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By otakuman5000 On 21 Jun, 2012 At 01:45 AM | Categorized As Previews, Reviews, TableTop Gaming | With 0 Comments

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 Welcome once again you mystical, magical, maniacs to another article from Cards n’Flux where we talk fun, awesome strategy for the game of Magic the Gathering.  With Planechase 2012 just hitting the shelves, we already have a number of fun spoilers for this year’s Core Set, Magic 2013.  We have confirmed not only the return of Vampire Nocturnus, Captain of the Watch, and Clone, but we also have the reprinting of Nicol Bolas, Planeswalker arguably the most powerful ever printed that was not utterly broken.  Along with Magic 2013, Wizards is also shipping their newest version of Duels of the Planeswalkers which will use 2013 cards.  In fact, when people download Duels of the Planeswalkers 2013, players will have the opportunity to go to a nearby store and get a free promo card.  The promo cards are Serra Avatar for Steam/iPad, Primordial Hydra for Xbox 360, and Vampire Nocturnus for PS3.  Looking at these promo cards, it almost seems unfair.  Serra Avatar has potential to see real play in Commander decks as it’s power and toughness are equal to your life total, Vampire Nocturnus (at time of writing) is worth $20, while Primordial Hydra… is a dinky $4 and has never seen constructed play.  Well, why don’t we take this article to make this often overlooked card into a prime power house?

 

 

First up, why exactly is Primordial Hydra so often put down and ignored as a possible big Green All-Star?  The simple answer is that it takes far too long for it to get going.  If you play the Hydra on turn three it will be a 1/1.  Next turn it becomes a 2/2, next turn 4/4, next turn 8/8, next turn 16/16.  So after five turns of waiting, Primordial Hydra finally becomes a big enough threat for it’s final ability to give it trample.  The worst is, during that time Primordial Hydra is just a big target.  With no protection like hexproof or shroud, we are one Doom Blade, Unsummon, or Oblivion Ring from losing all the mana we put into it.  If we could just find a way to protect our Hydra to the later turns, then maybe it might become of Green’s biggest hitters.

 

 

One great way to protect any creature these days is through the ability hexproof, which prevents our opponents from targeting our creatures with their annoying spot removal.  Currently, Green has two cards that we could use to give our big Hydra the instant protection it needs to stay on the field.  First up is Ranger’s Guile a one mana instant that not only boosts our hydra by +1/+1, but also gives it hexproof.  This is definitely our ideal card for protecting our Hydra, but we need more.  Thankfully there is more.  Sheltering Word out of Avacyn Restored is another instant speed hexproof card we can use to protect our Hydra with the added bonus of giving us a life boost.  Imagine this card when our opponent targets our 16/16 Hydra.  We could dash all our opponent’s hopes with one card.  However, two cards even at full play set are just not good enough.  This is why we need to run at least three Swiftfoot boots.  On turn two we can play this pair of nice shoes, then around turn four we can play Hydra and equip so that we do not have to always have an answer in our hands to deal with what our opponent might throw at us.  On top of all this, if we include one or two Asceticism, we should have enough to protect our big guys from the slings and bolts of our opponents.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Alongside our Hydra, we will need some other big Green swingers and some support creatures because one card does not make a deck.  For support we have got to have our trusty Llanowar Elves or Birds of Paradise and we could easily use a full playset of Borderland Rangers.  These three should give us some nice mana acceleration.  Now we move to some big hitters.  Unfortunately we might not have this guy around for much longer, but Dungrove Elder is arguably one of Green’s best cards in a while.  With every forest we play, Dungrove Elder just keeps getting bigger and with hexproof the only way for our opponent to deal with him is a sweeper like Day of Judgment.  Good news is we are only a few Green cards in and we already have some great Green fatties to almost replace Dungrove.  First up we have Elderscale Wurm a wurm who loves sevens.  For Seven mana you get a 7/7 with trample that when he enters the battlefield if your life total is less than 7 it becomes 7 and from then on if you would take damage that would reduce your life total to less than 7, it does not.  Basically, it is Green’s version of Platnium Angel, as along as Elderscale is on the field you cannot die, meaning another great target for our Hexproof package.  Another fun creature to come out of 2013 is Thragtusk a 5/3 for five mana that is sure to see play.  Now, you’re probably thinking why will a 5/3 see play, it’ll die to the first decent burn spell it sees.  That’s true, but when a 5/3 gives you 5 life when it hits the field and when it dies gives you a 3/3 beast token, then it is pretty easy to see why it will see play.

