I'll be going Gruul at the prerelease

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Gruul looks really versatile and I love the fact that the creatures are all doubling as combat tricks.

Check out that Wrecking Ogre!

+3+3 and double strike (bloodrush can't be countered either)

I swing with my 1/1 and deal you 8 damage!!

I swing with my 3/3 and deal 12 damage!

People are also hating on Gruul Charm but I actually like it.
bulletd Guidelines: 5.0: I will take this card no matter what. Creature 1 or playable 1 or hate 1.Archangel of Thune 4.5: Bomb and splashable. Creature 1-2, playable 1-2, removal 1. Jace, Memory Adept 4.0: Excellent first pick first pack, will sway me into same colors. Creatures 1-4, removal 1. Haunted Plate Mail 3.5: Excellent first pack pick two, will confirm colors or possibly sway into second color. Doom Blade 3.0: Good in-color addition, or splashable removal/creature. Creatures 3-9, removal 1-3. wall of Frost 2.5: Solid pick in-color; creatures 5-12, removal 3-5. Dark Favor 2.0: Creatures 10-16; removal 6-7. Elvish Mystic 1.5: My 23rd or 22nd card, depending on removal. Act of Treason 1.0: 23rd card if I don't maindeck an additional land. Lay of the Land 0.5: This card will sometimes be sideboarded in. Brave the Elements 0.0: I will shred this card for counters. Darksteel Forge
I also really like Gruul, but I'm considering going Boros splash Gruul. The bloodrush almost never requires GG. 

I just saw some of the new spoilers...

Ripscale Predator Creature - Lizard 6/5 - 4RR
Ripscale Predator can't be blocked except by two or more creatures.

+  

Alpha Authority Enchantment - Aura - 1G
Enchant creature Enchanted creature has hexproof and can't be blocked by more than one creature.

Is that game (a 6/5 hexproof/unblockable)? Surprised


Of course, you can still remove the aura... but you better have an immediate answer...  
The fact that we can just fill our deck up with creatures that double as instant speed uncounterable combat effects is going to be really good for draft. This guild might get over-drafted early on.

I think Boros might be getting less notice than it should. I think it might be pretty good.

Dimir seems erratic, but could mill you to death out of nowhere.
bulletd Guidelines: 5.0: I will take this card no matter what. Creature 1 or playable 1 or hate 1.Archangel of Thune 4.5: Bomb and splashable. Creature 1-2, playable 1-2, removal 1. Jace, Memory Adept 4.0: Excellent first pick first pack, will sway me into same colors. Creatures 1-4, removal 1. Haunted Plate Mail 3.5: Excellent first pack pick two, will confirm colors or possibly sway into second color. Doom Blade 3.0: Good in-color addition, or splashable removal/creature. Creatures 3-9, removal 1-3. wall of Frost 2.5: Solid pick in-color; creatures 5-12, removal 3-5. Dark Favor 2.0: Creatures 10-16; removal 6-7. Elvish Mystic 1.5: My 23rd or 22nd card, depending on removal. Act of Treason 1.0: 23rd card if I don't maindeck an additional land. Lay of the Land 0.5: This card will sometimes be sideboarded in. Brave the Elements 0.0: I will shred this card for counters. Darksteel Forge
100% agreed this time.  

Gruul is going to have EVERYONE scared of the attack phase if the attacker has any cards in hand and untapped mana.  Anything from +3/2 for G to +1/2 and death touch all the way up to +9/9 and trample for 5GG, with a LOT of powerful effects (like the guaranteed bramblehulk if you pick gruul) at the 3cc level for bloodrush.

It seemed to me that boros has TONS of killer 2 and 3 drops, and even their 1 drop guys trade WAY up once battalion comes online  (and how hard is it going to be to get 3 creatures out in boros?).  Looks to be a very strong guild to me.  

Dimir is going to be VERY under rated for sure....but I will agree, unless you can use a copy effect/steal effect, most of the guild cards with cipher are very expensive, and I don't think it'll hold up against a boros/gruul aggro deck.  Watch out for someone smart enough to get some late picked walls/gates and cheap counter magic to pull a mill win out of their butt.  

Orzhov looks to be very promising as well.  I think they'll be heavily drafted in the begining, and then interest will fade (who doesn't want the guild leader.....WOW!).  Extort looks to be amazingly powerful, and the guild has access to tons of lifegain, tons of removal, and extort cards don't seem to be overpriced for the bodies they are on, which can get nuts fast.  Just 2 extort cards can create a 4 point life swing for 2 mana EACH time you play any other spell in your deck.  Life loss is also not counterable....and the life gain will pad you against the aggro decks until you find your kill cards, or a fatty.  Should be strong.  

