Recap: Skirmish Season Three, Week Two

27th Nov 2021 Legend Story Studios

Welcome to week two of Skirmish Season 3. Kano, Briar and Ira, the big three of Blitz are still setting the pace for the metagame as far as top 8 results go however, Dorinthea has picked up the most first place finishes over the last week’s Blitz action clocking in at four wins! Following hot on her bolters are Kano, Ira, Briar and Oldhim at three wins each. Rounding out the first place finishes we see both Chane and Rhinar on one win each.

When observing last week’s results in clusters of most Top 8 appearances made including victories our heroes fall into four groups.

The first group sees Ira with 17 top 8s, Kano with 20 and Briar with 26 top 8 appearances. These three heroes are super successful as they do what they do better than other heroes are doing it at this stage in the season and have incredibly high power ceilings. They boast great matchups across the field and demand that other decks step up or get left in the dust.

Ira controls the pace of the game with constant pressure from Harmonized Kodachi for 1 then 2 followed by a strong red line attack action most turns, defending well and making the most of each and every resource. Kano plays the game on his own terms, dealing damage almost exclusively in the form of arcane damage from non-attack action cards. Kano’s hero ability can make for some spectacular displays of damage as, often when Kano is staring down a lethal attack coming his way, he’ll use his hero ability to play non-attack actions at instant speed, effectively having two turns in a row and turning the opponent to ash before lethal ever comes. Briar is the fastest aggro deck Flesh and Blood has seen to date with almost all cards costing 0 and attacking multiple times per turn. Briar has her counters largely in the form of Oldhim and Ice Lexi, yet Briar’s blistering pace and hyper economical use of resources make the Elemental Runeblade tricky to catch through the thickest of blizzards.

The second group of heroes are the pack chasing the big three, playing disruptive and controlling roles, attempting to counter Ira, Kano and Briar with Ice or aggression or in Dorinthea’s case being the beatdown, aiming to become a bigger threat, faster, through the raw power of Dawnblade. Oldhim saw 11 top 8s, Dorinthea 9 and Lexi usually in Ice form came in with seven top 8 appearances over the last seven days.

Ice Lexi and Oldhim have seen increases in both popularity and success in top 8s over the last week, attacking both, resource hungry heroes and heroes who rely on every resource lining up perfectly to execute a delicate resource light aggressive strategy where it hurts, through the power of Frostbite. Whether it’s Lexi throwing arrow after arrow at an opponent, applying constant pressure and firing off obscene amounts of arrows in massive Three of a Kind turns or Oldhim slowing things down and defending diligently through his suite of defense reactions and incredible damage preventing and hand disrupting hero power defense reaction abilities while relentlessly crushing the opponent with Oaken Old, Endless Winter and Glacial Footsteps, these two Essence of Ice Elemental heroes are stepping it up and slowing things down this Blitz Skirmish Season!

Original warriors around the world have united and put Dorinthea very much in the mix of top Blitz heroes for Skirmish Season 3! Dorinthea’s Dawnblade demands defending. She has reasonable matchups across the board and can play the aggressor role very well. With many players adopting a Driving Blade approach rather than going all in on reprise in an environment where the most popular deck, Briar barely defends at all, the threat of an ever growing Dawnblade seems to be making enough of an impact to see some big changes at the top of the meta. Prioritising Dawnblade getting an attack pump before attacking demands aggressive decks and any player wanting to sculpt a specific hand interact or see counter after counter be added to Dawnblade.

In the third group of heroes, Chane saw five top 8 finishes, Rhinar 4 and a surprise to many, Levia made three appearances in Blitz Skirmish top 8s over the weekend.

