This year Gen Con attendees will have the ability to be of the first players to pick up a copy of the brand new Ascension: Immortal Gods expansion. Gary Games just announced via the game’s official website that Immortal Heroes will be available at the convention, and players can walk away with a full copy in-hand. If you follow the story in Ascension, Immortal Heroes picks right up where Storm of Souls left off.
Ascension is a deck building game in which players purchase heroes and defeat evil creatures to gain honor points. Once all of the honor points available on the board are used, the player with the most wins the game. But it dives much deeper than that, and as Gary Games explains, there’s a lot living under the surface. Storm of Souls introduced new Events to the game that had special effects as long as they were in play. Also included were trophy monsters that allowed players to sacrifice them to gain a special reward when needed. It was a standalone expansion for the game, just as Immortal Heroes will be.
The story of Immortal Heroes continues on from where Storm of Souls left off. Samael has freed Kythis from his duties as Gatekeeper to the afterlife. Kythis was created by the other gods as a demigod of the abyss, and now that he’s free he seeks to repay his creators for millennia of servitude to a meaningless cause. Kythis has suffered many times over limitations that sought to control his power, and he has grown tired of the old ones squandering away with their petty wars.
Samael lies dead, and the throne of Deofol sits empty. Someone with limitless power and an undying ambition shall be the new ruler of the gods, and Kythis has the revenge to fuel him for the deed. This is his final chance at divine retribution and he will stop at nothing to seize his gain.
With the loss of Samael the people of Vigil sit in uncertainty. Their hope is diminishing. They looked toward a future free from the Fallen One’s grasp. It was supposed to be a time of prosperity and celebration, whilst honoring the dead. But how, I ask, could you honor that which cannot accept death?
The Gatekeeper is absent and a generation of souls and fettered spirits haunt the living. Most people have learned to accept the strange spirits of deceased loved ones as a common occurrence; some have even found peace in knowing that the visages of their loved ones accompany them once more. Happiness won’t last long according to the sages, as a darker threat lies looming above; one that is not seen by the people of Vigil.
Souls continue to gather among the living, unable to embrace the peace that death promised to them in their final breath. Mages and seers communed to make an attempt at communicating with the dead to find some sort of answer for why the dead couldn’t make the journey to their promised land. They eventually found what they were seeking as they watched their loved ones become consumed by Kythis so he may eventually take control of his father’s throne at Deofol and leave Vigil in ruins.
Now it is up to both the living and the dead to drive back Kythis and put an end to his evil scheme.
Immortal Heroes will introduce a new feature called Soul Gems. When players gain a Soul Gem, it is placed in front of them like a Trophy Monster or a Construct. The player then may banish a Soul Gem they own at any time to gain the listed effect. The Soul Gem is drawn at random from a new side deck of 40 cards that will be included with the game. Some of the Soul Gems are more common, while others are rare and limited to one per deck. Banished Soul Gems are kept in a separate pile that is reshuffled when the Soul Gem deck runs out.
Immortal Heroes also expands upon what we’ve seen with Storm of Souls. Trophies added a lot of fun to the game and were received very well. With the new expansion Gary Games wanted to focus more on Ongoing Trophies. Ongoing Trophy Monsters play out just like regular Trophy Monsters, though they stay in play. For instance, once their Trophy effect is gained, they remain in play instead of being banished.
Something else we will see in Immortal Heroes is the addition of 5 new Event cards. Along with that comes a brand new mechanic that makes playing with older sets much easier. What you get are 20 New Event cards that will swap out the current Event with a new one. You’ll play with 5 of these for every expansion you’re playing with. The Event cards will all go aside in a face-down Event Deck. Shuffle in the New Event cards into your center deck so you can draw them, and only them, out when concerning Events. You’ll start with the top card from the Event deck in play (because a lot of players were asking if they could start the game with one in play) and then deal out the Center Row. Any time you reveal a New Event card you’ll simply swap out the Event that’s currently on the field. Make sense?
These new additions will no doubt make Ascension even more fun to play than it already is. I know I’m picking up a copy at Gen Con this year, and you should too. It’s an expansion to what’s already available, but it’s also a standalone copy. You can pick this right up and play with it, right out of the box. Check back for more Ascension: Immortal Heroes updates, and if you’re interested about the game you can check it out on its official website.