Tuesday, January 31, 2012

RCotD #81

Random Card of the Day #81:

Avatar of Me - 2UU
Creature - Avatar
Avatar of Me costs {1} more to play for each ten years you've been alive.
Avatar of Me's power is equal to your height in feet and its toughness is equal to your American shoe size. Round to the nearest ½.
Avatar of Me's color is the color of your eyes.

Initial thoughts:

Well, it was only a matter of time until we got an Unhinged card. Kind of fitting after our MUCMonday.

I don't know what to say about this, I mean it varies between each person. The average M:tG player is in their twenties so I guess it's a 6 cost Avatar. Somewhere between 5½-6½ power and it's toughness between 10 and 13. So I suppose it's above the curve. If you would take a reference to RCotD #32:

2-cost 2/2 -- average
3-cost 3/3 -- average
4-cost 4/4 -- below average
4-cost 4/5 -- average
5-cost 6/6 -- average

So by this logic a 6-cost 6/9 vanilla will be about average. Typically you get 6 cost 6/6 fliers but when you add flying to it, it is no longer a vanilla creature. Even if it was a 6-cost 6½/13 I would still not play it. The color of it seems irrelevant, but I guess brown would have to "round to" black.

I suppose the card is good because it's above the curve slightly, but if you're dropping a 6-cost to win games, I would probably compare it to Wurmcoil Engine or any of the Titans still. So I feel most of the time it's a 3/5.

But it's a 6-cost 5½/10½ to me. So 2/5. I would have loved to see a person yell "Judge!" at a Limited event of Unhinged--if only to protest to have it's power accurately measured.

Monday, January 30, 2012

Comic, Contributors, Contacts...And the Future!

Ok so imma jump into this we have a few topics to cover with this post let's get to it.


So I posted the preview of our new webcomic yesterday! Well I promised I'd tell you more and here it is:
Bangchuckers! has been floating around Bit and my heads for probably 4 years now we just never got around to doing it...when I started this blog with Sefah I saw an opportunity too good to pass up. No this is not a MtG comic but it is a comic written by and for gamers and and their friends. It will feature largely comics based on: Conversations we have had, Jokes we have made, and real stories that have happened in out years as friends.
The main cast is Cj (aka Bit), Victoria (aka Azyzl), Jonny (aka Sefah), and Sean (aka Me aka Lolzor). Yes those are our real names. Any way it written/scripted mainly by me and CJ and is drawn and creatively adjusted by V. I really hope you enjoy it and am excited to start posting it regularly in the future.


Now I have to talk about my artist. Victoria has been a long friend of everyone here and was surprisingly excited to draw this comic for us. Yes, she is a gamer. Yes, she is a girl.

Any way she gets her own section because this is not her only work she is a very proficient artist and I would like to use my resources to spread her work so here we go!


A Celestial Story (Comic/Story): http://acelestialstory.thecomicseries.com/

Twitter (If you wanna say hi!): https://twitter.com/#!/azyzl

Her work is great and she is very friendly, please check her stuff out.


Well we don't hear from you guys a lot and maybe that's our fault...maybe we aren't inviting so here is all and any info for us because frankly...we wanna talk to you guys!

Email (feel free to send us anything): Bangchuckers@snowcoveredswamp.com

Twitter (This one is my personal one): Lolzor_TTR

Comments: Its below each post...dont be afraid to tell Sefah he is wrong, I encourage it!

The Future of SCS

Ok so some last minute clean ups here.

The comic...hopefully with in a month or so I will be posting it every other Wednesday. Why every other you ask? Well till we have more comics back logged I'd like to keep a slow pace as to never miss a day. Once we get this rolling I hope to increase the pace to every week.

Podcasts! I hope to start 2 of them. One with Sefah which will be purely a magic fun times and one with Bit which will be mainly dicking around. These would be monthly and would be 2 weeks apart from each other. Now I cant promise these its just an idea at the moment but I thought Id let you guys in on where we might be headed.

Oh and one more...MAJOR CHANGE...we bought a domain! No more clunky blogspot we are now sleak and awesome www.snowcoveredswamp.com tell ur friends!

Any that's all for now.

Thanks to all of you from the us here at Bangchuckers! and SCS

MUCMonday #7

Making Up Cards Monday #7:

Welcome to our Monday segment, Making Up Cards Monday where we... well, make up cards. Most of them have inspirations behind them and sometimes you just wanted to make a funny card, or a card that had your flavor to it.

This week I will actually be posting a bunch of joke cards. And by joke I mean some of them would work in a game so they are black bordered and others just flat out don't work, or are too easily broken. But at least the concept of the card is still there.

Anti-Hexproof - U
Target creature loses hexproof until end of turn.

Lolzor made this card because he knows how much I hate hexproof. That's basically it. It doesn't work, and it's useless. But that's the joke.

Beer Pong - 6
When Beer Pong enters the battlefield, if it’s not a token, put a token that’s a copy of Beer Pong under the control of target opponent.
Beer Pong enters the battlefield with 6 cup counters on it.
{2}, {T}: Flip two coins. For each heads, you may remove a cup counter from Beer Pong. If both coins are heads, repeat this process. Then, if Beer Pong has no counters on it, you win the game.

Okay so this one is kind of close to becoming a real card--with the exception of it's low activation cost. It's a silver-bordered card because I could easily see this broken with cards like Hex Parasite or Vampire Hexmage. But more importantly it doesn't fit into any of the lore of Magic the Gathering, so that's why it has a silver border.

I also considered making it a legendary artifact with a "The legend rule doesn't apply if there are exactly two permanents named Beer Pong on the battlefield." Kind of like Brothers Yamazaki. But if your opponent plays Copy Artifact on this, by all means he can copy it. Especially in multiplayer.

Jimmy the Bellboy - BG
Creature - Human Assassin
{B}{G}, return an untapped blocking creature you control to its owner’s hand: Put Jimmy the Bellboy onto the battlefield blocking target attacking creature.

Okay, so his ability is like the opposite of Ninjutsu. This card was designed while I was playing The Ship--a game. The plot is you're stuck on a cruiseline. Each person on the cruiseline has a designated victim. All you have is the name, so you have to interact with everyone until you find them, and then strike at the right time while getting close to them; and unbeknownst to you, other people on the cruiseline have been given names as well. One of them is yours.

