With the Ultimate Wilderness Deck, Your Power Will Be Mushrooming

Thursday, August 9, 2018

Hello! We just came back from a highly successful Gen Con, where we showed off the newest stuff for the Pathfinder Adventure Card Game, including the debut of the Ultimate Wilderness Add-On Deck. It falls to me to guide you through the wonders therein, and I'm thrilled to do so, because it allows me to talk about mushrooms.

Yes, mushrooms! The fleshiest, most spore-bearing fruiting body of a fungus you'll find in the moistest, least welcoming shadows of the forest. I get to tell you all about them, because I'm a fun guy. (See, if anyone else on my team had volunteered to do this blog, they could have stopped me from making that joke.) [Vic: So very, very tempted to delete that, but Erik Mona says not to stand between a man and his puns... much.]

The reason the subject of mushrooms is so fond to me is that there is an epochal divide on the PACG design team. There is one group (headed by me, Liz, and Paul) that believes mushrooms are the best! And there is another (headed by Chad, Gaby, and Tanis) that believes mushrooms are the actual devil. (Keith pretends to split the difference, but we all know he's just placating us mushroom enthusiasts.) So those of us who love mushrooms relish any opportunity to wax poetical about squishy, fleshy mushrooms in front of the others.

So I shall! The Ultimate Wilderness Deck is filled with them. Here are three.

The delight of mycophagists everywhere.

Let's address the elephant ear mushroom in the room first: The trait PLANT is not quite accurate, since everyone knows mushrooms aren't plants. But we needed things that worked on Plants to affect these cards, so we ignored the biological distinction. I figure everyone in Golarion thinks mushrooms are plants, even the ones that shriek all the time.

Once you get past that, you'll love that the deck is filled with tons of Plants, all of which have that great kicker on the bottom of the card. Basically, these plants don't count as in your hand when you set your hand size. So you can have a whole lot of them. They grow, you see.

There are also some Plant allies as well.

Feed me, Seymour!

Of course, we also loaded the deck up with Animal allies and things that affect them.

You are not going to argue with a person who befriends Vampire Squids.

As well as all sorts of other cards that affect Animals.

There are blessings for Halflings and Gnomes too.

And if you like having animals around, why not turn into them? We have nine new spells of the aspect type we introduced in the Hunter Class Deck. The aspects are the first spells to have the Animal trait. They're kinda creepy looking, but in a good way.

Mostly in a good way.

You know who likes all this stuff? Zova, the iconic shifter. The shifter is straight out of Pathfinder RPG Ultimate Wilderness, and Zova has been a favorite of ours since the R&D team started cooking her up. We started designing this deck before the RPG rules were finished, then reconciled things as the shifter... well, took shape, as it were.

Nice claws.

I'd like to call your attention to Zova's hand size. It's the first hand size line with text in it, because Zova has the spell Shapechange hardwired into her character. Every turn, you can pick your hand size from three (or even five!) options. No more dying because you drew too many cards, maybe ever.

Then when you get good at playing with a variable hand size, you can either blow everything up with Fire and Acid, or just be a lycanthrope.

That flavor text for Elemental Shifter is how we talk about the weather in Seattle.

The Ultimate Wilderness Add-On Deck is the shiftiest deck we've ever made, and we're thrilled to end the Ultimate series with it. Now we're taking a break from class decks to focus everything on the new Core Set and Curse of the Crimson Throne. Thanks for letting us put out 27 decks in the Class Deck and Add-On lines. We hope to make more someday! For now, enjoy Ultimate Wilderness!

Mike Selinker
Lead Designer, Adventure Card Game

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Tags: Pathfinder Adventure Card Game Ultimate Decks

Pathfinder Card Game, Class Deck Subscriber

Yes, Zova definitely has an odd hand size. ;)

This was a fun deck to go through. There are so many interesting ways to augment wilderness-oriented characters.


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I am happy to see that the team is able to infuse the card gameplay with loads of interesting, new ideas. Replaying existing adventures with new characters and boons will help me bide my time until new adventures are released (in 2019...right?).


Pathfinder Class Deck Subscriber

I look forward to this pack with a keen interest!


Interesting; the Weretouched ability to manipulate the top card of the blessings discard pile makes it very easy to get infinite turns with WotR's Imrijka (Wandering Judge role). In Mummy's Mask it's particularly notable because of the reveal power for Blessing of Wadjet, but even with the tiniest amount of repeatable healing it's pretty trivial to turn every blessing of Imrijka's into a free bonus turn for the party with Zova's assistance.

I love Zova's design, though; it's probably a bit more extravagant than I expected, which is something of a relief. I've sometimes felt like there's an enormous overlap in design spaces across the 16 Hunters/Druids/Rangers out there, and I love this almost "Monk-meets-kineticist-meets-hunter" style of design.

Vampire Squid disappointed me somewhat by the standards of a deck 4 ally, but that's largely because I've been spoiled by the deck B Hyaenodon from Mummy's Mask.


Pathfinder Card Game, Class Deck Subscriber

This is making a great addition to my Ukuja build! There's definitely some good cards in here that make this worthwhile. I'm also intrigued to give Zova a go sometime. In general I enjoy versatility and she can offer quite a bit of that.

Thanks for putting together the Ultimate decks! Can't wait to see what comes next!


Pathfinder Battles Case Subscriber; Pathfinder Card Game, Class Deck Subscriber

Fun fact: the JPG image for "Blue Star" is actually called "Cloud Puff". Wonder if Mike and the others changed their minds on a card at some point or if there is some inside joke (in which case I lack the local culture to get it).

I didn't find the "Aspect of the Puff" in my deck though, I guess I'm missing a promo card :-).


