Tag: shifting-loyalties

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Avatar Bruce Gray - January 30, 2015

Crack a pack MTG Fate Reforged with Bruce #20

Crack a pack MTG Fate Reforged

Crack a pack MTG Fate Reforged with Bruce 20

By Bruce Gray – Casual Encounters

Well, welcome back to our continuing Crack a pack MTG Series here at Casual Encounters and Three Kings Loot.  I’m very happy to say that this is crack a pack number 20 for me! I can’t believe that I’ve got to 20.  It seems like not all that long ago I was pitching the series to the guys at Three Kings Loot.  The goal for 2015 is to continue writing these and hopefully build up some more readers who are keen to get into a discussion about the cards and the selections.  So, let’s see what we’ve got on deck for today!

 

Today we’ll be opening a shiny new pack of Fate Reforged.  Remember, as Fate Reforged enters the draft environment we are now drafting one pack of Fate and 2 packs of Khans meaning you will still be pretty heavily Khans focused.  That said, Fate Reforged dove tails pretty well with Khans so it should move pretty seamlessly.  Here we go.

 

Rare

 

Uncommons

 

Commons

 

 

Oh boy…we just opened something pretty spicy in Crux of Fate. People have been calling for a re-print of Damnation for a long time and this may be as close as we ever get.  This is an awesome mass removal spell in Black, something that doesn’t come along in every set.  The fact that this is modal could be relevant in Draft if you have a couple of the uncommon dragons on board and need a way to punch them through, but you will mostly look at this as premium mass removal that you will grab first almost each and every time.

 

Valorous Stance is a tremendously versatile card and both modes are very relevant.  It is extremely efficiently costed at 2 manaand just does exactly what you need it to do every time.  In most packs this would be first pickable, but today it’ll like slide to the 2nd pick in this pack.

 

Neutralizing Blast is a very underwhelming counter spell.  The fact that it only targets multi-coloured spells is a huge issue because the number of such spells is quite low.  Think about it, there were some in Khans, but many of those were Morph creatures (that aren’t multi-coloured if cast face down) and a cycle of uncommon spells like Ride Down. In Fate, there is once again a cycle of common spells and the cycle of Rare Dragons.  That means that there aren’t a lot of relevant targets for this…so you’re likely just best to pass this and see if you grab it late as a sideboard option for the greedy 5 colour deck that the guy next to you is building.

 

Shifting Loyalties is a super powerful effect and could really turn the tide quickly as you trade you junky creature for their awesome one…but the variance on this is high.  If they only have a Gore Swine do you really want to spend 6 mana and trade you Jeskai Sage for it?  Likely not.  So you have a dead card in hand. If you have a Jeskai Sage and they have Atarka…well…that’s different.  I’d be careful with this one and wouldn’t prioritize it too highly because it could really backfire and just sit dead in your hand.

 

Sandteppe Outcast is a very useful 3 drop.  3 mana for a 2/1 creature and a 1/1 flier OR a 3/2 creature is nice versatility.  I imagine the 1/1 flier is the most likely mode you’ll pick, but I could make a case that you really want the 3/2 if you have the Abzan Falconer or Abzan Battle Priest on board.  Either way, this is very good and efficiently costed and could be a first pick if you were hard pressed.

 

Write Into Being is an interesting take on Manifest.  It is a sorcery that only costs 2 and a Blue for a total of 3 mana.  That is on par with Morphs…so that’s a perfectly acceptable casting cost for a 2/2.  However, the fact that you get to look at the top two cards and pick which one gets Manifested is actually excellent value.  You can essentially craft exactly which card you want turned over as a 2/2.  That gives you a lot of control and could allow you to play some very fun head games with your opponent.  Not a first pick, but a nice spell that likely goes in the early half of the round.

 

Fierce Invocation is another Manifest Sorcery.  I like this one less, but it is still a 4/4 for 5 mana which isn’t bad…and if it is a creature…you’re in business.  This is a mid-round pick up.

 

Douse in Gloom is Pharika’s Cure…just slightly more expensive.  This is another early pick in this pack because it deals with everything from facedown creatures to Alpine Grizzly without any difficulty.  This one isn’t flashy, but is the backbone of most limited decks.

