SCG Daily - The O.C.(D.)
The last time I did the Daily series, I only did four. This time, you'll be pleased (or displeased, if you're Ridiculous Hat or one of my many detractors) to see that I'm actually finishing the job!
I was a little mean at some points earlier this week, but today's article is going to be all sunshine and cuddles. I'm not really a vicious, angry person, and the few people who saw me drunk can attest to this*. You really have to take what I say with a grain of salt, which of course means it's what I really think, but I don't want to suffer the consequences of saying it. Thus, if I insulted you in some way - this week or ever - then I was kidding**. Ha ha!
Magic Online avatars are stupid. It's cute to change your appearance and all, but the tars' functionality for Vanguard is all but irrelevant. One day, though, someone decided to create an avatar that was so much fun that it spawned an entire format. Everyone from drooling retards all the way up to William “Baby Huey” Jensen and Rich Hoaen quickly fell in love with Momir Basic.
For those who have never played Momir Basic, the Momir Vig avatar lets you pay X mana and discard a card as a sorcery (once per turn) to put a random creature (token) with casting cost X into play. You could get literally anything that exists on Magic Online. For Momir Basic, as the name suggests, you aren't allowed to play any crazy mana ramping or spells; you have to play all basic lands and let the Momir tokens duke it out.
Today, I'll be exploring the best and worst outcomes for your activation at each casting cost. (This was originally going to be a full-length article with top five lists for each casting cost, but I think this is a more fitting time/place/format for this endeavor.)
I'll only be doing this for costs 2-8, since 1-drops are for chumps, and more than 8 mana is hard to come by. I actually managed to cast a Cha-Tuckly Wurm and a Draco in the finals of the one Momir Premier I played, but that's only because I mised a Sakiko.
Best: Azorius Guildmage
This is one of many reasons to play an even mix of basics as opposed to some bizarre strategy. If you get this on the play, your opponent will have to hope his 2-drop is enough to win the game by itself. On the draw, your opponent has slightly better chances, as he gets to content himself with a 2-drop and a 3-drop as his only creatures for the rest of the game. You basically set yourself back three turns to make sure your opponent can never do anything again. A turn 2 kill.
Worst: Tempting Wurm
There are a couple of bad things that can happen at two mana. You could get a classic do-nothing like Cavern Harpy, for instance, or a Cephalid Vandal that threatens to eat your library before the game can end. Personally, I don't think it gets any worse than letting your opponent accelerate directly to 8 mana. Maybe that's just me.
Best: Dogged Hunter
Not only is this a 3-mana Visara, it's a 3-mana Visara in a format with no spells. Your opponent will have to get something like Flametongue Kavu or Nekrataal to kill this.
Worst: Wormfang Turtle
Setting yourself back a turn is incredibly painful, but it pales in comparison to some of the horrible things that can happen at other casting costs.
Best: Desecration Elemental
Thanks to its drawback being completely eliminated, this is a superior creature in size and evasion to most 8-drops... and it comes out up to four turns sooner. Hayner actually alerted me to this one many weeks ago, and I was so shocked and awed that I became inspired to do the research that became the rest of this article.
Worst: Rust Elemental
Oh, sweet! Not only do you get a 4-drop that can't attack or block...you get one that would kill you on its own faster than your opponent could probably do it unassisted! Try not to get this one***.
Here seems like a good place for a senseless grammar rant. Notice how I just used the phrase “try to.” I must say that it pains me to no end when I see people say “try and.” I guess it became acceptable through common usage, but it sounds horrible to me, and a few examples will show that it's just wrong.
“I'll try not to let you down.”
“I'll try not and let you down.”
“He should have tried to find the key.”
“He should have tried and found? the key.” I don't even know how that would be phrased.
If you say “try and find,” you make it sound like “trying” and “finding” are two separate acts. They aren't. The stupid “idiom” only “works” in the present tense, while the right way works in the negative and in various tenses. F*** idioms and f*** you.
Best: Kiki-Jiki, Mirror Breaker
You can copy your best creature every turn...waaaaoowww! Your opponent's in a bit of trouble if you managed to get a creature with a comes-into-play ability.
There are essentially three instant-loss pulls at five mana. Desolation Angel prevents you from ever playing anything relevant for the rest of the game, and Sky Swallower does the same while giving your opponent a handful of creatures and enough lands to play a Darksteel Colossus in a turn or two. While those are quite spectacular ways to lose, in each case, there's the tiniest outside chance that you can still win. If you get Leveler, the game is simply over on your next turn (barring Anurid Scavenger).
Best: Visara the Dreadful
With the Pit Fighters and the Invasion and Champions dragons, you have a lot of potential for a strong sixth turn. There are only narrow degrees of separation between the best of these.
Worst: Worldgorger Dragon
Something tells me your opponent won't be killing this, and even if he does, your creatures won't come back. Also impressive at this casting cost are Yawgmoth Demon and Force of Nature.
Best: Angel of Despair
Nekrataal, Vedalken Dismisser, and the like all kill a creature of your choice, but the bodies they leave in their wake aren't quite as impressive as that of a 5/5 flier. Simic Sky Swallower is a little bigger, but the untargetability is fairly irrelevant in this format, especially when compared to a tacked-on Vindicate. Platinum Angel is nice, but if you're hiding behind it as a last resort, the opponent will eventually find a way to kill it. The closest 7-drop to this in quality is probably the Iridescent Angel.
Worst: Phage, the Untouchable
Best: Hoverguard Sweepers
Akroma is awesome and all, but she pales in comparison to an almost-as-large flier that also kills your opponent's TWO best creatures.
At eight mana, the absolute worst thing that can happen is that you hit a blank. The other low-end models include Scornful Egotist and the Myojins of Cleansing Fire and Night's Reach.
Oh, sweet... I'm done for the week! I hope you had as much fun reading these as I did writing them - none whatsoever. Kidding, kidding.
Because I adore lists so much, I will leave y'all with my top 5 songs from my top 3 bands****. This is mostly masturbatory (because I can), but I strongly recommend the AFI and Hole lists for your personal downloading purposes.
2. No Poetic Device
3. Malleus Maleficarum
4. This Celluloid Dream
5. This Time Imperfect
1. Jennifer's Body
2. Best Sunday Dress
3. Reasons to be Beautiful
5. Old Age
1. Cute Boring Love
2. Across Waters Again
3. Time Will Change Your Heart
4. The Endings
Timothy James Aten
*I was preaching peace and love amid tears. No lies.
**Unless you're Ridiculous Hat. Or anyone who's smaller and more timid than I. But I especially dislike Ridiculous Hat.
***Whenever I see a bad card on the other side of the table, I like to relax, prepare for an easy matchup, and usually ridicule my opponent to Ravitz. This instinct is much less applicable to Momir Vig, but it's still there. It's not possible to choose which creatures you get beyond selecting how much mana to dump in, but while playing Momir Basic, I still find myself thinking, “Steel-Leaf Paladin? Why would you choose that card? Are you stupid?” Man, I'm dumb.
****Subject to frequent changes.