Wednesday, January 18, 2012

New Card - Geralf's Messenger

I've been starting to think the zombie population in Dark Ascension previews was a little low. Fortunately, today's preview features another citizen from my favorite tribe:


First Impression

Every undying creature is playable and Geralf's Messenger is no different. It drains for 4, it comes back to life as a 4/3 creature, and another zombie to add to your zombie horde. What's not to like?

Creatures with undying are good. Play them.

But I also want to take the time to say that I'm becoming of this new negative "mechanic" found on recent zombies that Wizards has quietly slipped into the game. Many zombies now enter the battlefield tapped. It makes sense flavor-wise and for a negative mechanic, it's not crippling. And of course, whenever a negative is included onto a card, the more powerful the rest of the card can be. If not for the "enters the battlefield tapped" clause, who knows what the messenger would look like? Maybe it would be a 2/2 or maybe all players would lose 2 life whenever it entered the battlefield. In the grand scheme of negative mechanics, "enters the battlefield tapped" is a small price to pay for such power.


Deck Ideas

If you've been following along with my previews of Dark Ascension, you probably know what I'm going to say next. I'm going to go back to a familiar deck idea that I must have mentioned at least a dozen times--black/green undying aggro.

Of all the undying creatures that have been previewed so far, it seems to me that both black and green have received the most aggresively costed creatures. These creatures include Strangleroot Geist, Vorapede, and now this. You might even want to include Mikaeus, the Unhallowed just because it's so powerful and splashy (regardless of it's high converted mana cost).

Silent Departure is still going to be a problem, but undying just seems to powerful to me. Against almost any other form of spot removal, undying just screams of value. With undying, the beats come and they keep on coming.

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