How do you choose your Basic Lands?

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What do you do when it comes to putting Basic Lands in a deck, from a design and style standpoint? Do you keep all the basics in a given deck from the same set, or mix and match? Any doubling up of the same art, or is each land different? Only use the full portrait lands from Zendikar or Unhinged? Or, maybe you just grab a stack of cards from your row of Forests and don't pay attention to which ones you use. 

I tend to hand-pick my lands, with each being unique while trying to match them aesthetically with other cards in the deck (like Mirrodin & SoM lands in an Artifact-centered deck, "tropical" looking Islands and lively vibrant Forests in my G/U, etc). Though my RDW exclusively uses the foil Mountains from the PDS - minus the Mirrodin one because I find it ugly - so that one just has the same 3 designs over and over again.

I'm interested to see how much consideration other people put into what basic lands go into their decks, or if people even have preferences at all Laughing
Usually, I just pick the basics I need out of my land box. Occasionally, when I build a block constructed deck, I will pick the basics from that block. The one thing, that I make sure of, though, is, to use either only black bordered or only white bordered ones. That is, because if an opponent gets a look at my hand or the top of my library and sees a basic land and then I play one with a different border, he'll actually know one more card in my hand. Basics are so ordinary that the illustration or expansion gets ignored, but different borders scream for attention. I'd do the same for basics with their mana ability spelled out, but the only ones I have are in my land collection binder and won't be used anyway.

(Though I could avoid that situation, by paying attention myself, it is one less thing I need to keep my mind on.)
I run Ravnica, Zendikar and Kamigawa lands almost exclusively.
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108516289 wrote:
Think of how Neo couldn't beat the robots, but they kept him around anyways to defeat Agent Smith. Sure, the robots might not like having a Neo running rampant because instead of playing their favorite 4 drop fatty robot, they have to play a bunch of one mana Matrixs to contain him, but at least Neo keeps Agent Smith from reanimating an Iona on turn two.
139359831 wrote:
Are you saying I'm trying to blame my loss on something? I don't care that I lost, I care that he's a sore loser, and a cheater, and a liar.
144902215 wrote:
CKY, are you bad at anything?
144902215 wrote:
I really enjoy imagining this from Kevin's perspective. Because in Kevin's world, Rosewater actually reads everything he types. Mark is sitting there right now, reading this, and thinking "The greatest trick the devil ever pulled. . ." Or some such. He chuckles low, then clicks on "The Best Of KEVINSET" and says "Yes, this'll do just fine. A busty lady with banding who deals direct damage to Zones!? Why this will be the star of my next set, and no one will ever believe you Kevin." Then he closes his Macbook, so his servant may move it out of the way, while another servant puts a Fetal Richard Garfield Clone lathered in Steak Sauce in front of him. Then Mark Feasts. I mean, In KevinWorld, Mark is reading the very words I'm typing as well. Heck, in KevinWorld maybe I am Mark.
99964981 wrote:
I'm beginning to think CKY may be anime in real life...
57150868 wrote:
Don't go anywhere CKY, I need to crash dramatically through your window and propose marriage and I don't want you throwing off my paradrop.
63588923 wrote:
[In response to a thread about how hard grading is] Upon reading this, I've found myself completely unable to operate in the world. I tried to decide what to eat for breakfast, and pondered the vast consequences of my choice. How do I balance my dietary needs against my desire to eat good-tasting food? Should I factor in how long it takes to prepare? Cereal is ready in moments, but bacon takes longer to cook. Then there is the impact on other industries. Do people in the cereal industry deserve to be employed more than people in the bacon industry? Which industry should I support? I don't even have the data regarding HOW MUCH the cereal industry benefits from me eating a bowl of cereal, or how much the bacon industry benefits from me eating a side of bacon. How can I compare two qualities I can't even quantify? And let's not forget the milk on the cereal. In addition to determining whether or not milk is healthy for me, how much that benefits the milk industry, and how much the people in the milk industry deserve my support, we have to factor in the fact that cows are put under brutal conditions in order to collect thier milk. Of course, the same goes for the pigs, and then they get killed. Of course, I really like bacon. So I need to come up with a scale that compares the value of cow happiness to pig happiness to my happiness. What trade-offs am I willing to make here? Does the fact that the pig gets put out of its misery count as a plus or a minus? Isn't bacon bad for me anyway? Deciding what to eat for breakfast (or any meal) is impossible. Help me!
104339228 wrote:
I must admit chinkeeyong, you have the most interesting character ideas; and you play them well.
144902215 wrote:
Anyway, you'd be surprised about Time Stop. When I first saw that card as a relatively new player I didn't see its full potential until I read the reminder text. Is it that unintuitive, though? Mine I mean. What is possibility? Is it possible for me to type these words with my tusks? No, because I don't have tusks. Although I am now tempted to go buy some - obviously not from poachers or whatever - and use them as typing apparatus. I could be the best secretary ever. "What's your words per minute sir?" "Well, only six, but I use these tusks to type them." "You're hired!" That was the interview. And is anyone else disappointed that "apparati" is not the plural form of apparatus? I just could strangle a dictionary, because "apparatuses" is a real word. I guess it sounds pretty cool. I'll call them my Apparatusks.
I like to have a variety of sets and pictures.



