Thursday, February 2, 2017

Vingolf 3 - Valhalla Spoilers

Here we go kids, the last spoiler for Vingolf, and what a ride it has been. According to Jordan we'll be getting the entire set spoiled before it drops next weekend, so I'm anxiously waiting to see what reprints we'll be getting, as well as what other Rulers will be gracing us with their resonator forms. Fingers crossed for Alisaris! This is another posted-immediately-after-the-spoiler articles, but I'll be gone all weekend at Carolina Games Summit, so I'm knocking this out now.

And we're starting off strong. Siegfried (on top of being one of my favorite myths) is an absolute monster of a card. 7/7 for three will is standard, but he'll become a 13/13 with flying if you have a Dragon. That alone is insane, but he also recovers all of your dragons when he enters! That's just insane! Dragons are a pretty beefy race of cards, generally packing high costs and higher attack power. On top of the well-known Gwiber and Draig, we also have Bahamut from this Vingolf and Flame Dragon of Altea. It's also important to note that his effect isn't restricted to just resonators: Dragon Rulers are going to get a second wind too! He'll restand Sylvia, who can potentially recover three more stones (and let you play another Siegfried!), and every J-Ruler in Vingolf works with him. I mean, even if you only have one dragon in play he's going to be a power play. One Gwiber? That's still 2400 damage getting thrown at the opponent. Utter madness.

Sol is a meager 4/4 for two will, far below the standard, but he's functionally a new Gretel. Instead of calling wind stones, however, he calls basic light stones. As noted in the article, Millium is the biggest candidate for this. However, a Wendy rush deck using the new Light Dragon Ruler from Vingolf will benefit from this guy a ton. He gives the potential for a 4/4 pump from triggering resonance twice, and if you've got new Grimm on the field, this guy is a Fairy Tale and will recover Wendy. The combos are just waiting to happen.

And now we start to move into Meh City. Knight Lord of Godspeed has the honor of being the first non-fire resonator with printed Swiftness we've seen, but that's really all he has going for him. He's a 10/10 vanilla that can swing off the turn he's played, and he'll give your field Precision, but that's not much. You can play a Celestial Wing Seraph for the same cost, but get a second strong resonator plus its effect. He looks cool, but he just doesn't cut it in my opinion.

Barust is going to spawn some pretty irritating locals decks. He gets 2/2 for each magic stone in any graveyard, which isn't all that good at first glance, but he synergizes with himself. Rest him and banish one of your magic stones, and you can deal 500 damage to one resonator. Yeah, it's awful. Rest him and banish two of your magic stones, though, and you can destroy one special magic stone. Losing two of your own stones to kill one of your opponent's sounds really bad, but I bet you can use a bunch of ramp cards to keep yourself afloat. Sol, Blessings of Yggdrasil, and Magic Stone Analysis all come to mind. Turn 1 you play this guy. Turn 2 you play one of those cards to get a third stone, use this guy to kill 2 of your stones (down to 1) to kill your opponents one stone. Next turn you tap for stone, going back up to 2, and play another of the aforementioned cards. Sack 2 stones to kill your opponent's only stone, rinse and repeat. As long as you have one of those ramp cards in your hand, you're golden. Run a 20-card stone deck and stall your opponent out as long as possible, and once they run out of their 10 stones, you just take your sweet time killing them. They can't play with no stones, and he'll be impossibly big. At the end of this series of unfortunate events, all 20 of your stones will be gone and all 10 of your opponent's will too, so this guy is leeching off of 30 stones in the graves. That's 6000 attack. RIP your opponent.

Here we have the wondrous return of Explode, but not in keyword form. Anytime something of yours attacks, if it gets blocked, you nuke the attacker and blocker. Sadly, its mandatory, but it's non-target removal. You won't want to use any big resonators in this deck, since the opponent can just block with weenies and make it a 1-for-1 trade. I feel like this guy will be good in a token deck that can churn them out (cough Elves cough), maybe with a Library of Alexandria to get the maximum Aggro out of them. He can even kill J-Rulers, too. Swiftness might not be the best keyword on him, though, since you'll probably want to refrain from attacking with him. Don't want to kamikaze into some worthless chump blocker.

If Alisaris doesn't get a resonator, I'm blaming this card. He burns your opponent and one of their resonators for 600 on-enter, and does nothing else. Just sits there are a weak 600/600... for 4 will. Honestly this guy is pretty useless, so if Alisaris got the boot for him, I'm writing some very angry letters.

