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  • posted a message on [[Official]] Unreleased and New Card Discussion
    I was pretty excited for the new Mox at first until I realized the best case scenario of having an extra mana rock on Turns 1-2 will never happen with it, when I actually care about having it :/
    Posted in: Commander (EDH)
  • posted a message on Orzhov spot removal choices
    As the player with the resident Ayli primer, I figured I'd step in to add my 2 cents.

    I would never play Despark over Utter End, Anguished Unmaking or Vindicate. I don't like the condition that the target must have a 4CMC or greater on Despark. It's easy to be tricked into thinking it's a good card because it only costs WB, but it's far too inconsistent for my tastes. Outside of a tokens build, Orzhov is not a color combination that works fast. That is why I don't mind the 4CMC for Utter End. Orzhov is a slow roll, building up incremental value until it snowballs into an engine that is too hard to stop. I'd rather utter end Scavenging Ooze and stop my graveyard from being eaten, or Eternal Witness to stop recursion shenanigans, than sit with a 2CMC card in my hand that can't hit half the potential problems on the board.

    I'll gladly pay 1 more than I do for a Vindicate to exile something, because there is so much recursion in the format that exiling threats is one of the best things you can do. But those threats aren't always 4CMC and above. Sometimes they're Cloudstone Curios, or Ashnod's Altars and other 2-3 mana sac outlets or engines that you don't want them to be able to get back. I run both Anguished Unmaking and Utter End and Vindicate because 1.) depending on other people having good threat assessment is a liability, and 2.) the ability to surgically remove basically any target is an effect worth some redundancy. I'd still have Vindicate over this as a way to easily take out Maze of Ith, Volrath's Stronghold, Gavony Township, Gaea's Cradle, Itlimoc, Cradle of the Sun etc. on top of any other target without Indestructible that it can hit. Costing 1-2 mana less than the existing options does not make it worth it, when it excludes so many important targets.

    Angel of Despair aside, there is Archon of Justice, Return to Dust, False Prophet, Ashen Rider, Mangara of Corondor/Angel of Serenity/Fiend Hunter + sac outlets. Orzhov doesn't have a lack of ways to permanently flat out exile various things of the entire spectrum of CMC. Despark is frankly outclassed and overrated.

    I don't even get started on those running Profane Procession.

    Edit: I'll also clarify I'm not considering cEDH because cEDH isn't how the vast majority of people play Commander, and it's not like Ayli is a cEDH-worthy Commander. So, I'm not sure how what place cEDH discussion has here.
    Posted in: Commander (EDH)
  • posted a message on Ayli, Eternal Pilgrim: What Is Dead May Never Die
    Hey y'all. With Modern Horizons being previewed, I wanted to stop by and talk about War of the Spark. I have a few updates to my build in the main post that I'll be posting separately here in a bit, as well as my thoughts on dealing with cards like Selvala's Stampede Smile For right now, let's talk about that crazy Planeswalker set!

    War of the Spark Set Review!

    As always, I'll only be mentioning ones that are particular interest, here, rather than looking at each card in the set. Not even everything listed here is an auto-include or worth heavy consideration, but can at least be a talking point.

    white mana White white mana

    God-Eternal Oketra - What an amazingly powerful card! For 5-mana, a Double Strike, 3/6 that keeps coming back is already crazy enough. Add in her 1st triggered ability and it's just insane. I'm actually testing God-Eternal Oketra right now, and the additional board pressure has been pretty fantastic. 4/4 bodies are hard to deal with outside of board wipes, and Ayli can recover well from those. If you're running cards like Phyrexian Reclamation or Athreos, God of Passage, every creature you return to your hand threatens to come with a 4/4 vigilance Zombie in addition to whatever card you got back to cast. Absolutely stunning card worth trying!

    black mana Black black mana

    Bolas's Citadel - I just wanted to mention it here because it's obviously one of the power house cards in the set. It unfortunately really doesn't work that well here. We're already paying a chunk of life to other effects, and many of the cards in the deck that we use for ETB/death triggers are on the higher end of converted mana costs. This card isn't exactly for us.

    Command the Dreadhorde - Alternatively, there's Command the Dreadhorde which can target both Creatures AND Planeswalkers. At 6-mana it's rather expensive, but could easily piece together a winning board state from our own graveyards and others'. It's worth a look, especially when played alongside cards like Glacial Chasm or other ways to prevent taking damage for that turn.

