Christopher Badell
about 1 year ago

Project Update: New Villain Update — The Ruler of Æternus

Greetings, Sentinels!

This is the last of the deck reveal updates! Tomorrow we’ll have an update wrapping up the campaign, and I’ll slide a few reveals in there as well, but this is it! So, let’s get to it!

The Ruler of Æternus

“He’s going to find out!” the scrawny demon screeched, wringing its clawed hands. “He’s going to be so mad when he finds out!”

“Hush now, Greezigrax. You’ll work yourself into another one of your stomach aches, and then you’ll be no use to anyone.” Seviathall stood and stretched, looking over the hordes of demons assembling before the black stone temple. “Between my plan and the army of Abbados, we may finally take the throne, once and for all.”

“And I am also here!” Greezigrax whimpered, both a plea to not be forgotten and a complaint that he had been forced to take part.

“Yes, little one. You are also here, and oh so instrumental to our plan.” As Seviathall turned to address the simpering demon, Abbados stomped up the temple steps, leaving cracks of fire in his wake.

“What are you two scheming?” the massive warrior demon grumbled, eyeing Seviathall and Greezigrax with unequal suspicion. “I assume your deceitfulness is pleased with my armies. But I still wait for your promised opportunity. When do we strike?”

“Patience,” crooned Seviathall. “All shall become clear soon enough. He has no idea.”

With a flash of brilliant light, a tall and beautiful figure appeared between the three demons, his flowing hair and shimmering raiment forcing all three of them to shield their eyes. Greezigrax squealed in horror as the incandescent figure turned his gaze across each of them in turn. “Who has no idea, my dear? I find myself most curious about your machinations.”

Without missing a beat, Seviathall stepped forward — only the momentary clenched jaw giving away what must have been incredible frustration. “Welcome, Lord Lusithar! We have been awaiting your arrival with bated breath! As per your wishes, we have assembled this army of Æternus to do your bidding! We await your command.”

“Ah, but I ordered no such assembly,” Lusithar purred, clearly pleased at having caught his would-be rivals in the midst of some plot that they hoped would be his undoing. “Mannock informed me of a gathering force, so I just had to come see it for myself. I am most eager to learn of your intentions, dearest friends.”

Greezigrax quavered as Lusithar turned to behold him. “G-g-great luminescent one. We, ah, that is to say, Seviathall had hoped… we all wanted-- WOULD YOU LIKE THIS ROCK?” Peeling a large stone from the black floor and holding it aloft, Greezigrax cringed with his entire being at the smiting that was sure to follow.

“Oh, my!” Lusithar said, his voice both feather light and millstone heavy, all at once. “What a lovely rock. Greezigrax, my faithful ally, why don’t you hang onto it for me. In fact, why don’t you craft a cord of silver and string that stone about your neck? From now on, whenever I see you, I expect that you’ll be wearing it, as a sign of our regard for each other. You wouldn’t want to end up like Belagorr, now would you?”

Greezigrax slunk away, holding the uncomfortably large stone with both of his spindly hands. Abbados had turned to survey his army, and he now turned back to glare at Lusithar. “Whatever our intent may have been, bright one, this army stands ready to follow whoever sits on the throne.” 

“I believe I happen to currently have that honor, correct?” said Lusithar, clearly not asking a real question.

Abbados gave a curt nod, “It is as you say. What would you have your army do?”

Seviathall had almost made it to the edge of the temple platform roof, clearly hoping to slip away. Lusithar’s words halted such an escape. “Sweet Seviathall! I am so eager to see this army that you and your friends here assembled. I would send them to fight against The Grey, which has been working its purposes at our borders once again. But! I would have you at the front of the vanguard! To show your dedication to this plan of yours!”

Seviathall swallowed with clear discomfort. “You know I would never question your brilliance, Lusithar. But fighting against The Grey? There is no fighting to be had there. It is only falling to its nothingness. Surely this army, and my talents, could be put to some better use?”

Lusithar met Seviathall’s entreaty with an unyielding stare. “Seviathall, my trusted advisor, you know just how important it is that we stop The Grey from encroaching any more than it already has. And I know no one better than yourself to lead such an effort.” With an idle adjusting of his glowing crown, Lusithar turned away, opening a shining portal, through which Seviathall and Abbados could see the Throne of Æternus. “Besides, I have important work to do. Torment is not going to happen on its own! I trust you both to use your planning and your army to carry out my bidding. Best of luck to you both!” 

As the portal closed behind Lusithar, Seviathall turned to Abbados, taking a breath, but Abbados’s massive hand swung out, grasping Seviathall by the face. “Not a word! You got us into this. You heard him. You’re leading the charge. I’m going to lose a lot of my army to this. Regretfully, you’ll likely prove clever enough to save your own skin. But I’m not letting you sneak your way out of this one so easily. We all want a shot at that throne, but we’ve lost once already this day. Next time you have some clever plan, bring it to someone else, witch.”

The Princes of Æternus fight for control of the throne. All the while, Æternus itself is more than content to allow their in-fighting, as all it cares about is torment, and the Princes at each other’s throats provides torment in spades. But if something were to happen to put enough Princes out of commission, the force of Æternus might be forced to take direct action…

Whew! OK, I thought it would be cool to do a backstory thing for the demon Princes of Æternus as a bit of a story… and then I just kept going? It’s very fun to write in their voices! Anyway, we created a lot of this around the time of The Letters Page episode #195, which was all about underworlds. We talked a bit more about the princes in particular in the Darkstrife and Painstake foes episode, linked in yesterday’s update.

So, how does The Ruler of Æternus work as a villain deck? Well, first, we need a character card!

(Design not final)

It’s just a chair! But what a chair it is, at that! And the various Demons are going to fight for control of that throne! When a target would go in the Throne space, it goes ON TOP of the villain character card, covering up the chair art (the throne is no longer empty!) and also the setup text, since you don't need that anymore. It's part of the villain character card now!

As for that flip condition... I'll bet you can guess what just might be waiting on the other side of this villain character card... but showing it would be giving away too much!

In the Æternus environment update, some of the cards had an “Æ” icon on them, but that icon wasn’t the final version — you can see it on the character card, and also on these Prince cards!

(Design not final)

Besides the various princes, we also have other demons who might want to try to take the throne!

(Design not final)

Plus, other things the deck does, of course. Mostly in-fighting between Princes... but that's not going to go well for the Heroes, either.

(Design not final)

Fighting all these Princes and Demons and surviving the torments of Æternus? It’s, well, in a word: hell. Good luck!

Oh, and I’m not going to do a whole Q&A section, but I will say in response to the most frequently asked question from yesterday’s update: yes, you can mix Darkstrife and Painstake variant cards.

Thanks everyone for joining us on this journey! We’re almost done, but there’s still time to save the Multiverse! See you all tomorrow.





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