Whatever happened to the Fifth Color?

Discussion in 'CPA/WOTC Magic Issues' started by Cateran Emperor, Mar 8, 2001.


What happened to Black in 7th?

R.I.P. Black 0 vote(s) 0.0%
It's not THAT bad just yet, but it's getting worse. 12 vote(s) 44.4%
Stop whining, Black got Nightmare. Obviously, THIS is the fatty that represents Black 8 vote(s) 29.6%
WotC: "We can't have another Black Summer. Let's just replace the good stuff in 6th with blatantly 7 vote(s) 25.9%
  1. Apollo Bird Boy

    But Deathgazer isn't good in the environment. Deathgazer is not good against Rebels at all. They couldn't care less about losing one creature; they just replace them. All they have to do is attack you with bears until you block one with the 'Gazer. Then, you lose. And attacking isn't good either, cause they'll just block it with a random bear, then summon 2 more at the end of your tun. Then, you'll lose.

    All it does at best is kill one creature, and it isn't even your choice of which creature. Strictly speaking, you'd be better off with a Terror, Banish, or any one of those other cards. 4 mana to make your opponent lose a creature of his choice means nothing.

    And then, I'd refer you to Cat's comments above; he pretty much tells you why every one of those cards is not any good.
  2. arhar Member

    Well, look at it this way: the Urza vs Phyrexia storyline is nearing its completion, and who do you think wins in the end?

    Evil ultimately loses because it turns on itself.
    Margarety Weis and Tracy Hickman, Dragons of Spring Dawning
  3. DÛke Memento Mori


    Cateran Emperor, I thought I was having a REAL conversation until you gave a "list" of what Black MUST have in order to "make it good, even slightly so"...

    ...EVEN if the cards I mentioned were ALL bad...due to your demanding attitude, and anyone else's actually, will not be able to build ANY Black deck that's at least decent. You hope for things, and forget the things you already have. What a distraction.

    Please, don’t' ask me to build a Black deck that's "fairly powerful". I don't play Magic...it's been long since I've build a deck, BUT...I know each color, and what that color must do in order to be good.

    Just by looking at the environment, and seeing Thrashing Wumpus, Terror, Duress, Unmask, Soul Feast, Snuff-Out, Massacre, and a couple of other cards...I KNOW that there's SOMETHING that could be somehow put together to form something of respect. To me, it's impossible, with the existence of those cards, not to be able to build something fairly powerful.

    Stop hoping for cards, and start looking at the cards you already have. Bad advice? Maybe, but something tells me that you've been hoping too much.
  4. Gizmo Composite: 1860

    Looking at black right now is fairly pointless, because it can`t beat Fires. 7th won`t help it beat Fires.

    But when MBC rotate out we will see the two problem cards leave (Burst and Derm) and then we will get the chance to reevaluate what black has to offer. Comparing old black cards to new black cards is futile, because every color has worse cards than it had this time last year because MBC and IBC are both terrible sets of cards - deliberately so because all the casual players were complaining about cards being too powerful.

    Black has plenty of very strong cards. But don`t expect to be able to build mono-black as only Rebels are strong enough to fund a mono-coloured deck in the current environment, so looking for mono-black decks to be strong is also wrong - they aren`t MEANT to be playable.
    What is most important is what is going to be in the next standalone expansion, as it is unfortunate that a lot of powerful black cards were in MBC - the expansion that was very unkind to black decks because of Derm and Burst. When Derm and Burst go, so do Chillers, Wumpii, Massacre, Snuff Out, Nethers...etc...

    Right now black is weak. This time last year white was weak. The year before green was weak. I remember a time when red was weak, pre-Sligh in 1996. Blue was never weak. Somebody always has to be bottom of the pile (it`s just never blue).
    I admit I find it unusual that Corrupt and Nightmare are included when the trend seems to be to encourage dual-colour decks, but so what - Crusade is going to look equally silly when Rebels go out and WWeenie drops off the face of the planet.

    I think this is just another whinge about Dark Ritual. Well get this, I`m a black mage and I say good riddance to Dark Ritual - it was horrid, unfair, and spent most of the 7 years it has been playable breaking other cards. Good riddance, and I said as much twelve months ago:

    - Me, 14/3/2000
  5. Hetemti The Wide-Awake Nightmare

    Yes, Dark Ritual let the black mage cheat. Boo Hoo.

    What do you expect from the color of EVIL, of CORRUPTION? It's supposed to cheat! That's what makes it diabolical.

