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 Post subject: Re: Is there any rare card more useless than Awakened Amalgam?
AgePosted: 2018-Feb-06 12:21 am 

Joined: 2014-Apr-03 3:46 am
Age: Drake
Sid the Chicken wrote:
Big fat things get played. Not being superior to LoE is irrelevant.

Sid the Chicken wrote:
Just because there are other playable cards doesn't make Amalgam unplayable either.


The thing is that you are wrong. You can only play 99 cards in your edh deck. So naturally you want the best 99 cards for your deck. There is going to be a cut-off point for cards and LoE has managed make that barely.

Sid the Chicken wrote:
Why are we assuming it has to be played on curve? Why not drop it turn 12, probably as a 10/10, maybe put some equipment or something on it, and start swinging?


If you have 12 mana why not play a good creature like Kozilek, the Great Distortion? 12/12 for 10 with a cast trigger, keyword ability and an activated ability. Seems pretty great.

We don't have evaluate things on the curve but if start doing that we increase the amount of cards we could play and make Amalgam look even worse.

I also don't think that if you need another card + turn 12 for Amalgam to be ok looks particularly good for your argument.

Sid the Chicken wrote:
As with any large thing, there's really only 3 keywords you might want it to have - Trample, Flying and maybe Lifelink. You wouldn't have been looking at it with Vigilance, or something like Extort, and said "WOW! THAT CARD IS GREAT!". Fortunately there are plenty of ways to give your creatures abilities if you want.


Probably not but even with just extort you could at least do something with Amalgam when board gets cluttered.

Sid the Chicken wrote:
At the end of the day, if you don't like the card, you don't like the card, but you not liking it does not make it the worst rare in its own set, let alone the worst rare you could have.


Are you sure about that? Vraska's Scorn is pretty bad but considering that it's a planeswalker deck rare (decks that are designed to be trash) and it tutors up Vraska, Scheming Gorgon which is honestly pretty decent. Commander like Atraxa can ultimate Vraska pretty fast and make use of the +2 ability.

Uktabi_Kong wrote:


Hey at least you tried.


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 Post subject: Re: Is there any rare card more useless than Awakened Amalgam?
AgePosted: 2018-Feb-06 3:23 am 
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Joined: 2006-Dec-31 12:26 pm
Age: Elder Dragon
illuknisaa wrote:
If you have 12 mana why not play a good creature like Kozilek, the Great Distortion? 12/12 for 10 with a cast trigger, keyword ability and an activated ability. Seems pretty great.

We don't have evaluate things on the curve but if start doing that we increase the amount of cards we could play and make Amalgam look even worse.

I also don't think that if you need another card + turn 12 for Amalgam to be ok looks particularly good for your argument.

See, there's your fault -- you don't *need* another card + Amalgam on turn 12. But if you cast Amalgam on turn 12... then you still have 6-8 or so mana available to you to do other things. Sure Kozilek does other stuff... but that's because you're pumping more mana into him than you are into Amalgam. You're shifting the comparisons but not taking these other factors into account.

For the record, I specifically rare-drafted an Awakened Amalgam at FNM last friday - 'cuz I want it for EDH. It's likely going in my Sharuum deck as an undercosted beater.

And you're also comparing the card as if every player has access to every card possible. Perhaps they don't own a Lord of Extinction or Kozilek the Distortion. Maybe they're starting off new and are adding this card to a Commander Precon deck.

And I know this is going to go over deaf ears... but... it's pretty incredible how narrow-minded the arguments against this card are.


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 Post subject: Re: Is there any rare card more useless than Awakened Amalgam?
AgePosted: 2018-Feb-06 4:57 am 
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Joined: 2010-Mar-12 3:20 pm
Age: Elder Dragon
This thread has gone off the rails. :lol:

I don't think anyone is claiming Awakened Amalgam is *good*. In general. it's a bad card. But this is commander, and it has enough going for it that there are going to be decks that want it. Specifically, decks that want large comparatively cheap creatures and care about things being either artifacts, colorless, or both. (And obviously also play few if any duplicate lands.) Those decks exist, so this card is playable.