Simic is the mixed bag to me.  Many over priced evolve cards are going to cause simic to be too slow to compete with the aggro guilds, and they have no lifegain to pad that loss of speed like orhoz.  I can see an aggro version with all their 3/1 fliers though with a splash for either white or black.  I don't like all the extra moving effects of +1/1 counters as I'd want to put out a new creature, or cast a spell....but that could just be my personal bias.  I think Simic will be the most OVER rated of all the guilds.

I'll be rocking Gruul come Friday though.  When it comes right down to it....you can't go wrong with giant creatures that f*** with combat math in a limited environment.  You'll be able to bluff all kinds of damage through once someone gets on the wrong end of a 3-for-1 trade because of bloodrush, and they get scared to engage you.  I just wish there was more BURN in this set....hardly anything at all for the final push.  Gonna have to rely on bluffs and trample to finish.   
 You'll be able to bluff all kinds of damage through once someone gets on the wrong end of a 3-for-1 trade because of bloodrush, and they get scared to engage you.

Nope.
Bloodrush only works on attacking creatures. No bad surprises from Gruul when it's your turn to attack. 

Ripscale Predator Creature - Lizard 6/5 - 4RR
Ripscale Predator can't be blocked except by two or more creatures.

+  

Alpha Authority Enchantment - Aura - 1G
Enchant creature Enchanted creature has hexproof and can't be blocked by more than one creature.

Is that game (a 6/5 hexproof/unblockable)? Surprised



I believe it is.

I think Gruul looks deceptive. It might  be really good but I'm currently leaning towards not liking it. Now, Orzhov and Dimir on the other hand...

Or Boros...

I think everyone will want to be Simic - but it looks pretty sweet, too, so who can blame them?
Preparing for the M14 Prerelease - New article up! IN THE TANK - my very own blog for rambling about Magic!
I signed up as Dimir for my big pre-release on Saturday.  U/B is always my favorite color combination for limited, but I'm struggling with them here.  I think really good players will be able to come up with something good.  Don't think I'm there.

If I do a second 4-RND event on Sunday I'll likely choose Boros, because that is more my style, and most of my constructed stuff is heading in that direction.

I actually dislike the whole, select your guild beforehand.  I prefer the old, here's six packs, let's see what you get.

I suppose it's just one pack, but still.
Up front I think Gruul looks like it is probably the best in a limited environment. Lots of efficiently costed beaters that double as tricks. I'm excited to see this format develop however, and don't think Gruul will end up being quite as dominant as I am expecting it to be. Green seems really good in general.

The prerelease for me is all about fun though and even though I think Gruul is the best positioned to win, it is my least favorite color combo to play so I will be going Orzhov which is one of my favorite. 
I was expecting/hoping for more Unsummon effects to deal with Bloodrush.  I think I noticed one or two, but that was about it.
I've marked my preference as Gruul, Simic, and Boros for the pre-release, but due to limited availability my local gaming store is doing some sort of random selection for players. 

I found Carmen Sandiego before you were born unless you're Zlehtnoba.

I would probably sign up as Dimir if I could afford it.
But I cannot.
So I guess I'm waiting for the launch =(
i can only say you this to help you
GRUUL GRUUL GRUUUUL!!!!!!!!!!

(going gruul also, but im gonna splash simic or boros because i know that when i open my boosters there is not gonna be a lot of red and green) 
Someone, somewhere, is going to insta-lose to an unblocked ruination worm (common 7/6) bloodrushed by wrecking ogre (+3/3 and double strike).

That said, cards like aetherize, smite, totally lost, even rapid hybridization, make me kinda nervous to bloodrush. It will have to be careful, calculated, to avoid 2-for-1's.

I think I would have the most fun playing Simic but I'm curious to see how strong Boros might be.
 You'll be able to bluff all kinds of damage through once someone gets on the wrong end of a 3-for-1 trade because of bloodrush, and they get scared to engage you.

Nope.
Bloodrush only works on attacking creatures. No bad surprises from Gruul when it's your turn to attack. 




Does it say that you can only play as a sorcery? I don't think it could function like that....so its basically the same as an instant speed giant growth.  How is this NOT a giant suprise for the defender?


I think the strongest choice is going to be gruul with a blue splash for card draw (to keep the heat on) or black for even more creature kill and zombify-type effects
 You'll be able to bluff all kinds of damage through once someone gets on the wrong end of a 3-for-1 trade because of bloodrush, and they get scared to engage you.

Nope.
Bloodrush only works on attacking creatures. No bad surprises from Gruul when it's your turn to attack. 




Does it say that you can only play as a sorcery? I don't think it could function like that....so its basically the same as an instant speed giant growth.  How is this NOT a giant suprise for the defender?



