04/11/2012 Feature: "Planeswalker's Guide to Avacyn Restored: Part 1"

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This thread is for discussion of this Feature Article, which goes live Wednesday morning on magicthegathering.com.
Waitwait...does this mean we get a cycle of 5/5 angels, all with XWW casting costs?

Pleasepleaseplease?! :D

(The art so far is just amazing...especially on all these angels.)
Yes yes yes! Another friend for Kaalia of the Vast to summon! I must want! She's definitely a bomb in draft, but what does the standard meta hold for her?
Yes, we get it.  You guys just lurve EDH for some reason.
Interesting, very interesting. Still doesn't answer any of the many gaping holes in the plot at this point (and in fact only points them out).
And when she watched Griselbrand strike Avacyn with a killing blow and trap her in the Helvault, ... When the Helvault shattered, Avacyn emerged at her full strength.

How?
Only this time, instead of barely containing the monsters of the world, the angels and their human allies began pushing them back, away from the bastions of human civilization. For the first time, they were winning.

HOW?

In another article (www.wizards.com/magic/magazine/article.a...) you said that it became rarer to see angels after Avacyn vanished:
As the days and weeks went by, practitioners of the faith felt the effects. Holy wards failed and prayers to Avacyn went unanswered. Avacyn's host of angels dwindled and were seen more and more rarely.

Here, you say:
Many remained active—more than those of other flights—doubling their efforts to reinforce the wards. These efforts likely saved Thraben from the fate that befell many other towns and settlements.

Now you're saying that they "doubled their efforts"? Maybe you just meant that non-Alabaster angels fell prey to despair and stopped showing up...
During Avacyn's absence, groups of skaab-hunting Goldnight angels became known as "hatchet squads" by the skaberen and human criminal elements.... Most Goldnight angels were steadfast—blindly so—in their denial that Avacyn had disappeared, in fact.

Oh, well, maybe you meant non-Alabaster, non-Goldnight angels...
The angels of this flight continued to travel through remote areas, trying to prop up the failing wards in regions far beyond the safety of Thraben.

Ahh, Flight Heron kept doing its thing too. Hmm. Well I guess none of the angels actually stopped showing up after all.

I really hope we get the answers soon (assuming there actually ARE answers, that is) because as it stands, this story is a disappointing mess. Not the best way to end what began its life as a very promising block...
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After reading an above post, I'll strongly agree that the story has alot of plot hole. Probably a problem that stems from not actually having a developed set of novels to really explain the story of Innistrad. At times, it seems they are doing a bit of backward story telling, creating the sets and themes almost entirely, and then trying to fit that together in some sort of story, overlooking inconsistencies just to make the cards work. Though I will admit, this article was much better written than the previous story article this week about Avacyn's release from the Helvault.

From a gaming stand-point, I am excited to see what new evil creatures they create, since the Devil's Breach was opened (I don't how that happened in the story, not really sure where Griselbrand had the time since he was hunted down by Liliana). I was really looking forward to making a Devil-tribal deck for the first time and Innistrad has given me enough creatures, and it seems Avacyn Restored is going to give me even more options. I'm think we are even going to get a Legendary Devil or Lord by the images on the booster pack. Also looks like they are going to make a few imps (again, due to the Devil's Breach paragraph), so I can rebuild my tribal Imp deck from awhile back.
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Another possible new thing in Avacyn, Soratami? As a refresher, Soratami were the rabbit-like people of Oboro in Kamigawa, known as moon folk. The reason I mention this is the picture for Part 3 of the link for the yet to be released story page has a picture that greatly reminds me of these creatures (small faces and very white skin, with blue markings. The ears even appear long in the background). Here is the link: wizards.com/magic/tcg/article.aspx?x=mtg...

This sounds like a bizzare possibility, but with the strong connection to the moon the people of Innistrad have (werewolves and the other mentionings of the moon), connecting that to moon-folk wouldn't be too crazy. And how else do they connect Innistrad to the overall story of Magic, aside from the petty inclusion of planeswalkers everywhere?

