I feel really bad about leaving everyone hanging and not getting the set reviews done before the paper release events. I feel like I've let everyone down and I want to applogize. I mean these set reviews are really important because every three months our game gets a complete over-haul with the the new cards, and as the local Examiner it's my job to share my ideas with everyone. Don't worry, I've got some plans in place to help me be able to bounce back into the swing of being able to travel and make more events in the near future. Also I have some ideas about how I can do more for the Magic community.
With that said, I'm still running behind on these reviews. I promise I plan to have the last two articles done before I have to go make coffee at work tonight. Yeah, getting a job has really put me off my stride lately. Not am I covering the shifts during all the prime Magic events I'm also going to be giving up a lot of my time to grind the MTGO release events for Gatecrash.
Let's get this going with the Red cards.
Act of Treason – 2R – Sorcery – gain control of target creature until end of turn. Untap that creature. It gains haste until end of turn. Limited staple red card over here. There's a reason that Act of Treason or some other similar effect has been printed in the last three years of Limited formats.
Bomber Corps – 1R – Creature – Human Soldier – Battalion – Whenever Bomber Corps and at least two other creatures attack, Bomber Corps deals 1 damage to target creature or player. ½ So I have to attack with three dudes only to get to ping something. Will see play in Limited and in Red Deck Wins beside Hellraiser Goblin and Hellrider.
Cinder Elemental – 3R – Creature – Elemental – XR,tap, sacrifice Cinder Elemental: Cinder Elemental deals X damage to target creature or play. 2/2 Loving this for Limited. Run it out on turn four just combat tricks and pumps on it until you get enough mana to use it to kill. Still, the constructed formats have too much removal to make this good.
Crackling Perimeter – 1R – Enchantment – Tap an untapped Gate your control: Crackling Perimeter deals 1 damage to each opponent. Wow, just wow. Look at the pile of jank over here. So I play comes into play tapped lands that I can tap to short myself on mana. Yes, I understand that it says each opponent but how many of you ever play non-Commander multiplayer games?
Ember Beast – 2R – Ember Beast can't attack or block alone. ¾. They have to reward you for playing Battalion in Limited with some cheap creatures that can survive a few attack phases.
Firefist Striker – 1R – Creature – Human Soldier – Battalion – Whenever Firefist Striker and at least two other creatures attack, target creature can't block this turn. 2/1 Already ordered my playset of this for Red Deck Wins so this is great in Standard. After Innistrad I learned the power of being able to keep back blockers in Limited.
Five-Alarm Fire – 1RR – Enchantment – Whenever a creature you control deals combat damage, put a blaze counter on Five-Alarm Fire. Remove five blaze counters from Five-Alarm Fire: Five-Alarm Fire deals 5 damage to target creature or player. Might just get this as well for Red Deck Wins because you're going to be attacking with dudes and it does trigger off any combat damage. Unlike Shrine of Burning Rage this doesn't ask you to spend mana to use it, but it does have a limit of needing five counters to use it. I think that it's going to be great in Limited as well.
Foundry Street Denizen – R – Creature – Goblin Warrior Whenever another red creature enters the battlefield under your control, Foundry Street Denizen gets +1/+0 until end of turn. 1/1. Woot, Goblins! I can totally see this becoming part of RDW or a reborn Goblin deck. Also if I build a goblin deck for Commander this is going to be one of the one-drops. As for the effect of this in Limited it will be a bomb in red creature heavy card pools. This guy is all upsides.
Furious Resistance – R – Instant – Target creature gets +3/+0 and gains first strike until end of turn. Nice combat trick for Limited. This turns just about any chump or trade into a good block for you.
Hellkite Tyrant 4RR – Creature – Dragon – Flying, trample. Whenever Hellkite Tyrant deals combat damage to a player, gain control of all artifacts that player controls. At the beginning of your upkeep, if you control twenty or more artifacts, you win the game. 6/5 Well, it looks like we found the mythic dragon that has no effect on any format other than as some kind of answer to that new player built artifact deck. Still, because new players tend to build that deck all the time this is going to be just a $2 mythic that would have been a bulk rare.