    Black is supposed to get HUGE effects cheaply, either by paying life, saccing perminants, or reserving deck slots for assistance cards, like Tutor and Ritual. What balances black is that it's bombs often hurt their masters, and that once it spends it's Tutor(s) and Rituals, it's left to topdeck turn after turn. Drawing a late-game Ritual and not the needed Banish can be fatal for the black mage because he's got no other options. (Note: This is why Necropotence and Yawgmoth's Bargain are broken. They violate the constraint Garfield put on Black, you get fast bombs, but you run out.)

    R&D is supposed to be able to print overpowerd bombs in black. That's what the Ritual is for. Do you think a fifth turn plaguelord will help win the game? Not much, but a third or first turn one says you'd better have a back-up plan.
  6. Cateran Emperor Passed On

    Hetemi makes a good point Giz, Ritual becomes a useless card after turn five or so. Black runs out of steam, and drawing a Ritual late game is the equivalent to skipping a draw step.

    Black wouldn't have such a severe problem usually but for one problem. All of black's good cards are massively expensive. The majority of Black's solid, non-suicidal creatures start at 3BB, being such creatures as Wumpus, Vampires, and Plaguelord.

    Other than discard, black has very few early game plays. It has always relied on the Ritual to speed things up, ever since the days of Hypnotic Specter.

    White always had some weenie to drop, or an enchantment to play.

    Blue saved up its countermagic and played stalling enchantments for when counters were running low.

    Green has always had solid one and two mana creatures, and could always accelerate via elves.

    Red could start firing off burn spells and Goblins.

    Black Ritualed out larger spells faster. or played spells that were powerful but dangerous.

    So what does black do now? Black has no Propagandas or Circles of Protection, no Pouncing Jaguars or Jackal Pups.

    Black is left with remarkably few good spells that do anything at all in the first several turns. A mono black deck in type II has no first turn plays except for ritual, they've taken all of them away. Basically, a black mage can only start a game with several turns getting beaten on before being able to respond.

    And DUke, if you have no idea how Magic works right now(and I don't believe you're that stupid, I know you better than that) then why are you angry at me for saying why your ideas don't work.

    You cannot play a game simply by killing eveything on the board. The main problem I have is black's lack of a solid victory condition. I'm starting to drift towards playing red instead of black because I've become so disillusioned with my favorite color.

    Black has plenty of solid cards right now such as Snuff Out, Massacre, Vendetta, Unmask, and plenty of strange tricks. The entire point I'm making here is that black has no soild creatures to back it all up. Use of those spells hurts a black mage, and a good solid creature is necessary to help stem the tides of enemy creatures. Black has nothing that can do that right now. When Ritual is gone, black will have a large number of creatures that are good now such as the Wumpus, but become quickly useless without the speed offered by the Ritual. A fifth turn Wumpus can take care of Elves, sure, but it will be helpless to stop anything that much larger without massively hurting yourself and anything else.

    That's the problem with black right now. There is no synergy between its creatures and its spells. Its creatures are overcosted or have a drawback, but they can still function when the Ritual goes off. No Ritual leaves black with creatures that are on par mana wise with other colors but have drawbacks. That just doesn't add up to being fair.
  7. DÛke Memento Mori

    ...Cateran Emperor? I'm not angry...just because I didn't add any happy faces, doesn't mean I'm angery [laughs]. :)

    Anyway, I said what I felt, and that was that. I probably agree more or less with what Gizmo previously said. He's the most sensible, in this situation.
  8. Gizmo Composite: 1860

    ...I`m always way more sensible than the rest of you freaks!

    Boo-hoo - black has no good monsters below BB3, boo-hoo.
    Neither does blue.
    Neither does red.
    So what`s your point? In fact black possibly has better monsters than either of those colors. Just because you can`t cast a 3rd-turn PLaguelord you want to take your ball home and won`t try to adapt. If a 5th turn Wumpus is too slow then use Peat Bogs or Diamonds.

    Creatures are poor right now, only green monsters and Ramosian Serbeant and LIn Sivvi are really worth playing below 5cc. Congratulations - you maybe now understand why I was so critical of Invasion and Prophecy and the like. Black has no good creatures. But it has monster spells - Addle, Stupor, with Persecute and Duress returning; Rain Of Tears, Despoil, with Befoul returning; 57 flavors of removal, with Choc And Nut returning.
    And if Ravenous Rats, Chilling Apparition, Plague Spitter, Abyssal Spectre, Blazing Spectre, Derelor, Evil-Eye, Thrashing Wumpus, Avatar Of Woe aren`t good enough for you I suggest you check your reality at the door. Plaguelord is overpowered for the new Type-II - it would own the board when it came down.