Maybe not, but it would be interesting if a few did show up.
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Another possible new thing in Avacyn, Soratami? As a refresher, Soratami were the rabbit-like people of Oboro in Kamigawa, known as moon folk. The reason I mention this is the picture for Part 3 of the link for the yet to be released story page has a picture that greatly reminds me of these creatures (small faces and very white skin, with blue markings. The ears even appear long in the background). Here is the link: wizards.com/magic/tcg/article.aspx?x=mtg...

This sounds like a bizzare possibility, but with the strong connection to the moon the people of Innistrad have (werewolves and the other mentionings of the moon), connecting that to moon-folk wouldn't be too crazy. And how else do they connect Innistrad to the overall story of Magic, aside from the petty inclusion of planeswalkers everywhere?

Maybe not, but it would be interesting if a few did show up.

Maybe Innistrad won't have Soratami, but the picture is of a Soratami Planeswalker?
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Maybe Innistrad won't have Soratami, but the picture is of a Soratami Planeswalker?



That would be pretty crazy, but it would be nice to have the story to back that up as well. I know the whole story isn't finished yet, but I would have really liked to have read a set of books. I really get into the game when I have books to read along with its release. Mirrodin, Kamigawa, and Ravnica were the big sets I played before I got out, and I read all of the books.  All of them, especially Ravnica, made the game so much more enjoyable because every time I saw or played a card, I could connect to the story or setting and it was all the more involving. But if Soratami or moon-folk get added in, that would be quite a twist.

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Gisela, you look nice, you wanna mary me girl.
Ok bad joke, but she is on a nice card
Prob too expensive for standard, but really nice for casual. 
Another possible new thing in Avacyn, Soratami? As a refresher, Soratami were the rabbit-like people of Oboro in Kamigawa, known as moon folk. The reason I mention this is the picture for Part 3 of the link for the yet to be released story page has a picture that greatly reminds me of these creatures (small faces and very white skin, with blue markings. The ears even appear long in the background). Here is the link: wizards.com/magic/tcg/article.aspx?x=mtg...

This sounds like a bizzare possibility, but with the strong connection to the moon the people of Innistrad have (werewolves and the other mentionings of the moon), connecting that to moon-folk wouldn't be too crazy. And how else do they connect Innistrad to the overall story of Magic, aside from the petty inclusion of planeswalkers everywhere?

Maybe not, but it would be interesting if a few did show up.



MaRo's such a tease: markrosewater.tumblr.com/post/2084727031...

Yes, we get it.  You guys just lurve EDH for some reason.



Fatties were made long before EDH existed.

What those guys lurve, is casual.  

Waitwait...does this mean we get a cycle of 5/5 angels, all with XWW casting costs?

Pleasepleaseplease?! :D

(The art so far is just amazing...especially on all these angels.)



Quite likely we'll see a blue one. Not a black one, as black is singled out like white in Dark Ascension.  

I'm still waiting for this card:


Avacyn Mk. II, Angel of Preparedness

Legendary Creature - Angel
8/8
Flying, Vigilance
Avacyn Mk. II, Angel of Preparedness and other permanents you control are indestructible.
When Avacyn Mk. II, Angel of Preparedness leaves the battlefield, you may destroy target artifact or enchantment.
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I'm going to say yes, but call it Mikaeus instead of Avacyn.


Anyway, that alabaster angel, wow. The white, angled tunic; green slacks; blond hair; black wings; mail shirt; knee-high boots; heroic cape; golden horn; and rapier. Some of the strangest piece of cool I've seen. It just really does it for me.
I hope Stone Throwing Devils get reprinted. I'd like to give my Arabians a ride in Standard!
A happy ending, for once.

Yeah, we've been in a few cycles now where "the world comes to an end; no really!" But not this time! Thank god :p

Of course, the flavor has gotten better and better on magic design, so there's not much to say there except how great it all is. I really like these articles, but somehow I don't think it comes close to conveying the true richness of the world. And if I had to make one criticism it's that, that we might never know all about the other worldbuilding. But otherwise really good stuff.
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I agree with most of the points that chronego made and want to add something....

