Best. Advent Calendar. Evar.
Posted on Dec. 2, 2015, 7:14 a.m. by clayperce
Inspired by an old Cardboard Crack cartoon, this year we're doing a crack-a-pack Advent calendar :-)
We've got packs from 25 different expansions, so we're looking forward to seeing a bunch of cards we've never seen before. They're all super-cheap though, so we're not expecting anything amazing. Still, you never know!
Anyone else in?
This is not competetive enough for me. I need a partner to do a booster battle calenar!
December 2, 2015 7:23 a.m.
Best advent calender is Modern Masters (any), since it's 24 boosters :P
December 2, 2015 7:29 a.m.
TheDevicer, thanks man!
EpicFreddi, battle calendar = I love it! We're totally going to have to upgrade to that next year!
RussischerZar, Yeah, I think the only thing better than MM would be MM battle calendar! Maybe someday! :-)
December 2, 2015 7:44 a.m.
We cracked a bizarrely thin Fallen Empires pack. Here's the rare ...
Troll moment of the evening: "We got the black Preator!" (face-palm)
December 2, 2015 7:52 a.m. Edited.
Fallen empires? I think I'd rather open 14 basics from most sets.
December 2, 2015 8:19 a.m.
so what i'm hearing is TheDevicer wants to crack a pack of homelands.
December 2, 2015 8:25 a.m.
TheDevicer, I think we would have as well!
Did I mention this was all about cheap packs? :-D
December 2, 2015 8:25 a.m. Edited.
WTF is with that giant-ass rabbit on that picture?
December 2, 2015 9:07 a.m.
RussischerZar, we wondered that as well, and spent way to much time on Google trying to figure it out. I was betting the whole thing was meant to invoke some sort of early 90's drug-induced holiday-hell, with the Easter bunny and Halloween candy corn in the background.
The most amazing thing about it all though: The artist actually sold the original. Whut?!?
December 2, 2015 11:42 a.m.
TheDevicer, you're going to get your wish. Today's is Homelands :-(
If things don't start looking up, I'm changing the title:
Worst. Advent Calendar. Evar.
December 2, 2015 11:48 a.m.
Cracked a Homelands pack this evening, and the highlight was this spectacular rare (I had to put it in a spoiler so y'all wouldn't hulk-smash your phone or computer or whatever with jealous rage):
We peaked ahead ... tomorrow is Coldsnap, and it's got to be better!
December 2, 2015 10:22 p.m.
Cracked a Coldsnap pack. Unfortunately, no Dark Depths :-(
Really, the highlight was a Snow-Covered Forest. But it looks like it would have been a really fun set to draft ... build-arrounds like Sound the Call and Aurochs Herd, Ripple effects like on Surging Sentinels and Surging Dementia, and Snow mana like on Skred and Frost Raptor -- all make it look like Coldsnap would have been a really fun set to draft.
So without further ado, here's our rare:
December 4, 2015 10:57 p.m.
Today was Weatherlight, and we were really hoping for Winding Canyons or maybe a Gemstone Mine. And while we certainly didn't do that well, we wouldn't have been embarrassed to play the Disrupt, Sage Owl, or Mind Stone we cracked.
Our rare however, was another story:
This is seriously our pick for Worst Card of the Calendar (so far, anyway). And this was the rare?!?
Well at least the flavor text is accurate...
December 4, 2015 11 p.m.
Yeah, we're really enjoying it. Even despite the occasional "Ewww!"
You sir, have an incredible knack for picking the Best. GIFs. Evar. Thanks so much!
December 4, 2015 11:30 p.m.
I try to live up to my title. I also have a huge list of favorites on Imgur to fall upon.
December 4, 2015 11:45 p.m.
Other fun stuff included ...
- Three Spellshapers. We'd seen the creature class before (on Jaya Ballard, Task Mage), but hadn't really dived in. They have a fun flavor -- mages who can turn anything into a particular spell. Our favorite was a Stronghold Biologist, who can turn anything (even a land) into essentially a Remove Soul
- Some interesting land interactions in Coiling Woodworm and Submerge
- A Caw Elf! OK, Skyshroud Sentinel is more expensive and doesn't have the evasion of a Squadron Hawk, but it was fun to see the mechanic 10 years before Caw Blade.
And now, for the rare:
December 5, 2015 2:53 p.m. Edited.
When the highlight is a foil Greel's Caress, you know it wasn't a great day for crack-a-pack :-(
The set obviously had a strong lands-matter theme, but it was NOTHING like Zendikar. More along the lines of sacrificing lands (Agent of Shauku and Troubled Healer) and being very careful about ending your turn tapped out or not (Calming Verse, Hazy Homunculus, and Well of Life). Considering the set was released back when mana burn was still a thing, that could have made for some interesting play. But there was really nothing in the pack that made us go "Cool!" ...
... which shouldn't have been any sort of surprise, as we could have looked up Mark Rosewater's opinion of the set before adding it to our Advent calendar: "Prophecy was, in my opinion, one of the all-time lows of design (my pick for the second-worst designed set after Homelands) but it did demonstrate some things not to do ..."
