Wednesday, July 29, 2009

Card of the Every Other Day or Some Such Tomfoolery - Chitinize

Some of you might have noticed that I have been, shall we say, less than punctual with the cards of the day of late. This is because I am a bum. Actually, no. It's because I'm lazy. No excuses (even though I just gave two). My assumption is that once I start up school again full time, I'll keep more regular schedules. Look for that. Late this August. Until then, expect choppy updates and missed days. If I find myself unable to readily update during the school year, I'll probably shift to a M-W-F or Tu-Th-Sa pattern of updates. But don't get your hopes down just yet.

A NOTE TO THE OTHER ENGINEERS: If you feel like submitting any cards, just drop my a line. I'm sure I can fit you into my nonexistent schedule.

Original Art

Sunday, July 12, 2009

Card of the Day - Unnerving Might and Valiant Stand

Flourish has been done before. There's not a whole lot of difference between cards with flourish and cards like Kindle except flourish actually makes new copies whereas Kindle and its kin just grow greater in effect.

Benny freaks out about this one. I don't think it's that scary, especially not with Savanah Lions bustling around in standard again.

Original Art - Unnerving Might
Original Art - Valiant Stand

Saturday, July 11, 2009

Card of the Day - Utopia Tree

It's a photo of a tree from Utopia, Texas. What more do you want from me?

Original Art? No. There's no reason any sane person would ever want to use a photograph as the illustration for a card.

Have a fantastic prerelease and don't play Runeclaw Bear.

Original Art

Land Friday

Day late and a dollar short, as usual.

Original Art

Friday, July 10, 2009

It's All Aesthetics, Really

Just finished looking through M10 on gatherer. Some thoughts on cards:

Centaur Courser - The art is pretty cool, but it should still be a Nessian.
Deathmark - Like the art, especially the black mana symbol where the pupil should be. Is this the first time a mana symbol has shown up in card artwork?
Doom Blade - Like the art, still don't like the name.
Excommunicate - The old flavor text was better and would still fit in M10. They should have kept it.
Fabricate & Rod of Ruin - Saldrath is really good at magic.
Flashfreeze - Love the flavor text
Illusionary Servent - Really like the art
Lifelink - What is going on here?
Manabarbs - Kamahl knows what's up. No legendaries in M10, it seems.
Mind Control - This art is terrible.
Naturalize - They should have used the Shards of Alara art. It was better.
Ornithopter - Like the art. The flavor text isn't new, but it seems oddly appropriate.
Ponder - Like the new art except for the face.
Prodigial Pyromancer - Uncommon now. Is it just me, or does the text seem a little bolder on M10 cards than on their Tenth Edition versions?
Serpent of the Endless Sea - Really like the art. The name seems like something Shore Snapper would come up with.
Sign in Blood - Love the art, love the card. I want to see someone lose to this thing.
Time Warp - LET'S DO THE TIME WARP AGAIN! In the water? I don't understand.
Unsummon - Why does this Esperite only have four fingers? That bugs me so much. It's like how Suntail Hawk has four legs for some reason.
Veteran Armorsmith & Veteran Weaponsmith - I like cards that share art, especially when that art is good.
Weakness - Rude
Whispersilk Cloak - Like the art
Wind Drake - Hate the art

That is all.

Thursday, July 9, 2009

[Wizard Week] Card of the Day- Deepwilde Sorcerer

Hello and welcome to the last day of Wizard Week. Today, we'll be discussing what Wizards don't usually do, using this card as an example: Let's start with color. You get Blue wizards, obviously, and black wizards. You get some red wizards, most notably Prodigal Pyromancer. You get some white wizards and few green wizards. You've got 16 green wizards (not counting multicolor), 41 white wizards, 31 red wizards, 53 black wizards and 216 blue wizards. Yep. Green doesn't get wizards. In terms of magic, they get shamans and druids.
Here's another thing wizards don't generally do: Aggro. At least, wizards don't generally do aggro on their own. And if they do, they're not generally getting blocked, so they don't have trample. You've got flying wizards and unblockable wizards, but you don't get big tramply wizards. The biggest wizard there is is...well, the biggest size is 5/5. And no trample. So this girl is 1/1 below the largest wizards and she has trample.
So, to sum up, her type line, picture and name all say wizard, but everything else on her says Warrior.
And now, Empathy. It's a psudeo ability, like threshold. It doesn't have a standardized text, only a standardized form. They're fun. It's sort of like Kinship, only more permanent. Vampire Nocturnus could've had Empathy. But then he probably would've been less useful.

So, this is the last day of Wizard Week. Gotta say, it was a real gas. I look forward to seeing you guys again. Unfortunately, I'm going on hiatus until August 8, due to the fact that I have to go into hiding. So, see you all then!

