Hey everyone. Ratings are from C- to A+. Anything under a C- is unplayable and thus not included. C- to C+ are reserved for the most casual of tables, B- to B+ are archetype staples at more competitive tables, and A- to A+ are general MP all-stars.
In order to evaluate cards better, I will be doing them in name order, so there's less of a chance to overrate cards because you're seeing cards of the same color all in a row, thus inflating value ("Hey, I think this card will really supplement this card! B-!")
I'm quite low on this card, as we all know you need to pay 5 for X (for Gray Merchant of Asphodel). 8 mana cards will rarely reach the A zone, and I think there's better cards than this that do the same thing (Living Death...). There's something to be said about having the access to the extra land in a greedy black deck, so there's a small chance this becomes a no-brainer include in black decks, like Castle Locthwain. Still, I have a hard time seeing how this is any better than the Castle.
Akiri, Fearless Voyager
This card has a lot going for it, and I'm pretty excited to see it played at casual tables. It'll be hard to get a big payoff on turn 3, but in general it'll be nice to have sitting on the back lines in any casual equipment deck. The activated ability might actually be better than the first ability, as indestructible is quite good when you're a white deck playing Wrath of God.
I think this card is a lot weaker than it looks at first glance, as even Ulvenwald Hydra will get you something before it gets wrathed. I would say that this card is pretty bad when you're limited to one land a turn, and having to rely on Azusa, Lost but Seeking or something similar is not going to end well at anything but the most casual of tables.
Angel of Destiny
Believe me when I say this is better than Baneslayer Angel in multiplayer (which is not saying a lot). This card gives you the ability to bypass players with strong defenses and hit the weaker player, without outright killing them. Then, once you're at a comfortable life total, you can nuke the stronger player out of orbit. However, this card costs a hefty 5 mana. I don't see this in any competitive deck but it'll be fun to mess around with.
If you're in a meta where Sun Droplet is good (surprisingly it's a pretty good card at casual tables) then I implore you to try this card. It's quite slow but will churn out a nice stream of cats.
Branchloft Pathway, etc
Dual lands will forever be good. These aren't amazing but will get the job done if you have a lot of them from opening Zendikar Rising packs or something.
I think people really underrate the "board-spam-then-pump" strategy in MP. This is also repeatable, scales with fetchlands and multiple Jerbas, and is in the color with great tokenspam. Tokens aren't a terrible strategy, but the jury's still out whether or not you'll actually play this in the deck. However, I personally believe it's more powerful than Cathar's Crusade, which is too slow for my tastes.
I have played Pyroclasm before, and I'm not really sure this is better than that.
Woah. Hello. I really like this card if you're in a ramp-heavy meta (which is an ever-popular MP strategy). In fact, I think that if you're jamming the classic Simic/Temur/etc ramp deck, you should put this card in simply just to get the leg up in the mirror. It even replaces itself so you might as well just play four and forget about it. One time out of 50 it'll lose you the game by giving your opponent more Landfall triggers, but I really believe that "A land on the 'field is worth two in the hand" so play this thing.
A wise man once said, "Making friends with the most powerful player is the best MP strategy, don't even argue with me".
I'm going to call this "Zendikar Siege" after the Outpost Siege cycle. Those cards are quite good for the C range, so this will be around there. Sit back and let the kitties fly.
I will be jamming a deck full of Wastes, Basalt Monoliths, and Sundering Titans. I think that the colorless/artifact stax/Eldrazi spam archetype is alive and well, and this card as a 5 mana mana doubler is quite powerful. The lifegain is marginal but I'm sure the infinite mana from the Basalt Monolith loops will ease the pain.
Hear me out. Cloudpost decks need blue mana but also sometimes don't need any mana at all. Copying a Wurmcoil Engine is a game winning play, and sometimes you just run out of card slots. This is where this guy comes in. I'm not sure how well ETB tapped will work out for you, but in a MP game, it happens, and you might as well get 4 free Clones out of it. This is one of the more powerful flippy cards from the set, and it's worth a look.
Grakmaw, Skyclave Ravager
This card as a standalone 3/3 that makes a 3/3 on death is actually pretty good, and only gets better in the counters archetype. It's worth looking at, even if it'll grow quite slowly.
I'll be trying this card out in big red archetypes (along with Leyline Tyrant below) and think it's another card along with Glasspool Mimic that you can play in your slow decks, replacing 4 basics, so you can access a powerful finisher later in the game. However, this one in particular is win-more, as if you have a powerful creature you're willing to launch, you're probably close to winning anyways.
