Previous Guilds of Ravnica Reviews
Dimir Locket, Golgari Locket, Izzet Locket, Selesnya Locket
I’ve played a few Sealeds, and Lockets have been… fine. They are playable if you have a medium to high curve, and it is nice that you can crack them for two cards later in the game, but I’m still not thrilled to spend 3 mana on them early (which makes them dubious acceleration). I like these quite a bit more than any other 3-mana rocks in the past, so I’m curious to see how people rate them in a month.
If you’re jamming Boros Locket, you’re probably doing it wrong. Boros decks tend to have a low curve and don’t care about card draw, so this stands markedly behind the rest of the Lockets.
Limited: 3.5 // 4.0
In a 2-color deck, this is still pretty sweet. It’s a 2-mana 2/2 that can shoot something when needed, which is relevant at all stages of the game. It’s worth playing half-color Gates (like a Dimir Guildgate in an Izzet deck) if you have this, as extra counters are quite valuable. Once you can bring this back, it’s a win condition by itself, and will often come out as a 4/4 or 5/5, which is amazing. I’d definitely try and shoot for 5-color if I saw this early, as it’s a huge payoff.
In a 2-color deck, this is abysmal, and even in a 3-color deck I’m not thrilled. Only once I was 4 or 5 colors would I want Lantern, which won’t be most decks you’ll draft.
I’m not quite sure yet how good the Gate deck is, but Gargoyle is a solid payoff. With 2 Gates in play, this is good, and at 3+ it’s very good. The rating reflects a deck with 5+ Gates, and I wouldn’t play this with fewer than that.
Glaive of the Guildpact
This looks really bad to me. The Gate deck is naturally going to be a defensive one, and this is a very aggressive set of abilities. I’ll pass.
Limited: 2.5 // 3.5
In a deck with just a couple gold spells, this is playable, and once you hit 5+ it becomes a respectable threat. At 4/4 or greater, it truly does begin to rampage, and it’s not hard to imagine this just going ham.
The mana-to-effect ratio here isn’t fantastic, and all the guilds have access to better removal options. Still, this does kill most of what needs killing, so don’t be ashamed if you’ve gotta play it.
Wand of Vertebrae
This one, however, should make you feel ashamed. This may form the skeleton of the nut Golgari undergrowth deck, but it’s too low impact and slow for me to take it seriously.
Boros Guildgate, Izzet Guildgate, Golgari Guildgate, Dimir Guildgate, Selesnya Guildgate
If you are 2 colors, I’d take Guildgates reasonably high, over most commons of the same level (especially once you have enough playables). If you have any of the uncommon cycle that costs AABB, these go up a notch, and once you’re 3+ colors they definitely go up. In general, most people probably take these too low, so it’s possible you should think of them as a 3.25, if that helps.
I’d only play this if I were 3+ colors, and even then I’d hope to do better. It’s just so clunky, even though it does count as a Gate for the cards that care about that.
In a deck with three or more gold creatures, I’d play this, and once you are at five or more I’d definitely be happy doing so. It’s a little clunky, but the payoff of having your land produce +1/+1 counters is real.
These two guilds feel the most behind the rest. They definitely have good things going on, but they are either more situational (Izzet) or harder to enable (Golgari) than the other guilds. The good version of any guild deck is going to be great, but I think these two guilds will come together less often than the other three.
These three seem quite close, so the ranking is (somewhat) arbitrary. I like that all of Selesnya’s cards are good, and Conclave Tribunal is the best removal in the set. Curving into Siege Wurm and Rosemane Centaur is great, even if there aren’t quite as many tokens as previous incarnations of convoke.
Dimir has a very consistent game plan, and I like the strength of its commons (Watcher in the Mist and Deadly Visit in particular). The main weakness is that the nut Dimir deck still isn’t that focused and can be a little clunky.
Boros looks pretty good, and Skyknight Legionnaire is always great, but mentor can be hard to enable at times. At the end of the day, all the guilds seem viable, and I’m really curious to see how they shake out. Thanks for reading—it’s time for me to stop reviewing and start battling!