Super Flexible Golgari Removal Spell
September 8, 2012 | Posted by Dee
I’ve been researching and analyzing the best decks from this Standard season to learn how to become a better deck builder. One of the things I’ve noticed is how important cheap creatures and spells are.
Most of the decks I’ve seen have a lot of cards that cost three or less mana. If you don’t have enough of these cards, you can easily fall way behind against a deck with many early plays.
Even the decks with many expensive spells must play a lot of cheap mana creatures and/or ramp spells to keep up. Otherwise, they’ll just get run over in the first couple of turns.
Two days ago, Wizards previewed a removal spell in the Golgari guild that can only destroy permanents with a converted mana cost of three or less.
This restriction can be a drawback if you need to kill something like Restoration Angel. However, cheap permanents are very important for most decks so I’m sure you’ll usually find a decent target to kill with the card.
Check out Abrupt Decay below.
The first ability perfect for stopping a flipped Delver of Secrets. If they have a counterspell to protect Delver, it won’t do them any good.
Now Mana Leak won’t be back but there is a decent replacement for it in Syncopate.
Abrupt Decay is an instant so it can help you spend your mana efficiently. For example, your opponent plays a creature on turn two. You can kill it on his turn with Abrupt Decay and then play a three-drop like Geralf’s Messenger on turn three.
This play would be impossible if the card was a sorcery. You wouldn’t be able to use your mana on turn two. Then, on turn three, you have to choose between destroying your opponent’s creature or casting Geralf’s Messenger.
The most exciting words on Abrupt Decay are definitely “nonland permanent.” You’ll probably be using it mostly to kill creatures, but having the flexibility to kill non-creatures is very good.
For example, even though Scars block is leaving Standard soon, there will still be a powerful equipment card in the format. Runechanter’s Pike was printed in Innistrad so it won’t be leaving. It can be pretty deadly so it’s good to be able to destroy it with Abrupt Decay.
Again, you don’t have to worry about it being countered and it’s an instant, so you can wreck your opponent during his combat phase by destroying Pike.
Oblivion Ring figures to be a important card to exile creatures like Gravecrawler and Strangleroot Geist. Abrupt Decay smashes that card to free your creatures.
Against token decks, you can hit Intangible Virtue. If you’re playing undying creatures, you can hit Grafdigger’s Cage to make undying work again.
Some Delver decks are using Spectral Flight to protect Geist of Saint Traft. You can surprise your opponent by destroying that enchantment and then blocking Geist of Saint Traft with a ground creature.
The biggest targets are planeswalkers. Abrupt Decay can deal with Ajani, Caller of the Pride and Liliana of the Veil. These two cards are pretty good because they can take over a game.
Because of its flexibility and the value of cheap permanents, I think Abrupt Decay will see a lot of play in the new Standard format.