Wednesday, June 01, 2016

Back in Black (and Blue and Green and White and Red and Maybe a Little Colorless)

Get ready for a trainwreck of analogies

Hello again friends. Gaige here just reminding you that I haven't forgotten about you and that my love for you grows daily, just like my Magic collection. Last week I was on a work trip in Alabama and while where I was did in fact have internet, I could only really use it to check email and send distress messages in hopes someone could get me home.

We missed last week but this week I have another episode (edition?) of Wizard's Tower Wednesday. If you missed the article from two weeks ago I talked about one card of each color from recent sets that would be a good fit in your Wizard's Tower. This week I'll be doing one card of each color that would probably not be good in your tower. I do expect a lot of "well I'm putting that in my tower anyways because it will be funny," and that's fine. If you want to be unhappy and ignore this self-proclaimed Wizard's Tower expert then you throw just anything in the tower, but don't start complaining to me when tears and sweat start flowing like...water.

Are you confused about everything I've said thus far and don't know what a Wizard's Tower is? Check out our introductory article that explains at you the best format in Magic.

Understand the format now? No? Good! Just know you probably don't want these cards in your tower.

Someone call the time police. She commited a time misdemeanor.

Let's start of with an analogy since I'm well known in the Magic community for my incredible analogies. "No one in the Magic community knows you." Well that may be true for now, but just imagine down the road if someone ever knows me I can point to this article and say "it all started there with my blind prediction of fame" and we can laugh and laugh... Back to the analogy. You're playing dodgeball and on the other team is a player named Temporal Trespass. He seems like he'll be a good addition to the other team and you're worried. The game starts and Temporal Trespass comes out of nowhere and just takes out 3 people. Now you may win, or you may lose, but three of your friends just have to sit out because someone let this player play who is way too good to be in the league you're in. This card you definitely don't want in your tower. Not that I really know anything about card design, or Magic for that matter, but the mana cost of this card is made to make this a late game card that is still difficult to cast. The three blue mana means in a multicolor deck it's a bit more difficult to cast and the 8 colorless means it needs to be mid to late game for this to cast since you'll either have a decent sized graveyard or a lot of mana. With you having three blue mana on turn three and using the graveyard of everyone's stuff, it would be possible to play this pretty early. Now if you're one of those people who hates your playgroup but it's better than not playing magic, you can use this card to be a real dick. If you have any sort of board advantage you can attack someone twice and put them at a way lower life than the rest of your "friends." Plus if you do delve things away that's less graveyard shenanigans and this format is about 99% shenanigans.

No matter how you say it, someone will tell you're saying it wrong

Sticking with the dodgeball analogy, you have someone on your team named Kalitas. They seem pretty good and may take your dodgeball team to victory. When the game starts Kalitas just starts calling violations left and right and gets the other teams players off the court pretty easily, but through technicalities. You may the win game because of this but no one is having fun and you feel bad because your team is the cause of it.  That's what Kalitas as a card does. I mean he doesn't call violations but that's the same sense of fun you'll have with it. He's pretty easy to deal with but when everything gets exiled and there is no graveyard, your tower gets less sph (Shenanigans per hour).

I'm not gonna lie to you, I'm just keeping this dodgeball analogy train on course until the end of this article. They may make less and less sense as we go on but I'll at least explain why cards are bad after each terrible analogy.

Commander of chair tribal deck

So in your league this one kid shows up and joins your team and they're insanely good so you think "I should keep them around. They are perfect." Then the next week and the following 5 weeks after that they are absolutely terrible. You wonder "well what happened?" It turns out that first week they just had the perfect conditions to make them seem way better than they were. You may see where I'm going with this. With this relying on enchantments, it's going to be really hit or miss on how well it does. Now if you do something cool and build an enchantment themed Wizard's Tower then this card could be awesome (or maybe too good, who knows). In a standard tower with just a jambalaya of everything this card won't be as spicy as you like. It's a cool card but you need to move on and find someone better.

Not to be confused with a hell kite which is just a kite the devil flies.

So there's this guy in your dodgeballs league and he seems all around pretty decent. You add him to your team and all of a sudden you're not sure how he interacts with the rules because he's a bear. How do the rules of dodgeball apply to a bear? Can a bear even play dodgeball? Where is this analogy even going? So this card at it's core is a little underwhelming. A 4/4 flyer for 6 is okay but there are much better 6 cost cards out there. Now landfall can work in Wizard's Tower but when it specifies a land type that changes what the effect is it can get confusing. Since everything taps for any color does that make it every basic land type or is it basic land type rainbow? If you have these rules established in your playgroup and never want to play with outsiders then this card is probably alright to use. If someone who has never played Wizard's Tower before sits down to join you though, they then have to ask "are lands considered mountains or nothing?" Now you all know he has and Akoum Hellkite. This may not be a big deal because he is not terribly spooky but do you really want a game with no mystery?

The upside to swallowing souls are the mouth hands you get

So one guy plays on your team and he's eliminated first. Then the following game you give him to the other team and he's the best player on their team. He comes back to your team and everyone focuses him. Maybe it's just because he hates you or maybe you are just really unlucky but this player only works for your opponents. This card is one that is pretty debatable on whether or not it should be in Wizard's Tower or not. I won't blame you for putting it in there but it may not be a great idea. If you drop this turn 4 and don't already have delirium by then, it wouldn't be surprising to see it online by the time your next turn rolls around. If this didn't have trample I would say this would be okay but being able to trample over things early game can be a game ruiner for some. And as mentioned in the dodgeball analogy, no matter how hard you try, this card just won't be good for you. It will always work for your opponent but never for you.

Ceaseless Hunger is also Dan's official title

So just when you think the day is over, one more player strolls into the gym for a game of dodgeball. They used to pitch professionally for some basballs team, are an ex-military, and play dodge ball professionally. You just know who ever has this person on their team is going to win almost no matter what. Please do not let this player play. Yes there are ways to exile it and yes it does have some form of deck/graveyard manipulation, but it is just obviously too good. It's hard enough to deal with in a constructed format where you have a sideboard to deal with it, but when it's in a format where removal is a luck based draw every turn it will be hard to stop. You can try and tell me why the other five cards would actually be an okay fit but this one just cannot fit. It is in a whole different league and that is not a league you want to play in. Or maybe you just like losing and hate your friends.

Want to tell me I'm wrong in ways I could never think of? Do you actually agree with some of these? Have you been crafting with your cat and want to show it off to someone? Leave a comment or message us for some friendly salami banter.

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