Pathfinder Battles Case Subscriber; Pathfinder Card Game, Class Deck Subscriber
Mike wrote:
That flavor text for Elemental Shifter is how we talk about the weather in Seattle.

As I'm heading to St-Malo (Brittany, France, Over the Pond) for vacations, I'd like to add the local way we talk about the weather here:

Asterix wrote:
It's always sunny and warm in St-Malo, at least 10 times a day.


Pathfinder Card Game, Starfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber

This has some interesting cards for various other Hunter/Ranger/Druid characters and builds, but now I'm intrigued to try a completely plant/mushroom-themed character as well.

Ok, so it did bother me that mushrooms are referred to as plants, but I can accept the abstraction for the sake of the game. ;)


Pathfinder Card Game Subscriber

There are definitely some interesting cards in this one. It would be a great deck to mix into a regular game if someone was playing Gronk from the Druid Class Deck (I'm not sure any of the Animal or Plant cards have Strength or Constitution checks against them other than the checks to acquire, so that plant/animal power of his wouldn't seem to apply with this deck very much in organized play).

I think this might be the most one of the most "different" set of cards in a deck yet, though all the ultimate have been absolutely excellent. The aspects are really interesting. I'm really wondering if the Aspect of the Tiger has a recharge check for a reason other than corner case proofing.

I'm still reading through the cards, but it all looks very exciting.


Hawkmoon269 wrote:
The aspects are really interesting. I'm really wondering if the Aspect of the Tiger has a recharge check for a reason other than corner case proofing.

I can think of at least two cases in which it matters; Seltyiel (S&S) and Amaryllis (Sorcerer Class Deck) can attempts checks to recharge spells in their discard pile, so it allows you to discard it to damage (or to an effect or by choice) and recharge it later.

...Okay, so not great examples, because neither of those characters have Divine magic, but nothing a little Glamour can't fix! I'm glad to see the recharge check, anyway, due to corner cases like that.


Another edge case: do dead characters have skills? Displayed cards aren't affected by death and a dead character "cannot ... do anything or affect anything", so I'd assume that any displayed cards with a pending "banish unless..." effect are banished at the end of the game.


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Pathfinder Adventure Path, Campaign Setting, Card Game Subscriber; Starfinder Charter Superscriber

At last! I can add these mushrooms to my Badger and Snake allies, for some older meme goodness.

Paizo Employee Chief Technical Officer

Frencois wrote:
Fun fact: the JPG image for "Blue Star" is actually called "Cloud Puff". Wonder if Mike and the others changed their minds on a card at some point or if there is some inside joke (in which case I lack the local culture to get it).

That image is supposed to be of the card Cloud Puff. (Blue Star happens to be the card that appears immediately before Cloud Puff in the deck.) I've asked for this to be fixed next week.


Hawkmoon269 wrote:
It would be a great deck to mix into a regular game if someone was playing Gronk from the Druid Class Deck...

Funny, I'm considering Gronk for my next OP character. I'm assuming that the next organized play Season is based on Shackles, for which Gronk is perfect because there are so many animals/plants in that set.

I was thinking of using Ultimate Equipment, though, since there's the blessing that lets Gronk search for a weapon and an ally that lets Gronk rearrange the top 5 cards of his character deck (again, to search for a weapon or anything else useful). Plus the Sacred Candle.

And with his 1d4+2 self-healing after role selection (eventually 1d4+4) Gronk seems nigh-unkillable.

But none of that takes away from the fact that Ultimate Wilderness seems like a really cool deck. :)

Lone Shark Games

Vic Wertz wrote:
Frencois wrote:
Fun fact: the JPG image for "Blue Star" is actually called "Cloud Puff". Wonder if Mike and the others changed their minds on a card at some point or if there is some inside joke (in which case I lack the local culture to get it).
That image is supposed to be of the card Cloud Puff. (Blue Star happens to be the card that appears immediately before Cloud Puff in the deck.) I've asked for this to be fixed next week.

Then I guess you get a preview of Blue Star as well.


Pathfinder Battles Case Subscriber; Pathfinder Card Game, Class Deck Subscriber

Héhé


I've also been looking for a fun Ultimate deck to play with Nyctessa.

Nyctessa + a forest-load of plant cards could be fun. She may be the only character who can consistently handle a 10-13 card hand size.

Lone Shark Games

I did test it out with Occult Adventures Mavaro, for something different, and it worked out pretty awesomely.


Yeah OA Mavaro is pretty ridiculous with the Wilderness deck.

Alchemists can use it as well.

It also contains the only Arcane healing spell you can carry that isn't a Goblin deck: Cauterize.

Lastly, I do have to note that mushrooms aren't plants. Unless they are in Golarion somehow.


Yikes. Can't unsee Aspect of the Frog.


Aspect of the Frog and Aspect of the Monkey are discarded at the end of turn, but Aspect of the Tiger ends at the end of the scenario?! Is that purposeful or a typo?


filch133 wrote:
Aspect of the Frog and Aspect of the Monkey are discarded at the end of turn, but Aspect of the Tiger ends at the end of the scenario?! Is that purposeful or a typo?

Intentional. Most aspects are turn-long, but some are not. Aspect of the Tiger would be a very unimpressive Deck 5 spell otherwise, in my opinion. As it is, its now more comparable to the end-game Shapechange spell from Wrath of the Righteous.

Scarab Sages

Pathfinder Card Game Subscriber
zeroth_hour2 wrote:
Yeah OA Mavaro is pretty ridiculous with the Wilderness deck.

OA Mavaro is pretty ridiculous with just about anything. I am starting to think he's the most powerful character of all time. OF AWL TAYIMMM!

Silver Crusade RPG Superstar 2014 Top 16

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