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The Magic Market Index for Oct 20, 2017
 
The Magic Market Index for Oct 13, 2017
 
The World of Kamigawa
  • posted a message on Random Card of the Day - Driver of the Dead
    This was in my wife's Mirri the Cursed Vamps Tribal deck at the very start, but it rarely did work. The deck had an artistocrat subtheme but rarely did things die often enough in the right order for this to matter. Now that we have even more extremely powerful Vamps in the 3-5 drop range, it's a tough sell. For a more grindy Vamps deck, however, I can see it, but that's limited to Anowon and sometimes Yehenni. I give it a 4/10 as even in deck where it shines it'll be amongst the weaker cards in the list.
    Posted in: Commander (EDH)
  • posted a message on Random Card of the Day - Driver of the Dead
    Quote from Hawk7915 »

    I imagine it might actually be 57 for a B/R deck; first we have removal spells that are just straight up 100% superior to this.



    Technically, using black mana makes them, by definition, not "strictly". Like, what if I just drew Necropotence and want to cast it the same turn I want to cast my removal spell? And Chaos Warp is right out unless you fateseal first. But yeah, there's so much good removal out there. At 3BB, you get Dictate of Erebos.

    So, this brings up the question: How many cards produce black tokens but aren't black themselves? There's eternalize and living weapon, obviously.

    Cellar Door is somewhat unreliable and weird, but I guess it's another way to use Ponder, if the old-fashioned way wasn't that much better.

    Cradle of the Accursed and Dunes of the Dead could go in a Sun Titan package. Speaking of white and lands, Dark Depths, now for white too!

    God-Pharoah's Gift, maybe?

    Havengul Runebinder exists, but you're not going to put it in a nonblack deck.

    Hour of Eternity? (Wow, Amonkhet gave me more than enough of these.)

    Hour of Promise is played a lot, but not as a desert package.

    Notorious Throng could actually fit in some sort of Izzet burn deck. Thank you, Random Card of the Day for giving me an interesting card. (And it doesn't exile itself!)

    Penumbra Bobcat, Penumbra Kavu, Penumbra Wurm, and Penumbra Spider, I guess? I mean, they're not bad cards, especially with populate, it's just, they're not all good either.

    Phyrexian Processor is good in decks headed by Trostani, Selesnya's Voice.

    Riftmarked Knight? Another "why" card. I guess it fills out a Sun Titan package. Also, look at Maro making too-complicated tokens.

    Rise from the Tides actually could be useful, maybe. I prefer Runechanter's Pike or Cognivore or Magnivore, though.

    Sarpadian Empires, Vol. VIII is another useful one. Mostly it's used with Riptide Laboratory to "fill out" your Bloom Tender, which is what we're using it for here. I have to say, Sarpadian Empires is better at it, but it still doesn't seem good, you know? But that's mostly because I'm usually using it in decks where I have access to green or white.

    Soul Separator? I guess if you really have a lot of chaff in your graveyard.

    Undead Alchemist is actually a card I haven't used much. It actually does look like some nice hate on dredge.

    And yes, I know, Nim Deathmantle also does what's needed, and might actually be playable.


    Good analysis, although I did intentionally use the words "superior" and not "strictly better" - I know it isn't strictly better, but again I can't imagine anyone with a straight face saying they're going to cut Dreadbore to run Dark Temper. I hadn't thought of Penumbra creatures or Rise from the Tides though; I can see an oddball GR or UR tokens deck considering this since their options for removal are otherwise so limited.

    Onto today's card - I have to marvel at this. Don't get me wrong; it is EXTREMELY bad, and would be bad even at 1R or even at Instant speed. At 1R instant it'd at least be okay in limited.

    What I marvel at is why it exists at all. "Make Mischief" is a great, evocative card name that doesn't describe at all what the card does. This card name could be on a Wild Ricochet/Shunt/Twincast clone, or a destructive spell, or even a temporary stealing effect. The flavortext barely holds it together. For the set it was in, I guess it fits for enabling Delirium as a "creature" that adds a Sorcery to your graveyard...but again, it is so low power it is barely worth considering in a draft, especially since Red wasn't a prime Delirium color. Seems a shame to waste a great name on a mediocre card.

    Not every card is for every format, but this card seems to be homeless. Perplexing Design Decisions/10.
    Posted in: Commander (EDH)
  • posted a message on Random Card of the Day - Driver of the Dead
    Quote from Hawk7915 »
    Quote from LouCypher »
    Dark Temper



    If you run a red deck that somehow makes black tokens this isn't bad removal. If you run RBx, there's roughly 57 better removal cards available.


