The new set is out, and I actually got some time to play multiplayer games with the new cards. The first games were with proxies, of course, and the spoilers weren’t always accurate, but the games were fun. But one card is still what the spoilers said, and I have enough experience with it to say that it is every bit as insane in play as it seemed when we first heard about it.
I think it is the best multiplayer card ever printed.
Best Multiplayer Card Ever Printed.
No question. No quibbles. No exceptions.
Every multiplayer deck I can think of would be better with four of this in it. Every single one.
In one game, I cast Balance. All creatures died, and everyone was left with three lands and two cards in hand. I pitched Wrath of God and Masticore to keep a land and this card. Two turns later I played it. I won the game.
It is that good.
I’m talking about Mind’s Eye.
If your opponents play this, you absolutely must play artifact destruction. You should seriously consider Splinter if they have more than one. (Heh – so it’s kind of a Splinter of the Mind’s Eye – The Ferrett, a terminal Star Wars geek)
In duels this is probably not broken – and maybe not even that great. In duels, you only draw one card between turns. In duels, Mind’s Eye is, effectively, a personal Howling Mine that costs five and has an upkeep of one. Nice to have, but you are investing a lot in this card.
In a four-player game, though, this is golden. In bigger games this is insane. That’s because in multiplayer games, this isn’t one personal Howling Mine – it is a bunch of Howling Mines, all just for you, if you choose to use them.
Let’s say you drop this turn 4 or 5, which taps you out. If the rest of the table does not kill you that turn, you untap, and then can draw a card on each opponent’s turn. After that, you do not miss a land drop for the rest of the game. Getting the mana to pay for extra cards, and to play them, is pretty easy.
Your opponents will try to kill this – or you – just as quickly as possible. In our games, with four or five players, this typically draws the controller at least a couple cards, and frequently many more. That is a huge advantage, and generally enough to win the game.
The only downside I can see is that this card just made Decimate a bit better, because there are going to be artifacts in play in a lot more multiplayer games. It may even make Grim Reminder worthwhile – after all, you will have a Mind’s Eye, and all your opponents will have Mind’s Eye. (I’m not kidding.)
In the best of all multiplayer games, you will get to play yours first, then play something to protect it, like Fountain Watch or Leonin Abunas, then play Meddling Mage naming Mind’s Eye. (Then another naming Wrath of God, and another naming Akroma’s Vengeance…)
I used to think that the most ridiculous Emperor games were those where both Emperors played decks with lots of Royal Assassins and so forth, so no one could attack. Games where the Emperor can get a Mind’s Eye into play may be even worse. Get the Eye, draw into the combo, nice game. Maybe – I haven’t had a chance to play emperor with this, yet.
My group quickly decided that this should be restricted – but ganging up on anyone who plays one works as well. At the very least, this card will make sure everyone plays a lot of artifact destruction.
I would like to say that I broke this in our games first, but that isn’t true. Ingrid, my wife, played a deck with four of these, some mana acceleration, a bit of protection, some discard and some Onslaught Words. Remember Words of War and Words of Waste?
The first couple times she got Mind’s Eye in play, we killed it. Then she got Mind’s Eye down and went once around the table. Three extra cards. Words of War hit the table, and she could burn or draw every upkeep. Then Words of Waste. Every turn, every opponent discarded a card. Everyone’s hands were empty really quickly, at which point the combo got really nuts. Mind’s Eye triggers when an opponent draws a card. If you replace that draw with Words of Waste, you can force opponents to discard after drawing a card, but before their main phase. Unless they are playing Instants, that is a lock. In the past, the only things that could force discard during your upkeep were strange, three-card combos like Ravenous Rats, Corpse Dance, and something to sacrifice the Rats to – and that took a lot of mana. This is two mana per upkeep, and two cards to do it.
Once she drew a second Mind’s Eye, this just got wild. We still had empty hands and were discarding during our upkeeps, and she was outdrawing us four to one. Once her hand was full, she just hit us with Words of War.
I don’t have her full decklist, but it was probably based on her R/B Specters deck. Words, Mind’s Eye, tutors, Lightning Bolts, Hymn to Tourach, some Specters, maybe Terminate, Flametongue Kavu, and Sol Ring…. I have talked about her Specter deck in the past, check my archives.
Ingrid’s comment:”Mind’s Eye was always worth playing. At the worst, it immediately drew out a Counterspell or any artifact destruction a player had in hand. At best, I won games by virtue of outdrawing everyone else. On average, with everyone gunning for it, I drew three to five extra cards, and that was often enough to swing a game in my favor.”
Mind’s Eye. Get yours now.
To wrap up, here are some of my favorite answers to Mind’s Eye, by color.
Obviously, there are more ways of killing artifacts, but these are the ones I like best for multiplayer games. If you have a different favorite artifact killer, play that. Just play something, because you are going to see more artifacts in your group from now on.
May your Mind’s Eye see clearly, and may you always have something to poke in your opponents’.