Commentary, Return to Ravnica - Guild Rankings
In preparation for my prerelease this Sunday, here are my thoughts on the guilds ranked in power (in a sealed pool). I’ve seen some professional analyses but this is just how I see it.
- Azorius- I think that there is a solid limited pool for UB control/midrange. White is a very powerful color and blue has some extremely useful spells. Without the use of a wide range of rares and mythics, I really believe Azorius has the best ability to deal with threats from all guilds and enough power to win games.
- Rakdos- Now I know this is strange since I just listed White and Blue as the best colors to use, but in a set filled with multicolored cards, give me a break. Rakdos is straight up raw. There’s no fucking around here. A huge amount of little guys swinging for lots of damage and some really nice burn/removal. If Rakdos gets a good start I don’t know if any guilds will have a good chance of stopping it.
- Selesnya- Selesnya’s promo card is pretty solid and it has some great spells in the set. Populate is a fun ability and, although it’s weak to bounce spells, there are only two real threats in that regard and one is Azorius colors and one is a rare. Having a bunch of threatening creatures is always a good thing in limited.
- Golgari- Golgari can be a really amazing guild, but it’s so slow, and with very little utility coming out of the commons, I don’t see it being able to make the threshold of power it’s capable of very often. In standard it’s possibly the best guild, but in limited I’m thinking it’ll be a little weak.
- Izzet- Sorry on this one Lucas, Izzet has some bad ass combos at its disposal and some absolutely deadly cards. The problem is that those deadly cards are rare and those combos are going to be hard to pull off in a sealed pool. There’s a possibility of some Izzet players pulling off incredible decks, but as a whole I think it’s too risky of a bet in the prerelease
Oh wow!! The art for Return to Ravnica looks like it’s gonna be awe-
Thank you. Everyone’s praising it, but of course they would, cleavage and all.
That art just looks completely out of place. I really don’t understand why it was used at all.
During the World Creating panel at PAX, the artists wanted to have cards that aren’t associated with a guild to feel out of place (in terms of clothing, etc). Also, places =/= people.
The artistic focus here is that the woman in this picture is protecting herself from an attack and is being snarky wag-your-finger-you-did-something-naughty kind of way. The background architecture isn’t the focus, and therefore isn’t as fleshed out as much. This leads to a better composition and greater focus on what’s really going on: A spell being countered.
Illustration: Lukas Ketner
Magic Kingdom: Does being cool matter at a competitive Magic tournament with $3,000 on the line?
Commentary - Top Ten Best Cards in Standard
As the Standard season comes to a close, I think now would be the best time to, as a community, have a healthy discussion about the top 10 best cards in Standard. I want as many people as possible to repost this and share their thoughts.
10. Geralf’s Messenger
Number 10 on this list is this guy. He’s become one of the most efficient and hard-to-answer threats in the format and is probably the greatest contributor to the success of Zombies in the metagame.
9. Gut Shot
In a format defined by one-toughness creatures, this card stands out as the best answer to them. Most Snapcaster decks are packing 3-4 in the main and a multitude of other decks are siding them in off color. Being the most efficient answer to turn one plays earns this card a spot on the top.
8. Birthing Pod
This card is the titular engine behind one of the best archetypes in the format. Naya Pod, Bant Pod, 4-color Pod, BUG Zombie Pod, and Angel Zombie Pod are some of the most successful decks that this card had pushed. A natural companion to the Morbid and Undying mechanics of Innistrad Block, the card has been winning tournaments abusing those synergies.
7. Phantasmal Image
“Anything you can do, I can do [cheaper].” I would argue that the popularity of this card has pushed Frites and Solar Flare mostly out of the format, and it’s made the environment very hostile to the Titans. It takes something very powerful to do all of that.
6. Cavern of Souls
One part mana-fixer, one part Mana Leak-hate, Cavern of Souls does everything a creature deck wants. It makes your threats easier to cast and makes sure that they stick, and the best part is that it can go into almost any flavor of creature deck.
This is a card that came out of the M13 gates running. It is good at any point in the game: if you’re behind, it can help you get back on parity; and if you’re ahead, it helps make sure you stay in that position.
4. Birds of Paradise
In this spot, I would also like to include Avacyn’s Pilgrim, Arbor Elf, and Llanowar Elves. The mana dorks have quietly become one of the most defining pillars of the format, letting you push your mana curve beyond the turn limit. If they aren’t dealt with, they can very quickly run away with the game.
3. Snapcaster Mage
What’s better than casting a removal spell? Casting it again, of course! Snapcaster Mage has been a staple in every format it is legal in since its printing, and Standard is no exception. Arguably the best card in the Delver deck, Snapcaster has catapulted that deck into the stratosphere.
2. Restoration Angel
Just when you think you’ll be able to deal with a creature, Restoration Angel comes in and saves it. Just when you think you’re ahead, Restoration Angel comes in and flickers a value creature. It’s the reason you’re afraid to do anything when a white deck leaves 4-mana up.
1. Bonfire of the Damned
In a format defined by creature mirrors, it should be no surprise that the best card in the format is the card that singlehandedly breaks those mirrors. No card has more blowout stories and no card creates stronger feelings than the best card in the format.
Reblog/repost with your thoughts! Let’s generate some discussion!
Magic Player Snapshot - MtGFan/Kris
1. Favorite Color: Blue!
2. Least Favorite Color: I don’t really have one.
3. Favorite Card: Jace, the Mind Sculptor (mostly because how I won him)
4. Least Favorite Card: Kaalia of the Vast
5. Favorite Deck you own: My soon to rotate U/B control deck.
6. Favorite Deck you don’t own: Gonna go with Thropter/Time Sieve or Pyromancer’s Ascension/Infinite Turns.
7. Least Favorite Deck to play against: Usually White Weenie. But I don’t have a a least favorite.
8. Favorite Ravnica Guild: House Dimir (blue/black)
9. Your EDH General: Riku of the Two Reflections; Teferi, Mage of Zhalfir (combo with Knowledge Pool); and Arcanis the Omnipotent.
10. Favorite Format: Commander/EDH and Limited.
11. When you started playing: Shards of Alara.
12. Favorite Set or Block: Set: Rise of the Eldrazi, Block: Shards of Alara
13. Favorite Mechanic: Millllllll.
14. Favorite Creature Type: Sphinx!
15. What kinds of effects/game states do you love most?: I like milling, controlled boards, and mirror control matches. Makes me feel smart if I can outplay the mirror control.