    Dreadhorde Invasion - Comparable to Bitterblossom this is not. For us, this is simply sac fodder. At the coast of 1 life each turn, it's not particularly appealing, especially because if you do want sac fodder you're better off going wide than tall.

    Finalie of Eternity - This is one of my favorite cards in the set! Unfortunately it's not an Instant, but if you need to take care of an aggressive board state early in the game without spending a board wipe, this can be a really good way of doing so. The flexibility is great, even with the secondary effect of pumping 10 mana into it aside. The final part of the spell is icing on the cake, but mana that we can easily generate in the later part of the game thanks to synergies with Ashnod's Altar.

    God-Eternal Bontu - The second God-Eternal we're looking at is also pretty decent. A 5/6 body with Menace is nothing to laugh at, but what I love about Bontu is she can turn mana rocks and excess lands into card advantage in the late game. She's not an autoinclude by any means because there is a decent amount of card advantage already available to us, but she certainly is worthy of consideration.

    Kaya's Ghostform - One could look at this and compare it to Angelic Renewal or Gift of Immortality. The down side of this compared to Angelic Renewal is that you need a target to put it on, and can't simply cast it and have it out on the battlefield ready and waiting. There are very few Planeswalkers worth considering for Ayli, so the ability to target Planeswalkers isn't too relevant. Overall it'd be hard to justify taking anything else out of the deck to put in Kaya's Ghostform.

    Liliana, Dreadhorde General - Speaking of the very few Planeswalkers that are worthy of putting in Ayli, this Liliana may well be one of them. Her static ability is very useful to us, and one of the only cards out there that doesn't specify "non-token Creature" to draw your card. Making a blocker or more sac fodder with her +1 is pretty average, but her -4 causing everyone to sacrifice two creatures is brutal for opponents while we hardly flinch. If you get her -9, it's a Cataclysm, though you should generally never assume you'll get a Planeswalker's ultimate. She is worth a try, though her 4BB mana cost has her competing with a lot of other things we want to be doing with the deck at that stage.

    Liliana's Triumph - This is a pretty decent removal spell early on in the game that gets around Indestructible, Shroud and Hexproof. It's potentially worth considering at 1B and at Instant speed, but I find it really hard to see a card in the deck I'd pull for this, as targeted permanent removal is much more important.

    Massacre Girl - I'll admit that this is a fun card with a really fun effect. The problem, though, is that you want to wait for her to get enough triggers to clear the board. Massacre Wurm she is not, as she provides no benefit from killing the creatures she kills. Really, if you want to kill the board, you either want to just kill it cleanly with an actual board wipe, but at least get some bonus for doing so. While a cute card, she unfortunately really doesn't do enough.

    W/B mana Multicolor W/B mana

    Cruel Celebrant - Here we have another version of Zulaport Cutthroat. I'm actually replacing Blood Artist in all of my decks with Cruel Celebrant for a couple reasons. Although Blood Artist triggers off of opponent's Creatures dying as well, the triggers from it and cards like it are mostly from my own sac engines running off. The second reason is that I prefer Zulaport and Celebrant due to them not targeting and hitting each opponent at the same time. No one can give themselves protection or hexproof and them be untargetable with these.

    Sorin, Vengeful Bloodlord - I don't have much to say about the newest Sorin, unfortunately. The truth is that he doesn't do enough. His static ability only applies during our own turn. If you're still playing Sorin, Grim Nemesis or trouble with life in the late game and can swing in with our big fliers, he could be worth having on the board for that. Sometimes. But his +2 is unfortunately very weak, and his -X is costly when we have so many amazing reanimation options, as it is.

    Untap Lands Untap

    Blast Zone - This card is up for debate. On one hand, Ayli is very hungry for colored mana. In almost any scenario, I'd rather have colored mana than colorless. I already run a ton of utility lands, so this would have to be put in at the cost of replacing something else. It's something to do every turn with extra mana before your turn wheels back around, though, and threatens opponents and makes them think twice about playing combo pieces or certain cards. It may well be worth trying in place of a redundant effect like Kor Haven.