This Planeswalkers guide was awesome.  It really filled in a lot of holes about what the angels have been doing, and who they are.  The problem is, the angels have apparently very much been around during Innistrad and Dark Ascension time periods.  Yet we didn't see that at all in the cards.  That's really too bad.  I get the point of making Innistrad be a horror trope, but an angel card call "Hatchet Squad" would have been so cool.  (hey, if they can fit a dragon in there....)

And yet again, there's so much potential here, so much depth that could be explored that I'm afraid is just going to be left empty.  Just like Rise of the Eldrazi and New Phyrexia before, there's this immense build-up at the end of the block and then....  thpt.  done.  gone.  I still want to know about Gideon's fight against the Eldrazi.  I still want to know about Urabrask and how he's hiding the Mirrans.  I'm afraid we'll never ever know how Avacyn came back at full strength even though she went in dead. 

I know, my fault for caring about a storyline that isn't apparently meant to be cared about.  The problem is they do such a good job at hyping things, and creating the potential for an incredible story (read: potential for a novel), and then this happens (or will happen - I guess I could give the benefit of the doubt to the creators, since we haven't seen everything yet, but what's the old adage about getting burned once, twice, and thrice? - oh yeah, my fault.) 

That's enough I guess.  Fingers crossed for Avacyn having some kind of dark side....
Another possible new thing in Avacyn, Soratami? As a refresher, Soratami were the rabbit-like people of Oboro in Kamigawa, known as moon folk. The reason I mention this is the picture for Part 3 of the link for the yet to be released story page has a picture that greatly reminds me of these creatures (small faces and very white skin, with blue markings. The ears even appear long in the background). Here is the link: wizards.com/magic/tcg/article.aspx?x=mtg...

This sounds like a bizzare possibility, but with the strong connection to the moon the people of Innistrad have (werewolves and the other mentionings of the moon), connecting that to moon-folk wouldn't be too crazy. And how else do they connect Innistrad to the overall story of Magic, aside from the petty inclusion of planeswalkers everywhere?

Maybe not, but it would be interesting if a few did show up.



That image looked familiar to me yesterday, thanks for figuring out what it (likely) is.  It would indeed be awesome of the Moonfolk are coming back.
..."window.parent.tinyMCE.get('post_content').onLoad.dispatch();" contenteditable="true" />That image looked familiar to me yesterday, thanks for figuring out what it (likely) is.  It would indeed be awesome of the Moonfolk are coming back.



It would be pretty cool. Not sure how they fit in, but that image looked alot like a Soratami, especially compared to everything else in the set. I guess we'll have to wait a couple of weeks to find out...

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From a purely design perspective... why the heck does she have First Strike? She's effectively a 10/10 and they've said multiple times about how they won't put redundant combat abilities on fatties? Is it just to dodge deathtouch? That seems incredibly narrow. It really bothers me from an aesthetics perspective.
From a purely design perspective... why the heck does she have First Strike? She's effectively a 10/10 and they've said multiple times about how they won't put redundant combat abilities on fatties? Is it just to dodge deathtouch? That seems incredibly narrow. It really bothers me from an aesthetics perspective.



My guess is this is done for cycle purposes. Each of the 3 angels being:
- legendary flight leader
- flying
- 5/5
- XWW cost (the 3th one being Alabaster)
- 1 keyword ability from that color (hexproof for the green one, first strike for the red, ??? for the blue one)
- and then another ability (the 2 on these are easily grokked together as 1). 

Just like how Grave Titan got the relatively weak Deathtouch, this angel got the weak First Strike because her other ability is strong enough.
Finally something about AVR (other than the art, which remains consistently excellent in pretty much all sets these days) manages to appeal to me.  The cards I've seen are almost all "meh", but the PWG roars out the gate with an amazing bit of worldbuilding - the idea that Innistrad's version of Heaven is indoors.  The Lofts reads like it's based on James Stoddard's The High House , and is spectacularly cool.  I still don't plan to buy any product, but I might be forced to alter the plan (and pray I don't alter it any further) if they manage to toss in some cards that illustrate the Lofts.
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So it's essentially a 10/10 flying first strike for 4RWW... that also doubles all other damage dealt by you and halves all damage taken by you.
Oh.
Ok. 