Chane has been doing well despite not being the premier aggro deck of the format. Players have been experimenting with Duskblade in slower builds to some success however Rosetta Thorn builds featuring Flock of the Feather Walkers and ever an increasing Soul Shackle count allowing the player to gain more and more card advantage as the game goes on provides Runeblade players with an alternative to a fully committed zero cost aggro strategy while allowing for more flexibility in deckbuilding and providing the pilot with more lines to take and ways to keep the opponent guessing. Chane is a fantastic choice in the current Blitz environment providing a two pronged attack of physical and arcane damage and piling on the pressure.

Rhinar has seen an increase in success in Classic Constructed and it looks like some of that has spilled over into Blitz! Rhinar can attack a control style deck in ways that force the opponent to defend with cards essential to their delicate strategy, messing up their plans by simply playing to his own strengths. Rhinar’s intimidate keyword creates huge problems for slower decks and even more so for Elemental decks looking to fuse or decks looking to perform specific sequences each turn. Versus aggressive decks Rhinar plays more of a control style, defending heavily and maintaining a high life total, with the occasional burst damage turns thanks to one of Flesh and Blood’s most powerful cards ever printed, Bloodrush Bellow. With a broad suite of red line defense reactions and Brute’s Reckless Swing combined with Sigil of Solace and Tome of Fyendal for some life gain, Rhinar can be a very flexible hero and has reasonably balanced matchups across the board. Rhinar seems like a great pick at this stage of the season, so stay tuned to see what rampage is next for the reckless one.

Levia has been making her mysterious presence known in no fewer than three top 8s over the weekend. Both a deckbuilder’s dream and a number crunching nightmare, Levia has had Flesh and Blood fans scratching their heads since her release in Monarch as to how to build this abomination. Levia has been known to fall somewhere in between the realm of aggressive deck, control deck and set up deck. I know..that doesn’t narrow it down much yet, her legion of fans between heaven and hell have been putting in the work, paying their blood debt and putting the Shadow Brute in top 8s. Most Levia decks sleeve up a good number of Dread Screamer, Bloodrush Bellow and more often than not a pair of Mandible Claws, aiming to defend well and hit hard, usually overwhelming the opponent with two or three attacks of six or more followed up by the always welcome presence of Blasmophet, the Soul Harvester summoned via Doomsday after chipping away at the opponent’s life total with claw attacks. If you’re up for a challenge and don’t mind making a deal with the devil, Levia could be the light in the darkness you’ve been looking for.

The final group of heroes consists of Kayo, Kassai and Azalea each making a top 8 appearance last weekend. These three might not be names often seen in top 8s but you gotta start somewhere! It’s incredible seeing such fan favorite and not so synonymous with victory heroes making themselves known at the top tables. A remorseless act of rebellion or are these heroes ready to seek and destroy all who stand in their way?

The Blitz metagame certainly has a few big dogs at the top but there is plenty of room to move. If you’re heading to a Blitz Skirmish, make sure you’re prepared for quick opponents, wear your best arcane barrier fit and are ready for anything and anyone! The Skirmish Season 3 Blitz environment is dangerous, diverse and definitively dynamic.

Logo Friends and foes Amsterdam

Friends & Foes - Amsterdam

"The winter weather descends on Amsterdam as players wander lost through the streets looking for a warm place to play Flesh and Blood. Restrictions closed the taverns and warriors lost their weekly Armory brawls. But in the chilling cold they found a big arena where they could descend to, to fight ones more while they waited for the winter weather to withdraw and the beautiful spring sun to return.

16 players gathered to enter Aria and fight it out in a big draft event. Each player played two drafts of three rounds each after which a top 8 cut was made. After 6 rounds the most strong players were able to fight it out in one more draft and fight for that desired Razor Reflex playmat.

The semi finals:

Lexi (Nathan Eastwood) fought aggressively and hard to get through Oldhim (Mariusz Wojciechowski). Firing arrow after arrow to get through Oldhim's Armor. But while she reduced him to just 2 health Lexi ran out of ammunition and couldn't finish as she ran out of stamina and her deck was depleted giving Oldhim the win.