 

Cunning Strike feels too expensive and just not good enough for 5 mana.  At 5 mana I want to do something AWESOME…this just feels slow and awkward.  Couple that with the fact that it is two colours and there is no doubt that this will table.  I’d pass and only take this as a last resort.

 

Arashin Cleric…and the consensus is…NO.  It doesn’t do enough.  It can’t block Morphs and Manifested decks profitably, the life gain is fairly modest, and it gets outclassed quite quickly.  No, don’t take this, you can do better.

 

Collateral Damage is a spell I really like.  In a tokens strategy, or heck, just with that dumpy Arashin Cleric, sacrifice the creature for 1 red mana (at instant speed) for a Lightning Bolt.  That seems fine to me.  Not a crazy high pick, but very reasonable once you establish your colours as a mid-round pick up for some inexpensive removal/damage.

 

Gore Swine is just a 4/1 vanilla creature. I’m not going to dump on this creature because it can be quite serviceable, but if I have better options I’m taking those long before I take this.  All that can be said for this thing is that at least it triggers Ferocious.

 

Bathe In Dragonfire is an excellent red removal spell.  The 4 damage is very useful and deals with most threats.  I’m not a fan of the Sorcery speed on this thing because it won’t catch Dash creatures, but you can’t expect too much from a common.  For the record, this continuing the trend of seeing removal slowly become more and more expensive…so while this is pretty reasonable it likely would have been cheaper had it appeared in a set 3-5 years ago.

 

 

Top 5 Cards

  1. Crux of Fate
  2. Valorous Stance
  3. Sandsteppe Outcast
  4. Bathe In Dragonfire
  5. Douse in Gloom

 

First pick

This is pretty much a no brainer…you grab Crux of Fate and move on.  There really isn’t anything that would match up well with Crux, and if suggested anything else I would out right lying to you. So, while the other cards are pretty good…Crux is the hands down winner.

 

Wow…that was easy.

 

Well, thanks for reading folks and thanks for coming along for the ride to get to 20 Crack a Pack MTG.  20 may not seem like a lot to you guys, but let me assure it has been quite the trip.  Let’s see if we can get to 30!  Thanks for reading and until next time may you open nothing but Mythic rares.

 

By Bruce Gray – Casual Encounters

@bgray8791  on Twitter

 

 

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Avatar Three Kings Loot - September 2, 2014

Fate Reforged spoiler – Release notes, Artwork & Card Galle...

Magic Fate Reforged- large pre-orderFate Reforged spoilerFate Reforged spoiler symbol

Release notes

  • Set 2 of 3 in the Khans of Tarkir block
  • Number of Cards: 185
  • Prerelease Events: January 17-18, 2015
  • Date: January 23, 2015
  • Game Day: February 13, 2015
  • Official Three-Letter Code: FRF
  • Twitter Hashtag: #MTGFRF

 

Fate Reforged spoiler

Colorless

Ugin, the Spirit Dragon

White

Abzan AdvantageAbzan RunemarkAbzan SkycaptainArashin ClericAven SkirmisherChannel HarmCitadel SiegeDaghatar the AdamantDragon Bell MonkDragonscale GeneralElite ScaleguardGreat-Horn KrushokHonor's RewardJeskai BarricadeLightformLotus-Eye MysticsMardu Woe-ReaperMonastery MentorMastery of the UnseenPressure PointRally the AncestorsSage's ReverieSandblastSandsteppe OutcastSoulfire Grand MasterSoul SummonsValorous StanceWandering ChampionWardscale Dragon

 

Blue

Aven SurveyorCloudformEnhanced AwarenessFascinationFrost WalkerJeskai InfiltratorJeskai RunemarkJeskai SageLotus Path DjinnMarang River ProwlerMindscour DragonMistfire AdeptMonastery SiegeNeutralizing BlastRakshasa's DisdainReality ShiftRefocusRenowned WeaponsmithRite of UndoingSage-Eye AvengersShu Yun, the Silent TempestShifting LoyaltiesSultai SkullkeeperSupplant FormTemporal TrespassTorrent ElementalWhisk AwayWill of the NagaWrite Into Being

 

