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posted in Single-Card Discussion read more

Very interesting, but probably more cute than lethal. You can try to win on the spot by casting some absurd sorcery from your graveyard (e.g. Enter the Infinite) though there's the danger that you will whiff, or that your opponent can counter your haymaker. Or you can just play the usual strong Vintage spells (including Yawgmoth's Will) and plan to Scholar purely for value. The issue here though is that it's unclear why Scholar is better than Sun Titan for Underworld Breach.

posted in Single-Card Discussion read more

In particular,

  • any Oath deck is definitely running green, but may not be able to reliably generate white mana. Even in decks running Sun Titan and a fetchable Tundra in addition to the Orchards, the Tundra competes with other color priorities (red, green).
  • Beast Within can hit artifacts, enchantments, and lands. This gives you an out in circumstances that may otherwise be very awkward (surprise Leyline of Sanctity out of the opponent's sideboard, a Grafdigger's Cage or Sorcerer's Spyglass you need gone, Karakas when you are running a Legendary Oath package, an opponent's Oath in the mirror when you have lost Orchard superiority, etc).
  • Beast Within can get rid of your own Oath, in the occasional and very awkward situations that it has started doing more harm than good.
  • The beast is smaller and doesn't fly.
posted in Vintage Community read more

@serracollector said in Several cards banned in all formats for racist depiction, text, or combination thereof:

I'm very confused. Why is Jihad and Crusade wrong, but Wrath of God, Armeggedon, and Demonic Tutor are okay?

The best I can come up with is that the fact that they pump white creatures specifically put them in the crosshairs.

posted in Vintage Community read more

The text may be ambiguous but it's obvious that the intent is to also ban Invoke Prejudice, since it's by far the worst of the lot when it comes to insensitive depiction of racism. I’m frankly surprised anyone thought it was ever a good idea to send it to print.

What's the story behind Cleanse, Stone-Throwing Devils, and Crusade? These don't seem significantly worse than the usual MtG fantasy art. Or is it the names and not the art that are objectionable?

posted in Single-Card Discussion read more

You can win for RRR by stacking Snoop, Prospector, Kiki-Jiki, Fanatic. If you have more mana you can stack more Snoops and/or Prospectors to prevent your opponent from completely disrupting your combo by countering the first one. They can also stop you if they kill Snoop in response to casting Prospector or activating the Kiki-Jiki ability, but removal is probably less of a concern than counterspells.

The main issue IMO is that the opponent can simply focus on countering the Goblin Recruiters, leaving you with a shambolic aggro deck. You could try using countermeasures like Xantid Swarm but the deck is starting to look very fun but very casual.

Is there a way to play Snoop for the value of its Future Sight ability, in a deck built for aggro rather than combo, using it to keep deploying threats at a rapid clip even after you've exhausted your initial hand?

posted in Single-Card Discussion read more

The main issue of course is that a 4/4 is a nontrivial threat that you must be prepared to remove or race if you're going to run this card. Even in Oath where Swan Song is marginally playable, gifting the opponent a 4/4 is not something to do lightly.

Against wide creature-based strategies like Dredge, Survival, Shops, Hatebears, etc, Angelic Ascension is counterproductive, and against blue decks, the flexibility of being able to hit both Mentor and Narset is nice, but giving the opponent a 4/4 is still a real problem, and Pyroblast is able to hit almost anything you'd want to exile with Ascension (with Mentor a notable exception).

Note that you can exile your own creature or planeswalker during the opponent's turn to generate a surprise blocker and accelerate your own clock---surely a niche use, but something to keep in mind.

posted in Single-Card Discussion read more

@thewhitedragon69 You can play Ancient Tombs, I guess.

posted in Vintage Strategy read more

@hardy said in [m21] Necromentia:

Fringe playable in Oath?

I'm not sure what matchups it would help against, though? 1BB is a tall order, especially in the early game, since you probably don't want to be running Bayous. And Lobotomy effects have the usual problem of being very weak unless you have special knowledge of what cards are currently in their hand, or your opponent's deck has a linchpin that hamstrings your opponent's strategy if removed.

Currently Oath struggles against faster combo decks, e.g. Doomsday and PO. Necromentia on Doomsday is probably game-winning but resolving a 1BB spell before they go off strikes me as too unreliable to be a sound strategy. The card likely fares better against PO but again I worry that it's just too slow.

posted in Single-Card Discussion read more

alt text

See the Truth -- 1U
Look at the top three cards of your library. Put one of them into your hand and the rest on the bottom of your library in a any order. If you cast this spell from anywhere other than your hand, instead put all those cards into your hand.

How good does a 1U cantrip need to be to see play in Vintage? Telling Time is unplayable but it's not farfetched to imagine casting this thing easily and often with Snapcaster Mage, baby Jace, Underworld Breach, etc. (Of course Brain Freeze is much better once Breach is in play, but See the Truth both helps you find the Breach and then has a massive payoff once you land it.)

posted in Single-Card Discussion read more

Do nothing is a pretty well accepted term in magic

Ok, but people in this very thread are complaining about sloppy argumentation in spoiler discussions. Just because "it does nothing on its own" has been trotted out in the past as a reason for dismissing a card, doesn't mean that it's useful to keep doing so without critical evaluation.

The "double-dipping" effect Paradoxical Outcome benefits from, where mana artifacts both help cast the spell and also amplify its value on resolution, is definitely a large part of its power level. I don't think that quite covers Yawgmoth's Will, though, where most of its value usually will come from the cantrips, tutors, and other gas spells stocking your graveyard.

How likely a card is to turn around the game when topdecked in the mid- or late-game is certainly an important factor and clearly Insight does not stack up well against Yawgmoth's Will or PO on that axis.

But coming back to "doing nothing on its own," I'm still unsure what definition is being applied that makes the term meaningful. Smokestack does nothing the turn it's played, but becomes useful on its own in later turns. Oath usually does nothing on its own (especially when powered out early) but against some decks can be effective in dissuading the opponent from playing their creatures. Something like Time Vault is pretty close to being completely blank without a second combo piece.

The sense in which Insight "does nothing" is different from these, though, in that it's not inconceivable to set up a board state where the enchantment is immediately valuable (unlike Smokestack, e.g.), by running a critical mass of free card draw effects (from planewalkers, lands like Library or Bazaar) or very efficient card draw, cantrips, and cycling cards, etc, much in the way that ChubbyRain experimented with using Alhammarret's Archive.

I agree that there are probably too many hoops for the card to be useful. My issues is not with the conclusion (that Insight is likely not Vintage-playable) but with the argumentation.