Oldhim (Sander Neeft) fought Oldhim (Erik Baalhuis). Two men strong to the bitter end. The battle seemed to take ages as they entered a stalemate. Seasons changed and the world around them moved on as both stood on the mountain pass not letting the other one through.

It was Sander who took the bolt move to take a hit in the face to find an opening to push damage through. Unfortunately Erik prepared for this moment blocking Sander’s counter attack. Summoning the mountain twice to aid him with Glacial Footsteps and crushing Sander’s Oldhim into the ground.

The finals:

Good old saint Oldhim (Mariusz Wojciechowski) was fighting Good old saint Oldhim (Erik Baalhuis) to see who was allowed to bring presents to Rathe this Solmas. Both called upon the power of earth to trample the other into a pulp. Both fought hard but both could not get through the other's hard Armor.

In the end it was Erik who by harnessing some earthlore surge's could thump through the enemies defences and get the victory, making him the ultimate Saint Oldhim and winning the Razor Reflex playmat.

So warriors of Rathe if you wake up this Solmas and find some presents just remember who brought them there. The one true Saint Oldhim Erik Baalhuis.

Top 8:

1st: Erik Baalhuis - Oldhim
2nd: Mariusz Wojciechowski - Oldhim
3rd-4th: Nathan Eastwood - Lexi
3rd-4th: Sander Neeft - Oldhim
5th-8th: Tom Kersten - Briar
5th-8th: Sebastiaan Knetsch - Lexi
5th-8th: Wouter Ouwehand - Briar
5th-8th: Aidan Wall - Lexi

Tactics Store Logo

Tactics - Australia

"As we were all so keen to play FAB a bunch of us rocked up early to Tactics. While we waited for the doors to open discussion turned to the Festive armoury kit and the Beautiful CF Bauble. Everyone was keen to grab one once they came out. But for today everyone only had eyes for the Razor Reflex Playmat.

Once the tables were set and the packs were distributed we began to draft in earnest. A couple of no shows meant the pods weren't at their usual 8, so reading signals, planning and wheeling required a bit more thinking, but everyone got a working deck in the end and no one required any cracked baubles. The 6 man pod ended up with 3 Briars, 2 Lexis and 1 Oldhim, and thanks to his wise drafting choice, the only Oldhim player, Josh, ended up sweeping to the top of the swiss rounds. Over in the pod of 7, Seth did well on an ice Voltaire build. With the Voltaire passing through 4 people in the pod, a lot of people ended up regretting not hate drafting it as they became frozen solid under all the frostbites and on hit effects. Both Oldhim's also made it through despite being sat next to each other in the draft and completely missing the signals.

Once the participation and door prizes had been given out, the Top8 sat down to draft, with a lot of groaning and pivoting mid pack 1, not everyone got a perfect deck, but the spread was fairly even - 3 Lexi, 3 Briar, 2 Oldhim. Once again ending up in a hero that wasn't oversubscribed meant both Oldhims made it through the first elimination round, along with a Briar and a Lexi. Jordan (Oldhim) and Ruri (Briar), beat their respective semi-final opponents to set up a great final with both players on their favourite class. Jordan was able to hold out through all the arcane damage coming in from Ruri to close out a tight finish and take home the Razor Reflex playmat."

Top 8:

1st: Jordan Kassiotis - Oldhim
Ruairidh Wasson - Briar
Joshua Simpson - Oldhim
Seth Andrews - Lexi
Gavin Chappell - Briar
Adam Parker - Lexi
Callum Jarvis - Lexi
Yousef Mnahy - Briar

Quick Questions with Tactics Skirmish Finalist Ruairidh Wasson

What was the best card in your deck today?
Bramble Spark

What is the best card in the format?
Possibly Mark of Lightning

What is the best deck deck in the format?
I wouldn't say there really is one, it really depends on the ability to draft with what you see and adapt.

