New Phyrexia, Big Red, Stuff We Liked This Week… and Vibrators

Flores had a solid article this week on DailyMTG.com recapping some cool Regionals decks, but it’s mostly invalidated by the chart that starts the article. You could play any of these spiffy decks to come out of Regionals.

…but if you want to have the best chance of winning, you should play Caw-Blade. Bleh.

There’s also one line in there that absolutely drove me nuts. “[U/G] Genesis Wave is arguably the most powerful deck in the metagame…” Wait a second, it is? Who is arguing this? Everyone I know would argue RUG (or maybe Reid’s BUG list) is probably the most powerful deck in the field, while Caw-Blade is obviously the best deck in the field, so what’s going on here?

What’s that you say? The U/G Wave deck is a Flores creation? It’s the deck he switched to after deciding the Mono-White deck he touted on Friday at SCG – the deck he said on the podcast beats everything – wasn’t good enough? Nice Job, Idiot? I’m so confused – there’s just too much spin for my brain to understand.

From what I’ve seen looking at the Regionals data, Big Red is the deck that has impressed me the most. A number of players seemed to do well with this deck across the U.S., and it has plenty of versatile answers to Kor Firewalker.

Tommy Luke’s Big Red
22  Mountain
2  Tectonic Edge
2  Inferno Titan
4  Kuldotha Phoenix
4  Obsidian Fireheart
4  Burst Lightning
4  Everflowing Chalice
4  Koth of the Hammer
4  Lightning Bolt
4  Sphere of the Suns
2  Staggershock
4  Tumble Magnet

Sideboard
4  Brittle Effigy
3  Pyroclasm
3  Ratchet Bomb
1  Slagstorm
3  Traitorous Instinct
1  Wurmcoil Engine

PV’s Playhouse – Early Thoughts on New Phyrexia
Paulo’s thoughts on a number of the spoiled cards are very insightful, and it’s interesting to see the perspective of a guy who is really a tuner/efficiency expert as opposed to someone like Chapin, who tends to make his early looks at cards more hypothetical and creative. This is particularly true when he’s expressing negative feelings on cards like Torpor Orb or Beast Within – gotta have some faith that Paulo might be right when he says something isn’t good enough. Slightly disheartening that he also says from the cards he’s seen so far, *gulp* Caw-Blade is the deck the benefits the most.

That article used to contain pretty pictures, but I guess CFB had to take them down because they are still bound by their NDA restrictions. The article certainly loses something without even the text of the spoiled cards to look at. Oh well, good thing I have the stupid NPH Godbook on my computer.

As I noted on Twitter, though I was initially very reticent, I think NPH is fascinating. Phybrid mana is going to be extremely skill-testing, and brings life into play as a resource in a way rarely seen before. We used to use it for drawing cards mostly, now you are using it for casting spells and activating abilities. (Landfall did this with ‘extra’ lands too – very clever stuff.)  As someone who has been playing a lot of red recently, I really like the extra tools we’re receiving in that area, though I’m starting to think most red decks may have to maindeck artifact removal for fear of getting rolled by Sword of War and Peace and/or Batterskull.

Yes, Reid Duke, yes yes yes! This is what you should be doing!

You should also read Alexander Shearer on why Surgical Extraction ain’t all that. (And a bag of chips. And 3 snaps in Z formation. You know how it goes, girl.)

Finally, while I don’t know if I wholeheartedly recommend Gerard’s article, it’s difficult not to show love to at least the video sections at the end. Gerard was born to be on/behind the camera and involved in goofy stuff. Here’s just the Conley Woods piece, but the rest are either (unpolished) gems or train wrecks that are hard to look away from.

Random Stuff
The spoiling of New Phyrexia actually sucks ass, and the only site it helped at all was MTGSalvation, at the cost of literally every other Magic site on the planet including DailyMTG.com. Preview season has been blown out of the water, all the excitement of carefully calculated information drips is gone, all the smaller sites have lost the enormous hit boosts previews bring… it’s just a waste of awesome.

