I frequent WotC's Booster Draft Simulator about once every couple weeks. This weeks sim has an interesting choice in (I believe) the third pack. Blaze and Whispersilk Cloak.
Now, these are both bombs in draft. So I find myself in a strange position. No matter what colors I'm playing, I think Whispersilk Cloak is the better choice, yet I pick Blaze every time.
Whispersilk affords shroud (which is awesome) and unblockable (also amazing). In draft, evasion is the biggest asset.
While several fat red picks come your way (like a shivan dragon) the white and green cards that come your way are strong (specifically referencing this week’s draft sim still). So, again, the fatties in green would benefit highly from the cloak - can't be burned by it, get through a fatty.
Yet, I still pick the Blaze. Is it the subconscious fear of burn to the face? I think it might be more than that, though I may be wrong. Slapping a few mountains into a draft deck for a Shivan Dragon and a Blaze is definitely a possibility.
I would like clarification on other people’s opinion of this particular choice. It might help if you used the draft sim, as well. Link provided.
I ran through the draft, going U/G through the first pack (though taking the Pyromancer 3rd pick), then going into U/R/G on the Shivan Dragon second pack and starting to pick land search highly. (which there was plenty of)
On the 3rd pack, I would say even if I stayed with U/G and passed the Dragon, I would still splash red on that loop and play the Blaze over picking the Cloak. It's a pretty expensive investment for those abilities, and most of the time that's a play and an activation that you could use towards 2 more cards in play which can beat face anyways.
Blaze, on the other hand, is pure burn; it wins games by itself, and usually will take out just about anything on the board by itself. Usually, in draft formats, the X-damage burn spells (Blaze, Demonfire, Banefire) are almost automatic first picks because of their versatility, and just how easy they are to splash in almost any deck.
They do always provide the same packs. They're also usually trying to teach you a "lesson" with each draft. Like in this one, you're clearly supposed to be base Blue. But then they throw varying amounts of Black, Red, and White at you so you have to decide which to stick with -- can't draft them all. If you jump on White, which is only open in Pack 2, you get punished for not going with the Pack 1 signals.
Blaze is the better choice. In a game you're winning, both are good, making it harder for your opponent to recover. In a game that's stalled, both can win the game given time. But in a game you're losing (you have few/no creatures, or can't win a damage race) the cloak won't help; blaze can either cause you to win the damage race "out of nowhere", or can take out their strongest attacker, helping you stabilize. Obviously, you won't toast a creature if you can win with the blaze; but it gives you an option if your opponent gets a creature out you cannot deal with otherwise.
I really wished them to regularly update the simulator for the more recent draft formats.
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"A key part of design is not making the cards do the most but rather making cards that get the most out of the player. Almost every sorcery could be an instant. Most cards could have another ability. The average creature could get +1 toughness. What makes a game fun is not the power of the cards, but the power of the experience. Working for a victory is a far greater pleasure than having one handed to you." - Mark Rosewater, January 23, 2006