REANIMATION TIMES! 
From a purely design perspective... why the heck does she have First Strike? She's effectively a 10/10 and they've said multiple times about how they won't put redundant combat abilities on fatties? Is it just to dodge deathtouch? That seems incredibly narrow. It really bothers me from an aesthetics perspective.



My guess is this is done for cycle purposes. Each of the 3 angels being:
- legendary flight leader
- flying
- 5/5
- XWW cost (the 3th one being Alabaster)
- 1 keyword ability from that color (hexproof for the green one, first strike for the red, ??? for the blue one)
- and then another ability (the 2 on these are easily grokked together as 1). 

Just like how Grave Titan got the relatively weak Deathtouch, this angel got the weak First Strike because her other ability is strong enough.



Hmmm, yeah that's a good point, especially with Grave Titan. You're probably right, although it still bugs me. What do you think will be on blue, Flash? The only other evergreens in blue I can think of are Flying, Islandwalk, Shroud, Hexproof... none of which really work. Perhaps a not keyword ability like unblockable?
I'm not quite sure how first strike is the "weak" ability when combined with the "double/halve your damage" effects. Gisela + pump = kills your flipped Test Subject before it can even hit back.

Yes, we get it.  You guys just lurve EDH for some reason.


Heheh - I don't even have an EDH deck. But every time it's preview season and I see unnamed pieces of art, large enough to admire the full detail, my inner Vorthos overwhelms my outer Spike...until I start cracking packs at the prerelease. :P

...gaping holes in the plot...


Yeah, WotC is still much better at building worlds than telling their stories, in my opinion; when cards (like Gisela) have good "character", though, it helps make up for that.

It just really does it for me.


For me, it was the lady with the whip and hat.
From a purely design perspective... why the heck does she have First Strike? She's effectively a 10/10 and they've said multiple times about how they won't put redundant combat abilities on fatties? Is it just to dodge deathtouch? That seems incredibly narrow. It really bothers me from an aesthetics perspective.


Aesthetics. Before the prerelease, many of us were pretty certain she was Borosian, and thus of course also had Double Strike (due to the dual swords). In the first second of reading her, we were disappointed. In the second second, we rejoiced: it turns out she's the godforsaken Double Strike Lord. All your Strikers now have God Strike: take Double Strike, recall the disadvantage that if they survive the first hit, the other guy gets to hit back. Then eliminate that problem. Lawdy, lawd! RW Strikers never sounded so close to actual existence!



It just really does it for me.

 
For me, it was the lady with the whip and hat.


Aha, that got me to thinking about how it seems like only girls survived.
From a purely design perspective... why the heck does she have First Strike? She's effectively a 10/10 and they've said multiple times about how they won't put redundant combat abilities on fatties? Is it just to dodge deathtouch? That seems incredibly narrow. It really bothers me from an aesthetics perspective.



well that would really help against first strike since u cant half that damage. plus it'll help to keep u alive from lots of red cards and some blacks. plus late game they might be out of doom blades and go for the throats and u just finish them with 1 attack
From a purely design perspective... why the heck does she have First Strike? She's effectively a 10/10 and they've said multiple times about how they won't put redundant combat abilities on fatties? Is it just to dodge deathtouch? That seems incredibly narrow. It really bothers me from an aesthetics perspective.


Aesthetics. Before the prerelease, many of us were pretty certain she was Borosian, and thus of course also had Double Strike (due to the dual swords). In the first second of reading her, we were disappointed. In the second second, we rejoiced: it turns out she's the godforsaken Double Strike Lord. All your Strikers now have God Strike: take Double Strike, recall the disadvantage that if they survive the first hit, the other guy gets to hit back. Then eliminate that problem. Lawdy, lawd! RW Strikers never sounded so close to actual existence!



