Normally I cover tabletop games more than I cover something like Magic, but with the new expansion release, I had to tackle it. Especially after I drafted this:
That bad boy is Ugin, the single card in this entire expansion that I wanted. This might not mean much to those who don’t play Magic, but let’s put it this way, this card is worth about $30 all by himself. He’s the most expensive & valuable card in the new expansion. I’m trying to build a dragon-themed 5 color Commander deck, and he serves a pivotal role.
Being a mythic rare, we had a 1.25% chance to pull him, and I pulled him as the last card in a Fat-Pack draft my husband and I just did.
Most of the new cards are decent. I love the new mechanics, Khans vs. Dragons and Bolster. In fact, despite drafting poorly at the pre-release, I built a deck of blue & white weenies around the bolster mechanic. Players assumed my weenies weren’t a threat until I bolstered them 5-6 times, sometimes all in 1 turn. A couple of turns into a game left me with quite a number of 5/5+ creatures in the field instead of 1/1’s, and the game was mine. It worked very well for me!
One of the most under-valued cards I used in the draft was Citadel Siege. Most people who drafted this at pre-release wrote it off as a card not worth using. In fact, our local card store has it for 99 cents. Way under priced! This card is a beast when used correctly.
With Dragons, I can tap a creature each opponent controls every turn at the beginning of combat.
During the pre-release, my husband obliterated me with this card (yes, we ended up randomly paired against each other). He didn’t have an Ugin either. When my husband and I drafted, I kept him locked down the entire game with this card until I got Ugin out. Then I killed him with Ugin. Made for an excellent pair.
Couple the two free counters with bolster cards and you have the possibility of making any creature a serious heavy-hitter. Many of the bolster cards have low casting costs, too. I consider Citadel Siege a game breaking card, though most players haven’t figured that out yet. I think they’re too caught up in Ugin–not that I blame them!
The manifest mechanic looks pretty interesting as well. I used it a few times during pre-release, though I only managed to manifest lands. Ugh.
I’m most impressed with the white & red cards in Fate Reforged–great cards like Valorous Stance, Wardscale Dragon, Alesha, Who Smiles at Death, Arcbond, Crucible of the Spirit Dragon, Dragonscale General, Mastery of the Unseen, Outpost Siege, and so many others.
The dragons in this are mostly awesome. One or two cost too much for what they are or do, but most are decent such as Atarka, World Render Legendary Creature (Dragon). This one is a 6/4 with flying and trample. Also, whenever a dragon you control attacks, it gains double strike until end of turn.
At the pre-release, I witnessed a lot of complaining from players about their sucky drafts and how much they disliked this small expansion. Honestly, I think they haven’t bothered to read the cards. I’ve found this set to be excellent–much better than M15 core and right up there with Theros, Return to Ravnica, etc.
Time for another draft!