Wednesday, November 9, 2022

Brothers' War Considerations for Possibility Cube

Brothers' War full spoilers are out and that means it's time to go over all the cards I'm considering for my Possibility Cube! 

In this post I'll be writing about all the cards from Brothers' War that people are talking about or should be talking about for an unpowered unrestricted cube environment in the context of my personal cube, the Possibility Cube. I know I missed my pauper cube post for Dominaria United, but I've just been a little busy due to landing a new game design job! For now the plan is to do a double pauper post for DMU and BRO. Let's get started.

Lay Down Arms

The Good: Oust has proven to be a great removal spell in my environment and Lay Down Arms has the potential to be that but better in some situations, that's certainly enough to get me intrigued. The prevalence of tokens nowadays also factors into this card's power, just as we see it do so with cards like Oust and Prismatic Ending.

The Bad: Unless your cube has great dual fixing, I don't see this card being very good in a non-monowhite deck. While Fatal Push has a good number of targets, it turns up a dead draw more than I'd like and I think turning it into a sorcery knocks it out of contention.

The Verdict: I think I'm good on 1-mana white removal spells and this is less appealing than the others I run. A pass for me but I can see this card being very good in some environments and I may just come back to it if I see it perform in other cubes.

Loran of the Third Path

The Good: White finally has Reclamation Sage and it comes with upside! The vigilance is actually quite the nice bonus as your opponent really doesn't want to trade with this in combat. The activated ability is also very intriguing. You get first crack at having the card on a fresh turn, but I'm honestly unsure when exactly it will be correct to activate. There are also some sweet synergies if you have the chance to draft Karakas or a Leovold variant. In any case, Reclamation Sage is an all-timer in cube, this rate for a 2/1 that kills a mana rock or something better on ETB is just rock solid.

The Bad: It is true that white has other good options that green doesn't necessarily have, cards like Skyclave Apparition for example. White 3s are also getting very crowded and a lot of people want the most aggressive/disruptive 3-drops for the white aggro deck.

The Verdict: I will be running this, I've been looking to cut 3-mana Thalia for awhile and I think this is a great addition. Overall I'm very glad we have this option for cubes.

Recruitment Officer

The Good: Savannah Lions with card advantage upside, this will surely see play somewhere in cube. It has good typing too which can be important in the right environment.

The Bad: So there's actually quite a bit I don't like about this card. Ideally, you want this to just be a Savannah Lions because the game you're activating it isn't going to be a game going well for you. That isn't necessarily a bad thing but the ability also just isn't very good at catching you up and at that mana cost it's highly likely to be your whole turn. Looking at only 4 cards means you will definitely sometimes whiff and even when you hit, a random cmc 3 or less creature isn't generally what you need to catch up.

The Verdict: I know some people are very high on this card, but I'm a little more lukewarm on it. I will be replacing Skymarcher Aspirant for it, but to me that's simply taking the place of the worst Savannah Lions I'm running and I'll actively be looking to replace it in the future.

Siege Veteran

The Good: Luminarch Aspirant has proven to be one of the best white 2-drops in my cube, often compared to a 2-mana planeswalker. The same ability on a 3-drop with an additional p/t may just be good enough. Nearly 40% of my cmc 3 or less creatures are soldiers as well, so the other ability can certainly be relevant.

The Bad: I'm unsure if this effect is worth a 50% increase in mana. While the baseline is a 3-mana 4-power threat, aggro decks value those a lot less than a 1-mana 2-power or 2-mana 3-power threat. Mirran Crusader is by no means unplayable, but it has definitely been well pushed out of my cube. Even Gideon Blackblade has become a lower pick than it use to be.

The Verdict: I would not scoff at seeing this in a cube and would certainly draft it in my white aggro deck, but it doesn't quite make it for my cube. This is a nice option to have and may even be good enough for my cube, but I think with this set we've finally gotten to the point where you can't possibly run every good enough 3-mana white card without the slot being too glutted. Honestly, I think it's glutted in my cube already.

Soul Partition

The Good: I know a lot of people happily run Fateful Absence and this is arguably on the same level. A 2-mana instant speed answer for any permanent is awfully efficient, even if it's only a tempo advantage rather than hard removal. I honestly think it will be a toss up how often it will be better to give your opponent a clue or their card back with a 2-mana tax, this is certainly better at hitting a token. Interestingly this also serves as a "bounce" for your own creatures as the tax won't apply to you.

The Bad: I personally don't quite run Fateful Absence as happily as others. With the amount of planeswalkers in my environment I really need cheap ways to answer them and that's where I run Fateful Absence, I don't really value it as non-planeswalker removal very highly. I only run a handful of doomblades nowadays, with all the efficient options I'm really only interested in the absolute best 2-mana 1-for-1s. Unexpectedly Absent does what this does way better in my opinion and this is unfortunately much more akin to Fateful Absence.

The Verdict: Pass for me. If I did run it, it'd be in lieu of Fateful Absence, but for the role of planeswalker removal I'd rather them get a clue. I expect this to see play in some cubes so I may reevaluate if I see it play well elsewhere.

Combat Thresher

The Good: And yet another white Phyrexian Rager with upside. While double strike synergies aren't nearly as good as the advantage flying gets you with Inspiring Overseer, this card absolutely slaps if you blink it. A 3/3 with double strike is no joke and blinking is something you'd actively be trying to do to your Phyrexian Rager anyway.

The Bad: It's quite underwhelming if you're not blinking it and without evasion you'd most certainly want to be doing something else in the white aggro deck. 

The Verdict: Phyrexian Ragers are rarely straight up bad in any environment and there are some fun and powerful things to do with this one. Unfortunately I doubt I can find room to test this, my white 3s are too many already and I really want to run this next one.

Steel Seraph

The Good: A 3-mana 3/3 that pushes its and another creature's damage through is absolute gas. The fact that it can give itself vigilance or lifelink when it's alone on the battlefield or if the extra evasion isn't needed is also great. With the non-prototype cost being as low as 6-mana, Baneslayer mode will definitely come up here and there.

The Bad: Just about all my current white 3s pass the Vindicate Test and this does not, but honestly being a bit of a Baneslayer matters a lot less at low cmcs, this thing will start taking over the game fast enough that I really don't mind this downside. You can't blink this with Restoration Angel which is probably the saddest thing about the card.

The Verdict: I think this is a slam dunk for me, I'll definitely be playing this. Even with no other creatures this is a 3-mana creature attacking with evasion for a 6 point life swing, I'm down for that floor. The 6-mana mode, the artifact synergies, and the blink synergies are all relevant gravy on top as well.