What card do you most want to see pack 1, pick 1?
Winters Wail

What is your favorite Tales of Aria hero to draft?
Probably Oldhim

What card from Tales of Aria do you think is going to make the biggest impact on Classic Constructed?
Either Crown of Seeds or Rampart, they breed a new guardian playstyle that can switch up between defensive deckout  and swinging at you for 10 a turn if you give them even an inch.

What is your favorite FAB card?
Go Bananas

What is your favorite FAB set so far?
Crucible of War

What part of Rathe would you most like to visit next?
The Pits

Who is the best Runeblade (Viserai / Chane / Briar)?
Strongest, probably Briar, but my favourite is Chane

Are you Earth, Ice, or Lightning?

Unison Games Cafe Logo

Unison Games Cafe - United States

Hero Breakdown

Briar Lexi Oldhim
Draft One 8 5 6
Draft Two 10 4 5
Top 8 5 1 2

Quick Questions

Russell Meister S3

Player: Russell Meister (Brew Tap Cast youtube channel)

In your opinion, who is the Strongest Hero in Tales of Aria Draft?

Russell: "If people drop their preconceived notions on Briar, Oldhim. I think Oldhim is well positioned with damage prevention, defense reactions and big swings like Glacial Footsteps."

What card do you you want to see pack 1 pick 1?

Russell: "I feel comfortable drafting Earth as a CC Bravo player so I'd love to see Red Earthlore surge. My pick may change if I was more confident with my Lexi play."

Vida Ward

Player: Vida Ward (8 years old!)

This isn't your first draft Vida, who is your favorite hero?

Vida: "My favorite is Oldhim because he has a 10 damage attack (Red Glacial Footsteps). It's so cool to use it with 2 blue cards. It's cray cray damage"

What card do you want to see pack 1 pick 1?

Vida: "A Legendary or Majestic. I got Phantasmal Footsteps from Monarch!"

Michael Feng Skirmish S3

Player: Michael (Shuo) Feng (The Calling: Cincinnati Champion)

Which set in Flesh and Blood is your favorite?

Michael: "Tales of Aria because of draft. It's my favorite format. Arcane rising was tough Monarch was OK, but seemed to lack depth."

What card do you want to see pack 1 pick 1?

Michael: "Heart of Ice, but for a Rare Turn Timber and common Blue Autumn's Touch"

Michael Zibbideo S3.png

Player: Michael Zibbideo

What do you hope for from Everfest?

Michael Z: "Oh what a great question. I'd like to see new Wizard and Illusionist cards and Skullcap! I love to play these heroes, but would like to see more diversity in their strategy"

What card do you want to see pack 1 pick 1?

Michael Z: " Deep Blue if no legendary or the Fable!"

Home-run - Hong Kong

"We're Home-run FABulous card shop from Hong Kong, we just held our Skirmish BLITZ event on the 20th with 32 players.

Among this 32 players, including Kelvin Law, who ranked #1 in FAB XP both 90 days and lifetime, and also a combination of local top players and new players from our own rookie program.

The Top 2 players are relatively new too, just started a few months ago and often practice in our shop. They were so excited to reach the final match of this Skirmish event. The games were very close, but Oscar finally won the event with Rhinar, with Leo Chan and Dorinthea is first runner-up."

Azalea Prism Oldhim Rhinar Dorinthea Kano Dash Briar Ira Lexi
Player Count 1 1 3 2 4 4 1 9 5 1

Top 8:

1st: Oscar Lo - Rhinar
2nd: Leo Chan - Dorinthea
3rd-4th: Eugene Chung - Ira, Crimson Haze
3rd-4th: Ray Lam - Briar
5th-8th: Kelvin Law - Kano
5th-8th: Cliff Wong - Kano
5th-8th: Cho Chiu Sit - Dorinthea
5th-8th: A Man Hung - Briar

Chimera Gaming - Canada

"Oldhim and Briar were the decks that stood out in the event with Oldhim being most dominant, securing 3 of the top 4 spots. The winning factor was the one and only Briar player, Nghia Tran, with a Duskblade which he very easily beat all of his Oldhim opponents including his finals opponent John Walker in the finals."