Bloodrush specifically says "Target attacking creature gets...".
I'm going to spend most of today going over the spoiler in detail, but I'm currently leaning towards Dimir or possibly Orzhov.
Preparing for the M14 Prerelease - New article up! IN THE TANK - my very own blog for rambling about Magic!
I'm going to spend most of today going over the spoiler in detail, but I'm currently leaning towards Dimir or possibly Orzhov.

If you could share your thoughts on that, I am really interested.

So far, I have the feeling that, when playing Dimir (facing Gruul or Boros), by the time you encrypt your first "evasive" creature, you'll be either dead or below 5 Life Point. 
I have a hard time seeing it do anything relevant quickly enough.
I'm probably wrong.
I'm going Simic - I just love Evolve and reckon that it could turn into a fun mechanic.  Plus may well be my favourite colour combination of all time.
My favorite card right now is Wasteland Viper. I think this card is just really awesome. I can't make any prerelease events but hopefully I'll get to throw down with this guy sometime.
I really, really think Orzhov is being undervalued right now, and will see more play as the set matures. Extort is an amazing win-con: as long as you're casting spells you're forcing your opponent to lose life while you gain life. That's a hard thing to race, you basically only fall behind when you stop casting spells. Combine it with a Boros splash, and you have plenty of burn and efficiently-costed creatures to trigger extort. It'll play like azorius fliers, but instead of an attack phase you're building out your board.

I found Carmen Sandiego before you were born unless you're Zlehtnoba.

As the only person who's playtested the format, I'll give my insights:

1:  hands of binding is really the only "good" common cipher card.  The draw spell is playable, but it's bad tempo, and dimir seems pretty tempo-y.
2:  Dimir seems best when paired with orzhov, because orzhov appreciates the evasion of dimir that lets them sneak in damage through the board stalls that orzhov loves to create, and dimir appreciates the ability of orzhov blockers and extorters to let you not die, as well as the fact that orzhov will let you get enough playables by virtue of not having stupid mill jank an overcosted cipher cards.
3:  In our testing, orzhov was the most commonly played guild, with the next being either boros or simic, I don't remember which.  I expect that with the increased pool of the colors of your choice that comes from guild packs, it would be easier to build a consistent 2 color aggro deck though.

Why does everyone think I'm phantom lancer? QFT:

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139359831 wrote:
I hope all this helps you to see things in a greater light—and understand that Magic: the Gathering was really created by extraterrestials using Richard Garfield as a medium. The game itself reflects the socio-psycho realtivity between living beings, and the science that takes precedence over them—to define reality for them all (like telekinesis, weather, scientific reaction, phenomenon, ingenuity, how the brain works, etc.). I'd also bet there is an entity floating thousands of miles above us, looking down on the current state of game, shaking its fist like... "Wtf are you doing?! You're getting it all screwed up!". Awkward—to be evolved, and yet still subject to the ladder that is the concepts of the game. In this case, misconception, corruption, and deception. With the realities of each color becoming distorted (through oblivious designers), leading the game to reflect a false state of reality that warps the understanding that other people have about those things. For example, people thinking that white could be anything except pure good. This shouldn't be too far off though, I mean...Magic is designed based on reality after all, so that entity (those entities) should be subject to those things. Anyways, I guess when you're busy doing space stuff you can't always be around to ensure quality control. It's no wonder they choose Garfield, they're so much alike; that's exactly what happened to him and Magic.
166199665 wrote:
omg snortng so much febbdelicious /intocixated in rl
My thoughts currently are as follows (very briefly) - I am 2,100 words into my article:
Boros is looking like a super streamlined, aggressive deck is its plan A. This is rarely going to come together in Sealed even with the help of a guild pack, but when it does, it will be devastating. Its prerelease card helps out a lot of decks that try to be aggressive like this but stumble slightly, enabling an alpha strike or simply burning an opponent out once it hits the table.
Orzhov is looking very defensive and controlling, but it has a slight dimension of aggressive fliers that could turn the "slow bleed" into a decidedly unfair race. If you are playing for the long game, its discard spells are not as bad as they look (the Confessor and the Mind Rot+Lifegain for 4), but its slightly faster edition will probably really like Kingpin's Pets. The prerelease cards plays well into this and if it can ever survive attacking, you should have the game locked down.
Simic looks very powerful, if not as fast as the early previews would have us believe. Its prerelease card is a crucial card which makes a lot of its other cards (mostly those that do shenanigans with counters) better. I like the guild but I imagine a lot of people will play it. It probably has the most "over-the-top" endgame but takes the longest getting there safely, which makes early defensive plays with Evolve high-priority.
Dimir looks like another controlling, grindy deck, looking to survive the early game and establish control of the early game until it eventually finds a way to close out the game, either through milling or damage. Its prerelease card helps on both of these axes and can quickly grow out of hand while simultaneously requiring no further investment from you (if it eats a couple of chumpers before dying, you should still have gotten way ahead during that time). It is worth noting that Dimir endgames are probably going to be more potent than Orzhov ones (if the Dimir player can survive).
Gruul is scary. Its instant-speed Prey Upon is a key card for getting mileage out of Bloodrush (fight a lonely blocker before blocks) and a high creature density will make it work well with borrowed Boros and Simic cards. Its prerelease card is probably actually going to be best against experienced players who will realize that it is in your deck and will have to try and play around it. Playing a game that goes long against a Gruul without ever being dead to Rubblehulk's Bloodrush ability is going to be borderline impossible. Do not underestimate Gruul players or Bloodrush, though having lots of (instant-speed) removal will reward you for making them try to "get you".

