All of them!
Thanks so much for reading everyone and I’ll catch you later!
But seriously, I hope you all have been keeping up with all the Unstable previews and, if you have, I hoped you’ve been as hyped for it as I’ve been. I don’t recall ever being this excited about Unglued or Unhinged. They were neat, but I never felt compelled to actually buy any product. This time feels significantly different, and I’m not sure what to attribute that too.
It could be a number of factors, the most likely of which are that the set seems much, much more fun, that there is significantly more marketing power behind it than when Unglued and Unhinged were released, that Magic design has come a long way since then, and that I’ve been playing with exclusively Unhinged lands for years and I can’t want to try replacing them with Unstable lands.
Whatever the reason, the set looks wonderful and has some of the most out-of-the-box designs I’ve ever seen. While I don’t like putting cards in the Cube that require messing with the real world too much (cards like Better Than One or Skull Saucer), cards like Summon the Pack or Spike, Tournament Grinder are too fun not to try. So today I want to go over some of the other cards in Unstable that stand out to me as great (or fun) additions to Cube.
Baron Von Count
One of my favorite things about this card is that is has so many references to old-timey comic book villains. The creature type is also Human Villain, so there’s that. If Baron Von Count was solely a 3/3 for 3, it would be pretty unimpressive, even though those stats are very average. The fact that this card says “destroy target player on it” is what appeals to me, because what a ridiculous line of text!
If this only triggered on mana cost, that would be one thing and likely very difficult to trigger at all. But it also triggers on text box, power, and toughness. That’s a lot of ways to get from five to one and if you pick this early enough it’s pretty easy to build around and/or protect. Like I said, this isn’t going to be on the power level of Griselbrand in Cubes, but it should be fun when it’s happening.
A card in Cube that lets you rearrange your deck is certainly broken. That is, if there wasn’t a time restriction here. 10 seconds isn’t a lot, but it’s definitely manageable when you’re dealing with 40 cards instead of 60. While 6 mana is certainly expensive, it’s hard to argue that the effect of this card is pretty game-winning. Need removal? Need a win condition? Just need some way to draw cards? Have them all, in any order you like! Don’t be fooled by this card and assume you have to arrange your entire deck—simply arranging the top 5 or 10 cards should give you more than enough of an advantage to take over any game.
Summon the Pack
Speaking of Summon the Pack, this card is amazing, and it’s basically an instant win in Cube I imagine. But there’s certainly a catch: You don’t need to require players to bring extra packs, or even need to keep extra packs on hand yourself. You simply make the pack out of your undrafted Cube cards. This is not only more efficient, the possible creatures and effects will be significantly more powerful and on par with the other decks and cards in the format. Will this be too powerful? It’s possible. Like I said, it’s basically an instant win in Cube. All you need is maybe two or three Cube-specific creatures from this card, and you should be good to go. Everything else is just gravy.
I can’t even with this card. It turns your library into a creature. 37 cards? Enjoy your 37/37 and hope you opponent doesn’t have an unconditional removal spell. I have to assume that your library would have haste because it was in play at the beginning of the turn? Unless libraries aren’t considering as being in play? We’ll have to wait for the 60+ page FAQ that’s accompanying Unstable, but either way, this is an awesome card.
Super-Duper Death Ray
This card isn’t overly powerful. Heck, it isn’t really even that “unstable.” It’s basically the equivalent of what Soulfire Grand Master does for your spells when it gives them lifelink. We also have cards like Puncture Blast, which is a damage-based spell that had wither. In fact, there’s actually a legendary card in Elder Scrolls: Legends, Ancano, that gives your spells breakthrough, which is the game’s equivalent of trample. I think this is a great design, and I wouldn’t be surprised if this was just a normal-but-infrequent part of burn spells at some point in the future.
A little bit Impulse, a little bit Future Sight, this isn’t too strong, but doesn’t really require anything ridiculous either. You have the benefit of being able to pick from four different cards during every draw step, which is amazing in Cube, but you could also reveal something like four lands. Let’s be real though: as far as drawbacks go, this is a minor one. If your opponent manages to destroy Split Screen, you simply shuffle your decks back together and play as normal. This is a cool addition and give a lot of card selection to decks that otherwise might not have it.
So those are some of my favorite Unstable cards for Cubing! Be sure and let me know which cards you are looking forward to trying out in the comments.