The Daily Shot: The Onslaught White Review, H - Z
Harsh Mercy 2W
Each player chooses a creature type. Destroy all creatures that aren't of a type chosen this way. They can't be regenerated.
"There is no greater burden than choosing who to save." - Kamahl, druid acolyte
The theme-deck Wrath. Might not see use outside of Limited unless you regularily play people who forget that Basking Rootwalla is actually a Lizard, but I'm not going to say either way just yet.
Say you build this:
That might be good, right? Any deck with diverse creature types is going to get stopped cold with the Edict from hell. Of course, with Monoblack Control and Psychatog, the one-creature wonders, running rampant...I'm not so sure that a deck with Harsh Mercy is the right metagame call.
Enchant Creature Uncommon
Enchanted creature gets +2/+5.
Cycling 3 (3, Discard this card from your hand: Draw a card.)
"I trust what I make for myself. Do you trust more what is made for you by another?"
Fat pants! A nice creature enchantment for Limited - though that's the format where you're least likely to have no creatures, making the cycling a tad unnecessary. It'll never see play in Constructed regardless of cycling.
I like the flavor text. If someone asked me that, I'd flash them my copy of Jakub Slemr's deck from GP London and say:
"Well of course, DUUUUUUUH."
Untap target creature. It gets +2/+4 until end of turn.
"We will force the Cabal into their own pits!"
Great combat trick - if I'm drafting white I'll always want this in my deck. Creates a big surprise blocker, or you can just use it as a Giant Growth. The cost is reasonable, too. Looking at this now makes me realize what I was missing back when I was drafting G/W Invasion Block and passing Gerrard's Command.
Good flavor text again. I hope the Cabal use"Right Guard."
Creature - Soldier Uncommon
Ironfist Crusher may block any number of creatures.
Morph 3W (You may play this face down as a 2/2 creature for 3. Turn it face up any time for its morph cost.)
Could be useful as a surprise Fog (morph and block 'em all!) or with many Clerics and Battlefield Medics. With a couple of Medics, this guy can absorb seven damage before he folds - that's not bad for turn 5.
...he sucks in Constructed.
Imagine a trumpet flourish right here. Let's hear it for Ironfist Crusher! Printed for Limited and with no other aspirations whatsoever!
Creature - Cat Giant Legend Rare
Whenever Jareth, Leonine Titan blocks, it gets +7/+7 until end of turn.
W: Jareth gains protection from the color of your choice until end of turn.
Light's champion in the stronghold of darkness.
King of the jungle? I can dig it. The cat, much like Canada's national animal, the beaver, is a proud and noble creature.
Wow, is this guy big. When he comes down on turn 6 (or, more likely, turn 7), your opponent will not be doing any attacking unless they have some serious countermeasures. Jareth is almost impossible to remove and, given time, he'll win you the game just by denying your opponent any fruitful attack phases.
As cool as Jareth might be, though, he is only for Limited. How sad is it that the ultimate example of a defensive creature gets knocked out of the way by a simple Chainer's Edict?
Don't forget to sing the song when you cast him:
Meow Mix Draft Rares -"The rip of choice when all your deck needs is a big pussy."
Attacking doesn't cause Soldiers to tap.
2W: Put a 1/1 white Soldier creature token into play.
Newcomers to Otaria find themselves at the bottom of the heap. In the pits, they at least have the chance to climb atop a heap of bodies.
Mike Flores wrote about this one. I don't have much to add - this card is going to show up somewhere in a Counter-Post/Goblin Trenches-style build. Viva la Flores!
Creature - Cleric Uncommon
2W, T, Sacrifice Nova Cleric: Destroy all enchantments.
"Our noblest thoughts are our very first and our very last."
I didn't usually play Woodland Druid unless I had a very good reason - like multiple Seton's Desires, Elephant Guides, or Wormfang Drakes. 1/2 creatures just don't do enough. Nova Cleric is trying to make himself useful by adding an ability, and they've partially succeeded. The ability isn't great, but he's a cleric. You play him or you'll be wearing cement shoes and flying off the nearest pier. Every capo (Battlefield Medic) needs a good legbreaker.
The owner of target nonland permanent shuffles it into his or her library, then draws two cards.
"A richer people could give more but they could never give as much."
