Ancient Nights ~ Preview 5 ~ He Who Rules Elvenkind

Good evening, rulers! Welcome back to our ongoing coverage of the Reiya Cluster booster set, Ancient Nights! A few days ago we finished off the previews of the Reiya Cluster starter decks which come out tomorrow, but our coverage of Ancient Nights will be continuing for several more weeks. So don't worry about getting that fix of brand new cards! Anyway, we've seen two of the three J/rulers in Ancient Nights and today we're finally going to see the third. Last week we met the rebellious Dark Elves. This week we'll meet their counterparts, the Elves.

Our J/ruler is a ruler in the literal sense. Faerur Leetoliel is the king of the Elves. He has a Judgment cost of three, like every other ruler in the Reiya Cluster excepting Pandora of course. He has Energize for his element, wind. So you'll gain a coin that can be banished to produce one wind will if you're the second turn player, to help you keep pace with your opponent. On his ruler side, Faerur only has one ability, but its a very useful one for the early and mid game. By resting two Elf resonators you control, you can recover a magic stone. While the ability can only be used once per turn, it can effectively increase the amount of will you can produce each turn by one allowing you to out pace your opponent by playing higher costing cards more quickly. Lets not forget that you can play this ability on your opponent's turn too! Rest two of your Elves to recover a stone and then surprise your opponent with a counter card! Faerur might only have one ability on his ruler side, but its incredibly versatile.

Once you pay Faerur's Judgment cost, the elvish lord marches onto the field as Faerur Letoliel, King of Wind. He's got 800 ATK and 1000 DEF. Not the worst for his Judgment cost, but less combat capable than some of the other J/rulers we've seen thus far in the Reiya Cluster. That's not too much of an issue though as a true king never fights alone, he has many loyal elven subjects to fight for him! Faerur enters the field with four gale protection counters, which can be used for several different abilities. You can remove a gale protection counter from Faerur to grant an Elf Barrier until the end of the turn. Note that this can be used to protect other Elf cards, but also Faerur himself if need be, which is always nice. You can also remove a gale protection counter to power up an Elf card by +300/+300 until the end of the turn. Since this ability can be played at instant speed, it is often in your best interest to wait until you know your attacker will get through to your opponent before using counters to beef it up. As said before, Faerur is a king, and kings are never without their guard. When Faerur enters the field as a J-ruler, you'll be able to search your deck for an Elf resonator with a total cost of four or less and put it right into your field! Obviously you're going to want to use this to pick out the strongest Elf card you possibly can, which puts a rather big target on it for your opponent. Thankfully, you can protect the powerful resonator you play with Faerur's gale protection counters, so it shouldn't be too difficult to keep it alive until it can start doing some damage.

Like the other J/rulers of the Reiya Cluster, Faerur has his signature magic stone. Saintly Magic Stone is a Special Magic Stone that counts as a Wind Magic Stone. Remember, this does not mean it counts as a Basic or non-Special Magic Stone, this ability only interacts with effects that specifically state "Wind Magic Stone". The card can be rested to produce wind will of course, Faerur's primary attribute. It can also be rested to power up an Elf by +100/+100 until end of turn. Rather simple, but still useful for decks focused on Elf cards. If this card is recovered prior to your recovery phase, you can put it to good use powering up one of your Elf cards each turn to get in a little extra damage!

If you haven't figured it out yet, Faerur is all about swarming over the opponent with Elf cards. Portal in the Woods is a great way to start building your forces to gain dominance of the field. When this total cost two addition enters the field it triggers an automatic ability that puts five guidance counters on it. Then, at the end of your turn, you remove a guidance counter from the addition and produce a 100/100 wind Elf resonator token. You can only produce one token per turn, but if you play two copies of the addition to your field you can quickly build up the number of Elf cards in your field to quickly overrun your opponent. If you're still a bit doubtful of how a J-ruler and a bunch of 100/100 resonator tokens are going to claim the victory, just wait a moment, it'll become clear soon enough.

