 6 damage…
Zaiem: First thought that came to mind... Illua is a 2 cost 7k. Really interesting ability to Reduce all Lightning Forwards cost by 1 which means cards like Edea (6cp) or Kain (8cp) can be played less awkwardly also. Also power boost are always welcome. I like the idea of playing this, then Al-Cid with the 3 backup left. I am not sure how much play this will see in Standard due to how easy it is to break, but I think there is potential here.
Lee: Glauca has some fantastic potential for hasty lightning builds. Glauca will work very well with any kind of haste mono lightning build. The second ability Glauca has allows you to ensure you are keeping your forwards around for longer. This ability could even be used on your opponent’s turn with cards like back attack Jinnai (8-100R) to take out an attacking 9000 power forward.
3 CP Lightning Backup, Category XV, Job Kingsglaive
When Crowe is put from the field into the Break Zone, choose 1 Forward in your Break Zone. Add it to your hand. Dull : put Crowe into the Break Zone : Choose 1 Forward. Dull it.
Sam: Crowe Altius is a gifted member of Kingsglaive with a willingness to sacrifice herself for her fellow Glaives. Crowe would pair well with forwards with special abilities like that of Illua and Cecil-L (5-086L) allowing to both break through defenses with her Dull ability, but also bring back copies of powerful forwards. She would be instrumental in Lightning decks in the L3 formats as another way to get Fusoya (9-094L) back is something to take seriously.
Chris: This card would be a lot less interesting if it was any element other than Lightning. It’s actually pretty cool and one of the best attempts at a hard cost 3 CP backup that doesn’t do anything in play. The main reason I’m more interested in it as a Lightning card is of course Cid Previa. Even outside of mono Lightning there would be decks with key cards or important finishers that benefit from a “safe” source of recursion, although, as usual, non turn one Backup is the most contested deck slot in the game. One interesting use is tying together the dull with the the recursion for Forwards that spike against dull forwards like Cloud of Darkness or Cid Raines (especially being able to match it with Rinoa easier).
Evan: I think it’s difficult to correctly weigh up the strength of the card because lightning has a lot of cost 3 backups and they’re all pretty strong and interesting. However, this card really speaks to me: Lightning has always lacked recursive backups that’ll interact easily with the Break Zone. But Crowe is doing it by herself because even if you need to break her, she does that with her effect that’ll also dull an opponent’s Forward. With that you can really setup a turn where you do a lot of things and kill the opponent with an S effect Illua that Crowe has taken back from the Break Zone ( we can see here a parallel with the three colours Ranperre deck and the use of Hurdy’s (9-030H) effect). That said, Crowe can also be a huge card to survive during the opponent’s turn by stalling for time with her dull effect. Maybe she can be played as a one off in some decks that really want to interact with the BZ, but if you’re not playing Previa she’s much harder to include despite her good points.
Zaiem: Probably will see more play in a XV Title deck than in Constructed. I do see this as a way to get back an illua or any other S abilities while also letting you dull a forward. It’s the lack of an enter field effect that may hold this back.
Lee: Crowe can be used on either yours or your opponents turns, having an active Crowe after your opponent has passed turn could make the opening you need to swing in for game. Crowe would work well with Warriors of Darkness giving you the ability to return Diana (8-101H) which when played can then return Alba (8-091H) from your break zone. Giving you a total of 3 dulls to your opponents field. Crowe could also work well with a XIII deck which includes Lightning (4-115L), as long as you have another XIII character on the field you would get 3 Dulls from this combination as well.
2 CP Lightning Backup, Category XV, Job Kingsglaive
2(Lightning)1(cp)(Dull), put Luche into the Break Zone: Choose 1 Forward. Break it. Your opponent draws 1 card.
Sam: Luche Lazarus is a leader among the Kingsglaive and has no issue with betrayal. One of the most fascinating things about his arrival in FFTCG is the lore that comes with him. Luche’s ability to break a forward can choose your own forwards in niche situations. The second part of that ability is actually incredibly unique as it’s one of only 3 cards that force your opponent to draw a card (and the first one in Lightning element). I could see a deck in which you combine these two abilities to force your opponent closer to deckout in sort-of-a turbo fog/mill deck.
Chris: This card is kind of hard to place. It doesn’t do anything immediately, its ability costs 4 CP in addition to its sacrifice and it has a super relevant drawback. It’s probably not feasible to use the ability unless it seals the win but Lightning has plenty of cards like that already. If mill was more viable and Lightning had any place in a mill deck then it would have been a funny way to close the game out but Rikku is gone and Lightning offers almost nothing else to the “strategy” if it exists. The last point about these four cards is that they’re all category XV so if you wanted you could make 2 CP Noctis super reliable which may be relevant when you can add Noctis & Gladiolus with Cindy.
Evan: This card strikes me as having assets that can eventually be used in future decks. The effect of destroying a forward for 4 cp and a backup can be really appealing, but by making the opponent draw a card it has a huge compensation that could discourage many of playing the card. I would say that the card is a little too weak compared to all the fantastic removals and cards to setup a lethal that are possible to play with the Lightning color. And yet, I really want to play him to just brag about how I killed a Yiazmat (9-057L) with a little cost two backup…
Zaiem: It’s very nice to see all these new additions coming into the game from FFXV. Luche is a playable 2 cp backup. Breaks any forward. Yes, it’s not cheap either (essentially 6cp due to cost + dull break + opponent gaining a card) but it doesn’t have a restriction that most effects like this do with what you can choose. I can definitely see this being run in decks like mono Lightning or Lightning Earth, which XV seems to be pushing for.
Lee: Luche has some great interactions in the right combo deck. Luche looks like it will be a very niche card on the surface, but given the right combination this could see a lot of play. The fact Luche draws your opponent a card could allow you to boost the damage from Black Waltz 2 if you were running it with Fire. Being able to break any forward even your own could allow for some interesting interactions with enter the break zone abilities. One of the more fun combinations is with Golbez (1-135L), the ability to break your own Golbez for 3cp to make use of his effect is fantastic.
So what do you all think? Are you excited for the new Kingsglaive characters? We’ll be doing 6 more groups of Community Spoilers, so check back here in a couple days!
See you then!