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Unstable Q&A with Mark Rosewater
 
The Dos and Don'ts of Silver-Border Commander
 
Word of Command: Un-believable
  • posted a message on Unstable seems like a great hit - but is it really?
    Quote from Jay13x »
    So if you read blogatog and some of the articles on other sites Unstable is a giant hit. On sales figures alone, the 4th Unset is probably a when and not an if. Maro's mission accomplished.

    I wonder however, how much of this is because of the actual silverbordered cards and how much this is because of the goodies - which in this case means the foil tokens but most importantly - the full art basics. Looking at the current prices on magiccardmarket.com, the price of an unstable booster starts at €2,15 whereas the single prices for the full art basics range from €1,60 - €2,85, which means an average of €2,23 - more than the price of a booster! So it seems that the price of a pack is roughly equivalent to the expected value of the full art basic in there (a little lower because sometimes you pull a steamflogger boss) and the rest is just the toilet paper that comes with it.

    Now as someone who finds silver bordered only slightly amusing to see and would never spend any real money on it this is understandable. But if this is true then how can Unstable be considered a success?
    Questions to consider: How is any set with chase cards a success? How is this different than basically any set? What about the other Un-sets that were less successful but also had goodies?
    Yes, every set has chase cards, but those are actually cards of the expansion. Take the chase cards away and the next top X cards from that set will be chased after. Unstable however, like any unset, is about silver bordered goofyness, with the full art lands just being a side bonus. Yet, I feel that it is the side bonus what makes Unstable sell so well instead of the actual expansion. In other words: if Unstable did not include these lands but sales had to be based soley of the silver bordered cards, I think sales wouldn't even be half of what they are now, and probably even less than a quarter.
    Posted in: Magic General
  • posted a message on Unstable seems like a great hit - but is it really?
    So if you read blogatog and some of the articles on other sites Unstable is a giant hit. On sales figures alone, the 4th Unset is probably a when and not an if. Maro's mission accomplished.

    I wonder however, how much of this is because of the actual silverbordered cards and how much this is because of the goodies - which in this case means the foil tokens but most importantly - the full art basics. Looking at the current prices on magiccardmarket.com, the price of an unstable booster starts at €2,15 whereas the single prices for the full art basics range from €1,60 - €2,85, which means an average of €2,23 - more than the price of a booster! So it seems that the price of a pack is roughly equivalent to the expected value of the full art basic in there (a little lower because sometimes you pull a steamflogger boss) and the rest is just the toilet paper that comes with it.

    Now as someone who finds silver bordered only slightly amusing to see and would never spend any real money on it this is understandable. But if this is true then how can Unstable be considered a success?
    Posted in: Magic General
  • posted a message on Nissa's Spanish Inquisition!
    So there's this mono green infinite combo I thought up myself that, since Mirage Mirror is actually doable in commander (you need blue before that). Since each of the cards involved would also play nicely in this deck on it's own, it might be something cool to include as a "nuclear" option:

    Baru, Fist of Krosa + Paleoloth + Mirage Mirror

    Have all three in play and at least 5 lands. Copy Baru with Mirage Mirror, sacrifice Baru to the legend rule. Play any creature to trigger Paleoloth's ability, return Baru to your hand. Discard Baru to the mirror's grandeur ability, create a token. Token triggers, Paleoloth, returning Baru etc. Infinite creatures.

    Baru is good in this deck, providing all your creatures boosts and trample, especially in concert with your commander nearly guaranteeing at least 1 land drop every turn.
    Mirage Mirror is just a generally good card, whenever I see someone play it they are always able to put it to good use.
    Paleoloth is a good source of repeatable recursion which, unlike Hua Tuo, Honored Physician, doesn't cost you a card. And refills your hand when your commander ultimates.

    Another "package" you can add for more flexibility is:
    Ramunap Excavator + Buried Ruin + Haunted Fengraf + Blighted Woodland + (if budget is not a problem) Crucible of Worlds.

    This package in general gives your deck a lot more recursion options while effectively only costing you one, maybe two slots in the form of the excavator and/or the crucible. If you do run this, I would recommend finding room for Green Sun's Zenith (Why are not running this already?). Plus alongside Baru, having a Blighted Woodlands activation on hand is like having a repeatable source of overruns.

    Finally, if you'd run all these suggestions, then Titania, Protector of Argoth is also good as she synergizes with both these packages (Is/creates 5+power creatures, works with lands).