 

We still need to fill out the deck a little more.  One card we definitely want in the deck to help out our Primordial Hydra is Increasing Savagery.  With four mana we can jump our little one headed hydra into the big swingers by adding five +1/+1 counters.  The power of this card is amazing as it can turn even our little Llanowar Elves into a 6/6, plus with flashback we drop another 10 counters onto something else.  Another card I personally like is a card that might very well see play after the Titans leave standard, Soul of the Harvest.  With the same stats as Primeval Titan, what Soul of the Harvest gives us is card draw whenever a nontoken creature enters the battlefield under our control.  Sure, we might not have as many creatures as we would like to abuse this power with, but a 6/6 Trampler can always find a way to help.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

From here we can add in or subtract whatever we want to make the deck fit our desire.  If you want to have a few support creatures in front helping to buy time for when we drop our hyrda then Elvish Visionary to draw cards and Deadly Recluse to kill or dissuade all attackers would be some great choices.  If you do not want to be limited to just one big bomb or want some real problem creatures then you will find nothing better than Strangleroot Geist and Vorapede.  Either way, here is a basic list of what could make Primordial Hydra quite a force to be remembered:

 

Growing Strength:

 

Creatures:

3x Llanowar Elves

3x Birds of Paradise

3x Borderland Ranger

3x Primordial Hydra

3x Dungrove Elder

4x Thragtusk

2x Soul of the Harvest

1x Elderscale Wurm

 

Spells:

4x Ranger’s Guile

4x Sheltering Word

3x Increasing Savagery

1x Asceticism

 

Land:

23x Forest

 

Artifacts:

3x Swiftfoot Boots

 

This deck list runs fewer playsets than I usually like to run, but it gives us what we need.  If we get a Primordial Hydra on the field we can certainly protect it pretty well.  Plus, if we do end up losing our Hydra, we will have a fair amount of good creatures to swing in with.  If you want a more aggressive form of this deck, my suggestion would be to drop the Elderscale Wurm, the Birds of Paradise, and one Thragtusk so you can run two Vorapedes and four Strangleroot Geists.  If you want a longer lasting deck, then card draw through Elvish Visionary and lock down with Deadly Recluse at the cost of some Swiftfoot Boots and the Birds would probably be best.  Play around with the concept of this deck, I’m sure you’ll have fun.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Thank you all my happy readers for tuning in once again to this article series.  I always have a blast writing it and occasionally receiving messages about my articles just fills me with all kinds of joy.  Just remember, that even if everyone around you says a card you like is complete trash, just know there is always a way to make a deck where the card works.  And as you work out the perfect deck for your favorite, forgotten card just keep this phrase in the back of your mind, “Etherium is Limited.  Innovation is not.”  This is Corlando signing out.

By otakuman5000 On 14 Jun, 2012 At 03:37 PM | Categorized As Reviews, TableTop Gaming, Toys and Merchandise | With 0 Comments

No GravatarNow normally, this is where I would cut my article, but you all have been very patient with me so I’m going to give you all yet another deck.  The very first card spoiled for the new Planechase II was a powerful creature by the name of Maelstrom Wanderer.  At eight mana, he is very expensive which is why many when they first saw him pushed him immediately into the realm of Commander.  However, I believe he could make one heck of a casual finisher with his double cascade and group haste ability.  Let’s see if we can abuse his power a bit?

