Bitter Ordeal is more Aristocrats than storm.
My storm deck (a bit unorthodox) is Animar, Soul of Elements. Storm is just one thing it does: Aluren, Horned Kavu or Shrieking Drake, and any storm win con (or Purphoros, God of the Forge).
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Mar 20, 2019Island Sanctuary is my pillow of choice, but it depends on your ability to draw cards outside of the draw step, so (of course) I never use it in monowhite or even Boros.Posted in: Commander (EDH)
If you really want to screw with players, follow up Sanctuary with Mystic Decree (if in blue) or somehow cheat out Sandwurm Convergence (if in green); in the latter case, you'll think of something, since white has Replenish and Academy Rector and green has Eureka, Hypergenesis, Genesis Wave...Regardless of what you do, this makes it so no one can attack you. You will want Fountain Watch, Sterling Grove, or Greater Auramancy, though.
Mar 20, 2019Posted in: Commander (EDH)Quote from toctheyounger77 »Would be lotoi, TBH. Greek. Though apparently it's probably loaned from a Semitic language, likely Phoenician. (Compare Hebrew lot, myrrh.) The Homeric lotus was believed to be a North African shrub, from which a kind of wine could be made. The yogic sense is first attested in 1848. The Magic sense is attested in 1993, but refers to an older Robert E. Howard story, of a lotus which, unlike Homer's, induced terrible dreams which drove all but the most evil of souls mad with horror. (Which, given who REH hung around with, most likely means it showed the secrets of the universe.)
I was right now many years old when I learned all of this. The more you know.
Never realised HPL and REH hung out either. Two early giants of the fantasy fiction world.
Well, they more did correspondence, since Texas and Rhode "not really an" Island are a long way away. The third member of this group would be Clark Ashton Smith.
But yeah, "At the Mountains of Madness" mentions the Cimmerians, and REH borrowed HPL's monsters every now and then, and, true to the source material, they were never defeated; one could only flee.
And both REH and HPL have been Flanderized like a mother****er too!
Mar 19, 2019Posted in: Commander (EDH)Quote from toctheyounger77 »Yeah, most of the Loti (that's the plural now, I called it) offer, at bare minimum, good value. For 5 this needs to earn it's spot, but it's a decent rock in many builds. It's good to great value depending where it's used.
Would be lotoi, TBH. Greek. Though apparently it's probably loaned from a Semitic language, likely Phoenician. (Compare Hebrew lot, myrrh.) The Homeric lotus was believed to be a North African shrub, from which a kind of wine could be made. The yogic sense is first attested in 1848. The Magic sense is attested in 1993, but refers to an older Robert E. Howard story, of a lotus which, unlike Homer's, induced terrible dreams which drove all but the most evil of souls mad with horror. (Which, given who REH hung around with, most likely means it showed the secrets of the universe.)
Anyway, this is a staple for me. I've been diversifying my mana for the last few years, and this costs just 1 moar than Skyshroud Claim and gives me an additional mana, so it works out.
Mar 17, 2019Posted in: Commander (EDH)
That's not my point. A big reason for playing boardwipes (or symmetrical effects in general) is to hurt opponents more. If you don't have any creatures, see where I'm going?
Mar 17, 2019Most Gaea's Cradle players already run mana sinks, usually something like Ant Queen since, um, I'm already going wide. So yeah, that can't really be used as an example.Posted in: Commander (EDH)
I gave an example of the few cards for which functionality would arguably be improved (or restored to original function, or, you know, actually have functionality) by mana burn. And I guess The Fallen would be restored to its original flavor. But beyond that, why?
Mar 16, 2019Posted in: Commander (EDH)Quote from Lithl »
Or you'd simply do what Omnath decks already do, and include Winding Canyons, Vedalken Orrery, and Yeva, Nature's Herald. When Omnath gets killed you spend some of the floating mana to immediately re-cast him.
I was thinking more generally, TBH. Note that you can't do that with Upwelling, which is why it used to fall on my "This could almost be good." section of my personal Bad Card List. It's great, but it's a potential green Lich if you're not careful. When mana burn was removed, Upwelling was removed from that list.
Anyway, returning mana burn might make Power Surge and Citadel of Pain make sense, and it might make Braid of Fire and Mana Flare genuinely feel red again. But it's still more feeling than actual value.
Mar 16, 2019Posted in: Commander (EDH)
Four-card, four-color rococo combo is the best combo.
But seriously, I have to say, Leave is obviously good, and I'd play Chance if I had enough reason to play cards to double my card draw. But mostly, Leave is obviously good. I smash stone tablets over the heads of anyone who doubted.
