What cards get worse with Lodestone Gone


  • Administrators

    Lightning Bolt was printed in Alpha, but never found a home in vintage before Lodestone Golem was printed. People have run Doom Blades and Snuff Outs just for handling it. Pre-Lodestone, most anti-shops plans revolved around more expensive cards that handled multiple artifacts (Hurkyl's > Sabotage, Rack and Ruin > Nature's Claim). The very idea of "not splashing black" was very rare before Golem was printed.

    None of these anti-Lodestone cards are terrible now, but I suspect some of them would never have seen play in a world without turn one 5/3's.

    What cards do you expect to not make the cut anymore?
    What cards showed up because of Lodestone, but will still have a role?



  • R&D has pushed creature power so much (say in the last 5 years) that Vintage decks have had to change their approach to creature removal. Lightning Bolt was simply not worth a card for many years.

    However, there are many creatures now that are so powerful that most decks have to have answers for them. I think the 3 damage is not the important part to focus on, but the cost of R. If you're in red and don't have access to better removal, then you will probably keep using Bolt.


  • Administrators

    There are a lot of creatures in vintage that bolt can kill, but there are also a lot of cards in vintage that answer more than one creature at the same time (or answer a creature while doing something else, like drawing a card or leaving a large threat behind). Lodestone forces you to have a cheap answer right now in a way that Delver or Revoker don't.

    I don't have an answer here, but I feel like the importance of the card costing 1 just dropped a lot, maybe even a drawback in a world of Missteps.



  • I wish we had had more time without Chalice for the format to adjust before another change. It's such bad policy to make decisions like that.

    Anyway, without getting into that kind of debate, I think that Chalice being restricted increases the value of a bunch of 1cc cards.



  • i think snuff out was a anti lodestone card that doesn´t see play anymore, but cheap removal is big in a world with mentor, delver, promancer, confi...
    but i think mass removal like pyroclasm and toxic deluge will see more play.



  • It would be interesting if WoC only updated the Vintage B/R once a year since the format does take a longer time to change.
    I can definitely see Sudden Shock getting more popular now that decks don't need to worry about Lodestone as much and Mentor decks are going to end up taking over.



  • Hey it's worth pointing out that we will still have to kill Lodestone Golem at least part of the time. It wasn't banned!



  • @Eightfarms said:

    I can definitely see Sudden Shock getting more popular now that decks don't need to worry about Lodestone as much and Mentor decks are going to end up taking over.

    I agree with this. Sudden Shock kills all the small creatures that Bolt would, but it avoids Counters.


  • Administrators

    @shawnthehero truth! I actually think this is one of the more interesting parts of the discussion. I don't think Shops is going to die at all, but I do think that maybe we don't want the same cards we used to. I love Ingot Chewer and Dack Fayden but I think their stock just dropped a bit. Nature's Claim feels a lot less important in the matchup now ... and Nature's Claim was more than 50% the reason why people like green against shops.


  • TMD Supporter

    @Brass-Man since bolt can double as a kill spell for JTMS or Duck Fade in I imagine it will still see some play. It isn't so hot against mentor though. It's passable, but if you're not careful it won't kill a mentor.


  • Administrators

    @Islandswamp agreed, but that only matters for a subset of the decks that run bolt now ... And if all you want to do is add some reach to an aggro deck, there are better ways than Bolt to do that too.

    I don't think Bolt's going away though



  • I have to agree bolt is really good even with three less Lodestone's coming your way.

    In addition to killing most creatures, burning walkers, don't underestimate the significance to 3 damage to the face.

    Between fetches, Forces, Missteps, Crypts, etc, I have won many games just by pointing the bolt at my opponent.


  • TMD Supporter

    I'm thinking that people will be going for value plays now, like Pulverize or Ancient Grudge, now that they have a little more breathing room. Maybe not a ton of breathing room, but significantly more now that the chance of a 1st turn Golem is minimal, and they can save countermagic/FoW for the next threat.



  • Perhaps this is too small to count or obvious but... Moxen get better. In the last two restrictions, Shops have gone from 13 spheres + 4 Chalice to 10 spheres + 1 Chalice. The odds of being able to cast and resolve a mox a Mox on the draw for its printed mana cost of 0 have increased substantially.



  • @thecravenone They also get much worse since you don't need Moxen to pay the Lodestone tax. I'd say the value of on-color moxes increases and the value of off-color moxes decreases.


  • Administrators

    @thecravenone I was actually expecting them to get worse. Lodestone doesn't affect artifacts, which meant Moxen were a key tool for digging out from under it. Moxes are obviously still awesome, but they're not something you have to mulligan to anymore. I expect shops decks to run more Mox-impacting hate cards now, not less, and I expect some decks to adopt the old anti shops plan of basics into bombs, with the extra time they have to set up.



  • Bolt is certainly the first card that comes to mind, a few others off the top of my head:

    Phyrexian Metamorph: best used to copy your own lodestone, though still has utility for copying generic spheres or against Oath...a deck that may or may not decline if aggro shops turns to more control shops.

    Phyrexian Legionnaire: Cool because you could play it even if you are not on white, though the presence of triskelion in shops decks may have kept people from leveraging it to its full advantage...it came down un-taxed through a thorn AND a lodestone, and effectively acted like a 2 mana/2 life moat until you could get back ahead on mana/answers.