Very early on in the game there is a character called Jimmy the Bellboy who is so incredibly helpful to you and tries his sincerest to get you out of here alive. I haven't finished playing the game but I'm fairly certain that the same guy who is trying to help you is actually your killer. Thus, Jimmy the Bellboy is an assassin that comes in at any point in time and can kill you through combat damage.

He could also be a legendary creature, but I wouldn't increase his rarity for that. Also there should be a lot of bellboys on a cruise line, so you can have four out at a time.

Pack of Grizzly Bears - 1G
Creature - Bear
Pack of Grizzly Bears enters the battlefield with a +1/+1 counter for each other card named Pack of Grizzly Bears cast this turn.
Whenever another creature named Pack of Grizzly Bears enters the battlefield, if Pack of Grizzly Bears entered the battlefield this turn, put a +1/+1 counter on it.
{2}{G}, {T}: Search your library for another card named Pack of Grizzly Bears and put it into your hand. You may activate this ability as if Pack of Grizzly Bears had haste.

This one actually took me a while to get the effects down right. When Lolzor first got into Magic, I handed him a bunch of my bulk cards; and after looking through them he made a green/black deck. One of his favorite cards was Grizzly Bears because well, it was an easy two-drop and it didn't die to Prodigal Pyromancer. So when he started playing, one of the jokes was that if they were cast on the same turn, they were 3/3's instead of 2/2's.

The additional clause for searching for more is pretty expensive, but it adds something to the card kind of like Squadron Hawk. For 1G you get a 2/2, for 4GGG you get two 3/3's, one of which is tapped. For 7GGGGG You can get three 4/4's, two of which are tapped. And if for some reason you are sitting on 18 mana, you can get one untapped 5/5 and three more tapped. It is a lot more intricate than a common should be, but it still has the power level in respect to its mana cost as a common.

Well thanks for reading our MUCMonday; come back daily for our random cards and Friday's for interesting plays!

RCotD #80

Random Card of the Day #80:

Dwarven Warriors - 2R
Creature - Dwarf Warrior
{T}: Target creature with power 2 or less is unblockable this turn.

Initial thoughts:

Strictly worse than Goblin Tunneler. Every card game has a power creep, but Magic: the Gathering actually does a pretty good job at keeping things maintained. The most powerful of the cards actually seem to be from older sets (to me at least). Sometimes its due to poor wording but other times because R&D wasn't thinking about balance issues.

But as for the card, it would be a 3/5 if Goblin Tunneler didn't exist. It still has its utility--which in particular I personally abused with Kiln Fiend--but the fact is, red doesn't really have a lot of utility creature. Prodigal Pyromancer is pretty good, but since that's out of Standard we have Goblin Fireslinger--almost exactly what you wanted, but it still falls short.

I still might play Crossway Vampire depending on the scenario. If all else fails, just Lightning Bolt whatever's in your way. 2/5

Sunday, January 29, 2012


Sooo...Yea this was supposed to be our 100th post...but I was late.

Introducing Bangchuckers! The long awaited webcomic of Snow Covered Swamp. You should notice (eventually) there are new contributors to the site. Well let me tell you who they are! Bitllorrent/Bit is my good friend and co writer CJ and Azyzl is another good friend who is the amazing artist of this series. Now as not crowd the post I will stop talking I will stop typing but keep and eye out for a much longer post on this topic.

Enjoy the preview of Bangchuckers!

To be fair, Black Cat is actually a pretty decent card.

Banchuckers! Archive


RCotD #79

Random Card of the Day #79:

Hipparion - 1W
Creature - Horse
Hipparion can't block creatures with power 3 or greater unless you pay {1}.

Initial thoughts:

Honestly a terrible card. I just look at it and wonder why a 2-cost 1/3 creature has to have a drawback. I really don't think it was necessary. I mean there's already Temple Acolyte, which is decent, but particularly strong against aggro or swarm decks. Kithkin Zealot could prove to be more powerful in certain situations.

Even a vanilla 1/3 creature for two mana would be playable in Limited; but because of his drawback, you can't chump block a Lightning Elemental without paying mana--its really unnecessary.

I'm not sure if this cards needs to be fixed. There are enough 2 cost 1/3s in the game that you can safely ignore this one without ever seeing it again. Ever. 1/5

RCotD #78

Random Card of the Day #78:

Doomsday Specter - 2UB
Creature - Specter
When Doomsday Specter enters the battlefield, return a blue or black creature you control to its owner's hand.
Whenever Doomsday Specter deals combat damage to a player, look at that player's hand and choose a card from it. The player discards that card.

Initial thoughts:

Wow. I'm sorry for posting this so late guys. If you didn't know today was the pre-release for the Dark Ascension. Me (Sefah), Lolzor, and my friend who I guess I will deem LightningCount, all went to the pre-release. Needless to say, we were quite occupied after two sealed events and then returning for home for more EDH. Most magic filled day in a long while.

Anyways about the card it is really bad. Like, not as bad as Goblin Bangchuckers, but still pretty bad in comparison to the other specters.

The cheapest specter I know of (with the actual combat damage discard, unlike Liliana's Specter) is Hypnotic Specter. It seems kind of unfair to compare a random discard to a chosen discard, so I would rather compare it to Shimian Specter. The difference besides searching everything and exiling it, is that is doesn't hit lands. And although it may be nifty, discarding lands at turn 5 when he can finally swing is not exactly the best, not to mention depending on the deck you are facing it will either be removed, or targeted discard could be worthless against a fast deck.

The other thing to note is that you can't play it alone. There's not many three drops (or at least amazing ones) that I would play. The perfect one that comes to mind is Sea Gate Oracle, which saw a lot of play at FNM's. Play him, bounce him for the specter, then replay him for his cantrip effect. That might be the best play I can come up with. Besides ridiculous things like playing Faceless Butcher, and with his exile effect on the stack, flash in this Specter with Leyline of Anticipation. Bounce the Faceless Butcher, and when his exile effect resolves you can permanently exile any creature. Like I said, outside of ridiculous things.