 

Before we get anywhere with Maelstrom Wanderer we are going to need a proper mana base and lots of lands, so if we essentially build a ramp deck we should be fine.  Four Birds of Paradise to start out should be good, but one card we for sure want in this deck is Explore.  Explore is kind of like a mini-cascade.  Explore’s power to let us play another land helps us to accelerate nicely.  However, the big bonus is when we also draw a card of it.  Being able to not only advance our mana, but dig a little bit into our library is really good in this deck. With Explore and maybe a copy or three of Cultivate, we should be more than fine in the ramp department.

So, what about creatures and spells?  Well, continuing with the cascade theme, we will still want to call on Etherium-Horned Sorcerer.  In a ramp deck, Etherium-Horn Sorcerer will have ample opportunity to be bounced and cast again and again.  If we are sticking to Maelstrom Wanderer’s three colors, then one card we have to include is Bloodbraid Elf.  At four total mana, this girl is a quick beat down of three power with the ability to cascade into anything three or lower.  Think of what that means for us now.  Either she will hit a mana ramping creature, or she could hit Explore to draw us a card, or even a Cultivate to give us even more land.  Bloodbraid Elf might not be the killer card of the deck, but she will certainly help out.   Another fun card given to us by Planechase II is Shardless Agent.  For three mana we get a cascading bear that will most likely hit nothing but ramp spells.

 

With all the Ramp and set up, we now need something to do with all that mana.  Because Maelstrom Wanderer’s ability really works best with creatures, let us stick with creatures and see what fatties we can slip into the deck.  And for sake of… I don’t know maybe feel or fashion, why don’t we go with one fatty for each of our three colors?  Now before we do anything, I’m sure you are all shouting, “Titans!” but no.  I have nothing against the cards themselves, I would just like to extend a hand to other big creatures that maybe do not see as much play due to their heavy cost.  For example Flameblast Dragon is a 5/5 flyer for six mana that never saw play due to Titans.  It’s a real shame too because Flameblast has a pretty fun ability to fire down a creature or player whenever it attacks and with the amount of mana we hope to produce in this deck, he will certainly be hitting for pretty hard.  Another fun creature we could play in this deck is Sphinx of Uthuun.  At seven mana, our odds of actually hitting him off of Maelstrom Wanderer are kind of slim.  If the first card we flip after Wanderer is a six mana creature, we won’t be able to hit Sphinx.  At the same time, dropping a 5/6 flyer and being able to Fact or Fiction for free is just something you don’t want to pass up.  Finally, our Green finisher… well it’s not mono Green, Blitz Hellion.  At five mana, this guy can even be hit by Etherium-Horn Sorcerer which makes him a truly awesome card to include to the point where we might want to seriously include a second Hellion to increase our chances.  Imagine your opponent’s face when you cast Etherium-Horned Sorcerer.  They’ll say something like, “Oh gawh, another cascade… blah, blah, blah.” Suddenly, you flip a Blitz Hellion and attack for seven.  Their inattentive face will turn white in surprise, it will be so much fun.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Finally, with all these ideal draws and hopeful plays, it would definitely be best if we play some deck manipulation.  A full playset of Ponder is a must because we are able to look at three cards or even shuffle if we get nothing but land and a Bird of Paradise, nothing we really want to cascade into.  If we can, we could also try to put in some Sage Owls.  This 1/1 flyer doesn’t look like much, but being able to look at the top four cards of our library and replace them in any order is just beautiful in this deck.  Imagine playing this the turn before Wanderer, look at the top four cards and finding Forest, Blitz Hellion, Explore, Sphinx of Uthuun?  You can rearrange that into Forest, Uthuun, Blitz, and Explore and change what would have been disappointing into amazing.