Skystrike Officer

The Good: So blue gets its own Rabblemaster, a bit slower, more evasive, and the option to draw cards at some point. If you're supporting the blue tempo deck, this is the kind of 3-drop you want to see.

The Bad: While I love blue creature-based tempo decks, they're a little too fair and slow to get going in my cube and that sums this card up as well.

The Verdict: A pass for me but I'd love to see this in a lower powered environment where the cube is specifically supporting a deck for it.

Teferi, Temporal Pilgrim

The Good: This card is sweet. While the token the -2 makes may not be super impressive if you don't have immediate card draw, it can potentially be a 4/4 with vigilance the next turn and it threatens to only get bigger. A pair of these tokens for 5-mana is some nasty pressure, anything more out of this and you're looking to snowball fast towards a victory. Curving into this after a Jace, the Mind Sculptor is the absolute dream but there are plenty of ways to quickly get Teferi out of combat range and buff the token into a big threat.

The Bad: It's hard to be upset with this card but it is a bit expensive I suppose. It's not the most powerful planeswalker, but I have trouble thinking of any buff that wouldn't immediately push it to broken. I will say I've not been impressed with 5-mana walkers who have a simple "Draw a card." as a loyalty ability, but I feel like you're here for the -2 and static ability in this case.

The Verdict: I see this getting pushed out at some point, but Mu Yanling, Sky Dancer has not been performing well in my cube so I think I'll make the swap. I imagine this being very good in a lot of environments.

Arcane Proxy

The Good: A lot of people like Sea Gate Stormcaller in their vintage cube but I've always hated that you had to cast both Stormcaller and your spell in the same turn. Arcane Proxy lets you split up its mana cost and that of the spell you're copying and that's well worth the extra mana. Cast your spell on curve or whenever you need it and forever have the option to cast it again with Arcane Proxy later. It should also be noted that it works well with any suspend cards with a mana value of 0.

The Bad: Like Stormcaller, this is a proactive card that relies a lot on the cards you draw around it. While your options will increase as the game goes on, I wonder how often you'd rather just have an Aether Channeler instead.

The Verdict: I wouldn't think twice about including it in a powered cube, but I'm not sure it's good enough if you're not rebuying Time Walk or Ancestral. You really want this to be a 3-mana Ravenous Chupacabra but I think it will most often be a more selective Phyrexian Rager. I have some easy cuts in blue currently so if I pick one of these up I might just test it.

Surge Engine

The Good: A 3-power unblockable for 3 is a rate we don't often get. Your opponent passes the turn and you didn't need to counter anything? Spend your 3 mana and now you've got a 4-turn (very likely 3-turn) unblockable clock. The 6-mana activation can also be very good if the game's gone grindy, although to be fair I wonder how grindy it can be with a 5/4 unblockable on the loose.

The Bad: You don't get much for the upfront cost and investing in it is quite risky for just life total pressure. This card is quite bad in the face of removal.

The Verdict: I'm not really looking for a tempo blue beater like this, but if your cube is, I think this is one of the better ones. 

Gix, Yawgmoth Praetor

The Good: Edric, Spymaster of Trest has shown this effect to potentially be very powerful, however being both blue and green made his deck come together none too often. Gix, however, comes in only black and even has an extra p/t giving him a better chance of connecting with your opponent himself. Black has a lot of low in the curve creatures and really all they do is get in there, now each one that can is a card off the top of your deck. If you can draw 2 cards off of Gix, you've more than gotten your money's worth.

The Bad: The floor of this effect is quite low, there will be times where this simply doesn't do anything. I'm optimistic with the suite of creatures I run in black, but it will need some testing to see how often this is a dud.

The Verdict: Like I said you really need to test this card to see how consistent it is in your environment and I plan on doing just that. Opposition Agent has been quite underwhelming for me so there will be an easy goodbye to that.

Hostile Negotiations

The Good: This may just be a black Fact or Fiction and I'm not saying that because of the little piles game you get to play. Instant speed, splashable, draws you 3 cards, and fuels the graveyard? That's a recipe for success, the only thing it misses from Fact or Fiction is the guaranteed answer when you need something specific.

The Bad: If you do need that one answer off the top of your deck, it is true that you'll never get it with this card unless your opponent screws up. It will basically always be correct for your opponent to give you known information unless that known information is the answer you need. Really there's no selection at all and this will play mostly as "Draw 3 cards. Mill 3 cards."

The Verdict: This is a strong card advantage spell, you don't get the selection I'd want but 3 cards at instant speed for 4-mana is certainly good enough in a lot of cube environments. I think I'll find room to at least test this one.

Misery's Shadow

The Good: I think this is the best Shade ever printed, +1/+1 is a hell of a repeatable buff for a single mana investment and I don't recall it ever being a generic cost. The threat of activation will give this pseudo-unblockable and any mana you know you're not going to use converts to extra damage. If your opponent is forced to block, you can spend some mana for some good ol' 1-for-none removal. A Fireball on a stick will also just sometimes be lethal. Oh yeah, the random graveyard hate will be very annoying on occasion too.

The Bad: Honestly I think this card is great, I can't really think of environments where it would be bad. It can be punished with removal, but that's going to generally be a you mistake.

The Verdict: I think Nantuko Shade's power has been lost to history and people are underestimating this card. Just writing this I'm convinced that this is simply a slam dunk in most any cube and I will be running it.

Phyrexian Fleshgorger

The Good: On rate stats with evasion and lifelink is a nice start to a 3-mana beater. The fact that it's almost always going to get in a "hit" with its ward ability makes this very appealing. I've been fairly okay with Sedgemoor Witch's floor and I think this card's floor is quite a bit higher. While not the first choice, this also serves as an acceptable reanimation/tinker target and it's always nice to fill multiple roles.

The Bad: It feels rather average wherever you play it. I can see this getting cut from many decks for simply not working towards a specific game plan, it's just a generically good beater.

The Verdict: I don't know, I'm feeling a little lukewarm on this but I think it would be good. I think I'll just have to test this one.

Razorlash Transmogrant

The Good: Scrapheap Scrounger has been good for me as a 2-mana 3-power card that can slot into white or red aggro with some splashable upside. This could possibly serve the same role. It's recursion also reminds me of Skyclave Shade, a card I've been quite happy with. If you can be recurring this for BB your opponent is going to be having a rough time too.

The Bad: It hurts that it can't be cheaply recurred with any consistency and the extra toughness on Scrapheap Scrounger actually does a lot to push damage through.

The Verdict: I don't think this quite gets there in the face of the other options we have. If you support black aggro, you might happily run this just for the density.

