Dark Ascension Spoilers: First Look

Dark Ascension Spoilers: First Look

Today we look at some spoilers for the imminent release of Dark Ascension!

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I love your articles but may I make some request? Most of the Magic the Gathering Websites I go to have some kind of thing where when you hover over the card name on their site it brings up a lil java popup next to your cursor and then goes away when you move your cursor. Could we get something like that going on? Would make your articles like..100x easier to go through.

Also Question regarding protection effects.

Does Protection offer Protection from global effects. Like, I've always considered pestalence a global effect, but your article today suggests that protection from black would stop that. Does that mean that if I have a protection from black that it would stop Damnation? or Protection from white stop a wrath of god?

Protection stops things being damaged by, enchanted by, blocked by, or targeted by creatures, spells, or abilities with the attributes they have protection from. (DEBT is an acronym you can use to remember this.) Since Pestilence does damage, protection from black stops it, even though it doesn't target. Since Damnation and Wrath don't do any of those things, protection doesn't stop them.

Sandytimeman:
I love your articles but may I make some request? Most of the Magic the Gathering Websites I go to have some kind of thing where when you hover over the card name on their site it brings up a lil java popup next to your cursor and then goes away when you move your cursor. Could we get something like that going on? Would make your articles like..100x easier to go through.

We have plans to add that type of feature at some point, but it's fairly far down the list currently. Sorry! :(

...!!!

This set is AWESOME.

I've been hoping to get more zombie builds together, and it looks like I may want to scrap my UB zombie deck for a WB, specially if i get my hands on Sorin for the power up flavor. that 2/1 zombie that's essentially resummonable is such a wonderful card. dunno if it would be wise to replace my Diegraf ghouls with it... but it makes me laugh at how effective half a corpse could be.

But i think what really has my mind going is the lore of this- just what has happened in Innistrad now. it looks like things have taken an exceedingly drastic turn for the worse in more ways then one- and its glorious.

May the dead now rule! kyehhheheheh.

I can't wait to get my hands on this set now. I've already got plans for my most awesome blue/black deck yet! *In announcer voice* Newly enhanced with extra zombie!

I'm thinking I might have to put together some WB deck ideas in the event that I get my hands on the new Sorin. A -6 that kills planeswalkers and recruits them on your side? Yes please.

Wouldn't mind seeing a Urza or Mishra planeswalker...you know for old times sake. XD *HINT HINT WOTC*

Havengul Lich scares the hell out of me. Combine that with the old Nicol Bolas deck (or just the lands) and Burning Vengeance and Secrets of the Dead, throw in Flayer of the Hatebound and Faithless Looting and you can get Havengul Lich out quickly and reliably, with its already OP ability becoming even better.

Why....WHY IS SORIN PRE-ORDERING FOR $60!!!!! a few years ago, Black/white tokens was my favorite deck, and this iteration of it just has sooooo much potential with Vault of the Archangel practically being a reusable overrun.

Eh, Sorin's price will drop after the hype settles down and the sets been out for a few weeks. Liliana of the Veil was at one point selling for $80, after all...she's now down to a slightly more reasonable $30.

aidutcher:
I'm thinking I might have to put together some WB deck ideas in the event that I get my hands on the new Sorin. A -6 that kills planeswalkers and recruits them on your side? Yes please.

If you haven't seen it, they spoiled another token generator today in Lingering Souls. This one has flashback at 1B so you can get even more value out of it. That gives you Gather the Townsfolk, Increasing Devotion, and Lingering Souls from Dark Ascension plus Midnight Haunting from Innistrad all generating Tokens. Throw in Spectral Procession for Modern and you've got quite a few options for getting a WB token build off the ground! Also, Sorin.

I like the new Sorin too but everyone is a little to hyped over his ultimate. Planeswalker ultimates win you the game 9/10 times anyway, and if they don't take damage for enough turns you're probably winning anyway.

At this point B/W tokens looks like it might be a thing so that's basically the deck he'll appear in most often. Remember you're playing a planeswalker for their 1st or 2nd abilities, since those will be relevant most often.