With all this talk and way too many cards, this deck is going to be hard to build and hard to cut cards.  However, here is the preliminary decklist for Wandering Cascade:

 

Creatures:

2x Maelstrom Wanderer

1x Flameblast Dragon

1x Sphinx of Uthuun

3x Etherium-Horn Sorcerer

2x Blitz Hellion

4x Bloodbraid Elf

4x Shardless Agent

4x Birds of Paradise

4x Sage Owl

 

Spells:

4x Ponder

4x Explore

3x Cultivate

 

Land:

6x Forest

5x Mountains

6x Island

2x Hinterland Harbor

3x Rootbound Crag

2x Alchemist Refuge

 

This deck list is still in need of tweaking, but with the decent amount of ramp we should be rather fine on the whole matter of mana enough so that we could potential take opening hands that might not be ideal.  As for the inclusion of Alchemist Refuge, it just seems like the best include in this deck.  If we activate it on our opponent’s turn we can potentially play anything from a simple Sage Owl to set up for Wanderer, or we can drop a Bloodbraid for more hopeful mana, or (if we are just mana swamped) play an Etherium-Horn Sorcerer on our opponent’s turn just to bounce it on our turn and play it again.  As I said, this deck is still in need of tweaking, but I believe it is the foundation to a truly fun casual deck.

 

Well, that is a very long article.  Thank you readers for your continued interest in magic and I hope you will continue to read my articles for however long I write them.  Now if you excuse me, I have to find the equipment equivalent of a feather duster. Hope you all have a good summer and see you all next week.  Just remember, no matter what you’re doing, “Etherium is limited.  Innovation is not.”  This is Corlando signing out.

By otakuman5000 On 14 Jun, 2012 At 03:32 PM | Categorized As Reviews, TableTop Gaming, Toys and Merchandise | With 0 Comments

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            Sure is a lot of dust here… lots of cobwebs too… well, I’ll clean it later.  Hey there all you mages and monsters.  Been a long time has it not?  Well, much like how Avacyn has been restored on the plane of Innistrad, Cards n’Flux is back to talk cards, strategy, and give you some fun decks to employ against your enemies or good friends.  Without anymore delay, let us hop right in.

 

One of Wizard’s most recent products is a revamping of one of their previous attempts at a fun multiplayer experience.  Planechase II hopes to offer players the feeling of jumping from world to world, slinging spells and summoning creatures while simultaneously trying to adjust to each world’s unique ability or power.  The previous iteration of Planechase, in my opinion, fell a little short of this goal as it was often very easy for players to get stuck in one place where one player had an extreme advantage or where nothing really happened.  I remember one time where I was playing Planechase against a friend who was using a mill deck.  Eventually, we landed on a plane called Lethe Lake.  At the beginning of my upkeep I had to mill the top ten cards of my library.  Add in that whenever I rolled a chaos symbol on the Planechase die I lost another ten and my opponent’s already pretty strong mill deck and I never had a chance to fight.  I still do not know if Planechase II will be any better but with the new worlds and new phenomenon cards it has the potential to be interesting.  However, the thing that inspired me was actually some of the fun new cards we are getting thanks to the pre-constructed decks Wizards is selling.  Some of these decks contain some pretty awesome cards that alone make them worth buying the product.

First, before we get to the actual cards let us talk the planes cards.  For those who have not played Planechase, you basically play a normal game of Magic.  However, the difference is that at the start of the game you take the top card of your Planar deck and put it face up.  Each Planar card has two abilities, the active ability which is the top one, and the chaos ability that is triggered whenever a player rolls a chaos symbol on the Planechase die.  Players roll the Planechase die at the end of their turn.  The other important symbol on the Planechase die is the planeswalk symbol, which allows players to jump to a different plane with new abilities and where new craziness can be had.  In Planechase II, the new Phenomenon card was added into the mix and operates much like a sorcery or enchantment at Planar die speed.  The Phenomenon cards can have some major effects on the game such as combining two planes, destroying all creatures, to reversing the order of play.  The new Phenomenon cards have the potential to spice up and reinvigorate Planechase.  I do not believe it will ever be as popular as say Commander, but it has potential to see a little more play.

