Monday, 31 December 2012


Wirecat, you so bad! Granted, 4 colourless mana creatures aren't all great (in fact, most are pretty bad), but this thing is useless. It gets taken out an enchantment of all things! It doens't even have to be enchanted; an Urban Burgeoning stops this card dead in its tracks. Not much else to say about this other than it's bloody useless and should not be used in any circumstance.

Pros: 4/3 for 4, it exists
Cons: Arrested by all enchantments even non-Auras
Rating: 0/5

Thursday, 27 December 2012

Then and Now: Guild Mechanics

Yup, with Gatecrash coming out soon, it's time to look at Guild mechanics! Before anyone flies off the handle, the pictures I'm posting are only to represent the mechanics, not the best or worst of the cards with the mechanics, just the mechanics themselves. Also, sorry about the Gatecrash cards's size since I have to take them off of Magic's Facebook page.

Golgari: Dredge vs Scavenge
Golgari BrownscaleDreg Mangler
Dredge is possibly the most powerful of the original mechanics and I'd suspect it's really high up on the Storm Scale. A properly-made Dredge deck doesn't care about anything: a countered/killed/milled card can be brought back repeatedly to punch you in the face over and over. It is so powerful that a key card to most good Dredge decks, Golgari Grave-Toll, has been banned in Modern. Scavenge on the other hand... kind of sucks. The ability could have been good, but the majority costs way too much to be worth it. There's only 1 good Scavenge card in my opinion and that's Slitherhead and it's only because it costs 0. Everything else costs way too much.

Dredge: 5/5
Scavenge: 1/5

Azorius: Forecast vs Detain
Govern the GuildlessAzorius Arrester
Forecast had the potential to be a great mechanic, but the cards with the abilities aren't that great. Sky Hussar is probably the best one since its ETB trigger combos the best with the Forecast cost. Many other cards (like Govern the Guildless or Pride of the Clouds) just cost too much to be worth it. Yes, it keeps the card in your hand, but it still costs a ton. Detain, on the other hand, can easily screw with an opponent's field, even if it's just for one turn. The inability to block or attack is one thing, but the added ability to stop activated abilities is just icing on the cake. The fact that it also lasts until your next turn is those little sprinkles on top of that cake. However that cake is quite small since there are only 3 repeatable sources of Detain (Archon of the TriumvirateMartial Law, and New Prahv Guildmage) and those sources are expensive. But, that's understandable given the power of the ability.

Forecast: 2/5
Detain: 4/5

Rakdos: Hellbent vs Unleash
Rakdos Pit DragonRakdos Cackler
Card advantage? Where we're going, we don't need card advantage! Hellbent is a great mechanic since it works so well with red's lack of card draw and black's wanton discard that it flows so well. Hellbent is just awesome and there's not much else to say about it. Most of the cards with Hellbent are well worth it (the stuff from outside Ravnica kind of suck though). Unleash on the flip side isn't that great (starting to notice a pattern here?). It definitely works with the "suicide black/red" ideology, but it's still not that great. Not being able to block can and will hurt in the long run. The extra power and toughness the creature isn't really a good trade-off in my books. Some cards are worth it, but the majority aren't worth it because you have to live another turn to use the creature. If it gave haste, it'd be a ton better, but it doesn't.

Hellbent: 5/5
Unleash: 1/5

Selesnya: Convoke vs Populate
Chord of CallingTrostani, Selesnya's Voice
Convoke works great in green because of its abundance of tokens. It basically gives token decks a second source of mana which is great. The best example of this usage is with Sprout Swarm being able to recycle the created tokens to cast the spell again. Populate also works great with green for the same reason that Convoke works. The only problem is that both mechanics rely on tokens (Convoke not so much), so a lack of tokens can leave you hurting.