    I imagine it might actually be 57 for a B/R deck; first we have removal spells that are just straight up 100% superior to this.



    Chaos Warp is in no way strictly better removal. I can't tell you how many times my opponent has flipped over a win con from me trying to remove something. It seems I am so damn unlucky that I have taken Chaos Warp out of all my decks. Also Dreadbore isn't very good at Sorcery speed.


    Dreadbore is still one mana less to ALWAYS kill a creature but also kill a 'walker if you need too. It isn't strictly better in a classical sense, as a multicolor card and a sorcery, but I don't think any reasonable person would ever be cutting Dreadbore for Dark Temper or even any of the other cards in my second box. For my money, I favor modality (the ability to hit more than one card type) and mana (removal needs to be tempo-positive in a bomby format like EDH) very highly.

    To each their own on Chaos Warp. It gets an auto-include stamp for me because I haven't had it spectacularly backfire on me too often, and also because in Rakdos your only out against stuff like Worship, Teferi's Moat, Sphere of Safety, Solitary Confinement, etc, etc, is this card or a ridiculously expensive card like Scour from Existence or an insanely narrow card like Apocalypse. I can certainly see decks that cut it if your meta doesn't feature so many crippling enchantments, but they are everywhere in mine.
    Posted in: Commander (EDH)
  • posted a message on Random Card of the Day - Driver of the Dead
    Quote from LouCypher »
    Dark Temper



    If you run a red deck that somehow makes black tokens this isn't bad removal. If you run RBx, there's roughly 57 better removal cards available.


    I imagine it might actually be 57 for a B/R deck; first we have removal spells that are just straight up 100% superior to this.



    Then we have a lost list of removal that isn't necessarily "Strictly" better since there will be numerous situations where Dark Temper wins, but on the whole I'd be more likely to include:



    Once we get too far beyond 3 mana, we start hitting a range where we can sledgehammer the whole board instead, and for a controlling RBx deck I'm likely to start using my slots on Damnation, Life's Finale, Rolling Earthquake, etc instead. I actually think this card is underrated in a super controlling, enchantment heavy deck (say, Mogis or Kaerevek), however. It is worse than those top four cards, but it isn't too noticeably worse than the next list of stuff.
    Posted in: Commander (EDH)
  • posted a message on Random Card of the Day - Driver of the Dead
    Archivist and Sea Gate Loremaster, as pointed out, do this better by having no timing restriction - Archivist costs 1 less, Oracle is a 1/3 and can go nutso if you run more allies. You are also in the slot of Azami, Lady of Scrolls which has "haste" for the effect if you can swing the triple blue cost, and she's sort of the gold standard for five mana card engine critters. For one more, Arcanis the Omnipotent is pure timmy goodness.

    So for Wizards, this is unplayable - Archivist and Oracle already see no play. For Pirates, there are so few Pirates in MTG (59 + changelings at this counting, and 16 are part Red) that it's at least worth considering but I imagine it doesn't stick in the deck long after Rivals of Ixalan, especially since Admiral Beckett Brass and Ramirez DePietro want to be aggressive and this is a slow durdling engine. It isn't the worst pirate in existence (Smuggler Captain takes that honor, at least outside of Cube/Draft), but it's pretty close so it'd be unusual to run it. It does have Foglio art for sweet synergy with Pietro though :).
    Posted in: Commander (EDH)
  • posted a message on Random Card of the Day - Driver of the Dead
    I understand why this is what it is for Limited, but it misses the mark in EDH. Even for tribal faeries, not a tribe historically known for mana-efficient bodies, this is in a CMC slot competing with Mistbind Clique, Sower of Temptation, Wydwen, the Biting Gale, Glen Elendra Liege, Glen Elendra Archmage, Faerie Artisans, and Faerie Harbinger. While this does something none of those things do, the thing it does is not really a thing you need in EDH (to kill small but targetable utility creatures). It's certainly not unplayable in a prototypical Faerie deck or U/B/x Flash deck, just gets edged out for more powerful creatures and more reliable removal.
    Posted in: Commander (EDH)
  • posted a message on Best Beginner-Friendly Mono Colored Commanders
    Quote from VidarThor »
    Mono U should be Arkanis. At lov power level / beginner just drawing a lot of cards is fun and mistakes are less punishing.

    Mono R should be Krenko. It is fun, goblins are fun. The timmy likes a big board. It is also very forgivven for mistakes as you can just re grow your army.