 

With Planechase II we are not only receiving new worlds to view and new ways to think of Planechase through phenomena, we are also gaining four new themed pre-constructed decks each holding brand new cards.  Chaos Reigns boasts five colors and is built to abuse the Cascade mechanic originally introduced in Alara.  Night of the Ninja is focused on the famous ninja cards from Kamigawa and has a number of fun cards with powerful enter the battlefield effects.  Primordial Hunger is all about Devour, feeding your tiny creatures to your big ones so you can devastate your opponents with overwhelming force.  Finally, Savage Auras deals heavily in auras and actually has the potential to make these often overlooked cards quite powerful.  I would recommend you check one of these four out and see what you think of Planechase.  These are fun decks to play with and in the end if you do not like Planechase, you still walk away with some pretty awesome cards.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Speaking of new cards, Chaos Reigns, the cascade deck, has a number of fun cards that are just waiting to be smashed together into a casual deck.  The problem we will face, is how do we abuse these cards?  For example, one of the best cards from Chaos Reigns is Etherium-Horn Sorcerer.  Now, a 3/6 for six total mana does not seem like the best investment of mana, especially at turn six or seven.  However, this shiny horned bull becomes a lot more impressive when you count his cascade ability and his bounce ability allowing you to cast him over and over.  If we combine this with both some good removal and some strong early drop creatures, we can make a deck that has both a fair amount of punch and some nasty surprises.

For starters, we are going to bring in a third color in addition to Etherium-Horn Sorcerer’s Red and Blue.  Dropping into Black, we can gain some strong spot removal, good creatures, and mass removal.  One creature we gain from Black is Kathari Remnant.  At four mana we are paying a lot for a 0/1, but we’re not using it to win, it’s a stalling method.  With both flying and being able to regenerate for one Black mana, we get a wall that can block anything without trample or protection that can stay around as long as we regenerate.  Add in his cascade and we have a pretty strong creature for our deck.  Other cards we will probably consider for the deck will be Deny Reality, five mana bouncing cascade, and Bituminous Blast, a five mana damaging spell.  If we have four remnants and three of the others we will have thirteen spells that can cascade into other spells, giving us occasional wonderful bonuses on our spells.

Now we need some good grunts, the creatures that will both buy us time and eventually kill our opponents.  One great creature we could call upon would be The Hound of Griselbrand, one of the new cards from Avacyn Restored.  Not only is this 2/2 with Double Strike good, but thanks to undying we will get it back stronger and it’s cheap mana cost means that if we cast one of our five or six mana cascade spells we have a chance of getting him out for free.  Another creature we should definitely consider is Krederekt Creeper, an often overlooked card from Alara block.  A 2/3 for three different mana does not seem all that great.  Yet, we will essentially have an unblockable creature giving us two damage every turn or a nice strong wall that can deathtouch anything it blocks.  Granted he is not very good against token strategies but he’s a fun card and one of my first favorites.  If we can get another creature I think we will have a strong foundation to win some games.  Vault Skirge might just be the creature we want in this deck.  Being a 1/1 flyer with lifelink, we could play Vault Skirge as either a one or two drop and use it in the opening turns to get in some damage.  The lifegain will also give our opponents more of a hill to climb as the game goes on.

With all the thinking done, what does our purposed deck look like all smashed together?  Here is Grixis Cascade:

 

Grixis Cascade:

 

Creatures:

3x Etherium-Horn Sorcerer

3x Hound of Griselbrand

4x Kathari Remnant

4x Krederekt Creeper

3x Vault Skirge

 

Spells:

3x Bituminous Blast

3x Deny Reality

4x Go for the Throat

3x Grixis Charm

2x Diabolic Tutor

3x Lightning Bolt

1x Cruel Ultimatum

 

Land:

5x Swamps

6x Mountain

5x Island

3x Drowned Catacomb

3x Dragonskull Summit

2x Evolving Wilds

 

Alrightly then, this deck is definitely top heavy.  With most of its important spells coming in around 4-6 mana, we might have to mulligan a few times to get a hand we can truly work with.  Our mana base is rather strong though and if you cannot find the dual lands you can always substitute a few Vivid lands which might actually work better for us in the end.  On top of all this, we still have no true win condition out of straight up aggression.  Cruel Ultimatum is a possible win card as it swings the battlefield so sharply, but it is no solid finisher.  Still, I believe this is a fun deck to start playing with and most of the cards can be easily obtained.  If you give this deck a shot sometime at your local Friday Night Magic, then let me know.  I would love to hear the results.

