Over the years, many supporters have purchased the ability to design a Divination Card to make their mark on Path of Exile forever. We've heard a lot of stories behind the scenes about the meanings behind their designs and we wanted to share these with you. In the first of this series, we talked with ReignFreeze who designed The Bitter Blossom Divination Card to learn the story behind the design.
I joined the Path of Exile family in Closed Beta. I got my beta invite two days before my birthday in 2012 and I was pretty excited. I have always loved RPGs - I grew up with Diablo 1 and 2, HeXeN, Baldur's Gate, and many others. They had occupied my mind in a positive way that I'd never experienced with any other hobby before. Jumping into Path of Exile felt like coming home. There is a special place in my heart for the first time I defeated Merveil and entered the freshly created Act 2 for the first time, and who can forget the Piety-runs, trying to get the best bases we could back then. While the early days of the game may not hold a candle to where we are now, it's important to remember where we all came from and that initial love for the game.
Even 8 years ago, I knew I wanted to be part of the game. I didn't have the money to support the game with any of the packs so I tried to give it all the publicity I could. I would convince all my friends and colleagues to download it and play. I would talk about it on streams and podcasts, any time or place I got the chance. I played before I started college, all through my courses, and out the other side. I've worked hard to make a career that could allow me to afford luxuries that were only dreams of a kid with his eyes glued to the computer screen. I bought a few supporter packs here and there, with fun-money, and over the years it built up to a substantial collection. Ultimately, GGG reached out and offered me the opportunity to purchase a div card. I was ecstatic. I didn't even realize that this was still an option. I had always assumed that this ability, similar to the uniques, was tied to supporter packs that were no longer available. Unfortunately, I could not afford it at the time it was offered, as I ran into some minor health complications.
Every year, I would reach back out to GGG and see if I could still purchase the Divination Card and every year they would tell me yes. But things never quite lined up nicely. After a series of unfortunate events and setbacks, the stars finally aligned. We had had a vacation cancelled due to covid and my significant other told me that I should use the cash infusion to finally purchase the Divination Card for myself. It was a pretty welcome consolation prize. As I worked on what I would choose, I became more and more excited.
I love Magic: the Gathering, I love Death Guard (WH40k), and I love Path of Exile. This card would incorporate the theming of all three of my favourite things. The name, 'The Bitter Blossom' is obviously a reference to the classic Magic Card. The flavor of the gem choice and accompanying text is in reference to the Death Guard and specifically their "Feel no Pain" rule. And lastly, I get to be part of my favourite game forever with the creation of this card. I like the aspect of all three games that are grim and dark in nature. I wanted the art on the card to include some sort of flora growing out of a pustular demon and I'm quite happy with how it turned out.
As for the reward itself, I was hoping to make a card that gives any random corrupted chaos gem at gem level 22, with no gem quality. I felt this would give chaos players, especially those with Essence Drain or Toxic Rain builds something to chase for to really push their damage to the limit. After discussing with GGG, we came to the conclusion that the card would instead give a level 21 gem with 23% quality as Divination Cards can't grant items that don't exist.
And lastly, in keeping with the theme, I wanted the number of cards to be a set or multiple of three. In MtG the three colour wedges are generally the most powerful while having the cost of spreading your deck much thinner across your land base. Additionally, in Death Guard, the main symbol is three decaying skulls and references to three appear numerous times throughout their lore. And lastly, it reminds of the launch of PoE's full release - three acts, three difficulties and late, three Ascendancies per class.
Now that my Divination Card is completed and released, I get to be part of my favourite game forever, and that's something pretty special. Good luck, have fun, don't die, exiles!
on Oct 25, 2020, 6:00:00 PM
Grinding Gear Games