Convoke: 5/5
Populate: 4.5/5

Izzet: Replicate vs Overload
Shattering SpreeCyclonic Rift
Replicate can be really funny. Like Storm, it has a natural anti-counterspell ability to it since you can make copies of the spell and those copies need to be countered (I have a feeling that Replicate was Wizards way to try and sneak a more balanced Storm back into existence). It also gives decent card advantage since it allows you play multiple copies of the spell but only having to use one card. Overload kind of does the same thing, but it doesn't have the same "natural anti-counterspell" ability. I think it's a little too powerful since the spell can't be turned against you with a Redirect or something similar. Overload gave blue a one-sided Shatterstorm (Vandalblast), a one-sided Swift Silence (Counterflux), and an almost better Plague Wind (Cyclonic Rift; yeah it doesn't kill anything, but it gets rid of everything).

Replicate: 5/5
Overload: 5/5

Boros: Radiance vs Battalion
Cleansing Beam
Radiance is one of those mechanics that's really a double-edged sword. While it can destroy an opponent's field, it can equally hurt your size as well. There are only 6 colours (colourless technically counts too, although it won't ripple through colourless creatures) in Magic, so there's a minimum 16.6% chance it'll hit some of your creatures too. Battalion, on the other hand, looks amazing. I know I'm a little ahead of myself here, but giving bonuses when you attack with several creatures is going to be fun. Lightning Helix every combat is going to be fun.

Radiance: 3/5
Battalion: 5/5 (preemptive)

Simic: Graft vs Evolve
Simic Initiate
Graft is a great mechanic since it snowballs into some really big creatures. It allows you to trade in your little early drops (like Simic Initiate) for bonuses on later creatures (like a Simic Sky Swallower). The problem is that the +1/+1 counters aren't really replenishable, so the effect is limited. Evolve looks like a similar effect to Graft, except in reverse. Graft can really be fast but Evolve looks like it'll be better in the late game. I personally think that it may be a little too powerful since cards like Wall of Ice will be able to power these cards up since its toughness will probably be bigger than most other creatures's toughness when it's played. It also affects all of your creatures, so it'll probably be very powerful.

Graft: 3.5/5
Evole: 5/5 (preemptive)

Gruul: Bloodthrist vs Bloodrush
Burning-Tree Bloodscale
Bloodthrist (now a black mechanic) works well with green's trend to have creature superiority and red's ability to do direct damage. Buffing up a creature as a reward for a well-placed Lightning Bolt is great, an fortunately there are a lot of good creatures with this ability (especially since it made the shift to black). Bloodrush on the other hand, looks pretty bad. Mark Rosewater said it's basically going to be "Discard this creature and target creature gets +X/+Y until end of turn where X is the discarded creature's power and Y is the discarded creature's toughness" and I'm not a fan of it. If Rubblehulk is the representative of the effect and the creature's with that effect, it looks like they'll be a bunch of throwaway creatures that aren't going to be worth casting.

Bloodthirst: 4/5
Bloodrush: 2/5 (preemptive)

Orzhov: Haunt vs Extort
Cry of Contrition
Haunt sucks, plain and simple. It just sucks. Sure, you get to cast the spell twice, but it's really unreliable since you may not be able to control when the creature dies. Extort will suck in 1-on-1, but oh man, put that crap in multiplayer and you've got a winner! In a four-player game, an extra white or black mana on each spell for 3 life is definitely worth it. My main question is whether or not each permanent with Extort will stack (I doubt it, but it's nice to dream).

Haunt: 0/5
Extort: 5/5 (preemptive)

Dimir: Transmute vs Cipher
Dimir House Guard
Transmute is a lot more powerful than people think. That Dimir Machinations in your hand? Yeah, it's actually a Vindicate. It always costs 3 too, which means you can start getting your perfect hand early on. However, you do have to have the right card to tutor for the right card. That Dimir House Guard won't get you any closer to that Vindicate you want. I'm not really sure what to expect of Cipher, but it seems like what Haunt was supposed to be. It will really depend on what the spell does, but I'm not sure that this card will be that great. Windfall on a stick doesn't seem like a Dimir ability and it may result in you holding back because you don't want to give your opponent card advantage. Honestly, it seems like just an "okay" mechanic to me. It has potential, to be sure, but without any other cards to back it up...