    Emergence Zone - Despite a certain podcast duo constantly harping about Vedalken Orrery, I have refused to run it in any of my decks. A 4-mana do-nothing card when it enters the battlefield is not my cup of tea, and when I did try to run it in my decks, I often found that it sat in my hand because I didn't want to tap out to play it, or there was something way more effective I could be doing, instead. This goes not just for Ayli, but any deck I've played it in. What I have done, however, is add Emergence Zone to every deck I play, because flashing spells out of no where in the late game can easily set up for a win on my upcoming turn. This is something I highly recommend trying, because it only takes a land slot, rather than a spell slot. What I said above about Blasting Zone and the amount of utility lands I run holds true, but the potential for blowing out opponents at flash speed from a Land slot is far too good to pass up!
    Posted in: Multiplayer Commander Decklists
  • posted a message on Urza, Lord High Artificer
    I actually don't think he's going to be any worse than optimized Jhoira, Weatherlight Captain decks. Both become extremely powerful the more Artifacts you can cast, but after he we spoiled I threw a deck together and tested him with some friends and honestly he wasn't as bad as he seems just looking at the card. There's balance in the fact that he's Mono-U. If you want to storm off with him, you have to balance having enough Artifacts to do that while trying to protect him from removal, or your other Artifacts for that matter. He could come out as early as Turn 2 with basically nothing to do with him in extremely optimized decks, or Turn 3 and cast one or two free spells in the VERY UTMOST best case scenario. He doesn't stop others from playing the game or responding. And while he can be built as Stax as others have mentioned, that archetype is relatively uncommon in the greater picture of the Commander community.
    Posted in: Commander Rules Discussion Forum
  • posted a message on Cassius Marsh 5/20/19 Previews Fists of Flame and Abominable Treefolk
    Quote from Creedmoor »
    Is it just me or does it seem like they turned snow lands into a cash grab when they really just should be... idk... available to players? Full Art Snow Lands sounds expensive to me.

    Long story short, I want to play that Treefolk but I doubt I will get a playset of lands to go with it due to the price.

    This just sounds tinfoil hat more than anything. Modern Horizons is a print-to-demand set with 36 packs to a box. There's going to be ample amounts of Snow Lands to go around. It's not like Masters sets that are 24-packs to a box that retail at $300 MSRP (not that we have MSRP now), and a ton of it is going to be opened because it's over 85%+ new cards only available in the set. There's nothing "cash grabby" about it, but people sure do like that buzzword a lot.
    Posted in: The Rumor Mill
  • posted a message on Oathbreaker (60 card, Planeswalkers as Commanders)
    I kind of want to build a deck for this with Jace, the Mind Sculptor+Tunnel Vision or Narset, Parter of Veils+Windfall in my Command Zones to prove the absurdity of having a "signature spell" in the Command Zone alongside Planeswalker as a Commander. It's really unfortunate that The Command Zone podcast gave this a large boost in attention, because it's frankly a silly idea for a format. Really tired of hearing about these riffs on Commander every few months, the subsequent begging of content creators and everyone to pay it attention and the slowly dying bandwagon that results afterwards.
    Posted in: Variant Commander
  • posted a message on Narset, Parter of Veils
    She is fine, for the reasons stated. Plenty of cards exist that have abilities similar to Leovold, and they aren't Leovold. Commander is not Vintage, Legacy or Modern.
    Posted in: Commander Rules Discussion Forum
  • posted a message on Will & Rowan Kenrith - Sparks of Ice and Fire (Superfriends)
    Great thread here, darrenhabib! Smile I've been desperately trying to find a deck to fit the twins into, but its been very hard to find a place where they fit well. I've never been a fan of the more popular Superfriend jam-everything-and-a-Doubling-Season decks, but this looks like a lot fun and I think I may just kick around building a similar list!
    Posted in: Multiplayer Commander Decklists
  • posted a message on Dralnu, Lich Lord - Control & Reanimation
    Woop. Apologies for missing your more-recently-active thread for Dralnu! Figured I could post/continue our discussion over here for War of the Spark since you're actively updating, still!

    I haven’t seen Jenn around for a little while, but I know she said life was getting pretty busy.

    For my build, I’m super psyched to grab a copy of God-Eternal Kefnet and Narset’s Reversal. Both are super solid auto adds here.