Transmogrant's Crown

The Good: Bonesplitter is a great aggressive card and, in black, for one more mana Transmogrant's Crown is that but when your equipped threat dies you draw a card. That effect is very much worth the extra initial mana investment.

The Bad: I really don't think this gets there with an equip cost of 2 and I don't think I want an aggressive equipment that requires a color that's not white or red. It's one thing to double the mana cost, the effect should be pretty powerful to warrant that and I do think this does it. But to double the equip cost you'll be paying every single time you want to equip? The equip 1 is exactly what makes cards like Bonesplitter or Heirloom Blade so good.

The Verdict: I really like this card so I may try it out as a black equipment, but a word to the wise, I really wouldn't run this in any deck that wasn't base black.

Feldon, Ronom Excavator

The Good: So I've been rather down on 2/2 hasters, but I think this is my favorite of them. This is going to do its thing chipping in for 2 damage a turn and when your opponent lands their 3/3, it either continues to do its thing or they block and you get a card with selection. It's also not exactly a dead draw later in the game like the other 2-power hasters.

The Bad: I think I'd still rather have 3-power and a way to push that damage through than I would 2-power and haste, but like I said the replacing itself goes a long way.

The Verdict: I'll be testing this card, I think I'll cut Soul-Scar Mage for this as it has not been performing as well as my other red aggro creatures.

Mishra's Research Desk

The Good: I remember when I played Think Twice in modern so I have a soft spot for this effect, this is however Think Twice with bonus selection and the ability to split the first cost between turns. It's always good to be on the lookout for playable 1-mana artifacts nowadays too because they become a lot better with Urza's Saga.

The Bad: The selection probably isn't good enough to make Think Twice get there, you probably will be doing better things than this with your mana.

The Verdict: Doesn't make it for me but this is a nice bit of tech for lower powered environments that I haven't seen many people talking about.

Phyrexian Dragon Engine

The Good: Mirran Crusader is one of my favorite cards and while it was probably in my cube for too long, it was never embarrassing to play. Add on an unearth mode that draws you 3 cards and you've definitely got my attention.

The Bad: Again I don't think this is among the best options for aggressive 3s and you can only play so many. It's not even unique in nabbing value in the graveyard.

The Verdict: I will be passing on this for my cube but I think this would certainly do well in a number of environments.

Bushwhack

The Good: A 1-mana modal cantrip or removal spell is certainly worth considering. Fight effects are generally the worst kind of removal but 1-mana plus upside is generally where you want to be with them.

The Bad: If you regularly read my posts you know I value modality a lot less than raw power and it's no different here. While I think this would be very nice in lower powered midrangey cubes, I think it falls off pretty hard in higher powered environments.

The Verdict: Not for me but a good choice if you value modality.

Titania's Command

The Good: Now this is some modality I can get behind, there are some pretty powerful combinations here. 8 power and toughness split between 2 bodies is a decent floor for a 6-mana spell and tutoring lands can always be powerful depending on what you've drafted. The first option will only be for when you need it but it's nice to have and can potentially be a huge lifepoint swing.

The Bad: 6 mana is quite a lot, Primeval Titan has been pushed out of my cube and this probably isn't as good.

The Verdict: This is a nice option for some environments but doesn't quite make it for mine. I know I'll be picking this fairly highly when it shows up in Arena Cube.

Haywire Mite

The Good: This is just some really nice, cheap artifact/enchantment removal. It's the same total cost as Naturalize but you can split it up over multiple turns, it exiles, and it gains you to life. Of course you also get whatever utility having a creature grants you. 

The Bad: There are a lot of noncreature artifacts I want to blow up with my artifact removal and I imagine that is the case for a lot of cubes.

The Verdict: I fear this will never make the maindeck in my cube and that's something I specifically want to avoid for my includes. However, I expect this to play pretty well if you want a Naturalize effect.

Legions to Ashes

The Good: So in singleton cubes this might as well be a Maelstrom Pulse that exiles, although it's quite sad against clones. Being able to answer any permanent is generally worth 3 mana, I still like O-ring in my cube because people will draft it just so they know they have an answer somewhere in their maindeck or sideboard for anything they might encounter. I'll also say that I like this more than Anguished Unmaking, you generally play that on your turn anyway and the 3 life honestly hurts quite a bit.

The Bad: I recently cut Maelstrom Pulse because it's just so dang boring in a multicolor slot. Also while I explained why I value something like an O-ring, it is true it's less efficient than other removal and I might want something more from a card that commits you to 2 colors.

The Verdict: I'm going to pass on this but it's perfectly fine removal in most environments.

Third Path Iconoclast

The Good: Young Pyromancer finally got the upgrade to a noncreature trigger! Even if it required an extra color to get there it's well worth it. The 1/1s are even artifacts for some great incidental synergies. I think a lot of us have been waiting for this one for some time.

The Bad: It did require another colored pip, but Young Pyro was generally played with blue anyway so it's hard to complain.

The Verdict: Slam dunk of the set, I've been playing with Young Pyromancer since I first started playing magic and I'm excited to play with an upgraded version in my favorite format!

Bladecoil Serpent

The Good: There's a lot of value to be had out of this 6-drop. A 5/4 that draws you 3, or draws you 2 and gets in for 6 trample, or draws you 1 and mind rots your opponents, or just about any combination of effects is going to be really nice. Even in the worst case scenario where your mana isn't cooperating, a 5/4 that draws you 2 is still a 3-for-1.

The Bad: This is a 6-mana creature that really sucks to cheat into play. A 5/4 body for 6 also leaves a lot to be desired. I would almost always want to cast this for 6 blue and I don't know how realistic it is to do that consistently. 

The Verdict: I don't think I'll test it but this card is certainly funky. It's not as good as any 6-drop I currently run, but it's not far off and I think it it could be an absolute monster in the right environment.

Portal to Phyrexia

The Good: So at 9 mana this is most definitely a cheat target via Tinker, Show and Tell, and Goblin Welder in my cube. What I like about it with Show and Tell is that you don't get got by your opponent having something better than you and I like it with Welder because looping a triple edict is a powerful lock.

The Bad: This card doesn't win on its own and that's a bad sign for something you're jumping through hoops to cheat onto the battlefield.

The Verdict: This card seems like a lot of fun but it's not consistent enough for me to consider it for my cube.

Argoth, Sanctum of Nature

The Good: Castle Ardenvale had a good run in my cube before I cut it, upgrading the token to a 2/2 is definitely interesting. Field of the Dead doesn't need to produce more than a single 2/2 a turn to make an unending horde no control deck can deal with.