Ah well, live and learn! And as for the rare:
Tomorrow: Odyssey! And perhaps a history lesson in graveyard shenanigans ...
December 6, 2015 6:28 p.m.
I mean, those are ok. I like the one from the 5th. The ability anyways.
December 6, 2015 6:44 p.m.
December 6, 2015 6:46 p.m.
Did y'all hear something back on Post #25? Thought I heard something. Hmm. Oh well, never mind ;-)
I'm not sure what our fav' rare is so far. Probably the Herald of Leshrac from the 3rd.
But really, we're just still in shock that MaRo would have rather cracked Fallen Empires than Prophesy! :-P
December 6, 2015 6:58 p.m.
Good on ya CheeseBro! And yeah that would be seriously cool. God pack would probably be that plus a Price of Glory and Diabolic Tutor for the uncommons. But really, as long as it's not some Commander un-staple like Aven Shrine, we're good!
December 6, 2015 7:07 p.m. Edited.
Might as well post so I can see the rest of the fun :)
December 7, 2015 3:09 p.m.
Not sure yet, CheeseBro. We were rushing this morning didn't get to it, so now we've got to get everyone home from school and work and whatnot ...
"As ever," said Urza, "We wait" (from Mind Over Matter)
December 7, 2015 5:49 p.m.
Well the packs got out of order and we didn't notice, so we opened a Judgment pack instead (guess we have to wait another day to see if we get that foil Entomb!) ... oops!
But the good news is Pick 1 is, for the first time, our rare!
Pretty sweet. I mean, it's not a high dollar card or anything. But it's certainly playable.
As expected from the block that introduced graveyard shenanigans to the world, the pack also had bunch of fun graveyard-matters cards: Grip of Amnesia; Rats' Feast; Funeral Pyre; and Exoskeletal Armor.
- Mirror Wall -- A wall that can attack?
- Phantom Centaur -- I knew of the tough-to-kill */0 Phantoms but had never seem one
- Keep Watch -- Would have been great against the Squirrel swarms of the block
- Ember Shot and Sudden Strength -- Staples like Lightning Bolt and Giant Growth + draw a card was a neat concept ... too bad it was insanely overcosted
And we also have a new pick for best flavor text of the calendar (so far!): Cabal Trainee
Tomorrow: Odyssey. For real this time! :-)
December 7, 2015 7:21 p.m. Edited.
It looks like Odyssy would have been fun to draft, with Magic's first real graveyard-matters cards (e.g., Crashing Centaur, Werebear, Overeager Apprentice, and Crypt Creeper), some interesting Instants (e.g., Shelter, Afflict, Rites of Refusal, and Muscle Burst), and some curious manafixing (Bog Wreckage). Out first pick was pretty easy though:
(Well, unless we mess up the order again!)
December 8, 2015 7:44 p.m. Edited.
An easy first pick today:
The rest of the pack was nice too. As expected, black set was black, with cards like Shade's Form, Enslaved Dwarf, and Anurid Scavenger. We got two of the "disorder" enchantments (Pyromania and Narcissism). And we were super-pleased to get one of the Madness cards, Basking Rootwalla ( for a 1/1? Heck yeah!)
Best flavor text of the pack was probably the Pardic Lancer, though the calendar has had better.
December 9, 2015 9:43 a.m. Edited.
December 9, 2015 5:17 p.m.
yeah that was ur foil but what about the normal rare?
December 9, 2015 7:37 p.m.
CheeseBro in older packs, if there was a foil rare, it took the slot of the regular rare. there was no getting two rares in a pack back then.
December 9, 2015 7:46 p.m.
Oh, I see what you mean CheeseBro. There wasn't one. It wasn't until Time Spiral that Wizards started putting foils in a common slot.
December 9, 2015 7:47 p.m.
December 9, 2015 7:47 p.m.
interesting foil or rare. Was the foil always uc or r? or could it be a common?
December 10, 2015 12:57 a.m.
Back then, a foil card replaced the card normally found at that rarity. For example, the common foil from Dec 6th took a common slot, while the rare foil from yesterday took the rare slot.
Some other differences with the old foils:
- They weren't foiled all over, but only on the border. It's a really difficult printing process I guess, and the printing tech back then just wasn't up for doing a full card.
- The early ones all had the shooting star thing on them, like prerelease promos today.
- Before Urza's Legacy, packs didn't have foils at all :-(
- It was the foil Lightning Dragon from the Urza's Saga prerelease that got us all going :-)
December 10, 2015 6:09 a.m.
Today was a pack of Legions, which was notable as a creature-only set with a very strong tribal theme. In fact every single card we cracked was tribal: 4x Clerics; 2x Elves; 2x Goblins; 2x Slivers; 2x Soldiers; and 1x each of Beast, Wizard, and Zombie).
And while it might have been fun to draft 4x Onslaughts + 2x Legions, I feel deeply sorry for anyone who ever tried to draft 6x Legions ... most of the cards were flat-out terrible.
Our rare though, was pretty decent:
December 10, 2015 11:05 a.m. Edited.
Nice rare. Also, the creature-only set would make for a very interesting Standard, so that's always cool.