Transmute: 4/5
Cipher: 3/5 (preemptive)

Tuesday, 25 December 2012

The Other Guys

Gideon JuraKarn LiberatedKoth of the HammerNicol Bolas, PlaneswalkerNissa RevaneTamiyo, the Moon SageTibalt, the Fiend-BloodedVenser, the Sojourner
Vraska the Unseen
As a Christmas present to everyone, here are the rest of the planeswalkers all at once! Just to let you know, my next review will be a review of the new guild mechanics for Gatecrash (probably a Then-and-Now).

Gideon Jura aka "The Dude"
Gideon, you do know that you can't use all your abilities each turn right? The +2 is probably the most common use of this card that I've seen. It basically taps down all of your opponent's creatures for a turn for 1 card. If it survives the attack (it never does), it can use its -2 to get rid of the biggest problem or it can be used when it comes out to deal with something like a Pentarch Paladin. The 0 ability allows it to tie up a blocker during an alpha strike, but I rarely see it used. All in all, not a bad card despite its lack of an ult.

Pros: Can tap down opponent's creatures, destroys tapped creatures, can attack
Cons: No ult, usually dies to +2
Rating: 3/5

Karn Liberated aka "The Big Reset Button"
Screw you Karn. Seriously. Colourless exile?! The world can't handle this power yet! For starters, yes I am aware that it costs 7, but it's a colourless 7 which means it can go into any deck and it's seen play in every colour. The +4 does allow for choice, so it's not the greatest unless you use it on yourself. The -3 is colourless exile and I've already said what I need to say about that. The -14 is... stupid. That ability is a game over since you can set up your board state easily while you're scrolling this card up. If your opponent doesn't hit it, you get 2 permanents. If it's hit, you get more cards since you have to scroll up even more. I think the fact that the plus ability gives so much loyalty makes this card really powerful even if it costs 7.

Pros: Colourless exile, game winning ult
Cons: High mana cost
Rating: 5/5

Koth of the Hammer aka "The Tim Master"
Wow, does this guy excel at speeding up red decks or what? The +1 is okay. It makes your land into a big creature, but the main thing is that it untaps the land so you can use it again. The -2 is where this card shines since it basically makes this card free the turn it comes out in the early game and in the late game, it makes your Blaze all that more powerful. The -5 is nice, but most red decks have won the game long before it's used.

Pros: Really strong -2, nice +1
Cons: Superfluous ult
Rating: 4.5/5

Nicol Bolas, Planeswalker aka "The Old Guy"
I remember when this guy was a creature and i liked it better that way! The +3 of pseudo-Vindicate is really good; there's not much to say about it. The -2 of Mind Control is also good; again, nothing much to say about it. The ult is clearly a recall back to the better days when Nicol Bolas was a 7/7. The only real problem is the cost. Compare it to Karn and you'll see that it costs a smidge too much.

Pros: All abilities are great
Cons: High mana cost, 3 colours
Rating: 4/5

Nissa Revane aka "The Former Worst One"
In case you became stupid, this card is meant to go in an Elf deck. This first +1 gets out a fairly good 2/3 creature for free. The second +1 allows you stall quite easily since it gains you a lot of life quickly. The ult can actually bite you moreso than you may think. Getting all of your elves out in one turn is really nice, but unless you have something like an Akroma's Memorial, a Final Judgement will make you very sad.

Pros: Great abilities for an Elf deck
Cons: Ult can go awry, only usable in an Elf deck
Rating: 1.5/5

Tamiyo, the Moon Sage aka "The One with the Terrible Story"
First, time to explain the nickname. Why was Tamiyo on Innistrad? The moon existed. There was no other reason for her to be there; she thought the moon was kind of cool. It's scary when planeswalkers have the brain of a goldfish...

The +1 is really nice since it taps down any permanent for a turn. The -2 can give you a lot of card draw, and there's nothing that blue likes more than card draw (this is scary when combined with a well-built Azami, Lady of Scrolls deck). The ult is a sign your opponents should scoop since being able to reuse that Mindbreak Trap over and over means your opponents won't have anything to cast. The mana cost on this card is a little high, but it's understandable given the power of this card.