I plan on playing Dimir in my first prerelease (the big midnight one) and Gruul in the second one (a smaller one where I am also judging and would like to finish my games faster - plus, less experienced players make combat tricks better).

Any questions so far? I hope my article will be done tonight and go up during the next couple of days.
Preparing for the M14 Prerelease - New article up! IN THE TANK - my very own blog for rambling about Magic!
Lobster you mentioned just a few posts before that you have some sort of reservations against Gruul. I've gotta ask what they are specifically because from my point of view this guild looks like a limited wetdream.
bulletd Guidelines: 5.0: I will take this card no matter what. Creature 1 or playable 1 or hate 1.Archangel of Thune 4.5: Bomb and splashable. Creature 1-2, playable 1-2, removal 1. Jace, Memory Adept 4.0: Excellent first pick first pack, will sway me into same colors. Creatures 1-4, removal 1. Haunted Plate Mail 3.5: Excellent first pack pick two, will confirm colors or possibly sway into second color. Doom Blade 3.0: Good in-color addition, or splashable removal/creature. Creatures 3-9, removal 1-3. wall of Frost 2.5: Solid pick in-color; creatures 5-12, removal 3-5. Dark Favor 2.0: Creatures 10-16; removal 6-7. Elvish Mystic 1.5: My 23rd or 22nd card, depending on removal. Act of Treason 1.0: 23rd card if I don't maindeck an additional land. Lay of the Land 0.5: This card will sometimes be sideboarded in. Brave the Elements 0.0: I will shred this card for counters. Darksteel Forge
Lobster you mentioned just a few posts before that you have some sort of reservations against Gruul. I've gotta ask what they are specifically because from my point of view this guild looks like a limited wetdream.



I feel like Gruul is the guild where you can extract the least value from your skill as a player. It is a "dumb" guild. I know that sounds silly, but its playstyle is extremely straightforward and if it (for some reason or another) does not seem to work out, you'll be left flailing. Relying on being able to "resolve" Bloodrush tricks also makes you extremely vulnerable to instants that bounce or remove your permanents. After having taken another look at the spoiler, Boros feels much the same way - enough that I think I prefer Gruul over Boros for my second prerelease.
Preparing for the M14 Prerelease - New article up! IN THE TANK - my very own blog for rambling about Magic!
I am going Gruul at the pre release. G/R is one of my favorite color combos and the Gruul gameplan looks like alot of fun.

That being said now that the set has been spoiled fully, I think Orzhov looks to be the best guild. It has alot of good commons, and uncommons as well as removal. It also has a decent amount of efficient fliers and unblockables. That coupled with extort life gain I think will be the best strat.

I think gruul will be vulnerable to flying strategies as well as being 2 for 1 on bloodrush if they have removal or bounce. 

Boros and simic look ok with boros having a leg up.

Dimir looks to be suprisingly deadly, and a little unreliable, imo. I think it will be a sleeper and mill people out of nowhere. It also has the best pre release card, it just grows bigger and puts the opponent on a short clock for damage or being milled.
Lobster you mentioned just a few posts before that you have some sort of reservations against Gruul. I've gotta ask what they are specifically because from my point of view this guild looks like a limited wetdream.



I feel like Gruul is the guild where you can extract the least value from your skill as a player. It is a "dumb" guild. I know that sounds silly, but its playstyle is extremely straightforward and if it (for some reason or another) does not seem to work out, you'll be left flailing. Relying on being able to "resolve" Bloodrush tricks also makes you extremely vulnerable to instants that bounce or remove your permanents. After having taken another look at the spoiler, Boros feels much the same way - enough that I think I prefer Gruul over Boros for my second prerelease.


