This week in Magic: An Origins preview


Welcome back to another edition of “This week in Magic.” If you haven’t noticed by now, spoilers for Magic Origins have begun popping up in various places all over the internet. I thought we could take some time this week and go over some of the highlights from those spoilers. So far, the set looks good on it’s own, but the real question how will it live up to the current Standard Meta?


The Planeswalkers

The concept of the new planeswalkers is really interesting. In fact, I don’t even know how well these are going to be received by the players. For the most part, we’re so used to just playing them. Now we have to earn them by experiencing their spark. Don’t get me wrong. It’s not like the conditions that need to be met are impossible to accomplish.


Now with that said, here is how I’d rank them in order of playability – that is to say how easy I think it would be to turn them over. At number five would be Nissa. Ramping up to seven land is not that bad, but seven land can be a lot. At number four is Jace. Getting five cards into your library is not a hard task. However, in Standard it can take a little bit longer as compared to other formats. For example, I know I can easily drop a turn two Tasigur. That doesn’t exist in Standard – at least the consistency isn’t there.


At number three is Liliana. Baiting your opponent to kill one of your creatures may be a little tougher with her on the board. Though at some point, they’ll have to stop something. Early aggro is never fun to deal with. She’ll flip eventually. Nearing the end, we have Gideon at number two. He’s a solid one drop to begin with. Getting some friend to swing with for a turn three assault seems reasonable. The questions is if he’ll be alive at the end of it all to flip over. That’s the real question. Finally, at number one is Chandra. I am a fan how how aggressive she is. She even smells of “combo” all over her. Unfortunately, unless you kill your opponent, flipping her is not a may ability. Still, her planeswalker form is probably the strongest out of all the other planeswalker.


Don’t take ranking too seriously now. Even more so, now that I’ve done it, there is a high chance that I will be completely wrong and everything I’ve ranked will prove to go the opposite way.


The reprints

Up to now, we’ve learned of several cards that will be making repeat appearances in Origins. Many will be happy to know that the enemy colored painlands will be coming back. They’ve done really well thus far, and have helped define a very aggressive Standard format. The reason some people will be happy to see them back is mainly for financial reasons. Unless you’re new to the game, then you won’t have to invest in much or anything for a set of these lands.


The one fun thing about core sets from the past has always been the speculation as to what set of dual lands we’ll see. To have a repeat, this can make things a little stale for some players. It would have been nice to the allied colors or another set of land, but we’ve got no choice now.


Another solid reprint is Knight of the White Orchid. If my memory serves me correctly, this card was in a really fun mono white deck that essentially ramped up into the Kozilek, Ulamog, and Emrakul respectively. It played board wipes like Day of Judgement and All is Dust to deal with early threats. The deck also played Pilgrim’s Eye and Everflowing Chalice.


So why am I happy to see this card? It’s because the fall set makes a return to Zendikar. If that means anything, it means that we’ll most likely see a return of the Eldrazi. There is hope for the Knight. Other than that, who can complain about a first striking 2/2 for two?


Of course the biggest surprise thus far has to be the announcement that Goblin Piledriver will be back? How big of an impact will he make in his return. First of all, let’s take a moment to sit back and realize that he hasn’t been around since Onslaught. So that means it’s been about 13 years since he was first printed. When he made his debut, he helped define one of the best tribal decks in Standard. Since then he’s been making his presence known Legacy Goblin decks. Now he’s back.


Standard players may want to watch out for the first few months he’s in Standard. Can you imagine what it’s going to be like when he and Goblin Rabblemaster are on the battlefield at the same time? Luckily, Standard players won’t have a lot of time to deal with it, but who knows what the fall will bring.


The biggest impact, though, will be in Modern. Here’s a small list of other goblins in Modern: Legion Loyalist, Goblin Chieftain, Goblin King, Goblin Rabblemaster, and Goblin Guide. Combine that with one of the most efficient burn packages and we’ve got a problem. By “we” I mean those who will not be playing goblins in Modern.


The new guys in town

On a final note I’m going to end things with the card “Day’s Undoing.” Let me tell you the story of a card called Time Reversal. I jumped on the hype train faster than you can say, “Dumb” when this card was first spoiled. It’s like I was a man possessed.


While this card is significantly cheaper to cast, it comes with the stipulation that your turn end if you cast it during your turn. You may have noticed people started to buy out every copy of Quicken because of this. I don’t think a one mana casting instant to let you cast this as an instant will help its cause. I’m not saying you shouldn’t pre-order this card. Take this as a cautionary tale. If you believe that it is much better than Time Reversal and worth the money, then by all means go for it. I’m not here to stop you. Just think before you leap.


By the way, Time Reversal is available via the online store ranging from $.85-$.89. They also have 18 copies available from both M11 and M12. Just saying…


origins prerelease abnner


About the author

Simeon is now the Community Manager for Battleground Games & Hobbies. If you have any questions or inquiries, then you can reach him at He is also an avid gamer who loves to play board games and video games. He graduated college with a degree in Political Science, and now serves the public by writing about games. You can check that out here. Don’t forget to “like” him on Facebook as well. It’ll update you on all of his newest content. Best of all, you can follow Simeon on Twitter (@SimeonCortezano) for some real time hilarity. Thanks for reading!



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