Many uses, but it doesn't do any one thing very well unless you want to get pretty specific. It can function as removal, but the guy is going to draw two cards. It can function as card-drawing, but you need to shuffle a permanent you control back into your library.
Oblation can save your own permanents from removal... Sorta. They still go away, but you get two cards and they might come back later.
The best use of Oblation is to eliminate any cards that have been stolen from you. That way, your opponent can not use them, and you draw two cards. How often will that situation come up? No idea, but it's hardly a sure thing.
Ugh, I just noticed that it was rare. Flicker is back for revenge on the anniversary of the day we all betrayed it.
Enchant Creature Common
Enchanted creature can't attack or block.
Even those born to battle could only lay their blades at Akroma's feet.
This good ol' boy is a hard dog to keep under the porch. Back for the third time, and sure to see a bunch of Limited play. Yeeeeehaw!
Creature - Soldier Uncommon
You may choose not to untap Pearlspear Courier during your untap step.
2W, T: As long as Pearlspear Courier remains tapped, target Soldier gets +2/+2 and has"Attacking doesn't cause this creature to tap."
Not sure how good or bad this guy is going to be. The ability is expensive if you want to use it to control combat, but if you keep him in one spot, you need only pay it once. 2/1 for 2W isn't going to make Limited players keel over with orgasmic glee, so the power of the ability is the important consideration.
Middling power level, mid-range card. Onslaught has a lot of these, which is sure to make for interesting Limited play.
Choose one - Destroy target enchant creature; or target Soldier gets +2/+2 until end of turn; or attacking doesn't cause creatures you control to tap this turn.
The charms have all got a Limited niche. Piety Charm is especially good in a Soldier deck, obviously, where it serves as a mini-Giant Growth that other drafters, lacking Soldiers, will probably have to pass. The 'destroy target enchant creature' will come in handy as well, dropping a dime on an opposing Pacifism or whatever else. The third ability will be useful for when you need to race, or use tap abilities while still serving with creatures like Pearlspear Courier or Grassland Crusader.
You gain 6 life.
Cycling 1W (1W, Discard this card from your hand: Draw a card.) When you cycle Renewed Faith, you may gain 2 life.
Lifegain - a mechanic so ass that it could go driving out in the country, roll down the driver's side window, and get arrested for mooning. This one could be a lot worse, like Invigorating Falls or Folk Medicine, but I still don't want it in my deck.
Righteous Cause 3WW
Whenever a creature attacks, you gain 1 life.
"Until the world unites in vengeful fury and Phage is destroyed, I will not stay my hand." - Akroma, angelic avenger
GT(looking at camera with microphone in hand):"Hi, I'm Geordie Tait, reporting from outside the WotC R&D offices. I'm here to get comments from Randy Buehler regarding the recent revelation that"Selecting 8th Edition" may have been rigged like any three out of four randomly chosen Don King fights."
(Randy walks out of the front door of the building.)
GT(rushing over to shove microphone in Buehler's face):"Randy! Randy! Can you comment on recent allegations that 'Selecting 8th Edition' vote totals were, in fact, fabricated and totally fraudulent?"
GT:"I'm sure a lot of people noticed that Dwarven Miner, ahem, mysteriously lost to Blood Moon - right before it was revealed that Dwarven Blastminer was coming out in Onslaught. Was there any connection?"
RB:"No connection. Let me through, please."
GT:"It was pretty lucky, don't you think? I mean, why even give the public a chance to unwittingly clog the environment with two functionally identical cards?"
GT:"Just a moment, sir! What do you have to say about the, *cough*, fan-voted exclusion of Orim's Prayer in favor of Noble Purpose, with Orim's Prayer clone 'Righteous Cause' being printed in Onslaught? Are you actually claiming that that vote wasn't tampered with, to prevent the selection of a card with functionality included in an upcoming Onslaught release?"
RB(pushing past):"No comment."
GT(moving with Buehler, still with microphone in his face):"Randy, just a moment! Can you honestly say that the voting between Rewind and Dismiss wasn't influenced by the future release of the 'similar to Dismiss' four-mana-counter Discombobulate? Are you saying that, sir?"
GT:"Don't shove a member of the press!"
(Randy pulls Geordie's shirt over his head and starts punching him!)
GT(muffled by own shirt):"Get this on camera! He's assaulting me!"