Hellraiser Goblin – 2R – Creature – Goblin Berserker – Creatures you control have haste and attack each combat if able. 2/2 Yuppers, this is going to see some play once Red Decks Wins turns into a pure goblin aggro deck. I spawn goblins turns one and two, drop this turn three, and then follow it up with Krenko, Mob Boss and you can just bash face.
Homing Lightning – 2RR – Instant – Homing Lightning deals 4 damage to target creature and each other creature with the same name as that creature. Hmm, If token decks end up being all the rage I could see this being the new thing in Red Deck Wins. But seeing as most decks are looking to have a wide range of threats because of the other removal spells that can sweep a board of the same kind of tokens.
Legion Loyalist – R – Creature – Goblin Soldier – Haste. Battalion – Whenever Liegion Loyalist and at least two other creatures attack, creatures you control gain first strike and trample until end of turn and can't be blocked by creature tokens this turn.1/1 Not only does this fill the role of the one-drop in the goblin deck, but this is also an awesome aggro rare for Limited. I'm loving it and I would like to have four.
Madcap Skills – 1R – Enchantment – Aura – Enchant creature. Enchanted creature gets +3/+0 and can't be blocked expect by two or more creatures. That is so sweet in Limited. Just beat face with aggro all the way to the win when you have all the removal and a good one drop to us on this. I like this so much I might just find room for it in my cube.
Mark for Death – 3R -Sorcery – target creature an opponent controls block this turn if able. Untap that creature. Other creatures that player controls can't block this turn. That is epic! That's just the finisher that red decks love. I expect to hear a number of “bad beats” stories that start with this card inbetween rounds of limited.
Massive Raid – 1RR – Instant – Massive Raid deals damage to target creature or player equal to the number of creatures you control. Well this is going to see play in Limited, but as Long as we have Hellrider in Standard this is going to be out classed.
Molten Primordial – 5RR – Creature – Avatar – Haste. When Molten Primordial enters the battlefield, for each opponent, gain control of up to one target creature that player control until end of turn. Untap those creatures. They gain haste until end of turn. 6/4 Yup, I really want to make a five color Archenemy deck just so I can use all five Primordial creatures this with Introductions are in Order.
Mugging – R – Sorcery – Mugging deals 2 damage to target creature. That creature can't block this turn. Nice limited removal that might just be good enough for Standard. Sure the two damage isn't going to kill bigger threats but that “can't block” rider makes this still have reach in the late game.
Ripscale Predator – 4RR – Creature – Lizard – Ripscale Predator can't be blocked except by tow or more creatures. 6/5. I like how this ability is starting to show up more and more on red creatures. In Limited the ability turns normally jank creatures into powerful attackers that refresh the combat step.
Scorchwalker – 3R – Creature – Elemental – Bloodrush – 1RR, Discard Scorchwalker: Target attacking creature gets +5/+1 until end of turn. 5/1 Really, we had to get this deep into red till we found the sweet mechanic of the Gruul. Bloodrush is my favorite mechanic for Limited. You attack with two dudes and just use the bloodrush card on the one that isn't blocked.
Skinbrand Goblin – 1R – Creature – Goblin Warrior – Bloodrush – R, Discard Skinbrand Goblin: Target attacking creature gets +2/+1 until end of turn. 2/1 See Scorchwalker.
Skullcrack – 1R – Instant – Players can't gain life this turn. Damage can't be prevented this turn. Skullcrack deals 3 damage to target player. Yup, that's the burn spell that is now the staple of aggro decks in Standard. I've already ordered my playset.
Structural Collapse – 5R – Sorcery – Target palyer sacrifices an artifact and a land. Structural Collapse deals 2 damage to that player. Woot, over priced land destruction that is never going to be played in any deck ever.
