Cards I Like in Constructed Update

I’ve been wanting to find a spot for Sea Gate Oracle for awhile. I imagine this isn’t too controversial.

Justin’s unconvinced but I’m playing the “I want to try it for myself” card. Poor Masticore, by the way.

Crap, how will I Reveillark combo now. I liked Body Double pretty well, but it’s clearly not a staple, and seemed like a reasonable cut while we try quite a few changes in blue. Also, I hear you should always put cards in your cube right after they get unbanned and then finally see a top 8. It’s just fiscal responsibility.

quitequieter recommended this. I can’t say no!

I really love Cunning Sparkmage, and can’t wait to play it in cube. It’s just one of those cards that, in my opinion, appears to have a very specific application, but is actually solid basically all of the time.

Justin pointed this out, and it seems like a great swap to me. The only bummer is losing that Jason Chan art, which is one of my favorites ever. I got absolutely destroyed by this card last night, by the way.


Spitting Image hasn’t seen much play lately- unsurprising as my cube has gotten faster. I love Cold-Eyed Selkie an undue amount, but I also think it’s a card that can be really powerful on occasion, enough to make up for its fragility on others. And even if it’s weak compared to the rest of the cube, there’s nothing wrong with swapping a strong but unplayed card for one that is really likely to be played.


Justin’s not a fan of Psychatog in limited, but there’s no question it is an interesting card, and I do love a discard outlet. Dimir Guildmage is a card I like to play, but underpowered.

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12 responses to “Cards I Like in Constructed Update

  1. ‘Tog is a house and a half in cube. Arguably the best Dimir card – Moat in the early/mid game, alpha striker in the late game.

    • BTW all around upgrades 🙂 Not too huge a fan of the taking out of Volcanic Hammer (Scrapmelter, red Zenith, Comet Storm, Puncture Blast or Flame Slash would be better. Gun to my head, I’d say Comet Storm.)

  2. I like most of these changes… pretty much the only one I dislike is Body Double for Time Spiral, since there are several comparable but better cube cards that rarely make the cut – Time Twister, Mind’s Desire, and Yawgmoth’s Bargain.

    Usman is right, Psychatog should be an automatic in cube. It was quite good in OTJ limited, and it’s even better in a higher-powered cube environment.

    Mirari’s Wake seems like a great addition, I remember thinking about putting it in my cube but haven’t yet for some reason. I’d be sad to see Wilt-Leaf Liege go though – his effect is relatively unique in cube. I’d look for something else to cut first – probably Loxodon Hierarch. Although I have fond memories of the Hierarch, you already have Kitchen Finks in G/W and Obstinate/Ravenous Baloths in G so he feels kind of redundant, as well as being harder to cast than those other guys.

  3. great update, although i think volcanic hammer more than makes the cut and cold eyed selkie is pretty mediocre. agreed with usman about the other possible cuts.

    “pretty much the only one I dislike is Body Double for Time Spiral, since there are several comparable but better cube cards that rarely make the cut – Time Twister, Mind’s Desire, and Yawgmoth’s Bargain.”

    mind’s desire is costly, awkward, and unreliable. i don’t think it’s anything like the other cards you mention. time twister and yawgmoth’s bargain are quite powerful, although bargain is a bit narrow. time spiral is better than all of them, though, because it’s FREE. which matters a lot when you’re getting a ton of cards put into your hand. time spiral lets you play those cards immediately.

    • I could see Scrapmelter or Flame Slash getting cut – definitely considered both this time – but both have been fine and I think they’re safe for now. Flame Slash isn’t sexy, but dealing with four-toughness guys has been valuable in red decks. Comet Storm is very safe- it’s been excellent every time it’s been played. If Red Sun’s Zenith doesn’t work out, it’ll be Banefire again.

      Agree about Time Spiral- I think I’d cut Timetwister first.

  4. I agree with allmost all of those changes except for body double.
    It’s not just a good tool in midrange UW blink decks, it’s also a really important card in Reanimator Strategies.