Please continue to Part 2 for another fun deck list…

 

By otakuman5000 On 24 Jan, 2012 At 06:10 PM | Categorized As Editorials, Portable/Mobile Gaming | With 0 Comments

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Cards n’Flux: Best Cards of 2011

By: Corlando

            Well everyone, 2011 has come and gone leaving us with 2012.  I am so excited for this year and the promise it brings.  New experiences, new friends, all just a few moments of time away.  However, before we rush off with the new 2012, let us remember the awesomeness of 2011 by looking at some of the best cards of the year.

 

Before we get started with the list, a few qualifications.  First, the cards have to be from 2011.  This means Scars of Mirrodin is out, but Besieged up to Innistrad are in.  Second, the cards cannot be reprints.  This just seems like a good rule.  Let the new cards have their day in the sun, instead of some repurposed older card.  Third, these are all my opinion.  If you do not like my selections feel free to voice them below instead of paying an assassin to try and kill me.  It won’t work.  I will also take this time to voice my opinion about a few other cards, which I am sure will also spark much debate.  With that said, let’s get going.

 

First up, the best Instant.  I chose this card because it gave the color a fun way of removal that can used to either destroy a big threat or help end the game.  Beast Within gives Green not only a removal spell, but also a token producer.  I love this card.  The versatility of either eliminating my opponent’s best guy or killing off one of my own 1/1s or an artifact you do not need to make a 3/3 in time to help bash face is just a fun.  I hope to include this in many more decks in the future.  Now the worst instant of 2011 is also a removal spell.  Dismember is a great removal spell.  Being able to fake out your opponent by only leaving one mana up and paying four life to kill their creature is useful and vindictive.  It has amazing flavor in a Black deck where you have to make sacrifices for ultimate power.  However, by being able to pay four life, now every deck gains the ability to destroy any unwanted creature.  Dismember take Magic’s color wheel and breaks it over a rusty spike.  Thanks to Dismember, great cards like Hero of Bladehold, Hero of Oxid Ridge, even Urabrask the Hidden were not played.  The standard format became, either protection from black or at least 6 toughness or it is not worth playing.  I like Dismember for its flavor, but I hate it for the effect it had on Standard.  As of recently this trend seems to have switched with decks like White Weenie, Token Town, and Wolf Run, Dismember is not as prevalent as it was.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Next we have the best Sorcery.  I chose this sorcery because I liked the flavor of it.  It is a card that sets a precedent, a personal hope to see more cards of this color combination in the future.  Unburial Rites is Rise from the Grave, but has a fun little four mana flashback ability that gives it a whole new kind of usefulness.  I am not going to lie; I love Black and White decks.  There is a certain joy I get out of the idea of having to make sacrifices to achieve power and strength in the community.  Unburial Rites has this kind of flavor of raising the dead to bolster and protect the community.  I love it and I hope and pray to see more White/Black cards in Dark Ascension and beyond.

