Oh good, another sword

Here’s my New Phyrexia update. I’ll add pictures once they are officially available.

Serra Avenger -> Porcelain Legionnaire

One of the best new cards for cube, going in for a pet card whose time has come. I’m running this in white for ease of sorting and because it’s best there in terms of archetypes and flexibility, but I don’t think there’s anything wrong with sorting these in colorless either.

Eternal Dragon -> Elesh Norn, Grand Cenobite

Eternal Dragon is a cool card, and one I’ve really like since I started playing. But it’s really at its best as a reanimation target, simply because paying five at your upkeep is often a problem. I think it’s gotten creeped out in recent years, and Elesh Norn is a cool effect that I’m interested in trying out. If that doesn’t work, Sunblast Angel will likely be next on the list to try.

Clone -> Phyrexian Metamorph

I love Sculpting Steel a lot. So excited about this!

Timetwister -> Shelldock Isle

I like having Time Spiral a lot, but don’t feel that we really need this effect in a harder-to-abuse form. Shelldock Isle has been on my to-try list for a while.

Silent Specter -> Sheoldred, Whispering One

I love this art, and the card is no slouch either. It may end up costing too much, but I think it’s another one that is worth a try.

Fledgling Djinn -> Despise

About the cut- I’ve often found that my black decks had too many life-loss effects.
Despise is a card that hasn’t gotten a lot of attention, probably because Ostracize is pretty unplayed in cubes. But this hits another really powerful group of cards as well, and creatures are getting better and better. In my cube, this hits over half the non-land cards in the cube, and it’s effectively a little more than that since most decks run more creatures than non-creatures. But the more important number (in my opinion) is that I counted 150 of those targets that are either difficult for black decks to deal with once they are in play, or have already done their damage by the time they can be hit by removal. Think Mulldrifter, Great Sable Stag, Inferno Titan, or Nekrataal.

In summary, I think it’s worth a try.

Keening Banshee -> Dismember

Dismember pretty much needs a spot, and Keening Banshee is the weakest card with a similar function. I still like the uniqueness of Sudden Death well enough to keep it.

Dwarven Blastminer -> Words of War

Should have done this in the first place, really. Whipflare is a good card, but I don’t see the need for another sweeper in red. On a side note, I’ve been very happy with Slagstorm.

Mold Shamber -> Beast Within

This is a card that is hard to evaluate, I think. The drawback is real for green decks, but the ability to hit creatures is special too. And if you need a 3/3 haste, you can have that too. I think this’ll be a card like Gilded Drake that isn’t always exactly what you want, but does a useful thing.

Stuffy Doll -> Sword of War and Peace

Yep. No surprises here.

Brittle Effigy -> Batterskull

One of the best cards in the set for cube. Living Weapon is a cool mechanic, and I’m glad it looks like a cube mainstay.

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12 responses to “Oh good, another sword

  1. I have first picked Shelldock Isle many a time. Good call – I like the card in cube a lot. 🙂

  2. I like your changes all around. Seems you’ve really nailed the strong cards for inclusion. I especially think that the Porcelain Legionnaire, Phyrexian Metamorph, Beast Within, Batterskull and Sword of War and Peace swaps were good. Sheldock Isle is a card that’s been on my list to try as I keep hearing great things about it, but I just haven’t gotten around to including it yet. Seems I should try it out.

  3. Benjamin Huber-Rodriguez

    Seems like some fine changes, but I guess I’d be a little warry about the 7 drop praetors. Overall, it seems like New Phyrexia is much weaker for cube than Mirrodin Besieged or Scars. However, I think some other cards deserve a chance.
    Act of Agression-instant speed act of treason and can be played in all colors, seems interesting enough.
    Inquisitior Exarch-Could fill a spot in white beatdown decks if your cube needs it.
    Karn, Liberated-How could you not put in the colorless planeswalker? He seems at home in green based ramp decks but also seems fine in control decks.
    Invader Parasite-I’ve been trying to give red more LD to make it more competitive, and I like it stacked on a creature (i.e. Ravenous baboons)
    Urabrask , the Hidden-Seems like a complete bomb in creature v. creature matchups
    Mycosynth Wellspring-Colorless land searching is usually good enough in cube, and if you can kill it, that’s just gravy.
    The shrines-Specifically, I like the white one and the red one.

    Thanks for your suggestions as well!