Born 2 Game Logo

Born 2 Game - United States

Top 8:

1st: Danny McGeehan - Oldhim
2nd: James Chang - Lexi
3rd-4th: Don Gallitz - Briar
3rd-4th: John Horstkamp - Briar
5th-8th: Kurt Toth - Oldhim
5th-8th: Gary Fortenberry - Lexi
5th-8th: Sam Ditmore - Briar
5th-8th: Mason Murray - Oldhim

Quick Questions

Kurth Toth

Q: What is your favorite FAB set so far?
Q: Are you Earth, Ice, or Lightning?

James Chang

Q: What is the best card in your deck today?
Q: Who is the best Runeblade (Viserai / Chane / Briar)?

Don Gallitz

Q: What was the best card in your deck today?
Sutcliffe's Suede Hides
Q: What is your favourite FAB card?
Fyendal's Spring Tunic

Danny McGeehan

Q: What is your favorite Tales of Aria hero to draft?
Q: Are you Earth, Ice, or Lightning?

Gary Fortenberry

Q: What is your favorite FAB set so far?
Tales of Aria
Q: What was the best card in your deck today?
Red Lightning Press

Mason Murray

Q: What is your favorite Tales of Aria hero to draft?
Q: What is your favorite FAB set so far?
Tales of Aria

John Horstkamp

Q: Who is the best Runeblade (Viserai / Chane / Briar)?
Q: What is your favorite FAB set so far?
Crucible of War

Sam Ditmore

Q: What is your favourite FAB set so far?
Tales of Aria
Q: Are you Earth, Ice, or Lightning?

Good Times Games - Canada

"We had 16 registered players. I had three more that wanted to play and then two of my registered players got called into work so I could have easily let two of the three in!

But we were all very happy with this, and as such I sat out and administered play for everyone in the event.

Our Champion Ryan Last won his round game in all three rounds with just 1 life point left. I have to say this was the closest event we have had to date here with our casual, not overly competitive crowd."

Dorinthea Kano Katsu Rhinar Oldhim Lexi Briar Bravo Chane
Player Count 3 3 2 2 2 2 2 1 1

Top 8:

1st: Mark Bradshaw - Dorinthea
2nd: Corbin Cartwright - Chane
3rd-4th: Cedar Graham - Kano
3rd-4th: Michael Rose - Dorinthea
5th-8th: Philip "Reed" Parker - Katsu
5th-8th: Tyler Tedder - Rhinar
5th-8th: Matt Cole - Rhinar
5th-8th: Dylan Mangini - Briar

Sapphire Cards Logo

Sapphire Cards - Germany

"We had to limit the max players because of guidelines, and three players couldn't attend, but we had a great event, starting with 13 players and 2 draft pods. We drafted 5 Oldhims, 6 Briars and 2 Lexi before Top 8 Cut. Top 8 Draft was 2 Oldhim, 3 Lexi and 2 Briar."

Top 8:

1st: Sebastian Feick
2nd: Tim Sofsky
3rd-4th: Frank Buechy
3rd-4th: Maximilian Klein
5th-8th: Florian Kirsch
5th-8th: Lukas Weber
5th-8th: Dean Ebelshäuser
5th-8th: Hagen Lindhert

De Dobbelsteen Tilburg Logo

De Dobbelsteen Tilburg - Netherlands

Hero Breakdown

Briar Ira Kano Dorinthea Kassai Katsu Rhinar Oldhim Chane
Player Count 5 4 2 2 2 1 1 1 1

Top 8:

1st: Freek Zwart - Briar
Beau Franz - Ira, Crimson Haze
Donovan van Beek - Briar
Kevin Raaijmakers - Kano
Yael Belder - Dorinthea
Jimmy Nguyen - Ira, Crimson Haze
Jonathan Antoine - Dorinthea
Ian Zhang - Kano

Azkaban Juegos

Azkaban Juegos - Spain

"As a special note of the tournament, the winner, Adrian, made a video blog on how to draft and build a deck in the draft format for Skirmish on the channel of another local player and content creator Álvaro Toledano."