    I am unsure about the other two. I suppose the indestructable angel is very fun to play in a white ramp deck. A bit dangerush for other new oponents to face though.


    My concern is that I am not sure super tribal decks are THAT great for newbies since they are inordinately math heavy. Krenko scales exponentially, and having to track that those 1/1s are actually 3/3 Mountainwalk, Haste, First Strikes can make combat tedious. It gets worse if everyone is playing Tribal, and that same goblin player also needs to know that those elves are all 4/4 Trample Forestwalk Hexproofs. Depends on what we mean by new though. I am mostly thinking of the times we've had my still-in-school nieces and nephews pick up Mirri Vampires or Doran Treefolk and find themselves constantly making bad combat choices because the on-board complexity is out of control.
    Posted in: Commander (EDH)
  • posted a message on Best Beginner-Friendly Mono Colored Commanders
    Surprised to see no love for Talrand, Sky Summoner as a blue newbie commander. If you build everyone on a curve, you don't actually need to make it a Time Warp/hard control list - and new players love to draw cards, make drakes, and have fun.

    I agree that Kemba or a God (Oketra the True or Heliod, God of the Sun are the best bets for white, as they give a clear direction, but another option is Avacyn, Guardian Angel - cheaper than other Avacyns and allows for a defensive, pillow-fort type deck full of Angels which are sure to be a big hit for the newbie crowd.

    Posted in: Commander (EDH)
  • posted a message on Random Card of the Day - Driver of the Dead
    Quote from The_Hittite »
    *obligatory Nicolas Cage reference*


    Darn, ninja'd.

    In terms of playability...green is hard up for fliers, but I don't know if they are this hard up. I'd be unlikely to include this anywhere I think. 2 damage is meaningless in most games and a flying shade is not a winning card in this format.
    Posted in: Commander (EDH)
  • posted a message on Best big green (or red) creatures?
    My personal top 10 best 6+ Drops (or X-mana creatures) for...

    Mono-Green:
    1. Avenger of Zendikar - an army in a can, matches up well with any ramp spells.
    2. Craterhoof Behemoth - I don't actually own one, but the power level is obvious.
    3. Kamahl, Fist of Krosa - Extremely powerful lategame engine - very threatening if you can untap with this.
    4. Genesis Hydra - flexible, powerful value card.
    5. Soul of the Harvest - red/green is hard up for card advantage. A respectable threat that is very dangerous with blink/self-bounce effects.
    6. Vorinclex, Voice of Hunger - It draws a lot of hate for a reason, but if it sticks it is extremely hard to lose.
    7. Ulvenwald Hydra - ANY land is strong. This scales well.
    8. Bane of Progress - metagame dependent but potentially sick.
    9. Pathbreaker Ibex - a very underrated gem, if you can untap with this (or give it haste) it can blow people up out of nowhere.
    10. Greenwarden of Murasa - body is mediocre, but it is a powerful effect to be sure.
    HM: Thunderfoot Baloth (I consider this just worse than Craterhoof and Pathbreaker but still good), Primordial Sage and Woodland Bellower, (largely outclassed by Greenwarden, Genesis Hydra, and Soul for advantage but any port in a storm), Terastodon (one a king, now a filler), Protean Hulk (powerful combo card, but not the sort of thing to just jam in any G/x list), and a loooong list of cards that just beatdown (Primordial Hydra, Carnage Tyrant, Worldspine Wurm, Stonehoof Chieftain, Siege Behemoth, Rampaging Baloths)

    As the color of fat monsters, green has an embarrassment of riches when it comes to powerful finishers.
    RED:
    1. Balefire Dragon - A solid flier with a devastating effect if it can connect.
    2. Hellkite Tyrant - the fail rate here is a 6/5 flying trample, and sometimes the "beat down with 6 power threats" plan works out in EDH. The best case scenario is that you give this haste, crack the artifact player, and proceed to just win the game (either incrementally with all their toys or instantly with enough of them).
    NOTE: unlike Green, I think the quality drops off dramatically here.
    3. Inferno Titan - a bit worse outside of mono-Red, but this can still be a powerful threat.
    4. Scourge of the Throne - under ideal circumstances this can be super deadly.
    5. Knollspine Dragon - not for every list, but in an aggressive ramp deck this can be a great card drawing engine and a meaty threat.
    6. Molten Primordial - In the right deck, this can end the game on the spot - remove three blockers, gain four attackers. With a way to loop it or double up on it, or a way to sacrifice the stolen goods, it gets nasty fast.
    7. Combustible Gearhulk - gets better in heavy decks or decks that can abuse its artifact status. While punisher cards are bad, if you are able to capitalize on this effect it can be really good. And again, fail rate is a 6/6 beat stick.
    8. Hellkite Charger - a reasonable beater that goes infinite with Sword of Feast and Famine, Bear Umbra, Nature's Will. Worth including in any deck that can assemble the combo, or that cares about extra combats, or that wants Dragons (which is a fair number of red decks, all in all).
    9. Utvara Hellkite - If it swings once, even as the only dragon in your deck, it was #value. With enough dragons and haste enablers it's a deadly endgame.
    10. Bogarden Hellkite - Not for every deck, but the flexibility of the card can't be denied.