Overall, I don't like this card. It's a good card, especially against certain deck archetypes, but I would not play this over some of the other Specters, and actually it's only sub-par because of the bounce effect. I might even Guul Graz Specter over this. 2/5

Friday, January 27, 2012

IPotW #10

Interesting Play of the Week #10:

(I'm tagging the cards as you read this, Lolzor's yelling at me for posting it so late.)

Hello and welcome to Snow Covered Swamp's Interesting Play of the Week. I was unfortuantely unable to play an Archenemy match against my friend's Grixis Control deck this week, but I hope you guys will settle for my deck versus Tempered Steel.

My opening hand was: Island, Swamp, Shimmering Grotto, Ponder, Cellar Door, Naturalize, and Royal Assassin. Even though I didn't have my second black source for Royal Assassin, I still had Shimmering Grotto, so any fourth land, even another Grotto would get him out. I kept my hand, and likewise so did my opponent. However, unlike most of my other games my opponent came out really fast:

T1: Island, Ponder (rearranging: Throne of Empires, Grasp of Darkness, and Horizon Spellbomb in reverse order for drawing.)
T2: Plains, Signal Pest, Memnite (as soon as I saw this I knew I was playing a Tempered Steel deck; my naturalize in my starting hand is looking pretty good.)
T3: Swamp, Cellar Door
T4: Plains, swing for 2, Hovermyr (Vigilance is something my deck has trouble against.)
T5: Shimmering Grotto
T6: Forest, Tempered Steel, resp. Naturalize the Tempered Steel before combat damage, taking 4 damage.
T7: Draw, go
T8: Enter attack step, Grasp of Darkness the Signal Pest. Swing for 2. Naturalize targeting Cellar Door.
T9: Draw, go
T10: Tempered Steel, resp. Grasp of Darkness targeting Hovermyr, swings for 3, bringing me to 9 life.
T11: Crown of Empires, Horizon Spellbomb
T12: Oblivion Ring the Crown, swing for 3.
T13: Island, Royal Assassin
T14: Swing for 3, Bird of Paradise.
T15: He stops me at my upkeep, and plays Feeling of Dread Royal Assassin. I'm not sure why. Maybe he think I'm an idiot? Response: tap Royal Assassin the Memnite. Shimmering Grotto.
T16: Shimmering Grotto, Glissa, the Traitor, desperate Think Twice into a Horizon Spellbomb. Was hoping for a Mana Leak. End of turn flashback Think Twice.

At this point I'm holding onto a Dissipate, Throne of Empire, and another Horizon Spellbomb.

T17: Draw into a swamp, go.
T18: Flashback Feeling of Dread, targeting Royal Assassin, resp. Dissipate. Glissa swings into Royal Assassin. Misplay? Day of Judgement. Meh.

At this point the game becomes a standstill. I'm sitting at 3 life, but he's still at 20. At least the board is clear though.

T19: Draw into: Grasp of Darkness. Resolve Throne of Empires
T20: Phyrexia's Core. End of turn, Tap throne for a 1/1 soldier. At this point I think I have him since 1) he's top decking, 2) I have Throne on the field.
T21: Swing for 1. Forest.
T22: Oblivion Ring on Throne of Empires. Tap in response and get a 1/1 soldier. End of turn Horizon Spellbomb with cantrip.
T23: Island, swing for 2. Trigon of Corruption.
T24: Necropede. It's a 3/3 because of Tempered Steel.
T25: Grasp of Darkness the Necropede, Necropede's effect triggers and kills a soldier. Swing for 1. Tumble Magnet.
T26: Plains, go.
T27: Swing for 1, Scepter of Empires--another pinging device to get me to win.
T28: Phyrexia's Core. End of turn Trigon counter, Scepter ping.
T29: Shimmering Grotto, swing for 1.
T30: Perilous Myr, end of turn Trigon -1/-1 on Perilous Myr, scepter ping.
T31: Oblivion Ring on Scepter of Empires. At this point I'm very sad. I got all three of my empire artifacts, but all three are Oblivion Ring'd. I only have 2 Naturalize in my deck and one was already used. I swing for 1, but he blocks the soldier, before combat damage -1/-1 counter on Perilous Myr, both die, Perilous Myr's triggered ability hits my life for two bringing me to one.
T32: Swamp, go.
T33: Another Necropede. End of turn Trigon bringing it to a 2/2. Now I can't play my Royal Assassin because he would just kill it.
T34: Island.
T35: Plains, enter combat, tap the Necropede down with Tumble Magnet. End of turn, Trigon Necropede bringing it to a 1/1.
T36: Swamp, put a counter on Trigon. Right now my hand has: Mana Leak, Silent Departure.
T37: Tap down the Necropede.
T38: Draw, go.
T39: Tempered Steel, I respond by Trigon'ing the Necropede, he responds by activating Phyrexia's Core, gaining one life and sacrificing Necropede. End of turn Think Twice, flashback Think Twice
T40: Swamp, Vedalken Anatomist, Royal Assassin.
T41: Draw, go. He has 2 cards in hand.
T42: Swing for 2. He's at 9 life.
T43: Shimmering Grotto. End of turn put a counter of Trigon.
T44: I draw into my second and last Naturalize, perfect--swing for 2.
T45: Day of Judgement. End of turn Naturalize the Oblivion Ring holding Throne of Empires. After returning the Throne, activate it for a token. Put another charge counter on Trigon of Corruption.
T46: Swing for 1.
T47: Draw, go. End of turn Throne activate, put another charge counter on Trigon.
T48: Enter combat but Feeling of Dread taps down my soldiers.
T49: Shimmering Grotto. End of turn Throne and Trigon.
T50: Enter combat, flashback Feeling of Dread, swing for 1.
T51: Hovermyr. End of turn Tribute to Hunger, response activate Phyrexia's Core, gaining 1 life. Also Trigon and Throne.
T52: Swing for 4. He's at 2 life.
T53: Draw, he concedes.

And for my Still Had All Deez: Mana Leak, Mana Leak, Silent Departure, Mind Control, Royal Assassin.

I liked this game. It definitely showed at least half of our deck, probably more with the sift and cantrips I was playing. I particularly like stabalizing against decks, and this one I stabalized at one life. It's just seems to dastardly staring at a field with a bunch of 1/1's and you are helpless.

