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Tuesday, May 24, 2011

Dragonic M12 Previews! A Returning Keyword plus a Shards of Alara Reprint

(Scans of cards come from Aaron Forsythe's twitter feed @mtgaaron)

Even though spoiler season for M12 doesn't start for nearly another month (officially, anyway), that hasn't stopped Wizards of the Coast from previewing a few M12 cards in the last few days.

Today, we get to look at a couple new reveals. But first, a couple hints.

1) This new mythic rare Dragon brings back a keyword first seen in Ravnica: City of Guilds block and re-appeared in Time Spiral.

2) This reprint rare Dragon was first seen in Shards of Alara block and has the advantage of being the type of dragon you've always thought about in the fantasy world.

Give up?

For our first new card, what keywords could possibly have been in Ravnica block but also in Time Spiral? We have Convoke, Dredge, Transmute, Bloodthirst, and Graft. Of these, which might be the most Core Set-friendly mechanic?

You guessed it. Bloodthirst is probably the easiest on a new player. "I did damage to you? Okay, then I add [insert number here] +1/+1 counters on this."

The new mythic Dragon brings Bloodthirst back into the foray, supposedly replacing Scry as the "Comeback Keyword of the Year" for the Core Set.


We initially have 7 mana for a 6/6 flier. Normally not that good, right? But if you're on 5 mana and can, I don't know, Lightning Bolt your opponent some damage and have New Phyrexia's Geosurge in hand, it's no longer 6/6 Flying for 7...all of a sudden it's more like 12/12 for 7!

Could it see casual play? Definitely! Could it see tournament play? Standard only, but I could see maybe 1 in a mono-red deck that needs a finisher that's hard to deal with. A lack of Haste hurts, but then that might make it too good for 7 mana?

The other Dragon is a Shards of Alara original. It's a red dragon, it flies, and it firebreathes...literally!

Reintroducing to anyone who wasn't around in Shards of Alara...Flameblast Dragon!!

He's not a bad dragon for casual. 5 power flying in the air isn't anything to sneeze at! But what can be bad is the big, long ability. If you let it attack, your opponent can just dump mana into it and get damage through to you regardless of any blocking! And if they don't block? Well, considering it took 6 mana to cast it, you can expect 5 from the ability and 5 from the attack for a total of 10 damage!

But could it hold up in a tournament? Flameblast Dragon never made waves when it was Standard legal and still doesn't in Extended, so he'll be relegated to the casual tables.

But in casual, if you can't deal with it, good luck surviving!

That's all the previews for now. As more come around, I'll update ASAP. Thanks for reading!

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