Yes, it takes more skill to win a fight with an airsoft rifle than a heat seeking missile launcher, but give me the heat seeking missile launcher any day.  And Dimir really is an airsoft rifle:  yes, its strength is very skill dependent, but that doesn't change the fact that even if you play it perfectly, it's still pretty damn weak.  As for bloodrush being vulnerable to instants, there's a simple solution to that:  don't play bloodrush into open mana.  You're an aggro deck, they have to deal with your beats quickly even without bloodrush, they can't afford to leave mana open every turn.  If they drop a blocker, bloodrush to eat it.  If they don't drop a blocker, just beat down.  If they wait until they have enough mana to drop a blocker and leave enough mana up for their trick, just alpha strike, because if they haven't done anything up until that point, you can just aggro them out through their blocker.  They don't have infinite life.

Why does everyone think I'm phantom lancer? QFT:

Show
139359831 wrote:
I hope all this helps you to see things in a greater light—and understand that Magic: the Gathering was really created by extraterrestials using Richard Garfield as a medium. The game itself reflects the socio-psycho realtivity between living beings, and the science that takes precedence over them—to define reality for them all (like telekinesis, weather, scientific reaction, phenomenon, ingenuity, how the brain works, etc.). I'd also bet there is an entity floating thousands of miles above us, looking down on the current state of game, shaking its fist like... "Wtf are you doing?! You're getting it all screwed up!". Awkward—to be evolved, and yet still subject to the ladder that is the concepts of the game. In this case, misconception, corruption, and deception. With the realities of each color becoming distorted (through oblivious designers), leading the game to reflect a false state of reality that warps the understanding that other people have about those things. For example, people thinking that white could be anything except pure good. This shouldn't be too far off though, I mean...Magic is designed based on reality after all, so that entity (those entities) should be subject to those things. Anyways, I guess when you're busy doing space stuff you can't always be around to ensure quality control. It's no wonder they choose Garfield, they're so much alike; that's exactly what happened to him and Magic.
166199665 wrote:
omg snortng so much febbdelicious /intocixated in rl
Gruul does seem pretty strong for the pre-release.  Every attempt at double blocking them could just end up in disaster.
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Lobster you mentioned just a few posts before that you have some sort of reservations against Gruul. I've gotta ask what they are specifically because from my point of view this guild looks like a limited wetdream.



I feel like Gruul is the guild where you can extract the least value from your skill as a player. It is a "dumb" guild. I know that sounds silly, but its playstyle is extremely straightforward and if it (for some reason or another) does not seem to work out, you'll be left flailing. Relying on being able to "resolve" Bloodrush tricks also makes you extremely vulnerable to instants that bounce or remove your permanents. After having taken another look at the spoiler, Boros feels much the same way - enough that I think I prefer Gruul over Boros for my second prerelease.



Yes, it takes more skill to win a fight with an airsoft rifle than a heat seeking missile launcher, but give me the heat seeking missile launcher any day.  And Dimir really is an airsoft rifle:  yes, its strength is very skill dependent, but that doesn't change the fact that even if you play it perfectly, it's still pretty damn weak.  As for bloodrush being vulnerable to instants, there's a simple solution to that:  don't play bloodrush into open mana.  You're an aggro deck, they have to deal with your beats quickly even without bloodrush, they can't afford to leave mana open every turn.  If they drop a blocker, bloodrush to eat it.  If they don't drop a blocker, just beat down.  If they wait until they have enough mana to drop a blocker and leave enough mana up for their trick, just alpha strike, because if they haven't done anything up until that point, you can just aggro them out through their blocker.  They don't have infinite life.



I disagree to an extent with Lobster's analysis of Gruul. With so many decisions to manage it will have a very high skillcap. The playstyle is no more straightforward than other guilds--do you play the creature or wait to use it's bloodrush ability? Playing the creature nets you more damage in the long-term, while bloodrush can take out a blocker or give you the reach you need to win. Are they representing one of the twenty-something combat tricks in this set? Do you play the second bloodrush effect for the win, risking a blowout? Bad players will get 2, 3-for-one'd often if they blindly use bloodrush.

Dimir on the other hand seems to be the most mindless. Play unblockable creature(s), and start swinging. Use cipher cards ASAP or else they lose potential value every turn. You still get an effect even if you encoded creature never connects. Also don't like that 6 of the cipher cards are 4CMC. That said, bad players will not necessarily succeed with Dimir because it can't hope to race Gruul/Boros in most cases. It's probably the Izzet of the set--can be really good with the right card pool (and pilot), but outright terrible if you don't get your enablers or bombs. 

