Welcome back to Collision Point. Today we’re going to be looking ahead to the new set of Flesh and Blood: Tales of Aria.
So far we know we’re going to see three new heroes. The first one who has been spoiled is Lexi who will be our second ranger. Based on the lore, which we’ll check out here in a moment, I predict that we’ll also see an Illusionist hero and a Guardian hero.
Another wizard or a brand new class like a bard are also good possibilities.
Zach from Team Covenant has mentioned multiple times that he fully bought into Flesh and Blood and Legend Story Studios as whole after he read the lore book that LSS sent out to retailers. After going through the lore on their web site, I can certainly see why.
Let’s look at some of the land of Aria, so that we can continue to predict what’s coming in the next set.
For thousands of years, the fantastical realm of Aria has remained untouched by the passage of time, far removed from the chaos and struggles that affect the rest of the world. Iridescent flora and verdant trees cover the landscape in brilliant colors, as vibrant as the people who call this land home. With great mountain ranges glittering with ice and snow, vast forests of green and gold, and lush meadows filled with vibrant flowers, the rolling hills of this fantastical realm are teeming with life.
A true sanctuary, Aria’s abundant resources are nurtured by the mysterious energy known as the Flow. The Flow shapes and changes the landscape as it passes, transforming mountains into valleys, and forests into plains. The energy of the Flow has created some of the most incredible scenery in all of Rathe, creating plains of constant thunderstorms, and forests of translucent fungi.
The people here are accustomed to a life of comfort, as the rich, plentiful landscape of Aria provides them with everything they could possibly need. Natural defenses and ancient magics protect the land, hiding Aria and its people from the outside world. Generations of a peaceful, carefree lifestyle have cultivated a society rich with bards, musicians, performers, and entertainers; their taverns serving some of the most fantastical liquors and spirits known to man.
Yet, in recent years, Aria has experienced a transformation. The barriers that once concealed and protected Aria have begun to fracture, revealing its existence for the first time in centuries. Outlanders threaten to breach the borders and enter Aria, while the Flow has become unstable, transforming the land at an increasing rate. This once peaceful region has entered a new era of uncertainty, as its people rise up to defend their homeland from the outside world.fabtcg.com
This initial glimpse into Aria lets us know a few things. This is a land of magic powered by something called the Flow. The energy of the Flow has become unstable as the barriers which had kept Aria hidden are breaking down, allowing threats to change the lives of the Arian inhabitants.
Personally, I severely hope that the woman from Exude Confidence is one of the new heroes who is pushing through the boundaries into Aria because she looks incredible. However, that turns out to not be the case, Aria clearly has the potential to bring us some incredible new characters.
Now let’s skip ahead in the lore article to a section that could be pointing us in the direction of another Illusionist character joining Flesh and Blood. This section is called:
The Everfest Carnival
The people of Aria are never more excited than when the Everfest Carnival is near. A giant, travelling circus, the Everfest Carnival is the size of a small town, boasting hundreds of tents and attractions. The Everfest has been a staple within Aria for centuries, travelling from village to village, growing larger with every passing decade. Some of the oldest families in Aria are part of the Everfest, their ancient traditions evolving to number among the most popular Carnival acts.
One of the most well-known sectors of the Everfest is the Maela, a group of tents boasting fortune-tellers, seers, oracles, enchantresses and conjurers. Members of the Maela are known for their strange and wondrous talents, performing enchantments and acts of mystery for those with an open mind.
Another sector of the Everfest Carnival is the Valdur, known for strongman acts and their work with animals. From massive Fianna to fierce Vitre’o, these creatures are well-trained, proudly performing before crowds to rousing applause. Some of these creatures also help to transport the Carnival, using their strength to pull carts and carry goods.
Many other acts exist within the Everfest. Some, such as the Legendarium, are larger acts staged with the help of a team; others are smaller, the work of small families or individuals.fabtcg.com
In this land of powerful magic and the Flow, we are surely in store for another magic-based hero. The plain Illusionist cards from Monarch don’t give us any significant clues about what the next Illusionist hero might focus on, but we can see that Spectral Shield tokens will still be involved and that their attacks can still utilize Phantasm.
That set of cards from Monarch may also be showing us the same white-haired character. She doesn’t appear to be working in a carnival, though, so perhaps she’ll re-emerge in a later set.