Pros: All abilities are good
Cons: A little high costed
Rating: 4.5/5

Tibalt, the Fiend-Blooded aka "The Worst One"
Tibalt, even your story of being punched across the universe (seriously) isn't enough to save you. The +1 is dumb because you discard at random so you could lose the card you draw (this should have been Gamble). The -4 of Sudden Impact is the only usable ability except for the fact that it's not sudden, so your opponent has time to drop their hand size down or hold off on drawing all of those cards from Tamiyo's -2. The ult of Insurrection is nice, but it means you have to discard cards at random for at least 4 turns, more if your opponent pokes this card. All in all, this card is bad.

Pros: Less-Than-Sudden Impact and Insurrection on a stick
Cons: +1 is too terrible
Rating: 0.5/5

Venser, the Sojourner aka "The Flicker Master"
I love this guy. Turn to Mist for a +2 means your creature with an ETB trigger will be triggering each turn. The -1 is the best ability in my opinion since it's going to result in a lot of damage being dealt to your opponent. Why isn't the ult my favourite ability? Because I've never met anyone who'll stay in the game after it's been used against them. It's just that powerful. Just like Tamiyo though, the cost is a little high but again, it's worth it.

Pros: All abilities are good
Cons: A little high costed
Rating: 4.5/5

Vraska the Unseen aka "The Vindicator"
I remember when this card was previewed, people were saying that this card was "almost too bad to play" because the ult wasn't worth it. People were clearly not paying attention to the other abilities. The +1 makes it so that no one will want to hit this since it'll take the creatures down with it. The -3 is where this card shines. Another pseudo-Vindicate effect, it's a lot more powerful than people think. Getting rid of that key creature/enchantment/planeswalker early in the game can really turn the tables of the game. That's the difference between this and Nicol Bolas: the speed. The ult can win you the game, but the Assassin tokens have no evasion meaning they'll be blocked all-day, everyday.

Pros: Deathtouch, pseudo-Vindicate
Cons: Ult tokens have no evasion
Rating: 4/5

Sunday, 23 December 2012


Tezzeret the SeekerTezzeret, Agent of Bolas
I often think that if planeswalkers had been made into cards during the Mirrodin block, Jace might have been replaced by Tezzeret.

Tezzeret the Seeker aka "Good Tezzy"
The +1 and -5 on this are pretty decent, allowing you to reuse tapable artifacts and turn artifacts (even lands) into powerful creatures. However, the thing that really makes this card powerful is its -X. "But what could it possibly look for?" I hear being cried out. Well, here's just a short list: Ashnod's AltarCrucible of WorldsExtraplanar LensMaster TransmuterMyr Galvanizerany artifact on the battlefieldStaff of DominationSword of [insert name here]Unwinding ClockWhispersilk Cloak, and of course, Reflecting Mirror. In short, not much. Now, it does cost 5, but have a look at the long list of mono-blue artifact tutors. There's only 1 other tutor that doesn't require sacking another artifact: Fabricate, so a reusable tutor in blue is well worth the 5 mana.

Pros: Good all-around abilities
Cons: Only works in an artifact deck
Rating: 4/5

Tezzeret, Agent of Bolas aka "Evil Tezzy"
Again, another artifact-focused cards. The +1 of Peer Through Depths but for artifacts is good because it allows you to dig through your deck to find the right artifact for the job. The -1 lets you hit someone hard with a Welding Jar or something similar. The -4 is pretty spectacular given that you can feasibly have an all-artifact deck and this can hurt a lot (think something like 7-12 damage). This card is 2 colours, but with the Mana Myr, artifact decks usually are not wanting for colour fixing.

Pros: Good all-around abilities
Cons: Only works in an artifact deck
Rating: 4/5

Thursday, 20 December 2012


Sorin MarkovSorin, Lord of Innistrad

I still don't know what to think of Sorin. He always just seemed like a guy who just didn't want to be bothered until the Eldrazi showed up and then had to go deal with people messin' up Innistrad.

Sorin Markov aka "Sorin, the Vampire"
I was really considering nicknaming this card "The Wump Stick" because that's what this card tends to be. The -3 can really turn the tables on an opponent quite quickly especially in an EDH game. The +2 is a little off in my opinion. The ability is great, but why does it give you +2 loyalty instead of just +1? The -7 of Mindslaver is hilarious whenever it happens. Now the cost is definitely an issue. This card is not splashable and is expensive for it's colour. This card has pretty much been relegated to the world of EDH.