I’m glad to see Michael Hetrick writing again, this time over at ChannelFireball. The SCG Talent Search didn’t work out for him, but he has too much talent to keep down for long.

Was also nice to see Michael Jacob writing again over on SCG.

The Magic Online Force of Will situation is a bit messy. Apparently Worth Wollpert made this post back in 2008 regarding never reprinting FoW in the Master’s Editions, etc. http://bit.ly/foSAn3 Legacy is just starting to take off online and it’s an open and exciting format, but Force of Will (along with Wasteland) is the staple of the format and already at 130 tix. (Yes, I know dual lands etc are far cheaper online than in real life, but the potential for a hugely vibrant online legacy scene is there if they could just knock the prices down on Force (and maybe LED).

While Worth has pretty clearly stated FoW will not be tied in to a future Master’s Edition, that does not mean it can’t or won’t appear elsewhere. Part of the beauty of MTGO is that you can address supply deficiencies via promos, prize payouts (like they did with IPA), or even running the right draft queues, thereby making entry into various formats (except Standard – stupid Jace), relatively simple. We’re so close to an awesome, explosive Legacy online format – it just needs the tiniest push to make it happen.

In other (still MTG-related) news, surprise clitoris when reading/viewing something normally isn’t quite as appalling to me as shock dong (think next to John. C Reilly’s head in Walk Hard: The Dewey Cox Story), but it does when it’s a) in a Magic article and b) the person involved is Darwin Kastle’s girlfriend. Special thanks to Dane Young for scarring me.

No, I’m not linking you. No, really. Even I have to draw the line somewhere. Here, have some pictures of Andy Roddick’s wife instead.

I have nothing witty to say about this next piece, but I felt the need to link to it as an element of positive change in the world.

“ The newest model on the shelves is the Tri-Phoria ($39.99), created by the condom company Trojan after a study the company conducted in 2008 in partnership with the Center for Sexual Health Promotion at Indiana University revealed that over half of American women had used vibrators, and of that group, nearly 80 percent had shared them with their partners. James Daniels, vice president for marketing at Trojan, said: “The idea really came from consumers. They kept telling us vibrators, vibrators. And we just laughed. And then we realized they were serious. 

Never again will Alex Shvartsman be stigmatized when trying to get through airport security while carrying a vibrator. (Also guys, read the quote above again. Girls like vibrators. They use them with partners. *lightbulb*)

Music Time
I linked this on Twitter last week, but that doesn’t mean I’ve been able to stop listening to it. John Legend covered Adele’s Rolling in the Deep by turning it into a spiritual. Gorgeous.

This is the other song from last week I can’t stop listening to- Ellie Goulding’s Lights, remixed by Bassnectar. (Yes, I know the freerunning training gym used it as well. That’s where I got it from in the first place via former Magic R&D member and current Darkspore programmer Paul Sottosanti @psotto).

Speaking of remixes, some of you seemed to enjoy the Robyn song I linked in the Mailbag. Here’s the Trentemoller remix of Konichiwa Bitches (complete with trippy video).

One last song, and the prettiest of the lot. Rosie Thomas and Sufjan Stevens singing Much Farther to Go. Trust me on this one.

–CardGame
@mixedknuts on Twitter

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4 responses to “New Phyrexia, Big Red, Stuff We Liked This Week… and Vibrators

  1. @ “Chapin, who tends to make his early looks at cards more hypothetical and creative”

    Although Patrick Chapin is a hell of a writer and I like his articles very much, I don’t pay much attention to his set reviews, because he tends to look at cards through rose-colored glasses and overvalue their power level (BTW: Mike Flores shows the same tendency). LSV’s or Conley’s set reviews are usually much more accurate.

    • I actually haven’t seen the porn parody for Demolition Man, but I’m sure it has an entertaining name. Shock Dong is when you are going along pleasantly doing whatever – something that should not generally involve seeing dong – and BAM, there it is. Your brain goes WTF and then you are like OMG SHOCK DONG.

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