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I'm also going with Gruul at the prerelease. I'm looking for some opinions on when to use bloodrush. It's a mechanic that I'm sure a lot of people are going to make mistakes with at the prerelease. I don't want to be one of them. I'm worried that I won't use bloodrush when I should. I'm worried that I'll play it too conservatively and only use it when it has a large benefit for me such as making a small attacking creature blocked by a bigger creature survive and destroy the other creature. Or using bloodrush to force in the last few points of damage to reduce my opponent to 0 life. I'm worried about missing the more subtle, less obvious times to use bloodrush. Can I get some opinions/advice on when you want to use bloodrush and when you don't?

"This list much made Niche barf a lil' in his mouth, so I can be proud of that." -rstnme

I'm also going with Gruul at the prerelease. I'm looking for some opinions on when to use bloodrush. It's a mechanic that I'm sure a lot of people are going to make mistakes with at the prerelease. I don't want to be one of them. I'm worried that I won't use bloodrush when I should. I'm worried that I'll play it too conservatively and only use it when it has a large benefit for me such as making a small attacking creature blocked by a bigger creature survive and destroy the other creature. Or using bloodrush to force in the last few points of damage to reduce my opponent to 0 life. I'm worried about missing the more subtle, less obvious times to use bloodrush. Can I get some opinions/advice on when you want to use bloodrush and when you don't?



I did a rough job of analyzing the removal and some other aspects of the format here.

Basically, be mindful of what cards your opponent is representing, based on their hand and untapped land. Be sure to note what combat tricks and removal they have when and if you get a peek at what they have in their deck (such as during and after games).  You likely don't want to bloodrush into combat tricks. If you feel really unsure about bloodrush, you can always just play the creature--and you should do that often, depending on the creature. There are at least two Auras that make bloodrushing better in some cases (Hexproof and 1 blocker, and +3/+0 and 2+ blockers), though also be mindful of losing your enchanted creatures to removal.

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I actually think Gruul will be the most skill-testing of the mechanics. It's trading long-term (a body) for short-term (+P/+T). Cipher will be played like an Aura with a CiP effect and granting a sabotage effect. Extort should be ignored until the game is controlled. Evolve rewards having a good curve. There's little reason not to overextend in limited. Without Sweepers, battalion should only affect the combat step.
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Like EyeHunter said, without a prevelance of sweepers in limited, you probably don't have to worry about overextending. So if I were playing Gruul, I think the majority of the time I am going to go to combat and usually swing with my creatures that I would normally swing with sans tricks. If they decide to play a trick on a blocker then I can respond with a bloodrush accordingly, if they don't I'm either getting in damage or probably coming out ahead on the board if I am making the correct attacks. Post combat I can then either play out a creature I was holding with bloodrush if it will better suit me on the board, which I expect to usually be the case, or if it won't effect the board, I hold it and do the same thing next turn.

Obviously there is more to it than that, like if the opponent is tapped out or if considering life totals, but that's the gist of my take on it.
I'm also going with Gruul at the prerelease. I'm looking for some opinions on when to use bloodrush. It's a mechanic that I'm sure a lot of people are going to make mistakes with at the prerelease. I don't want to be one of them. I'm worried that I won't use bloodrush when I should. I'm worried that I'll play it too conservatively and only use it when it has a large benefit for me such as making a small attacking creature blocked by a bigger creature survive and destroy the other creature. Or using bloodrush to force in the last few points of damage to reduce my opponent to 0 life. I'm worried about missing the more subtle, less obvious times to use bloodrush. Can I get some opinions/advice on when you want to use bloodrush and when you don't?



the answer to this question, of course, is highlt situational. It you're going against a guild without any bounce/counter magic than it's going to be a little easier to consider. For the most part, the threat is deadlier than the execution. Meaning you always want cards in your hand as a Gruul player to make your opponent think about bloodrush. But the problem for your opponent is that he'll have no clue which one might be in your hand. In RTR I got pretty good at figuring out if my opponent had Swift Justice in hand or not.

Often you're going to want to attack before you play your other spells so that your open mana always threatens to bloodrush.

Good questions! If you give some hypotheticals we could probably help you even more.

bulletd Guidelines: 5.0: I will take this card no matter what. Creature 1 or playable 1 or hate 1.Archangel of Thune 4.5: Bomb and splashable. Creature 1-2, playable 1-2, removal 1. Jace, Memory Adept 4.0: Excellent first pick first pack, will sway me into same colors. Creatures 1-4, removal 1. Haunted Plate Mail 3.5: Excellent first pack pick two, will confirm colors or possibly sway into second color. Doom Blade 3.0: Good in-color addition, or splashable removal/creature. Creatures 3-9, removal 1-3. wall of Frost 2.5: Solid pick in-color; creatures 5-12, removal 3-5. Dark Favor 2.0: Creatures 10-16; removal 6-7. Elvish Mystic 1.5: My 23rd or 22nd card, depending on removal. Act of Treason 1.0: 23rd card if I don't maindeck an additional land. Lay of the Land 0.5: This card will sometimes be sideboarded in. Brave the Elements 0.0: I will shred this card for counters. Darksteel Forge
I actually think Gruul will be the most skill-testing of the mechanics. It's trading long-term (a body) for short-term (+P/+T). Cipher will be played like an Aura with a CiP effect and granting a sabotage effect. Extort should be ignored until the game is controlled. Evolve rewards having a good curve. There's little reason not to overextend in limited. Without Sweepers, battalion should only affect the combat step.



