Welcome to the first of our introductory articles on the individual parts of Legion: Champions of Valdyria! In this series, we plan to delve into the various card types and deeper gameplay present in the game. For today, we will focus on the most important part of every deck, the Champion and the army of characters that serve them.
Legion is a game about opposing armies clashing on the field of battle, with constant formation changes and soldiers who join your ranks to serve your cause. The rules are clear: if your Champion is defeated (or if you no longer control one) then the opponent wins. A breakdown of the game can be found in the Rules section, but for now let’s take a closer look at the parts of a given Champion card and discuss the importance of player choice in constructing a deck around one.
Champions are a special type of character card. Your victory hinges on their success, and building a deck that compliments the individual play-style of a Champion is key. Choosing one is a matter of player preference, since every character in the game is broken down by faction, class and level. The variety of play-styles is expanded even further with the presence of multi-class cards. In this case, we will discuss The Duke of Loria, a Champion of the Descendant faction who encapsulates the military might of the Descendant Empire as a level 5 Fighter.
Abilities & Keywords
Many characters compliment their innate stats with some form of special ability (usable once per round unless stated otherwise). The Duke of Loria is a master of close range combat, leveraging his immense battlefield experience to brutally crush enemies in range of his melee attacks while deflecting any ranged strikes that would end the life of a less experienced warrior.
Due to the fierce loyalty among characters within each faction, the characters included in your deck must either be Neutral or share the faction of your Champion (details of each factions can be found within the Factions section). As mentioned, The Duke of Loria is a Descendant Champion, which means all characters in your deck must be either Neutral or Descendant. Some Champions may be able to bend the will of characters outside of their faction as part of a special ability, but The Duke’s resolve is absolute and all those who serve him must pledge their full loyalty to the Empire.
Class & Level
A character’s class determines the types of Events and Items they may utilize, and gives a clear picture of what style of war they wage. Some cards may not have any class, which is indicated by an empty box where the class would normally be. As a Fighter, the Duke of Loria dedicates the majority of his resources to overpowering melee attack and cards that help him to further Obliterate his enemies in a single blow. He is able to play Classless and Fighter Events up to level 5, and Items based on his level combined with his current rank. More often than not, fighters will have an edge in contests of raw strength.
For non-Champion characters, their level also indicates which rank of your army the character enters into. It is important to balance your characters’ levels around the play-style of that particular deck, as a higher level character may have a difficult time joining the fray if your entire army rushes to the front rank in an all out attack.
Above a character’s name is their attack ability. Some characters only have one type of attack, and that is indicated by the color of the attack type and the icon present next to the strike bonuses. The Duke only has the ability to perform a melee attack (two strikes in this case) without the aid of additional Event or Item effects.
Some effects may grant a bonus to a characters stats, but most effects disappear at the end of the round. To truly prepare for war, characters need to utilize Items, which provide a constant bonus to their stats as long as they remains attached.
Hit Points (HP)
Although Armor determines resistance to strikes, a character’s Hit Points determine how much damage they can handle before finally succumbing to their injuries. Each successful strike against a character inflicts a wound, and once a character has wounds equal or greater than their HP, they are killed and sent to the discard pile.
Another aspect of a character’s base combat ability is their Armor, which determines their resistance to an attack and the ability to avoid damage by strikes against them. As with most character stats, the base armor icon in the upper right corner can be further modified by Events and Items. Many of the Fighter items, such as Puresteel Helm, are geared towards adding additional durability needed to charge into the front lines of a war.
The final part of a character card is their Skill bonus. Though it isn’t immediately apparent, Skill plays a big part in the game of Legion. As in many tabletop RPG, a character’s Skill is their ability to solve problems, perform specialized tasks, or succeed at tremendous feats of strength and agility. The Duke of Loria’s skill at applying brutally aggressive front-line attacks is reflected in his ability to perform both the Powerattack and Ride feats. In some cases, having enough of a particular skill bonus can help to unlock the full potential of an item, such as Copperfang Hammer.
More often then not, a Fighter will display the lowest skill bonuses as their primary focus is on the battle at hand, leaving little attention for anything else. Wizards on the other hand will often display high levels of skill to compensate for their lack of brute strength.