The Bad: A sorcery speed activation is rough but not the end of the world. This will also generally ETB tapped. Honestly the mill 3 gives me a bit of pause, of course graveyard synergies are a dime a dozen but on an active you want to do over and over.. you only got 40 cards in your deck.

The Verdict: I'm pretty happy with my suite of lands, but I might swap out Treetop Village for a bit just to test this. Like I said, a 2/2 every turn can be very powerful when it's on card type that has little interaction against it.


And that's a wrap for Brothers' War! This set seems to be great for cube in general and even has a good amount of testables for my personal cube. We also got some long awaited gems in Loran and Iconoclast. I'm quite happy with this set and can't wait to cube with all the new cards. Let me know if you think I missed anything worth talking about and stay tuned for considerations for my Pauper Twobert (I promise this time!). Thanks for reading!

Sunday, September 25, 2022

Warhammer 40,000 Considerations for Possibility Cube

The Warhammer 40,000 commander decks have been spoiled and wow have they excited me enough to delay my pauper cube inclusions post for Dominaria United. That post will still be coming but I need to talk about these awesome 40K cards for my Possibility Cube! 

In this post I'll be writing about all the cards from Warhammer 40,000 that people are talking about or should be talking about for an unpowered unrestricted cube environment in the context of my personal cube, the Possibility Cube. Let's get right into it!

Space Marine Devastator

The Good: Pest Infestation has proven to be an extremely powerful cube card and this card isn't too far off. Whether a single 3/3 or a pair of 1/1 pests are better I'm not sure, but just like with Pest Infestation you get another target and bit of board presence for every 2 mana you want to invest into this. It should also be noted that you do also get the flicker option on the original creature that isn't there for Pest Infestation.

The Bad: The base case of being a 4-mana Reclamation Sage isn't generally where you want to be, even with the extra stats. While it's only an extra 1 mana over Pest Infestation, scaling from 3 to 5 to 7 just seems a lot more feasible than 4 to 6 to 8 with how low my curve has been getting.

The Verdict: This is close enough to an all star cube card that I'm going to at least test it in my cube, although I'm not sure if it will last. Overall, this is a great card to consider for cubes in general and I'd recommend giving it a shot, especially in more midrangey environments!

Triumph of Saint Katherine

The Good: Generally the problem with Miracle cards is that they're only good when you're Miracling them and when you draw them for turn you're not always in a position where you want to cast them, but a 2-mana 5/5 Lifelinker is such an extremely good rate and is so cheap that I can't imagine there being a turn where you draw this and don't want to cast it. It's such a commanding board presence for 2 mana. It also has some inevitability with its death trigger, your opponent really needs to find an exile effect or kill you before you draw this again (which gets really hard if you ever connect and gain 5 life with this card).

The Bad: This card is really really bad if it's in the first 9 cards of your deck (your opening hand and the 2 cards you'll draw without 2-mana open).

The Verdict: Honestly, I'm tempted to say putting this in your deck is worth the mulligans and few games you draw it on turn 1 or 2, having this as a draw somewhere down the line is just about always going to set you up for a powerful turn. I'm definitely going to find a cut for this and see for myself just how often it's a dead card compared to how often it just wins me the game.

Zephyrim

The Good: Spending 2 mana for a 3/3 flier, whether your miracling this or paying for its sqaud cost, is just a very efficient spending of your mana.

The Bad: So while the rate is insane, you really need to be late in the game to start getting that price if you plan on casting this straight up and unlike our last miracle card, this isn't such a crazy threat that you'll want to miracle it every time you topdeck it for turn (although I imagine you often will want to).

The Verdict: Maybe I would have tried it if Triumph of Saint Katherine wasn't printed in the same set, but I do think I'll be passing on this one for now. I am interested to see how it does in any cubes that do test it.

Sicarian Infiltrator

The Good: Shark Typhoon has been very good for me with only its cycling ability. This doesn't have flying nor does it scale in stats as well, but it does scale in drawing you more cards. The extra bodies don't hurt either.

The Bad: For the mana you're paying, 1/2 bodies seem pretty weak to me and that makes this more like an overcosted Divination. I'd much rather have actual Shark Typhoon which scales very fast into a threat. I think Mulldrifter is a better 3/5-mana split card and I'm unsure if this is better than Cloudkin Seer, even with the potential to scale.

The Verdict: I'm undecided if I want to test this one. I do run Cloudkin Seer and, even sans flash, the 2nd power and evasion make it a better turn 3 play and I may just be hoping to do better stuff on turn 5+ where Infiltrator's scaling becomes relevant. Seems like a really nice option for lower powered cubes!

Vanguard Suppressor

The Good: Well Thieving Magpie has certainly come a long way. A flying threat that can potentially replace itself several times over can be very strong. Having multiple of these flying bodies that draw you cards really pressures your opponent to have a boardwipe or just lose.

The Bad: I think it's just too expensive. I really want to be taking advantage of the cheap Squad cost, but when it starts at 6 mana it doesn't seem likely I'll be able to do so effectively.

The Verdict: If your cube is a little more midrangey and games often get to a point where you may be dumping 8+ mana into this, then I would definitely try this card out. For me however, this is most realistically a middling 4-drop and even as a 6-drop it compares poorly to All-Seeing Arbiter which I'm currently playing. My cube will be taking a pass.

Arco-Flagellant

The Good: Adanto Vanguard is just about the best aggressive 2-drop there is, you could do worse on turn 3 albeit you wish to do better. What you get for Arco-Flagellant's higher mana cost is the ability to cast it as a 5-drop that gets you 2 of the creatures in 1 card. Again, you could do worse than 2 Adanto Vanguards off the top when your aggro deck is going a little late.

The Bad: Like I said, as a 3-drop you wish to do better and that floor may just be a little too low.

The Verdict: If you've been an active reader of this blog you'll know I don't run black aggro, so I'll be passing on this one. However if you are running black aggro, I would give this card a test as I still think the archetype is missing a critical mass of decent threats and I think this one may be good enough.

Necron Deathmark

The Good: Ravenous Chupacabra is an all-timer cube card and you're getting quite a lot for the 1 extra mana you're paying for Necron Deathmark. Flash gives you some nice flexibility and the beefy body is an actual threat, even the ability to self-mill is relevant in most decks. The ceiling of surprise blocking with this card for a nice 3-for-1 is very exciting.

The Bad: As much as you're getting for 1 more mana, the important part is the kill on a stick and I'm unsure if it's worth delaying that a turn. 

The Verdict: I want to run this one. Black 5-drop creatures don't really have much competition and this can certainly be powerful, I just worry it's a little too high in the curve. It also adds support to Goblin Welder which I like a lot!