    Posted in: Multiplayer Commander Decklists
  • posted a message on Illusionist's Gambit
    Quote from Boros_Blendo »
    Regeneration also pulls critters out of combat, but taps them (might not be worth loss as a future blocker)
    A probably unneccesary clarification: Only if the creature dies and the regeneration is actually used. Setting up a regeneration shield alone will not tap it.
    Posted in: Commander (EDH)
  • posted a message on RIX SPOILERS: Angarth's -3 ability and tribal spells
    I figured as much, but thanks for clarifying!
    Posted in: Magic Rulings
  • posted a message on The Grand Calcutron and casting spells from other zones
    Yeah, on Blogatog by Mark Rosewater himself.
    Posted in: Magic Rulings
  • posted a message on RIX SPOILERS: Angarth's -3 ability and tribal spells

    So what happens if i return a Nameless Inversion to the battlefield? My gut says that SBE's will put in the graveyard again but I wonder how this works oficially?
    Posted in: Magic Rulings
  • posted a message on The Commander's Tools Game
    Fleeting Wisdom UB
    Enchantment
    At the beginning of each player's end step, that player draws a card.
    Whenever an opponent discards a card, you may tap or untap target permanent.

    Next: Maralen of the Mornsong
    Posted in: Custom Card Contests and Games
  • posted a message on The Commander's Tools Game
    Scavengry of War 1R
    Enchantment
    Whenever an equipped creature you control dies, you may reattach all equipment attached to that creature to another creature you control.

    Next: Kumano, Master Yamabushi
    Posted in: Custom Card Contests and Games
  • posted a message on New to EDH but not to Magic, need some help!
    Quote from Vissah »
    My biggest concern about playing three colors is not having your colors on the field fast enough and getting color screwed.
    That is why I am a bigger fan of playing two colors.
    In EDH, barring a cutthroat environment, it doesn't really matter if you need one or two additional turns to be able to play everything.

    Plus Karador is in green so you can (re)use all the ETB - search a land creatures. So there's not really a problem.
    Posted in: Commander (EDH)
  • posted a message on What's the point in Bolas creating the Eternals?
    Quote from teazia »
    That would be another awesome development!


    Not really, The Problem the Eldrazi had is that they were portrayed as something so powerful that not even 3 Old Walkers could stand against them, one of them being as powerful as Nicol Bolas (who is straight up the most powerful being we have seen in the setting pre-eldrazi) so that the "fall of the titans" felt cheap when it happened, the same sort of thing would likely happen with whatever happens to beat Lord Nicolas.
    Whatever will eventually lead to Bolas's demise, it has to be something that backfires in combination with a set up plan by the good guys. There's nothing we know off that realistically can beat him in a straight up fight.

    Maybe some scheme of Ugin where he uses his binding magic to bind and seal Nicol Bolas, similar to what he did with the Eldrazi, through some sort of elaborate trap.
    Posted in: Magic Storyline
  • posted a message on Dominaria Returns
    Quote from epoa »
    Honestly, I'm hoping we get back the locations that were permanently phased out by Teferi. Nicol Bolas demonstrated to Teferi that his skills with time far exceed the temporal mage. Seeing how that segment of the world was phased out prior to the mending, Dominaria's role as a nexus plane, and Nicol Bolas's desire to return to his god-like self, I am hoping that is part of the plot and the phased out lands hold a key to Bolas's plot.

    Also, kinda excited to see Jhoira again.

    They used commander products to foreshadow events before, Teferi's Protection being a high profile card brings the story of what happened there back for a lot of new players. One way or another, this is going to be relevant.

    Quote from Caranthir »
    I also believe that we will see Teferi. After all, he always was a temporal mage, and if anyone would find a way how to cheat time and aging, it is him.

    Given what I said above, he's nearly certainly in. I do hope he aged somewhat though. I think the Morgan Freeman look would suit him Cool

    There was some talk earlier in the thread about the possibility of two consecutive Dominaria sets in a row. I think this is a very likely possibility. they could do one set where they just set up the world, where the story focus is more on how each location became like that and based on what (possibly in combination with one or two origin stories), and then when the setting is established have Bolas arrive with his Lazotep army and have the walkers of old join up with the new ones for a "hell no, this is one interplanar invasion too many" story.

