Ranking Every Battlecruiser Card (8 CMC+) with EDHREC – Part 12: The Answer is to Burn Everything!
Flyyyyyyyyyyyyyy! Fly High To the Skyyyyyyyyyyyyy!
Welcome back to this series where we rank every Battlecruiser card based on the number of decks on EDHREC. I write this in an airport with really terrible internet about three hours before I have to catch a flight.
That's not a joke. I wanted to come up with a joke, but honestly, I feel the need to comment on this oddity of my existence. My passion for ranking knows no bounds, even ones enforced by airport security and annoyed airport-goers silently seething at my hogging of the precious electrical outlet seats. I will sally forth to satisfy my search for knowledge and to entertain you all, whatever the cost!
Although we should probably hurry up before my flight takes off.
190: : 917 Decks
In a color of big sea monsters, you need to do a bit more than to stand out. In a random creature deck, there aren't going to be a ton of great things to untap with this thing most of the time. You can untap random lands, I guess? More likely, will tp down fairly large beaters instead, which, for eight mana, doesn't protect you very much. It’s no , let me tell you.
I am very surprised that I don't see commanders with tap abilities. Sure, it’s not amazing to play an eight-mana card just to gain a little value with your commander, especially when compared to a card like , but it gives you four triggers per round on any tap commander! show up on more of the EDHREC pages for
Let me say that again: . If you’re a blue commander that taps, and can conceivably activate multiple times, the potential for bonkers stuff to occur at least makes a consideration.
Over, Under, or Just Right? Underplayed: Wait, why have I never tried CardKingdom*. in my deck? Excuse me a moment. *Does a
189: : 957 Decks
I normally don’t talk about cards that are released within a couple months of my first article, since those cards haven’t had time to be put into decks yet. Someone could argue that should also technically apply , too, since it got unbanned about two months before this series started, and therefore, I shouldn't be talking about it here.
Those people would be correct, but I don't care. I love this card. I'm gonna gush about it!
I’ve loved Worldfire since before it was unbanned. It checks two really important boxes for me. For one thing, it's splashy. You spend nine mana and you completely turn the game on its head. Destroy everything, everybody, and burn everyone to 1 life! Holistically, if you look at what cards actually do in a vacuum, I think might be the card that does the most stuff.
However, there’s another reason I love , while not being a huge fan of cards like or , and that’s because fundamentally flips the game on its head. Cards that only set everyone back are either delaying tactics or glorified win cons. either sets the game back to how it was on turn one, or it's basically a two-card combo with . Neither result is gonna be a game I'll remember for years to come.
two-card combos with Worldfire, too, but that’s not the spirit of the card I like. I'm a fan of the “fair” , where you cast it and let the chips fall where they may. That's definitely not everyone's cup of tea. absolutely invalidates everything anyone has done in the game before that point, so I completely understand why some people hate this card, but that game-flipping nature is why I love it. There are few to no decks that are prepared for a that resolves. It makes even the most consistent combo deck improvise like nothing else. is different. Most of the time, when you cast , the game is much more than just reset, it's a different game entirely. Suddenly, is an incredibly powerful Magic card. Suddenly, value engines look way derpier. Yeah, there’re
Over, Under, or Just Right? Underplayed: Yeah, you can probably tell I'm incredibly happy this card got unbanned. Less happy about the price spike, but eh, it’ll come down eventually.
188: : 961 Decks
I bet you thought that with the Avatars and Winds gone for a while, we'd be done with old expensive weird cards, but no! May I present a whole new weird old cycle: the Decrees! You might have been able to piece together this cycle from seeing and , but they're all basically big spells with a Cycling ability. The only one we won’t see is , which ironically saw the most play in Standard formats, and is the second most played of this cycle in EDH, but happens to be the only one that doesn’t fit the battlecruiser mold. The other four are big, splashy, and goofy - so they're the perfect mascots for this entire list!
is the least impressive of the five, and I still love it. It’s not , and the Cycling cost is fairly high, but it’s probably gonna win you the game every time you cast it. Any , , or , and this will probably be super duper mega lethal. You need a good reason to play it over , but the permanent nature of this effect does a lot of work.
Over, Under, or Just Right? Underplayed: We can thank the precon reprint for the upticks in play this card is seeing. It’s not bad in the precon, but there’s a reason it’s the most removed card on the updates page. That said, I think it could be real fun in the right deck, and I wanna highlight that, even if the card itself is probably closer to a 'Just Right' than an 'Underplayed'.
187: : 964 Decks
If you’re only activating once a turn, then I don’t think it’s worth the eight mana.
If you’re activating it multiple times a turn with something like , I can get behind that.
