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Magical Misconceptions
Paul's Perspective
06.29.11

Misconceptions abound in a game as diverse and complicated as Magic, today I thought I would take the time to get up on my high horse and tell you why a lot of newer players are wrong and I will give a blow by blow explanation for each point, the inspiration for this article is the reoccurrence of players I see making the same mistakes everyone is entitled to opinions but when it comes to cards such as these people’s opinions are wrong.

 

#1 Life Gain is Awesome

Yes and no in multiplayer cards such as Congregate can gain you such a large volume of life it is easy to stay in the game and mop up other players but with the exception of Congregate cards that just gain you life are bad. Nourish is a bad card Kitchen Finks is not I will elaborate. Nourish is a one shot card Kitchen Finks gains you multiple life and is a relevant creature to block and attack with multiple times one card sees tournament play the other does not. Cards that gain only life are really bad and see little to no play they have no effect on the board and are cards that help you not lose instead of win. Leave the lifegain to cards such as Soul Warden which can always turn sideways and gains you a lot of life for a minimal investment. One shot cards that gain life are bad and you should not play them with Congregate being the exception that proves the rule. Try replacing cards in your deck that only gain life with creatures or spells that gain life and do other things as well.

 

    

 

#2 Pain Lands are Bad

In comparison to the original duel lands yes but a large percentage of players are turned off by paying life for your mana and would instead rather run basic lands, while sticking to basics has its own set of advantages and disadvantages, the pain lands and by that I mean the cards such as Cave of Kolios and Yavimaya Coast help fix your mana when paying a handful of life isent relevant in the course of the game picture this would you rather be mana screwed or lose a couple life over the course of the game? And when you get the colors you need it can tap for colorless to no damage for you, Wizards has strayed away from printing these cards in core sets due to some players not liking the fact you have to pay life. I personally feel they should of kept printing it until players realized how good these cards are and how wrongly they had been evaluating them these cards are budget priced and can provide important mana fixing, they are still good cards. Anyone who tells you otherwise is wrong.

 

    

 

#3 Fireblast is a Bad Card.

This is a more specific example but one I came into recently, a friend lets just call him Schmuck asked me “what are some great cards for a red deck?” I said “you play burn spells correct?” My friend responded “of course” I responded “Fireblast and Grim Lavamancer are some of the best cards in red” my friend upon looking at Fireblast responded “that’s bad card” suffice to say I went into the scenarios where sacrificing lands doesn’t mater and this also applies to cards such as Shard Volley, red decks can play out cheap threats land don’t require much land at all meaning cards that say sacrifice lands don’t matter the fact you can play it for zero mana after you have tapped yourself out firing spells at your opponents face. It doesn’t matter if this card or others require you to sacrifice if it ends the game it does not matter at all. I chose Fireblast as an example of resource related cards why new players shy away from things that lose them life or cost them a permanent they don’t see the true powerful and potential cards like Dark Confidant, Fireblast, Bitterblossom, and Phyrexian Arena are some of the best cards made in recent memory and players overlook their power. It does not matter how low your life is as long as you win and cards such as Sign in Blood and Bitterblossom help you win, it doesn’t matter what you have to sacrifice as long as you win this is a lesson players need to learn and understand because if they don’t see the power of these cards their opponents surely will.

 

    

 

#4 Mill is so Powerful

This came up upon the spoiling of the new Jace Memory Adept some players cry milling 10 cards for zero loyalty is too good. I am here too say not only is it not too good, it is not good. Mill decks and I am talking from a competitive standpoint here are not very good. With the recent exceptions of Turbo Fog, and Sanity Grinding and perhaps Bloodcrank decks milling is a bad strategy. Imagine your opponent starts out at 60 life congratulations you are playing a mill deck. Imagine you flip over an Eldrazi or even a some sort of Collosus, Blightsteel or otherwise it’s going to be very hard for you to win at all. Now take a look at all the decks that want cards in their graveyard and finally look at cards such as Tome Scour. Milling has no immediate impact on the board and overall is not the most effective outside of limited play or possibly casual. Don’t get me wrong I enjoy mill as much as the next guy but realize mill is not good and is certainly not too good.

 

 

#5 Book Burning

Another personal experience this card does not function whether or not your opponents have the physical card Book Burning it is whether or not they have the card deal the damage or mill themselves. This is one of the most infuriating cards and years after its printing due to its convoluted and confusing wording people still misplay it and cause me to suffer an aneurism.

 

    

 

Well that is all my blood pressure can stand for today hopefully I have adequately demonstrated and proven false some common Magic related misconceptions if you have any other misconceptions you know of or disagree with my assertions in this column feel free to shoot me an email at PlatinumFUBU5@hotmail.com

 

    

 

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