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5 Color and Planeshift
By Kurtis Hahn
5 Color and Planeshift; a match made in heaven (R&D)?


Well, I attended the Chicago-area prerelease this Saturday, and was unable to hop in the first flight due to a 27-over speeding ticket incurred by driver and longtime friend, Mike DeLany. (Sorry, Mike)
However, I did manage to get into a couple of the 32-man flights, specifically numbers 2 and 6.

Iíll tell you right at the start, that since I am not under 16 years of age, I did not open a Terminate in either one of these flights, let alone multiples that I saw some kiddies play. I made due with multiple Magma Bursts (3R, Kicker sac two lands. Deal three to any target, and if kicker paid, three damage to another target.) in both flights.
First of all, this card is completely unfair, and is better than Terminate in sealed, probably in draft, too.
Anyway, I drew for first in flight 2, and in the finals played against a guy I have played before. Though the last name escapes me, his first name was Myron, and we had a blast.

I am playing a R/W/b build with lots of amazing rares. I wanted to open at least one good rare out of my starter, and not have a rehash of the Nemesis prerelease (I opened Worry Beads, Clear the Land, and Security Detail) and wanted to be able to build a decent deck; none of this ďLucky ManĒ crap that I have been playing in Invasion sealed recently.


So I openÖRout. Sounds good to me. Strossus, nice try pal, get in my sideboard. My Planeshift has a couple of nice surprises waiting for me as well. I open Tahngarth, Talruum Hero and smash opponents who think that it is funny to Terminate my two-power two-drop.
Tahngarth is nuts. 3RR, 4/4, Does not tap to attack, 1Rtap, He deals power in damage to target creature, and that creature deals its power in damage back to him, aka Arena or Karplusan Yeti.
This guy not tapping to attack is absolutely insane.
I also open Planeswalkerís Scorn. 2B, Enchantment. 3B, choose random card from opponentís hand and target creature gets ĖX,-X until end of turn where X is equal to the converted mana cost of the card revealed.

So, here is how this card went. Turn 3, drop the Scorn. Turn 4, kill your creature. Turn 5, kill your creature. Turn 6, kill your creature. Turn 7, drop a creature, beat away until they kill it. Hold off for a bit, get Tahngarth, smash opponentís face. (Using Samite Pilgrim with Tahngarth is nuts, too, BTW.)

Anyway, I lose in the finals of flight 2 after a premeditated split and get 21 packs. I go 3-1-1 in flight 6, and get a few packs, some of which I give to Mike for paying my entry fee, and I give him all the cards I opened. Mike got his own deck back in flight 6, and had a terrible deck that went 4-1, including getting back at me for beating him in flight 2. He did get a foil Skyship Weatherlight, so at least he made his money back.

Now to the article, finally.

For those familiar with the 5 Color format, read on. If not, youíd better make a quick side trip to www.5-color.com to look over the format, so you understand about what Iím talking about.

With many more multi-colored cards in this set, it appears that it should be tailor-made for a format like 5 Color. However, with Invasion, we have seen that multi-colored cards donít get played by finicky 5 Color players, looking for the best card for the casting cost.

Invasion, however, gives us lots of solid options, not the least of which is Terminate, the best removal since Swords to Plowshares. I suspect that this set will give the 5 Color format more cards to play for the most deck types, and should be the best set for 5 Color since any set in the Urzaís Block.

There are certain groups of cards that automatically lend themselves to great 5C play. The Battlemages are excellent, especially if you can kick them to kill permanents. The new Charms are okay too, but at three separate mana, they arenít great in the early game, but most of their effects are good in the late game, anyway.

Card Title: Aura Blast
Card Color: White
Casting Cost: 1W
Type & Class: Instant
Card Text: Destroy target enchantment. Draw a card.

Seems solid, but 5 Color players want versatility. I donít think that this provides enough, though the cantrip effect is great. Weíll see about this, though I suspect it wonít see much play.