Furthermore... the initial question was if it's the worst rare. And it's *so* far away from that designation that even including it in that conversation is absurd. It's not even close to being the worst rare for commander in Rivals. Form of the Dinosaur just makes you lose. Even in a deck like Zedruu, it loses you too much life upon casting to be worth playing. And Sphinx's Decree is just utter, useless trash in *every* format.

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 Post subject: Re: Is there any rare card more useless than Awakened Amalgam?
AgePosted: 2018-Feb-06 12:27 pm 
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Joined: 2009-Aug-20 7:49 pm
Age: Elder Dragon
Location: New Hampshire
illuknisaa wrote:
The thing is that you are wrong. You can only play 99 cards in your edh deck. So naturally you want the best 99 cards for your deck. There is going to be a cut-off point for cards and LoE has managed make that barely.


Translation: Any card that doesn't help you win turn 2 is bad. Because I mean, you can only have ONE general, so obviously it must be the best general possible (building for fun, theme, etc is for losers), and therefore the best 99 must be the cards that let that general help you win ASAP. Logically, therefore, it must help you combo off the table before anyone knows what happened or it's unplayable garbage. Message recieved.

kaldare wrote:
Furthermore... the initial question was if it's the worst rare. And it's *so* far away from that designation that even including it in that conversation is absurd. It's not even close to being the worst rare for commander in Rivals.


This.

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 Post subject: Re: Is there any rare card more useless than Awakened Amalgam?
AgePosted: 2018-Feb-06 2:30 pm 
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Joined: 2010-Dec-10 12:16 pm
Age: Elder Dragon
Quote:
Lots of stuff


Summary:

- Awakened Amalgam is a niche card that could see play in some decks ("Hazezon Tamar: Lands Matter" would be my first choice).
- EDH is *not* 60-card tournament magic; nor is it 40-card limited. If you evaluate solely based on curve, your deck has bigger issues. By definition, this format means 90% of cards cannot be played on curve (barring some draw-your-deck combo turn 2 or 3). You have to evaluate your 3-4-5 CMC slots for mid-game and late-game playability as well. This niche card fits in the mid-game playable slot. 4/4 for 4 on curve is not bad, 8/8 for 4 mid-game is great.
- Apple pie to mincemeat pie (screw the oranges) comparisons do and prove nothing. Compare this to other "P/T based on lands" cards (similar template) and it is on par with the power creep since the days of Allosaurus Rider. Most templates count total land at 6 CMC; less than total land or only count power when under 6 CMC.
- What any given person finds to be a bad rare pull in a pack is entirely opinion based. OP voiced their opinion, and others did the same.
- OP asked for ideas in using Awakened Amalgam, some have done so, the rest is spiraling forum wars.

I think that about cover it so far. My uses for this would be the afore-mentioned lands matter deck or possibly in a mono-brown Golem Tribal. Though I could see potential for a UW/Esper control build that wants a cheap deterrent mid-game while leaving resources open for counters/tricks on opponent's turns.

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Seshiro the Anointed - Snake Tribal
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Doran, the Seige Tower - Wall Tribal
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 Post subject: Re: Is there any rare card more useless than Awakened Amalgam?
AgePosted: 2018-Feb-07 10:28 pm 
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Joined: 2013-Jul-25 1:15 pm
Age: Dragon
Location: Durham, England
I think we're all forgetting something.

Trait Doctoring

A blunt, specifically-shaped-scalpel-type answer, at sorcery speed, whose primary use in the set is to change the landwalk of the dimir bear of the set one time to make it unblockable. Then it affixes itself to the creature you need to doctor the traits of to make unblockable so you can... Doctor the traits of the unblocked creature.

The best use I've found is to enable spellcast triggers for cheap... But uh, literally any cipher spell does that.

I gave my brother a foil playset for his birthday.

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 Post subject: Re: Is there any rare card more useless than Awakened Amalgam?
AgePosted: 2018-Feb-07 11:30 pm 
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Joined: 2016-Nov-27 2:39 pm
Age: Dragon
Ski Gloves wrote:
I think we're all forgetting something.

Trait Doctoring

A blunt, specifically-shaped-scalpel-type answer, at sorcery speed, whose primary use in the set is to change the landwalk of the dimir bear of the set one time to make it unblockable. Then it affixes itself to the creature you need to doctor the traits of to make unblockable so you can... Doctor the traits of the unblocked creature.