I agree with several of the posters here. I don't think Gruul is really that easy to predict yet. Bloodrush isn't straight-forward in any sense that I can perceive. I can already see so many situations where you should play the creature over the bloodrush mechanic. It's going to take real skill to maximize your cards in Gruul as opposd to say Dimir where people are going to just try to get their cihper cards on evasive creatures as quickly as possible and start swinging for benefit.

Orzhov I like but it seems quite mindless. Survive till you can start activating extort.
bulletd Guidelines: 5.0: I will take this card no matter what. Creature 1 or playable 1 or hate 1.Archangel of Thune 4.5: Bomb and splashable. Creature 1-2, playable 1-2, removal 1. Jace, Memory Adept 4.0: Excellent first pick first pack, will sway me into same colors. Creatures 1-4, removal 1. Haunted Plate Mail 3.5: Excellent first pack pick two, will confirm colors or possibly sway into second color. Doom Blade 3.0: Good in-color addition, or splashable removal/creature. Creatures 3-9, removal 1-3. wall of Frost 2.5: Solid pick in-color; creatures 5-12, removal 3-5. Dark Favor 2.0: Creatures 10-16; removal 6-7. Elvish Mystic 1.5: My 23rd or 22nd card, depending on removal. Act of Treason 1.0: 23rd card if I don't maindeck an additional land. Lay of the Land 0.5: This card will sometimes be sideboarded in. Brave the Elements 0.0: I will shred this card for counters. Darksteel Forge
Basically I'm thinking of situations where your creature is about the same size as your opponent's blocker and will trade in battle. How do you decide if you should bloodrush to save the creature? I'm thinking size of the creatures is a factor. You probably don't want to use a big bloodrusher like Zhur-taa Swine to save a smaller creature. But the decison gets harder when the creatures are more similar in size say Slaugterhorn and Viashino Shanktail. Do you give up your 3/1 first striker that you could cast to save a 3/2 in combat? These decisions are a little bit harder than with a normal combat trick such as Giant Growth.

The other situation I was thinking of was if you have a creature with less power than a blocker's toughness. Neither would die in combat. Do you bloodrush to kill it, so it's not there to block next turn (or can't get bigger if you're dealing with an evolve creature) or just play another creature to the board?

These scenarios are probably less common than I initially thought. I didn't realize that there were only 11 creatures with bloodrush (3 rares, 3 uncommons, and 5 commons). 

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What I'm seeing here, is people suggesting that the guild they are playing will take massive amounts of skill, and the others are mindless.
What I'm seeing here, is people suggesting that the guild they are playing will take massive amounts of skill, and the others are mindless.



That's usually par for the course.

For example, people that play blue often think their decks take more skill to play, even when they typically don't.

For example at the recent GP I ran Rakdos and when I bowled over my opponents several of them made comments about Rakdos taking no skill or being mindless (passive aggressive insults when they lost).

I also started seeing this with my aggro-populate decks. People would say the same thing.

Then my bounce/detain Azorius that had nothing over 2 toughness. When it crushed a rakdos deck full of bombs and an izzet deck with a whole bunch of tricks. I was told it was the "nuts draw" and "easy to play when you bounce or detain every turn".

All of these guilds will take some skill to be elite.

Good cards help but Gruul isn't as easy in practice as you think.

Simic-evolve is pretty straight forward, I don't see too many difficult decisions at this point. Your creature gets an automatic counter in certain situations ...that isn't tricky. Of course all of the guilds have plenty of cards to make things tricky but I feel like Dimir and Simic are probably the most straight-forward.

