Article

Spark of Hope Blue Hero Initial Card Thoughts

Written by Bill Yankosky (aka Yodaman)

In this article, we switch sides and start by looking at the Blue hero cards in the set. Blue hero seemed to have been lagging behind lately, but things may be about to change.

As a reminder, I’m using a 4 point rating scale with the numbers generally representing the following:

4 – Potentially powerful card. Definitely thematic and useful in multiple decks.

3 – Solid card that could be very effective in the right build and fun to build around.

2 – Very situational card that will need the right deck and matchup to shine.

1 – Binder Fodder

My Top 3 Favorite

  1. Yoda – Of course I like Yoda. Look at my screen name.
  2. Jedi Mind Trick – Mass removal needed to come back and this card can do that (and more)
  3. Yoda’s Lightsaber – Incredible value for the cost and, it’s a Yoda related card.

My Least Favorite

  1. Three Lessons – Way, way too conditional
  2. Refusal – If only your opponent couldn’t deal damage to their own characters….
  3. Heroic Stand – By the time you meet the conditions for playing this card, it’s probably too late. Do like the art though.

Onto my thoughts and ratings!

R2-D2: 4 

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The first character version of R2 has received a lot of attention since he was spoiled due to the powerful disrupt/resource generating combo he has with the new C-3PO and Fateful Companions. Outside of that thematic pairing, R2 gives you cheap access to Blue although you cannot play Blue abilities on him, which makes sense. Being able to autofocus on of your dice to its first side can be good outside of the 3PO pairing as long as you find the right dice cards to use with that ability.

Rey: 3

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The other half of the build FFG wants people to try right out of the box by pairing her with Kylo3 and using Temporary Truce. Her Power Action is great since it’s versatile and obviously synergizes with Kylo since you could turn his die to the special. Her special will help keep you alive. Rey’s dice only have 2 sides that deal damage and seems to be a more defensive character and may not see much play outside of the Rey and Kylo pairing.

Yoda: 4 

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Not surprisingly I’m a big fan of our little green friend and really like the looks of this version of Yoda. Yoda is a Jedi and Leader which means he can be used for cards that require you to spot one of those subtypes. Having the +3 shield limit means you could potentially set up a big damage blow via Ataru Strike thanks to his 3 melee side or the new Qui-Gon Jinn’s Spirit if you have him loaded up with shields. The fact his shields can be used to block damage to Apprentice characters means you need to get shields on him as soon as you can. One interesting team I’d like to try is Elite Yoda2/Ahsoka2/Youngling just to see if there’s any potential synergy there.

Youngling: 3

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Since you have to have a Jedi on your team in order to include the Youngling, this 4 cost diceless character can’t be used to give you cheap access to Blue. The Power Action is reminiscent of the Padawan from Awakenings and is really good even if it doesn’t seem that thematic on the Youngling. The trick will be keeping the Youngling alive if you get an upgrade on him. Because of the Youngling’s low health, it would be risky to put upgrades on him unless they have redeploy. Clearly, the intent is to pair the Youngling (who is an Apprentice) with Yoda2 so you can use Yoda’s shields to protect him. Time will tell if that strategy will work.

Refusal: 1

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This downgrade would be incredible IF you couldn’t deal damage to yourself. Unfortunately, an opponent can turn off the effect of this very easily because of that and even use it to their advantage to ramp first and then deal damage to get rid of the downgrade.

Destiny Fulfilled: 3 

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This card should be useful in a deck with Yoda2 and at least one Youngling or in decks where a character is about to go down anyway. The trick will be to time this correctly in order to get the 3 shields and not hurt your own win condition.

Exchange of Information: 3

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Blue hero can definitely use resource generating cards. In some ways, this is like Truce since it’s possible for both you and your opponent to get resources from it if they are willing to show you’re their hand after you play the card. A savvy player will figure out a way to use this at a point in a round where revealing their own hand won’t be detrimental to their own cause.