    Bolas’s Citadel I could see a place for as a storm finisher. It’s undoubtedly a strong card. I’m not sure if I’ll run a copy here myself, but I do try to stay a little shy of straight combo. Narset, partner of veils I like as a semi-leovold draw restriction. The amount of wheeling I do is not insignificant, so it’d make thing a lot more unilateral.

    Liliana, Dreadhorde General I like, but I’m not sure if I like it here. The static ability will go wanting g a lot for what’s a fairly creature light build, so any value you get from her will come from her abilities. Which are strong, but for 4BB I question if it’s worth it.

    Command the Dreadhorde I really like, and I’d look to fit a copy in here. Likewise with Finale of Eternity - you need to decathlon cast it to get enough value from it, but I can see that happening here fairly easily.

    Deliver unto Evil doesn’t seem strong enough to me. Without a Bolas walker, and as a one time affair, it just needs to do a little more.

    As for other new releases, I like Spark Double, but I’m not sure it’s better here than Clever Impersonator. Bond of Revival has the haste that Zombify and Rise from the Grave have always missed. Massacre Girl could be devastating, but I’m not sure it fits here well enough. All in all, there’s a lot of goodies from this set for Dralnu, and I think you’ve picked out most of the real gems.

    I tend to agree with your assessments on the cards mentioned. It's going to be interesting finding a spot for Command the Dreadhorde and Finale of Eternity.
    Posted in: Multiplayer Commander Decklists
  • posted a message on Dralnu, Two Parts Control, One Part Reanimator
    It's been a while since there's been any activity here, but I'm building Dralnu and this had the most recent discussion back in March. War of the Spark has provided some crazy good Dimir cards to try out for control.

    I'm building a similar list, but I intend to try:

    God-Eternal Kefnet
    Narset, Parter of Veils
    Ashiok, Dream Render
    Blast Zone

    Debating on:

    Narset's Reversal
    Bolas's Citadel
    Command the Dreadhorde
    Deliver Unto Evil
    Finale of Eternity
    Liliana, Dreadhorde General

    I'm curious what y'all think is worth putting in. Ashiok and Narset are powerful, even though they aren't an Instant or Sorcery. Bolas's Citadel is a ridiculously easy way for Control to stay on top of the game by using life as a resource. Finale of Eternity and Command the Dreadhorde are pretty powerful reanimation/removal spells. Deliver Unto Evil is a reverse Fact or Fiction. Liliana, Dreadhorde General seems like an amazing late game card for the deck.
    Posted in: Multiplayer Commander Decklists
  • posted a message on [Rules Tinkering] TEST: Sparked Commander
    Can we please stop beating this dead horse?
    Posted in: Commander Rules Discussion Forum
  • posted a message on Food Chain
    I've only ever seen it played by people using cEDH decks. Never seen it outside of that handful of players at any of the stores I've gone to. Same way I think I've played someone using Flash Hulk maybe once since Protean Hulk was unbanned, but that was in a competitive group. With that in mind, I can't say I agree with Food Chain being banned or really even considered. It has a very specific purpose to a couple decks only usually played in competitive circles, outside of which it's generally not played. Ultimately, if anything, Food Chain is a play group power level issue that is easier to discuss with that player/group and comes with a certain expectation or conclusion. It's much different to the the Recurring Nightmare example, where that card could easily go in almost any Black deck and become ubiquitous for it's power level. In other words, Food Chain is confined to very specific decks, to very specific interactions. It's not how the general player base approaches the format.
    Posted in: Commander Rules Discussion Forum
  • posted a message on Why is it so hard to get feedback on decklists?
    Well the nectdeck comment is just asinine. You don't have to netdeck to know good cards in the format, or look at EDHREC. It's always funny to me when people bring up the word "netdeck" because it's usually used in such a poor argument or way of thinking. Netdecking ultimately means finding optimal or good cards and that you're using them, because that's what "netdecks" are: Optimized decks that were came to as a consensus of common knowledge of what a good assembly of cards are for a deck. Every time someone "netdecks" it's a list of cards that were tested and proven. You don't even need the internet to do that if you have a decent amount of exposure or experience in a format to know what you're doing. So really people? Just drop the "netdeck" thing. It's ignorant. Especially in Commander.

