By Koh Tshek Zen & Jeremy Say
Happy New Year 2017 everybody, and it’s great to have it start off with Magic The Gathering’s (MTG) new release. Say hello to Aether Revolt, the second and final set of the Kaladesh block. Thankfully the release is not far away, time to mark your calendars people – on the 21st of January 2017, as we get to see how Kaladesh’s story unfolds.
We are embroiled rebellion and oppression as the governing Consulate performs crackdowns, confiscating inventions and detaining many of the genius inventors from the Inventors’ Fair. Like all oppressions, those in power claim that these actions are for the safety of the citizens, bullshit. It becomes clear that the Planeswalker Tezzeret is orchestrating from behind the shadows a nefarious plot. It’s up to the renegades led by Chandra and Pia Nalaar to fight back. Now which side will you choose?
So enough geeking out over lore, let get to the two new mechanics that have been introduced in this latest set. We have “Revolt” and “Improvise” to play with alongside two recurring mechanics from the previous set, “Energy” and “Crew”.
Starting with “Revolt”, an ability that is triggered when a permanent you control [Lands, artifacts, enchantments, creatures, planeswalkers] leaves the battlefield on the same turn that you cast the card. This can grant you extra bonuses ranging from gaining a “+1/+1” counter to destroying an enemy permanent.
Then there is “Improvise”, an ability that rewards players who play artifact-predominant decks. Think of it as the cousin to “Affinity” from a while back, as it provides players the option to tap their artifacts for 1 colorless mana to help cast the cards with the “Improvise” mechanic. This acceleration allows the casting of cards with higher cost earlier in the game to provide a distinct tempo advantage. This happens to be similar as well to the “Convoke” ability last seen on M15 cards.
Moving on to some of the significant cards printed in this artifact-focussed set – the two recurring characters have been printed as planeswalkers with new abilities. On one side you have the protagonist Ajani Unyielding and the antagonist Tezzeret the Schemer. Other interesting cards you should keep an eye on are Paradox Engine, FATAL Push, “Baral, Chief of Compliance”, Aethersphere Harvester and Heart of Kiran.
In light of the recent announcement by Wizards regarding the latest “Banned and Restricted List” for Standard format including “Emrakul, the Promised End”, Reflector Mage and Smuggler’s Copter, we look forward to seeing how these new powerful cards may shape the new Standard meta in the weeks to come.
So what are you all waiting for? Join the revolution and have some fun by heading out to your nearest store for pre-release Sealed and Drafts.