Daily Dose of Guilds of Ravnica – Split in two
Welcome to the second week of the Daily Dose of Guilds of Ravnica! After last week’s review of the latest mechanics, this week I’m delving into some new preview cards from the set.
There are a lot of new cards to choose from and I was split on which cards to talk about today…
See what I did there? That’s right: split cards are back in Guilds of Ravnica!
It’s already been announced that there will be two cycles of these split cards in the new set, with one cycle (one per guild) at uncommon, and one cycle (one per guilds) at rare. The new border has changed the look of split cards, so they might take some adjusting to get used to. Another change is that the first half of the cards use their guild’s hybrid mana, while the other half uses one of each mana of their guild. I’ve always been a fan of split cards as they give you versatility by adding choices to your deck. That being said, some split cards will only have one desirable half to them, but there will be times when both sides of a split card will be worthwhile.
To start off, I’m going to be talking about a Golgari split card where both halves will help you kill some threats. Let’s start things off with Status // Statue:
Let’s start off with the Status half of this card. There are some obvious combat trick scenarios where Status will be great. Trading a small creature up for your opponent’s heavy hitters is often worth the extra card.
What I’m more interested in is finding more devious ways to take advantage of this spell. For example, using it with creatures that have enter the battlefield abilities that deal damage. The dream would be to use this with Goblin Chainwhirler, but I’ll stick to cards that at least have green or black in the casting cost. For example, with Skeleton Archer‘s ability on the stack, you can cast Status to kill off any creature on the battlefield. Or give an Atzocan Archer deathtouch when you play it so that when it fights with another creature it will be a guaranteed kill.
If killing one creature just isn’t enough, you can always cast Raging Swordtooth, cast Status with its trigger on the stack, and kill off every other creature on the battlefield.
When it comes to the Statue half of the card, you get an upgraded Putrefy. This is a very solid instant removal spell that will see a lot of play.
Next up is a Boros card that helps you do what Boros likes to do, attack for tons of damage. Here is Response // Resurgence:
The Response half of the card in particular is a great way to remove almost any attacker from combat. Outside of some large Dinosaurs and Dragons,there will be little Response’s five damage won’t able to kill.
The more intriguing half of this card to me is Resurgence. To start off, you get to give all of your creatures first strike and vigilance. On their own, each of these abilities is impressive. Combined however, they turn your creatures into attacking machines! Resurgence also puts your opponent into potentially tough decisions since, if they choose not to block or are unable to block any of your attackers, first strike turns into a pseudo-double strike ability thanks to an additional attack and main phase.
With a lot of Boros Mentor creatures having high power and low toughness, Resurgence will allow you to deal heavy damage and even potentially trigger the Mentor mechanic multiple times.
Finally, I want to talk about a card that can help you win the card advantage race with either half of the card. Let’s take a look at Find // Finality:
Thanks to Undergrowth, there will plenty of cards that help you get creature cards into your graveyard. Even without that, some of your best creatures will inevitably make their way into the graveyard over the course of the game. Being able to get back two of your best creatures for only two mana may just allow you to have enough mana to cast them in the same turn. Gaining card advantage with the Find half of this card can go a long way in a long, grindy game.
On the other hand, Finality is an expensive way to clear the battlefield of creatures. I’m not a big fan of this half of the card since six mana can be quite a lot, to the point where you might be dead against an aggressive deck by turn six. But if played successfully, Finality can leave you with the only creature standing on the battlefield.
I’m so happy to see split cards back in Standard, and I can’t wait to see what the rest of the cycle of split cards will bring to the table. What is your favourite split card so far?
Thanks again for reading the Daily Dose of Guilds of Ravnica. Join me again tomorrow as I continue to look at some of the new cards for Guilds of Ravnica!