I prefer the older versions of lands. I like the 8th edition Plains...dont know why.
I just grab a stack out of the box, and count out how many I need. The exception is if I have a foil or full art for that land, though unfortunately I have very few of those.
30-35% should be land
26 spells, say 16 are red and 10 are blue.
16/26=62%
.62 x 24(lands) = 14.7
So 15 red
9 blue
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>mfw
I use full art Zendikar basics, though I'd use Unhinged if I had them. Because I'm going all from one set, I often have to use multiple lands of the same arts, but given how sexy the Zendikar lands are I don't mind.

I used to use as many foil lands as I could (and I do have a few), until I read about people getting infractions for marked cards due to all their cards in their deck of a particular type being foil, and realising that the majority of the foil cards in my decks were lands (that is, if I knew how to cut to a foil in my deck, I'd have a fair degree of confidence in it being a land) - so now I just use standard lands. 
I'm all about super-control in MTG. If you're able to stop my shenanigans, then there aren't enough shenanigans. Lv 1 Judge Current Decklists Sweeping Beauty (Casual) A Vision of Clones (Casual) Coming soon... more decks! :-O
I just grab what I need out of the box and go. The only exception I ever made to that was for my soldier deck, which splashes four forests for the sole purpose of being able to play [C]Sigil Captain[/C]. Since I had a few white-bordered forests available, I found four of those to use in an otherwise all-white deck.
I tend to gravitate towards specific land art depending on the deck. My knight deck has only Stephan Martiniere Rav lands (ubw), my UW Blink deck has only Time Spiral Jeremy Jarvis Islands and Richard Wright Plains, I believe my Glare deck has Richard Wright Rav Plains and Forests, etc.
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The "cool kids" make damn sure every basic land of any given type is the exactly the same art and exactly the same set.  It's part of the "never give the opponent more information than what's mandatory" concept.

Seems to me to be a hell of a lot of effort to obfuscate something that's almost never important and that most players don't even notice.
I prefer having all my lands being different art, but I really don't care.  I gave away too many to really accomplish this for at least 3 of the basic types.

If I'm playing with an "old" deck the lands better have the tap symbol on them though.  That's a requirement.
If the deck is themed after something from a particular set/block (like a Metalcraft deck, or a Landfall deck etc) then I use lands from that set/block. Otherwise, I tend to use my full art ZEN lands (which I also use for Packwars).