Original Art

Wednesday, July 8, 2009

[Wizard Week] Card of the Day- Blast of Thought, Cyborg Necromancer

Hello again and welcome to day three of Wizard Week. Today, we will again be discussing what wizards do. Surprisingly, they deal damage. Prodigal Sorcerer for example. Like this card:
Yes, it does count everyone's cards. So if Maralynn of the Mornsong is in play, this card is totally worthless. So what do they do if you give them a card they can't use in time? They discard it. And guess who's happy when they do that? This guy:
This creature is my zombie wizard tribal leader. I use him with Lich Lord of Unx to make hoards of zombies and wizards. And they're all bigger. And then, Blast of thought will also give you a zombie. Genius!

Tomorrow, a new keyword (psudeo) and the color Wizards usually don't appear in!

Tuesday, July 7, 2009

[Wizard Week] Card of the Day- Thaumic-Control Adept, Thaumic Academy

Hey, folks, it's Nameless One again! Today, we're going to be going into greater depth as to what Wizards like to do. Through my research, I've found that Wizards like to do tapping/untapping (Aphetto Grifter, Fatesticher, Aphetto Alchemist), countering spells (Patron Wizard, Disruptive Pitmage/Student), Drawing cards and other blue things. They're, in essential, the blue class. Here's my personal wizard counterspell:
Yeah, he does cost the same as Patron Wizard, but with one less blue and Champion. I've discovered from Lorwyn/Morningtide that champion allows you to make ridiculous cards, like...oh, I dunno....Lightning Crafter? Yeah. Pretty much. The thing I love most about this card is that it actually gives you a use for the Scornful Egotist, a 1/1 for 8 with morph for one blue. A counterspell that says pay 8? Now there's something I can sink my teeth into. Now for the other thing that wizards have a tendency to do:

Yes, Wizards become unblockable. And with the Thaumic-Control Adept, this land is also a Nix, which could be useful in the current environment, what with cascade and such. There's three wizards with unconditional unblockable and three more that make things unblockable. The Cephalid Pathmage in fact has unconditional unblockable and can make things unblockable. Pretty awesome. Anyway, it's also a pump for your Nameless One or Nameless One X and a count for your Ixidor's Will. The unblockable may be costed a little too high, but meh. It breaks the rules of Magic.

Anyway, that's it for day two of Wizards Week! Stay tuned tomorrow for more things Wizards do!

Original Art:
Thaumic-Control Adept
Thaumic Academy

Monday, July 6, 2009

[Wizard Week] Card of the Day- Nameless One X

Hey, loyal readers! Welcome to the first day of Wizard week, where I'll be posting wizard themed cards and discussing wizardly stuff. Here's the card for today:Yes, it is yours truly in an epic evolved form. The evolution keyword is to allow you to upgrade your creatures when they've been on the field for a while. I'm thinking about doing a Krosan Beast style thing with one of them...anyway. Wizards are spellcasters and they're in blue. Naturally, this means they fiddle about with unblockablity, either by flying, fear or just straight unblockable, as well as counterspells. We'll be getting to the cards that epitomize those tomorrow.

Now, back to this card. Nameless One was one of a cycle of Avatars from Onslaught block, which also included Heedless One, Doubtless One, Reckless One and Soulless One. They each had their own mechanics as well as the tribal counting and you know what the Nameless One got? Well, let's go through the others first. Heedless got trample, Reckless got haste, Doubtless got lifelink, and Soulless got the ability to count zombies in the graveyard as well. And Nameless got morph. Boring. Personally, I think it should've had flying. But, since I can't rewrite history, I simply created the evolved form of Nameless One. Yes, adding X onto the end of something's name means it has evolved. Instead of morph, it has evolution. It also costs slightly more, but it's worth it for what you get. If you've got an Evolved Nameless One X and two wizards, say two Cathartic Adepts, you've got two 1/1s and a 5/5 flying first striker. Now that obviously raises the question of how you got the Nameless One to evolve in the first place, but never mind that. I plan to play around more with evolution, since it can be an enjoyable mechanic.

Anyway, enough about me. See you guys tomorrow for day 2 of Wizard Week!

Original Art

Sunday, July 5, 2009

Card(s) of the Day: Death to all Defilers, Forked Lightning

Al Capone here, with my first crack at Card of the Day. For your viewing pleasure.

I except this card to be treated with all seriousness.


This one is clearly a bit more serious. Yes, it's very, very similar to Pulse of the Forge (Mirrodin) in terms of cost, effect and mechanic. However, it speeds up the process, going straight to evening the life totals instead of recurring the 4 damage until you're higher. The result is a more elegant equalizing of life totals.