Top 8:

1st: Adrián Ruiz Yague - Briar
Pablo Tobías - Oldhim
Pablo Pintor - Oldhim
Sr. Clenyu - Oldhim
Gustavo Caperán- Briar
Sergio Sanz Guerrero - Lexi
Guillermo Pedernal - Lexi
Eduardo Sanchez Lopez - Briar

Gamers Haven - United States

"We had 24 people participate in our Draft skirmish this season with our meta breakdown by draft being; Draft 1: 9 Oldhim, 10 Briar, and 5 Lexi. Draft 2: 8 Oldhim, 8 Lexi, and 8 Briar."

Top 8:

1st: Maximillian Zart - Oldhim
2nd: Ciro Gambone - Briar
3rd-4th: Sam Claybourne - Briar
3rd-4th: Brandon Ritchie - Oldhim
5th-8th: Alex Becker - Lexi
5th-8th: Dan Groseclose - Briar
5th-8th: Bryce Johnson - Oldhim
5th-8th: James Adams - Lexi

Lucky Dice Cafe - United States

Briar Bravo Chane Dash Dorinthea Ira Kano Kassai Lexi Oldhim
Player Count 4 2 1 1 3 2 2 1 1 1

Top 8:

1st: Nathan Crawford- Briar
2nd: Joshua Lau - Dorinthea
3rd-4th: Quoc Vuong- Kano
3rd-4th: Noah Geiger- Kano
5th-8th: John Beckman - Briar
5th-8th: Adam Mercier- Kassai
5th-8th: Edward Knight - Bravo
5th-8th: Jenson Wilhelm - Ira

Total Access Games - United States

"Last Saturday we hosted our Blitz Skirmish event for 22 players.  After 5 rounds our top 8 players consisted of two Kano, two Dorinthea, three Briar, and one Oldhim.

The finals came down to a showdown of 2 local players, Addison Hudson on Dori and Josh Netto playing Briar. During round 3 Josh made an amazing call to go to 1 health to try and steal tempo away from Dori who was sitting at 13 health. He then applied enough pressure to force Addison to use his entire hand to block out. From there he kept consistent pressure to win the game."

Notorious Collectibles - United States

"The players pulled a couple of good cards from the event, but one pulled the Fabled card for the set - Unlimited Rainbow Foil, Korshem, Crossroad of Elements. We also gave an additional prize to the winner - Unlimited Rainbow Foil Great Library of Solana."

Top 2:

1st: Jeremy Martin - Lexi
2nd: Noah Geiger - Briar

Invaders Board Game Station Logo

Invaders Board Game Station - Indonesia

"On Saturday, November 20th, we hosted a Blitz Skirmish event offline in our store. It was a flurry of aether and silver here at Invaders with Kano and Dorinthea as the two most popular heroes! At the end of the event, we hold the raffle for the 2nd Razor Reflex playmat, which was won by Luke.

Once again thank you for the chance and hopefully with this, the Flesh and Blood scene in Indonesia can grow bigger! We are looking forward to the next events! (Looking at you, Festive Cracked Baubles.)"

Top 8:

1st: Junio Antono - Dorinthea
2nd: Gian Arnandi - Ira, Crimson Haze
3rd-4th: Luke Soekwanto - Kano
3rd-4th: Julio Anthony - Dorinthea
5th-8th: Natanael Avelino - Chane
5th-8th: Suryo Laksono - Rhinar
5th-8th: Dion Ngelow - Azalea
5th-8th: Adrian Samyudia - Kano

Event Winners

Player Photos

Event Highlights

Video Links

Skirmish Decklists