Pros: Great -3 and -7, decent +2, quick ult charge
Cons: Expensive, triple black mana
Rating: 3.5/5

Sorin, Lord of Innistrad aka "Sorin, the General"
This card came out during the era of black/white tokens and it was glorious. The +1 makes a great addition to any token army, especially since it has lifelink. The -2 emblem is also really nice because emblems can't be dealt with and that +1/+0 will add up over a bunch of little gribblies. The ult of improved Terastodon is super awesome since you get the creatures or planeswalkers afterwards. However, outside of a token deck, this card is pretty underwhelming. The 1/1 is too small to warrant the initial 4 cost and the +1/+0 only really works with a large number of creatures, otherwise it's just a little bit more damage.

Pros: Great in a token deck
Cons: Underwhelming outside of a token deck
Rating: 3.5/5

Wednesday, 19 December 2012


Liliana VessLiliana of the VeilLiliana of the Dark Realms
I consider Liliana to be the sexiest planeswalker, hand's down. And no, that's not because of the controversial Steve Argyle work. She's dark, sexy, and smart, a killer trio.

Liliana Vess aka "Professor Liliana"
What's better than Imperial Seal? How about a repeatable version that doesn't hurt you (or cost $700)?! That's essentially all this card is and it's great. The +1 is nice because it gives you card advantage and the -8 can be really good late game, but let's face it: this card is 2 Imperial Seals on a stick. This does cost 5, which is always a little high, but the effects kind of offset the cost.

Pros: Repeatable tutor, discard engine
Cons: A little expensive
Rating: 4.5/5

Liliana of the Veil aka "Cultist Liliana"
I run this in my Maga, Traitor to Mortals EDH since it revolves around players discarding all of their solutions. Other black decks like this card because they don't mind discarding creatures since they can easily bring them back if the deck is built around it (being black and all). The -2 forced sac is nice too, but it does let your opponent pick which creature to kill off. The Do or Die ult is really great because it hits all permanents, meaning you can easily make a "land" pile and an "everything else" pile. Your opponent will probably pick the "everything else" pile, but what's this? You had an Overwhelming Forces in your hand and your opponent can't counter it since they have no mana? [insert evil laugh here]. This card is also really cheap, allowing for board control early in the game.

Pros: All discard, super-Do or Die, cheap
Cons: -2 allows for choice, all discard
Rating: 4.5/5

Liliana of the Dark Realms aka "Explorer Liliana"
Colour pie? What's that? Black should be good at land fetching too! This card's +1 is quite good since it can look for cards like Leechridden Swamp or Overgrown Tomb in addition to basic lands since they are Swamps too. The -3 of either black Blanchwood Armor or Romra Doowhcnalb* (see what I mean about "What colour pie"?) is really awesome since it either buffs a creature by a lot or kills an indestructible thing since it's not a destroy effect. The ult for this is just a superfluous ability since you're probably already far enough ahead to win the game or are just one turn off.

Pros: Black land search, -3 can kill or buff, great ult
Cons: Ult is a little superfluous
Rating: 5/5

*Pronounced "ROHm-Ra DOO-wuh-ch-NAL-buh"

Monday, 17 December 2012


Sarkhan VolSarkhan the Mad
This guy likes dragons. Can't you tell? If you can't, HE FRAKING LOVES DRAGONS!

Sarkhan Vol aka "Sane Sarkhan"
Why is this card's +1 really, really powerful? Seriously, what colours like haste? Red and green. What colours like being bigger? Red and green. The -2 is also fairly nice since there's nothing sweeter than beating someone down with their own creatures. The ult is weird since you'll probably have won by that point because you've been beating your opponent with big creatures. In multiplayer games it's good I guess. As for it's cost, I'll just say this: Fires of Yavimaya costs one less. Need I say more?