    Ritual goes. Boo-hoo. Good riddance. It was broken. Black was meant to gain an advantage by trading resources, but Ritual allows it do that too effectively, just like Necro did - the Ritual often gives you just as much card advantage as Necroptence does because it brings the end of the game so much closer. Remember that Ritual was one fo the original 3-1 cycle of cards, and both Ancestral Recall and Lightning Bolt have proven that 3-1 is too effective, and Ritual was far more broken than Bolt - it just took longer for people to realise it.

    Black has never really had strong creatures. It`s true, if you care to look. Apart from weenie decks the slower black decks have never really had the benefit of strong creatures below 5cc, and the ones they did have were all artifacts, like Ticking Gnomes and Steel Golem.
    Black has never had creatures. You name Plaguelord, I name Wumpus as a fairly good analogy of Plaguelord - they fill the same slot in the expansion (competitively costed black creature with a strong removal ability). After Plaguelord what other non-weenie creature were you thinking of? Rats? Still in. Derelor? Still in. Abyssal Spectre? Still in. Where do you go next - Hypnotics and Masticores? Gone, and good riddance - they were the two most powerful creatures ever printed. I don`t know which black creatures you are thinking of, because I sure as hell can`t think of any off the top of my head. In many ways black creatures are better than ever - give me Plague Spitter over Crypt Rats any day of the week, Phyrexian Scuta is a fatty beating stick to compare with Juzam, Hidden Horror is back, Fallen Angel is still here, etc...etc...etc...
    It just looks as though without Negators, Plaguelords and Skirges you have thrown your dummy out of the pram.

    It`s not often I get fed up with people complaining,because most of the time I`ll be the first to exercise my right to complain. But right now you are complaining about a situation that isn`t even that bad. Don`t blame bad black spells, blame your bad deckbuilding and inability to make the best of a bad situation (two of my best T2 decks are currently almost entirely black).
  9. DÛke Memento Mori

    ...I'm starting to like what Gizmo has to say...

    You see, if you are a true Black beast, like ME, and obviously like Gizmo and Istanbul...you wouldn't have to worry about the evolution. In here, Gizmo states the most perfectly said opinion(s)...and again, look...HE agrees that Thrashing Wumpus is an ideal fatty. We had Plaguelord, now we have Wumpus - what's the big deal? The environment obviously changed, and so must the cards.

    In other an another thread, Istanbul tried to enlighten us with some of his decks, but no...some of us have to completely shoot down his deck. It's like an "auto" thing: if he's talking about beating Fires or Rebels with a Black deck, then it's a BAD Black deck. That's unjust, and untrue.

    "What was, was. What is, shall be. Adapt or die." – Istanbul
  10. Apollo Bird Boy

    Which one of you is the real Gizmo?:)

    Also, what does "Throw your dummy out of the pram" mean?
  11. FoundationOfRancor The Gunslinger

    Round three...

  12. Cateran Emperor Passed On

    Damn, Apollo beat me to asking about the "pram" thing. :(

    You know something Giz, you're right - you always do like to exercise your right to complain. Now it's my turn. :p

    I was actually going to ask about the same thing Apollo just asked about: if Black sucks because it can't beat Fires, and two of your best decks are almost entirely black, then what the heck was the point of you typing all of that? You just agreed with me, although from your tone it sounds like you don't realize it yet.

    Red has solid creatures below 3RR (I assume you meant that when you said Red and Blue have no good creatures under 3BB); from big things like Veteran Brawlers to versatile things like Thunderscape Battlemage to even little things like the entire series of Goblins.

    Blue has a whole slew of solid creatures below 5 CC, they actually have their own whole deck. From Cloud Sprites to Troublesome Spirits, and there're always the Fish to back all that up in a whole different deck idea.

    Black does have a few solid creatures in the environment to be sure. Plague Spitter's good against Fires and Rebels (if you Ritual him out to use against their one drops), Chilly's good against Control decks (if you Ritual him out under their counters and keep them from drawing a Wrath), and Trashin' Wumpus is good against almost anything (assuming nothing has Pro Black or a toughness greater than 2). See?