If you’re going full nonsense with + , that’s the best level of goofiness, and is therefore worth doing.
Over, Under, or Just Right? Overplayed: You see, there’s a hierarchy of needs for this card.
186: : 967 Decks
Someday I’ll get to talk about the big scaly bois. Not today though, because I won’t spend this talk on a vanilla 9/9. It’s cute in , but you do not need an in . You have much better options.
Over, Under, or Just Right? Overplayed: To steal a line from my shadow nemesis from the other side of the week, "don’t let your memes be dreams".
185: : 1,000 Decks
Eh. It’s a Giant, I guess, but beyond that, is a subpar creature and a subpar Wrath. Even cheating it into play with is often going to be worse than . Play it in , but skip it elsewhere.
Over, Under, or Just Right? Overplayed: I didn't mean for the middle of this article to be so snappy. You almost never get such quick, coherent thoughts out of me. You should savor this.
184: : 1,010 Decks
I am upset. is $4 for no discernible reason other than “Wizards forgot about it.” It is not even close to the best Dragon you can play. It’s certainly big and bulky, but if you really tune your Dragon deck, there're so many Dragons that hit harder or gain more value than this. Thus, there's been very little demand for a reprint. Other than a From the Vault and a The List printing (both of which don't really count), this card has remained a forgotten oddity.
But gosh dang it, I need a copy for There’re other cards that can give Scion haste, but giving Scion the other abilities on Overlord make it one of the better options for this specific commander. Why the heck are you not capitalizing on my very specific niche, Wizards?, and I refuse to pay $4 for it! I just wanna give Scion haste and on the fly while also have a decent beater later.
Over, Under, or Just Right? Just Right: I’ll give some points for being big and scary. It's a fine card, but more-tuned Dragons decks do not need it at all.
183: : 1,049 Decks
Why? Whyyyyy? Y? Why is in 700 decks? Who is this for? The burn decks don’t want this because it’s basically a double removal spell for way too much mana. The big spellslinger decks, like , are gonna have a real tough time getting the cost down, so it's still gonna be a double removal spell for way too much mana. The Cascade and big mana decks are probably the best place for this card, but at the end of the day, it's still going to be nothing more than a double removal spell for way too much mana.
Over, Under, or Just Right? Overplayed: I’d frankly take over this.
182: : 1,058 Decks
On one hand, is a bit of a relic from a bygone era. The modern Commander player base is pretty aware that there’s never a guarantee you’ll be able to win through combat. You need ways to not lose if someone plays a or a , so you see decks that win without dealing damage at all, or by dealing it all at once with and such. This means has the potential to do nothing at all, a lot of the time.
Paradoxically, though, this weird age might mean that there’s never been a better time to play . Sure, the general idea that decks need noncombat damage outlets has weakened combat, but ironically, I think it’s actually made decks less prepared to randomly take incremental damage over the course of a game. Sure, you still have stuff like in over 50,000 decks, but factors of the format have made it much faster, but also less resilient. You’ve got the increase in noncombat ways to win the game, which means decks are less incentivized to load up entirely on pillow fort pieces. You've got the increase in more durdly value decks that spend the early game getting value pieces they don’t want to risk in combat. You've also got an increase in mass removal over single-target removal, making it easier for random dorks to stick around. No one wants to against a single . This general microcosm means that you will often see life totals dip into the 30s and 20s way earlier than you would in the durdly nonsense days of yore.
All this is to say that there's a decent chance actually does something. It’s always gonna see play in the decks that are built around paying all their life for fun and profit, but Reverse might have a home in less all-in decks, like , that pay a lot of life over the course of a game. Even Pillowfort decks could consider running this as a legit win condition thanks to the incremental damage being thrown around by everyone else. I wouldn’t call it a busted win con, but I think it can do work in some mid-power tables, which is a very weird sentence.
Over, Under, or Just Right? Underplayed: I honestly am not sure how to feel about this.
181: : 1,082 Decks
I don’t think any random eight-mana spell has been as improved by new cards more than a pile of Minotaurs before those two, but it was probably something like , , , and , which are good, but not like good. was improved by the printings of and . You could assemble
Now, though, you get , , , and , and with a land, the Neheb trigger, and the Sethron pump, I quickly lose count of how much damage you'll do. Commenters, figure out how much nonsense this is for me!
Over, Under, or Just Right? Just Right: When I was playing Minotaurs, my best line for winning was and . Be grateful for what you have!
Back In My Day, Planeswalkers Weren't Legendary!
I hear my flight boarding, so I'll make this fast! Let me know what you think about this batch of cards in the comments. Is there an even sweeter pile with ? Do you have a rad brew? Let me know in the comments. Until next week!