The other games I've played this week were somewhat decent, but I didn't feel like posting a game where I was getting destroyed by a Heartless Summoning deck where I only won because he ran out of time. The other game that was particularly funny with hundreds of Myr's on the battlefield versus my other hundred of Soldiers from my full Empire stuff, where I lost due to a miscalculation of combat damage.

And Lolzor doesn't want me posting the game where he lost because of Piston Sledge sacrificing it's own equipped creature to get morbid and cast Brimstone Volley and stall the game until Vault Skirge pinged him out. Good games and good plays, but not so much as stabalizing and coming back from 1 life.

Well thanks for reading our IPotW! Come back Mondays (or everyday) for what seems to be our most popular segment: Making Up Cards Monday! Be sure to stop by on Sunday for a special treat, courtesy of Lolzor and co.

RCotD #77

Random Card of the Day #77:

Blanchwood Armor - 2G
Enchantment - Aura
Enchant creature
Enchanted creature gets +X/+X where X is the number of forests you control.

Initial thoughts:

MUHAHAHHAHAAHAHH Lolzor here doing the card of the day because Sefah is asleep and I called in sick from work.

Anyway I happen to love Blanchwood armor, not be cause its good but because its one of those timmy cards I like to play. It is pretty strong in a mono green deck which isnt the worst color to be mono with, at the very least if you play it right away its a 3 cost +3/+3 enchantment if you play it later (esp with green ramp) its much stronger. Now the main problem is its an enchantment...Sefah has a major problems with auras because of how easy it is to get 2 for 1'd and I agree to an extent. Also its not even as good as say....Claws Of Valakut...at least with Valakut you get first strike.

Lets try a how i would fix this card.

Blanchwood Armor 2.0 - 2G

Enchantment - Aura
Enchant creature
Enchanted creature gets +X/+X where X is the number of forest you control and trample

See the main problem I saw was its an easy 2 for 1 and the fact that no matter how big this creature gets you still get chump blocked. Adding trample adds more of a threat/win condition to this that is more fitting for the cost.

Still its not an awful card and is still fairly strong in green 3/5

Thursday, January 26, 2012

RCotD #76

Random Card of the Day #76:

Howl of the Night Pack - 6G
Put a 2/2 green Wolf creature token onto the battlefield for each Forest you control.

Initial thoughts:

I love cards that reward you for playing basic land types. It's got the right amount of balance between Spikes playing Misty Rainforest fetching out Tropical Island and Timmy playing a Forest.

This card I know in particular because one of my friends played this as his game finisher in his monogreen ramp deck. At least that's what he played up until he "quit" magic.

Back when I first started playing magic I would probably concede when this card hits the field. But nowadays, since my playstyle has changed, I would just shrug it off and lifelink it back, or Day of Judgement or even flashback Rolling Temblor. That doesn't necessarily make it a bad card, it just means it has answers, and well, everything in this game has answers. Now that I look at it with a lot more experience, I can understand why it was an uncommon: it's expensive and it only spawns 2/2's. Most of the time it's seven of them, but I'll still stand by what I say to Lolzor a lot: "If you are spending 7-8 mana on a spell, it better win you the game."

Now it does win games, just not on the same level of Sorin's Vengeance. Still a great card. 4/5

Wednesday, January 25, 2012

RCotD #75

Random Card of the Day #75:

Savor the Moment - 1UU
Take an extra turn after this one. Skip the untap step of that turn.

Initial thoughts:

I did not know this card existed. It seems like a good card, at least it's worded as such that it definitely can be taken advantage of. It's difficult to call this card though. Early game with 3 mana you can get another draw and land dropstep. Later in the game, I might want Time Warp over this, but it can still be more abused with Planeswalkers, or heavens forbid: Magosi, the Waterveil.

Okay, so if I was trying to break this card I would want multiple copies--so Panoptic Mirror would probably the best for that. Now I would need to get to untap everything I would want to, Tideforce Elemental can get the creature's you want so long as you can always place a land. But I feel like Candelabra of Tawnos would be perfect. However, you would need a land that produces two mana, which shouldn't be so hard with bouncelands like Coral Atoll. That's more abusing infinite mana than Savor the Moment, but now with your infinite mana you can have infinite turns. Now I'm sure you can just Blue Sun's Zenith all of your opponent's for game. An interesting idea for an EDH deck, but Candelabra of Tawnos is not very easy to get, and it's not very cheap either.

It's just something about this card begs for it to be broken. And worst case scenario it's just a blue Explore, and Explore is pretty awesome. 4/5

Tuesday, January 24, 2012

RCotD #74

Random Card of the Day #74:

Deathgrip - BB
{B}{B}: Counter target green spell.

Initial thoughts:

I'm not quite sure what to say about this card. I feel it's right up in the same alley as my comments on Chill on RCotD #20: it's a superb sideboard or you can make it maindecked if you are playing Sleight of Mind.

However, it's a little worse than Chill. Chill shut down a red deck completely because red has no way to deal with enchantments. As a black enchantment focused on the enemy color green, it's a pretty ill-suited match up. Chill was also a passive effect affecting a tempo based deck. Not to mention this one is extremely mana-intensive.

Like, everything is there to make it an insane card, but cheating out colored mana is a lot harder to do, especially recurring mana. If you run it in mono black it wouldn't be a problem, but then you'd have to know you were playing against Green. If you tried Sleight of Mind then you are U/B and I guess that would work in Legacy/Vintage, but... actually, that's probably it--this card is only legal in eternal formats so only there it can truly shine, but every other well built deck in the same format is better.

It can still work. 3/5. Also worth mentioning: Eastern Paladin.

Monday, January 23, 2012

MUCMonday #6

Making Up Cards Monday #6:

Welcome to our Monday segment, Making Up Cards Monday where we... well, make up cards. Most of them have inspirations behind them and sometimes you just wanted to make a funny card, or a card that had your flavor to it.

Either way, you can read the cards and judge them for yourselves.

Azorius Pinnacle - 0
{T}: Add {1} to your mana pool. You may put a fertility counter on Azorius Pinnacle.
{T}: Add {R} to your mana pool. Activate this ability only if Azorius Pinnacle has one or more fertility counters on it.
{T}, Sacrifice Azorius Pinnacle: Search your library for a Plains or Island and put it onto the battlefield. Activate this ability only if Azorius Pinnacle has two or more fertility counters on it.