Oh and does anyone else think it's a little weird that most of the R/B cards have synergy with humans? I understand the flavor reasons (vampires protecting their food) but gameplay wise it seems a little hard to make work.

Grey_Focks:
Why....WHY IS SORIN PRE-ORDERING FOR $60!!!!! a few years ago, Black/white tokens was my favorite deck, and this iteration of it just has sooooo much potential with Vault of the Archangel practically being a reusable overrun.

Eh, Sorin's price will drop after the hype settles down and the sets been out for a few weeks. Liliana of the Veil was at one point selling for $80, after all...she's now down to a slightly more reasonable $30.

The thing that will keep Sorin's price up more than anything is that this set is only being drafted at 1 pack per player for 3 months then never drafted with again. If he happen's to find a rather dominant deck to go into as Esper control/Wb token aggro may just be then he'll not come down from that price much at all. Don't even get started if new enemy fixing is printed as then all bets are off as to card prices and what deck's he'll get shoved into.

Encaen:

aidutcher:
I'm thinking I might have to put together some WB deck ideas in the event that I get my hands on the new Sorin. A -6 that kills planeswalkers and recruits them on your side? Yes please.

If you haven't seen it, they spoiled another token generator today in Lingering Souls. This one has flashback at 1B so you can get even more value out of it. That gives you Gather the Townsfolk, Increasing Devotion, and Lingering Souls from Dark Ascension plus Midnight Haunting from Innistrad all generating Tokens. Throw in Spectral Procession for Modern and you've got quite a few options for getting a WB token build off the ground! Also, Sorin.

Modern's slightly too fast for him now I think.
Card's from the set that will see play in modern and other eternal formats however are Thalia and Grafdigger's cage which are complete hoser's for cheap.

To answer the question put forth in the article on what is my favourite card int he set. Gotta be Huntmaster of the Fells who has lead me to begin brewing a RUG counterwolves deck. He's like the wolfy lovechild of a grave titan and inferno titan that comes out two turns earlier and let's you do silly things with moonmist such as:

Transform trigger goes on the stack
Respond with moonmist
Moonmist resolves flipping huntmaster dealing 2 damage to the dome and 2 to a creature. The board is fogged for a turn.
Initial transform trigger resolves flipping him back to human. Netting you another 2/2 wolf and another 2 life. All from just that one moonmist!

You can do it all again using snapcaster mage to flash back your moonmist too during your opponents next turn for even more CA.

Not a bad article. I feel that you may have over-discussed - talking about less than all the spoilers would have been easier.

Also, as a side note: You cannot have an infinite loop with a sharuum. What you have is an arbitarily large loop; you have to choose how many times you wish to do it. Now, given your opponent is dying anyway it's unlikely to matter, but it's worth noting. (Because Sharuum is a 'may' it isn't a mandatory loop)

If you have a *genuinely* infinite loop of all mandatory actions which does not cause the game to end, the game becomes a draw.

For example: You control a faceless butcher which is currently devouring your opponents faceless butcher. No other creatures are in play. You play a third faceless butcher.

Assuming nothing can occur which breaks the loop, the game is a draw. (Is my butcher butchers my first butcher, which frees your butcher which butchers my second butcher, which frees my first butcher which butchers your butcher, which frees my second butcher to butcher my first butcher which....)No player has any options, so the game can never escape the loop, so the game is a draw. Or, if you manage it on MODO, the game crashes.

If, on the other hand:

1) there is an enchantment in play with 'whenever a creature comes into play, its control takes 1 damage' - the game ends with a winner, as someone dies
2) One of us can break the loop, we can make the game not a draw...but it isn't mandatory. (IE if I have a lightning bolt I can choose not to cast it).
3) If faceless butcher said 'you may...' it wouldn't be an infinite loop; the players would choose a number of times to go around the loop (if anything relevant occurred) and skip the gamestate forward to that point.

im looking forward to the Vampires in Dark Ascension, but now i gotta figure out how to rebuild my deck which is slightly concerning but i think it should be fun

Karl AMD:
im looking forward to the Vampires in Dark Ascension, but now i gotta figure out how to rebuild my deck which is slightly concerning but i think it should be fun

R/B Aggro vamps

4 Stromkirk noble
2 Grim Lavamancer
4 Bloodcrazed neonate
2 Markov Blademaster (1/1 double strike with put a +1/+1 token if it hits a player)
4 Stromkirk Captain (Lord for vampires and gives them all First strike)
2 Adaptive Automoton
4 Bloodline Keeper
4 Falkenrath aristocrat

3 Arc Trail
3 Doom Blade
3 Gut shot
3 Incinerate

2 Stensia Bloodhall
4 Dragonskull Summit
4 Blackcleave Cliffs
8 Swamp
6 Mountain

That's a nice simple vampire deck that goes RAWR!!OMNOMNOMNOM. The curve is good and has enough burn to clear a path for your guys/ finish by melting face.
It's also the one deck where bloodhall isn't a bad card lol

Yay! I'm happy that zombies are a very popular tribe now since 2010 on. I'm so far disappointed with the two-sided cards, but I'll keep my hopes up.

mrverbal:
Also, as a side note: You cannot have an infinite loop with a sharuum. What you have is an arbitarily large loop; you have to choose how many times you wish to do it. Now, given your opponent is dying anyway it's unlikely to matter, but it's worth noting. (Because Sharuum is a 'may' it isn't a mandatory loop)

That's fair enough, thanks! I do maintain, however, that "arbitrarily-large-amount-of-damage loop" lacks the luster of "infinite damage loop." :D All the same, your point is well taken.

As to new spoilers, I noticed they've put out Uncommon lords for Werewolves and Vampires, but nothing for Zombies, Humans, or Spirits. That makes me sad. I really want an Uncommon, 3 mana, non-legendary Mikaeus, the Unhallowed that gives my zombie hordes Undying.

TheGuy(wantstobe):

R/B Aggro vamps

4 Stromkirk noble
2 Grim Lavamancer
4 Bloodcrazed neonate
2 Markov Blademaster (1/1 double strike with put a +1/+1 token if it hits a player)
4 Stromkirk Captain (Lord for vampires and gives them all First strike)
2 Adaptive Automoton
4 Bloodline Keeper
4 Falkenrath aristocrat

3 Arc Trail
3 Doom Blade
3 Gut shot
3 Incinerate

2 Stensia Bloodhall
4 Dragonskull Summit
4 Blackcleave Cliffs
8 Swamp
6 Mountain

That's a nice simple vampire deck that goes RAWR!!OMNOMNOMNOM. The curve is good and has enough burn to clear a path for your guys/ finish by melting face.
It's also the one deck where bloodhall isn't a bad card lol

thanks a lot, i have all those cards too (except for the ones in dark ascension obviously, yay preordering to)

My fear for Dark Ascension is that there will be too many rares and mythics and not enough commons to allow a descent amount of variance between each booster. That's what happened to Mirrodin Besieged and New Phyrexia. I can't tell you how many Blightwidows I got just pulling boosters.
I also feel some of the rarities are a bit switched up, Zombie Apocalypse being the main one.

Archdemon of Greed and Thraben Doomsayer is going to be amazing. Can't wait for that. And I love Gravecrawler, the new Mikaeus and the Havengul Lich. I can't see Zombie Apocalypse being all that useful though. Yes, it's a nice splashy effect, but the second part is more or less completely useless outside of Standard. I guess we'll see how things go.

Moonveil Dragon, on the other hand, is ridiculous. Since it's giving the buff to everyone, not the ability, making an RG deck with him and Primal Rage is going to be insane.

I'm actually interested in a Green/Blue graveyard deck. A self-mill deck to get creatures into the grave, so you can play ridiculously high P/T Boneyard Wurms and Splinterfrights. Of course, being able to drop early Ghoultrees is also nice. Here's a decklist to show what I'm talking about.

[Creatures] 25
4x Birds of Paradise
3x Phantasmal Bear
4x Boneyard Wurm
2x Viridian Emissary
4x Merfolk Looter
3x Phantasmal Image
3x Splinterfright
2x Ghoultree

[Planeswalker] 2
2x Garruk Relentless

[Spells] 11
3x Dream Twist
3x Thought Scour
3x Ponder
2x Mulch

[Lands] 22
8x Island
10x Forest
4x Hinterland Harbor

Even though this is Blue, I'm not worried about control. The point is to mill as quickly as possible so you can start summoning huge creatures. It's very much aggro, meant to be played with reckless abandon for your own library.

They are really pushing black/white token decks especially with sorin, lord of innistrad and the new sorcery midnight haunting with cheap flashback. Except for the fact that the mana base seems to suck compared to ally colors, it seems like it will be good.

I really like the 6 drops there putting in this set but until the titans rotate out in next block(which MaRo has almost confirmed by saying m12 titans were a mistake) then yeah you have to make the comparison and say there not as good as titans. Big creatures that you invest a lot of mana into need to make some kind of impact when they hit the board like ETB triggers or huge card advantage quick like consecrated sphinx who dodges dismember (I know it is not popular to say it dies to dismember herp derp but it still is relevant and dismissing that fact is nothing more then false hope in a cards power level).

Moonveil dragon is my favorite card with potential with scars and m12 rotation in standard as it can end the game if you untap with him.

crimson sickle2:
My fear for Dark Ascension is that there will be too many rares and mythics and not enough commons to allow a descent amount of variance between each booster. That's what happened to Mirrodin Besieged and New Phyrexia. I can't tell you how many Blightwidows I got just pulling boosters.
I also feel some of the rarities are a bit switched up, Zombie Apocalypse being the main one.

It does have only 158 cards in the set with no basic lands which is true for mid block sets like worldwake and besieged.

Its good that Avacyn restored will be similar to rise of the eldrazi in that it is a stand alone set which will have as many cards as innistrad and scars had.

Encaen:

mrverbal:
Also, as a side note: You cannot have an infinite loop with a sharuum. What you have is an arbitarily large loop; you have to choose how many times you wish to do it. Now, given your opponent is dying anyway it's unlikely to matter, but it's worth noting. (Because Sharuum is a 'may' it isn't a mandatory loop)

That's fair enough, thanks! I do maintain, however, that "arbitrarily-large-amount-of-damage loop" lacks the luster of "infinite damage loop." :D All the same, your point is well taken.

As to new spoilers, I noticed they've put out Uncommon lords for Werewolves and Vampires, but nothing for Zombies, Humans, or Spirits. That makes me sad. I really want an Uncommon, 3 mana, non-legendary Mikaeus, the Unhallowed that gives my zombie hordes Undying.

undying for Zombies would be sick. And, hey, you've still got 2/3rds of a set to hope with :)

And on the infinite thing: Yea, it sounds better. I just think when answering a rules question you should note that actually infinite loops and practically infinite loops work somewhat differently :)

Sandytimeman:
Also Question regarding protection effects.

Does Protection offer Protection from global effects. Like, I've always considered pestalence a global effect, but your article today suggests that protection from black would stop that. Does that mean that if I have a protection from black that it would stop Damnation? or Protection from white stop a wrath of god?

The reason the White Knight would ignore the pestilence is because it is damage coming from a black source; global or not, things that are pro a color have damage that color would do reduced to zero (It's why, say, a pyroclasm wouldn't kill a Kor firewalker)

As a sweep spell (Wrath, damnation) isn't doing damage, there's really no way to protect against those besides being indestructable

Just for future reference, the four rules of protection are:

Cannot be targeted by
Cannot be enchanted by
Cannot be damaged by
Cannot be blocked by

At least I'm pretty sure; anyone can feel free to correct me

I'm most excited about Havengul Lich, hell make my Heartless Summoning deck into a combo deck.
I just have to find a way to splice red for Priest of Urabrasks...

Honestly the card that worries me most won't affect Type 2 (Standard) nearly as heavily as it will affect Legacy/Vintage players: Grafdiggers Cage

With this thing being released, a very good portion of popular Legacy/Vintage decks will be easily shut down, simply because they rely so heavily on playing creatures from places other than their hands. Oath of Druids, Reanimate, Tooth and Nail, Goblin Welder, Ichorid, and any number of other amazing cards will be utterly worthless once this thing hits the field, which is potentially possible turn 1 (And let's face it, if you know you're playing against one of these guys, you'll mulligan until you have a Cage in your hand.)

