What's that you say? Midori isn't a custom character? Well, this variant is! I always thought it was a little bit odd that his students, Jaina and Grave, and his rival, Menelker, are all structurally highly similar, "shotos" in fighting game parlance, while Midori is a grappler who does completely his own thing. Hence this variant Midori which came about partly from wanting him to have clearer parallels to the other dragon fighters in the game, and partly from wanting to see if a character with a grappler's throw distribution and a more aggressive game plan could be balanced.
Normal Throws: 2 CP, X.8 Speed, 6 Damage & KD.
Normal Attacks: 1 CP, X.6 Speed, X Damage.
Merciful Master: When you win combat with a card of rank 2 through 10, you may choose to have both you and your opponent return your combat-revealed cards to your hands, and not continue your combo.
Offense Mastery: Opponents don’t draw when they block your normal attacks.
J: Dragon Breath, Attack, 2.4 speed, 9 (6) damage, 1 CP Ender
Q: Rising Dragon, Attack, 0.6 speed, 14 (2) damage, Can’t Combo
K: Whirlwind, Attack, +K, 2.2 speed, 8+8(2) damage, 2 CP Ender
- AA Talon Swoop, Throw, 1.8 speed, 17 damage, Can't Combo
- AAAA: Glimpse of the Dragon, Attack, 1.2 speed, 40 damage, Can’t Combo
*6: Dragon Within: When you Block an attack or Joker with this card, search your deck or discard for an ace or face card and put it on top of your deck. This does not return to hand or draw a card from blocking.
*7: Dragon’s Discernment: When you win combat with either side of this card, look at your opponent’s hand.
*10: Flight of the Dragon: When you Dodge an attack or Joker with this card, the next turn your attacks and throws are 2 speed faster, to a minimum of speed 1.0.
So what's going on here? Well, a lot of Midori's face cards and aces should seem familiar. I kept the general outline of his specials as much as I could, but tweaked their stats and repurposed them to fit the "fireball/DP/hurricane kick" mold. That means he still has some of the most damage-efficient single cards in the game. He's also still relatively slow, which is necessary because between his grappler throws, non-grappler attack spread, high-damage specials and Offense Mastery, his offensive options are all really, really strong. His 6-damage throws and limited ability to combo is an attempt to balance and mitigate that - he has to make the correct calls, and use Merciful Master to keep his few, precious blocks and dodges around. That builds his hand until he finds what he needs to go in hard, but it also allows the opponent to keep their tools - hopefully making for interesting decisions.
His abilities were designed to have interesting interactions with Merciful Master - he might find himself empty dodging on purpose to get an advantage in the next turn, or having to give the opponent their attack back to keep an otherwise non-returning block. His AAAA is tuned low compared to similar moves because I wanted him to have a structural equivalent to DSD and TPoS, but I didn't want it to be a very practical option for him - lorewise, he has more restraint than Menelker, so his "glimpse" of the dragon he truly is, is less devastating.
- Talon Swoop now costs AA to play
- Dragon's Discernment is no longer discarded on block.
Second up, a character conceived out of some ideas I had about what could be done with less-explored Yomi design space without adding new resources or complicated specials. The character and the lore was retrofit to the mechanics here, but then the lore helped inspire me to fill in some missing details. Behold:
Queen of “D”s
Normal Throws: 2 CP, X.6 Speed, 7 Damage & KD.
Normal Attacks: 1 CP, X.6 Speed, X Damage.
My Time Draws Nigh: At end of turn, you may discard two cards, then draw two cards.
7 B/Demon Ripper, Throw, +Any+Any, 8.6 speed, 7+3+3 damage, KD, 2 CP Ender
*J: Eleventh Hour, Attack, 6.6 speed, 13 (3) damage, 3 CP Ender
Q: Queen’s Gambit, Attack, +Any+Any, 0.2 speed, 1+6+6 damage, 3 CP Starter
K: Rush of Wraiths, Attack, 2.4 speed, 6 (2) damage, 1 CP Linker
- *AA Wake the Dead, Attack, 1.0 speed, 13 (1) damage, 2 CP Starter
- AA Danse Macabre, Attack, 1.0 speed, 20 (3), 3 CP Ender
*A: Wake the Dead: If Wake the Dead wins combat, continue your combo with cards from your discard instead of your hand. Return those cards to your hand at the end of combat.
*6: Demonic Pact (Draw): Take 5 damage, and return a non-Joker card of your choice from your discard to your hand.
*J: My Time is Now: When you hit and deal damage to your opponent with Eleventh Hour, attach it to your character card. As long as it’s attached, if the game ends in time-out, you win the game (regardless of life totals). Discard all attached Jacks if you are thrown or knocked down.
This character was basically developed completely around the idea for Wake the Dead, her Ace. Then once I decided what character it would be a good fit for, I supplemented that with ideas from her lore and title as Queen of Ds. The “D”s in question are the discard pile (which she uses as a resource, quite central to her game plan), dodging/dodge punishes (which she does really well), damage (which she deals quite a lot of, possibly too much?) and decking, running herself out of cards to end the game prematurely (and win, either by life lead or by her Jack ability).