Gatecrash Preview: Call of the Nightwing

callofthenightwing (1)A one card combo? Neat!

A nice little token generator that potentially keeps on generating tokens!

Since the Cipher ability resolves after the spell itself resolves, you will have the 1/1 token with flying in play and can legally Cipher onto it. How cool is that? It’s a common play in limited for sure and most probably some will attempt it in Standard.

Dimir Keyrune and Invisible Stalker say Hi! as well.

invisible stalker


Gatecrash Preview: Boros Keyrune


Cute, but good enough?

Ah! another keyrune. While a little more costly than the original Ravnica Signets, they do give mana on their own and also animate into creatures when needed.

This one basically becomes a Boros Swiftblade. Sure it’s cool and all, but how often do you see this being good? if you do have an equipment to slap onto this, keep in mind it will cost you 2 to ‘creaturize’ this and 2 or more to equip. Not very efficient methinks.



Cipher? of course!

From the Gatecrash FAQ:

“702.97c The card with cipher remains encoded on the chosen creature as long as the card with cipher remains exiled and the creature remains on the battlefield. The card remains encoded on that object even if it changes controller or stops being a creature, as long as it remains on the battlefield.”

Nice! So we can Cipher things onto it. What would the advantage be? Well, over the other keyrunes, I’d say that this one woudl cause Ciphere to trigger twice. That’s double peanut butter and chocolate awesome!

peanut butter and chocolate + peanut butter and chocolate

Double Yummy!

The color combination might be off though, since it might be 4 color. But if we go with blue/white/red we have a few ciphers to work with:

handsofbinding lastthoughts stolenidentity

Which seems cooler to you? 

Obviously Stolen Identit  right?


Did you catch it?

That’s right! you’re not only cloning a creature, you’re cloning Mana! That’s some kind of weird ramp, no? I think it’s rather funny. An ‘Explosive Vegetation‘ each time you double strike. Of course you can just copy a better creature but this gets you infinite more style points.

The other 2 are fine as well. One is like a ‘double Frost Titan‘ and the other a better Thieving Magpie. Either way, it’s probably something to think about. Otherwise, you are just looking at hitting for two damage on an post-Supreme Verdict battlefield.

Gatecrash Preview: Nightveil Specter

nightveil specter

Hypnotic Specter? Not exactly!

So lets dare to compare:

1) This ‘mills’ , Hypnotic Specter discards.

Advantage: Hypnotic Specter

2) Nightveil is a hybrid card and thus has the potential to fit in more decks.

Advantage: Nightveil Specter

3) This new guy has an extra point of toughness making it extra relevant versus those who would try to simply Pillar  of Flame away the little guys.

Advantage: Nightveil Specter

4) You might not be able to cast the cards you ‘mill/exile’ unless they are lands. Hyppie doesn’t allow you to play what you make them discard anyhow.

Advantage: Nightveil Specter

Winner: Nightveil Specter ?

Now the reason this is not a clear cut winner is because Hypnotic Specter affects things more directly in its random discard than this ever will. It’s also better or at least was better in Legacy.

The comparison is a tad unfair as Hypnotic Specter is not even a Standard Legal card at the time being. For a comparable cost, it would have to battle it out with Vampire Nighthawk ( a card that is more relevant with what’s on the board)

.In its defense though, the Standard format as of late is increasingly multicolored (Dual lands will do that) so its ability to cast the exiled card might become more relevant.  It’s also a nice target with the Cipher mechanic (shocking eh?)  as you can double-up on its combat damage trigger.

Gatecrash Preview: Whispering Madness

whispering madness


Cipher? Well, it sure sounds cool. Kinda futuristic and cryptic.

So we have a Windfall effect that you can recur by dealing combat damage with one of your guys (probably with something like Invisible Stalker). Pretty neat, just put the card under your creature card kind of like an aura or equipment. Play some stuff out of your hand and reload before your opponent can really profit from his new hand. In theory it all works out great eh? Probably in limited too.

Will it have the power level required to see some serious constructed play? It’s hard to say, but I can see it in some kind of weird mill deck.