Today our Frosthaven class spotlight will be the Quatryl Blinkblade. Blinkblades are melee assassins empowered with experimental Quatryl temporal drives that allow them to alter the flow of time. This great power comes at a cost, however, and Blinkblades must spend a significant amount of their time on the battlefield recovering from the drive’s effects.
In terms of playstyle, the Blinkblade is a melee assassin-style damage-dealer. You will rarely want to stay in a sustained fight, which means needing to pick your spots to move in and out to deal damage and take out priority targets.
If the playstyle appeals to you, the next hurdle is complexity. The Blinkblade is a very high complexity class - one of the highest in Frosthaven. Blinkblade’s complexity comes in two waves. First, the ability cards present a significant amount of information. Almost every action has a “Fast” and “Slow” version (explained below), which means that you will need to read almost twice as many actions to understand what your cards do.
Then there is the complexity in decision-making: you will also need to consider, for most rounds, twice as many possible variations of what you can do. If you are prone to “AP” (analysis paralysis - struggling to make decisions when presented with too many options), this may not be the class for you. On the other hand, if you like to be flexible and constantly adapt to new situations, you’ve come to the right place!
So I haven’t managed to scare you off yet? Great! Playing a Blinkblade may initially be daunting, but mastering this class is incredibly rewarding.
Blinkblade gameplay revolves around their Fast/Slow mechanic. Each round, they may either spend a Time Token to go Fast, or go Slow to gain a Time Token. Most of their strongest actions will be Fast, which means picking when to use your Time Tokens is key. That being said, there are a few general guidelines that will make your first time playing a Blinkblade a bit less daunting:
Unlike many other starting classes, Blinkblade doesn’t have any essential cards, but there are a couple whose value is less obvious and thus merit being quickly highlighted.
All four versions of this card are excellent and you’ll never be unhappy to see it in your hand. The Fast top action is your “get out of jail free” and also serves well for opening doors if your party has no one else who wants to do it. The Slow bottom action is great right before a Long Rest or if you have taken the Immobilize immunity perk.
The top loss is strong but also complex to use so let’s just ignore that for now. Instead, the most important part of this card for you is the initiative. When you’re surrounded by enemies, being able to go faster than all of them is invaluable. In a larger party, you can use the actual bottom action to really turn on the jets, but even in a two-character party, often just a default action Move 2 is good enough to avoid most harm.
Let’s take a look at a sample level 1 hand:
What are you looking for on level-up and what sort of build options will you have?
It’s important, when picking cards as you level up, to not solely focus on the most flashy Fast actions you can find. As you spend approximately half of your turns Slow, consistent Slow actions can be equally valuable. For example, Make It Count at level 3 has a perfect Slow top action (paired with a great Fast bottom action to boot).
Blinkblade Merch available in our shop!
In terms of additional builds, the most significant is using the persistent loss of level 4’s Precision Timing. Combined with actions like Double Time’s top and Twin Strike’s top, you can spend Slow turns attacking for as much or more than your Fast turns.
The Spyglass is cheap and effective. When you dash in to kill an enemy, you really want to make sure you’ll get the kill, and Spyglass can do that for you once per rest.
While you have exceptional mobility in Fast, your Slow movement is often quite lacking. Crude Boots can often be the difference between getting where you need to go in Slow or not. They can also make quite the difference when you’re forced to use Borrowed Time as a default Move 2.
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