Tin Street Market – 4R Enchantment – Aura – Enchant land. Enchanted land has “Tap, discard a card: Draw a card.” So it's a more splashable Underworld Connections that cost more but doesn't cost the life. I think this is going to be a great card in Limited to filter out land flooded hands.
Towering Thunderfist – 4R – Creature – Giant Soldier – W: Towering Thunderfist gains vigilance until end of turn. 4/4 Well that's a limited dork that rewards you for playing Boros, and that is just it.
Viashino Shanktail – 3R – Creature – Viashino Warrior – First strike. Bloodrush – 2R, Discard Viashino Shanktail: Target attacking creature gets +3/+1 and gains first strike until end of turn. 3/1 I like how this is geared to teaching when you should use Bloodrush. Let's face it, this is a combat trick ability. Loving this for Limited.
Warmind Infantry – 2R – Creature – Elemental Soldier – Battalion – Whenever Warmind Infantry and at least two other creatures attack, Warmind Infantry gets +2/+0 until end of turn. 2/3 Yeah, still not a fan of the Battalion cards that don't give their bonus to all members of the team. Still it becomes a goo beater in Limited.
Wrecking Ogre – 4R – Creature – Orge Warrior – Double strike. Bloodrush – 3RR, Discard Wrecking Ogre: Target attacking creature gets +3/+3 and gains double strike until end of turn. 3/3. That's the Bloodrusher I want to play in Limited. Oh, you didn't block, BAM! +3/+3 and double strike. That's eight or more you are going to take and if that was on a fatty then I just won the game. Good thing this is a rare, because it is a bomb in limited.
Well red looks really strong in this set. I have a lot of hopes for Red Deck Wins and goblin tribal in the next year. Once Standard rotates away from Innistrad in October we might just see goblins return as the budget brew for Standard once again. Alright, let's get the my favorite guild for Limited.
Borborygmos Enraged – 4RRGG – Legendary Creature – Cyclops – Trample. Whenever Borborygmos Enraged deals combat damage to a player, reveal the top tree cards of your library. Put all land cards revealed this way into you hand and the rest into your graveyard. Discard a land card: Borborygmos Enraged deals 3 damage to target creature or player. 7/6 I really want to build a Commander deck that is just this guy and 99 lands. Just drop this on turn eight then discard my hand to deal 21 points of general damage to kill the big threat.
Clan Defiance – XRG – Sorcery – Choose one or more – Clan Defiance deals X damage to target creature with flying; Cland Defiance deals X damage to target creature without flying; and/or Clan Defiance deals X damage to target player. That's a cool fireball card. I'll hit you, your flier, and you best ground trooper. I've always been a fan of this kind of removal + finisher in Limited which is why I tend to go for red when I can.
Domri Rade - 1RG – Planeswalker – Domri -+1: Look at the top card of your library. If it's a creature card, you may reveal it and put it into your hand. -2: Target creature you control fights another target creature. -7: You get an emblem with “Creatures you control have double strike, trample, hexproof, and haste.” Starting Loyalty 3. I have yet to see a three drop planeswalker that didn't have some kind of effect on Standard. Well, it's true that Domri does have a huge bull's-eye on his back he is also very powerful if you can make it work. You'll just need some tough blockers to defend him so you can build up to the ultimate. In Limited this is going to be the bomb that counts down to the win on turn seven.
Frenzied Tilling – 3RG – Sorcery – Destroy target land. Search your library for a basic land card and put that card onto the battlefield tapped. Then shuffle your library. The fact that this is both a land destruction and a ramp spell means it might just be the go to spell in Limited.
Ghor-Clan Rampager – 2RG – Creature – Beast – Trample. Bloodrush – RG, Discard Ghor-clan Rampager: Target attacking creature gets +4/+4 and gains trample until end of turn. I'll take all of these in Limited. Just two mana and it get to eat you block and damage you, awesome.
Ground Assault – RG – Sorcery – Ground Assault deals damage to target creature equal to the number of lands you control. Limited removal that works great in Limited. As long as you have been hitting land drops each turn, or even ramping into them, this should be able to deal with any threat your opponent drops.
