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Pojo's Magic The Gathering
Card of the Day

Daily Since November 2001!


Image from Wizards.com

Champion of Stray Souls
- Born of the Gods

Reviewed January 31, 2014

Constructed: 1.90
Casual: 3.38
Limited: 2.75
Multiplayer: 3.25

Ratings are based on a 1 to 5 scale:
1 being the worst.  3 - average.  5 is the highest rating

Click here to see all of our 
Card of the Day Reviews 

BMoor

Champion of Stray Souls

The first ability seems to have a lot of potential, but in practice I'm not convinced. Are the creatures in your graveyard that much better than the ones you've got in play? They are if you have a token engine, I suppose, but black doesn't get a whole lot of those. Black does get creatures like Reassembling Skeleton, though, which could be traded up repeatedly, but at five mana per activation, you really need to be playing Casual to make that work. Constructed is just too fast, and Limited has nothing worth comboing with it. The second ability is also nice, but at seven mana you're spending an entire turn just to make the Champion your draw for next turn, and then spending THAT turn recasting the Champion, and then the NEXT turn you can use its ability again. And as a 4/4 for 4BB, you're not running it for anything but its ability. This is a combo piece, plain and simple, and the combo it builds is a slow, grindy combo. You need a slow format to make this worthwhile, and "kitchen-table Casual" is the only one I know of that's slow enough.

Constructed- 1
Casual- 3.5
Limited- 1.5
Multiplayer- 4 

David Fanany

Player since 1995

Champion of Stray Souls
 
Speaking of trope-based design, which Greek myth or creature exactly is this based on? Or are we going to admit that tropes alone can't actually support a whole block? (Now watch Mark Rosewater tell a story about this card next week and totally embarrass me.) Regardless, any kind of setting that can acess a lot of mana will want to take a look at this guy - both of his effects are certainly very powerful, and even if you never use his mass resurrection ability, there are certain decks that simply can't beat a creature that keeps going back to the top of your library. 
 
Constructed: 2/5
Casual: 3/5
Limited: 4/5
Multiplayer: 3/5

Paul

Welcome back readers todays card of the day is a mythic skeleton.  Champion of Stray Souls for competitive environments is very slow and very expensive. Requiring sizable mana investments and having to survive to use his ability is just too much to ask for in competitive environments. True he does have the ability to resurrect himself but at a high mana price tag and the cost of your draw step. This guy is just too big and unwieldy to touch any competitive environments. In casual and multiplayer this guy is amazing being able to bring back powerful creatures and also having a decent sized 4/4 body is nothing to sneeze at. Where this card really shines is in commander decks heavy on the sacrificing theme as this allows you to regrow value creatures or just huge powerful creatures and provides a sacrifice outlet, and a recurable body with a somewhat hefty requirement for recursion. In limited this guys a 4/4 for six which is ok, and if your deck has enough tokens or truly powerful creatures its something to consider. Overall a powerful casual and multiplayer card that helps fill a useful niche.
 
Constructed: 1.5
Casual: 3.5
Limited: 2.0
Multiplayer: 3.0

Michael "Maikeruu" Pierno

Today's card of the day is Champion of Stray Souls which is a six mana Black 4/4 that for five and tapping can sacrifice X other creatures to return X target creature cards from your graveyard to the battlefield and for seven Champion can be put on top of your library from your graveyard.  The second effect is a bit weak and a slow form of regeneration that weakens tempo without card draw support and is mostly a last ditch kind of play.  The first effect is excellent when combined with enters or leaves play abilities, or token creation to use as sacrifice targets.  The cost to play Champion is a bit high to use competitively, but in Commander or more Casual settings one or two solid uses of the effect should win just about any game.  Supported with cards like Gray Merchant of Asphodel, Abhorrent Overlord, Mogis's Marauder, and cards to add them to your graveyard this is a viable and effective deck concept.
 
In Limited the mana cost is reasonable, but having enough targets to make the best use of the effect is more problematic.  Even exchanging one or two creatures for larger threats or strong enters play abilities is enough to make this worthwhile and the 4/4 body, aside from being a possible sacrifice, is a decent size for the format.  The situational power still makes it a first pick in Booster and worth including in a Sealed deck using Black as the primary or secondary color.
 
Constructed: 3.0
Casual: 3.5
Limited: 3.5
Multiplayer: 3.0


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