Wednesday, January 23, 2013

Gatecrash EDH Set Review Part 4: Simic

The Simic are another Guild that I was never much a fan of, but Gatecrash hopes to turn my opinion around on them. I certainly find myself swayed by the early buzz. Until I've actually played with the cards, I can't say for sure, but I really think the Simic of Gatecrash are a huge improvement over the Simic of Dissension.

There are worse 1-drops  you could play in EDH than a 1/1 that will almost assuredly grow larger and larger as the game goes one. Trouble is, I see this guy as an invitation to overextend into a sweeper. 
Interesting take on the mana elf. Could see a bit of play here and there, but I'm not a fan.

Don't misunderstand me when I talk about sweepers and Wrath effects. My complaint isn't "this dies to Wrath", it's "This will die incedentally to a Wrath before you've gotten your mana's worth".

My litmus test is roughly this: Do I need this creature to reliably stay on the battlefield for 3 or more turns before I feel good about casting it? If the answer is yes, then I generally won't play it.
Another take on Beguiler of Wills, and probably just as bad. I don't like these cards that only do stuff if you barf every creature you draw onto the board. At least this one is blue, so you could theoretically counter any sweepers.

LOL, an amusing alternate win-con. You obviously have to jump through hoops to make him work in EDH, as you won't be able to just jam 4 copies into your deck. Rite of Replication is one solution that comes to mind... Often, a kicked Rite of Replication that goes unanswered is game over. This just makes it official.
I can see this in some Edric and Rafiq builds. Can be a decent blocker early, and once it's Evolved a few times, it could be a relevant attacker. 
 The effect on this guy might not seem too impressive at first glance, but giving every creature you make +2/+2 at a minimum, that doesn't go away if the Biomancer bites the dust, is going to be pretty significant in a number of decks. I can't wait to pair this guy up with Talrand, Fable of Wolf and Owl, and Champion of Lambholt. Oh, and imagine Soulbonding a Wolfir Silverheart to this guy. Fun.
I do love me some card draw. Play Fathom Mage turn 4, followed by a Mulldrifter to draw three? Reasonable. I don't usually like my draw spells to be gimmicky, but I think this lovely lady will do nicely in a number of decks. She should see a moderate amount of play.
Awesome Limited fodder, and ingeniously designed to enable Evolve triggers at any stage of the game. I consider this card to be a minor masterpiece of design. I don't however, consider it to be EDH playable. Just play Simic Sky Swallower instead.
As much as I dislike counterspells, I have spent enough time playing with and against them that I believe I can still objectively assess them. This one seems pretty "meh". If I were to use counter magic, I'd play Voidslime, Mystic Snake and Draining Whelk for sure before I even considered this.

It does have cute cross-Guild synergy with Populate. Jus' sayin'...
Okay so this is not going to replace Coiling Oracle or anything, but I think this will get played because it's awesome. It's a fish crab. With the head of a hammerhead shark. And it has Flash. And Evolve. Someone somewhere will find a way to make this work for them. 
Not quite as busted as the Boros Charm, but all three modes have at least a passable chance at being relevant. Unsummon and Giant Growth aren't really great EDH cards, but having both as options on the same card, along with the blanket Hexproof effect? Seems okay to me.
Wee! Fun. I appreciate that they make a lot of these cards force the randomness, not allowing for Top/Scroll Rack/etc. tricks to set it up before hand. Seems destined for almost every URG deck out there (save Animar probably). Intet, Riku and Maelstrom Wanderer all will probably love this card. Outside of those, it just kind of depends.
Are you playing Explore and Divination in anything? If so, you can combine them into one slot, and have room for something else!

Seriously, I think this is good but I'm not sure. It's hard to tell, really. I love Harmonize, and I frequently cast Harmonize and then discard 1 card at end of turn. This would eliminate that discard in most cases, by allowing an extra land drop. Is that worth an extra mana?

I don't know, but I will try it and see.
Seems okay, but fairly gimmicky. Not sure he'll work out to well in most decks. I'd rather just have the Biomancer and be done with it.
Kinda boring, at least to me. She's too similar to Fathom Mage, but in a slightly overpowered way. Fathom Mage slowly builds up in size and card advantage, where Zegana just gives it to you all at once, right off the bat. The fact that she will always be the biggest creature you have when you cast her is a pretty flavorful way to get the "prime speaker" point across.

That she's terrible right after a Wrath is a bit of a downer, but I'm sure that won't stop her from seeing tons of play. At the end of the day, she's just way too good a draw spell to pass up.

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