Black

Alesha's VanguardAncestral VengeanceArchfiend of DepravityBattle BrawlerBrutal HordechiefCrux of FateDark DealDiplomacy of the WastesDouse in GloomFearsome AwakeningGrave StrengthGurmag AnglerHooded AssassinMardu ShadowspearMardu Strike LeaderMerciless ExecutionerNoxious DragonOrc SureshotPalace SiegeQarsi High PriestReach of ShadowsSibsig HostSibsig MuckdraggersSoulflayerSultai EmissarySultai RunemarkTasigur, the Golden FangTasigur's CrueltyTyphoid RatsGhastly Conscription

 

Red

Alesha, Who smiles at DeathArcboundBathe in DragonfireBloodfire EnforcersBreak Through the LineCollateral DamageDefiant OgreDragonrageFierce InvocationFlamerush RiderFlamewake PhoenixFriendly FireGoblin HeelcutterGore SwineHumble DefectorHungering YetiLightning ShriekerMardu RunemarkMardu ScoutMob RuleOutpost SiegePyrotechnicsRageformShaman of the Great HuntShockmaw DragonSmoldering EfreetTemur Battle RageVaultbreakerWild Slash

 

Green

Abzan Kin-GuardAinok GuideAmbush KrotiqArashin War BeastArchers of QarsiBattlefront KrushokCached DefensesDestructor DragonFeral KrushokFormless NurturingFrontier MastodonFrontier SiegeFruit of the First TreeHunt the WeakMap the WastesReturn to the EarthRuthless InstinctsSandsteppe MastodonShamanic RevelationSudden ReclamationTemur RunemarkTemur SabertoothTemur War ShamanWarden of the First TreeWhisperer of the WildsWhisperingwood ElementalWildcallWinds of Qal SismaYasova Dragonclaw

 

Artifact

Goblin Boom KegHero's BladeHewed Stone RetainersPilgrim of the FiresScroll of the MastersUgin's Construct

 

Multicolored

Atarka, World RenderCunning StrikeDromoka, the EternalEthereal AmbushGrim ContestHarsh SustenanceKolaghan, the Storm's FuryOjutai, Soul of WinterSilumgar, the Drifting DeathWar Flare

 

Lands

Crucible of the Spirit Dragon

Tokens

Manifest and Morph Token Monk Token 1  Spirit TokenWarrior Token

Pre-release promos ‘Time Shifted Cards’

Ugin's Fate booster - Fate Reforged spoiler

Ugin's Fate Display

Fate Reforged pre-release will introduce special promo ‘Time Shifted Cards’. During the event you get to pick your  Tarkir Clan and will also receive a special ‘Ugin’s Fate” booster pack which contains a Token, a Land card and certain amount of ‘Time Shifted Cards’ from a pool of 40 holo foil stamped cards with alternate art which demonstrates how the plane of Tarkir has changed. The PAX Australia panel showcased three of these cards.

  • Smite the Monstrous (exchanging a mastodon for a dragon),
  • Ghostfire Blade (showing that everyone was left-handed a 1000 years ago),
  • Briber’s Purse (showing a pay-off to a tyrannical dragon.

Briber's Purse - Ugin's Fate Ghostfire Blade Smite the MonstrousHordeling Outburst

 

Fate Reforged promos

Launch event January 23–25, 2015

Sandsteppe Mastodon

 

Game Day February 14–15, 2015

Mardu Shadowspear - Game Day

 

Game Day Top 8

Supplant Form - MTGFRF Game Day promo

 

Exclusive playmat for the Game Day Champion

Fate Reforged Game Day champion playmat

 

Buy-a-Box Promo

Shamanic Revelation Buy-a-Box Promo

Fate Reforged Artwork

Fate Reforged spoiler artworkCrux of Fate - Fate Reforged spoiler ArtUgin Fate Reforged spoiler artSoulfire Grand MasterWandering ChampionUgin's ConstructValorous StanceSupplant FormShockmaw DragonScroll of the MastersOutpost SiegeMardu ScoutJeskai InfiltratorFrontier SiegeDestructor DragonCrucible of the Spirit DragonCitadel SiegeArchfiend of DepravityManifest artworkAinok GuideMonastery MentorNoxious DragonPilgrim of the FiresPressure Point

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