She doesn't give First Strike to all the other creatures, only she has it. So while she has sort of a God Strike, your other creatures still have slow strike. They just now have tougher hides and sharper swords. I still stand by my original critique that giving her first strike is redundant. If her opponent can actually get 5 damage to land on her, then there are good odds they survived the first strike anyway.

Besides, her ability doesn't just pump your guys, in multiplayer she's pumping everybody's everything that's not hitting you or your guys. This means when one opponent hits another opponent. So, she's even less like a lord.
From a purely design perspective... why the heck does she have First Strike? She's effectively a 10/10 and they've said multiple times about how they won't put redundant combat abilities on fatties? Is it just to dodge deathtouch? That seems incredibly narrow. It really bothers me from an aesthetics perspective.



well that would really help against first strike since u cant half that damage. plus it'll help to keep u alive from lots of red cards and some blacks. plus late game they might be out of doom blades and go for the throats and u just finish them with 1 attack



I'm a little confused by your prepositions. Why does she need First strike?

I'm still waiting for this card:


Avacyn Mk. II, Angel of Preparedness

Legendary Creature - Angel
8/8
Flying, Vigilance
Avacyn Mk. II, Angel of Preparedness and other permanents you control are indestructible.
When Avacyn Mk. II, Angel of Preparedness leaves the battlefield, you may destroy target artifact or enchantment.
"I don't make the same mistake twice."
- Sorin Markov




I read that as "Avacyn, Angel of Prereleases" Laughing
A happy ending, for once.

Yeah, we've been in a few cycles now where "the world comes to an end; no really!" But not this time! Thank god :p

Of course, the flavor has gotten better and better on magic design, so there's not much to say there except how great it all is. I really like these articles, but somehow I don't think it comes close to conveying the true richness of the world. And if I had to make one criticism it's that, that we might never know all about the other worldbuilding. But otherwise really good stuff.

Here's the problem, though. In having a happy ending, they strip the plane of any interest for a potential future return. The thing that made Innistrad awesome was the unique horror vibe, the unique monster races in place of standard elves and goblins, and the art (of course). Now that humanity is apparently on course for wiping out all of the monster races entirely, there's nothing left to make the plane worth revisiting. The story is over. Unless they give a really good sequel hook, this "happy ending" means the end of this plane as we know it.
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I'm not quite sure how first strike is the "weak" ability when combined with the "double/halve your damage" effects. Gisela + pump = kills your flipped Test Subject before it can even hit back.



But how often will she battle with creatures larger than 9/9?
I'm not quite sure how first strike is the "weak" ability when combined with the "double/halve your damage" effects. Gisela + pump = kills your flipped Test Subject before it can even hit back.



But how often will she battle with creatures larger than 9/9?


Depends on what she fights in Ravnica?

I admit that First Strike on someone like that is not amazing but in the current format she helps guard herself against infect and depending on what has been happening in Ravnica there could be some very big creatures out there

If Bolas is turning his godlike eye on there then there could be some serious stuff going down 
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Better question, what does Nicol Bolas want with the lightbulb?
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Here's the problem, though. In having a happy ending, they strip the plane of any interest for a potential future return. The thing that made Innistrad awesome was the unique horror vibe, the unique monster races in place of standard elves and goblins, and the art (of course). Now that humanity is apparently on course for wiping out all of the monster races entirely, there's nothing left to make the plane worth revisiting. The story is over. Unless they give a really good sequel hook, this "happy ending" means the end of this plane as we know it.



It's easy to get planes into trouble Remember that Sorin supposedly left the plane in good hands in the first place, and then Avacyn got locked in the Helvault. Plus even with Avacyn they could never get rid of everything; and now there's no "containment unit" to lock the most powerful monsters.