    Quote from Ninja Bob »
    Quote from JqlGirl »
    When I was invited back to these forums, I looked forward to sharing my decklists with others here. However, after posting a couple and getting minimal responses, I'm wondering what the point is. I'm proud of my decklists and have spent a fair amount of time tuning these decks, so to take the effort to post it up in the multiplayer decklist forum and receive little to no feedback is disheartening. Are people here just not interested in other folks' decklists or what?

    I agree. I think half of my deck threads received zero responses and get buried tot he 2nd page in under 48 hours. I haven't posted that many. Maybe 10 deck lists over the past 6 years.

    If people are so much more interested in other deck lists that yours is getting buried to Page 2 within 48 hours, that would suggest there's a large difference in interest between your decks and the others that put you on Page 2. So there's either something lacking in the post content or people aren't interested for some reason or another. That's no fault of anyone else's. I'm also not saying it's your fault either, but for what you're claiming to happen there's a reason somewhere because all those other threads bumping you down are getting the feedback y'all are claiming is hard to get.
    Posted in: Commander (EDH)
  • posted a message on [POLL] Planeswalkers as playable generals
    Planeswalkers grind the game to a halt because of their abilities? Well I should advise the concern also be directed to decks that have lots of nonland permanents, that act during their opponents turn, tutor frequently, that create sticky boards that are harder to break. That a variety of creature commanders can also make games go slow because of how they interact with the game as whole.

    Planeswalkers are defensive and provide a health buffer? Creatures literally already act as buffers for your health. That like creatures, planeswalkers can also be offensive cards. Ever hear of ground-stalling?

    Planeswalkers require resources to take care of? Good thing creaures, lands, enchantments, and artifacts aren't like that and don't require the deck to actually pack a healthy amount of means to remove those permanents. /s

    Oh and I voted yes because I just want Tibalt, the Fiend-Blooded and Tibalt, Rakish Instigator as my commanders because he is my favorite of the planeswalkers, not because he is the strictly the best from a mechanical standpoint. That if the concern is power, ban the worst ones, allow the rest, and call it a day.

    So, your argument for Planeswalkers is a sarcastic post that didn't even correctly address half of the issues you're attempting to poke holes in with faulty logic while simultaneously not actually doing anything to make a case for them?

    Yep, there sure are archetypes and Commanders that see play that slow down the game. They're pretty niche and not often played, either, while the issue of slowing down games is inherent with any Planeswalker as a Commander for the reasons I listed that you couldn't cherry pick.

    Yep. Creatures can block. Yet they don't divide your attacks between themselves and the player since it's not Hearthstone and you don't directly attack Creatures. The largest way of removing Planeswalkers is through combat damage where there's far less removal spells to be directed at Planeswalkers than any other type of removal out there. Your example falls flat.

    Imagine a format that rarely sees Planeswalkers suddenly inundated with them coming out of the command zone on demand and having to further divide all those resources. Golly gee it's like on top of all of those things you mentioned that adding a bunch of something else to deal with that isn't often around might be stretching decks even thinner! You even made my case for me here. /s

    In all seriousness, though, if all you have to offer the discussion here is to be sardonic then take that to social media or Twitter. We're actually having a discussion here.
    Posted in: Commander Rules Discussion Forum
  • posted a message on [POLL] Planeswalkers as playable generals
    Quote from Taleran »
    I feel like that is a thing more based on the individual building the deck rather than more cards available.

    If someone wants to make a controlling, taxing, life gaining deck or any combination of those things those tools already exist.

    I am unsure if any p/w do this better than Commanders already legal.

    You really don't want Dovin Baan, Jace, Unraveler of Secrets, Venser, the Sojourner, Ral, Izzet Viceroy or a number of other Planeswalkers to get their emblem off or it's going to be a nearly impossible uphill battle. When you're having to keep them under control while also dealing with one or two other players who are also playing Planeswalkers, you're so busy splitting your resources that the game is never going to move whether they taxes or control or not. The fact is that being forced to devote most of your combat or removal to Planeswalkers - not even including the other stuff in their deck - the game is grinding to a halt. You have no time to progress how your deck wants to play, because you have to worry about their Planeswalkers. In the current Commander environment you can make smart choices and trades and let some Commanders sit on the battlefield without worry about them. There is more nuance than "Keep everyone's Planeswalkers off of the board". That nuance is extremely lessened and gameplay becomes much less interesting.
    Posted in: Commander Rules Discussion Forum
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