(Abruptly, the transmission is cut off.)
Enchant Creature Common
Prevent all combat damage that would be dealt to and dealt by enchanted creature.
"Those who live by the sword will die by the sword. I choose to do neither."
Gaseous Form in white? Not quite, but close. While the Gaseous Form only prevented combat damage, this thing is like Inviolability and Pacifism all in one, combining elements of both into a card that isn't really either. On one hand, the creature removal side is not as good as Pacifism, and it costs more. Alternatively, it's also possible to use this on your own creature, creating an invincible blocker or a troublesome utility creature that red can't remove. My jury is out on this one - after I play with it a while, I'll form a better opinion.
I live by the pen and die by the pen - which, as you all know, is mightier than the sword. Or maybe that's just something that guys like me, who don't know how to use swords, like to say.
As Shared Triumph comes into play, choose a creature type. Creatures of the chosen type get +1/+1.
"Win together, die alone."
Now this is Constructed quality for theme decks. Fast, efficient, and with little chance of backfiring, this card is easy to cast and can really power up a swarm of swinging men. If there's anything that gets me going, it's a big pile of swinging men.
Now... Is it better than Divine Sacrament? Well, I guess time will tell on that one.
Oh, shut up.
Creature - Cleric Wizard Uncommon
Tap two untapped Clerics you control: Prevent all damage target creature would deal this turn.
Tap two untapped Wizards you control: Prevent all damage target spell would deal this turn.
"You may fight if I deem your cause worthy."
Oh, sweet lord in heaven, he costs ten thousand mana! I'm trying to shut my eyes, but I can still see the awful casting cost. Let me let you in on a little secret:
This is a six casting cost pile of dung than can get instantly killed, for one mana, by both the common red charm and the common black charm. Heck, the abilities it has aren't even that good. After all, how many creatures can one man tap? I'm only human.
Also, what sort of arrogant, holier-than-thou flavor text is that? I hope there are some worthy causes in the sideboard, or in the urinal, because that is the only place you're going to find this piece of crap.
Whenever a creature is put into your graveyard from play, you may pay 1W. If you do, return that card to your hand.
"We lay our dead to rest in a beautiful bed, in hopes that the Ancestor will think it a fit cradle for the next life." -Mystic elder
Long, pretentious name for card that I can't really gauge accurately.
Let's look at what it does: The effect is obviously powerful - as long as you have the mana, you can recur your creatures infinitely. In that way, it's a bit like Enduring Renewal. This sucker might be useful with cards that sacrifice to accomplish certain effects. For example, you can start thawing every land out of your deck with a Diligant Farmhand, or you can creature a huge pile of Zombies with Rotlung Reanimator. Or tons of Insects with the green"Symbiotic" creatures.
Perhaps the greatest hope for this card is the existance of Wall Of Mulch, which allows an extra card draw with every 2GGW paid.
A good base for a deck might be something like the following:
4 Wall Of Mulch
4 Sigil Of The New Dawn
3 Krosan Tusker (just for cycling, of course)
3 Symbiotic Beast
3 Diligant Farmhand
4 Mirari's Wake
4 Moment's Peace
3 Ravenous Baloth
4 Living Wish
3 Kirtar's Wrath
4 Krosan Verge
21 other land
The idea with this engine is to get a Wake in play, and then just go insane creating tons of tokens, gaining massive life, drawing huge amounts of cards, and generally winning the game. Again, this is a very, very rough outline of deck - but with time and testing, it might prove to be fruitful!
Sunfire Balm 2W
Prevent the next 4 damage that would be dealt to target creature or player this turn.
Cycling 1W (1W, Discard this card from your hand: Draw a card.) When you cycle Sunfire Balm, you may prevent the next 1 damage that would be dealt to target creature or player this turn.
I guess this isn't all bad, though. It can nab you a card and save a man at the same time.
Creature - Cleric Rare
You can't be the target of spells or abilities.
So great is his certainty that mere facts cannot shake it.
Curses! What is MBC going to do without Chainer's Edict to pull them out of the fire?
Cast Innocent Blood.
Or Ghastly Demise.
I guess they celebrated the release of True Believer by also printing Infest and Smother, both of which are probably going to be widely played. This guy is no answer to MBC: He is, however, a good answer to something like Oath Of Druids.
