Shades are usually pretty good in formats that
can support midrange decks. They encourage you
to attack before tapping any mana for spells,
which is a good play anyway. And in most cases,
they can potentially grow to a comparable size
of just about anything you'd expect to see on
the field at that point in the game, if you're
willing to spend most or all of your mana on it.
The question is, do you want to spend that much
mana on a big attack, or do you want to save
some for your spells (or to pump the Shade on
someone else's turn in case an opponent has a
The fact that Gate lands, of any color, also
pump the Shade is an interesting idea, but on a
Shade it's not really an improvement. Shades
require lots of black mana, to the point that
they only really work in monoblack decks.
Gateway Shade is probably the first Shade that
works fine in a multicolor deck, but only if you
run lots of Gates. And chances are most of your
Gates tap for black mana anyway, unless you're
running some sort of five-color Gate theme deck.
If that's the case, your whole deck is probably
built on an unstable premise and this card isn't
going to save it.
This week, we're looking at cards from Gatecrash
that like Gates and use those Gates in different
ways. I'd better change the angle of this review
a little, because I'm afraid if I write "Gate"
one more time, my head or that of a reader will
explode. The thing I like about this card is
that you can use it in either a mono-black deck
or a deck with lots of the relevant land type,
and how each offers a different benefit (ie. it
doesn't really have one ability that looks like
the down-market cousin of the other, arguably
aside from the need to play lands that come into
play tapped). Most creatures with the Shade type
don't work so well in multi-colored decks, so
you may want to try and take advantage of that.
Today's card of the day is Gateway Shade which
is a three mana 1/1 Black that for one Black
gets +1/+1 until end of turn or +2/+2 by tapping
an untapped Gate you control. Shades
traditionally belong in mono-Black decks, so
gaining additional benefit from playing Gates
which can add a splash of another color, is a
nice benefit. Even with that this isn't
dramatically different from the other shades and
the cost of casting and maintaining it will keep
it from making many competitive appearances.
For Limited nearly every deck will be
multiple colors which drastically weakens
Gateway Shade and Gates are uncommon and any in
your Sealed or in booster may not be a color
combination you will play. Even with those
issues it is playable as a later game threat to
spend excess mana and makes for a solid topdeck.
Naturally the deck should be as focused on Black
mana as possible if this is included, which
gives an edge to Booster, though Sealed is more
likely to have an in-guild Gate. It is worth
including if the deck is going to be half Black
or more and particularly if a Gate or two is
available, making it a midrange draft in Booster
depending on earlier picks.
Welcome to a new week of card of the day
reviews here at Pojo.com. We begin the week
looking at Gateway Shade from Gatecrash. Gateway
Shade is an uncommon black creature shade that
costs two generic and one black mana and is a
1/1. Gateway Shade has the shade ability of
tapping a black mana to give it +1/+1. However
Gateway Shade also says that you may tap an
untapped gate you control to give Gateway Shade
I have always been a fan of shades. They can be
very useful when you have the mana. Gateway
Shade can be even more impressive with it's
tapping of an untapped gate for a +2/+2. When
properly used, that can be devastating with just
two or three gates in play.
Definitely a good choice for limited play, and a
decent choice in constructed.