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TheBoxer's Spoiler Review Smorgasbord Part 2

There have been a lot of new spoilers over the past few days so I'm going to focus on ones not revealed in the draft event in this article and someone on this site (possibly me) will write about those in a different article.

Murky Tentaclesis: This is an interesting payoff for Revenge that seems geared towards draft and not constructed. The rate is terrible and it inherits the inconsistency of Revenge. You never know when you want to trade it off because you never know when a Revenge card will be next drawn. In essence you're doubling down on the RNG of revenge. This is not a place I want to be.

Sewer Crocodile: This may look unassuming but you don't have to do that much work to make it good. Grazer and Crack trigger it twice, and any Corrupted unit dying triggers it. 3 power to get 6 health is a pretty good deal. I wouldn't build around this card but it's one to keep on eye on if you're building a deck with those cards I listed above. If you can regularly have this be a 3/6 Decay for 3, that's not a bad rate.

Natural Order: Not much to say here, obviously not going to see constructed play. Even if I knew this was always the top card after Revenge it would still be bad.

Zaxo Leviathan: This thing is huge and punishes people for killing it and out of all the units in the game this is one of the best to have in play. I'm not exactly sure how to get it into play: it could be Ramp or Reanimator but this can get out of hand really quickly when it dies. You can even play some Monuments to get rid of unneeded power in the late game and get better entombs. Move over Great Kiln Titan (sorry Jez2718) this is the new best sentinel in the game.

Wandering Beholder: Eye Strain: the card. Seriously I know 5f stuff is cool but it hurts to look at this card. I hope it never sees play. Which it won't because a 3/3 Decay, Overwhelm (and possibly Aegis, Double Damage, and Lifesteal) for 1 is not worth the enormous hoops you have to jump through. I've played 5 faction before but this isn't a reason to do it again.

Crown Patroller: This is not the most exciting card in the set but the rate is there. It's good early and useful late, and also enables Justice Etchings and can be fetched with Crownwatch Press-Gang. There's a lot of good things going on here and I expect it to at least see play in Expedition.

Bartholo's Keepsake: Unless you have JJ this is strictly worse than Scheme which is not a great start. If you do have JJ this becomes more interesting. You could play this in a Ramp deck with Lost Scroll and have it act as a ramp/Scheme split card. I think the unit/weapon text is mostly irrelevant because decks that play a large number of cheap units won't want to waste time with card filtering.

Volatile Grenadin: Cards like this that give your opponent a choice are almost always unplayable and this card is no exception. Your opponent will always pick the choice that is best for them so you always get the worst of the two options. Because of the influence this is coming down on turn 3 at the earliest in any reasonable deck. A 5/5 or a 2/2 plus 4 damage to the face on turn 3 is not that exciting. If they have removal they can make it a 5/5, if not they can take 4 and ignore it.

Rust Machine: This does not seem like enough of a payoff for me to want to build around big spells. Ramping out a 5 drop on 4 is kind of cute but Rust Machine is too fragile to rely on for that. I don't expect this to see much play. I'm also disappointed that the Rustlings aren't Grenadin.

Worldy Cleric: This is a bad blocker and only gains a large amount of life in the late game. Neither of these are traits I want for a stabilizer. There's no way I'd ever play this before Lunar Magus or Combrei Healer.

Master Conjurer: As we've seen with Cozin, a 1/5 for 3 is not that bad of a rate. It blocks well in the early game and gives value in the late game. A major problem however is that this wants you to be both heavy Time (to play it on time) and heavy Primal (to activate its ability). You also have to play a lot of spells. I'm not convinced a deck with all those requirements currently exists or will exist with the release of Argent Depths.

From Elements: Efficient removal early and 2-for-1 unit late? Sign me up! This is a flexible card that can both prolong the game and help close it. Unlike most removal spells this isn't dead against control which is a huge upside. If FTP ever comes back on the menu I expect this to be an important role-player.

Epoch Infestation: 10/10 for 5 is not breaking any formats. We're long past the point of raw stats mattering on anything that costs more than 3. The surge ability is hard to evaluate but who know maybe some combo deck finds a way to make use of it. I'm doubtful but you never know, there could be some new Warp Forge deck based around Epoch Infestation.

Tavrod, Auric Financier: The name makes you compare this card with Tavrod's previous iteration but they are very different types of cards. The old Tavrod died to removal without value, while This one is a big unit that gives you value when it dies. It's hard to rate the first ability without playing with Tavrod, but I think it's deceptively better than it looks. Not that you should build around it, but killing all 0 attack units makes it hard for sacrifice decks to chump block and stay alive.

Jotun Bonebreaker: At first I kind of ignored this card but my teammate MurderOfCrowss pointed out that depending on the implementation this could be a great Scream target. If Bonebreaker counts previously discarded cards, then every time this enters the battlefield it gets +10/+10. That's a lot of damage! I also think this could see play in a fair expedition deck as a top end for aggressive midrange decks. I believe if you have an empty hand the Surge will simply draw a card. If you have only power in hand it's not as powerful but still will filter your power into real cards. Discarding randomly before drawing is significantly better than the other way around.

Ubsat, the Savior: It was Mgallop who wisely pointed out that cards with more influence than power in their cost should be treated as costing power equal to the sum of the influence then giving back some power. As such this is a 5 drop that gives you 1 power back. We've seen this effect with Ghar and it really wasn't that impressive. However Ghar was tempo negative where a 6/5 on 5 that gains some life is a good stabilizer. This could make the difference but either way this will be a niche card.

Tasbu, the Tempter: I'm not convinced Tasbu's ability is actually an upside. I don't want to be drawing cards from my opponent's aggro deck when I'm playing midrange. Even if your opponent's void does match up with your strategy, shuffling cards into your deck is never something you should exhaust resources for (except occasionally against Mill). Unlike the name says, this card is not very tempting.

Wretched Rats: A 3 health 4 drop that slowly gains more attack over time is not very exciting. There are going to be better ways to stabilize than this unit which will often die in combat unless blocking a 1 or 2 drop. Giving a unit in you hand a buff and Lifesteal is cute, but the power level is too low on this card.

Ijin, Walking Armory: If this gave every unit a +4/+4 weapon it would have potential. But as is Ijin is fragile and doesn't do enough and I think attacking to gain J influence is unreliable and should be mostly disregarded. Ijin doesn't' fit in aggro because of how slow she is and doesn't fit in midrange because your units should be big enough already.

That's it for today, but I'll be back soon with more spoiler reviews.


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Timothy Chambers


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