Card Title: Rushing River
Card Color: Blue
Casting Cost: 2U
Type & Class: Instant
Card Text: Kicker-Sacrifice a land.
Return target nonland permanent to its owner's hand. If you paid the kicker cost, return another target nonland permanent to its owner's hand.

This seems like a great card for most control or combo oriented decks. Being able to hold off the opposing creatures and build a defense is indeed important, and Rushing River being at instant-speed, makes it leaps and bounds better than Undo. The fact that this targets not just creatures, but all nonland permanents, means that the caster gets a second chance to counter creature, artifact, and enchantment threats that are already on the table.

Card Title: Waterspout Elemental
Card Color: Blue
Casting Cost: 3UU
Type & Class: Creature - Elemental
Pow/Tough: 3/4 Card Text: Kicker
Flying. When Waterspout Elemental comes into play, if you paid the kicker cost, return all other creatures to their owners' hands and you skip your next turn.

Well, I saw several of these cast throughout the day, but unfortunately none of the controllers paid kicker. Itís too bad, as most of the time it would have been just nuts in the creature standoffs that they were involved in. Iím not sure if this card will see much 5 Color play, though it certainly could.
Oath of Druids based decks could use this. If they Oath it up, itís a great blocker, bouncing with Serendib Efreet, or if cast, can give a huge advantage over the beatdown player. Beatdown could even play this against other beatdown. I suspect that with 10 mana, this kicked and an Armageddon, might be above average.

Card Title: Diabolic Intent
Card Color: Black
Casting Cost: 1B
Type & Class: Sorcery
Card Text: As an additional cost to play Diabolic Intent, sacrifice a creature. Search your library for a card and put that card into your hand. Then shuffle your library.

Clearly any card that allows you to ďtutorĒ will be restricted in the 5 Color format. However, this is a tutor that combo players just donít get to use effectively. Perhaps they will be able to sacrifice a Mishraís Factory, though most of this card will be seen in beatdown or control. Be wary when the opponent has counter mana open however, as the sacrifice effect is not a cheap one.

Card Title: Phyrexian Scuta
Card Color: Black
Casting Cost: 3B
Type & Class: Creature - Zombie
Pow/Tough: 3/3 Card Text: Kicker-Pay 3 life
If you paid the kicker cost, Phyrexian Scuta comes into play with two +1/+1 counters on it.

So, what can I say about this card that hasnít already been said? Well, I thought that it was a 2/2 that got three +1/+1 counters, but apparently I was wrong, and it is better than I first imagined.
This card is better than Derelor. It IS better than Juzam Djinn. The lone black in the casting cost makes it perfect for the format, and even decks that arenít playing a ton of black can play this amazing creature.

Card Title: Flametongue Kavu
Card Color: Red
Casting Cost: 3R
Type & Class: Creature - Kavu
Pow/Tough: 4/2
Card Text: When Flametongue Kavu comes into play, it deals 4 damage to target creature.

Luckily I was able to Recoil my Samite Archers in flight 6, so my opponent had to kill this guy when he cast it. However, this card will see lots of play in 5 Color, and its light on the red, though it doesnít deal damage to players. Skizzik was thought to make a splash on the 5C scene, but its R kicker makes it a tougher card to keep in play. This, while not as hasted, is very good creature kill, and can kill a Derelor, or shoot a Seredib out of the sky.

Card Title: Gaea's Might
Card Color: Green
Casting Cost: G
Type & Class: Instant
Card Text: Target creature gets +1/+1 until end of turn for each basic land type among lands you control.

Looking for combat tricks in your heavy-creature 5 Color deck? Look no further than Gaeaís Might. This creature-enhancer will replace Giant Growth, and while not as versatile as Wax/Wane, has the potential to finish off an unsuspecting opponent. With the February 1st unrestriction of Berserk, look for this to make its way into beatdown-oriented decks.