Remove target attacking creature from the game if its power is less than or equal to the number of Soldiers in play.
The tall, reedy grass of the Daru Plains rustles loudly in the winds, a perfect cover for any ambush.
This may be the latest drafted piece of removal in the set. Are you the Soldier drafter? Yes? Then you'll be getting these. Just think of the attacking creature as a violator of the"don't ask, don't tell" policy.
Creature - Nomad Cleric Rare
W, T: Search your library for a land card, reveal it, and put it into your hand. Then shuffle your library. Play this ability only if an opponent controls more lands than you.
Land Tax on wheels - and that's bad, because it's a lot easier to get rid of a 1/1 than it is to get rid of Land Tax. Still, Weathered Wayfarer can get any land, including cycling land (draw an extra card!), man-lands (Mishra's Factory and friends) and specialty land (Wasteland and Strip Mine to the rescue), so he's got a lot of potential.
Oh, and he can get the crucial mana you need to unscrew yourself, as well. This guy is going to be all over the place... And just how good is he with Sylvan Safekeeper? We're talking serious deck thinning and tutoring power. In other formats, he's crazy with Zuran Orb and other land sacrificing effects.
Anyhow, I really like Weathered Wayfarer. I think we'll be seeing a lot of this card.
Creature - Soldier Rebel Uncommon
W, T: Tap target creature.
Morph W (You may play this face down as a 2/2 creature for 3. Turn it face up any time for its morph cost.)
His bolas whirl like galaxies, but it's his enemies who see stars.
Rebel? DEAR GOD, NOT AGAIN!
Oh wait, he's the only one. Good.
This guy is just like Master Decoy and Nomad Decoy and Thornscape and Stormscape Apprentice and the like. A tapper. That means he's going to be a high pick. He is the first tapper ever, however, to be efficiently costed. How useful is the tapper ability in Constructed?
No clue. Part of me says that he can tap troublesome creatures like Psychatog or Nantuko Shade... And another part of me just shakes it's head and says"You know full well that he's going to be long-dead when the Shade hits the table, and he'll be up in hand, along with everything else, when the 'Tog swings for twenty."
I guess I can still hope.
1: The next time you would draw a card this turn, you gain 5 life instead.
"The faithful don't succumb to terror, nor are they ruled by passion. They adhere to order, for order is life." -Volume I, The Book of Faith
Entire articles can and will be written on the Words cycle, simply because of the insane interaction they have with Sylvan Library.
At the beginning of your draw step, you may draw two cards. If you do, choose two cards in your hand drawn this turn. For each of those cards, pay 4 life or put the card on top of your library.
Start your turn. Pay two mana. Replace both Sylvan Library draws. Gain 10 life. Then draw your normal card for the turn.
It's crazy, nearly as good as the Abundance combo. While that powerhouse engine let you draw cards of the type of your choice, the Sylvan/Words Of Worship engine has you gaining massive life every turn - ten per turn, per Sylvan. Add to that the fact that you can turn your normal cantrips into lifegain cards, and you've got some serious potential.
What about an empty hand and a Merfolk Looter? If you have no cards in hand, you can simply Loot, skip the draw, gain five life, and then discard nothing since you have nothing in hand. Careful Study would work the same way. Breakthrough for one, gain twenty life?
These cards are insane. The funniest combo - though one you'll probably never see, is with Yawgmoth's Bargain. Basically, these two enchantments just let you draw your entire deck. Seriously though, just think about the possible applications of this beating stick of a card, even in something as simple as Standard.
Cephalid Broker + empty hand + two mana = 10 life/turn
With Seeker Of Skybreak, it's 20 life/turn for 4 mana.
Cephalid Coliseum + empty hand = 15 life.
Empty hand Careful Study? 10 life.
How about a Skeletal Scrying for 6, add in six extra mana, and turn it into a 30-point Stream Of Life?
I'm not even going to go on. Are you seeing the coolness? Just make sure to test Words Of Worship and company (with the exception for the Blue one, which is a piece of junk - a design decision that was probably a good idea). If you go out and break the Seeker Of Skybreak, Cephalid Broker, Words Of Worship engine, make sure to give me some props ^_^.
Whew, that's it. Took a while, didn't it? But we did make it.
Come on, wasn't that fun?