Review: Plated Slagwurm

Draft Priority: 4

Impact: 3

Stack Status: 4
He’s another big bad boy who isn’t doing much elsewhere, but fits right in with the other idiots in the stack perfectly.

Discussion:

*ground explodes and with a roar, a massive wurm appears from the new crater!*

WHATTUP SON IM A SLAGWURM

WHATS IT ALL MEAN? WHY AM I HERE?

NVM LETS GO KILL SOMEBODY

*obscenely loud screams for mercy, smashing sounds, screams are silenced*

STARTED FROM THE BOTTOM NOW WE HERE

*the wurm, now slick with the viscera of its foe, assumes the ever-elusive ‘armless b-boy stance’*

Overall: Four mic crevices out of five

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Review: Pelakka Wurm

Draft Priority: 4

Impact: 5

Stack Status: 4
Pelakka Wurm is one of the best big uncommon beasties in years and sees use in Commander, limited (both WotC and player constructed) and casual Magic everywhere. But there should still be one in just about any stack.

Discussion:

Look at the size of the ‘scale guys’ on this art in the lower left. They couldn’t even use scale birds, so you know this is some serious action. However, I think the scale starts to find of fall apart when you take a cursory look at the background and the wurm seem to be sizing up pretty well next to… scale mountains? A scale river? Or is the wurm flying?

…no. This isn’t a Kamigawa card. It’s not a creature that looks flying but isn’t.

Despite some troubling artwork (or maybe the peyote is starting to work?), Pelakka Wurm is only troubling if you don’t get to play it. This is kind of like a super scaled-up Mulldrifter—it’s fair for the mana, it does all types of good stuff, and it doesn’t violate the colour pie entirely. The difference is this is way cooler because it’s a 7/7 that is trying to eat you.

PELAKKALAKKALAKKALAKKALAKKA

Overall: Four and a half scale rivers out of five

Review: Artisan of Kozilek

Draft Priority: *6*

Impact: *6*

Stack Status: *6*
Stacker Pentecost. Man, there’s been a lot of these lately. I shouldn’t have to explain why. PRO TIP: MOST ELDRAZI WILL GET THIS SCORE

Discussion:

The Eldrazi were supposed to represent sanity-bending, Lovecraftian monsters in Magic that came from beyond our comprehension and squashed worlds without really noticing their existence.  While they certainly captured that feel to me, they also made me wonder is a certain degree of Lovecraftian madness had gotten into the R&D department. They all but confirmed the stranglehold of the Design nWo and to me signaled that what I once understood about creature design was exploded and scattered like Marvin’s brains in Pulp Fiction.

Kicking things off with being a 10/9 for 9 mana, this shit is already a bit wonky, but not terribly out of line I supposed. There seems to be some kind of value compression in Power and Toughness to mana cost once the mana values go beyond 5. But the Artisan also carries a four-mana (often five) ability along with him as an afterthought, and then packs in Annihilator 2 (which I have no idea how to correctly cost).

Did I mention this is COLOURLESS mana, the most worthless of all mana? It’s the pesos of mana. Null Brooch costs six mana and YOUR ENTIRE HAND to replicate the effect of a UU spell. While this is probably the most extreme example of colourless mana needing to trade up to approximate the value of coloured mana, it’s still a thing.

So I don’t understand how cards are valued mana-wise anymore. No big deal. This stuff might even seem normal to people who started playing after Mirrodin. It still blows my mind.

Overall: Five whiny nostalgic Magic players out of five, Stacker Pentecost glare of approval

Review: Chancellor of the Spires

Draft Priority: *6*

Impact: 5

Stack Status: *6*
Stacker Pentecost. This guy is a champion in all kinds of casual Magic, but his mill ability is super-relevant here as the decks are small and games certainly do some down to empty libraries.

Discussion:

A superstar for all kinds of reasons. Herp derp I’m a sphinx? Yep. Free potential massive value spell wen it enters the battlefield? Of course. Big evasive body for your trouble? Of course.

An nWo design from top to bottom, this Chancellor is one of the best Type 4 creatures there is. There’s no cleverness or effort involved. It’s just amazing. Snatch it up.

Overall: Five derps out of five, Stacker Pentecost glare of approval

Review: Denizen of the Deep

Draft Priority: 4

Impact: 4

Stack Status: 4
Resident monster. The Denizen is perfectly at home in the Stack. Please find one for your own. It’s a big, splashy idiot that is fun to play.

First, I think it’s important to draw attention to the clutch use of a ‘scale boat’ on this art. Anson Maddocks (on point as always) draws a big sea monster that turns out to actually be kind of adorable and thinks “aaah shit I need to make it look big. Scale boat.”

Scale boats: Making scale birds look like assholes since Dandan.

Art aside this is a deceptively powerful card. 11/11 stats are straight Tyrannosaurus Flex material, regardless of era. But in the modern Enters The Battlefield: The Game era of nWo design, the Denizen gives you a chance to relive the glorious twelve minutes ago of when you got those enters the battlefield abilities from your Brutalizer Exarch and Tyrant of Discord. It’s not a flawless plan by any means, but it’s a plan, and that’s better and I usually can provide.

Overall: 4 plush eldritch horrors out of five