The reason I don't include Boros is because there will be MANY situations where you have to make a difficult choice to attack with some creatures that will die to bad trades just to get the Battalion trigger. I already see many instances where you could make big mistaeks or get big blowouts like this.

bulletd Guidelines: 5.0: I will take this card no matter what. Creature 1 or playable 1 or hate 1.Archangel of Thune 4.5: Bomb and splashable. Creature 1-2, playable 1-2, removal 1. Jace, Memory Adept 4.0: Excellent first pick first pack, will sway me into same colors. Creatures 1-4, removal 1. Haunted Plate Mail 3.5: Excellent first pack pick two, will confirm colors or possibly sway into second color. Doom Blade 3.0: Good in-color addition, or splashable removal/creature. Creatures 3-9, removal 1-3. wall of Frost 2.5: Solid pick in-color; creatures 5-12, removal 3-5. Dark Favor 2.0: Creatures 10-16; removal 6-7. Elvish Mystic 1.5: My 23rd or 22nd card, depending on removal. Act of Treason 1.0: 23rd card if I don't maindeck an additional land. Lay of the Land 0.5: This card will sometimes be sideboarded in. Brave the Elements 0.0: I will shred this card for counters. Darksteel Forge
Extort should be ignored until the game is controlled.

This is a trap!!
Ignoring extort is the best way to lose whether you are playing with it or against it.
I've been playtesting GTC Sealed a little yesterday, and I won a 2-1 game vs. Gruul (!!) thanks to Extort. Cards like Syndic of Tithes and Basilica Screecher are absolute beater and should be considered as threat very - VERY - quickly!
More often than not, you won't hit a perfect curve and will often end up with 1/2 mana free to use the extort efficiently.  

  

Basically I'm thinking of situations where your creature is about the same size as your opponent's blocker and will trade in battle. How do you decide if you should bloodrush to save the creature? I'm thinking size of the creatures is a factor. You probably don't want to use a big bloodrusher like Zhur-taa Swine to save a smaller creature. But the decison gets harder when the creatures are more similar in size say Slaugterhorn and Viashino Shanktail. Do you give up your 3/1 first striker that you could cast to save a 3/2 in combat? These decisions are a little bit harder than with a normal combat trick such as Giant Growth.
The other situation I was thinking of was if you have a creature with less power than a blocker's toughness. Neither would die in combat. Do you bloodrush to kill it, so it's not there to block next turn (or can't get bigger if you're dealing with an evolve creature) or just play another creature to the board?
These scenarios are probably less common than I initially thought. I didn't realize that there were only 11 creatures with bloodrush (3 rares, 3 uncommons, and 5 commons). 

If you need to know whether or not you should use Bloodrush, just ask it yourself that way: "What would I do NOW if I had Giant Growth in hand"?

Why would you be scared to do 2-for-1 with 1 creature boosted by a "potential" creature, while you would not be with a creature boosted by Giant Growth?

If you are scared to use a Bloodrush creature as a combat trick, it is probably because you rely too much on combat....... or/and play too few creatures! When you build your deck, try to count the Bloodrush creatures as "combat trick/other spells" and not as creatures.

Build your deck normally, with 15/16 creatures without Bloodrush, then add 7/8 Bloodrush creatures (or more, taking the creatures spot if you can).
I believe that would be a succesful way to build a powerful Gruul.

Also Wildwood Rebirth will be one of the beater in Gruul. Being able to go get a Bloodrush creature at instant speed in your graveyard to change a battle/go lethal will be key if played wisely.


Build your deck normally, with 15/16 creatures without Bloodrush, then add 7/8 Bloodrush creatures (or more, taking the creatures spot if you can).




This is terrible, terrible advice. I'm not trying to be rude, but thinking bloodrush replaces every single instance of removal in a limited deck is mind-boggingly wrong. And maindecking creatures specifically because they don't have a guild ability makes absolutely no sense whatsoever. Just maindeck good creatures and expect to hard cast Rubblehulk more than you bloodrush it.

Orzhov doesn't need to establish control to start pinging an opponent. It looks like it plays like white weenies before flexing into a standard beater deck with a extort as an alt wincon.

Boros I feel like is positioned more like Rakdos than Gruul is, since it's also about attacking all out and with all your dudes, and has some great, cheap creatures an effects. But, also like when Rakdos pairs with Golgari, when it pairs with Orzhov it can have a nice synergy between early and mid-game.

Maybe it's my memories of Avacyn Restored's UG successful pairing in limited, but Simic reminds me of a similar strategy. Play efficient fatties, get some CA, and bounce your opponent's creatures to make your board position lopsided. It's cool it can pair with the unblockable of Dimir and the fatties of Gruul, but I'm not even sure I care bc it looks like the most self-efficient guild to me. Evolve is a perk, but I can't see it being as relevent late-game, since the early drops will trade with your opponent's early drops, the mid-game will probably suffer removal, etc. I would say you should take a few hits to let your evolve guys fatten up in the early game if your strategy revolves around evolve.

I have the least interest in Dimir, bc I think Cipher is just too expensive. I really like some of the creatures and think a Dimir/Orzhov deck is the nightmare combo, but I'd have to pilot a few decks before I felt comfortable testing this out.

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