    IMHO, Time Spiral is really far to be that easy to abuse. A draw 7 is often good if you can accelerate into it to play it at least before T3. That’s something really hard to do with TS.

  5. why would a draw 7 need to come down on turn 1 or 2 to be good? how many decks empty their hands by then in the cube? i’ve never played timetwister, wheel of fortune, or memory jar before turn 3 and i’ve never wanted to.

  6. I’ve played timetwister and wheel of fortune on turn 2 or 3 and they are way more devastating early. The fact that they give your opponent, who almost always has a hand more full than yours, a random hand often can win the game right there. I’ve also played time spiral and its often been too slow, as it then gives my opponent a full grip with mana available to play most of it. It doesn’t really matter that its free, its just too late.

  7. the disruption is only consistently relevant against blue control, so the vast majority of the time it will be all about the card advantage. which means emptying your hand very quickly. can someone give me a probable sample hand that would want to and be able to play timetwister on turn 2?

    “The fact that they give your opponent, who almost always has a hand more full than yours, a random hand often can win the game right there. ”

    their hand was already random. randomizing their random hand isn’t disruptive at all. unless they’ve tutored or done a lot of sculpting (unlikely that they’ve done much by turn 2) you won’t be messing them up at all. mathematically, giving them just what they need is exactly as likely as giving them what they don’t need.

    “I’ve also played time spiral and its often been too slow, as it then gives my opponent a full grip with mana available to play most of it. It doesn’t really matter that its free, its just too late.”

    time spiral is too slow for an aggro deck because it costs 6 mana. but in any deck interested in 6cc+ spells, how could it be too late? in a midrange or control deck you’ll probably draw a finisher or two (and play it). since you build the deck and choose when to play the spell, casting it and having your opponent gain an advantage over you would be entirely your fault. even if you both have 7 cards, you’ll have paid zero mana to looter away 6 cards and cantrip. zero mana. you should see a good portion of your deck, which all but guarantees getting what you need to win. which you can then play immediately, before your opponent can do anything with their mana. the cards put in your opponent’s hand should be less than yours, and they’re randomized so if they benefit your opponent they do so exactly as much as milling would have.

    • their hand was already random. randomizing their random hand isn’t disruptive at all.

      Wrong, because players get the option to mulligan their opening hand but they don’t get the option to mulligan the Timetwister hand. Thus, a random seven card hand is on average worse than a seven card hand your opponent kept.

    • “but in any deck interested in 6cc+ spells, how could it be too late? ”

      If I’m playing a deck with 6cc+ spells, I don’t really want to be casting a draw 7. Either I want something to help me stabilize the board or I want to be casting something that will win me the game, not something that might put 2 burn spells in my opponent’s hand.

      At least timetwister can come down early or late, when you can be up on cards, or need a hail mary. Time spiral only comes late and can provide a much higher chance of negative effects. Having tried both, I’ve currently only got timetwister in my cube.

  8. I think Time Spiral is fine along with Time Twister. My cube used to run Time Warp and Temporal Manipulation, but I dropped Temporal for Time Spiral. Effects like this are important for certain architypes like Red/Blue and Blue/White.

    The change I don’t like is removing spitting image for Cold-Eyed Selkie. Selkie has disappointed me game after game, while Spitting Image always pulls out games I was about to lose. I think it’s a much more relevant card.

    How were you not running Deep Analysis already? That cards name alone gives it a spot in any cube!

    Cunning Sparkmage is a beast and you are right to include him. Everyone under the sun apparently plays Volcanic Hammer except me and you. I can see why it’s good, it just isn’t exciting.

    Mirari’s Wake is a hundred times better than Wilt Leaf. If haven’t ever used it before, you are in for a treat. Get a foil one now. This is also an EDH staple and it’s already above the $20 mark foiled out.

    Whatever you changed Dimir Guildmage out for would have been better. Psychatog has been outclassed in a very overt way in the last few years so I don’t think he’ll do that much for you. I play him too though so what can I say.

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