The best use I've found is to enable spellcast triggers for cheap... But uh, literally any cipher spell does that.

I gave my brother a foil playset for his birthday.


Oh my god.

I never noticed that.

It's an effect that's needed well before combat damage but Cipher only fires off after combat damage.

[headdesk]

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 Post subject: Re: Is there any rare card more useless than Awakened Amalgam?
AgePosted: 2018-Feb-10 5:05 pm 

Joined: 2012-Oct-14 7:51 pm
Age: Wyvern
"Can anyone think of a good use for this POS? Or is this one of the junk rare turkeys that WOTC tosses into each set just because?"

That was the original pair of questions. They were answered - I guess? - over three pages of back and forth.

Sure, a case can be made that this card is meant for late-game value. Very late game, I'm guessing, and it probably fits a theme really well. I have been learning the hard way that unless you are hewing close to a theme, some cards do well and some don't do very well, and what you try to find in EDH is as much value for a card as you can get. That includes abilities you don't have to keep paying for.

Sure, I can strap any number of tinkertoys to my Amalgam. I love playing Voltron. But I also know that WOTC has a policy of printing 'duds' for the rare slot because... well, because they do. Some turn into winners later on, due to new rules, other card interactions and the like.

Awakened Amalgam might be one of them. It could be really good in a five color deck that ramps like there's no tomorrow. But the bottleneck is the one-land per turn and unless you want to bend your entire deck towards getting lands into play (and some decks do), this is a dead card in your hand for quite some time.

I dunno. Just feels like a third-string vanilla gorilla, and I really hate getting something like that in my rare slot.


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 Post subject: Re: Is there any rare card more useless than Awakened Amalgam?
AgePosted: 2018-Feb-11 12:28 am 
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Joined: 2013-Nov-04 2:12 am
Age: Dragon
Location: Northamptonshire, UK
Awakened Amalgam (which I pulled one of in my Rivals of Ixalan prerelease pack) feels like a classic Johnny/Jenny card. It's a seemingly-useless card that someone out there is going to try and make useful. Ironically, I feel that Commander is the format to make it work, likely in a colourless deck with all unique lands.

Yes, at the end of the day it's not the most impactful card, but that doesn't mean that someone out there isn't going to like it. Not all cards are printed for all formats and not all cards are printed for you.

If I had to put a terrible-Rare-for-Commander card forward, it'd be Harness the Storm (which, again, I pulled at my Shadows over Innistrad prerelease). Unlike Sphinx of the Chimes, which can at least work off of Relentless Rats and/or Shadowborn Apostle, I can't figure out any way to make this card worth playing in Commander: the Instant or Sorcery has to be cast from your hand and you have to target a target when the trigger goes on the stack (so you can't do shenanigans to make the spell you just cast be in your graveyard to be the target).

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 Post subject: Re: Is there any rare card more useless than Awakened Amalgam?
AgePosted: 2018-Feb-11 1:37 am 
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Joined: 2010-Dec-10 12:16 pm
Age: Elder Dragon
Centurion13 wrote:
"Can anyone think of a good use for this POS? Or is this one of the junk rare turkeys that WOTC tosses into each set just because?"

That was the original pair of questions. They were answered - I guess? - over three pages of back and forth.


Maybe these can help:
When Cards go Bad
Rare, but Well Done
The Good, the Bad and the Ugly Truth

MaRo wrote:
The question comes up again and again:

Why do there have to be bad rare cards?

Today, I will answer that question. And hopefully in a way that concretely explains why.

So, why do there have to be bad rare cards?

Short Answer

It's a necessity to meet other needs that R&D believes are more important to the game than the value proposition of any one booster pack.

Note that I'm not saying that getting a bad rare isn't an unpleasant experience. It clearly is. But it's necessary if R&D is to do other more important things for the game.

Long Answer

Since this is the long answer, <rest of article>


TLDR: Card quality and card rarity are not related; also, not every card will appeal to every player.