Here we have one of the poster children for this Vingolf. Chronos' art was one of the first released, and seeing how OP his Ruler was, I know a lot of people were excited to see where they went with him. Honestly his effect is amazing, it gives you 2 draws per turn which really adds up. However, on a 4-drop resonator, it may come in a bit late to be of any real use. Ramp decks will make great use of him, but he's really vulnerable to removal and doesn't do anything to actively help you win. He's an investment card: You don't get anything out of him until the following turn, and from there he just turns into raw advantage. If you can take the tempo hit of playing him when you should be playing something like Captain Hook or a similar swing-card, then he'll pay off big time. With all the easy resonator removal in the game, I doubt he'll ever be worth it. Maybe in a Mercerius/Sol deck, where you can drop him with Rising and force them to deal with other threats before him. Heck, drop 2-3 of him and just go to town on advantage.

Speaking of Rising decks, here's Rising from the Depths: The Resonator. Tomoe has two identical awakenings, so you can choose to play her as a 3-cost to bounce one resonator, or as a 4-cost to bounce two. She's essentially a blue version of Nyarlathotep, but offers way less utility. Once she hits the field she's just a vanilla, and since we're in a meta of on-enter effects, she's really not all that great.

Trash-tier vanilla card. Moving on.

I really want to like this card. She's a 5-drop, so on the expensive end of resonators, but will let you add a Chant, Resonator, and Addition from your graveyard to your hand on-enter. This is a great reset, but for 5 mana, you'd want something with more of a tempo swing that this, especially since she's only 8/8. If mass-discard makes a resurgence then I bet she'll see play, but I don't see any current deck investing that much into her. Lumia can make great use of her by spamming her for the +3 every turn, but they'd just rather abuse Hook and win sooner.

Home boy Oberon switched from fairies to elves. I guess he wanted to be taller. 7/7 for a 4-drop isn't good stats, but he gives you three Elf token when he enters, so he more than makes up for himself in value. Feithsing loves this guy, and he adds a ton of speed to Elf tribal decks. There isn't much else to say: He does tight, clean work.

Here we have Green Wendy. Silph doesn't have flying, unfortunately, but recovering when you call a stone is pretty good aggro value, especially on a 6/6 two drop. Combine this with things like Sol or Magical Stone Analysis and you've got a pretty good rush turn. The lack of flying makes it a lot easier to block, though. He (she?) takes less deck-investment than Wendy, though, so there are definitely some perks here.

Oh this guy looks super fun. His stats are low for his cost, but that's not what's important. For one black, resting him, and sacking a resonator you can revive any resonator from your graveyard. You can only do this during your turn, but the possibilities are still endless. Easy access to Azathoth, Hook spam, you name it. Unfortunately I'm pretty sure you can't revive what you sacked, but that's probably for the best. It sucks you can't use him in response to targeted removal, but I suppose that would be broken. Still, big resonator spam is viable now, and I can't wait to test it out.

I'm torn on this guy. I've been told "He's amazing! Instant inclusion in control decks post-rotation," but I'm not sold. 6/4 aren't the worst stats for a 2-drop, since Bow and Space-Time will be rotating (unless Space-Time gets the reprint in here, which I'm kind of expecting), but you can't really ever attack with him. He's basically a pseudo-blocker for 600 that will gain you life, and is recurring. Kind of. Paying 3 to add him to your hand from your graveyard when you call a stone is... not that good I would think. It isn't instant-speed, so you can't use your unused will before upkeep. You'd be starting the turn down 3 will for anything else. 5 down if you play him. Seems like a huge will sink for very little real payoff.

Another card similar to Shade. Loki gets a bigger booty the more cards you have in your graveyard, and at 10, he gets flying and lifelink. Not awful for a 2-drop, but starting out with 100 defense leaves him very vulnerable to burn and damage. 500 and Lifelink isn't very impressive, either. You aren't doing any real damage, and black has plenty of other options for scary boss monsters. Heck, Rinka can fly and she can potentially hit for way more. In a post-rotation format, where we've lost things like Lucifer, then maybe. But we'd have lost a lot of other control tools too, so it's really up in the air. Personally, I think there will be plenty of better options.

I was hyped to see Odin, but a little disappointed he wasn't Light/Darkness with a self-recovery effect like his old J-Ruler form was. He's still a monstrosity, though. 6 will is a lot, but once he's in play, he doubles your available will. All of your stones produce 1 more will when you tap them. How insane is that? There's the argument that once you're at 6 stones you shouldn't really need more ramp, but there are ways to get this guy out earlier. If you're playing Fox, you can Alice's Castling a Griphon away to drop him early. Sariel can cheese him in from your graveyard on Turn 5. From there, feel free to cast stupidly-expensive cards like they're nothing. Valentina's Reach to draw your whole deck or make your opponent discard their 7-card hand. Steam explosion for a 1-shot. Use Charm of the Princess to steal a 10-cost resonator just to style on your opponent. I mean, imagine this guy in Vlad Tepes.

That's it for this week's spoilers. We'll be getting Vingolf's actual release next week, and I'm super pumped to see what else is in store. I'll definitely be throwing up an article covering anything noteworthy that gets revealed then, and I think we may be getting L3 spoilers starting Tuesday? We'll see. Until then!

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