    For multi-color, I think that Omnath, Locus of Rage is incredible. For colorless, there's always Wurmcoil Engine and Steel Hellkite and Duplicant.

    There aren't too many heavy hate cards. I'd consider Scavenging Ooze as a way to fight graveyard decks.
    Posted in: Commander (EDH)
  • posted a message on Random Card of the Day - Driver of the Dead
    I started learning to play when Saga came out, and remember being tickled by the sheer Value of this card even as a noob. It's hard to imagine why this is only played in 343 decks on EDHRECS - it is effectively 5 mana to "Draw a card", but possibly it also nets you a huge mana discount. Obviously the fact you can't stack the deck and cheat with stuff is a hit against it, but I know that for the good of all of us (except the ones who are dead), I will be digging out my old copies of this bad boy and adding them to a few non-Blue decks that need to dig deeper. For science!

    EDIT: Seriously, I am so sad I forgot about this card. In addition to being good value, it is also a Portal-creating artifact with "Aperture" in its name! I mean, who doesn't love the Aperture Science song? Heartless monsters, that's who.
    Posted in: Commander (EDH)
  • posted a message on Random Card of the Day - Driver of the Dead
    I want to love this, as Torment is one of my favorite sets and one of the few I own a full set of, but as folks have said it hasn't aged well. For pure nostalgia it's a 10/10, but for power the power creep has been real and even 5 years ago this thing was already outgunned. Traditionally a midrange-y monoblack deck runs what, five or six six-drops? I did think about it in my Rakdos, Lord of Riots list (since he effectively "pays for himself" with Rakdos out and that deck runs an above-average number of six drops) but even there it was just too weak compared to cards that are more resilient (Wurmcoil Engine) or that generate more value (Oblivion Sower, Ink-eyes, Servant of Oni, Kokusho, the Evening Star, Combustible Gearhulk, Duplicant, Harvester of Souls, Massacre Wurm, Triskelion, Inferno Titan)
    Posted in: Commander (EDH)
  • posted a message on Random Card of the Day - Driver of the Dead
    10 years ago, at the dawn of EDH, a "strictly better" Mahamoti Djinn probably would have been a format staple. Nowadays he's just a bit too ponderous.

    I do intend to build a "Te-morph Frontier" deck and I'm sure I'll jam this guy, but I doubt he'll be the best card in the deck. That artwork sure is Raymond Swanland/10 though.
    Posted in: Commander (EDH)
  • posted a message on Random Card of the Day - Driver of the Dead
    This is run in 59 decks on EDHREC, and when you think about it that's a bit low - there are tons of INSANE lands in EDH but even stealing a swamp from an opponent is a power play in the midgame. It's not a staple, but considering how hard up red can be for card advantage and ramp it ought to see more play. I think I prefer Pillage and Aftershock as more versatile answers to broken lands, but controlling red lists would do well to keep this in mind.
    Posted in: Commander (EDH)
  • posted a message on Random Card of the Day - Driver of the Dead
    Assuming it is in color, I'd always take Forbidden Alchemy first and at this mana, I'd probably rather pay one more to run Fact or Fiction. While this does have potential to draw more, it requires a very specific deck, it is only sorcery speed, and I can't take whatever card I want. That being said, I think it's a surprising playable if you are in the market for this. You get to look at five cards, draw two, and mill three-four. There really is no card occupying a similar space - Strategic Planning is probably also better but also just draws one. Catalog, Frantic Search, Thirst for Knowledge and Compulsive Research are also similar and probably overall better, but discarding isn't quite the same as milling and you don't dig quite as deep. That we are comparing this to some of the best instants of all time puts it in surprising company, and for any deck that doesn't have Black in the identity (Kruphix, Riku, most Izzet Spellslingers) it is at least worth thinking about.
    Posted in: Commander (EDH)
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