Primaris Eliminator

The Good: Another 5-mana Chupacabra variant and you get quite a bit for the extra cost here as well. You get a better body and the modal option of a 1-sided Infest against your opponent.

The Bad: I think this one suffers from being an overcosted kill on a stick a lot more than Necron Deathmark. This is often my problem with modal spells, sure it's nice to have options, but when you're choosing between overcosted middling effects it just isn't worth it over a straight higher power level.

The Verdict: I think you really need to be in for the Infest mode if you want to run this one, I personally will be taking a pass. I know some value modality more than I however so don't be afraid to give this one a shot if you think it'll play!

Royal Warden

The Good: A mini Grave Titan with Unearth perhaps? I'm always saying what makes Grave Titan so good is that it leaves behind 4 power after your opponent is forced to remove it. Sure a 3/2 may not draw removal as urgently, but 7 power over 3 bodies for 5-mana is nothing to scoff at. The incidental Welder support is again always welcome!

The Bad: The problem I seem to have with black 5-drop creatures always seems to be that I feel like you just want to be doing something better with your mana. You're never running mono-black in my cube and the unfortunate truth is that you'd rather just cast the 5-drop in whatever other color you're in. The tokens coming in tapped really hurts as well.

The Verdict: I think I'm passing on this one, I want to test Necron Deathmark and I don't think I need 2 5-drops raising my current curve. I definitely think this could see play though.

Triarch Praetorian

The Good: Black aggro is in a place where it probably plays most Mistral Chargers with upside. A 5-mana Night's Whisper isn't the best card but it's not bad when you inevitably draw it for free, they can't sit back and take 2 in the air forever. There are also some more synergistic shenanigans a la Unearth and the like.

The Bad: I really really wish this worked with cards like Lurrus, I think this card would have been so much better if it triggered when cast from a graveyard as well.

The Verdict: If you're on black aggro, I think this is a decent consideration, pass for me though.

Knight Rampager

The Good: There it is, the old multiplayer wording that's way better when you happen to have 1 opponent. As with all red 5-drops, you must compare this to the golden standard of the 4/4 hasty dragon and honestly I think this does pretty well. Of course there are exile effects, but I imagine this guarantees 4 damage to your opponent about as much as 4 hasty power in the air. This is also just a huge trampler that is going to kill your opponent dead really fast. Another Welder win as well!

The Bad: I feel like red creatures of all mana costs are the most competitive slots in my cube and 5s are no exception. There's no way Fury, Kiki-Jiki, Thundermaw, or Zealous Conscripts are getting cut, so that leaves Glorybringer for my cube? I really don't think most people would want to have 6+ 5-drops either so I'm not sure where that leaves this card.

The Verdict: I think this card is certainly good enough but I personally don't have room for it in my cube.

Biophagus

The Good: I think this is one of the better 2-mana mana dorks. It's 5-color fixing, has pretty good stats, and has the very relevant upside of buffing any creature you cast off of it.

The Bad: So there are 2 categories of 2-drop dorks I really want to run, the ones with hexproof and the ones that are worth the risk of not having hexproof because they double ramp you (or more). This is unfortunately neither and in my cube the +1/+1 counter upside just isn't good enough.

The Verdict: Not for me, but if you're on stuff like Incubation Druid I think this is a great replacement/supplement.

Hormagaunt Horde

The Good: This is always on rate and has the ability to just keep coming back, even drawing you a card when you cast it later in the game.

The Bad: I'm always saying how great Stonecoil Serpent is, however it's important to note that I'm never saying this about Endless One. The Trample and Reach go a long way to make Endless One a playable card and I'm not sure replacing them with a slow recursion effect and a sometimes draw trigger does enough. This card really needed any way to push damage through.

The Verdict: I just don't think this card does enough to really make it in my cube. Pass.

Old One Eye

The Good: Holy moly, now that's a green 6-drop. 11 trampling power over 2 bodies, what's more to say? How about that you get to recur this bad boy! Not only does killing it leave behind a 5/5, but you better hope you find a more permanent solution because Old One Eye is coming right back in a turn or two. The mana cost is quite splashable too!

The Bad: Discarding 2 is a real cost, but I don't think they could have realistically made it cost one, I'm really grasping at straws here.

The Verdict: This is easily the slam dunk of the set, I really think this rivals Carnage Tyrant as the best green 6-drop for cube and no other card really comes close. I want to ramp into this, I want to Sneak Attack it, Flash it, Reanimate it, I just can't wait to play with this card!

Callidus Assassin

The Good: So this caught my eye as a card similar to the cube all-star Fractured Identity in that you destroy a threat while gaining it yourself. This is 6 mana instead of 5, but you get Flash for your troubles and the ability for blink/recurring nightmare shenanigans.

The Bad: 6 mana is a lot and most people already run very powerful UB cards. The fact that this can only hit creatures is a big downside if we continue to compare this to Fractured Identity.

The Verdict: I'm not looking for another UB card and this isn't better than any of my current ones so I'll be passing on it.

Chaos Defiler

The Good: One more for multiplayer wording that's much better in a 1v1. Now this is what I want out of an extra mana tacked onto Ravenous Chupacabra, even when it pushes it into another color. You upgrade from destroying a creature to destroying a nonland permanent, you get a 5/4 trampler that needs to be dealt with, and once your opponent does deal with it you get to destroy another nonland permanent for your troubles! Play this in a Welder or Recurring Nightmare deck and you have a disgusting combo. Oh and get this, you can kill a Carnage Tyrant or even a True-Name Nemesis with this. That's right, Hexproof and Protection stand no chance as this does not target.

The Bad: I really can't complain.

The Verdict: This is the other slam dunk of the set, it's very good. It's good on its own and gets really gross if you add in something like Goblin Welder.

Mawloc

The Good: I use to run Voracious Hydra in my cube to decent results and this card is much better. The extra stats are easily worth losing trample and no one doubled Hydra's counters anyway. Being able to kill your opponent's mana dork on turn 2 with this is huge. You can't really go wrong with a scalable 2-for-1 creature that is always on rate. If this can be a 4-mana 4/4 that destroys a relevant creature, that right there is a really good card.

The Bad: Fight spells tend to be one of the worse removal mechanics. There will be times where you can't kill something you want to and there will be times where you can kill something but your Mawloc will die too.

The Verdict: I think this is good enough to test, I only run 3 RG cards right now and can find a card to cut to run another.

Shadow in the Warp

The Good: Double ramp and a 1-sided Sulfuric Vortex is not bad for a 3-drop, although it won't consistently be that. I ran Cindervines in the past and I think this will deal more damage than that on average.

