Arcane Weaver

Saolkam Citizens

Name: Unknown
AKA: None
Occupation: Arcane Weaver
Species: Araneoros
Gender: Asexual
Age: Unknown
Height: 6'2"
Faction: None
Loyalty: Unknown
Enemies: Dymaer Royals
Combat Method: Physical, Magical
Magics: Ninth Eye, Telepathy
Affiliations: None

About

It is a widely believed fact that the Dymaer Royals are corrupt and take advantage of their wealth and their people, but is often accepted grudgingly in exchange for the protection of the walls and the brave Navy. It is much less known, however, the sheer amount of dark secrets that the Dymaers keep from the rest of the city, including much of the leadership.

Arcane Weavers, members of a very foreign and undocumented race of psychic spider-like creatures, have been captured and held within the walls of the castle. These creatures are then forced into servitude for a variety of reasons, but chief among them would be to craft devices or imbue magics to be given to the District Captains or higher Royal Guards, containing the unique Ninth Eye powers; the power of information.

Rulings

  • Regardless of whether you are attacking or being attacked, you may play both your Combat and Skill cards after your Opponent.
  • If your Opponent is going to play a Preparation Strategy, they play it face up so you can see it, but it doesn't activate until you have placed your cards face down.
  • You may play and activate your Preparation Strategies after your Opponent has played their cards face-up.
  • If you both play Preparation Strategies, they will still both activate at the same time, they just play them face-up.

Design

The Weaver actually started off as a bearded and gruff looking smith (The Runesmith), who, using magical runes and smithing practices, crafted eyepieces for the District Captains to wear. After a lot of art was being redone, and his stats were overhauled, I felt he could do with a redesign, especially one that better fitted his nature of being trapped and hidden. We have a lot of anthropomorphics in the game, but also noticed a fair number were winged creatures, then a number of humans. I wanted to get something totally different in, to let the game show the idea that Saolkam was a city of diverse species, not just angry birds and angry humans, with the occasional frog. I looked up animals that build or create and found a lot of bugs and insects, but couldn't think of much to do with termites or ants. And then found the trapdoor spider and it all just fell into place.

As for the Weaver's ability, we came up with that first, wanting to try the idea of a Hero that broke the fundamental rule of the game that required bluffing and guessing, we wanted to try something that couldn't be surprised or tricked, and would always have one over on you. At first he was a 6/4/4, but playtesting showed that he was too weak in any fight, and his ability was essentially just predicting his own defeat every fight, which wasn't much fun for anyone, especially since he couldn't get any kills. This was also before the stat overhaul, when a lot more stats in the game were double digits.

One of our playtesters suggested flattening his stats out so he could respond to any threat, not just Body threats, and putting them just below the baseline, to continue ensuring the ability couldn't be abused, and that it required thought. It worked out perfectly we feel, and the stats haven't changed since. We have since noted that the Weaver is notably more scary in games with Advanced Strategies, but it's never quite felt broken yet, and is more just a testament to the power of the Ninth Eye magic....watch out!

Artwork