Mar 16, 2019Posted in: Commander (EDH)
Added benefit (besides, you know, Dark Depths) is there are a cycle of snow taplands. If they already enter tapped from Into the North (and every non-Nature's Lore two-drop ramp spell), that makes them slightly less terribad.
Mar 16, 2019Posted in: SpeculationQuote from Faruel »
paladin8000 asked: Mark, can we get a taste of the commander 2019, at least the colors?
I tried licking one of them. I’m thinking peppermint. : )
Is this just Maro being Maro or does this mean something?
Peppermint could mean Green, Black?
I googled 'peppermint' and the first search result was from wikipedia 'Peppermint - Angel of Vengeance'.
Um, no. This is like Steven Universe fans looking for information on crystals from one of the OVER NINE THOUSAND New Age sites out there (all of which attribute different things to different rocks) for something, anything, because of a leak on (of all places) the Turner Classic Movies site. *cough*Smoky Quartz*cough* Basically, when Maro can't say something, he goes into Cloudcuckooland mode.
Also, I would've at least thought of peppermint as red and white.
Mar 15, 2019Posted in: The Rumor MillQuote from Simto »Am I the only one who finds it a bit annoying that the Chandra comic takes place after the war? Kinda like there's already a trailer out for a new spiderman movie taking place after End Game. other than it already spoiling the outcome, it kinda diminishes some of the stakes and build up knowing at least some of who survive.
And a Black Panther one. They were expecting Guardians, but then Roger Stone got James Gunn fired. But for those of us who remember the original Infinity Gauntlet event comic, Thanos is just the first act. Or first and second act, depending. But you may as well consider the trial of Adam Warlock in a sequel comic the fourth act then.
Which reminds me, of course people will die in WAR. It's an event comic. I think the only event comic that didn't have huge body counts was Secret Wars. I mean, the only major consequence of Secret Wars, besides confirmation that Marvel doesn't consider Magneto a villain, was that Spider-Man got a completely harmless new black suit.
And every one of them has a complicated backstory due to future fan fictions about them.
Is that the original event comic, or is the story of the Argo the original event comic?
Mar 15, 2019You need some answers to artifacts to play this. Probably some ways to topdeck things for your opponents.Posted in: Commander (EDH)
I could see it in Nekusar, the Mindrazer. Some direct damage, and while it doesn't trigger Nekusar (or Underworld Dreams or Spiteful Visions or Psychosis Crawler or The Locust God or Niv-Mizzet, the Firemind or Niv-Mizzet, Parun...), it adds one to the number of cards Teferi's Puzzle Box draws, one to the number of cards each wheel discards and draws, and one to the damage done by Sudden Impact/Gaze of Adamaro and Black Vise and Viseling, and one more card for Ebony Owl Netsuke. It also makes Maros (both the traditional and Ada varieties) bigger.
Mar 15, 2019Posted in: Commander (EDH)Quote from Intelman94 »When it says as long as it’s not a mana ability does that mean That if it produces mana you can’t copy it or you can’t copy it if it spends mana?
Mana abilities are either activated abilities which produce mana (except for planeswalker loyalty abilities, such as Xenagos, the Reveler's +1 or Koth of the Hammer's -2) or triggered abilities which produce mana and are triggered by the production of mana, e.g. Fertile Ground, Caged Sun.
Mana abilities cannot be responded to.
By the way, spells which produce mana, such as Dark Ritual, can be responded to, at least in this century.
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Sep 21, 2018Nothing's set in stone. Most likely at least some of the draft will be like Ixalan: There were no tribes in WU or BG, but that doesn't mean there weren't archetypes for those colors. You can probably do something with Esper evasion, even though neither Azorius nor Orzhov is making an appearance.Posted in: Articles
But any format with taplands at common will make me ask if I can go three or four colors in limited.
Aug 8, 2018Sounds about right. And yeah, Guardian Idol is the one I thought of, just because this is still a monored deck, meaning the entire game conspires to push you in a threat-heavy direction (because red control is "unfun" according to MaRo), just you're going more midrange than aggro.Posted in: Articles
By the way, I've been wondering, isn't it Calgary Wolf Pack? (Funny story, I know a guy who used to play for them who also plays Magic. His favorite card is...Lantern Kami. Seems a bit vanilla, but okay.)
Aug 6, 2018Another issue, when you're playing a lot of five or six CMC cards, there are seven in your deck if I counted correctly, is, the lack of ramp spells or mana dorks in red. Artifacts need to make up for it. But again, not too many, since they are neither threats nor answers.Posted in: Articles
Jul 28, 2018The EPONYMOUS Soul Warden and Soul's Attendant. (Sorry, that's a bit of a bugaboo of mine. "Titular" refers to a purely ceremonial title, e.g. a king or queen being a titular head of state, but is one of those words like "nimrod" or more recently "literally" where the malapropism has become an accepted use.)Posted in: Articles
Resplendent Angel could also be used in Commander. Lifegain decks are an obvious pick, but so are token decks (especially if you back it up with Soul Sisters or just plain Blood Artist and friends) and even possibly angel tribal, considering one swing with Baneslayer Angel or just giving Resplendent Angel a two-power boost (or double strike) triggers her. Hey, several other white cards on this list work!