The Everfest Carnival information also gives me another hope—more allies! Powerful creatures who can perform and are strong enough to pull the carts of carnival equipment could introduce some interesting new mechanics to the Illusionist class.
This potential new hero would still have access to Iris of Reality as well as any new weapons from Tales of Aria.
Prism has certainly proven to be powerful and versatile in the current meta, and I would be excited to see another iteration of the Illusionist class enter the game.
The second section about the Everfest Carnival gives us a clue regarding a potential new class to the game in lieu of an Illusionist character and that would be a Bard Hero.
The magic of the Everfest Carnival comes from its people, those who have made a home with the travelling carnival. Some set up food stalls, weaving spools of spun sugar, making tiny handheld pastries, and hot toasted bannock; others run small bars providing unique, magical spirits and liqueurs. However, most of the Carnival belongs to its performers.
Trapeze artists flying above the audience, silk dancers weaving their way through the air, escape artists freeing themselves from chains and barrels filled with water, stunt performers who set themselves on fire and throw themselves through a maze of razor-sharp blades. Animal trainers, strongmen, fire breathers, sword swallowers, jugglers, acrobats, contortionists, jesters, harlequins, hoop divers, knife throwers, and actors recreating the legends of old.
Some stage their performances within the circus tents, whilst others perform underneath the sky, enchanting passers-by. Stilt-walkers wander through the crowds, while bards recount tales of old to enchanted audiences, and faint, ethereal music drifts through the air. Circles of tents provide a space for fortune-tellers and oracles to practice their secret arts, curtains drawn back to reveal the candlelit tables within. Illusions and displays of light weave their way through the air above, while below, the enchantresses and illusionists dance, their golden jewelry chiming with every movement.fabtcg.com
Adding bards would, I’m sure, excite many tabletop role players who also play Flesh and Blood. Bards are fun, creative magic-users who utilize song and music with their enchantments. We have one previous card from Arcane Rising which could clue us in on how the developers would handle a bard class.
Enchanting Melody is an aura with Go Again that can soak some damage, similarly to a spectral shield. It costs two and would typically be destroyed at the beginning of your end phase. However, it can stay in play if you have played a non-attack action card this turn.
I could easily see a bard class employing several non-attack action cards similar to this aura.
The article gives us six “crafts” that some of the people in Aria possess. I wish we were getting a hero for each of these classes, but Aria will only include three new adult heroes. I’m hopeful that we will also receive some new young heroes to showcase some of the mechanics which these craft-users could possess in Flesh & Blood.
Let’s take a look at these crafts:
While taverns are not an uncommon sight in Aria, and many have tried their hand at brewing spirits and ale, Braumeisters are among the most elite of their trade. Spirits made by a Braumeister possess unique effects, depending on the kind of spirit, the ingredients used, and the person brewing it.
The first step of any wayfarer’s training is the creation of a dowsing disc, a finely tuned instrument that allows wayfarers to read the changes in the land around them. In an ever-changing landscape, the help of a wayfarer is invaluable, as they map out new paths and discover new locations.
In an era of change, where the ancient barriers between Aria and the outside world are breaking down, defenders have risen to protect their home from outsiders. Those who break through and enter Aria with ill intentions, whether to steal or harm, will quickly find themselves at the mercy of patrolling defenders. Groups of defenders can be found travelling between villages, guarding their home and keeping an eye out for trouble.
While wayfarers can read the lay of the land, diviners learn to read the Flow itself. They can see the currents within the Flow and follow patterns to predict how the Flow will shape the world around it. Diviners are also able to follow these currents to discover where the Flow is strongest, and areas more susceptible to change.
Legend speaks of powerful shamans, capable of creating incredible specters with a wave of their hand. Now, shamans are best known for their work within the Everfest, creating breathtaking displays by manipulating the Flow around them.
A dreamer is a person with a natural-born gift – the waking sleep, a state in which dreamers can glimpse fragments of the past, present and future. For some, visions can even come to them when fully awake, catching glimpses of what might be, and echoes of those who came before.
Let’s start at the top—Braumeisters, or brew masters, gives us a glimpse at a potential potion-brewing class of hero. At the very least, I expect to see some more potions added to this set, perhaps they’ll be similar to Crazy Brew with a dice rolling mechanic to determine their potency in battle.