~ Tim
I am Blue/White Reached DCI Rating 1800 on 28/10/11. :D
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56287226 wrote:
190106923 wrote:
Not bad. But what happens flavor wise when one kamahl kills the other one?
Zis iz a sign uf deep psychological troma, buried in zer subconscious mind. By keelink himzelf, Kamahl iz physically expressink hiz feelinks uf self-disgust ova hiz desire for hiz muzzer. [/GermanPsychologistVoice]
56957928 wrote:
57799958 wrote:
That makes no sense to me. If they spelled the ability out on the card in full then it would not be allowed in a mono-black Commander deck, but because they used a keyword to save space it is allowed? ~ Tim
Yup, just like you can have Birds of paradise in a mono green deck but not Noble Hierarch. YAY COLOR IDENTITY
56287226 wrote:
56888618 wrote:
Is algebra really that difficult?
Survey says yes.
56883218 wrote:
57799958 wrote:
You want to make a milky drink. You squeeze a cow.
I love this description. Like the cows are sponges filled with milk. I can see it all Nick Parks claymation-style with the cow's eyes bugging out momentarily as a giant farmer squeezes it like a squeaky dog toy, and milk shoots out of it.
56287226 wrote:
56735468 wrote:
And no judge will ever give you a game loss for playing snow covered lands.
I now have a new goal in life. ;)
The "cool kids" make damn sure every basic land of any given type is the exactly the same art and exactly the same set.  It's part of the "never give the opponent more information than what's mandatory" concept.

Seems to me to be a hell of a lot of effort to obfuscate something that's almost never important and that most players don't even notice.



That's funny, around my area, it's more Vorthosian among veteran players: A different art for each land.
139359831 wrote:
Clever deduction Watson! Maybe you can explain why Supergirl is trying to kill me.
---- Autocard is your friend. Lightning Bolt = Lightning Bolt
The "cool kids" make damn sure every basic land of any given type is the exactly the same art and exactly the same set.  It's part of the "never give the opponent more information than what's mandatory" concept.



I'm as far opposite as one could get from that concept. In addition to my lands all being different, I try to have my playsets different too. Out of 4 Goblin Arsonists in my deck, one is English (M12), English foil (M12), Italian (RoE), and Japanese (RoE). Two of my Incinerates are from a Duels of the Planeswalkers theme deck, one is from M12, and one is from 10th Edition. It may give a savvy opponent more information than they'd get from me having absolute conformity amongst my cards, but I like the variety. And hunting for foils and foreign-language cards is fun too.

I'm running Alpha Betas now.
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In A.D. 2101...

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*everyone groans at bad pun*
139359831 wrote:
Clever deduction Watson! Maybe you can explain why Supergirl is trying to kill me.
---- Autocard is your friend. Lightning Bolt = Lightning Bolt

I use the basics I think look coolest... Sometimes I like Unhinged basics, sometimes I like Zendikar basics, but sometimes I like basics from specific sets, like the Plains from m10-m11 which features a sunset.


The thing I'm most retentive about though... is that all of the basics in my deck match.


 

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Unglued: Islands, Mountains, Plains
Unhinged: Swamps, Forests

After law school, I'll run Guru exclusively.   
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My basic land box only contains Zendikar and Unhinged lands.
The "cool kids" make damn sure every basic land of any given type is the exactly the same art and exactly the same set.  It's part of the "never give the opponent more information than what's mandatory" concept.

Seems to me to be a hell of a lot of effort to obfuscate something that's almost never important and that most players don't even notice.



That's funny, around my area, it's more Vorthosian among veteran players: A different art for each land.




That's me. And I've been collecting since Revised so it's pretty easy to find enough alternates. 

I also bought way too much Unhinged and Zen/WWK with the express purpose of owning full art lands.  
Proud member of C.A.R.D. - Campaign Against Rare Duals "...but the time has come when lands just need to be better. Creatures have gotten stronger, spells have always been insane, and lands just sat in this awkward place of necessity." Jacob Van Lunen on the refuge duals, 16 Sep 2009. "While it made thematic sense to separate enemy and allied color fixing in the past, we have come around to the definite conclusion that it is just plain incorrect from a game-play perspective. This is one of these situations where game play should just trump flavor." - Sam Stoddard on ending the separation of allied/enemy dual lands. 05 July 2013
Personally, I use whatever is lying around. I would use Unglued, but shelling out $2.00 (at least) per basic is absurd.

