People are always going to play with tribal
cards, even if they're weird tribes. Especially
if they're weird tribes. I think something about
the human mind's need to find patterns and make
connections clashes with the creature type on
Magic cards-- 9 times out of 10, a creature's
type is as irrelevant to the game as its flavor
text. But occasionally it does matter, so
players are naturally drawn to the cards that
make it matter, because all the information on a
card should be relevant to the game if it's not
in italics, right?
Rats are a kind of weird tribe. Rat tribal has
pretty much always been part of the game--
remember Swarm of Rats? Pretty much every block
has had at least a few Rats, but there's never
really been an organized Rat deck outside of
Kamigawa block or casual play. The only one I
can think of that caught on was Relentless Rats,
and even that was mostly a gimmick deck. But the
fact that it existed proves just how much people
love tribal, and will take any excuse they can
get to play it.
Pack Rat, that said, is a decent card. It's a
Rat that gets bigger the more Rats you have, and
it makes Rat tokens, and the tokens also get
bigger the more Rats you have. Your opponent
really can't afford to leave it alone, and you
can't afford to just play Pack Rat on turn two.
Wait until you have the mana to play it and use
its ability in one go. That way even if your
opponent has a kill spell, now he needs to kill
the original and the copy.
As I think I've mentioned in this space before,
I mostly play singleton formats - Filth
Casserole, Legacy Filth Casserole, and
Unglued/Unhinged Highlander being my favorites -
so you can't imagine how many years I've been
waiting for a Plague Rats variant that works as
printed in singleton. Nothing against house
errata, but sometimes it's nice to feel like
someone up there is looking out for you. In
casual settings, you'd be surprised at just how
much of a "thing" Rat tribal decks are. You have
access to hand disruption (Ravenous Rats and
Chittering Rats), reusable removal (Throat
Slitter), recursion (Nezumi Graverobber), a card
I consider to be one of the best finishers
control decks have ever had (Ink-Eyes), and
Demonic Tutor with fear (Ratcatcher). Rat tribal
is most certainly a thing.
Now if you'll excuse me, I have a Filth
Casserole deck to build.
Welcome back readers todays card of the day is
a rat and makes more rats. Pack Rat provides a
1/1 body for two mana initially but can grow as
you discard making it grow out of control.
Discard outlets are always good but only when
they don’t have mana activation costs meaning
this rat wont see much play, it does however
present a nasty board position with only one or
two activations but discarding two cards and
paying six mana may not be the most powerful and
is setting yourself up for a Terminus or Supreme
Verdict. In standard Loleth Troll is the king of
discard and has a powerful body making this
creature look bad by comparison I don’t think it
will see any play too much mana to activate. In
modern you can combine with Rat tribal cards but
little else. In legacy and vintage wouldn’t pack
any of these into my deck. In casual and
multiplayer rats are a somewhat popular tribe I
don’t foresee this fitting into Relentless Rats
decks but I can see it as a 1 of in Relentless
Rat based commander decks providing more rats
for cards like Marrow Gnawer. In limited its all
right not the best but if you discard some
Scavange Cards you can sculpt a decent board
presence not suffer too much from card
disadvantage. Overall a card meant strictly for
casual and multiplayer and a niche card at that.
I don’t see it getting there anywhere else.
Today's card of the day is Pack Rat which is a
two mana Black rat with power and toughness
equal to the number of rats you control and for
three can allow you to discard a card from hand
to put a token copy of Pack Rat into play.
This is an interesting change on the Relentless
Rats concept that is better in several ways,
first by counting other types of rats, second by
having the option of a card in hand being a rat
instead of playing dozens of the same card, and
third by having a casting cost of two which
curves nicely with the effect on turn three and
a turn one Typhoid Rats or Drainpipe Vermin.
Overall this is a card with some potential as a
gimmick deck and will be a staple in any casual
rat build, but probably won't be seen much in
the competitive formats.
For Limited a two mana creature that creates
tokens for three out of any unneeded card in
hand, or possibly one with Scavenge, definitely
has value in the format. This is fairly
solid in the early game as without a turn three
play it is a 2/2 attacker on that turn with
another 2/2 rat on defense. Late game with
eight mana you get three 3/3 creatures in one
turn if you have two cards to spare, such as
extra lands or unneeded specialized hate.
If you manage your hand size and keep a few
cards back this is a strong addition to any
Sealed deck and first pick in Booster.
Welcome to another great card of the day review
here at Pojo.com. We continue our look at Return
to Ravnica by looking at Pack Rat. Pack Rat is a
rare black creature rat. Pack Rat costs one
generic and one black mana, and is a */*. Pack
Rat’s power and toughness are equal to the
number of rats you control. Pack Rat also has
the ability of pay two generic and a black mana,
discard a card: Put a token onto the battlefield
that is a copy of Pack Rat.
I clearly feel that the Pack Rat was
printed more for older formats. There are not
many rats in Standard at all, and certainly this
would be the best of them, and that is hardly
worth building a deck around. But, some people
like their rats. And Pack Rat is definitely a
great rat. The ability to clone itself for
relatively little can mean that suddenly there
are a bunch of them.
The thing to do to take complete
advantage is utilizing Parallel Lives and
Flashback cards, should you wish to use this
card in Standard formats. Then you get two 3/3’s
effectively for three mana, more so the next
time you use the ability, and still have the
ability to later on use the card you discarded.
In older formats, I think this guy will
revitalize the older rat decks. A field formerly
owned by Relentless Rats.