Card Title: Quirion Dryad
Card Color: Green
Casting Cost: 1G
Type & Class: Creature - Dryad
Pow/Tough: 1/1
Card Text: Whenever you play a white, blue, black, or red spell, put a +1/+1 counter on Quirion Dryad.

Quirion Dryad gets big in a hurry. While it will stay manageable for a few turns, outside of that you will need black removal to dispose of it. It gets the counter whether or not the spell resolves, so this is a great early drop against control or combo, with the potential to put a real hurt on the opponent.

Card Title: Quirion Explorer
Card Color: Green
Casting Cost: 1G
Type & Class: Creature - Elf
Pow/Tough: 1/1
Card Text: T: Add to your mana pool one mana of any color that a land an opponent controls could produce.

The living Fellwar Stone may make a nice addition to 5 Color decks. While it only seems like a ďbad Utopia Tree,Ē being common helps those players out who donít have tons of money to drop on the format.
It is an Elf, and in heavy green decks, is just another way to accelerate into Blastoderm, which canít be underrated.

Card Title: Thornscape Familiar
Card Color: Green
Casting Cost: 1G
Type & Class: Creature - Insect
Pow/Tough: 2/1
Card Text: Red spells and white spells you play cost 1 less to play.

This in the only playable Familiar in any sort of constructed play, because of its power equal to casting cost. The ability to play Armageddon, Disenchant, and Avalanche Riders for a mana less could accelerate a land kill deck, and with multiples, large multi-colored creatures can be down in a hurry.

Card Title: Doomsday Specter
Card Color: Multicolored
Casting Cost: 2UB
Type & Class: Creature - Specter
Pow/Tough: 2/3
Card Text: Flying. When Doomsday Specter comes into play, return a blue or black creature you control to its owner's hand. Whenever Doomsday Specter deals combat damage to a player, look at that player's hand and choose a card from it. The player discards that card.

Well, although it has gating, the power of Coercioning your opponent is really solid in a black four-cast. I think that this card has real potential in a heavy black beatdown deck, and is a must-kill when it hits the table.

Card Title: Eladamri's Call
Card Color: Multicolored
Casting Cost: GW
Type & Class: Instant
Card Text: Search your library for a creature card, reveal that card, and put it into your hand. Then shuffle your library.

This is a better remake of Worldly Tutor, though not as casting cost friendly. Getting the card into your hand makes this card a better top-deck than the original, and I guarantee that this card will get restricted in 5 Color, because of its ability to tutor.

Card Title: Gerrard's Command
Card Color: Multicolored
Casting Cost: GW Type & Class: Instant
Card Text: Untap target creature. It gets +3/+3 until end of turn.

ďI command this Derelor to untap and block your Solíkanar!Ē Yeah, thatís what Iíll be saying in mad team games of 5 Color. I think that is when this card will really shine. Telling your teammate to swing with his beast, and then being able to take down another fatty seems really good. This instant will prove game-changing in 5 Color team games, and strike new fear into the opposing team.

Card Title: Hull Breach
Card Color: Multicolored
Casting Cost: RG
Type & Class: Sorcery
Card Text: Choose one - Destroy target artifact; or destroy target enchantment; or destroy target artifact and target enchantment.

Man, this card is a Sorcery, Iím sad. Oh wait, no Iím not. Being able to destroy my opponentís Sylvan Library and Fellwar Stone on turn 3 is perhaps the thing that 5 Color has been waiting for. Finally a great card to tutor for when your opponent has a little Blueprints/Stormbind action going.
I suspect that at least 50% of decks will be playing this card within the next few months.

Card Title: Questing Phelddagrif
Card Color: Multicolored
Casting Cost: 1GWU
Type & Class: Creature - Phelddagrif
Pow/Tough: 4/4 Card Text: G: Questing Phelddagrif gets +1/+1 until end of turn. Target opponent puts a 1/1 green Hippo creature token into play. W: Questing Phelddagrif gains protection from black and from red until end of turn. Target opponent gains 2 life. U: Questing Phelddagrif gains flying until end of turn. Target opponent may draw a card.