Wayfarers certainly sound like a sub-group of the ranger class. I wonder if Lexi will have this classification in her adult subtitle. According to the explanations of the Meeps creatures in the article, the wayfarers dowsing disc could be part of their bracers or gauntlets. We can see some beautiful crystalline equipment in Lexi’s art, perhaps her disc will be a key part of her design.
Defenders give me hope for another Guardian character either in adult or only young form. The lore gives us a heavy-handed idea that this magical utopia of Aria is in certain danger now that it is more discoverable than ever. The defenders will likely be on front lines in Aria’s defense.
The last three crafts, Diviners, Shamans, and Dreamers all sound like our new magic-based hero. Perhaps we’ll get more than one! However the Flow enters into Flesh and Blood mechanically, Diviners, whether as a hero or in the art of generic cards, seem to be the avenue into bringing this aspect of the lore to the table. The Shaman description reminded us of what we already know about the Illusionist class. We even get the detail that Shamans are best known for their work in Everfest. An illusionist with shaman flavoring has me sold, that’s for sure.
Lastly, Dreamers emerge as a sorcerer or prophet-like class. Mechanically, I could see a Dreamer character getting access to their opponent’s hand or being able to Opt not only their deck, but their opponent’s as well. Imagine a Dreamer vs. Chane match in which the Dreamer can take a glimpse at what Soul Shackle is about to banish to plan accordingly.
Next up in the lore is some straight-up mythology. Similarly to our real-world creation myths, we start in a time of darkness, void, and or chaos. Let’s check out:
Legend of the Exalted One
Long ago, the world of Rathe was cast in darkness, and its people cried out in fear. No plant could grow, no creature could see, and all was silent and still. And so, the Exalted One, great creator of Life, gave light to the world, plucking two stars from distant skies. One star became the sun and was placed within a chariot of radiant gold. The other became the moon and was placed within a chariot of shining silver. However, all was not yet complete.
The Exalted One gave life to two new beings, a pair of divine beings known as Badr and Asra. Bright, lively Badr was given the golden chariot, and two swift steeds of vibrant flame. Quiet, thoughtful Asra was given the silver chariot, and two gentle steeds of pale frost. At once, the twins took to the sky. The light of golden Badr brought day to the children of Rathe, a time of life and of creation. The light of silver Asra brought night, the time to rest and to recharge. Thus, the people of Rathe flourished beneath the light of the stars, and the twins have proudly fulfilled their duty ever since.fabtcg.com
The Exalted One takes on the role of many dieties from earth’s mythologies. They plucked stars from the fabric of the universe to bring light to darkened Rathe.
I do have to wonder if the god-like figures from Enlightened Strike and Art of War represent any of these three deities we’ve been presented with or if they are a part of a grander pantheon that we’ll continue to explore in the future.
At the very least, I look forward to seeing the chariot-riding Badr and Asra on card art soon.
We receive one more legend in the article:
Legend of the Guardians
Long ago, when the land of Aria was surrounded by war and strife, its people were protected by the Guardians. The Guardians were blessed with a connection to an elemental, gifting them with extraordinary abilities. Through years of training, they learned to hone their abilities and transform into incredible warriors, blessed with supernatural strength and elemental skills. The Flow shaped them, molding them into the perfect protector, tasked with guarding their people and their home.
However, as Aria entered an era of peace, and the elementals began to fade away, the ancient tradition of the Guardians disappeared along with them. Now, as their barrier between Aria and the rest of the world begins to fade, the Guardians are re-emerging, tasked with guarding Aria once more.Fabtcg.com
Another Guardian classed hero would be welcome with open arms by me. Especially, as this legend notes, if they would be flavored by powerful elemental skills. Since they are “re-emerging” I do wonder if we’ll only receive a young Guardian as a rare entry for future constructed Blitz events.
The final pieces from the article are about some of the awesome creatures of Aria. I invite you to read about them yourself. Personally, I have to wonder if the creature from Tome of Fyendal’s art is a meep, but I can’t make out a tail. Either way, I’m sure these creatures will appear in the upcoming set even if they only grace us with their presence on the wonderful card art on Tales of Aria.
I am beyond excited to be going to the Las Vegas Calling event. On Friday, we’ll have the great opportunity to crack some 1st edition packs of Aria and compete in a sealed event with the new heroes. I’ll be covering as much of the event on this platform as I can.
Feel free to let me know what kind of content you’d be excited to check out!
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