Pros: +1 and -2 are really good
Cons: Ult is only really good in multiplayer
Rating: 5/5

This card kind of confuses me. The 0 is good since it's extra card draw in black/red, although you'll probably kill Sarkhan unless you only have cheap things (what not run Dark Confidant instead?). The -2 is a sacrifice kill instead of a "destroy" effect, but you still give that opponent a 5/5 dragon (unless you kill your own gribbly). The -4 is odd because you've probably already won the game at the point when you'll use it. Again, I guess it works in multiplayer in order to kill 2 players. Cost is a little high in my opinion since you can't recharge it. Maybe 1BBR?

Pros: Sac kill outlet, B/R card draw, dual player kill
Cons: Gives out dragons, -4 only really works in multiplayer, a smidge expensive
Rating: 3.5/5

Saturday, 15 December 2012


Garruk WildspeakerGarruk, Primal Hunter
Garruk RelentlessGarruk, the Veil-Cursed
Oh, Garruk. The man's man. The man's man's man. The manliest man in Magic (besides Angus Mackenzie of course).

Garruk Wildspeaker aka "Garruk, The Land Manager"
I think this Garruk is the best Garruk and is in the running for best planeswalker. The +1 makes it into an Argothian Elder and that alone is an awesome ability. The -1 gives you a great option if you're low on creatures. Finally, having Overrun as the ult is really nice and can be used quite quickly (as long as you don't mind losing Garruk in the process).

Pros: Great +1, fast ult
Cons: Using ult quickly will kill Garruk
Rating: 5/5
Garruk, Primal Hunter aka "Garruk, The Beast Master"
This Garruk isn't the greatest, but it's still pretty good. The +1 is pretty solid, giving you a decent creature token. The -3 is really good for green decks since they lack really good draw engines. The -6 is a game winner, plain and simple. The reason I don't really like this card as much as the last one is its cost and +1. When compared to Garruk Wildspeaker, the +1 is kind of "meh". Sure, it makes a 3/3 every turn, but the problem with that is its cost. It may only be one more mana that Wildspeaker but it's a green mana symbol, meaning it's a little harder to put into 2+ colour decks.

Pros: Great -3 for green decks, game-winning ult
Cons: "Meh" +1, expensive
Rating: 3.5/5

Garruk Relentless/Garruk, the Veil-Cursed aka "Garruk, The Prize Fighter"
I wish I could talk about these cards separately, but I can't. The first side of this card is pretty bad and is going to drag down this card's overall score. The first ability is easily beatable by Giant Growth, something which I think is just terrible game-wise. The other ability is "meh" when compared to Garruk, Primal Hunter or Garruk Wildspeaker's creature creation abilities. The flip side of this card is great however. Each ability is just awesome. A 1/1 with deathtouch is just as good as a 3/3 when it comes to blocking, so it's +1 is really good. That same 1/1 can become a Dread Cacodemon or something similar with the -1 ability. Finally, the super Overrun ult is really great in the right deck, however graveyard hate can screw with this a lot. In short, the 2nd side of this card is great but you unfortunately have to use the 1st side before you can get to the good side.

Pros: Black/green side is awesome
Cons: Front side is kind of bad
Rating: 3/5

Friday, 14 December 2012


Elspeth, Knight-ErrantElspeth Tirel

Ah, Elspeth. Originally from... somewhere and now fighting on Mirrodin, she was the first planeswalker to have 2 "plus" abilities and is the only planeswalker who can activate their ult on their second turn without dying (Garruk RelentlessSharkan the Mad, and Gideon Jura don't count because they have no real ults).

Elspeth, Knight-Errant aka "Elspeth, the First Avacyn"
I love this card. The first +1 is kind of okay, but this card's real strength lies in the Angelic Blessing every turn. The buff and the evasion make your big threat (a Meglonoth for example) into an even bigger threat. The ult is also really nice, but you might not have to use it after 4 turns of punching your opponent in the face for a lot of damage.