This was the land cycle I thought of. I won't bother posting all the other because they function identically. Each one taps for a respective color and their two enemy colors basic lands (which is where the guild name comes in) for its sacrifice effect. This idea was taken from the Shard's cycle of Panoramas because I am kind of expecting a Scars of Alara soon, featuring 5 new shards consisting of enemy colors instead of allied colors.

It comes into play tapped but it takes time for it to be useful. On turn one, you can tap it immediately (since there is no mana burn any more) and it functions identically as a mountain. It begins to lose its value later in the game but it still thins out your deck and could possibly get you the land you need in a different color since it enters untapped. Maybe the fertility counters on its third effect should be three or more counters but it's still a very nice mana fixer, and shouldn't be too expensive if it was ever printed.

Armordillo - GGW
Creature - Armadillo
If a source would deal damage to Armordillo less than its toughness, prevent that damage.

For this I wanted to make a defender-esque creature without it actually having defender. Kind of like Kraken Hatchling does, but it can still attack if you manage to equip it well.

Attaching lifelink to this might have been too much with its second effect but it needed something to deter attacking.

Mindspike - B
As an additional cost to cast Mindspike, reveal a card from your hand.
Each opponent reveals his or her hand and discards a nonland card with converted mana cost X where X is the revealed card’s converted mana cost.

This is one of the cards that Lolzor made. He wanted a cheap discard effect that would work in multiplayer, but he also wanted it to be an instant. The inspiration for this card was Induce Despair where the additional cost was revealing.

There were two problems with this card, the first being a cheap discard effect. Many of the cheap discards have you discard nonland cards. It is too punishing for you to discard a land especially on turn one. The original wording on the card didn't say nonland, but it could be the start of a real bad game if you drop a swamp, play this and reveal a land, which has a converted mana cost of zero, and force your opponent to lose a land.

The second problem was a discard effect being an instant. Instant speed discard in general is a bad idea because you can stop your opponent on his draw step and have them discard their hand. Pretty punishing if they are in topdeck mode. However, this card circum vents that and rewards its controller but "guessing" the cards converted mana cost correctly.

Steel Reserve
{T}: Add {1} to your mana pool.
Metalcraft — As long as you control three or more artifacts, Steel Reserve is a 3/3 Golem artifact creature with shroud.

Another card that Lolzor made. He made this card after a conversation that stemmed between our debate on the spoiled Dark Ascension card: *SPOILER ALERT* Warden of the Wall. I didn't like it because it doesn't win games because it can't swing. It's also turned into a creature on the wrong turn(s) so it can be removed as well. I compared it Glint Hawk Idol, because they function similarly, with the exception of the mana.

The shroud on the Golem I believe was necessary. It's always a creature as long as you have metalcraft so it can still be hit by Wrath of God effects, but now your unused mana is a little safer. Maybe you can even dodge the wrath if you can turn off metalcraft with Phyrexia's Core.

I seriously doubt anyone reading this really cares for accidental spoilers on Dark Ascension because to be honest, if you play Magic you are probably checking on the spoilers daily. I should be writing an article on that soon, because most of my guesses have been correct, especially with Gravecrawler.

Well thanks for reading our MUCMonday; come back daily for our random cards and Friday's for interesting plays!

RCotD #73

Random Card of the Day #73:

Infiltrator il-Kor - 4U
Creature - Kor Rogue
Suspend 2 - 1U

Initial thoughts:

Hmm... interesting card. I love suspend cards, they add a very interesting dynamic to the game. What is important to note is that creatures that come off of suspend have haste.

So on turn two, you suspend this so it comes back turn 4 as a 3/1 "unblockable" haste. That's pretty good, with one small exception.

Suspend if activated on creatures is on sorcery speed. Sorceries on suspend are also on sorcery speed. Unless you can get Jhoira of the Ghitu to suspend it, suspend is basically on sorcery speed.

It's a terrific card, don't get me wrong, I'm just hesitant about it being sorcery speed. For 1U you can also cast Mana Leak, if it's monoblue you can also Counterspell. I feel like traditional blue decks don't play for those aggressive 3/1 decks, they stall and counterspell the game until they can get something like Frost Titan, Sphinx of Jwar Isle, or depending on the colors: Sphinx of Steel Wind. Ya know, those big 6 drops everyone plays.

Now that's traditional blue decks. For all I know this would be the greatest card in a Snapcaster/Delver/Aggro deck--which to be honest is pretty fast on the receiving on end. Still a great card. I just can't think of anything to go with this off the top of my head, but everything for an evasive creature is there. Except shroud. 4/5

Sunday, January 22, 2012

RCotD #72

Random Card of the Day #72:

Jolrail's Centaur - 1GG
Creature - Centaur

Initial thoughts:

Wow. This. This is the kind of card is exactly what green needs. One of the problems that I've had with the color wheel is it's beginning to lose its flavor. Red is still burny, Blue is still controlly but Black is supposed to be creature control, but the best creature destruction goes to White. And then there's Green, which is supposed to be about creatures, but the best creatures aren't Green.

For example, if you are just hearing about a new deck, and someone says they play Red, White, and Blue, you would think "Lightning Bolt, Day of Judgement, Counterspell." Just because those seem to be some of the most powerful cards of it's color. Maybe Oblivion Ring/Swords to Plowshares for White.

Now consider those compared to of their mono-types. The difference between a deck splashing Red and a monored deck is basically just more cards. The difference between a deck splashing White and a monowhite deck is basically just more cards.

But if somebody says they play a monogreen deck, for some reason people kind of ignore it. It's the oldest deck idea of just ramp up and swing with big dudes, but for some reason people disregard it as a viable tactic. However, if someone said they were not monogreen but with another color, people have a lot more respect for the deck. To be honest I think it has a lot to do with the power creep. A 6 cost 6/6 was something typically only green could do. But times have changed.

As for the card, its like a vanilla creature with everything a Green creature needs. If it was printed nowadays it would probably be hexproof instead of shroud, but such is the power creep. 4/5

Saturday, January 21, 2012

RCotD #71

Random Card of the Day #71:

Giant Spider - 3G
Creature - Spider

Initial thoughts:

The new average spider to compare it to since Canopy Spider cycled out a while back. It stops fliers, exactly what it's supposed to do.

