March 11 2016 Friday at 12:07 PM

Breaking News - Duels gets it's first taste of rotation

Extra!  Extra!  Read all about it!  Mwonvuli Acid-Moss, Jagged-Scar Archers, Perilous Myr and Foundry Street Denizen get the BAN HAMMER!

As these cards are part of the starter box, we didn’t actually pay any earned gold for them, so Wizards can make swaps here without any argument from us - we didn’t earn these cards, they were gifts for downloading the game.

I am personally very excited to see these changes.  As a player of paper Magic, seeing cards come and go from a format is awesome and creates new opportunities for cards that didn’t get as much play in the past.  While several cards in the starter box are changing, let’s cover the big ones -

Veggies for Moss

Ding-dong the witch is dead!  Acid-Moss never made sense in this game.  It does promote exactly what Wizards should have been avoiding in a game where getting mana screwed is already the big pain point for new players.  Whether Acid-Moss is overpowered or not doesn’t matter anymore, the argument is over, the card is on the way out.  In its place we get Explosive Vegetation, which opens a new can of worms - Isn’t Vegetation better than Acid-Moss?  True, Acid-Moss could disrupt your mana base, but two lands on the battlefield of a Ramp deck is likely better than one land on, one land off.  This move doesn’t cripple Ramp at all, if anything it makes it faster and more consistent, and makes the mana fixing even better!  Don’t wring the death knell for Ramp, this is a hidden upgrade.  The biggest impact this has on the game is (a) something new to complain about on forums, and (b) decks trying to answer ramp decks can now count on their mana, so the game is about finding the right answers, not getting their lands right.

Lifespring Druid for Archers

Not only is Ramp not dead, it takes a good card from Elves and gains a mana accelerant creature.  First off, it is cool that at long last we get a “mana dork” into Duels.  It is not really the one we wanted, as three mana for a 2/1 is pretty bad, but I bet it will see play.  Normally though, you are better off with Natural Connection if you are being competitive.  Elves takes the gut shot, this is a deck that got no love from B4Z, likely won’t get love from Shadows, and was a pretty barren deck to begin with.  Now I don’t know if just any player can reach rank 40 with Elves.  We shall see if the proud elven tribe can survive the loss of their Jagged brother.

Bronze Sable for Perilous Myr

Wow.  This has to be the ugliest swap of them all.  We go from format all-star Perilous Myr to vanilla 2/1 piece/o/junk Bronze Sable.  I don’t think Sable even makes the cut in Thopters.  Now Thopters will be OK, Myr wasn’t an overwhelming part of their gameplan and they will have two-drop options.  This move takes away a beloved toy from Rakdos Thieves, Jund Value, Golgari Value, just about any deck that tried to abuse Evo Leap, and that includes all the Crats lists (which hurts my heart).  There are enough good cards that all these strategies will survive, but they can’t lean on the Myr for removal and burn-out options, and that will hurt the decks.

Goblin Balloon Brigade for Foundry Street Denizen

Described as a proactive measure to keep Red from getting too good with the release of Shadows and Oath, this move has me wondering just what these amazing Red cards are that they have to remove Foundry Street.  More token makers?  Devils and Devils?  Red Aggro always survives, but taking Denizen does nerf some of the more silly draws.  That said, if you watch my stream you saw my hand of all four Denizens lose to Temur Monsters, so it is not like this card is broken.  Still, I welcome the change.

Some other stuff and things -

Gatecreeper Vine and all the Gates get removed for Sylvan Ranger (it is an Elf!) and a bunch of tapped lands.  This makes sense, we aren’t on Ravnica, get these Gates out of here.

In the video the swap of Acid-Moss for Explosive Vegetation is described as “no surprise”.  It is a freakin’ surprise, to EVERYONE who plays, because it is the first sign in the history of Duels that you give a crap about the meta and game experience, so yeah, OF COURSE WE ARE SURPRISED!

You don’t have to beat the Ai bot if a player concedes to earn your gold and rank.  Yay!  Less salt related to concessions I hope.

These changes improve Ramp, they don’t weaken it.  Elves lost a key creature, Myr removes some amount of reach (ability to end the game apart from attacking) from all decks, Red lost a fast one-drop, Ramp got a card that lets it Ramp harder and faster.  Obviously Wizards still wants Ulamog (and Kozilek????) to get cast.

Just a quick one-hit news bit, I’m off to watch 18 Cloverfield Lane.

<3 CGB

The End Credits -

Bookmark -

Twitch -

Youtube -

About Duels Diaries -

Awesome Duels resources and recommendations -

Magic Duels Reddit -

No Goblins Allowed -

Hakeem928’s YouTube Channel -

Mobius’s YouTube Channel -

Nighthawk233’s YouTube Channel -

Legenvd’s YouTube Channel -

Twitch Magic Duels -