Rumor has it that Patrick Sullivan uses only Arabian Nights mountains in his decks. And that's $20 per land.

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56819178 wrote:
So, how would I use a card that has a large in the top half and "sui?l? -- pu?? ?is?q" across the middle?
57031358 wrote:
99113151 wrote:
Winning is not important if: 1. You win by a blowout. 2. You pay billions of dollars in cards to win. If you like wasting money just to win one game, while you could have saved it to lose a few and end up winning more in the future, then it is fine by me.
what? do you ceremonially light your deck on fire after a win?
57169958 wrote:
Or did no one notice Transmogrifying Licid before. (And by not notice, I mean covered their ears and shouted LA LA LA LA )
57193048 wrote:
57169958 wrote:
Hmmm... I think the most awkward situation at the moment is simply the Myr Welder / Equipment / Licid / Aura craziness, but I'm pretty sure he's aware of it.
If the most awkward thing going on right now involves Licids, I declare victory.
56287226 wrote:
We regret to inform you of Trevor Kidd's untimely demise in an unfortunate accident involving a mysteriously blown breaker box and a photophobic creature of unknown origin at his home near Renton, Washington. We at the Wizards Community apologize for any inconvenience or delay, and assure you we'll be preparing a replacement to assume his duties as soon as we finish warming up the cloning vats.
[02:47:46] It doesn't merely "come out of suspend" - you take the last time counter off, and then suspend triggers and say "now cast that! CAST IT NOOOOOW!" [02:47:49] Because suspend has no indoors voice
[10:11:33] !opalescence [10:11:33] Opalescence {2WW} |Enchantment| Each other non-Aura enchantment is a creature with power and toughness each equal to its converted mana cost. It's still an enchantment. · Reserved,UD-R,Vin,Leg,Cla,USBC [10:11:51] *sigh* [10:12:10] Otecko: Do you have a question about Opalescence? [10:12:17] sure [10:12:23] $10 on humility interaction [10:12:25] :P [10:12:29] :D [10:12:47] humility + opalescence put into play by replenish
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58325628 wrote:
Mage is awesome, BTW.
56967858 wrote:
Dear Mage24365, You are totally awesome. Thank you so much. I hope you are able to dine in Paradise without kicking the bucket to actually get there, and that every dollar you ever make magically becomes two more.
58158398 wrote:
56761258 wrote:
I don't think there are any cards like that. There are things that prevent you from activating activated abilities, things that increase their cost, and things that counter them, but I don't think anything triggers from them specifically. There are things that trigger from targeting, so that might be relevant, but I can't think of anything that triggers from targeting a player. I'm almost positive there's nothing that triggers from damage being prevented.
Rings of Brighthearth; Dormant Gomazoa; Samite Ministration.
56761258 wrote:
Well played.

 

Personally, I use whatever is lying around. I would use Unglued, but shelling out $2.00 (at least) per basic is absurd.

Rumor has it that Patrick Sullivan uses only Arabian Nights mountains in his decks. And that's $20 per land.



Guru are $50+
Slave of Tibalt. Currently trading for foils of my bro. PM me. Tarmogoyf on Twitter. Follow me. Team GFG Guns, Fame, Glory Those that require a sig for the ego simply haven't had enough kind words thrown his or her way. Currently looking for prerelease Plains! People who have mailed me rares:
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Malpheas: THANK YOU FOR THE FOIL TIBALT, YOU BEAUTIFUL GUY, YOU! Suudsu2200: Armageddon! Sèance, Dominating Licid, Words of War, Gaea's Anthem, Momentous Fall, Nyxathid PM me to make it happen. Your username will end up here, as the cards you sent me. I reserve the right to order your usernames by the cards I liked the best. Oh, and if you send me some Islands in the package, I'll sign them and mail them back.
i try to keep them the same, using an artwork that i like.  sorry glen angus.
All the same art, with art that tends towards monochromatic palette and non-busy, and maximum contrast against art from the rest of the deck.  This way the absolute minimum brain expenditure is needed during actual gameplay to recognize land in your hand or to avoid giving away information.
I strive for a different picture for each piece of land - this extends to my Mishra's Factorys and Urza's Power Plants, Urza's Mines, and Urza's Towers, as well.  For the basic lands, I do try to keep them all old border or all new border, though.