    Pulverize: Am I really still setting myself back two lands if I am no longer consistently staring down 5 damage plus whatever else? This one is a toss up to me...if you are so far behind already that a well timed EOT hurkyls cant pull you ahead then you may have already lost.

    Magus of the Unseen - What are you stealing now?

    Some shop hate cards that may be "better" now:

    Kohlagns Command - its CMC was the one thing that really held this card back, and with 3 Sphere slots up in the air it may be way more playable now...also a solid card vs Storm if you get a turn and can hit their hand and their artifact mana

    Artifact mutation - its cost always held it back, and although Lodestone would be the tastiest target, EOT kill your sphere get 2 guys fits into the lateral strategy prevalent in the format today.

    Radkos Charm- Double utility as Artifact and Graveyard hate, same Casting Cost issues as the cards above. I have been told by my dredge friends that this card is crushing and they seldom see it coming.

    Rack and Ruin - This card used to be everywhere then suddenly 3 CMC became unrealistic...Would love to see this make a comeback



  • @p3temangus said:

    Bolt is certainly the first card that comes to mind, a few others off the top of my head:

    Phyrexian Metamorph: best used to copy your own lodestone, though still has utility for copying generic spheres or against Oath...a deck that may or may not decline if aggro shops turns to more control shops.

    Phyrexian Legionnaire: Cool because you could play it even if you are not on white, though the presence of triskelion in shops decks may have kept people from leveraging it to its full advantage...it came down un-taxed through a thorn AND a lodestone, and effectively acted like a 2 mana/2 life moat until you could get back ahead on mana/answers.

    Pulverize: Am I really still setting myself back two lands if I am no longer consistently staring down 5 damage plus whatever else? This one is a toss up to me...if you are so far behind already that a well timed EOT hurkyls cant pull you ahead then you may have already lost.

    Magus of the Unseen - What are you stealing now?

    Some shop hate cards that may be "better" now:

    Kohlagns Command - its CMC was the one thing that really held this card back, and with 3 Sphere slots up in the air it may be way more playable now...also a solid card vs Storm if you get a turn and can hit their hand and their artifact mana

    Artifact mutation - its cost always held it back, and although Lodestone would be the tastiest target, EOT kill your sphere get 2 guys fits into the lateral strategy prevalent in the format today.

    Radkos Charm- Double utility as Artifact and Graveyard hate, same Casting Cost issues as the cards above. I have been told by my dredge friends that this card is crushing and they seldom see it coming.

    Rack and Ruin - This card used to be everywhere then suddenly 3 CMC became unrealistic...Would love to see this make a comeback

    I agree pretty much with the top 4 cards, specially metamorph. Golem was often the chosen card to copy, now it's not possible anymore.

    Also slash panter gets worse. The 4 damage was specially relevant when you could add another 5 each turn.

    Moxen get a bit worse probably, but got MUCH better when chalice got restricted.

    batterskull gets worse. it it a great card to bring in front of a golem, not so good against some 5/5 or 6/6

    dismember is going to see less play. It was a 1 mana removal, specially useful in the mirror

    vault+key was a great wincon under lodestone. now if null rod increases, vault gets worse

    I expect to see more :

    serenity: previously serenity was great, but that extra turn could cost the match, not to mention that it costed a good amount of mana at sorcery speed. with a slower clock, it should be better

    null rod, which does some nice mana denial. Or maybe karn, but rod seems better.

    welder: there are lots of people wanting 5c stax to come back

    creature decks. I was playing merfolks + faeries when golem came out. I traded good results for utterly loses against golem

    thought knot seer could see play. While it can not be paid with mws mana, no golem means that it does not cost more. 4/4 replaces the body and the effect is awesome.



  • I don't know if we will, but I would like to see more enchantment other than oath, and possibly more enchantress decks in vintage due to lack of chalice and golem.



  • I don't see this format going back to greedy decks running one to three sweepers in the board and calling it a day. Efficient removal is still going to be widely valued. I do believe that Abrupt Decay is the real winner in this new format. Dismember has merit similar to Decay because it can bypass Misstep and force senarios where the opponent has to two for one - this is particularly relevant in the Gush creature mirrors.



  • @socialite said:

    I don't see this format going back to greedy decks running one to three sweepers in the board and calling it a day. Efficient removal is still going to be widely valued. I do believe that Abrupt Decay is the real winner in this new format. Dismember has merit similar to Decay because it can bypass Misstep and force senarios where the opponent has to two for one - this is particularly relevant in the Gush creature mirrors.

    While I agree that decay is better against MUD when there is no golem, BUG was already great against MUD (assuming drs, confidants) I don't think getting rid of lodestone is improving BUG position. Could work in more combo-control builds, maybe with vault+key, but again those decks should have good game against MUD.

    Decay faded because of pyromancer and mentor. While it answers the root of the problem, the tokens stay in play an they can be troublesome, specially with prowess. Engineered plague seems better positioned now. Maybe even virulent plague. Both answer to some extent mentor, oath, delver, dredge and even ETW. Plague also hits tribal decks nicely, and I can foresee an increment with golem gone. Ironically decay answers these cards so it can see play if people need to defend their own swarm.


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