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Monday, March 1, 2010

Very First Rise of the Eldrazi Preview!

Visitors to today's Magic Arcana on the WotC Magic homepage were treated to a surprise Rise of the Eldrazi preview!
Picture comes from www.mtgsalvation.com
For anyone who can't read the text (the picture can be a bit small at times):

Kozilek, Butcher of Truths
Legendary Creature - Eldrazi
When you cast Kozilek, Butcher of Truths, draw four cards.
Annihilator 4 (Whenever this creature attacks, defending player sacrifices four permanents.)
When Kozilek is put into a graveyard from anywhere, its owner shuffles his or her graveyard into his or her library.
Mythic Rare

So we've got a few new things going on with Kozilek (and presumable, the other Eldrazi):

1) Colorless...but not an Artifact Creature: Apparently the Eldrazi don't fit into any mana color. They're some sort of supernatural beings, I guess, with no need to side with a color of mana. They're not artificial, though, so they're not Artifacts either. They're just...colossal old beings.

2) New Keyword: Annihilator: I'm guessing this is an Eldraz-exclusive mechanic. Annihilator X apparently means "Whenever this creature attacks, defending player sacrifices X permanents." On a 10-mana creature, that's not bad. If you pay the whole 10 (or a bit less) and you attack, don't you deserve some sort of bonus for accomplishing that? Besides, it's Legendary, so you can't have more than 1 of him in play at one time (unlike another certain colorless fattie)

3) Darksteel Colossus meets Feldon's Cane: In a new take on the "When [this] goes to the graveyard from anywhere" ability, we get the "shuffle it" part replaced with "shuffle your graveyard". Hmm...a new anti-mill card at Mythic maybe? I'd consider running one in the Sideboard if I were too concerned with Mill (and it wouldn't make a half-bad attacker, either. ;)  )

4) Extended Art Frame: You know how the Planeswalkers' artworks seem to encompass the whole card except for a bit of a color border around the card? Welcome to the creature version! And who knows? Maybe Mythics from here on can look like this? It certainly makes the creature look big and foreboding...just like a Mythic creature should!

I like this card. It pretty well defines what Mythic meant to be: Big, splashy, and huge effects that can't be printed at any other rarity due to power concerns. Will it see any tournament play? If it were an artifact, I'd say wait for the next set (which is rumored to be a return to Mirrodin). Without the artifact part, maybe Eye of Ugin mixed with good old fashioned green mana ramp will make him a house for some aggro strategy. But I wouldn't make this the next Jace, the Mind Sculptor or Baneslayer Angel in terms of price. I say it'll see Abyssal Persecutor-type levels: $20-$25 early, dropping to $15 a month after release and maybe settling around $10 if a tournament deck hasn't used him before then. (Although I have to admit, the potential to keep re-using your library late in the game is pretty tempting...)

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