Intro / What does Exhume Do?
Despite being one of the rarer cards in the Ironclad roster, Exhume is one of those situational cards that can completely save the day or be a total waste of space.
This article will explore how good Exhume is in Slay the Spire, and whether it is a good card to include in your deck.
Before we continue, it is good to keep in mind that no build is perfect and you cannot get your desired build each run in Slay the Spire. Card mastery and familiarity will be the key ingredient as you Ascend.
The Exhaust mechanic in Slay the Spire creates a delicate balance between cards being overpowered or not, a single-use card in combat.
With that being said, Ironclads have more than a handful of powerful cards that have Exhaust, like Feed (Deal 10 damage. If Fatal, raise your Max HP by 3) and Reaper. (Deal 4 damage to ALL enemies. Heal HP equal to unblocked damage.)
Exhume is a convenient skill card that can easily recover those useful Exhausted cards. For just 1-energy with an Exhaust itself, upgrading makes it an even more convenient zero cost.
However, Exhume’s true value is only gauged through the amount and usefulness of the deck’s Exhaust cards. Regardless of your planned build to Ascend, this card is one of those situational cards in which you can go big or go home.
How good is Exhume?
This card will be a superstar if you are stacked with quality cards that have Exhaust.
Getting back an Offering to set up a big offensive or a timely Impervious to wall up for incoming damage will be an awesome scenario.
Without similar game-changing cards, it is hard to think about retrieving a Pummel or an Intimidate from your Exhaust pile just to give utility to Exhume
Despite the conditional use of this card, it is hard to deny that it is pretty powerful with the right setup. This undoubtedly would be difficult, it would require much deck building to fully maximize Exhume’s potential.
Which cards does it work well with?
Getting a second dose of some of Ironclad’s strongest cards will always be a good pair with Exhume.
Cards that work well with it are Feed and Reaper as described above, along with Offering (Lose 6 HP. Gain 2-energy. Draw 3 cards. Exhaust), also Seeing Red. (Gain 2-energy. Exhaust.)
When not to pick Exhume?
There are only two things to consider when considering Exhume on your deck: Cards with Exhaust and the quality of your cards that have Exhaust.
Don’t pick Exhume if you really don’t have significant cards that can help you out. Even if you have cards with Exhaust, will it be beneficial or will the value be significant drawing them again?
Better have two Yes answers to those conditions or you will likely be wasting a card slot on your deck. Do not pick with that circumstance.
When to Use Exhume?
This card is as straightforward as it comes. Either you want a double dose of value from your retrieved card or you are using it to set up something big on your turn. You may also use it as a last minute solution to cover a mistake you have made on previous rounds.
Which relics does it work well with?
With utility as an Exhausted card retriever, it is just fitting that Exhaust triggered relics would work best with it. Examples are:
- Charon’s Ashes (Whenever you Exhaust a card, deal 3 damage to ALL enemies.)
- Dead Branch (Whenever you Exhaust a card, add a random card to your hand.)
On the other hand, Dolly’s Mirror (Upon pickup, obtain an additional copy of a card in your deck) is a great relic that can duplicate your best Exhaust card.
Which relics does it work poorly with?
Aside from the obvious relics that trigger without an Exhaust requirement, these are some of the worst relics to work with Exhume:
- Pocketwatch (Whenever you play 3 or less cards in a turn, draw 3 additional cards at the start of your next turn)
Pocketwatch works against Exhume by waiting on the next turn.
- Strange Spoon (Cards which Exhaust when played will instead discard 50% of the time)
This interestingly adds an RNG factor to Exhaust cards, but it hampers the more precise tactical value of Exhume for card recalls.
- Bronze Scales (Start each combat with 3 Thorns.)
As for Bronze Scales, you can do better with a relic that adds value when attacked.
Exhume’s power depends entirely on Exhausted cards, creating a second opportunity for an important card on your current turn.
Conclusion: Is Exhume a good card?
Without a decent Exhaust card in your deck, it will be a hand filler on your draws. If you are going for a high offensive build that focuses on strength gain and damage or a high defensive build that focuses on block cards and Body Slam,
Exhume is a decent situational card that can give you the advantage in certain scenarios. Honestly, it may even win you the game at best. If there is anything we have learned climbing on countless runs, consistency or card stability and utility will always be the name of the game in higher-level play. It isn’t the best card to work with, but it also isn’t the worst.
Given a choice and compared to other rare cards in the Ironclad roster, it won’t be such a loss to pass on this card.
What do you think of Exhume?