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Never Bet the Devil Your Red
Paul's Perspective
06.20.11

I am not perfect, I am not a designer, and I do not work for Wizards. As much as I wish these statements were not true does not make it so, the fact that Lighting Bolt is leaving us is much the same. A staple and elegant burn card Lighting Bolt sees play in every format it is legal in perhaps except vintage. Lightning Bolt has been a staple in the game forever that is until it was deemed too powerful and the unimpressive Shock replaced it.

 
 
Lightning Bolt is not being reprinted in M12 and Shock is coming back, for some of us this is shocking (no pun intended) others knew our blissful time with Lighting Bolt could not have lasted forever and were grateful for the chance to harness its amazing power even for so brief a time. I on the other hand hold the opposite view, once we taste the forbidden fruit Shock will no longer due. The drop in power between the cards is evident and I for one don’t believe in the saying which evidently applies here “Better to have loved and lost then to have never loved at all” no it is better to not get a grasp of the power you are missing. I understand Lighting Bolt is “too powerful” and it restricts card design when it comes to direct damage spells I understand retiring it now I just don’t understand bringing it back all. Don’t get me wrong I love slinging cardboard thunder as much as the next player but why tempt us with something that was never meant to be? Like a reunion for one weekend with a past love that then leaves again is the brief time together worth the heartbreak of the departure? I feel it is not, excuse my flowery language and seemingly absurd comparisons but for some players the sudden departure of Lightning Bolt after such a short time together is maddening. The removal of Lightning Bolt also weakens the nature of red decks providing one less tool to make the deck versatile and powerful while creature power creep is on the rise spell power continues to fluctuate, power creep of creatures a will continued to grow the reprint of the titans means it will at least stay at the current level.  This is a problem as there will be fewer cards to combat the insane power creep of creatures. Adding insult to injury is the removal of Mana Leak and the removal of Duress for inferior cards Distress and Negate cards that are in of themselves not horrible but in comparison to the cards they are replacing leave a bad taste in my mouth with their inadequacy.  Mana Leak is behind Counterspell but can still act as an early hard counter to play around due to the dominance of blue in the standard format I can see them wanting to step away from the “unfun” and powerful counters. In a similar vein I suppose players dislike being stripped of cards on their first turn by Duress, Despise is a powerful card in its own right but Duress is the one of the pillars of discard.

 
 
I k now this power lessening is an important part of balancing the game of Magic, but also as I player I don’t always understand the choices made and the why behind them. I have questions but as of now no answers. Spells get weaker and creatures get stronger I can’t be the only one who wants to stare down a Grave Titan while holding two shocks right? While this is a departure from a true column I hope you enjoyed my random rant/musing and that it may  provide a starting point for a discussion involving the nature and the power of cards  and players opinions on the removal of staple cards.
 
Comments and opinions on the article and topics discussed therein as well as ideas for columns can be sent to PlatinumFUBU5@hotmail.com.
 
Also I now have a Youtube channel where I will be uploading various Magic Online videos as well as other items please check it out the account is ThePaulsPerspective and can be located at http://www.youtube.com/user/ThePaulsPerspective?feature=mhee
 
I also am now a registered member of the forums and am eager to discuss your ideas for my columns and Magic in general my handle is PaulsPerspective feel free to shoot me a message on the forum I am looking forward to discussions with fellow players!

 
 

 

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