    Now about that whole "pram" thing: does that have anything to do with giving up? Your tone suggested what your dialect couldn't translate. :p
  13. Duel Has Less Posts Than Spiderman

    Black is a losing proposition in seventh as a standalone color. It does, however, provide decent support. It's been too weakened, however, to have much effect.

    Lost: Vampiric tutor
    Found: No replacement.

    Lost: Terror
    Found: Dark Banishing

    What, exactly, makes 7th black worse than 6th black? The loss of Vampiric tutor is all I can see, and, while important, shouldn't decide the entire color.
  14. Gizmo Composite: 1860

    Two of my best decks ARE black. Doesn`t mean they beat Fires, just that they are good decks that lose to Fires.

    Red doesn`t have solid cheap creatures. Veteran Brawlers are terrible, always have been. They currently have Rogue Kavu, he`s good, and maybe Kris Mage is good too. A slew of Goblins? Where? I`ve been going to tournaments for ages and I haven`t seen a Goblin in a long time.

    Blue has one good monster - Troublesome Spirit. Rishadan Airship is NOT a good monster. Skies is a deck of spells - it works because of Gush, Foil, and Wash out. The creatures it plays are incidental. Apart from Troublesome, who is undercosted, but even then without all the ACC spells his disadvantage would be crippling.

    Dummy = pacifier, to you Americans.

    I think you use "Throw your rattle from the pram".

    Okay, so you admit black`s creatures are pretty good. I don`t see why you have to Ritual out Spitter, seeing as when he arrives he kills everything that got there before him apart from Sivvi (which is the one you hit with a removal spell). And the black discard deck is very strong against the counter decks so there is no need to cast the Chiller off a Ritual at all - I include a few Peat Bogs in my decks, but often careful play will get the Chiller past counters. And Wumpus is good because he is a beating stick. Between Wumpus and targetted removal only Derms and Bursts are a problem. And the last time I saw a Pro:Black geeze in play I was drafting - nobody is using Pro:Black guys, not even rebel decks have Nightwinds in.

    I agree with Duel - the difference between 6th and 7th is Tutor. No biggie.
  15. Cateran Emperor Passed On

    First off, who's talking about tournaments? I think we've been talking about two completely different things here without realizing it. It's really annoying by me when the people who play casually at all do so with tournament decks, and so casual play for me has a narrower focus than I'd like it to. As such, I have to be ready with a sideboard and such for anyone to agree to play at all. :(

    Regardless though, you bring up Blasty and Burst again. Those two by themselves are massive problems for Black. With 7th, black loses Perish to stop the un-Hasted ones. That's not a good situation.

    For Plague Spitter, the reason to Ritual him out is to ping off the Elves before they can use their mana to summon their big pals and the Seargeants before they can go up the chain any higher. The Elves and Seargeants become mostly irrelevant to the game once mean old Blastoderm and Sivvi hit the board. Understand?

    Chilly and Peat Bog is actually an okay idea, though I'd still rather start discarding right away with a Ritual.

    Trashin' Wumpus is a losing proposition right now. If he faces down Blasty, you may simply get the equivalent of Blasty gaining trample and Wumpus getting +2/+0 until end of turn. Once again, not a very good deal. Jhovall Queen and Big Gay Al (Sky Marshal) are additional losing situations for Wumpus.

    And don't diss the Brawlers and the Spirit. Just read between the lines and you can see why their drawbacks actually are negligible ones. :cool:
  16. Duel Has Less Posts Than Spiderman

    Right. Black sucks now, eh? You're proving my point: how's seventh hurting it?
  17. Whimsical Adorable Sliver

    Methinks you're missing the point just a tad here. Cat's saying that black doth truly suck stupendously nowadays ... and he's saying that 7th isn't helping any. :)

    Think of this thread as a wake. You get to chat, dicker with friends, but essentially, we're here to observe the passing away of someone ... or something in this case.

    I brought flowers. Where do I put 'em? :D
  18. Apollo Bird Boy

    Wow! In this thread, we have two great phrases!

    "black doth truly suck stupendously"


    "Throw your dummy from the pram."

    BTW, Gizmo, we Americans don't use "dummy" or "pram". I'm guessing pram means playpen, though. Is that right?
  19. Spiderman CPA Man in Tights, Dopey Administrative Assistant

    I think in that thread by Whimsical in General Gizmo said it meant "pacifier".

    [Just so I can make CE post nonsensical :)]
  20. Cateran Emperor Passed On

    *Points up*
    He just said it meant "pacifier"

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