Monday, December 14, 2009

Worldwake: Getting the Land Back Together.

Worldwake is still more then a month away, and we have very few reliable cards at this point, but of course the rumors are running rampant. One card that we know to be correct, Celestial Colonade, has really started teh rumor mills running at double speed.

That's right folks, this land really does have a little bit of everything. Not only is it an aligned dual land, but it is also a man land. When activated it becomes a 4/4 w/u elemental creature, with flying and vigilance. You read that right it has vigilance, which means it can swing in on the attack, and still be tapped for mana mid combat. I think this really accounts for the high activation cost, and provides a huge versatility for the creature/land. This allows you to cast nearly a half dozen mid-combat tricks is standard alone, and who knows how many more activated abilities. I can here you already, "So what, I'd never cast Constricting Tendrals anyway!".

That may be true, and you would get no argument from me, but things like Brave the Elements, Harm's Way, Jump, Path to Exile, Shieldmate's Blessing, Silence, and even Unsummon, could easily be put to use during a combat trick These are just the options which would be open if you had no other mana sources available, not to mention everything you could do int he second main phase. Net result is this may be the most versitle land Wizards has printed since Revised. On the down side, it does come into play tapped, and thus creates a potentialy huge tempo loss, but it may still be just the thing W/U control deck needs to be a finisher.

This has created a lot of speculation about the implied cycle of lands. While some people seem to thing we will see a full 10 card aligned/enemy cycle, I think the best we can hope for is the aligned pairs in a small set. The real question will be what the other activated creatures look like?

Anther card which I think casts a shadow for the set is Leatherback Baloth. This monster is hyper efficient with a cmc of 3 and a combined power and toughness of 9! What is really interesting here is the triple green casting cost. If this isn't a sign of pushing mono-color in standard, then I don't know what is. This easily could have been 2gg or even 4g, and still have been a very efficient creature, but instead they opted to make this a card which must go in a heavily green based deck. In order for this card to stay on or above the curve, it must hit the table by turn 4, so a single color splash is about as far as you could stretch the mana base, and still be sure of getting this out when it mattered. Cards like the M10 basic matter lands, will become even more important, allowing the most efficient cards in Worldwake to still be played above the curve with an aligned splash color. I think this also shows a pretty clear course to preprint the M10 lands, and bring out the enemy pair cycle in M11.

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