That said, there are too many good threads running through Innistrad; I don't think this will be the end by any means. (Sorin is from Innistrad. So is Avacyn, who is the most powerful angel ever printed in Magic) But I think the designers have enough material/settings, that they didn't want to come back to this plane for awhile. I mean, Ravnica is up. No doubt we will see Alara and Shadowmoor again, if you're buying into the idea that a bad ending, equates to an eventual return. Mirrodin we'll see again as well, it's just too cool, the Phyrexians are still there, and everybody wants to see some artifacts every now and then. And then of course there's all the new settings that they want to do too. So yeah, I think they just wanted to have some closure on Innistrad, because they're going to be busy with other stuff for awhile. Not because they don't ever want to come back to it.
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Although I do assume you deliberately refer to them (DCI) as The Grand Imperial Convocation of Evil just for the purposes of making them sound like an ancient and terrible conspiracy.
Now, now. 1994 doesn't quite qualify as "ancient".
56734518 wrote:
Oh, it's a brilliant plan. You see, Bolas was travelling through shadowmoor, causing trouble, when he saw a Wickerbough Elder with its stylin' dead scarecrow hat. Now, Bolas being Bolas took the awesome hat and he put it on his head, but even with all his titanic powers of magic he couldn't make it fit. He grabbed some more scarecrows, but then a little kithkin girl asked if he was trying to build a toupee. "BY ALL THE POWERS IN THE MULTIVERSE!" he roared, "I WILL HAVE A HAT WORTHY OF MY GLORY." and so he went through his Dark Lore of Doom (tm) looking for something he could make into a hat that would look as stylish on him as a scarecrow does on a treefolk. He thought about the Phyrexians, but they were covered in goopy oil that would make his nonexistant hair greasy. He Tried out angels for a while but they didn't sit quite right. Then, he looked under "e" (because in the Elder Draconic alphabet, "e" for Eldrazi is right next to "h" for Hat) in his Dark Lore of Doom and saw depictions of the Eldrazi, and all their forms. "THIS SHALL BE MY HAT!" he declared, poking a picture of Emrakul, "AND WITH IT I WILL USHER IN A NEW AGE OF DARKNESS -- ER, I MEAN A NEW AGE OF FASHION!" And so Nicol Bolas masterminded the release of the Eldrazi.
57864098 wrote:
Rhox War Monk just flips pancakes, and if games have told us anything, it's that food = life.
56747598 wrote:
76973988 wrote:
This thread has gotten creepy. XP
Really? Really? The last couple days have been roughly every perverse fetish imaginable, but it only got "creepy" when speculation on Mother of Runes's mob affiliation came up?
76672808 wrote:
57864098 wrote:
57531048 wrote:
Nice mana base. Not really.
Yeah, really. If my deck was going to cost $1000+, I'd at least make it good.
99812049 wrote:
I like to think up what I consider clever names for my decks, only later to be laughed at by my wife. It kills me a little on the inside, but thats what marriage is about.
56816728 wrote:
56854588 wrote:
Of course, the best use [of tolaria west] is transmuting for the real Tolaria. ;)
Absolutely. I used to loose to my buddy's Banding deck for ages, it was then that I found out about Tolaria, and I was finally able win my first game.
70246459 wrote:
WOAH wait wait wait
56957928 wrote:
You know, being shallow and jusdgmental aside, "I later found out that Jon infiltrated his way into OKCupid dates with at least two other people"
56957928 wrote:
"I later found out that Jon infiltrated his way into OKCupid dates with at least two other people"
56957928 wrote:
Jon infiltrated his way into OKCupid dates
56957928 wrote:
OH MY GOD
109874309 wrote:
The only way I'd cast this card is into a bonfire.
82032421 wrote:
The short answer is that there's no rule barring annoying people from posting, but there a rule barring us from harassing them about it.
56747598 wrote:
Browbeat is a card that is an appropriate deck choice when there's no better idea available. "No better idea available" was pretty much the running theme of Odyssey era.
56874518 wrote:
Or perhaps it was a more straightforward comment indicating a wish for you to be bitten (Perhaps repeatedly) by a small yet highly venomous arachnid.
70246459 wrote:
58280208 wrote:
You're an idiot, and I'm in no mood for silliness.
57817638 wrote:
57145078 wrote:
You just... Vektor it.
That's the answer to everything.
70246459 wrote:
58347268 wrote:
I think the problem is that you don't exist.
This would sound great out of context!
56965458 wrote:
Modern is like playing a new tournament every time : you build a deck, you win with it, don't bother keeping it. Just build another, its key pieces will get banned.
57864098 wrote:
57309598 wrote:
I specifically remember posting a thread when I was just a witty bitty noob.
You make it sound like that's still not the case.
58325628 wrote:
Rap is what happens when the c from crap is taken away.
Doug Beyer:
But sometimes it's also challenging. Because sometimes OH MY GOD, WHAT THE HELL IS THIS THING?
141434757 wrote:
Flashforward five thousand years (Click for atmosphere) :
57927608 wrote:
to paraphrase Jeff Goldblum, Vektor finds a way.
58347268 wrote:
when in rome **** AND PILLAGE
143229641 wrote:
I always find it helpful when im angry to dress up in an owl costume and rub pennies all over my body in front of a full body mirror next to the window.
Dymecoar:
Playing Magic without Blue is like sleeping without any sheets or blankets. You can do it...but why?
Omega137:
Me: "I love the moment when a control deck stabilizes. It feels so... right." Omega137: "I like the life drop part until you get there, it's the MtG variant of bungee jumping"
Zigeif777:
Just do it like Yu-Gi-Oh or monkeys: throw all the crap you got at them and hope it works or else the by-standers (or opponents) just get dirty and pissed.
57471038 wrote:
58258708 wrote:
It's true that Alpha and Beta didn't contain any cards like Tarmogoyf, Darksteel Colossus, or Platinum Angel. It just contained weak, insignificant cards like Black Lotus, Mox Sapphire, and Time Walk.
Normally it's difficult to pick up on your jokes/sarcasm. But this one's pretty much out there. Good progress. You have moved up to Humanoid. You'll be Human in no time.
91893448 wrote:
94618431 wrote:
I didn't know Samurai were known to be able to cut down whole armies...
They can when they're using lightsabers!
57129358 wrote:
97980259 wrote:
My wife brought home a baby black squirrel they found on a horse track and cared for it for a few days. We named it Grixis, but it died.
Unearth it!
70246459 wrote:
[/spoiler] And I'm on Magic Arcana. How about you? Oh, by the way, I'm also on From the Lab now. Twice, actually. And now with my own submited decklist!
She doesn't give First Strike to all the other creatures, only she has it. So while she has sort of a God Strike, your other creatures still have slow strike.


