L5 Previews II - Before the Dawn
This week on TCGplayer, we continue our exploration of Before the Dawn, the newest expansion for Legend of the Five Rings, which will be hitting stores in May.
Last week we looked at Brothers of Goemon and String of Victories, two cards aimed at helping you achieve an Enlightenment victory. Putting the five Elemental Rings into play is but one of the many ways one can win a game of L5R, though. Beginning one's turn with 40 Honor is another way to do so, and Before the Dawn brings Honor players some interesting new toys.
The default option for Honor decks in the Celestial environment so far has been to go to battle as little as possible, instead using control cards to slow down the opponent long enough to reach 40 Honor with at least one province. Before the Dawn provides Honor decks with tools to play a different game, though, one in which they try to actually win battles in order to gain some more Honor.
Much like last week's Brothers of Goemon, Hida Defenders is a cheap 2F Follower that will grant your Personalities some measure of protection simply by virtue of being an attachment. Its Honor-gaining Reaction also encourages you to oppose military decks that attack you, so you can defend your provinces and move closer to your victory condition at the same time. The Defenders should also give you a nice boost against non-military decks, allowing you, for instance, to attack into dishonor decks while still threatening to gain Honor if they try to defend. It is also the perfect Follower for a switch deck trying to both be aggressive and gain Honor.
Terrains, due to the fact that there can only ever be one at a given battlefield, tend to provide potent effects, and Rocky Terrain is no exception. Though it won't actually do anything until right before a battle's resolution, it will let you bow two attacking Personalities of your choice, which should result in a major Force swing.
Rocky Terrain can be used in two different ways. Since its effect will trigger regardless of whether you control someone at the current battlefield before the battle's resolution, you can use it early by defending with one Personality you don't mind losing and dropping the Terrain, which should let you thwart your opponent's early attacks if he doesn't have anything to destroy it. Alternatively, you can also use it more aggressively, so to speak, and play it in conjunction with other Battle actions to try to destroy your opponent's army and gain some Honor. And with its 4 Focus Value, Rocky Terrain can even be used in dueling decks to provide some additional defense.
Don't forget to check back next week for more Before the Dawn previews!
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