The Bad: I think there are much better and more consistent things to be doing. The ramp being only for creature spells is very relevant too.

The Verdict: I know a lot of people like this for cube, but I'm honestly not a fan. I feel like people may be too focused on the ceiling of turn 1 dork into turn 2 this into turn 3 6-drop, when in reality this is mostly a do nothing enchantment. Hard pass for me.

Tyranid Prime

The Good: Evolve is a pretty powerful effect to give all your creatures in a go-wide strategy. This card will also instantly grant a +1/+1 counter to every one of your creatures with toughness less than 4 when it enters the battlefield.

The Bad: I'm not sure I currently have a deck that wants this. While it certainly works well with the token makers, my UG decks probably just don't need this end the game.

The Verdict: I'm going to skip this for my cube, but I really hope to see this in another cube as I like the card and I'm curious how it will do.

Canoptek Scarab Swarm

The Good: I have won a lot of games casting Spectral Procession for 4 mana, it's not the best but 3 1/1 fliers can often make a difference. With that in mind I don't think it's too big of an ask to see this nab 2 creatures out of a graveyard and it may often grab more, especially in a deck where you're running wraths.

The Bad: This card has a very low floor and depending on your environment, it may be there more often than not. It also sucks that you can't really recur the ETB effect in any meaningful way.

The Verdict: I'm always looking for maindeckable graveyard hate which is why I brought this one up, I'm thinking it's probably too inconsistent though. I think I'd be more interested in it in a grindier, lower powered environment.

Thunderhawk Gunship

The Good: We've already talked about how getting two 2/2s on ETB is powerful and these 2/2s come with Vigilance! Of course you lose out on one of the 2/2s if you want to attack, but a 6/6 flier is not a threat to be discounted and it gives your other 2/2 (and your other attacking creatures) flying as well. One of the great things about Wurmcoil Engine is that it's a good threat that has no colored mana requirements, and honestly I think this is the next best colorless 6-drop creature.

The Bad: I mean it's expensive but I honestly don't have a lot to complain about.

The Verdict: This card almost slipped under my radar as it's kind of unassuming, but I kind of want to test it. The more I ponder on it the more I like it. (Another Welder win!)


And that's a wrap for the new 40K cards! I honestly wasn't sure if I was going to run Universes Beyond cards, but then spoiler season started and I forgot all about that in the excitement of all the cool new designs. Without really thinking about it I realized these WERE magic cards to me and it turned out to be one of my most anticipated products. I got so many cool cards to try out and I think there are even more that I didn't list for different kinds of environments. I think I'm most excited for all this support for Goblin Welder. Cards that are good enough on their own with good ETBs that just happen to be artifacts is exactly what I want.

Forgive me for delaying my DMU post for pauper cubes, but it's coming up next! Thanks for reading and happy cubing.

Monday, August 29, 2022

Dominaria United Considerations for Possibility Cube

Full spoilers for Dominaria United are out and it's time to talk about cards from the set I'm considering for my Possibility Cube! 

In this post I'll be writing about all the cards from Dominaria United that people are talking about or should be talking about for an unpowered unrestricted cube environment in the context of my personal cube, the Possibility Cube. As always be sure to check back here later for some DMU pauper cube inclusions. Let's get into it!

Guardian of New Benalia

The Good: Adanto Vanguard and Seasoned Hallowblade are the best aggro 2-drops in white. Why? Because they push damage through and this card does just that. While discarding a card is certainly a cost, Hallowblade has shown me the mere threat of activation is generally enough to dissuade your opponent from blocking. Interestingly enough where the aforementioned cards push their damage through, this one pushes other creature's through. The scry 2 when this Enlists is nothing to balk at either.

The Bad: If this card is not often pushing through damage from a creature that couldn't otherwise attack, then the missing 3rd power is going to be sorely missed from it as an aggro 2-drop. For this reason I'm unsure about people's claims that this is Hallowblade's replacement. I play a lot of white aggro and even my 1-drops are like to attack freely for some time with the efficient removal usually ran in the decks.

The Verdict: This is a good card and for sure needs some testing to see just how good it is. At any rate I will not be cutting Seasoned Hallowblade for this and will instead run them side by side. While it's been performing well I may be cutting Sungold Sentinel for this or perhaps finally say goodbye to Charming Prince.

Serra Paragon

The Good: The value to be had out of this one 4-drop is certainly high. Rebuying a threat every turn is a good way to win the game and recurring lands is always powerful with cards like Strip Mine and Urza's Saga, even if you can only recur them once.

The Bad: Unless you can rebuy something the turn you play it (which generally won't be the case in white aggro where you want to slam your 4-drop on curve), it doesn't pass the Vindicate test and doesn't output enough damage to make that risk worth it. Hero of Bladehold is maybe the only threat I have left that doesn't doing anything the turn it comes down and I keep it around because if it does survive a turn rotation, your opponent is just flat out dead when it attacks.

The Verdict: I personally think the cube community is overrating this one and maybe a little too caught up in its ceiling rather than its floor. If your cube favors more grindy midrange matchups, this card is sure to do work but I'm going to pass on it for my cube.

Temporary Lockdown

The Good: The rate on this card is truly a little nutty. If you hit 1 creature and 1 mana rock then that's more than enough value out of a 3-mana spell. There are more and more tokens in Magic with every set release and this will wipe any of those out too.

The Bad: I honestly don't know what decks will want this, most all decks will play 2-drop mana rock and now there's a real big downside to your boardwipe. My experience with Doomskar against aggro is that just because you can boardwipe on turn 3 doesn't mean you want to, while it can bail you out of the most explosive starts from an aggro deck, Wrath of God will more often be better. Of course it is also an enchantment that can be removed, the "Temporary" in its name gets kind of scary when there are many things under it.

The Verdict: I'm passing on this one. The efficiency is certainly there but I feel like you'll have trouble breaking symmetry like one does with other boardwipes and that can be a huge bother.

Aether Channeler

The Good: Now that's a roleplayer if I've ever seen one. Awhile ago we were printed Callous Bloodmage as the "new Phyrexian Rager" and it didn't quite pique my interest because 90% of the time you were drawing a card over either of its other abilities. This card in comparison has a very relevant bounce ability that can target any nonland permanent and is in one of the blink colors to boot.

The Bad: Man-o'-War is one of my favorite cards and it's just been murdered outside of rarity restricted cubes.

The Verdict: This is exactly the kind of modal spell I like. Man-o'-War and Phyrexian Rager, while not extremely powerful, are 2 already good roleplayers and combining them into 1 creature with both options is some powerful utility. I will be finding a cut for this.