Yeah, man, that's why it's aesthetics. Angels have a lot of them. It's way too late to hop on that complaint train, angels have been hitting tacks of cool, flavorful abilities that are irrelevant most of the time for a long time. This is not a new thing.

Nor is it irrelevant, either. Of course she doesn't give them First Strike, that's not the point of the lord. That's like saying the Goblin Lord turns all your creatures into Goblins. You play a Goblin Lord with Goblins, you play a Strike Lord with Strikers, ya know what I'm saying? It's bonkers how good First Strike is with it and how it turns trades into chumps. She gives all First/Double Strikers God Strike.

Your lord sometimes has the pump it gives, such as Haste, Deathtouch, or drain, and of course this angel being as massive she is is going to as well; you need to tack on a lot for that kind of mana; she's still an angel, and is stupid good in her own right, unlike normal cheap, aggro lords. Angels don't play that cheap way (An angel lord would never be 3 CMC).

But yeah, it's aesthetics. It's Vorthosian. Me and the other Vorthoses looked at her and knew immediately that she had Double Strike (which turned out to be God Strike), because we saw the Borosian influence, and the dual weapons tipped us off due to how prevalent it rings true in past artwork. You're looking at it as Melvin-- you see wasted space of text that doesn't matter much or contribute to many interesting interactions. Vorthos sees it different; you can spot them when they see all the 7s on Griselbrand and complain about his 8 CMC. It's just a necessary feel of the card that would be missing without First Strike.
Hmm... so they say we're heading back to Ravnica....