Spider's are typically not played, especially as tribal because they lack the aggression required to win games. Not to mention they don't have a lord. They are very good in draft especially because of their high toughness to withstand punishment. With the exception of a couple spiders in the game, all spiders have reach. Those soiders are Giant Trap Door Spider and Root Spider.

But if I were to make a spider lord it would probably be: (outside of Arachnus Spinner)

Spider Lord - 3GG
Creature - Spider
Other spiders you control get +1/+1.
Spiders you control cannot be blocked except by creatures with flying or reach.

Outside of Spider Tribal and Limited this card is just too defensive to be part of a solid deck. I mean you could play a bunch of spiders and play Overrun, but that's not exactly Giant Spider winning the game, that's Overrun.

It's a common, but it's a pretty damn good one. 3/5

Friday, January 20, 2012

IPotW #9

Interesting Play of the Week #8:

Hello and welcome to Snow Covered Swamp's Interesting Play of the Week. I haven't played very many games this week, but this game had a few good plays in it. Next week, if I can, I will try to get an Archenemy game with my friend--he's been working on a Grixis Control deck featuring Nicol Bolas. He has most of the deck built but last time we played he had to borrow my Scheme which didn't exactly fit the needs of his own Scheme deck he had in mind.

That's next week, hopefully. This week it's me with my U/B/G control against a Delver/Stromkirk/Flashback deck.

Starting hand: Swamp, Swamp, Island, Nephalia Drownyard, Vedalken Anatomist, Dissipate, Tribute to Hunger.

The game started out pretty fast considering a turn 1 Stromkirk is what I had to deal with.

T1: Mountain, Stromkirk Noble
T2: Swamp
T3: Sulfur Falls, swing for 1.
T4: Swamp
T5: Island, Ponder, swing for 2.
T6: Island
T7: Island, swing for 3. End of turn Tribute to Hunger, resp. flash in Snapcaster Mage targeting Ponder, sacrifice Snapcaster. (Unable to cast Ponder due to it being a Sorcery.)
T8: Island, Royal Assassin

Like most games, the game just completely stops when Royal Assassin hits the field. If he swings with his 4/4 it will just die. (Well it would become a 5/5 and then die since Royal Assassin has summoning sickness.) He plays another Stromkirk and passes.

T9: Swamp, pass.
T10: Draw, pass.
T11: Nephalia Drownyard, pass.

He topdecks Geistflame and casts it, however I cast Dissipate. He responds with Mana Leak, but I tap out to let Dissipate resolve. It's a good thing I had Dissipate instead of Mana Leak because 1) he could have tapped out to let it resolve and 2) he could have flashed it back to kill it again anyways so the exile effect was really relevant here.

I top draw into Tumble Magnet so while he only has one Island open I cast it, tap it to target his 4/4 Stromkirk Noble, and tap Royal Assassin to kill it. Then I resolve a Vedalken Anatomist.

He resolves another Stromkirk Noble. It's kind of silly to play that at this point in time, though he did get 3 Stromkirks in 15 cards. I give a -1/-1 counter to Stromkirk and tap it just in case. Then I use Tumble Magnet to tap the other Noble and then use Royal Assassin. An open board for me to swing now.

T16: Forest, swing for 2. Main phase 2: Screeching Bat, resp. Cancel
T17: Draw, go.
T18: Swing for 2. Main phase 2: Horizon Spellbomb
T19: Island, Mind Control targeting Royal Assassin. End of turn crack the spellbomb searching for another forest, pay the {G} to draw a card.
T20: Silent Departure Royal Assassin, swing for 1. Re-cast Royal Assassin.
T21: Silent Departure Royal Assassin.
T22: Swing for 1. Re-cast Royal Assassin.
T23: Devil's Play hitting my life for 4.
T24: Swing for 2. Play Morkrut Banshee without Morbid.
T25: Flashback Silent Depature targeting Morkrut Banshee.
T26: Swing for 2. Main phase 2: Re-cast Morkrut Banshee and resolve Cellar Door.
T27: Island, Past in Flames, flashback Ponder. End of turn miss with Cellar Door.
T28: Swing for 6.
T29: Island, Blashemous Act for a board wipe. End of turn miss with Cellar Door.
T30: Blind Zealot.
T31: Silent Departure Blind Zealot. Ludevic's Test Subject. Burning Vengeance. End of turn Tribute to Hunger and another miss with Cellar Door.
T32: Re-cast Blind Zealot
T33: Flashback Silent Departure targeting Blind Zealot, Burning Vengeance hits my life for 2. Mana Leak the Silent Departure. End of turn miss with Cellar Door.
T34: Swing for 2.
T35: Mountain, Flashback Devil's Play for 5, Burning Vengeance kills Blind Zealot. Miss with Cellar Door.
T36: Forest, Naturalize the Burning Vengeance. Royal Assassin.
T37: Flashback Geistflame killing Royal Assassin. EoT: Nephalia mills for 3. Cellar Door miss.
T38: Scepter of Empires.
T39: Burning Vengeance. Blue Sun's Zenith for 2, resp. Naturalize the Burning Vengeance. Mountain. End of turn, Nephalia mill for 3. Cellar Door miss. Scepter pings for 1.
T40: Scepter pings for 1. Game.

I could have typed it out of what I was thinking, what he was possibly holding but I didn't exactly feel like it. I wasn't "in danger" at any point in this match once I dealt with the Stromkirks, but I still enjoyed it. I like long games--even if it's you pinging for 1 unpreventable damage 20 turns in a row. It lets you see the other persons deck and shows you what cards were relevant or not relevant. This game got me thinking of a Burning Vengeance deck, too. I also like outplaying expensive decks; I get a kick out of beating them with mine. Or, at least I think a deck is expensive if it contains a Snapcaster Mage.

Well, sorry for a not-so-exciting ping fest with my U/B deck, but that's typically how it wins. It may not be fun to play against, but control decks might go out the window with the new Dark Ascension spoilers that I've seen so far. It might be about time that aggro takes over since Jund dominated before the Zendikar block. The new keyword might be more annoying than Sprouting Thrinax. And I hated that card.

