Howdy folks, and welcome to the Crystarium! We’ve got everyone’s favorite today, a spoiler! Today’s spoiler comes courtesy of Colin Harris, a valuable member of our community throughout the years and the representative for FFTCG in Australia.
For Standard, this allows Khalia Chival to search for a new element, making him able to serve as the base for Ice/Lightning (should you want that package over Reeve/Cait Sith) or for a Fire/Ice/Lightning deck. Seeing as we just got a whole slew of great Fire Ice and Lightning XIII cards, definitely something there to brew with, though it may be the case that XIII can’t fit that many non-XIII Backups in. Both her abilities have uses in Standard too. Her ETF serves as a minor Jihl Nabaat, and her Action lets her trigger Weiss, Byblos, and Orphan on demand (which may be a good reason to play her and Khalia over Reeve/Cait Sith). Oh and she makes Qun’mi a 7k and Kurasame 1CP cheaper. I’m sure you’re all as excited as I am for that thrilling bit of synergy. I’m not really a brewer so I’ll leave it to y’all to figure out if a searchable Backup with two decent but not stellar abilities will cut the mustard in Opus XIX Constructed. What I am here to do is talk about Tohno in the best format, Limited!
2CP is the gold standard for your developmental Backups. You’re never upset to pick up 2CP Backups, even if they don’t really have abilities. Tohno however has two very solid abilities. If you end up not playing her until your opponent has already committed Forwards, she can help slow down your opponent’s aggressive openings while developing your backline economy. The new Sephiroth is a natural combo with Tohno, a 6CP Backup with Back Attack that gets cheaper for every damage you’ve taken who breaks a dull Forward on entry. Tohno helps keep something frozen long enough to reactivate and help pay for Sephy. Between Sephiroth and cards like the new Sarah (MOBIUS) who can’t attack or block but has several strong Action Abilities, Ice looks like it will end up being glacially slow this set, so Tohno fits right in with Ice’s general gameplan. Slower decks tend to struggle against early aggression so a way to blunt that is a welcome ability to tack on to the Backups you’re looking to play towards the early game anyways.
Her second ability, forcing a discard, is also nice. It lacks the combo potential it has in Standard, as there are no discard triggers to enable, but it still puts in work. The closer to the end of the game you are, the less potential future use your Backups have. When you may only have one or two, or even zero more turns, the value you get from keeping a Backup around is greatly diminished. Cards like Tohno who have a way to cash themselves in for some tangible benefit help you close out a game. Say your opponent has 1 Backup open and 2 cards in hand, one happens to be an Ifrit and you strongly suspect it’s there. You can use Tohno, putting your opponent in a situation where they either need to commit to using the Ifrit before she resolves and more importantly before your Attack Phase, or discarding to keep the Ifrit around and locking themselves out of casting it for the rest of the turn. Maybe this lets you safely play a haster to deal the last point of damage. Another potential situation, perhaps your opponent searched for a high cost card last turn, and forcing a discard will leave them without the CP to cast it on their next turn. One of the new Sarah (MOBIUS)’s abilities it to cancel an Auto-Ability unless your opponent pays 2. If your opponent only has one card in hand, you can use Tohno to strip it, then use Sarah (MOBIUS) who is now guaranteed to cancel an Auto. At Common, its important to find ways to eke out every drop of value you can from Tohno, as she’ll be prevalent in packs.
Once again a big thank you to Colin Harris for giving me the opportunity to blather on about Limited. Tohno will be a part of many games of Sealed and Draft, and I look forward to seeing how people are able to best make use of her and her sweet hat. From Nightmares looks like it’s shaping up to be a great set with lots of intriguing synergies stuffed throughout it, and I’m excited to see what all we get. I love cards like this that have the potential to breathe new life into an old card like Khalia Chival. As ever, thank you for joining us, and we hope to see you again soon here at the Crystarium!