Original Art: Death to all Defilers

Original Art: Forked Lightning

Friday, July 3, 2009


(Started writing this May 3rd, 2009)

Yeah, I don't actually have any arted Seek cards to show you. Sorry. I can tell you what it does, though:

Seek CARDTYPE (While choosing targets as part of casting this, you must chose at least one CARDTYPE if able)

And here are a few sample cards. They all seem to do stuff with creatures.

Hot Hands [1][R]
Seek creature (While choosing targets as part of casting this, you must choose at least one creature if able)
CARDNAME deals 4 damage to target creature or player.

It LIVES [2][B]
Seek land (While choosing targets as part of casting this, you must choose at least one land if able)
Return target creature or land from your graveyard to the battlefield.

I Hate Enchantments So Much [1][W]
Seek enchantment (While choosing targets as part of casting this, you must choose at least one enchantment if able)
Exile target attacking or blocking creature or target enchantment.

Metamorphosis Release Card(s)

(Saved Post #1 - Started writing this July 3rd, 2009)

Guess you found this. Good job!

Original Art:
Desolate Temple 1
Desolate Temple 2
Hillside Falls 1
Hillside Falls 2
Marsh Grotto 1
Marsh Grotto 2
Arid Canyon 1
Arid Canyon 2
Jungle River 1
Jungle River 2

Land Friday

And now it's working again. You'd think somebody going into computer science would understand this sort of thing better. Really, though, it's not lack of skill that's holding me back, just lack of effort.

Besides, it's working. Isn't that proof?

Original Art

Land Friday Postponed

Oh bugger. MSE ain't workin' properly. See, all those cards I just put up were saved on this site already and now I can't get Magic Set Editor to open. I'll get today's land up as soon as I can to placate the desperate Land Friday fanatics (of which there are no doubt many). In the meantime, I'll introduce Al Capone, the newest Ancient Byzantine Engineer. You may already know him as Frank Sinatra. He's gonna be raving about his so-called amazing 3-0 draft deck and posting a card tomorrow while I'm in Utopia (again).

I went 3-0 in drafts before it was cool.

EDIT: Al has fallen victim to one of the many traps blogger likes to set up. See, posts show up on the time and date that you start writing them, not when you actually post them. To illustrate this, I'm going to start three now and post them whenever the whim strikes me (i.e. whenever I remember). All three will show up as if they've been posted today, be we know better, don't we?

Jund is so broken...

If you get passed the kind of nonsense I got passed during my last foray into Shards/Conflux/Reborn drafting. Howdy folks, new contributor Al Capone (formerly mentioned in posts as "Frank," which should have properly been "Frank Sinatra") here with a draft report for a very solid 3-0 Jund deck. Here's the list:

1 Rip-Clan Crasher
1 Elvish Visionary
1 Jund Hackblade
3 Terminate (!)
1 Macta Rioters
1 Jund Sojourners
1 Sprouting Thrinax
2 Branching Bolt (!)
1 Drag Down
1 Dark Temper
1 Wild Leoatu
1 Sewn-Eye Drake
1 Rhox Charger
1 Beacon Behemoth
1 Gorger Wurm
1 Bituminous Blast
1 Sylvan Bounty
1 Igneous Pouncer
1 Cavern Thoctar
1 Absorb Vis

17 basic land

Sideboard: 1 Magma Spray (I just didn't need more removal)

The deck has a couple shortcomings, namely its lack of borderposts for fixing and activating the hackblade and hushblade that I decided against maindecking (in favor of the easier-to-cast and quasi-fixing Elvish Visionary), its lack of tri or fetch lands (which is why I maindecked Absorb Vis, Sylvan Bounty and Igneous Pouncer) and its lack of a true late game "bomb" (it is worth noting that my 4 and 5 drops are all capable of finishing the game and that the jerk next to me who was in Naya/Jund-splash took a Predator Dragon, a Channelhord Wurm and a Lavalanche; I paid him back by wupping his ass in the finals). Other than those few issues, this is the best deck I've drafted in some time. The triple-terminates just make life easy. An example: the afore-mentioned jerk and I are stalemated in game 1 of the finals, with the exception of my Sewn-Eye Drake swinging overhead as a 5 turn clock. He drops Channelhord Wurm to try and break the stalemate, very evidently pleased with himself. I nod, ask if he's done and Terminate it at eot. No big deal. I'm holding another Terminate and a Drag Down. You see how this deck might be kinda good?

Round 1: Was never close. My opponent is a newb of some variety, good-natured but very much out of his league. He plays a janky Esper deck. I play early creatures and kill literally everything he plays for the first 6 turns of games 1 and 2 as his life total goes from 20 to 0 very, very quickly.