Remorseful Cleric is an obvious addition to any Sun Titan package.
Sai, Master Thopterist has "Oh, look, another Mycosynth Lattice combowombo." But you don't even need that, not really. I'm sure this could work with the traditional Ashnod's Altar/Nim Deathmantle combo, just using Myr Battlesphere or Wurmcoil Engine. All you need then is a source of U.
Stitcher's Supplier is the cheap self-mill reanimator decks need.
Goblin Instigator is interesting. It's a Raise the Alarm which can be blinked or Titan'd or...why isn't this white and making soldier tokens again?
Runic Armasaur is just ridiculous in Commander. If not for how Wizards uses the subjunctive ("you may draw") for this kind of card draw, I could see some feel-bad moments here.
Amulet of Safekeeping is a bit of a trap in Commander. It's perfect against storm, and seems to be good against tokens, but between anthems and tokens' real strength, triggers, it's not as good as it looks. It does stop incompetent token decks, though. Still, storm is a greater threat than tokens.
Desecrated Tomb also triggers off persist and undying. Just putting another Solemnity/Melira, Sylvok Outcast combo out there.
Meteor Golem is an obvious Commander pick. It's just another way for black and red to cover their butts.
May 1, 2018It's not weak. I mean, let's look at it this way:Posted in: Articles
Balance I would have to say it's second only to Alpha/Beta in this, and for the same reason: Literally no one knew the medium, and it took a few years. You get cards like Mana Drain, Sylvan Library, Land Tax, Eureka, The Abyss, Nether Void...and Aisling Leprechaun, the eight or so cards that mention bands with other, Part Water, Visions, Great Wall (the whole cycle, but Great Wall is particularly egregious), some improved laces when we know the entire lace concept is less than useless now. And Wood Elemental.
Color pie It's probably not fair to complain about the color pie given that the mechanical color pie was in its embryonic state at this time. (tl;dr: Black and red can't destroy enchantments, white gets nearly all banding cards and green gets the rest...and that's about it.) So I won't.
Fun Now, keep in mind, I define "fun" very narrowly. Many of these cards I personally enjoy, but I can see how a new player might not. Acid Rain is a definite "not". Arboria as well. Living Plane could either be really fun or a real pain in the ass. Moat? Presence of the Master? The Tabernacle at Pendrell Vale? In the Eye of Chaos? Now, I'm a Stax player, so these "unfun" cards tend to be the bestest thing in the world to me as a member of Team Pain In The Ass, but they can vex new players. We just don't think about it because we teach new players with a subset of cards from Standard-legal sets (and, in a few months, a Core Set). Again, this is an early set thing: Naked Singularity was in Ice Age, so it's really around Mirage that things started tightening up; Tsunami, Flashfires, and Conversion all exist as a middle finger to blue, white, and red players respectively. (If they really want to see what eternal looks like, I let them barn a game of Commander between myself and similarly enfranchised players.)
Rules/memory issues These two basically mean "mindspace", so I'm putting them together. Laces are a factor. (Portal: Three Kingdoms has the same issue with sorceries which should be auras.) WotC Oracled a lot of these cards to make the memory issues irrelevant by adding counters. The other issue is rules issues. Poor Ivory Guardians only gives a bonus to creatures of the same name because the guardian creature type was discounted. Again, bands with other. How does Blood Lust stack with other toughness-lowering effects again? Bands with other's reminder text (per Oracle, since you'd have to drop to 4-point at least to put it on a card) reads like an epic poem. Equinox? Again, it was learning curve, and I'm far more tolerant of Legends than I am of the Humility/Opalescence cluster **** that took nearly a decade to resolve properly.
The set does gain a lot of points for flavor, though. And not just the eponymous legends. Frost Giant, Cosmic Horror, Nether Void, Planar Gate, Living Plane...These cards feel like fantasy tropes, either centuries old (Frost Giant) or ones that will soon turn 100 (Cosmic Horror).
Apr 30, 2018The island is called Avenant. They're known for their archers, but also their ballistae. (Yeah, apparently d' is either genitive, "of Avenant", or ablative, "from Avenant".)Posted in: Articles
I think a lot of it was still Early Set Weirdness. The designers didn't know what they were doing because, frankly, no one did. Trading card games as a medium had literally only existed since Alpha. The result is, just like Alpha, instead of A, B, and C cards, you have A+ cards and D cards. And you had complicated rules. (This is in an odd spot. You see, in a board game or a card game like bridge, you know what every piece is going to be, and in video games, the computer can help with rules weirdness, but in Magic, new game pieces are being invented all the time.)