The Guru lands are cool, as are the APAC and Euro lands.  A regret of mine from my Korea days was not buying APAC when they were new.  As it stands, even I cannot justify buying them at this point...

Cheers!
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For the basic lands in my decks I have 25 that I choose from that are my favorites. Sometimes when I need a land on the fly I use a random one I have from boosters. In terms of non-basic lands, I go for whatever is cheapest. If xth edition shivan reef is cheaper than the apocolypse version I will take it.
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If I build a deck, I usually have the list typed out on my computer.  As far as what kind of basic lands I use, it follows this simple process:
1. Do I have Zendikar full art lands?  If yes, grab as many as possible.
2. If not 1, then use whatever lands available.

Since, you know, full art lands are awesome.  I should get some more...hmm.
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If its black-boardered, I am running it.

Another thing, why don't WoTC just make full-art lands standard for print? They are obviously much much cooler than regular art basics.
If its black-boardered, I am running it.

Another thing, why don't WoTC just make full-art lands standard for print? They are obviously much much cooler than regular art basics.



Are they that much more expensive to print than regular land? Maybe it costs that much more for the artists to draw up full art versions of lands?

I do agree that it would be great to have full art basic lands be standard 
And there's the Creepy Doll That always follows you It's got a ruined eye That's always open And there's a Creepy Doll That always follows you It's got a pretty mouth To swallow you whole
Depends on the deck. Most decks get lands with all the same art, although sometimes I go with a theme- Islands with waterfalls, Mountians with red skys, etc.
Another thing, why don't WoTC just make full-art lands standard for print? They are obviously much much cooler than regular art basics.



Because they want full-art lands to stay 'special'. Read it as 'they will buy more packs!'.

[<o>]
If its black-boardered, I am running it.

Another thing, why don't WoTC just make full-art lands standard for print? They are obviously much much cooler than regular art basics.



Because then, you wouldn't care about them.
I'v used all of the approaches to basic land that were mentioned, I used all full-art Zendikar Plains for my Knight deck because full art lands are pimping, for my infect deck I used only Scars block forest and swamps and made sure each had different artwork. Back when I was running a Exalted deck I only used Alara lands especially the plains and forests that looked all lush and jungle like. When I'm testing a deck it gets the handful-o-land treatment once i'v played and tested it throughly assuming it passed then ill try to find lands that match that decks character.

Here is an idea I had earlier that I think would be awesome. What if they made lands, Either full-art or normal, that had that particular color's Big Iconic beasty in the back ground. Obviously It couldnt be in the foreground because that might lead people to believe its a creature card. 

but have:

Mountains with Dragon(s) flying over the mountain range
Swamps with a Demon flying over
Islands with a Sphinx flying over or maybe a Kraken/Leviathan lurking under the water
Plains with a lone Knight atop his horse out on the plain or an Angel standing/flying
Forests with a Troll moving between the trees or a Wurm rampaging through the forest.

I think it would be a pretty sweet way to mix it up for a set.                  
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Normally I use full art Zendikar lands with matching pictures.
Except for my "99 Forests" EDH deck with a different art for each Forest.
The end is always nigh.
I'v used all of the approaches to basic land that were mentioned, I used all full-art Zendikar Plains for my Knight deck because full art lands are pimping, for my infect deck I used only Scars block forest and swamps and made sure each had different artwork. Back when I was running a Exalted deck I only used Alara lands especially the plains and forests that looked all lush and jungle like. When I'm testing a deck it gets the handful-o-land treatment once i'v played and tested it throughly assuming it passed then ill try to find lands that match that decks character.

