Friday, April 25, 2014

Journey Into Nyx EDH Set Review, Part 4: Red

Let's hope Red gets a better-than-average haul, because the last three colors got shafted. But it's Red, so that's unlikely. But we'll give it a fair chance anyway.


These effects are fun, and if used properly can be powerful. But the symmetry means they can just as easily blow up in your face as you fall victim to your own damage-doubling spell. Flash helps alot here, but time will tell if it helps enough. My feeling is that this is still a bit too gimmicky to really be good.
Obviously you play this in mono-Red. Maybe in two-color decks, if they're basic-heavy. It's not bad at all, just too color-specific.
This isn't really an EDH card, per se. But I am looking forward to running this in my Aurelia deck, which basically plays random, small Doublestrikers and lots of powerful equipment. Suiting this guy up with a Sword and going to town seems fun.
Limited fodder.
Ugh. That mana cost! Wow.
Cool, but not good enough.
Maybe in Uril? Doubt it, though.
Bad Insurrection is bad, but honestly it might still be playable, in the right decks at least.
Definitely not EDH material, but it can punish the early ramping phase of the game. Prolly not worth it.
I'll just quote the venerable Jason Alt on this one:
"It’s so bad. This could have been good and then at the last second someone said “can we add 3 to the mana cost for no reason?” Compare this to Lightning Rift. If this cost 1R it might enable a new archetype. It would be terrible, but it would be the kind of thing someone would try to build. Scry cards cost too much, this costs too much to play and its activation cost is too much. No one has that much mana. Why didn’t they make this good?"
A 1-mana damage spell that is scalable will always have some potential.  Maybe not a lot, but some. I would at least consider this for a Melek deck.
This is pretty cool. I like it. I'll be looking for somewhere to stick a copy of this. Seems iffy, but worth trying out.
Just... don't.
Reprint! Now with 100% less bacon!

Red sucks as usual. But it has a couple of semi-playable spells and the Mythic is pretty bad-ass, if not widely playable. So compared to the other colors, Red really didn't do too bad.

Journey Into Nyx EDH Set Review, Part 3: Black

Are you ready for some more Journey Into Nyx action? Me neither. Let's all go home for the day.

Oh, okay, fine. We'll do another review. How about Black this time?



Not great, but not completely unplayable either. Basically just outclassed...
... by this, for instance. I guess "Four mana to exile a dude in Black" is officially a thing now. It's fine. Dealing with Indestructible things is good sometimes. I personally have yet to feel any compulsion to play one of these spells, but I know they are popular nonetheless. 
I don't see too many Enchantress decks with Black in their color identity, but since Constellation (worst ability name of the block, in a block full of terrible ability names) triggers on ETBF not casting, I would snap jam this into a Zur deck all day.
Great effect, but too expensive to really be good. 
Possibly the best card in the set. Sure it only really goes in decks that already run Grave Pact, but until you play one of those decks, you just can't understand how much of a boon this will be to those decks. 
Generic and bad. Being bad is bad, but being generic is worse.
Fine for Nekusar decks, I guess. Not very good in general though.  Downright suicidal in a competitive group.
Graveyard hate is always good... but this is pretty bad in relation to Black's other options.
Very cool design. Has potential, but I'm not quite sold on it. Let's put it this way: I want this to be good.
To be clear, this is not a very good sweeper when compared to, well, almost any other sweeper in Black or White. It really should say "Exile" instead of "Destroy". But, since Damnation is pushing $50 a pop these days, any budget-friendly sweepers should be welcomed wholeheartedly by Black mages. It's a card well worth picking up if you can't afford Damnations, even if its mana cost is almost as inflated as Damnation's IRL price tag.
Obviously, this is crap outside of Minotaur Tribal. Is that a thing yet? Have we hit critical mass on the Minotaur front? I don't know, I stopped paying attention. If not, I guess we'll have to wait for Return to Theros in about 7 years.
Before you knee-jerk, try to keep in mind, what makes Mindslaver so hated in this format, is Academy Ruins (or Bringer of the White Dawn, or whatever). Getting Mindslaver-ed once is no big deal. Unless your a sissy baby sore loser.

This card is fair. Which means it should be socially acceptable to play it. But don't. Why? Because Mindslaver kinda sucks if you play fair with it. It's only actually GOOD if you lock someone with it. A one and done Mindslaver effect simply isn't all that good (most of the time, exceptions will always apply).
It's a powerful effect, for sure, but if you're okay with making this kind of move, there are better cards with which to make it.

So, Black seems to have fared only slightly better than Blue or White. This set isn't shaping up to be one for the ages, is it? Not so far, at least. A few goodies sprinkled in among a vast sea of chaff. At this rate, Born of the Gods might be the better set, which is saying something, because BNG was not very good. Let's hope the remaining colors can shake things up a bit.

Tuesday, April 22, 2014

Journey into Nyx EDH Set Review, Part 2: Blue

We're back for part two of the EDH set review for Journey into Nyx. As usual, we're looking at Blue for the second installment. Here we go!


I don't like Strive much. It's basically Multikicker and rather expensive to boot. This is one of the few that might see some play. Could be fun.
 I like this guy. He's a Starfish. That taps to Scry 1. Janky but cool. I want to play him somewhere.
Nifty. Should see play. Definitely going in my Melek deck.
I really like this card, or I would if it cost 5 at any rate. It's not terrible, but for six mana, Blue Mages can do better.
Neat, but hard to use effectively. Find a way to jump through the requisite hoops easily and reliably and you've got yourself a fine little card. 
Heh heh heh. Nads.
I so totally didn't understand this card at first. Oh! It's a 1/1 Flyer (not bad) or a bad Control Magic (bad). Meh.
Probably a combo piece somewhere, but terrible beyond that.
Funny, but probably not playable. 
Definitely very playable, but I'm not sure it's good outside of mono-Blue. Maybe?
"Here, you can have mine, I ain't usin' it"
Worst Phyrexian Arena ever? Eh, it's a fine card. I like how Flash breaks the symmetry slightly, giving you the opportunity to get the first draw off it, unlike Howling Mine. Still, not great in most decks.
Ugh. Crap Mythic is crap.
Meh. I mean, I like it... but it doesn't actually DO anything.

So, it turns out Blue is pretty terrible this set as well. There are definitely cards that will work really well in one very specific deck type, but overall, there is not a lot to love here. Oh well.