Rise of the Underworlds LoR Card Impressions: Pyke

Rise of the Underworlds LoR Card Impressions: Pyke

Rise of the Underworlds Spoilers Day 6

We’ve all been clamoring for a certain someone to show up and save Bilgewater from all the bullies of Runeterra.

Well, today is the day we’ve been waiting for. I’m Jordan “WhatAmI” Abronson and I’m here to introduce you to Legends of Runeterra’s new Assassin du jour, Mr. Pyke.

Here are the cards we’ll be covering today:

  • Pyke (Bilgewater champion level 1 + 2)
  • Death From Below (Bilgewater spell from Pyke)
  • Pyke’s Bone Skewer (Bilgewater spell + Pyke’s champion spell)
  • Jaul Fish (Bilgewater unit)
  • Sacred Protector (Ionia unit)
  • Swiftwing Formation (Demacia unit)

Pyke + Death from Below

Pyke level 1 (LoR Card)

  • Pyke level 1
    • 4 mana 2|3 Champion
    • Quick Attack, Lurk
    • Text – When I Lurk, transform me into Death from Below.
    • Level up: Allied Pykes have dealt 15+ Damage

Pyke level 2 (LoR Card)

  • Pyke level 2
    • 4 mana 3|4 Champion
    • Quick Attack, Lurk
    • Text – When I Lurk transform me into Death from Below. When I Kill an enemy I strike the weakest enemy.

Death From Below (LoR Card)

  • Death From Below
    • 4 mana Fast spell
    • Text – Summon a Pyke that strikes an enemy.

So there’s a lot to unpack here. First off Pyke is significantly more powerful if you can trigger him on top of your deck than if he is just put into play.

In spell form he is actually pretty nutty, being a solid removal spell and attacker for four damage, which makes up for his pretty underwhelming base form.

Secondly getting Pyke to level is generally going to take at least two solid attack tokens, sometimes more, but his leveled form is absolutely nuts.

Depending on the exact board state this ability could quite easily cascade down the line of enemy units and sweep all of them out of play.

This can happen at Fast speed from basically any Demacia card, Bone Skewer, or just Pyke himself in spell form. Time to move on over Skies Descend, because there’s a new sheriff in town.

As if all that weren’t enough, there’s nothing that stops you from casting Death from Below while Pyke is in play if you can get another copy of Lurking on top.

All in all this card is beautifully synergistic and absolutely loretastic. I can’t wait to play with him to see if he is as busted as he looks at first blush.

Pyke’s Bone Skewer

Bone Skewer (LoR Card)

  • Pyke’s Bone Skewer
    • 4 mana Fast spell
    • Text – Summon a Pyke that strikes an enemy.

We already had this one and it was an absolute beating when used in the Deep deck but didn’t see much play elsewhere. This will be a powerful tool with Pyke.

Helping him level, jumping him to the top where he can flip to his more powerful spell form, and even trigger his game-ending multi-kill.

While it is negative card advantage, the effects of this spell may be powerful enough for it to make the bilgewater Lurk deck even outside of drawing two Pykes.

Having to deal with potentially as many as five Bone Spears in the deck from your opponent when Pyke is in play is a terrifying thought.

Jaull-Fish

Jaull-Fish (LoR Card)

  • Jaull-Fish
    • 8 mana 2|7 follower
    • Lurk
    • Text – Play: Each Lurker ally strikes a random enemy.

The immediate comparison I find here is with old fan favorite Riptide Rex. Get to eight mana and then just completely wreck your opponent’s board.

The key differences are that this buddy can’t go face and need some solid help still on the board on turn eight to get his job done.

Add that to the fact that Lurk seems to generally want to be relatively low to the ground archetype and it’s hard to where this card finds its home.

Maybe as a one of to break mirrors or in a more midrangey version?

That said look for this to end an awful lot of games after being generated by the lurk-creator cards.

Just because I don’t think we’ll see this one in many main decks doesn’t mean I don’t expect to see it doing some crazy nonsense. And if the nonsense gets crazy enough then who knows?

Sacred Protector

Sacred Protector (LoR Card)

  • Sacred Protector
    • 7 mana 8|7 follower
    • Lurk
    • Text – Play: Each Lurker ally strikes a random enemy.

Got to admit that Shen’s boat being a giant temple-treant might be the sickest thing I have seen this set.

Art and lore aside though the question with this card is going to be where does it fit in.

I think that the traditional Demacia/Ionia decks that Shen loves are going to have a hard time playing this in slots that are typically reserved for Cithria, Brightsteel Formation, or even Tiana.

Like many other boats, while awesome, this one may end up without a niche to call its own due to the other power cards around it in the archetype it wants to help.

Swiftwing Formation

Swiftwing Flight (LoR Card)

  • Swiftwing Formation
    • 4 mana 3|2
    • Challenger
    • Text – Play: Create a Silverwing Vanguard, Blinding Assault, or Fleetfeather Tracker in hand. Attack: Give other Challenging allies +1|+1 this turn.

Ladies, gentlefolk, beings of all varieties, I give you the Lulu support we’ve all been waiting for. This does everything that the support archetype could possibly want.

It adds tempo, supports, and gives just the little bit of value that the deck is often seriously lacking.

Lulu/Shen Demacia Tempo has already reared its head a few times over the metagames we’ve seen and I would not be surprised to see it again on the back of Swiftwing buddy over here.

Whenever Culling Strike and Vile Feast take a hiatus, archetypes like this can often flourish, so watch out.

We’re revealing new Rise of the Underworld cards every day at our spoiler page. To build decks with the new cards, head to our Deck Builder.

WhatAmI streams at twitch.tv/xxwhatamixx around 10AM PST every day