Here is an idea I had earlier that I think would be awesome. What if they made lands, Either full-art or normal, that had that particular color's Big Iconic beasty in the back ground. Obviously It couldnt be in the foreground because that might lead people to believe its a creature card. 

but have:

Mountains with Dragon(s) flying over the mountain range
Swamps with a Demon flying over
Islands with a Sphinx flying over or maybe a Kraken/Leviathan lurking under the water
Plains with a lone Knight atop his horse out on the plain or an Angel standing/flying
Forests with a Troll moving between the trees or a Wurm rampaging through the forest.

I think it would be a pretty sweet way to mix it up for a set.                  




WOTC has specifically said they like to keep the land art free of creatures/people, and even structures for the very reason you mention. A lot of players memorize cards by art, and that could throw some folks off. This is one area I agree with the official party line. 

If its black-boardered, I am running it.

Another thing, why don't WoTC just make full-art lands standard for print? They are obviously much much cooler than regular art basics.



Because then, you wouldn't care about them.




Life is short, use the good china.

www.associatedcontent.com/article/576359...


And pursuant to my comments to KrymsinViking above, you could also argue that having all lands be full art would help distinguish cards on the battlefield. 
Proud member of C.A.R.D. - Campaign Against Rare Duals "...but the time has come when lands just need to be better. Creatures have gotten stronger, spells have always been insane, and lands just sat in this awkward place of necessity." Jacob Van Lunen on the refuge duals, 16 Sep 2009. "While it made thematic sense to separate enemy and allied color fixing in the past, we have come around to the definite conclusion that it is just plain incorrect from a game-play perspective. This is one of these situations where game play should just trump flavor." - Sam Stoddard on ending the separation of allied/enemy dual lands. 05 July 2013
Normally I use full art Zendikar lands with matching pictures.
Except for my "99 Forests" EDH deck with a different art for each Forest.



99 Forests? is it a man-land deck?

I wish I had Zendikar lands to use in my decks, but I do not, so generally I just grab howevver many I need. If I notice a land that I don't like I might change it if I remember to 
And there's the Creepy Doll That always follows you It's got a ruined eye That's always open And there's a Creepy Doll That always follows you It's got a pretty mouth To swallow you whole
I treat all my black-bordered, new-framed basic lands as interchangable.  That way I get a good, random mix when I make a deck.
What about no-art lands ? I think it might be cool to have a huge mana symbol on the center of the card, or a simplified sketch of the basic land type. Or better, a card that has the same color as the mana it produces, with the symbol of the expansion in the center. 

I was thinking of pokemon and their "energy cards". I was also thinking about the appeal of alpha basic lands. The simplicity of the art makes them easy to identify. 

Will the zendikar (full art) lands increase in value in the next 5 years ? 10 years ?  
I run Ravnica, Zendikar and Kamigawa lands almost exclusively.



What about no-art lands ? I think it might be cool to have a huge mana symbol on the center of the card, or a simplified sketch of the basic land type. Or better, a card that has the same color as the mana it produces, with the symbol of the expansion in the center. 

I was thinking of pokemon and their "energy cards". I was also thinking about the appeal of alpha basic lands. The simplicity of the art makes them easy to identify. 

Will the zendikar (full art) lands increase in value in the next 5 years ? 10 years ?  

I actually had the idea a while back of lands that look exactly like energy cards, but with the mana symbol instead of the energy symbol (and the correct name on top).  I thought those would be awesome and would play them in casual games.
Normally I use full art Zendikar lands with matching pictures.
Except for my "99 Forests" EDH deck with a different art for each Forest.



99 Forests? is it a man-land deck?

I wish I had Zendikar lands to use in my decks, but I do not, so generally I just grab howevver many I need. If I notice a land that I don't like I might change it if I remember to 


No, it's a deck that intentionally does nothing. EDH with Azusa, Lost but Seeking as the general.
The end is always nigh.