Pros: A great +1 and ult
Cons: Mediocre other +1
Rating: 4.5/5

Elspeth Tirel aka "Elspeth, the Reckoner"
Again, another great card. The +2 is a weaker Festival of Trokin, but it's still great for the +2 loyalty. The -2 of Even the Odds is also really nice since it can, well, even the odds. The ult is beautiful weapon for white weenie decks or just to reset the board. If your opponent has played a lot of creatures you can reset the board and then use a combination of the +2 and -2 abilities to both get a lot of creatures for free and gain a fair bit of life. This card is a little expensive, but since it is a free boardwipe with impressive abilities, it's a just cost.

Pros: Potential for a lot of lifegain, ult on turn 2, boardwipe, creature generation
Cons: Expensive, +2 is pointless without creatures
Rating: 4/5

Tuesday, 11 December 2012


Ajani GoldmaneAjani VengeantAjani, Caller of the Pride

The only Lorwyn planeswalker not to appear in a duel deck, Ajani is an interesting character. I'm still not sure why he was on Lorwyn given that he's from Naya...

Ajani Goldmane aka "Calm Ajani"
I love this version's -1. It's easily the best ability on this card. The +1 is a worse Healing Salve (think about that; a worse Healing Salve) and the -6 is okay I guess. In a 60-card format, you'll be making a 12/12 or 14/14 at most (unless you're making a specific lifegain deck) and it doesn't come with evasion, so it doesn't make that much of a wump. Again, the ability to give all of your creatures +1/+1 counters and vigilance for a turn is just awesome.

Pros: Mass vigilance, mass +1/+1 counters
Cons: Really lackluster +1, average -6
Rating: 3/5

Ajani Vengeant aka "Angry Ajani"
This card has the second most annoying ability on any planeswalker (excluding ults): Tap target permanent; It doesn't untap during the next untap step. Seriously, that can screw up your board a lot more than you might think. The -2 of Lightning Helix is also really good, although the fact that you can only use it once without pumping the card up is unfortunate. The mini-Armageddon for an ult is a really nice touch, despite the fact it takes 4 turns to charge.

Pros: All the abilities are awesome
Cons: Takes a long time to charge/recharge
Rating: 4/5

Ajani, Caller of the Pride aka "Ajani, The Cat God" 
I'm still not sure what to think of this card, mainly because I've only seen it in play once. The +1 is the weakest of sauce. It's just bad. The -3 is amazing (possibly the best Ajani ability) and the -8 is middle of the road. The ult is really good, but it takes 5 turns to charge and, by then, you might not be making that many kittys. It's a lot like Goldmane in that sense, but at least this ult is making a lot of creatures without evasion (which is kind of like evasion) instead of just one big creature.

Pros: Really good -3, ult can make a lot of creatures
Cons: Unimpressive +1, long ult charge time
Rating: 3.5/5

Saturday, 8 December 2012


Chandra NalaarChandra AblazeChandra, the Firebrand
Since I covered Jace first, I might as well cover the planeswalker he first fought: Chandra. 

Chandra Nalaar aka "Pokey Chandra"
I think this version of Chandra is the weakest. The +1 and the -X abilities are both restricted to what they can target. The -8 is really nice though. This version also seems too expensive for what it does.

Pros: Really nice ult
Cons: Expensive, underwhelming +1, restricted abilities
Rating: 2/5

Chandra Ablaze aka "Crazy Chandra"
This is my favourite version of Chandra, mainly because all of the abilities work with each other (sort of). The +1 can let you set up for a really nice ult and the -2 puts everyone on the same playing field as well as putting things in your graveyard for her ult. This version is also expensive, but I personally think it's worth it since it can do a lot of damage quite quickly.

Pros: Abilities synergize really well
Cons: Discard to function, a little expensive
Rating: 3.5/5 

Chandra, the Firebrand aka "Sorceress Chandra"
The most recent version of Chandra seems to be an attempt to blend the first 2 versions of Chandra into one. They revised the +1 from Pokey Chandra and actually made it worth using and the -2 has been changed from a pseudo-Incendiary Command to a slower Reverberate. The Infernoish effect for an ult is also very nice. I find it strange that this is the only Chandra whose ult can't be activated after 2 turns like the other two. All in all, this Chandra fits right in-between the other two; not that great, but not that bad either.

Pros: Reverberate and Lava Dart on a stick, cheap
Cons: Slow ult
Rating: 3/5