Our next card, Spirit Caller Elf is another card to start helping you swarm the field. Its a total cost one resonator that enters the field with 100/100. Doesn't seem all that great, especially when 《Sacred Elf》is so often the standard first turn Elf card. However, when Spirit Caller Elf enters the field, she grants you a 100/100 wind Elf resonator token. Remember, Faerur can rest two Elf cards to recover one of your magic stones once per turn. Elf tokens are just as viable for that ability as actual Elf resonators, so play this card and you've got everything you need to start recovering magic stones!

Our next resonator is Commander of the Crowd. She's a 700/700 Elf resonator. Similar to Spirit Caller Elf, she creates two 100/100 wind Elf resonator tokens when she hits the field, furthering our goal of swarming the field as much as possible. That's not all though as her namesake really comes from her second ability. Whenever she attacks, all other elves you control gain +100/+100 until end of turn, effectively doubling the strength of all 100/100 wind Elf resonator tokens you've got on the field. Doesn't seem like all that much, but consider all the ways we've seen to generate resonator tokens in this article alone. Small buffs like this can really add up with enough Elves on the field to benefit from it.

And if that's not enough of a buff, here's our victory condition. Faerur's Command is a whopping total cost seven chant card. Thankfully though, with Fearur's ability to recover a stone, and cards like 《Sacred Elf》and 《Sorceress of Heavenly Wind, Melfee》, generating seven will a few turns earlier to play this card shouldn't be too much of an issue. Once played, the chant gives all resonators you control +1000/+1000 and, perhaps more importantly, Pierce. Pierce is a somewhat rare keyword where if an attacking J/resonator with Pierce is blocked by a J/resonator, and the attacker's ATK is higher than the blocker's DEF, the difference is dealt as damage to the original target of the attack before the blocker got in the way. This chant turns all of your Elf resonator tokens into massive lethal threats. Couple that with Pierce and sheer numbers and it'll be nearly impossible for your opponent to stave off the attack, allowing you to claim victory in a single, powerful strike. 

Alright, we've seen some good ways of generating Elf resonator tokens and ways to power them up. What about just a really solid Elf resonator card, one that makes for a good target with Faerur's ability. That is exactly why we have Tia Letoliel, Archer Princess of Elves. She's a total cost four Elf resonator that enters the field with 900 ATK and DEF. When she hits the field, she triggers an automatic ability that allows you to search your deck for her companion card, Tia's White Falcon and put it into your hand. Tia's White Falcon is pretty necessary for getting maximum value out of Tia, so you'll want to play Tia with an extra wind will available to play her falcon right afterwards. Tia has a second entry ability that grants an automatic ability to a resonator until end of turn. The granted ability makes it so when that resonator takes damage it is immediately destroy, so you'll want to target an opponent's resonator with Tia's ability. But how are we going to deal damage to the opponent's resonator this turn when Tia doesn't have Swiftness? We'll get to that in a second. For now let's proceed to Tia's final ability. It's a powerful activate ability that costs a total of six will to play and also requires you to rest Tia. A hefty cost to be sure, but upon resolution the ability will deal 1000 damage to a player! Its certainly costly, and its only one will away from playing Faerur's Command which is a more reliable way to defeat your opponent, but having the option to pick off your opponent with direct damage is a good option for when you find yourself in a tight spot in the late game turns.

Lastly is Tia's White Falcon. As stated before, its a total cost one resonator that enters the field with 200 ATK and DEF as well as Flying. Not too bad for a first turn card, but its best played on the same turn as Tia. This is because the falcon gains Swiftness as long as you control Tia and because whenever Tia's White Falcon attacks, it deals 200 damage to target player or resonator. This ability is how you finish the combo set up by Tia's ability that causes a resonator to be destroyed when it takes damage. Play Tia, search out Tia's White Falcon and put it into your hand, target your opponent's strongest resonator with Tia's 'destroy when it takes damage' ability. Next, play Tia's White Falcon on the same turn, which now has Swiftness, and attack with it. Toss the 200 damage from the falcon's ability at that resonator you targeted with Tia's ability, and presto! You've just played two fairly powerful resonators and destroyed your opponent's top resonator, all for five will! This one two combo is great for continuing our strategy of stuffing the field full of as many resonators as we can, while also getting some control out of it by removing an opposing threat.

Reiya Cluster 1st Set 「Ancient Nights」