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Hazezon Tamar - Manland theme
Seshiro the Anointed - Snake Tribal
Jedit Ojanen of Efrava - Cat and Warrior Dual Tribal
Doran, the Seige Tower - Wall Tribal
Progenitus - Hydra themed Proliferate Deck
Karona, the False God - Backstabbing Hug


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 Post subject: Re: Is there any rare card more useless than Awakened Amalgam?
AgePosted: 2018-Feb-11 1:37 am 

Joined: 2008-Jan-25 8:26 am
Age: Elder Dragon
Location: Calgary
Masked Thespian wrote:
If I had to put a terrible-Rare-for-Commander card forward, it'd be Harness the Storm

Agreed, that's pretty terrible. Praetor's Grasp doesn't even do what you'd want.

Mastermind's Acquisition, tutor Burning Wish.

Cast Burning Wish for a second copy of Mastermind's Acquisition...

:oops:

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 Post subject: Re: Is there any rare card more useless than Awakened Amalgam?
AgePosted: 2018-Feb-11 8:45 am 
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Age: Elder Dragon
Masked Thespian wrote:
If I had to put a terrible-Rare-for-Commander card forward, it'd be Harness the Storm

It's good if your meta has a lot of Kira, Great Glass-Spinner or Erayo, Soratami Ascendant? Or people keep doing Jace, Unraveler of Secrets's ultimate?

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 Post subject: Re: Is there any rare card more useless than Awakened Amalgam?
AgePosted: 2018-Feb-11 3:19 pm 
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I love how in Maro's articles (from the early 2000's) one of the poster cards for the "bad rare" is Lion's Eye Diamond. If that isn't proof of his points having some massive merit, I don't know what is.

Edit: Also, if we want to talk about bad rares, let's look at some of the cards that somehow got printed as Mythics:

Ghastly Conscription
Overflowing Insight
Shorecrasher Elemental
Pearl Lake Ancient
The 2015 Core Set "Soul" Cycle
Cruel Reality
Archangel's Light
Linvala, the Preserver
Hellcarver Demon
Molten-Tail Masticore

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 Post subject: Re: Is there any rare card more useless than Awakened Amalgam?
AgePosted: 2018-Feb-12 7:17 am 

Joined: 2008-Jan-25 8:26 am
Age: Elder Dragon
Location: Calgary
Willbender wrote:
Quote:

It's good if your meta has a lot of Kira, Great Glass-Spinner or Erayo, Soratami Ascendant? Or people keep doing Jace, Unraveler of Secrets's ultimate?

That's a really interesting use for it. I'll happily pay 2BB for a Terror that kills Kira dead. The APNAP thing is a bit of a drag on it though.

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 Post subject: Re: Is there any rare card more useless than Awakened Amalgam?
AgePosted: 2018-Feb-12 7:29 am 
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Joined: 2016-Nov-27 2:39 pm
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tarnar wrote:
Willbender wrote:
Quote:

It's good if your meta has a lot of Kira, Great Glass-Spinner or Erayo, Soratami Ascendant? Or people keep doing Jace, Unraveler of Secrets's ultimate?

That's a really interesting use for it. I'll happily pay 2BB for a Terror that kills Kira dead. The APNAP thing is a bit of a drag on it though.


This wouldn't actually work. :(

At the time Harness the Storm gets triggered (at which point you have to pick a target), your original spell hasn't been countered yet and isn't in the graveyard to be chosen.

It works out like this:

1. Cast your spell, and put it on the stack.
2. Harness the Storm's triggered ability must now go on the stack. As part of this, we must pick a target for it. This has to be a card that's already in your graveyard right now with the same name as the spell you just cast. There won't be any such legal target given this is a singleton format. Since there is no legal target you can't actually put this ability on the stack.
3. Kira's/Erayo's triggered ability goes on the stack.
4. Kira's/Erayo's ability resolves and your spell is countered.
5. Your spell is put into the graveyard.

(If it's not your turn, swap steps 2 & 3 around due to APNAP, but it's functionally still the same because the card won't be in the graveyard until step 5.)

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Beloved precons: Atraxa, Praetors' Voice; Saskia the Unyielding; Freyalise, Llanowar's Fury.


Last edited by spacemonaut on 2018-Feb-12 12:17 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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