  4. I am a bit surprised that Timetwister ended up in your card to remove list. I don’t play with power and Wheel of Fortune is certainly better in red than Timetwister in blue, but I have been splashing for this card in the past, so I don’t expect the Twister to be that bad.
    You could cut a mediocre card selection spell (Telling Time) or one of the 5 mana creatures instead.

    • I think Timetwister (and Wheel of Fortune, for that matter) are harder to make work in winston, which is what we almost always do. Those cards want to be in a deck that can empty their hand and then fill it with cheap stuff (obviously) and so don’t go in every deck.

      To make it worse, they are problematic if your opponent is better than you at taking advantage of them, which is possible. I wouldn’t be surprised by anyone considering Timetwister uncuttable, but we didn’t have that experience, and more importantly, are happy with Time Spiral for that effect in blue.

      I like Telling Time a lot- I’m always happy to run it- but yeah, I can see a five drop getting cut sooner or later.

  5. I like all of the changes except for Beast Within which I think is pretty trashy. Gilded Drake is very easily abused, Beast Within has more limited options for this and is not in the color that lets you bounce stuff.

    Glad to see Timetwister go. As probably the biggest fan of Time Spiral in the world I hate Timetwister in cube and cut it well before I cut the rest of the P9 and for very different reasons.

  6. quitequieter

    good update, i think you nailed the autoincludes. i’m sad to see eternal dragon, timetwister, and fledgling djinn go but these cards have all had mixed reviews from different cube groups.

    elesh norn looks pretty bad for the cost, anthems are a lot better on aggressive cards and that’s a whole lot of mana for an infest. plus no evasion. i like the black praetor a lot more and if i felt like i needed another expensive black guy i’d be considering her.

    i think beast within will turn out to be pretty bad but it’s a unique spell and it definitely deserves testing.

    anyway, great job!

  7. I don’t believe people are hating Beast Within, it seems like an instant speed vindicate in a color that plays critters that are much bigger than 3/3 itself seems fantastic.

    Jor Kadeen looks like a solid R/W beatstick. 5 power first strike is huge alone, not to mention the possible applications if you have metalcraft. Possibly a good switch for Spitemare in my opinion, although personally I run Rise of the Hobgoblins in that second R/W hybrid spot.

    Not sure how big you are on including combos in your cube, but the Splinter Twin / Kiki Jiki combo just got another target. Deceiver Exarch may be sub-par to pestermite, but he still looks like a house in control decks alone. If you include the exarch with Splinter Twin and Kiki-Jiki to the cube, U/R gets 4 different possible game winning combos, all of which are solid cards on their own. Possible pulls for these picks I’ll suggest are Frantic Search, Coralhelm Commander, Fireslinger, Aftershock and/or Hellkite Charger. And if this is a switch your considering with Kiki-Jiki, Tooth and Nail becomes a one card win condition with this combo.

    Life’s Finale to me seems absolutely amazing for any singleton format. First of all, wrath effects are obvious bombs in the cube, so much so that they have to be included in limited numbers to an extent for many smaller cubes. But this one comes with an extra trick, it gets to yank out your opponents top 3 critters from possibly seeing play. This seems alot better against the control decks using a few hard to deal with fatties, and possibly could remove all of your opponents win conditions in one spell. This one was an auto-include for me, and seems much better than Bane of the Living for a wrath effect.

    Another solid black card is Phyrexian Obliterator, one of the 4 money cards of the set. He may be hard as hell to cast in a winston draft tho, being that you will need to be almost if not mono black to utilize him.

    Benjamin’s comment on Urabrask was spot-on, I’m definately glad to see a solid fires of yavimaya effect on a fattie in red for a conservative cost. Seems solid as hell in my opinion.

    Last, and maybe least for my suggestions is Birthing Pod. I’m trying this thing out due to its higher-than-anticipated awesomeness all over pre-releases this weekend. I’m hoping it’ll work as well if not better in the cube.

    Other includes in my 900 card list are listed below, but may be replaced if they don’t get drafted, and therefore don’t really deserve a comment-

    Etched Monstrosity
    Hex Parasite
    Jin-Gitaxias, Core Auger
    Phyrexian Ingester
    Geth’s Verdict
    Vorinclex, Voice of Hunger

    It seems like the Eureka / Show and Tell / Quicksilver Amulet theme gets much stronger in my cube with this update, and I’m looking forward to seeing it in action.

    -Matt T

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