Round 2: The only other player (besides Jerk) whose deck scared me. This was, after all, an insane pool of cards we opened at this table. His Bant deck packing lots of Crystalizations, Celestial Purges and 2 Oblivion Rings seems a force to be reckoned with. I am wrong. My removal is slightly better and my creatures are better and more numerous. He does not have enough creatures for my removal and I take games 1 and 2 quickly. He asks for a 3rd game, which I win handily. He asks for a 4th, to see if his deck can possibly beat mine (it can't). It doesn't. Please note, though, that he had a deck fully capable of going 3-0 and he was capable of playing it a different pod.

Round 3: Jerk to my right. Game 1 stalemates until my Sewn-Eye Drake starts beating overhead. I build a defensive, he hunts for answers until, as he sits at 2 life and I sit at 13 with a tapped 3 power flyer, he topdecks Predator Dragon, sacrifices all 6 of his creatures and swings at me for 16 in the air. I look at my tapped flyer, my Drag Down (-3/-3), his 16 power and my 13 life. Well, I had to lose a game some time...

Game 2: Turn 1 Mtn, Turn 2 Forest, Rip-Clan Crasher swing 2 (18), Turn 3 Jund Hackblade, swing 4 (14) Turn 4 Wild Leoatu swing 4 (10) Turn 5 Bituminous Blast his only blocker, cascade into Sewn-Eye Drake, swing 11, game 3?

Game 3: Basically the same start. T2 Crasher, T3 Hackblade, T4 Sewn-Eye, T5 Beacon Behemoth, then Terminate, Terminate, Terminate to win the draft. His deck was good. Mine was better. And he was to my right. Those Terminates (except the 1st, which I opened) and that Bit Blast came past him (he was busy taking Lavalanches and other bullshit). Such is life.

Anyways, that's the draft and the deck, hope it was educational. Moral of the story: Draft triple Terminate. Real moral: Jund is probably the strongest deck to draft in Shards block. Take removal, back it with big bodies, and (the deck's other shortcoming) take Putrid Leech. That guy is the best 2 drop in the set, draft or constructed.

I plan to be back in the future, with cards to show you. Until then,

--Al Capone

Card of the Day(s) - Guide of the Wasted Realms, Curse of Camon, Heiml's Hand, Mountain Lion

I am returned, albeit briefly. I've spent pretty much the whole week at UT orientation and when I got back my computer decided to die on me, so updates have been even less usual than usual. I tried putting the cards up in the edit posts section of this site and having Draco post them but for some reason it didn't work. Whatever that reason may be, here's what you missed from Tuesday:

Not a whole lot here. Black/Red does colorless. Not a whole lot of innovation, and not a great name.

Well, that's something. A couple of other lace concepts I thought about:

-Lace with indestructible (too powerful, and the easiest check on power level -high mana cost- doesn't matter on lace cards)
-Lace with unblockable (same deal as indestructible, and having unblockable enchantments doesn't make much sense)
-Lace with basic (no practical application as lace doesn't work on lands)
-Lace with snow (kinda nifty, and I probably should have done it instead of legendary)
-Lace with delicious (too powerful)

The Guide and the Curse share the same original artwork.

Now here's Wednesday's card:

Heiml's a forest spirit.

And now the card for today:

I don't think spirits talk like that. This was from back when Barlem was human.

Original Art - Guide of the Wasted Realms & Curse of Camon
Original Art - Heiml's Hand
Original Art - Mountain Lion

Thursday, July 2, 2009

Card of the Day- Edicts

Hey, Sports fans...Wait, wait, wrong blog. Hey, loyal readers, it's Nameless One back once again, filling in for Grell. I heard that he was having computer problems, so here I am, desperately attempting to fill his space once again.

Today I bring you my cycle of mythic rare sorceries, based on the Ultimatums from Shards. I call them...Edicts. Sound cool huh? Well, let's start with the white edict.
The white edict is like Akroma's Vengence on awesome. All the edicts cost 5 and 3 (their color). I'm not sure if they're costed high enough for their effects, but I did my best.

The blue edict is a combination of Bribery and Blatant Thievery with some awesome thrown into the mix. It's probably broken, but meh. Costs eight.

The black edict. It's like Diabolic Edict, with a strong dose of steroids. It's what black's all about, rolled up into one card. It's the least synergetic edict, in my opinion, but the edicts are all about clearing the field. It's a theme.
The red edict. Of course, it blows things up and then deals damage to people. It's also the edict I'm somewhat uncomfortable with, since it's questionable whether its effect is in the correct color, since red is usually damage based board sweeping.

This is the odd ball edict. It's the only edict that doesn't benefit significantly from multiplayer and also the only edict that doesn't destroy large quantities of stuff. Or clear the board in some way, anyway. It's also another one that I'm questionable with the power to cost ratio.

So yeah. Buncha powerful sorceries that benefit from multiplayer and will (hopefully) win you the game. Let's hear those comments!

Original Art: