Onslaught Limited Synergy Review: Burn, Baby, Burn

Erratic Explosion

Ah, the Explosion. One of my favorite cards in the set, the Explosion is a burn spell which actually deserves to be talked about as a combo card. I mean shock, it… Shocks a creature. Woo hoo! But the explosion, it’s interesting.

Aether Charge

There are lots of beasts, and most of them are good. When you make them deal four upon entering play, damn it, they’re just really nasty. Five beasts and your opponent is dead. Obviously, if you’re playing a beast deck you want beasts – or perhaps Artificial Evolution on your Centaur Glade? With only one symbol in the casting cost, I might actually splash this card in green/black. It is sort of like evasion damage in colors that don’t have a lot of solid evasion.

Aggravated Assault

Generally, your attacks are winning – at which point the Assault is only a win more card – or they’re losing, at which point it’s trash. What is interesting about the card is it’s ability to get more out of tap effect creatures, like Goblin Sharpshooter or Embermage Goblin – but generally that’s not worth the card plus the high mana cost.

Airdrop Condor

There are not a lot of high-power goblins in this set, nor are there ever really a huge number of them – Goblin Mutant and Mogg Flunkies being too quality ones that come to mind – but sacking goblins to deal damage isn’t such a bad deal. It lets you double use dying goblins to a decent effect, or take down slightly larger creatures in combat, which is fine.

I like the Condor with Goblin Piledriver, who will do a lot of damage and often gets blocked for his low toughness; Goblin Taskmaster, which makes it a sort of reusable XX1R spell, Spitfire Handler – who is just really good with it – or Gratuitous Violence, which happens to really bring it up to par. Not such a bad card when the cards it combos with are goblins to begin with.


It’s a 3/3 hasted creature, which is all right for five mana. It also has a toned-down Firebreathing ability, which is pretty damn good now. And, if you draft further Avarax, it becomes downright abusive. Because it’s an uncommon, and pretty decent without other Avarax, these won’t get passed around a lot, so don’t count on that. But still pretty damn good.

Battering Craghorn

One of Red’s staple commons, the Craghorn is a great morph trick. He blocks with a */3, and you emerge a card ahead after paying the morph cost. That’s solid enough on its own. Add to that that First Strike – especially on three-power creatures – can become very hard to handle when combined with reusable burn abilities like Embermage Goblin or Lavamancer’s Skill, and the Craghorn gets better and better. As to instant-speed burn or pump, both Shock and Fever Charm are cheap and will let the Craghorn blow down most of the creatures in the set.

Blistering Firecat

Not really an amazing card, the Firecat tends to do a lot of damage and then goes away. It’s easily dealt with by pingers or first strike card, but otherwise tends to hit very hard, essentially acting like a cheaper, somewhat more manageable Searing Flesh. The Firecat is enjoyable alongside Oversold Cemetery, of course, coming back over and over again to frustrate your opponent heartily. Remember that you can play it morphed and then flip it over to reduce the symbol cost while increasing the overall mana cost, if need be; 3RR isn’t a horrid cost to pay for seven damage.

Break Open

There is never a real reason to play this card.

Brightstone Ritual

Should they print a decent red x spell later on in this block, this Ritual might become playable. But I wouldn’t play it right now unless I drafted the fifteen-goblin, three-Rorix deck.

Butcher Orgg

Well, Thorn Elemental Costs one more and can only hit players with it’s ability. They refer to this as "ultra trample" or something of the sort. Now this – this is ultra-trample. The Butcher Orgg will generate card advantage if it attacks. If it attacks while bolstered by a Crown of Fury, it becomes almost ridiculous. True – it’s seven mana, and the six-mana pit fighter legends are better cards either way – but it’s still a whole lot of pain.

Chain of Plasma

I am unsure about this card in the general usage, because it’s so flaky and not even that powerful anyway. The ability to do three damage is good because it removes creatures, gaining you a leg up on your opponent. However, the Chain gives him a chance to remove one of your creatures as well. In situations where he can’t remove anything you have, or is at low enough life he would worry about the bounce, I guess it would be an all right card. I’m not going to get too excited over a card which gets a drawback for being an instant Volcanic Hammer. Last I heard, Incinerate wasn’t broken.

Charging Slateback

Okay – this is like Ebonblade Reaper and Crude Rampart that you can use morph tricks to get it in as a blocker. Hurray. The Slateback is okay. It’s not a good card. It swings for four – but it’s over-priced, dies to Daru Lancer and others in combat, and generally isn’t that great. It’s better with beast enhancing cards, but there’s a lot of better beasts.

Commando Raid

The Raid is a pretty damn solid card. You need to get something through unblocked, but getting a little evasion dork through or just your opponent not being willing to trade isn’t too hard – and the Raid punishes them for not blocking. Skirk Commando is good because it has this ability right after its morph cost, while the Raid costs the same as its morph cost – and works with larger creatures or trampling, too. Solid. Great with Elven Riders or Thoughtbound Primoc, especially.

Crown of Fury

It’s a lot like the old card Lightning Reflexes, or the Masques card Flaming Sword – only the Crown of Fury is a lot better. First strike can make your good creatures very difficult to block, and on a great creature it makes it impossibly hard. It’s not vulnerable to tricks where your opponent removes the enchantment during combat and kills since it no longer has the bounce; just sack the crown and the ability stays. Oh yeah – it also makes a lot of blocking difficult when you’re going tribal, because one wrong move and you’ll sack the crown to change a lot of those blocks to favoring you. Even if they remove the creature during your attack, you can still manage to squeeze a little more from the Crown, making the card disadvantage a little bit less.

Custody Battle

This card is a lot like a delayed-reaction Threaten or any other temporary control effect. Because the effect applies to you as well, you will probably end up handing the creature back. Your opponent may not even argue with the battle, simply letting the creature flip-flop back and forth between players. The key here is then to punish him for letting it flop.

Nantuko Husk will allow you to eat the creature once you’ve got it; Endemic Plague will kill it as well, and others of his creatures. Enchantment removal after getting the creature through the battle will keep in on your side, as the effect is permanent until changed by another effect. Given the right circumstances, this card is probably fairly playable. Especially if your opponent drops a True Believer!

Dragon Roost

In draft, the roost is generally too slow to be an absolute bomb, but it’s still a game winner – it’s just one you might not get out. In sealed deck it’s the scariest of the creature producers. A single 5/5 flier for seven mana is hard to handle in sealed, but a recurring one that keeps splitting into… Yeah, you will likely win if you get this active on the table.

Dwarven Blastminer

How many non-basic lands in your opponent playing? Well, if he’s playing a lot, you can sideboard it in and then play it morphed, breaking open to smack down some lands. Otherwise, it’s a dead card.

Embermage Goblin

While he’s one more than Tim, he’s a goblin – which is good – and he can target players, which Sparksmith can’t. Should you have further Embermage Goblins to work with, he becomes a slow but powerful presence on the board, either winnowing your opponent down or forcing out his smaller creatures, even making your first strike vehemently hard to deal with. Because Red can hit very hard before the late game, think of the Embermage goblins as a sort of evasive damage creature.

Oh yeah – and he’s a wizard, so he keeps Thoughtbound Primoc around and lets you use Lavamancer’s Skill on him: It seems like a waste – but you’d probably put the skill on another creature and then what, do one more damage while tapping two creatures?

Erratic Explosion

Ah, the Explosion. One of my favorite cards in the set, the Explosion is a burn spell which actually deserves to be talked about as a combo card. I mean shock, it… Shocks a creature. Woo hoo! But the explosion, it’s interesting.

First off: If you draft or open a lot of Explosions, it may be worth cutting 1CC cards from your deck just to get consistent two-point explosions. If you somehow managed to get a deck with was fast but started at 3CC… Well, the Explosions would be really good, but I personally am not too sure about that one. That cuts out Sparksmith, Glory Seeker, so on.

Second, the Explosion’s damage isn’t determined until it’s resolved. Point it at a creature and your opponent doesn’t know if it’s going to do enough to kill it. If he tries to protect a 2/2 with Primal Boost, you just might flip over a Treespring Lorian and kill it anyway. This makes the card tricky to handle for an opponent who really don’t know what the Explosion is going to do.

Lastly, the explosion – of course – combos with Information Dealer, Sage Aven, and others. You can use it to filter lands away from the top of your library, or remove a card you don’t want at the time. Plus you can rely on the amount of damage it will deal, which is always good. Keep in mind if an Aphetto Vulture dies during your turn and you put it back on your library, you can explosion for six.

Explosion perfectly embodies what Red should be – being random and powerful.

Fever Charm

If you have a lot of first strikers, are facing a lot of wizards, or have a reason that haste alone is worth a card – well, Fever Charm will fit in all three of those circumstances. What is interesting about Fever charm is Haste at instant speed let’s your activate things like Couriers in response to your opponent playing effects – even when he doesn’t expect it. For example, if he Shocks your Wellwisher, you respond by hasting the Everglove Courier and giving it +2/+2.

But there’s no card advantage implied, so it’s not much of a "good" trick. The +2/+0 power ability would be better if there were more first strikers, if you have a lot of Daru Cavaliers or Daru Lancers, and of course Craghorns, it could be good to keep around. The Wizard ability works best if you have a Wizard of your own named Imagecrafter – but there are wizards in three colors, and keeping your Thoughtbound Primoc around isn’t a bad dealie. Fits into some decks, not so good in others. As such, it’s a lower pick, but still decent.

Flamestick Courier

Haste isn’t that great an ability, and the +2/+2 bonus is alright, but not exactly amazing when the other ability isn’t too huge. Essentially, you can throw down a fresh goblin and haste it up, but one of the real benefits of haste – that the creature can swing right after a major board purge (Slice and Dice, Starstorm, Akroma’s Vengeance, Infest) is generally lost here. It’s a good trick to push goblins through, but I wish it had of been something other than haste.

Goblin Machinist

This is Goblin fat. It’s random, unpredictable, and I’ve had one deal twenty points to me in a turn before. True, my opponent had Gratuitous Violence on the table and I had no blockers – but that’s a lot of pain from one card.

Goblin Piledriver

…And this is also a sort of goblin fat. Protection from a colour that most likely wouldn’t do much with him to begin with besides block isn’t so hot… But the other ability can become rapidly ridiculous. The Piledriver generally swings for three; at times he will goldfish during draft and he’ll swing for a lot more. Flamestick Courier is nice with this guy, as he hastes fresh goblin recruits and makes the Piledriver do more damage.

Goblin Pyromancer

If he had Haste, if he didn’t kill all goblins, if you have Goblin Sledder, if you have Crown of Fury, if you have a Fever Charm

If, if, if.

It’s a finisher, and for each goblin you have, the damage is familiar to how much Overrun does, assuming the Goblins get through unblocked. It’s hard to imagine using Wave of Indifference with this guy, but Taunting Elf doesn’t cost much mana. Finishers of the situational sort I’m okay with. There’s lot of goblins, and alongside Goblin Sledder he just gives all goblins +3/+0 and then gets rode around by another goblin as a sled. Pick based on your deck and the goblins with it.

Goblin Sharpshooter

The sharpshooter lacks the ability to be untapped unless creatures die; if creatures die, it untaps an awful lot. So it’s not like Tim; it’s worse. But, on the other hand, it’s better. You can keep the Sharpshooter untapped by sacrificing creatures to Nantuko Husk or simply by using Aphetto Alchemist. The Sharpshooter can be combined with a Sparksmith to kill a three toughness creature, or with Gratuitous Violence out, every creature that dies does 2 when it does. Goblins tend to die, so the sharpshooter will tend to untap a lot. Remember that the Sharpshooter’s untap ability goes on the stack individually, even if creatures all die at the same time, so you can respond to each of them.

Goblin Sky Raider

Do you really need another goblin? Use it. Do you have Goblin Pyromancer and your opponent doesn’t have fliers? Use it. Got Cabal Slaver? Well, there’s a -1/-1 and one mana less for an Abyssal Spectre. So on and so forth. Given the lack of flying, the Slaver combo is pretty brutal if your opponent doesn’t get the sky raider or slaver out of the picture fast.

Goblin Sledder

Because the Sledder can target any creature and the activation is mana-free, this basically makes all of your goblins some sort of freaky Voltron creature that combines on top of other, bigger and more important creatures. Opponent Shock your morphed Exalted Angel? Well, might as well trade the Sledder for the Shock instead. And so on. Any way to reuse goblins works nicely with this card.

Goblin Taskmaster

I’ve noted before that weenie creatures that run out of steam in the late game can be a bit of a burden if you draw them in the late game. However, the Taskmaster has the obvious advantage of being both a morph creature and being able to cheaply provide a damage bonus. The Taskmaster is good as a surprise, good at making Skirk Commando a lose-lose situation, and especially with good with Crown of Fury on your goblins.

It’s hard to write about the synergy of all these goblins, by the way. They’re just… Goblins.

Grand Melee

If your deck has a lot of fat while your opponent has a lot of trick creatures, this card will force them to tap their trick creatures or run into your wall of fatties. This means that trick creatures can’t be activated during an opponent’s turn, acting like a sort of City of Solitude for abilities. If you drop the melee after your attack phase, you will be able to block his forced attack, and then get the first "free" attack in.

I do not know if this card is maindeck worthy. However, if I was facing off against a horde of clerics, I would see this as a effective card for breaking the stalled ground or forcing my opponent to deal with my fatties how I see fit.

Gratuitous Violence

Another one of those bomb enchantments. Sure, if you don’t have a creature on the table, it’s useless – but when don’t you have creatures in Limited? When you’re losing. Okay, it does nothing there, but every other time the card is great – well, except when you don’t have three mountains.

The Violence is especially good at making even the tiniest evasion creatures or weenies extremely hard to deal with. When combined with blue, it makes Crafty Pathmage pass a four-damage shot through – even worse if you can flip over a larger morph creature. An unblocked Grinning Demon deals a whopping twelve points, while a Sharpshooter can kill two toughness creatures and slam your opponent for even a few creatures dying. Beyond that, first strikers become insanely hard to deal with. And so on. A bomb, if a hard-to-cast one that needs red to be your primary color.


While the card is eight mana, it reads "Your opponent has no blockers. You have a whole bunch more attackers. Hey, this is neat."

That’s about it. In will consistently win games. Especially if you have a Nantuko Husk to go with it. Now he has no blockers and a one-sided Wrath of God.


I expect more for five mana!

Lavamancer’s Skill

One of the stronger red commons, the Skill is really great with Wizards – especially with Aphetto Alchemist and another wizard. A three-card combo that does four damage a turn is fine by me! It can only strike creatures, but that’s fine as well; killing creatures generally wins games of limited.

There are three wizards outside of blue that the skill can be put on: Embermage Goblin, Shieldmage Elder, and Bloodline Shaman. The Shaman is probably the "best" combination of those three. I have seen people splash the Skill in blue/white or white/green if they have wizards… Probably to kill Sparksmiths.

Lay Waste

In draft, where land counts tend to be more forgiving, especially since most decks are two colors – or even worse, one primary color with a deck color that does removal – Lay Waste is pretty bad. However, it’s worth noting that the number of key three-symbol cards in Onslaught can make Lay Waste a little better to sideboard in. If you know your opponent has a Silvos, blowing up forests might help you out a little. In sealed deck, especially with bombs often determining how people build their decks, Lay Waste can be useful in removing a splash color or botching a person’s ability to use symbols. If not, it just cycles along.

Lightning Rift

If you have a lot of cycling in your deck, this card is brutal. It will likely prevent your opponent from cycling his cards, as the card advantage it will generate is ridiculous. The card requires cycling, but it isn’t card disadvantage for cycling – you’re drawing more cards and at times just throwing away extra cycling lands. If you were able assemble Cemetery + Krosan Tusker + Rift in a limited format, I would definitely pat you on the back.

The Rift is good with cycling cards, especially the reverse kicker cantrip ones. You don’t need me to tell you that.

Mana Echoes

While it’s possible to assemble the Words of Wilding/Mana Echoes/Slate of Ancestry combo in draft or perhaps even Sealed, would it be worth it? I have no idea. Can you win the game with fifty bears on the table? Sounds good, eh? Don’t play this card anyway.

Menacing Ogre

A very nasty fatty, the Ogre’s bidding process is the key to playing the card. In a race, you don’t want to overbid – but you don’t want your opponent to win off a low bid, either. Comparing life totals and the board, you should bid enough life that your opponent would have to lose a nasty chunk to win, but you won’t lose too much. Don’t bid five or more life unless it’s really crucial that you swing with a 5/5. Ideally, you bid as much as your opponent, which results in both players losing life and the Ogre getting counters.

Nosy Goblin

While three mana for 2/1 isn’t the best of deals, the Goblin plays interesting head games with your opponent. Drop this on turn 3 and he might not be willing to drop the Exalted Angel in his hand for a while…. Or will he, betting you won’t sack the goblin? Oh, oh, oh. Either way, it forces him to considered usage of the morph ability carefully.

Remember that you can’t respond to creatures unmorphing, so the Goblin can’t wait your opponent to tap out to use morph and activate. It has to been done when he can’t respond, or you’ll just end up with a dead gobbo.

Pinpoint Avalanche

It’s expensive, and can’t target players, but it’s quality removal in a set that doesn’t have a lot of removal at this end. It also kills clerics dead. Good stuff.

Reckless One

Given enough Goblins, this One is all right. Haste isn’t as good an ability as some of the other One’s skills, but at times it might be key. Other than that, he’s pretty plain.

Risky Move

A bit too expensive for what might otherwise be an interesting effect.

Rorix Bladewing

So much could be said about this card, but everything one would say wouldn’t be worth it. Just play it, okay?

Searing Flesh

I would have vastly preferred if this card could nail creatures; then it would have been a lot better. The flesh requires your opponent reaches seven life to be any good. It’s a huge chunk of life, so sometimes it’s enough to win the game; often it is not. Personally, I’d shy away from it in draft, and run it in sealed deck if I needed a last card.

Shaleskin Bruiser

A card that naturally looks both too small for its casting cost – and yet somehow communicates itself as a win condition, leaving you baffled as to whether or not to play the card. The Bruiser is best when combined with a deck that will be able to assemble the mana by turn 7 and have beasts around to make for the single, insanely powerful attack. Cards like Explosive Vegetation, Wirewood Elf, and Krosan Tusker get along with him. Beasts are pretty much all playable, but without the acceleration, he might not hit early enough to matter or ever show up at all. Look at your deck and figure out for yourself if he’ll get on the table and wreck stuff. If not, don’t bother.


Because of Morph, Shock is a lot better here than it would normally be. And normally it’s a great card in limited. Just remember: If your opponent is at two, Shock him.

Skirk Commando

One of the most feared Morph creatures, because of the combination of Battering Craghorn and him being in the common red morph slots, a lot of players have see it as a hard calculation: Block, and see a Craghorn emerge to kill it. Don’t block, Skirk emerges to kill it. Good times, either way, for the Red Morphist.

The Skirk is generally very solid and needs little reinforcements, but an early crown of fury can do wonders with him. Wave of Indifference, if you need to kill fliers, can get this guy through to hit. Crafty Pathmage obviously has synergy.

Skirk Fire Marshal

While the Supreme Inquisitor is a win condition with no effect on the board, the Fire Marshall is a win condition with perhaps too much effect on the board. He will most likely clear the board of all creatures, and deal a wallop to both players.

While the Fire Marshall is "all right," the fun combo with him is Run Wild or Boneknitter, letting you keep more than just one dork on the table. But that’s putting two bad cards together – and well, you know.

If you have a lot of goblins, he’s probably just going to be card disadvantage. However, the protection from red in combination with a passable ability means he can work very nicely with Thunder of Hooves, Starstorm, or Slice and Dice, if you’ve got those cards, as well as his own ability.

Skirk Propector

As a 1/1 goblin for R, he’s a pretty standard-fare sort of goblin. His ability sucks compared to, say, Taskmaster and Sledder. You might run him if you need goblins – but if you need him to run goblins, you’re in red when too many other people are.

Skittish Valesk

As probabilities go, this Beast should read something like this "Put Valesk into play as a 2/2 colorless creature. During your attack phase, you may pay 5R to turn Valesk into a 5/5 creature. At the beginning of every other one of your upkeeps, if Valesk is 5/5 it becomes 2/2 again."

While it’s really just typing out the card with some witticism added, let’s be frank: Six mana every other turn for a 5/5 is garbage and that’s just how it goes. (Except that I was surprised to see how much play it saw in Philadelphia – The Ferrett, who thought it was crap himself.)

Slice and Dice

Damage-based board clearers are good. Damage-based board clearers that can hit smaller dorks and cantrip are excellent, especially at instant speed.

Slice and Dice is amazing when you have effects that will keep your creatures alive post combat. If I drafted the R/W soldiers deck with two Slice and Dice and a Starstorm, I might actually maindeck Crown of Awe – since the ridiculousness of a one-sided Slice and Dice is almost too irresistible. Anyways, any mass clear effect is good, especially adaptable ones.

Snapping Thragg

The Thragg is strange – because it’s morph costs is double that of Skirk Commando, going from the”sane” and into”zuh?” category. That’s not to say there is no benefit to playing the Thragg morphed, but most of the time you would much rather play it for five mana and just be done with it. By the time you have the six mana to flip it over, your opponent might very well have a blocker open that isn’t scared of you flipping over Battering Craghorn or whatever else.

I like the Thragg, but a lot of my earlier comments on Skirk Commando and so on apply here. A Thragg with a Crown of Fury is a mean bastard – but that’s nothing new. Keep in mind that the Thragg is beast, and big enough that Vitality Charm’s trample effect can turn exchanges against mid-sized blockers into multiple kills. Trample damage still counts as combat damage.

Solar Blast

Burn spells are generally good in limited, even somewhat over-priced ones. The Solar Blast might have very well made it to playable in Constructed had it of been priced at the same damage-to-mana ratio of Urza’s Rage. But either way, it’s still a good card.

The Cycling effect can be used with first strikers, or as an extra point to send an otherwise-surviving creature to the graveyard during combat, without actually trading an extra card of your own off. With or against Sparksmith, it’s a good card. Just watch yourself during a game; it’s often worth using it as”one more free point of damage” to put yourself a little further ahead. Because the card is effectively two whole different styles of direct damage in one card, the Blast is a favorite of mine. It also kills Voidmage Prodigy dead whether or not they have other wizards!


Creature kill is really good. Reusable creature kill is really, really good. Do I really need to talk about this card? Seriously.

Against Sparksmiths, sometimes having too many goblins in play can be very bad for your opponent. Imagecrafting or Mistforming to force him to take extra points of damage – while at best temporary advantage – can at times push your opponent down as fast as you’re going. Once he’s forced a two toughness target, he wants to do nothing more than two damage to himself. If you crank up the damage he takes, things can become gorgeously overpainful in a very brief period of time. This is one of those few times where a Standardize can be an extremely brutal moment. I do hope that Wizards has the savvy to print something in white and blue which deals more effective with the Sparksmith than the current crop. Having to get a Riptide Entrancer through while the ‘Smith is tapped and stealing it isn’t exactly a solution I’ve pulled off many times. I’ve done it, but a rare as a solution to a common is :Sadface:

Spitfire Handler

As goblins go, this guy is one of my favourites. While he isn’t much of a blocker, he is a lot of fun. He will often enough trade with whatever blocks him, and if your opponent’s deck stalls, he will deal a lot of damage to him or her in a hurry… Especially with effects like Dirge of Dread or Choking Tethers to remove his blockers from the equation. Sure, Pygmy Pyrosaur wasn’t a beating stick, but what do you expect out of a two-mana uncommon goblin? Another Sparksmith?

Spurred Wolverine

Sure, beasts attack a lot. They’re good at it. But sometimes your opponent is winning, and the Wolverine could give your guys first strike.

Wow – awesome! Five mana for a dork that doesn’t have morph (so it’s not a surprise), requires another beast to use it’s ability, and is over-priced for its pathetic stats. Yes, it’s a filler card – and not always awful – but it’s pretty awful most of the time. At least it’s not Skittish Valesk.


It’s a rare Savage Twister that’s an instant and doesn’t require splashing! In perhaps Onslaught’s best color! Where do I sign up for this getting these in sealed deck? Oh baby. I mentioned the tricks earlier on. Sweet, sweet Starstorm.


Well, this guy doesn’t work too well with you casting Starstorm. He doesn’t mind your opponent doing it, though.

The fact of the matter is this: Tephraderm should just be named”tradesiesderm.” Barring a Cruel Revival, he’s going to trade. He’s going to kill everything that blocks him, no matter how damn big is it, except for Silklash Spider, Glarecaster and various regenerators. Everything else? He’s all over like a stack of bricks.

Combo this guy with Run Wild, Vitality Charm, or anything else which will keep him alive and trading. When he’s swinging for four a turn, your opponent isn’t going to get him out of his face without either having his face beaten in or losing dudes in the process.

Thoughtbound Primoc

As the format balances out and people become less adverse to the concept of casting wizards, the Primoc will, perhaps, lose its strength. Often, it is simply very good. It blocks morph creatures and lives to sing about it, or just swings for two. It’s a beast, meaning it triggers many beast effects. The problem is that the drawback is very, very bad if you don’t have wizards of your own and he does; paying 2/3 to give your opponent a flier is a huge pain in the ass. Thus, the Primoc is good with cards that will see it dead should it turn on you or wish to: Nantuko Husk, a suicidal Contested Cliffs, or a Silklash Spider clearing fliers off the board. Too bad most of those are rares.

There are two wizards in red… Of course, one of them dies right after hitting the table.


This is a card designed to give you a temporary, but possibly very potent, burst of momentum. It is based on your opponent’s best creature, so sometimes it’s pretty bad – and sometimes it’s pretty good. Stealing your opponent’s Sparksmith to have him kill himself is tech (not really). Stealing creatures to sacrifice them to Husk, Read the Runes, or whatever after attacking with them is pretty good as well.

Threaten shouldn’t be an instant, though – so don’t complain. Temporary Insanity is a very frustrating card to get hammered with in a tight Limited game, and it’s got two drawbacks and a higher casting cost to Threaten’s one of being a sorcery.

Thunder of Hooves

Is the Thunder good? I don’t know, you tell me: It’s a global effect. It can be somewhat controlled by keep an eye on the number beasts in play. If you’ve gotten four beasts on your side of the table, you won’t want to thunder. Good. If he does, you can nail most of them. You can control the damage absolutely with Mistforms – who, for the most part, don’t take damage from the Hooves. So on and so forth.

If you think it won’t become active, just keep in mind there are twenty-nine Beasts in four out of five colors – and most of them are playable. You need beasts of your own, but often your opponent is willing to bring some to the party as well.

Oh yeah, Thunder of Hooves is also a way to damage your opponent – which at times is enough to win the game.

Wave of Indifference

This is a card that either wins the game when you have more power than your opponent’s side of the board, or when forcing one solid attack through will put him low enough to finish him off, or when you use it to pass Executioners and Thraggs home to daddy. The Wave is good, sometimes it wins games… But sometimes it loses them.

Words of War

"Every card in your deck is now Shock when you want it to be.” I need say nothing else about this card, it’s so very good. Draw more cards and do more damage! w00t!