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Pojo's Magic The Gathering
Card of the Day

Daily Since November 2001!

Necropotence
Image from Wizards.com

Necropotence
- Eldritch Moon

Reviewed Aug. 26, 2016

Constructed: 5
Casual: 4.5
Limited: 5
Multiplayer: 4.5
Commander [EDH]: 4.5

Ratings are based on a 1 to 5 scale:
1 - Horrible  3 - Average.  5 - Awesome

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Card of the Day Reviews 


David Fanany

Player since 1995

Necropotence
 
This would be one of my personal candidates for the title of the most unfair card ever printed. Mana Drain might be more demoralizing, and Sol Ring might be more format-warping (I'm not entirely sure about that, but it might be). But there are very few that flaunt the fundamental rules of Magic as flagrantly as Necropotence does - even Ancestral Recall is, barring other restricted cards, a one-time effect. Skipping your draw step is a drop in the bucket compared to the endless stream that it gives you; consider that it was printed in adjacent sets to Zuran Orb and Ivory Tower. Even today, there are few entirely satisfactory answers to it. Pithing Needle, which is theoretically devastating, nonetheless gives them a window to activate it 19 times in response and have a good chance of finding Nature's Claim or some other thing to do. I actually find it very difficult to give Necropotence a rating: in an environment where it's not banned, landing one on the table means you're effectively playing a different game from your opponent.
 
Constructed: 5/5
Casual: 4/5
Limited: 5/5
Multiplayer: 4/5
EDH/Commander: 4/5

James H. Necropotence (8/26)
 
Rounding off the week is probably one of the most broken Magic cards ever printed. Its power is a function of both its environment and just the effect itself.
 
Necropotence had the good fortune of existing at the same time as Dark Ritual, which enabled a turn 1 Necropotence. Being able to refill your hand at the cost of life is the kind of effect that can propel you very far ahead, and being able to dig out the pieces to your combo also proves to be quite powerful. It's a cheap, reusable, and incredibly fast card-advantage engine, and it's telling that it was the most warping card in Standard and Extended's long history, creating the period known as "Black Summer”. Who cares if you aren't drawing a card normally when you can get a full hand every turn?
 
Today, the Skull is restricted to one in Vintage and playable in EDH, and it's still one of the most horrifying cards to be on the other side of.
 
Constructed: 5 
Casual: 5
Limited: 5
Multiplayer: 5
Commander: 5

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