Support cards have always been more difficult to destroy than units. Their reliability can offer you a critical advantage in the ferocious battles of Warhammer: Invasion The Card Game.
As we head into The Bloodquest Cycle, there are now quite a few ways to remove support cards from play, from the classic Demolition! (Core Set, 23) and Pillage (Core Set, 78), to Raiding Camps (The Inevitable City, 20) and Promenade of Malice (City of Winter, 92). Still, what most support removal effects have in common is that they target individual supports. Thus, they can be delayed. A little while ago, the Dwarfs learned the Master Rune of Disguise (Realm of the Phoenix King, 21). This nifty, inexpensive attachment can protect your most valuable support from targeted removal. When your opponent has to decide whether or not to remove the Master Rune before he can target the support he wanted to destroy in the first place, the economy of actions becomes an important consideration. Now, in Fragments of Power, the High Elves will take it one step further.
Where Master Rune of Disguise covered only the support it was attached to, Tor Elyr (Fragments of Power, 30) extends its protection on a much larger scale. It has some downsides when compared to the Rune: it is unique, and it only protects High Elf support cards (making it less useful to the Dwarfs and the Empire). But, obviously, the latter downside will hardly matter in a High Elf deck. In a deck full of High Elf cards, Tor Elyr affects all your support cards instead of just one, and it also provides a power – all for the very reasonable price of just two resources. With Tor Elyr in play, if your opponent wants to take out another of your supports, he will have to get rid of Tor Elyr first. Again, this creates concerns about the economy of actions, usually doubling the price for removing the desired support card. When he has to cut through one support card before cutting down the second, your opponent might find the price too high, if he can afford it at all.
Worthwhile Real Estate
Naturally, some decks depend more on their support cards than others. In some, the destruction of any given support card won’t set you back much at all. In such a deck, you’ll probably find better options than Tor Elyr. But some strategies depend on support cards a great deal. High Elf decks focused on indirect damage often require the sustained effects from Elven Warships (March of the Damned, 14) and Outposts of Tiranoc (The Silent Forge, 47) to wear down their opponents. If you're trying to summon hordes of powerful dragons, you’ll want your Dragon's Lair (Chaos Moon, 30) to remain unscathed. The same is true for the Watchstone of Athel Tamarha (The Fall of Karak Grimaz, 28) and Gathering the Winds (Rising Dawn, 10) in a High Elf deck focused on spells.
Tor Elyr can even prevent your opponent from removing a Judgement of Loec (Legends, 26) from his best unit and regaining its power. Finally, if you're using the Helm of Fortune (Rising Dawn, 11) to protect your unit on Return to Glory (The Silent Forge, 49) or another crucial quest, Tor Elyr can protect your Helm. And that’s a lot of support destruction your opponent will have to muster before he can possibly touch your unit.
If you want to go all out with your support card protection, you can combine both Tor Elyr and the Master Rune of Disguise to make your opponent cringe in frustration, but even by itself, Tor Elyr will allow you to better protect your support cards, thus making any strategy dependent on them all the more likely to succeed.
Rising Dawn lent tremendous power to the High Elves with the addition of their new legend, Eltharion the Grim (Rising Dawn, 2), and other cards. Now, as Tor Elyr looks to strengthen High Elf strategies built around supports, is this the year we’ll finally see the High Elves rise to glory?
Look for Tor Elyr and other cards to continue shaking up the tides of war when Fragments of Power explodes onto the scene!