Well thanks for reading our IPotW. Come back Mondays (or everyday) for what seems to be our most popular segment: Making Up Cards Monday!

Here's the decklist:
3x Forest
6x Island
8x Swamp
2x Nephalia Drownyard
3x Shimmering Grotto

1x Blind Zealot
2x Evil Twin
1x Ludevic's Test Subject // Ludevic's Abomination
1x Morkrut Banshee
4x Royal Assassin
1x Screeching Bat
2x Vedalken Anatomist

1x Cellar Door
1x Scepter of Empires
1x Crown of Empires
1x Throne of Empires
1x Tumble Magnet
1x Trigon of Corruption
2x Horizon Spellbomb
1x Mind Control
2x Dissipate
3x Grasp of Darkness
2x Mana Leak
3x Tribute to Hunger
1x Ponder
2x Silent Departure
2x Naturalize

So the only cards that use green are Horizon Spellbomb and Naturalize. That way I can deal with troublesome Artifacts/Enchantments.

RCotD #70

Random Card of the Day #70:

Adventuring Gear - 1
Artifact - Equipment
Landfall — Whenever a land enters the battlefield under your control, equipped creature gets +2/+2 until end of turn.
Equip - {1}

Initial thoughts:

I think this is the first equipment card we've got on random. Me and this card have a history of winning the funniest draft. For basically a lot of the 6 games I won with a Steppe Lynx with Adventuring Gear, Explorer's Scope, and Kitesail. I maindecked a couple Halimar Depths (which is probably not the best pick in Limited, but I was obsessed with that card when it came out) and kept bouncing it back to my hand with Kor Skyfisher, rearranging the top cards to get another land drop off of Explorer's Scope for double landfall and a flying 9/9 cat. Not the best limited deck I built, but it was too funny because of how often it happened.

In draft, this card was absolutely amazing. Like, absolutely amazing. The +2/+2 isn't reliable, but surprisingly it performed well in decks. It also makes it so that you hold lands in your hand so 1) tricking your opponent into thinking you have more cards than you can actually play and 2) making it relevant if you draw into adventuring gear you can use it, especially if you hit your mana curve already.

I'm not entirely sure about running this card in constructed, though. I might just stick to Trusty Machete. Still a great card.

Limited: 4/5
Constructed: 3/5

Thursday, January 19, 2012

RCotD #69

Random Card of the Day #69:

Homarid Warrior - 4U
Creature - Homarid Warrior
{U}: Homarid Warrior gains shroud until end of turn and doesn't untap during your next untap step. Tap Homarid Warrior.

Initial thoughts:

A 5-cost 3/3 with the ability to gain shroud. As much as I like having on-demand shroud, that last sentence completely ruins the card. The doesn't untap clause doesn't help it's case either.

There really isn't much to say about this card. All you have to do is read it once and see how useless it is. Maybe even a redirect ability like Quicksilver Dragon would be better.

How to fix this card:

Simple, take out the tapping clauses from it, reduce it's cost. Unless you want it to be completely absurd with recasting from graveyards as long as you control a creature with islandwalk--or other ridiculous things. Let's keep it simple.

Fixed Homarid Warrior - 3U
Creature - Homarid Warrior
{U}: Fixed Homarid Warrior gains shroud until end of turn.

Well it was a common, so I don't know what to expect. I'm tempted to give it a 1/5 but I could imagine it being a decent pick in limited.

Limited: 2/5
Constructed: 1/5

Wednesday, January 18, 2012

RCotD #68

Random Card of the Day #67:

Stronghold Machinist - 2U
Creature - Human Spellshaper
{U}{U}, {T}, Discard a card: Counter target noncreature spell.

Initial thoughts:

I both love and hate tap: Counterspell effects. I love them because they seem so powerful in theory, but hate them because it is quite possibly too easily dealt with. This one is different though because it targets noncreature spells--which I think is more fitting for blue, since it's only way to deal with creature is bounce. (Or Psionic Blast but that's entirely different.)

My favorite little card is Disruptive Student. I couldn't find a spot for him in my EDH deck so he's just sitting in my Blue Bounce deck. (It's a really crappy deck designed to take on Archenemies.)

This card is particularly powerful. I think it's noncreature spells that are actually the toughest to deal with in the game. And because of this, this card is basically a {T}: Negate. I think it would be good in certain decks, but it's definitely not a "if you play blue, play this card." 4/5

Tuesday, January 17, 2012

RCotD #67

Random Card of the Day #67:

Plains - 0
Basic Land - Plains
{T}: Add {W} to your mana pool.

Initial thoughts:

It was only a matter of time until I got another basic land. And not even one of the good ones like the Unsets or Zendikar. On the other hand this card is from the set Urza's Saga, which to be honest was a pretty broken set.

What really broke the set is what I call the "Urza clause" which is "Untap up to X lands, where X is this spell's converted mana cost."

Just to name a few:
Time Spiral

Most of these are just other counterparts of spell. Snap is Unsummon but costs {1} more. Rewind is Cancel but costs {1} more. Treachery is just a broken Mind Control (or a Control Magic but costs {1} more.)

Which is pretty good, but these cards are just really, really out of line. Especially with any of the Karoo/Bounce lands, or the super-abusable High Tide. This set is what probably truly "broke" blue if it makes any sense--way back when blue could do anything.

But that's me talking about the set. I wish I was a part of it. I only know about it because I sometimes see it. As for the Plains, I suppose it has excellent synergy with these cards. But as mentioned on the Lolzor double holiday special, it's an auto-include if you play in these colors. 5/5

Monday, January 16, 2012

MUCMonday #5

Making Up Cards Monday #5:

Welcome to our Monday segment, Making Up Cards Monday where we... well, make up cards. Most of them have inspirations behind them and sometimes you just wanted to make a funny card, or a card that had your flavor to it.

Either way, you can read the cards and judge them for yourselves.

Creeping Death - 1B
All creatures get -1/-1 until end of turn.
Landfall - If a land entered the battlefield under your control this turn, all creatures get -2/-2 instead.

This is my take on fixing the outdated Nausea. It's a very cheap effect for something powerful but won't kill any fatties. (Though it could help if you cast it in your second main phase.) But now it can be more powerful with a conditional Landfall. Nausea already took care of swarm decks pretty easily, this one raises the bar for a slight power creep, but doesn't have the -1/-1 counters or shuffle effects like Black Sun's Zenith.