This card may actually be quite playable, as Braid of Fire is an uber-powerful card that requires a strong foundation. 4 mana is a lot for a competitive deck, but being able to play this card when your Braid is popping off for 10+ mana may be a great power play. I'm not sure about this card because it seems slow, but if you slam this late game and it gets immediately killed, it might be able to take a player down with it.
Linvala, Shield of Sea Gate
Pretend the 5 lines of text between "flying" and "Sacrifice Linvala" don't exist and you'll get a pretty decent card for MP. Saving your creatures' bacon is always an amazing ability as it allows you to jam Wrath of God in your white decks and still keep up the pressure. I think this card is great. Don't try and build a Party deck though, as a) it's not going to happen and b) the payoff isn't that great here
Awesome reprint. I don't need to say much about this guy.
I can see this card being great, since some MP games go long and you'll get the payoff a lot of the time. Solid card to slot into your slow blue decks.
Moraug, Fury of Akoum
This bad boy comes hot off of Basalt Monolith like nobody's business. Pair it with Inferno Titan for an absolute beating. Getting two or three additional combat phases off of this can wipe the table in a single turn. It's a lot of mana, but for a card that can OTK giving the correct circumstances, I have to give it at least a B.
Nahiri, Heir of the Ancients
The OG Nahiri planeswalker was played in the equipment deck, and this is one mana cheaper. I like cards that can bypass you large amounts of mana, so jamming this with Colossus Hammer or even Batterskull or a Sword will be a game-winning line. Not sure if the Equipment deck is A range, but it's a staple in that deck.
Sea Gate Restoration
Unlike the other Mythic-Mega-Lands, this one actually is pretty good. You really only need to play one of these to make it good, so I don't mind jamming 4 and playing the other 3 as lands. That's why I think this one is the better of the bunch-- you don't feel like you need to hold it, and it'll help you refill your hand after playing the other ones as lands.
Appreciate the reviews, always love seeing people's takes on new cards. That being said I think that you're overrating Leyline Tyrant and Nighthawk Scavenger. Both are essentially unplayable in my mind. I also think that you're way too low on the Bolt lands and many of the spell lands like Bala Ged Recovery. Agadeem's Awakening is bonkers and I'm buying 4 asap. Monoblack Devotion isn't the only Black deck on the market. It's very easy to build around cards like Stitcher's Supplier, Fiend Artisan and Gorging Vulture that can abuse lands like Phyrexian Tower, Crypt of Agadeem and Agadeem's Awakening to provides some amazing mid-to-lategame value. You're also looking at it the wrong way when you say "you can play Living Death instead" because it's an "addition" as opposed to a "replacement." I think that all of the Bolt lands are amazing and that they'll see play in multiplayer formats like EDH for decades to come.
Otherwise I can't stress enough how broken spell lands like Bala Ged Recovery are (especially in slower/fair metas). Early game it's a land and lategame it buys back your best spell for reuse. It's absolutely perfect card and I like it way better than things like Regrowth which was a Vintage BANNED card at one point. Whereas Regrowth can be weak/useless early on this card is never dead in the developing stages of the game and later on it's just another copy of your best spell. The card is insanely good.
I'll echo the Bolt lands being really staples. The opportunity cost to run them is very low and the upside of having an extra spell late game is insane.
I haven't tested in MP games yet, but if the spell lands are as good as they are in draft, then wow. Narrow effects you don't necessarily want to use a slot on (like Threaten or Fling) become "free" (Kazuul's Fury and Song-Mad Treachery). Sure the rate is worse than both an untapped land or the actual card, but you get to do both in one slot.
I also think that Soul Shatter is a decent removal spell since it likely hits everyone's best creature and is instant speed.
I’m here to amend my statements. Played a ton of draft on Arena and WOW, the flip cards are nutty. The blue one that digs for spells and the green Regrowth are for sure staples for years to come, and I was even impressed with the black menace Rogue one and the white protection one for MP games. There’s no reason not to play as many as you can, especially since you can protect slow starts with politics.
I think that the bolt lands are also 100% necessary, they’re all actually quite good. I severely underestimated the power of these lands without actually playing with them. Once you start playing cards that bounce lands (Karoos finally playable?) or stuff like Tilling Treefolk, you can just never miss a land drop again.