Third we enter the category of enchantments, those fun, powerful spells that can really bring the damage in so many ways.  However, they also have the potential to be dead cards when someone drops a Naturalize or a Doom Blade on your enchanted creature.  Before the big reveal, I do want to give one honored mention to Curse of the Stalked Prey.  The additional +1/+1 counters can lead to an absolute beatdown and makes even your smallest threats something to worry about.  I really like this card and I can only hope for a standard deck to use this effectively.  Anyway, back to the winner.  Angelic Destiny is by far probably the best enchantment I have seen in a long time.  Not only does your creature get +4/+4, but it also gains flying and first strike and if the creature enchanted with Angelic Destiny dies, you may pop Angelic Destiny back to your hands removing the ultimate issue many players have with enchantments.  I just love this card.  Not only does it have great artwork by Jana Schirmer and Johannes Voss, but it has some great flavor to.  The wings in the mirrors is a very subtle part of the image.  Easily the best enchantment of 2011.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Now we come to a very hard category, best creature.  There are so many I wanted to put on this list: Grimgrin, Corpse-Born, Elesh Norn, Grand Cenobite, Chancellor of the Dross, Mirran or Phyrexian Crusader, even both heroes were on the list but I just did not feel they deserved the reward.  In the end I did come to a decision and I chose, Geist of Saint Traft.  After reading the “Savor the Flavor” column concerning Saint Traft and how he battled against the darkness of Innistrad throughout his whole life, I fell in love with the card.  With the backstory in mind, the Geist of Saint Traft becomes a beautiful card as the solemn look of Traft is off set by the presence of the angel.  It is a really great piece of art, which is fitting because it is such a great card.  A 2/2 for three mana with hexproof and whenever you attack with him, his angel friend comes out bringing the total of pain to six.  Add in an Honor of the Pure and it becomes eight.  I would love to see this card combo with Angelic Destiny, how cool would that be?  Geist of Saint Traft is in fact such a good card, the sheer power of this card took Craig Wescoe all the way to the top eight of worlds.  I really cannot wait for whatever comes our way in Dark Ascensions because I just know something is going to come out that will make this card even more of a bomb.

            The next topic is one that I don’t think I have ever done before, the best land.  Yeah this is kind of a new one, but we did get quite a few fun lands this year so it only seems right to pay some respect.  I was originally going to give the award to Contested War Zone for its flavor and the potential it had to help any deck get that last bit of damage in.  However, seeing as its flavor is what ultimately holds it back from being truly useful, it did not seem right to give Contested War Zone the reward.  I mean a land cannot exactly win the best land award if it does not stay yours if someone makes it through your defenses with a 1/1.  As such, the fight descended into a five way battle between the Innistrad power lands.  As such the winner of the best land award is Gavony Township for its great flavor and power to help Green and White decks really bring on the pain.  I really like this land and I know it will see more play with time.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Now we come to a rather interesting category, this year’s best Planeswalker.  This year we had quite a lot of entries, some better than others.  You can all probably guess the Planeswalker at the bottom of my list (hint: Garruk Relentless), however, none of you probably know which one will be my favorite.  This year we saw a Karn Planeswalker, which is very cool, however I am kind of disqualifying him because he lost his spark and so stopped being a Planeswalker for a bit meaning he effectively left the planeswalking club.  Sorry Karn.  I would have loved to give Venser, the Sojourner the spot, but unfortunately he came out last year.  Koth could have been a contender if he was not so narrowly focused on mountains.  Jace, Memory Adept just seemed too weak though I still think his future is bright once we get more flashback cards.  Garruk, Primal Hunter was definite contender, really showing off the power of Green, but his second ability, though awesome, kind of disrupts the pure Green energy.  So close, but missed the mark.  This leaves Lillana of the Veil and Chandra, the Firebrand to battle it out for the final spot.  If only we could have a cat-fight to find out…. Anyway, in the end I had to make a decision.  My favorite Planeswalker of 2012 is, Lillana of the Veil.  Chandra, the Firebrand is a close second with all her fiery glory, but Lillana of the Veil is pure Black magic.  First ability grants power through sacrifice by forcing both you and your opponents to discard.  The more you sacrifice, the more powerful she becomes as she prepares to tear apart half of your opponent’s field.  Her second ability is also rather useful if your opponent happens to just have one creature on the board.  I really like Lillana of the Veil and with Dark Ascension already being spoiled, I cannot wait to see how good she will be.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

With all the categories decided I believe it is time to close out the article.  Feel free to leave your own list below and describe your reasonings for each.  I eagerly welcome it.  I just ask that as you think up your lists as we wave goodbye to 2011, just remember, “Etherium is Limited.  Innovation is not.”  This is Corlando signing out.