Intro / What does it do?
Ironclads have a wide variety of damage cards that they can choose to build from. Quirky, conditional, and deadly, Hemokinesis is one of those cards that both help and hurt you.
This article will explore how good Hemokinesis 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 ingredients as you Ascend.
Considered to be the brawler among classes with high hp and straightforward damage, Ironclad with Hemokinesis looks like a match made in heaven.
As a 1-cost uncommon Attack card that deals 14 damage while losing 3 HP to 18 damage while losing 2 HP when upgraded, dealing a high amount of damage for a pinch of health seems like a good deal.
As much as damage is valued, health is a vital resource if you want to complete the climb. Use the card sparingly or you may face painful repercussions for recklessly using your health.
However, there are ways to get around the painful drawback if you build your deck around it.
How good is Hemokinesis?
Low cost and high damage, are two descriptions that Ironclad users surely love. The HP pinch per use will definitely hurt cumulatively, but it is hard to ignore that kind of firepower when you attack twice or add a Vulnerable.
Which cards does it work well with?
Cards that can help you deal with the self-damage inflicted by Hemokinesis are going to be valued.
Ironclad’s Reaper (Deal 4 damage to ALL enemies. Heal HP equal to unblocked damage. Exhaust.), and the colorless card Bandage Up (Heal 4 HP. Exhaust), are good sources of healing your health points.
Blood for Blood (Costs 1 less Energy for each time you lose HP this combat. Deal 18 damage) is another conditional high damage card that synergizes well with Hemokinesis’ HP loss to peg it down to a zero cost at best.
When not to pick Hemokinesis?
Hemokinesis is a mixed bag. At best, it is a good pick for high damage, but it slowly chipping away your HP with each use is a recipe to make you easy prey for Elites and Bosses.
Do not pick Hemokinesis to be the focal point of your offense unless you are certainly set with your deck build and relics. I would not recommend it if your deck has low defensive capabilities. If you are having a hard time with your current defense, adding HP loss is not a good idea.
When to Use Hemokinesis?
Hemokinesis works great as an additional source of damage when needed or a finisher. Without cards or relics that can truly help with the HP drawback, use it as a secondary source of damage.
Using Hemokinesis requires masterful planning and calculation. Considering your health and damage along with your opponent’s, killing them fast and first is the game plan.
Works great for monster duels, but exercise caution when it comes to mobs.
Which relics does it work well with?
As good as it is, there will be a compounding HP loss for each attack use as you Ascend. Healing and damage reducing relics will work wonders for it.
Here are examples of some of the best relics for Hemokinesis:
- Meat on the Bone (If your HP is at or below 50% at the end of combat, heal 12 HP)
- Tungsten Rod (Whenever you would lose HP, lose 1 less)
- Black Blood (Replaces Burning Blood. At the end of combat, heal 12 HP)
Softening that double-edged HP loss on your end will give you more confidence in utilizing the high damage of this card in any situation.
Which relics does it work poorly with?
These are not the best relics to have with Hemokinesis:
- Coffee Dripper (Gain 1 Energy at the start of each turn. You can no longer Rest at Rest Sites.)
- Mark of the Bloom (You can no longer heal.)
Hemokinesis will be a shovel to your grave if you can not heal decently.
Snecko Eye (Draw 2 additional cards each turn. Start each combat Confused.) may randomly take away its value as a low-cost, high-damage card with random energy costs.
Conclusion: Is Hemokinesis a good card?
Hemokinesis is a good card in the right scenario. If you are on the right side of health along with some block, it can be a real nasty low cost, high damage card.
With that double edged HP loss, there is a tendency to be bullish on damage and take survivability for granted which could lead to failed runs. However, its versatile card condition makes it an easy plug-and-play for most builds looking for more damage.
It works excellently as a secondary damage source to finish off monsters. If you plan on making it the primary source, you better be stacked with cards and relics to make up for the health you will be losing.
Having one on any build would not be a bad idea for those clutch situations that you need to close.