Are you prepared to endure the trials of the Ten?
The next Shadowverse set – Omen of the Ten – is launching at the end of September and I’m hugely excited. Why? Because the overall theme is quite dark and twisted, and it feels like developer Cygames is having heaps of fun with the gameplay concepts that come along with it.
Omen of the Ten, you see, refers to ten characters – each a legendary card in the set – each of which has a unique theme, often tied to their Omen number. The Omen of One, Mjerrabaine, for instance, is Shadowverse’s first card to promote singleton decks – i.e. decks with only one copy of each card (aside from Mjerrabaine himself in this case). Valnareik, Omen of Lust – the seventh Omen and a Bloodcraft legendary – has an ability that’s activated if your leader has taken damage at least seven times during the match. The ninth Omen, meanwhile, is Raio, Omen of Truth, a Runecraft legendary with a fanfare that spellboosts all the cards in your deck nine times. Woah!
It seems that each Omen will have a set of Apostles, Disciples and the like to create a unifying theme. Forestcraft, for instance, has the sixth Omen – Izudia, Omen of Unkilling, who has a fanfare that changes the enemy leader’s maximum defence to six. Alongside him are a number of other Unkilling cards. Servant of Unkilling and Disciple of Unkilling, for instance, are both followers that debuff an enemy follower – lowering their attack. These then potentially synergise with Mark of the Unkilling – a zero play point spell that banishes an enemy follower with zero attack or less. (And then draws a card.)
It’s going to be cool to see all the separate themes come together as more cards are revealed… so let’s help that process along! IGN has three Omen of the Ten cards to reveal.
Let’s start with the big bad – Calamity Bringer, a Bloodcraft legendary with an insanely powerful fanfare AND evolve effect.
The ability to randomly destroy three other followers is huge, as this one card can swing back the board if you’re behind and establish a big threat at the same time. Yes, it can hit your own followers too but you can trade them in if need be to control what gets targeted, and if you’re ahead, well, you just hold the card. If the Omen of Ten meta has tier one tempo decks this card will be a great counter.
This one card can swing back the board if you’re behind and establish a big threat at the same time.
Of course, the trickiest part of Calamity Bringer is navigating its downside – particularly with cards like Blood Moon and Mask of the Black Death long gone from the Rotation format. Dealing seven damage (which ties back into Valnareik, Omen of Lust) to yourself could be absolutely back-breaking, so finding the right time to play Calamity Bringer could be easier said than done. If Mid-range Sword is pressuring you, for instance, but you’re not in Vengeance your health could drop very low if you play this.
In concert with Valnareik, Calamity Bringer will certainly be in a deck that’s all about self-harm, hopefully alongside tools to bounce back out of Vengeance. It will also likely be in a control deck or a tempo deck (should such a thing exist for Blood), as those are the decks that want to control or clear the board in the mid-game.
Calamity Bringer isn’t just a defensive card, however, it’s also a finisher thanks to its evolve effect. Theoretically you’ll clear the board with its fanfare then evolve for nine face damage. Nice!
The other Bloodcraft card we have to reveal is Dark Elemental, a silver rarity follower that benefits from an allied follower being destroyed before it’s played.
In other words, you can trade in one of your followers even if you can’t quite finish a big threat off, as you know you have an additional two damage thanks to this card. Even without that ability triggering, Dark Elemental has excellent base stats, although obviously its Last Words can be a liability in many situations.
The third card we’re revealing is a neutral, silver rarity follower – Armored Troll.
This chunky follower represents better-than-vanilla stats for his cost, but has a significant drawback – you can’t use him for trading. Of course, you can also go through Ward, but is that a big enough upside? Armored Troll also doesn’t impact the board on the turn it’s played, so I think this is a card that will likely only be used in Take Two and potentially by people with very limited card collections. Even so, effects like this add interesting options to the game.
So those are our cards. Like the last couple of sets, Omen of the Ten will be released in two stages. 97 cards will be released at the end of September and then an additional 17 cards (one gold and one legendary for each of the eight classes plus one neutral gold) alongside two new leader cards will be released in the second half of November.
Let me know what you think in the comments and be sure to head to the official Omen of the Ten site to find out more about the set. There’s also a cool page focusing on the Omen themselves. Oh, and new cards are steadily being revealed on the official Shadowverse Twitter and Facebook accounts, and being compiled on the subreddit.
Cam Shea is Editor in Chief of IGN’s Australian content team and tries to spend as much time as possible in Japan. He’s on Twitter.