Tuesday, September 6, 2016

Top 10 Cards in CFC

The past month or so has certainly been fun, full of spoilers, sneak peak events, excitement, disappointment, the whole nine yards. As the final week before the official release of Curse of the Frozen Casket draws to a close, I'm listing out what I believe will be the Top 10 cards in the set, in no particular order.

Charlotte, Determined Girl Charlotte, the Mage of Sacred Spirit

The first card from the set that got revealed, Charlotte set the bar high for Rulers for the rest of the spoiler season. She has some good synergy with Charlotte's Protector (duh), and serves as a strong form of early control, especially against aggro. When she flips she refills your hand, either after using it all on her effect or having it whittled down by the constant discard cards of popular black decks. She also packs a life gain effect and pseudo-protection effect, and her rest effect transforms into a bounce one, perpetuating the oppression of high-cost resonators that this game seems to love.

Charlotte's Water Transformation Magic

Charlotte's Water Transformation Magic is just bonkers. For only 1, you get to completely nuke a threatening resonator. Arthur? Lancelot? Pricia? Nah son, have a bear. An instant speed chant that makes a resonator 400/400 would be great on its own, but this thing took it further by wiping effects, being cheap as dirt, AND letting you do it twice. GG big resonators.

Zero, Six Sage of Light Zero, Master of the Magic Saber

On the other end of the spectrum, we have Miss Hyper-Aggro 2016, and there's no Steve Harvey to take this title away from her. Being able to wipe keywords from a card is incredible, but flipping and continually removing them from everything? Feminists everywhere cheer as she knocks the patriarchy down a notch. Add to that her massive 1100/1100 stats and immunity to battle shenanigans and you've got one nifty gal.

Zero's Familiar

This little dude may not look like much, especially outside of Zero decks, but he's definitely going to see some play. With Black Moonbeam still lurking to kill any J-Ruler-centric decks, this guy offers a way to protect your boss monster from instant destruction. Previously, any deck looking to use that strategy had to use Wind-Secluded Refuge, but this guy makes this list if only because he offers another viable option other than that addition.

Creature from Chaos

Boy oh boy, this thing. Anything he blocks? Dead. Even J-Rulers, which is just ridiculous. What's more is he doesn't even target, so say GG to Wind-Secluded Refuge and Zero's Familiar. Slap a Blood-Covered War Axe on him and get an easy field nuke every turn. Your opponent is going to have to use a removal spell/ability on this guy, but he only cost you 1 mana, so you aren't terribly invested in him anyway.

Captain Hook, the Pirate

Probably the card with the most hype right now. Hook completely decimates an opponent using Special Magic Stones, and can easily be cheesed into play with Shion's ability. Or just hard cast him for maximum trolliness. Dare your opponent to use Charlotte to bounce him back. This guy simply existing is probably going to cut down on Dual Stone spam, and I am 100% OK with that. Sitting down to an opponent with 10-Dual-Stones.dek back when Grimm was still in rotation was just a bad time waiting to happen, and I'm glad FoW Inc is adding incentives to play the regular mono-color stones. What's more, if the opponent isn't using Special Stones, he can still bounce 2 resonators to make way for a huge push for game. Whoever designed this guy did good in my book, perfect 5/7.

Red Riding Hood

There's not going to be a stage of the game where this card is bad. Dropping her early means your opponent is going to be hesitant to attack, since blocking with her lets you get a magic stone, and letting the opponent go from 2 to 4, or 3 to 5, can be a death sentence. Drop her mid-game and have fun with a 700/700 for 2 (Can you say value?) that, again, the opponent will be hesitant to block or attack. Drop her when you have 7 stones (pretty easy to hit with just a little bit of ramp) and you have a card that puts Pursuant Pricia to shame. 

Cheshire Cat, Guide to the Mysterious World

I was vehemently against this card being even remotely good until I pulled one in the sneak event. If you're playing big resonators that you draw early, rather than letting them sit there and be dead for quite a few turns, Cheshire turns them into a little more power for herself. Your opponent Scorns you when you only have 1 or 2 resonators in hand? (Or Nameless Mists when you only have a couple spells) Chase with this effect to make sure you get to keep what you want. Remove a card from hand and then flip Charlotte, and add that card back at the next opportunity to get an extra +1 off of Charlotte's flip. Remove a Lancelot or Pricia and get some early aggro going. This card just has so many uses that let you snake around common plays. 

Rinka, Second Daughter of the Mikage

While Vampires definitely benefit from being played tribal, they're also potent stand alone cards. Rinka being a 600/600 2-drop, the threshold of power for that cost level, and the ability to get even stronger by dealing damage makes her incredibly versatile. Slap on a Blood-Covered War Axe and watch her get swole.

Urashima Taro The Black Treasure Box

I'm not including Otohime here since she's honestly not all that good. She's gimmicky with the Black Box, but really can' be a stand-alone card, and taking this from a 2-card combo to a 3-card one drastically decreases the consistency of it. Urashima Taro has insane value, with an on-enter effect AND an on-death one. Killing a damaged resonator makes him a Demonflame with a body, and gives him amazing addition to Mikage or even Lunya decks. 500/700 aren't bad stats either, and when he dies, he searches what is essentially a Stoning to Death. Play Black Box and attach it to something, then let the opponent squirm trying to save it. 

Invitation of DisasterLumia, Saint of World AwakeningFairy Tale Library, Alexandria

Here we have the honorable mentions. Invitation of Disaster being able to hit someone for half their life is kind of ridiculous, especially with Mars essentially making it free with his Mana ability. But basically using up all of his resources (the only reason to run him) to use this card makes it (and him) feel gimmicky, especially if the opponent cancels this. Its mediocre, and honestly kind of lazy, card design kept it out of my Top 10. Lumia suffers from being a little too niche in my opinion. Her absurd shift cost takes a fairly dedicated build, but even for a hard life reset, that's only going to stall your loss unless you already have a tempo swing. She's a little too hard to side in to decks to counter rush/aggro. Library of Alexandria is a really neat idea, but is also a bit gimmicky and likely won't see much competitive play. Being able to give tribal decks blanket swiftness is cool, but ultimately isn't necessary, and losing turn 2 tempo to play it may cost you dearly.

I may re-visit this idea in a couple weeks, after the set sees its official release and we've had some time to view its impact on the meta. I think it will be interesting to see what cards have more bark than bite, and if there are any sleeper meta-definers (cough cough Riza/Melder cough cough).