Wednesday, July 16, 2008

Too Much Land

Land is an interesting part of Magic. Too much or too little land means trouble, but having extra land cards in your hand doesn’t help either. Retrace is a great little Eventide mechanic that lets you use those extra lands. (Retrace - You may play this card from your graveyard by discarding a land card in addition to paying its other costs.)

Clash also helps with your land counts by smoothing your mana curve. (Clash - Each player reveals the top card of his or her library, then puts that card on the top or bottom. A player wins if his or her card had a higher converted mana cost.) While you may only win a clash about 25 percent of the time, at least you get to stack the top card of your deck. For better or worse clash also helps your opponent. Clash minimizes the negative aspect of land and smoothes your land counts.

Retrace is probably my favorite mechanic in Magic. Personally I think land is an old, arcane concept that Magic should get rid of. (Many people think Magic should also get rid of haste, but I like it.) I think you should be able to play any card as a land. A green card would be transformed into a Forest. The Marvel/DS VS trading card game does not use land and effectively lets you play any card as a land.

Retrace is good because it turns the disadvantage of extra land into an advantage. Although land is a necessary evil, Magic is still getting better and better. I can’t wait for Magic 2.0 (that’s a joke).

6 comments:

Mr.Chaos, unofficial beta tester. said...

Retrace sounds good. and some cards with retrace may be so useful that you want several lands in your hand.

Oh, well. 2 more weeks until I get my hands on those cards and see if they really work as we hope they will.

I am waiting for MTG Forge V2. (And that's no joke) ;-)

Forge said...

People post more comments on my programming articles that my Magic entries. I probably know more about programming than just pure Magic, lol.

Silly Freak said...

I wanted to post a comment, but whenever I thought about i was at work.

however, I think land makes magic more interesting. If you could play any card as a land, you could play a six mana spell on turn six every game. this isn't strictly bad, but it makes it less a challenge to trim your mana curve.
another example:
you draw shriekmaw on turn four.
1) you have four lands. should you evoke it? if you don't, and draw no land, you missed a turn. if you do, and draw a land, you missed a creature.
2) you have four other cards out replacing the lands. of course, if you can afford it, you wait the turn.
(technically, you get the fourth out that turn. doesn't matter)

on the other side, you have to choose what card you will lay down and can do things as "you can't play ~ as a land". everything has ups and downs, but i like it better as it is.

Gando said...

Lands in hand can be a key to victory in some games even without Retrace. Ever had someone hymn to tourach (or coercion, ostrasize etc) you because you were holding lands? Ever need to feed a wild mongrel or some other discard mechanic on the table(urborg syphon mage)? Lands in hand is not a curse if your deck compensates for the possibility. Its all a matter of perspective...Yes it does suck to run out of playable cards when your opponent has you on the ropes but that is just the nature of the beast. You will lose some games due to bum draws. You may also win games with bum draws but usually only if your opponent is also suffering from said malady or he/she is a worse player.

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