Legends also gives us Thunder Spirit, which is actually a better case for abolishing the Reserved List than the usual case presented. (It would fit into a lot of limited environments.)
It is kinda funny that multicolor cards and the eponymous legends are now a 1 on the Storm Scale, but the two keyword mechanics are a 9 (It turns out "When CARDNAME becomes blocked, it gets +N/+N." or "When CARDNAME becomes blocked, it gets +N/+N for each creature blocking it." is more grokkable.) and, breaking the scale, an 11.
Apr 16, 2018With all the uncommon legendaries, and legendaries are more likely to be multicolored because 1) it allows them to be even further pushed, and 2) Commander (Visit EDHrec some time, compare the commanders of an archetype, you'll find a strong positive correlation between the number of colors and the number of decks, somewhat upset by a bias in favor of precons.), don't be surprised if you find yourself in three colors, especially since Abzan tokens is very much a thing in this set.Posted in: Articles
Mar 16, 2018I honestly thought the "hand size matters" idea was a good touch, especially given that every rare in the block was legendary. But I've always liked those sorts of variables. (Obviously we saw a similar thing with the graveyard in Odyssey block.)Posted in: Articles
As for a favorite, I like Descendant of Masumaro in multiplayer.
Mar 12, 2018hyalopterouslemur posted a message on Dominaria Spoiler Digest - Who's Who and What's What from the Release NotesYeah, we've had the "halcyon situtation" before with Sylvan Caryatid and Sylvan Library, though those were on completely different planes, and "sylvan" was never associated with any particular plane.Posted in: Articles
While we're here, what was the entire story with the Baron? I know Irini Sengir isn't his daughter and Grandmother Sengir isn't his grandmother. Are they even from Dominaria?
Mar 6, 2018I love the underlying theme of situational ethics:Posted in: Articles
Vraska only kills people if she needs to, or if they're evil (by her judgment).
Azor brings law to societies, and then says when they decay, that decadence is their own fault.
The Dusk Legion only kills unbelievers, or to extend their lifespans.
The Sun Empire doesn't kill their enemies, but they feed them to the dinosaurs.
Kumena considers it totally fine to claim the Immortal Sun for himself, so long as he's protecting it; the expression "power corrupts" doesn't exist on Ixalan, apparently.
The Brazen Coalition only raids the Dusk Legion, until they've learned of a weapon which can kill the Dusk Legion.
Torment may be "the black set", but the flavor feels the most philosophically black of any plane we've seen thus far.
Feb 18, 2018Homelands falls into the "vindicated by the future" file, IMO. Many of the better cards (Memory Lapse, Merchant Scroll, Primal Order) were simply reprinted in later sets. Then you have Digeridoo: There are good minotaurs now. I'm not saying a minotaur deck would be good because, well, it wouldn't, but it can bring out Boros Reckoner and Neheb, the Eternal.Posted in: Articles
Other cards have actually gotten worse. t2 Ritual out Sengir Autocrat used to pay for Hecatomb next turn. It still does, but there are better ways to get four creatures.
Feb 10, 2018There are actually some good cards in Fallen Empires.Posted in: Articles
Breeding Pit The original "one token a turn" card. It's no Bitterblossom, but it's not bad per se.
I loved the return of Goblin Grenade in M12, especially with Reverberate and Goblin Arsonist. *smiles at 11 damage for 3 mana*
It's not "good", but I should mention that Goblin Kites is oddly synergistic with Ball Lightnings.
Goblin War Drums needs no introduction.
Goblin Warrens turns your extra mana into more goblins, and gives you plenty of triggers. Synergy with Doubling Season too!
Hand of Justice just looks like he could be effective in a token deck.
High Tide is another one that needs no introduction.
Homarid Spawning Bed would be pretty funny with Scornful Egotist.
Hymn to Tourach is better early on than Whispers of Emrakul, but it doesn't matter in monoblack.
Mindstab Thrull also really good.
Night Soil. Just Night Soil.
Order of Leitbur and Order of the Ebon Hand were arguably better than their Alpha counterparts.
Thelonite Druid looks interesting.
So does Thelonite Monk.
Thelon's Chant could just be LOL. Or, for a Hapatra, Vizier of Poisons EDH deck.
Tourach's Chant is the other Hapatra card.
Vodalian Mage. Just any repeatable soft counter is probably good. I mean, there are other cards that can do this, two of which are actually playable in Commander.
There are also the Elvish Farmer-like cards, just since there are so many ways to produce saprolings now.
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