Gruul Charm – RG – Instant – Choose one – Creatures without flying can't block this turn; or gain control of all permanents you own; or Gruul Charm deals 3 damage to each creature with flying. That's the charm that makes Gruul awesome in Limited. It's so useful for them to deal with blockers or take back the mind controlled troops.
Gruul Ragebeast – 5RG – Creature – Beast – Whenever Gruul Ragebeast or another creature enters the battlefield under you control, that creature fights target creature an opponent controls. 6/6 It's a Trap!Sure, when you drop this it's going to kill a creature. But what happens when the rest of you dudes are too small to survive being cast because you opponent has this under lock down from attacking. This isn't a “may” ability and that means you aren't going to get away with casting chump blockers ro mana dorks after this hits the table.
Primal Visitation – 3RG – Enchantment – Aura – Enchant creature. Enchanted creature gets +3/+3 and has haste. Well that's an over priced enchantment that is never going to see any... wait a second. Nope, going to stand by this one as it being a jank pump effect for Limited. I mean all I could thing of doing would be some kind of Open the Vaults/Replenish combo deck that self milled till it could reanimate Lucent Liminid with enough pump enchantments for lethal.
Rubblehulk – 4RG – Creature – Elemental – Rubblehulk's power and toughness are each equal to the number of lands you control Bloodrush – 1RG, discard Rubblehulk: Target attacking creature gets +X/+X until end of turn, where X is the number of lands you control. */* Yup, another great Bloodrush card for Limited.
Ruination Wurm – 4RG – Creature – Wurm 7/6 And the Limited beater is just a beater in Limited, enjoy.
Signal the Clans – RG – Instant – Search your library for three creatures cards and reveal them. If you reveal three cards with different names, choose one of them at random and put that card into your hand. Shuffle the rest into your library. This is totally a straight to Cube/Commander card. This is only good in fromats whhere you are running three different dudes that can all pull off the same job. In the other formats this is just too random to work in any other format. Well, maybe Limited when you need a beater to finish off the game.
Skarrg Guildmage – RG – Creature – Human Shaman – RG: Creatures you control gain trample until end of turn. 1RG: Target land you control becomes a 4/4 Elemental creature until end of turn. It's still a land. 2/2. Is that a guildmage that I really like for Limited. Yeah, that's really good. Gives trmaple to you dumb beaters in the late game, and turns lands into beaters on turn four. I'm loving this.
Zhur-Taa Swine – 3RG – Creature – Boar – Bloodrush – 1RG, discard Zhur-Taa Swine: target attacking creature gets +5/+4 until end of turn. 5/4 Yup, that makes mana dorks into beater in Limited.
Burning-Tree Emissary – R/gR/g – Creature – Human Shaman – When Buring-Tree Emissary enters the battlefield, add RG to you mana pool. 2/2 Yup, infinite mana loop in Standard. Also more mana ramp in Limited as it allows you to cast it and another spell in the same turn.
Pit Fight – 1R/g – Instant – Target creature you control fights another target creature. (Each deals damage equal to its power to the other.) Another fight card that will be a staple of removal in Limited.
Rubblebelt Raiders – Creature – Human Warrior – Whenever Rubblebelt Raiders attacks, put a +1/+1 counter on it for each attacking creature you control. 3/3 Looks like red Deck Wins just found another four-drop for the deck. Well this isn't as to the face as Hellrider it still gives the block or die option that I feel RDW needs with all its threats.
All in all, I think Gruul is my default guild for Limited during the MTGO release weekend. Seeing how the Dragon's Maze release is going to allow players to pick two guilds, and if that set continues the guild mechanics, I'm totally going to be drafting Jund. As it stands Jund has a lot of great cards and might start being a powerful once again in Standard. Well If I want to finish these reviews before my shift at the cafe I better to to writing the last two. This has been...
Jeffrey Carmichael II
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