Rona's Vortex

The Good: Bloodchief's Thirst is a true and tested premiere removal spell in my cube and has shown that a 4-mana unconditional removal spell gets really good when paired with a 1-mana conditional removal mode. Now this changes the conditional removal to unconditional pseudo-removal but that isn't exactly a straight downgrade. It's also an Instant as opposed to Thirst being a Sorcery.

The Bad: Unsummon, while it has its peaks, is generally not at the power level of traditional cubes. This is most assuredly only a Dimir card and boy does it have some competition in those slots.

The Verdict: I'd like to play with this in cube and see how well it does as I myself may be underselling it. I don't think I'll be testing it in my cube however. I don't think it's so powerful that I need to play it and it is in truth a fairly boring card for a multicolor slot.

Cult Conscript

The Good: This is exactly what aggro decks want more of, 2/1s for 1 that aren't quite just 2/1s. This one also goes the route of "ETBs tapped" over "cannot block" which I much prefer, being able to block with a 2-power recurrable threat is great.

The Bad: Nothing really bad here other than people may mistake this for an aristocrats card rather than just a black aggro card. Similarly to when Ebondeath, Dracolich was spoiled, people underestimate how unreliable the "if a creature died" clause is and it's because in a game of magic, creatures tend to die all the time. The thing is though, it's not really just "if a creature died" but it's "if a creature died and this is the turn you want to spend mana on this" which is actually quite narrower than you'd think. The truth of it is if you want Cult Conscript's ability to be reliable enough to use it as sacrifice fodder, you need to be able to kill your own creatures and you probably want to be killing sacrifice fodder when you do it... so why do you even need Cult Conscript?

The Verdict: Another win for black aggro, this should be a no brainer if you support that archetype. I do not support black aggro and as I've said this doesn't really do it for me in aristocrats so I'll be passing on it for my cube.

Cut Down

The Good: 1-mana instant speed removal that hits somewhere around 67-70% of the creatures in my cube. That's very good.

The Bad: The creatures it misses are generally the ones that really need to die. While I'm coming back around on it, for this same reason I was favoring the better doomblades over Fatal Push for awhile.

The Verdict: I mean looking at the numbers I can't not test this one. Whether it's better or worse than Fatal Push, or better or worse than Doomblade for that matter, it's going to heavily depend on your environment.

Evolved Sleeper

The Good: Black aggro gets its Figure of Destiny. Attacking for 2 turn 2 is going to be as good as it is in red and white aggro and while I think 3 mana to make it a 4/4 is better than 2 mana to make it a 3/3, it's not a straight downgrade and the deathtouch does a lot to push through damage. The 3 mana to continue to pump it and draw a card is also not unreasonable and a nice option to have.

The Bad: I honestly don't have much bad to say about this one, it's the first Figure of Destiny variant I've liked and black aggro continues to need better support.

The Verdict: Another boring "play the new black aggro card if you're supporting it" verdict but this is quite a fun one. Honestly if I hear good things about this card I may even test it in my cube as some good creature filler.

Sheoldred, the Apocalypse

The Good: The stats are good for the price and a free 4pt life swing in your favor every turn rotation is not a bad deal. Sheoldred and a wheel effect make a fairly game-winning combo as well. While pushed out of my cube, Wildfire decks love the 5th point of toughness.

The Bad: While it passes the Vindicate test, dealing 2 damage is barely passing for a 4-mana investment. Midrange grinds are far from the most common in my cube and Sheoldred doesn't really shine anywhere else.

The Verdict: I'll be passing on this one. If your cube is all about the midrange battles however, then maybe this card could be a fun one.

Stronghold Arena

The Good: I am a huge fan of Dark Confidant and in the right deck this could be that except harder to remove. While not required by any means, the kicker is quite valuable. 3 extra life to work with and spend is a bargain for 1 mana if you have it available.

The Bad: This card does nothing without a board, even for a 2-mana investment that's not generally where you want to be. How good this is entirely depends on not only having creatures, but on having creatures that can get through damage.

The Verdict: I'm honestly not sure about this one, if I can find a cut for it I think I'll test it. I'll definitely be keeping my eye on the results of others that test it and this effect is always fun.

Electrostatic Infantry

The Good: Sprite Dragon is not a bad card in cube and while this doesn't have haste it does have evasion albeit through trample rather than flying. While this is markedly worse than Young Pyromancer against single-target removal, a permanent +1/+1 to your board's total p/t for each instant/sorcery you cast is a proven good rate.

The Bad: As I've said any single-target removal resets any value you've gotten from this card's triggers. I don't think this really has any slot in mono-red either because you generally want to be playing your creatures early-game and using your burn later. Would've liked this more if it triggered on any noncreature spell.

The Verdict: If you're supporting a full on spells matter archetype then I would definitely give this a shot and expect it to be good. My spells matter deck is more of a supported theme and I think I'll be passing on this particular piece for it.

Jaya, Fiery Negotiator

The Good: A 1/1 with prowess is a very good creature to be on a +1. If you're sitting on this planeswalker for multiple turns ticking her up you're probably on your way to a victory.

The Bad: I'm not a big fan of the minus abilities. The -1 is alright but I feel like the +1 is almost always going to be more correct. The -2 requiring a substantial board presence to kill anything moderately big is also a disappointment. Compared to Chandra, Torch of Defiance whose card advantage ability is on a +1 and whose down tick can always deal 4 damage to a troublesome creature, Jaya leaves a lot to be desired.

The Verdict: While versatile, I think Jaya's a step below my current red 4-drops and I'm not looking to increase the count on that particular slot.

Phoenix Chick

The Good: While I'm not high on Raging Goblins, this is one of the best ones yet printed and could certainly be playable. This little phoenix will work very well with Bonesplitter, Eater of Virtue and other ways to buff your creatures. The recursion honestly won't be super relevant with its particular condition but it's nice to have regardless.

The Bad: The unfortunate part about Raging Goblins is that 1 power is so enormously less than 2 that they are almost never as good as Jackal Pup in my experience. Admittedly I don't think that's the case with this card, but there are quite a few red 1-drops that are better than Jackal Pup at this point.

The Verdict: This may be hesitant test for me, I currently am sitting happy on 10 red 1-drop creatures but I think this could potentially be better for the red deck than Blazing Rootwalla or maybe Soul-Scar Mage. I've been wanting to test Rabbit Battery too, overall I'm happy with the amount of options for playable 1-drops we have for RDW nowadays.