    Looking forward to Bolas scolding Chandra again when they fight, only to have Jaya step in with what will no doubt be the flavor text diss of the century and roast his draconic hiny Mad
    Posted in: Magic Storyline
  • posted a message on Ixalan General Discussion
    I wonder what his abilities will be then. So far we've only seen him being a decent fighter who fights with burning chains. Fits a minotaur character as they are physically strong but PW combat abilities don't translate that easily to cardboard unless they can become creatures themselves. But that's basically Gideon's thing (And one Sarkhan card that turns into a dragon) so I wouldn't expect that to be part of the ability suite.

    Maybe some combination of taunting and messing with combat:?

    Angarth, The Angry Dad 2RB
    Legendary Planeswalker - Angarth
    /+2\: Target creature attacks during his or her controller's next combat step if able. Until the beginning of your next turn, if that creature deals combat damage to you or a planeswalker you control, destroy it.
    /+0\: Until the beginning of your next turn, whenever a creature an opponent controls dies, draw a card.
    /-8\: You get an emblem with "At the beginning of each opponent's upkeep, goad all creatures that player controls".
    4

    Something like that is a yet unexplored PW angle that befits a combat character.
    Posted in: Magic Storyline
  • posted a message on New to EDH but not to Magic, need some help!
    Quote from Gutterstorm »
    As far as the mana base goes you can do just fine in a three color deck with some budget lands. You don't have to go with an ABU/shock/fetch land base for three color mana to be perfectly consistent. Especially in a Green deck.

    Of note: if you already own some of the cards in question for your legacy/ modern decks just use the same sleeves that you use for those and instead of buying more move cards between decks as you need them. Tons of commander players use the "binder system."

    As a matter of fact, I use a lot of color printed proxies of cards I own because I want to keep the decks playable on hand. I only own most of my expensive EDH staples only once, but use them in a dozen decks. As it are all cards I own, people I play with never mind: everybody understands you not buying 4 Scalding Tarn for example just because you have 4 decks containing both red and blue.
    Posted in: Commander (EDH)
  • posted a message on Commander Matter/Command Zone related cards
    Quote from cyberium_neo »


    The PW's that could be your commander were also cool, would love to see some multicolored ones.
    I would absolutely kill for something Vanguard like that's just legal, period. This would not neccesarily have to be a commander specific thing as long as it will be legal in commander, though some commander specific emblems would be fine as well.


    Could be something like:

    Mr. UB
    1UB
    Creature - etc
    2/2
    If ~ is your commander at the beginning of the game, you loses 20 life and get an emblem with "At the beginning of your upkeep, you may draw a card."
    Whenever you draw a card, you may discard a card from your hand.
    Partner

    Mr. WG
    1WG
    2/2
    Partner
    If ~ is your commander at the beginning of the game, you gain 10 life and you get an emblem with "Creatures you control get +1/+0."
    1WG: Create a green 1/1 saproling creature token.
    Partner

    Emblems are more of a PW thing, and the more ways there are to create emblems, the harder the push will be for cards that interact with them. And the fact that they can't be interacted with is what sets them apart from other permanents and makes it worth it to spend 3+ turns "charging up" in order to get them. Therefore, I don't feel using emblems is a good thing here.

    Having said that, I do think you can create a vanguard style of play by combining a more powerfull eminence effect with a "at the beginning of the game" trigger like the Chancellors (I don't feel combining this with multicolor partner is such a good idea, at least the first time around. KISS principle and such):

    Mr. UB 3UB
    Legendary creature
    Eminence - When mr. UB is in your command zone or on the battlefield, draw a card at the beginning of your draw step.
    At the beginning of the first upkeep, you lose half your life, rounded up.
    Flying, Lifelink
    4/4

    Etc. The difference between it being an eminence ability instead of an emblem will only come up in corner cases and not matter 98% of the time.

    As for the tri-color partners: the current two color partners are a little on the weak side, no reason why this could not also be the case for 3 color variants.

    EDIT: to add to my commander wish lists: partners that can meld. And partners that can partner with a non-partner commander . Let's say the sidekicks. something like:

    Green sidekick 2G
    Legendary creature - Etc.
    Green Sidekick can be your second commander. If it is, Green Sidekick and your other commander cost you an additional G to cast.
    Trample. Other creatures you control get +1/+1 and gain trample.
    3/3

    It would also allow you to add colors to an existing commander, solving two goals at once Smile
    Posted in: Commander (EDH)
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