I hear that and I see a new Boros Angel and a new Selesnya Angel... 
Here's the problem, though. In having a happy ending, they strip the plane of any interest for a potential future return. The thing that made Innistrad awesome was the unique horror vibe, the unique monster races in place of standard elves and goblins, and the art (of course). Now that humanity is apparently on course for wiping out all of the monster races entirely, there's nothing left to make the plane worth revisiting. The story is over. Unless they give a really good sequel hook, this "happy ending" means the end of this plane as we know it.



It's easy to get planes into trouble Remember that Sorin supposedly left the plane in good hands in the first place, and then Avacyn got locked in the Helvault. Plus even with Avacyn they could never get rid of everything; and now there's no "containment unit" to lock the most powerful monsters.

That said, there are too many good threads running through Innistrad; I don't think this will be the end by any means. (Sorin is from Innistrad. So is Avacyn, who is the most powerful angel ever printed in Magic) But I think the designers have enough material/settings, that they didn't want to come back to this plane for awhile. I mean, Ravnica is up. No doubt we will see Alara and Shadowmoor again, if you're buying into the idea that a bad ending, equates to an eventual return. Mirrodin we'll see again as well, it's just too cool, the Phyrexians are still there, and everybody wants to see some artifacts every now and then. And then of course there's all the new settings that they want to do too. So yeah, I think they just wanted to have some closure on Innistrad, because they're going to be busy with other stuff for awhile. Not because they don't ever want to come back to it.

It does mean that Innistrad lost its identity of being the horror-world, and giving it the exact same problem again would be super lame.

It bothers me that they have condensed the story down so much and it still has internal inconsistencies.

if we're drooling over art in this thread, then I would feel amiss if no one mentioned Jason Chan's lady-cathar with the awesome weapon and the cool hat.
Here's the problem, though. In having a happy ending, they strip the plane of any interest for a potential future return. The thing that made Innistrad awesome was the unique horror vibe, the unique monster races in place of standard elves and goblins, and the art (of course). Now that humanity is apparently on course for wiping out all of the monster races entirely, there's nothing left to make the plane worth revisiting. The story is over. Unless they give a really good sequel hook, this "happy ending" means the end of this plane as we know it.



I don't know, I think the overwhelming advantage that the humans are getting is only temporary, due to the monsters overextending. They went for the knockout blow and humanity essentially ducked and kneed them in the groin. The demons et al will back off, lick their wounds, then come back as strong as before.

As for sequel hooks, I think we could have a couple:
-The Skirsdag cult still has members in the Innistrad church. We could see a takeover from within if one of them becomes the Lunarch.
-Depending on what exactly Sorin has been doing all this time while he's been back, we could see Edgar Markov become a major antagonist in the future.

I don't know. I think if we do come back, it won't be for quite a few years.
From a purely design perspective... why the heck does she have First Strike? She's effectively a 10/10 and they've said multiple times about how they won't put redundant combat abilities on fatties? Is it just to dodge deathtouch? That seems incredibly narrow. It really bothers me from an aesthetics perspective.



My guess is this is done for cycle purposes. Each of the 3 angels being:
- legendary flight leader
- flying
- 5/5
- XWW cost (the 3th one being Alabaster)
- 1 keyword ability from that color (hexproof for the green one, first strike for the red, ??? for the blue one)
- and then another ability (the 2 on these are easily grokked together as 1). 

Just like how Grave Titan got the relatively weak Deathtouch, this angel got the weak First Strike because her other ability is strong enough.



Hmmm, yeah that's a good point, especially with Grave Titan. You're probably right, although it still bugs me. What do you think will be on blue, Flash? The only other evergreens in blue I can think of are Flying, Islandwalk, Shroud, Hexproof... none of which really work. Perhaps a not keyword ability like unblockable?



So apparantly the answer is "vigilance". Which is a bit weird, as that isn't in blue, but secondary in green. However, all 3 abilities (vigilance, first strike, hexproof) are also white (although I'm not sure we have written confirmation on hexproof, but Angelic OVerseer). 
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