"But wait! There are so many ways to destroy artifacts in Legacy/Vintage!" Yes, there are. That doesn't mean you'll necessarily have them early enough to save your life. Chances are if you get shut down with one of these on turn 1-2 you're going to die simply due to how fast the format plays out. You could conceivably counter the cage with a few of the above mentioned decks (Reanimate/Oath tend to use blue for free countering) but not all of them.

No equipment love? This makes Soup sad...

Sandytimeman:
Does Protection offer Protection from global effects. Like, I've always considered pestalence a global effect, but your article today suggests that protection from black would stop that. Does that mean that if I have a protection from black that it would stop Damnation? or Protection from white stop a wrath of god?

Protection means it cannot be blocked, damaged, or targeted by. Wrath of God does none of those.

reiyo_oki:
Honestly the card that worries me most won't affect Type 2 (Standard) nearly as heavily as it will affect Legacy/Vintage players: Grafdiggers Cage

With this thing being released, a very good portion of popular Legacy/Vintage decks will be easily shut down, simply because they rely so heavily on playing creatures from places other than their hands. Oath of Druids, Reanimate, Tooth and Nail, Goblin Welder, Ichorid, and any number of other amazing cards will be utterly worthless once this thing hits the field, which is potentially possible turn 1 (And let's face it, if you know you're playing against one of these guys, you'll mulligan until you have a Cage in your hand.)

"But wait! There are so many ways to destroy artifacts in Legacy/Vintage!" Yes, there are. That doesn't mean you'll necessarily have them early enough to save your life. Chances are if you get shut down with one of these on turn 1-2 you're going to die simply due to how fast the format plays out. You could conceivably counter the cage with a few of the above mentioned decks (Reanimate/Oath tend to use blue for free countering) but not all of them.

If you're going to claim that sometimes your opponent will draw a card that can stop your deck, then you have to also allow that he won't draw it at all, or that he'll draw it and you'll have your way to get rid of it. You're assuming worst-case scenario, and because of the randomness of drawing from a library, you can't always do that. Sure, Grafdigger's Cage sucks for recursion and fetching decks, but that doesn't mean it's going to single-handedly shut them down. It's a sideboard card that you put in during game two. You should be putting in an equal amount of artifact destruction/prevention. After that, it's up to your draws.

Sandytimeman:
Wouldn't mind seeing a Urza or Mishra planeswalker...you know for old times sake. XD *HINT HINT WOTC*

Wasn't Urza's spark put in Karn? I think he's like ultra dead.

Also he's the most powerful of all planeswalkers I would think.

He made something and that something he made made a planet. That's baller.

theultimateend:

Sandytimeman:
Wouldn't mind seeing a Urza or Mishra planeswalker...you know for old times sake. XD *HINT HINT WOTC*

Wasn't Urza's spark put in Karn? I think he's like ultra dead.

Also he's the most powerful of all planeswalkers I would think.

He made something and that something he made made a planet. That's baller.

I think Bolas is supposed to be more powerful.

Souplex:

theultimateend:

Sandytimeman:
Wouldn't mind seeing a Urza or Mishra planeswalker...you know for old times sake. XD *HINT HINT WOTC*

Wasn't Urza's spark put in Karn? I think he's like ultra dead.

Also he's the most powerful of all planeswalkers I would think.

He made something and that something he made made a planet. That's baller.

I think Bolas is supposed to be more powerful.

Hard to tell, Bolas hasn't been making any planets last I knew and he nearly got blitzed by an avatar of himself.

I think he's mostly lucky that Urza was dead before he really started cropping up as a planeswalker (instead of a book reading vampire dragon).

I went to pre-release today, pulled the mythic Werewolf card, but had no other transforming cards other than Tharben sentry/militia, so I ended up playing a blue/white control esque deck, which went 2/3 being my first Magic Event, I'm not entirely impressed, but at the same time glad I went.

 

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