Radha's Firebrand

The Good: I have always preferred the 3-power 2-drops that push damage through that white gets over the 2-power 2-drops with haste that red gets. In fact I cut the last of them in Robber of the Rich and Earthshaker Khenra from my cube some time ago as I found they hit only once more often than twice or thrice. Radha's Firebrand has that oh so nice 3rd power and can potentially render a blocker null every turn, I imagine this will hit twice more often than Robber of the Rich hits thrice. I'll be happy to get more options like this one in the future. Also, even at 6-mana the activated ability, while not going to matter most games, I think will matter a bit more than people give it credit for.

The Bad: I honestly don't have much bad to say about this card. Perhaps it ends up being less damage on average than a 2/2 with haste, we'll have to see.

The Verdict: I'm definitely testing this one, I've been wanting more out of my red 2-drops and I hope this is it.

Shivan Devastator

The Good: A 5-mana 4/4 with flying and haste is often good enough for the top end of a red aggro deck and this at the very least can be that. Where this creature lacks the Exert and Ramp of Glorybringer and Goldspan Dragon respectively, it makes up for it in scalability where any extra lands you draw will make this card larger during a topdeck struggle. That is, however, only looking at this as a topend finisher and it is so much more. If Stonecoil Serpent has taught me anything it is how powerful it is to curve into an on-rate creature in an aggro deck. Curving out is the most powerful thing you can be doing as the red aggro deck and while you'll likely play other more powerful cards on curve when you can, you will eventually hit turn N with no N-drop to play and that's exactly where Shivan Devastator slots in.

The Bad: I don't have anything bad to say about this card. I've seen some people say this is inefficient and below rate but I entirely disagree besides maybe the X=1 mode. Flying and Haste are entirely worth the weight of that 1 mana that doesn't count towards X.

The Verdict: Slam dunk of the set in my humble opinion, I got to get my hands on this card!

Squee, Dubious Monarch

The Good: Now that's a Rabblemaster, and it even out damages the OG Rabblemaster the turn it's cast while matching it the turn after. I've found the red deck wants few things more than 3 hasty power on turn 3 so you can imagine this Squee is right up my alley. The recursion is some extra nicety that will matter here and there if not as often as Phoenix of Ash with its evasion.

The Bad: I admit its statline worries me as just a 2/2, I don't run Legion Warboss anymore specifically because I found he could just never really attack. Like the OG Rabblemaster though, I'm willing to bet Squee pumps out enough damage that I can be happy just hoping to cast removal on the would be blocker on turn 4.

The Verdict: It's been a good set for red, I'll find a cut to test this card and I'll be happy to do it.

Quirion Beastcaller

The Good: A bear that will only get bigger and then distribute out its counters to other creatures when it dies, seems like a perfect stompy 2-drop.

The Bad: Green stompy is less popular and powerful than green ramp in cubes of all power levels, I don't see this card changing that.

The Verdict: Fun card and good for certain environments, I myself will be passing on it.

Tail Swipe

The Good: Primal Might is the only fight spell I run and it's performed fairly well for me. This is largely due to its ability to be cast for 1 mana. Tail Swipe is all in all a better 1-mana spell than Primal Might, it is both an instant and provides +1/+1 to your creature. This is certainly the best fight spell they've printed on rate.

The Bad: I don't think I'm in the market for a second 1-mana green fight spell and I'm not convinced this is better than Primal Might. While yes it's a better 1-mana spell, Primal Might is flexible and will be able to kill larger creatures while pushing even more damage through.

The Verdict: I'd not scoff at seeing this in a list but I'm going to stick with Primal Might as my fight spell of choice.

Tear Asunder

The Good: While far off of my cube's power level at this point, Utter End is not an embarrassing cube card. Giving Utter End a playable 2-mana mode may just make it good enough and sometimes a Naturalize is just what you need.

The Bad: Honestly there's not exactly anything bad about this card, both modes are completely playable. It is yet another boring Golgari removal card in the vein of Abrupt Decay, Assassin's Trophy, and Maelstrom Pulse and it can be sad to fill your gold section with just those.

The Verdict: I'll keep this one on the shortlist of cards to put in if I find I have an excess of cuts. I bet it will perform fine in any cube it goes into.

Ertai Resurrected

The Good: I've seen this fancied as a Venser with 1 more power. It is also arguably better to draw your opponent a random card from their deck than put the spell or creature back into their hand.

The Bad: I personally think the comparison to Venser is a mistake, Venser is a tempo play where as Ertai's role is more akin to a simple Ravenous Chupacabra, a card that doesn't draw the opponent one. Venser is more for messing with the foundation the opponent is trying to build rather than straight removing a threat, I have other cards for that and those are the cards I'm playing over Ertai.

The Verdict: I'm not a huge fan, pass from me.

King Darien XLVIII

The Good: An anthem on a 2/3 that can sac itself for some semi boardwipe protection is quite enticing. Selesnya isn't the most popular color pairing in my cube currently and I could see this card pulling a green drafter into it. My problem with Torens was that it committed too much to the board, but this puts power onto the battlefield while also protecting it somewhat.

The Bad: It's really too bad it only protects tokens. I'd have been way more into this if it protected all creatures, although who knows maybe that would've been too much.

The Verdict: While tokens are becoming more and more abundant, I don't think King Darien quite makes it unless you have a specific tokens archetype/theme. An unfortunate pass for me, I really want to find some better Selesnya cards.

Soul of Windgrace

The Good: We talked earlier with Serra Paragon about how land recursion is powerful, putting it on a titan-esque trigger definitely has my attention. A 4-mana 5/4 that immediately recurs a land is not a bad starting point and while the activated abilities aren't the most efficient, drawing a card with extra mana is always a nice option to have and the threat to activate the 3rd ability is powerful enough to dissuade opponents for trying their removal on it.

The Bad: 3-color cards need to be pretty good for people to commit to them and I'm not sure this card would ever be picked unless the drafter happens to already be committed to Jund.

The Verdict: I've been thinking about cutting Omnath from my cube as, while powerful, it doesn't come together very often. Soul of Windgrace could be a fun card to test in its place so perhaps I'll do that. I would not be surprised if it doesn't last long in my list however.


That's what I got for Dominaria United! It seems like we've been slowing down on the crazy powerful cube cards these last couple standard sets, but there are always still a couple slam dunks and overall there are still a ton of fun new tools for lower power settings as well. Let me know if you think I missed any gems or if you just have something to say! Don't miss my next post when I go through DMU considerations for my Pauper Twobert. As always, happy cubing!

Brothers' War Considerations for Possibility Cube

Brothers' War full spoilers are out and that means it's time to go over all the cards I'm considering for my  Possibility Cube! ...