Keen Student - 2UU
Creature - Human Wizard
When Keen Student enters the battlefield, counter target spell with converted mana cost 2 or less.
When Keen Student dies, return target nonland permanent with converted mana cost 4 or less to it's owner's hand.
Evoke 2UU

It's basically a cheaper Lost in the Mist but its got more restrictions on it for what it can counter and bounce.

This is one of the cycles I mentioned about last week. The idea is to have a cycle of uncommons that fit the flavor of each color with an enter the battlefield effect of 2 and a leave the battlefield effect of 4. It's evoke cost will be 2 colored mana and 2 generic mana for 4 converted mana cost. They will all be 2/2's. You can judge this card for yourself but I think it is an amazing card--especially at uncommon. The evoke is just icing on the cake if you need both effects at the right time. This card will be more relevant than you could think.

Pack of Hounds - 1G
Creature - Hound
First strike
Whenever Pack of Hounds attacks alone, it loses first strike until end of turn.

Isn't it funny how we love to make Grizzly Bears obsolete? This card was actually made up between me and Lolzor over a discussion on who would get first strike in all scenarios, using only creature types.

Basically equipment would always give first strike, especially when equipped to a human. Afterwards, we had a debate over Hounds vs. Birds. Hounds are quick to move, especially when hunting, but birds swoop down from the sky at violent velocities. One thing led to another and we ended up making this card. It's got first strike when defending, which is important, but it has it conditionally when attacking.

And one more thing: if you swing with two creatures and your opponent kills one, it keeps the first strike since it didn't attack alone, it is attacking alone--meaning it only triggers like Exalted.

Well I hope you guys liked our cards this week. Come back next week for more cards or everyday for random real cards!

RCotD #66

Random Card of the Day #66:

Timid Drake - 2U
Creature - Drake
When another creature enters the battlefield, return Timid Drake to its owner's hand.

Initial thoughts:


Is this a real card? I was thinking of Norin the Wary when I saw this because of how much he will be bounced around. Norin the Wary looks brave compared to this guy, at least he dared to enter the battlefield.

This card is just absolutely terrible. It's a mana sink, too easy to get rid of, and it doesn't do anything special. I suppose you can make it do something with Warstorm Surge and other cards like it--but it's still way too mana intensive, even for a recurring Lightning Bolt.

How to fix this card:

Simply put: it needs to do something. It's going to be bounced a lot. So it needs to have the benefit of that. One of the ways to fix that is make it more rewarding if was never bounced.

Timid Drake - 2U
Creature - Drake
When another creature enters the battlefield, return Timid Drake to its owner's hand.

Now it's still in bolt range to get rid of it, but if it can swing, 25% of your opponent life total is a lot. And besides the obvious cutting the cost to 1U to make it more playable, the other way is to make it have a leave the battlefield effect:

Timid Drake - 2U
Creature - Drake
When another creature enters the battlefield, return Timid Drake to its owner's hand.
Whenever Timid Drake is returned to it's owner's hand from the battlfield, return target creature to its owner's hand.

Alright, now this card is an absolute bomb. Timid Drake is a recurring bounce. Albeit a hefty, it can get rid of your opponents creature, and only one creature per turn. The last clause makes it so that even if it's Doom Blade'd, it won't bounce something. So it is still subject to removal, and your opponent can get rid of this annoying creature, but you have to keep in mind, if YOU play another creature, especially if you are the only one with creatures, Timid Drake will be your last creature unless you want to bounce your own creature.

If you wanted to take advantage of the bounce of Timid Drake it still costs 2U per turn in addition to any other costs of the creatures you might play. Sure you can reduce this cost to 0 with Memnite or Ornithopter, but now you will need another creature to bounce it. Now this card is just super annoying which attracts removal to it rather than your opponent laughing at you as he taps his Throne of Empires.

Without being fixed this card just won't win games. That said, I might grab a copy to put him in with Norin the Wary along with Lantern Spirit. Quite possibly the worst deck idea ever, but it might be fun to play. It's still bad though. 1/5

Sunday, January 15, 2012

RCotD #65

Random Card of the Day #65:

Yavimaya Wurm - 4GG
Creature - Wurm

Initial thoughts:

Vanilla creatures. Love 'em or hate 'em, they're part of the game. This one is actually a pretty good vanilla creature. It's out of bolt range, and it has 6 power for a 6 cost, which is about par, but it gains trample.

The two cards that come to mind when playing this are Craw Wurm and Stomper Cub. This card is strictly better than Craw Wurm because of the trample. Exactly the same P/T, same mana cost, it's just this one has trample. This card is better than Stomper Cub even though it costs more simply because it is out of bolt range. I can't tell you how many times I thought I've had the winning card in my hand. Such as Ascendant Evincar and he just gets Lightning Bolt'd end of turn, or worse: during combat.

Still, it may be a vanilla creature, but its a pretty good one. But in a constructed deck, if I had the mana to play this card I probably play Baloth Woodcrasher or Brontotherium, depending on my deck. Probably Brontotherium unless I had a silly landfall deck. Or Harrow in my hand. 3/5

Saturday, January 14, 2012

RCotD #64

Random Card of the Day #64:

Magus of the Coffers - 4B
Creature - Human Wizard
{2}, {T}: Add {B} to your mana pool for each Swamp you control.

Initial thoughts:

Cabal Coffers on legs. I probably would have liked it better if it was a 3 cost 2/2 instead, but that's because I like utility creatures being cheap. That doesn't mean however, that this card is bad. If you running Cabal Coffers, or any of the coffers including this card, you should probably be running Urborg, Tomb of Yawgmoth, because well, It's an amazing combo, especially if you are running dual colored lands.

Having utility on large creatures can actually be pretty good. Compare Sphinx of Magosi to Azure Mage. It may not exactly be a fair comparison because of rarity, but the effects are similar. The sphinx is much better though.

So that's about it. I mean I could name a bunch of other creature who have similar utility compared to other high converted mana cost ones, but the effects vary greatly. You wouldn't compare Llanowar Elves to Elvish Aberration or Royal Assassin to Ramses Overdark...

would you?

Still a great card. 4/5