Heroic Stand: 1

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Readying a character is certainly powerful and any card that does that needs to be designed in such a way that it’s not overpowered. Unfortunately, this card seems way to conditional for it to be useful. It costs 2, so it’s not cheap and you can only use it if you only have one character and your opponent has 3 or more dice showing damage. If this card had Ambush or less of a condition for use, it would certainly be better. Maybe there’s a way to trigger this with a fully shielded Yoda2 so that you could absorb the incoming damage, but it’s hard to see a way to really make this work effectively.

Humble Service: 2 

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This is an expensive card at 3, but being able to turn up to 4 of your dice to sides showing a different value is actually good value for the cost.  The problem is there is usually going to be a better use of resources.

Jedi Mind Trick: 4  

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Even though you have to spot a Jedi to play this card, it’s more versatile than the original Mind Trick since you can use it offensively or defensively. Villain has a lot of effective 0 cost removal, but they really don’t have access to anything quite as good as this card in terms of removal so it’s nice that hero has access to something like this now.

Moving Rocks: 2 

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This card seems way too situational although it can technically result in big damage swings by taking shields from your opponent and putting them on your own characters.  To get good value out of it, your opponent needs to have multiple shields when you play this though.

Yoda’s Protection: 2

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For 1 cost, you could easily get 3 or 4 shields out of this total if you’re running a Blue hero team with 3 or 4 characters (which is certainly possible with Younglings).  Should work great in Yoda2 decks.  But it seems to be a situationally good card and only good in certain teams.

Caretaker Village: 3 

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Being able to roll a Jedi or Apprentice die back into your pool after it’s been removed is a great ability.  The card actually triggers immediately after the die was removed so, like with Suppressive Fire, you’ll still have the next action after you roll the die back in.  It’s not exactly Vader3’s Power Action, but the fact this is a support that stays on the table means you won’t lose it if a character goes down.  That means it’s a little more flexible than Resilient.

Professor Huyang: 4 

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If you use the Professor, you’ll want to build around him and include weapon upgrades on your team in addition to making sure you have some Apprentice characters.  But that fact you can roll in the weapon die without activating the character you attached the weapon to while at the same time activating the support means you’re essentially getting 2 actions at once.  His die sides are solid, especially since there aren’t any blanks.  The 2 focus side and 2 resource side, in particular, will almost always come in handy.

Qui-Gon Jinn’s Spirit: 3

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Like Yoda’s Spirt, Qui-Gon’s spirit can’t be on the board if you have Qui-Gon on your team and that certainly is understandable.  The special on is particularly good if you can set it up since it’s effectively like Riposte and can deal damage from the shields even though you have to shuffle the card back into your deck when you resolve it.  For only 1 cost, it’s definitely worth it.

Three Lessons: 1

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Not a big fan of this card because it’s pretty conditional. You have to spot a Jedi to use it and you can only turn an Apprentice die.  Thematically, I see what they were going for, but practically it doesn’t seem that useful.

Jedi Lightsaber: 3 

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This is a solid 2 cost melee weapon for Blue hero. When you play it you get the old Jedi Robes effect and get to give the character 1 or 2 shields depending on whether or not the character is a Jedi, but it has damage sides as well.  This can easily be overwritten almost immediately with a more powerful weapon, if needed, after you get your shields.

Sacred Jedi Texts: 2  

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For a 1 cost upgrade, this is okay.  Focus is always good, but the +1 resource sides require there to be other dice showing base resource sides to make use of it.  The special lets you draw a card and that’s never a bad thing.  It’s pretty thematic that you can move the Sacred Jedi Texts back and forth between Jedi and Apprentice characters to get use out of the die more than once each round or move it, then overwrite with something better for a discount.

Yoda’s Lightsaber: 4

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Yoda’s Lightsaber seems to be about as good as you could expect for a 1 cost weapon.  I like that the design team has been designing upgrades that give bonuses when played on its matching character and this does that by giving Yoda a shield when you play it on him.  Like all Yoda related dice cards, this one also has no blanks and 4 sides that can deal damage.  Considering the specials should easily be able to deal 2 unblockable damage when on Yoda because of his shielding emphasis and it’s hard to think of a 1 cost upgrade that gives better value.

Thanks for reading.  Next time – Red hero is up.   May the Force be with you!

 

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