While not as good as the original, giving pro black and red, makes this card very good against most kill in 5 Color. Also, it is not a Legend like the original, and should see a fair amount of 5 Color play.

Card Title: Shivan Wurm
Card Color: Multicolored
Casting Cost: 3RG
Type & Class: Creature - Wurm
Pow/Tough: 7/7
Card Text: Trample. When Shivan Wurm comes into play, return a red or green creature you control to its owner's hand.

This guy is a no-brainer. I didnít have to deal with one at prerelease, and Iím glad. Getting back a Blastoderm is the safest way to cast this guy, and with a Birds of Paradise or Quirion Dryad, you can accelerate this into a turn 4 monstrosity.
Oh yeah, this guy is okay in constructed, too.

Card Title: Terminate
Card Color: Multicolored
Casting Cost: BR
Type & Class: Instant
Card Text: Destroy target creature. It can't be regenerated.

No comment.

Card Title: Mana Cylix
Card Color: Artifact
Casting Cost: 1
Type & Class: Artifact
Card Text: 1, T: Add one mana of any color to your mana pool.

I donít think that this card is as good as Mana Prism or Fellwar Stone. It gives no mana by itself, therefore not accelerating you at all, though it is helpful to get mana that you donít have. I forsee this card getting played for a bit in 5 Color, then giving way toÖ

Card Title: Star Compass
Card Color: Artifact
Casting Cost: 2
Type & Class: Artifact
Card Text: Star Compass comes into play tapped. T: Add to your mana pool one mana of any color a basic land you control could produce.

The Artifact version of Reflecting Pool should see a fair amount of play. This card increases in play value with the addition of the Lair Lands, being able to get a wide variety of mana colors on turn 4.

Card Title: Skyship Weatherlight
Card Color: Artifact
Casting Cost: 4
Type & Class: Legendary Artifact
Card Text: When Skyship Weatherlight comes into play, search your library for any number of artifact and/or creature cards and remove them from the game. Then shuffle your library. 4, T: Choose a card at random that was removed from the game with Skyship Weatherlight. Put that card into your hand.

In a format where tutor cards are restricted, this thing is at the top of the list to go next. I suspect that this will see some play, though I think of it as an overcosted, narrow version of Mangaraís Tome.

Card Title: Forsaken City
Type & Class: Land
Card Text: Forsaken City doesn't untap during your untap step. At the beginning of your upkeep, you may remove a card in your hand from the game. If you do, untap Forsaken City. T: Add one mana of any color to your mana pool.

Iím not sure about this, though clearly it is no City of Brass. That is what we compare all five-mana producing lands to, right?
I think that this IS playable, and will probably get a fair amount of use.

Card Title: Meteor Crater
Type & Class: Land
Card Text: T: Choose a color of a permanent you control. Add one mana of that color to your mana pool.

Not a great early drop, and not useable with artifacts, unfortunately, however this land is still solid, and will see some play.

Card Title: Terminal Moraine
Type & Class: Land
Card Text: T: Add one colorless mana to your mana pool. 2, T, Sacrifice Terminal Moraine: Search your library for a basic land card and put that card into play tapped. Then shuffle your library.

This is a great drop early, and on turn 3, go dig up the land that you need. Canít get Wastelanded when you have mana open, but puts the land into play tapped. Still shuffles up the Sylvan, though.

Okay, thatís the list of highly playable cards for 5 Color. Look over your deck, and see what you want to add to your own ď5.Ē This set is highly dynamic in its solid creatures, and amazing removal, perhaps the best weíve seen in any set in years.
Most of the ďsac a land kickersĒ are astounding, and look for the evasion creatures to make a splash in 5 Color decks across the board.

Look for new banned and restricted cards from this set coming soon at the 5 Color homepage.
www.5-color.com

Kurtis ďFat ManĒ Hahn
Creator of 5 Color Magic

Read More Articles by Kurtis Hahn!

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