This article is going to be a lot easier to write than the last few, because this time I get to write about some actual sweet cards. In the last article I was struggling to find playables, but today we’re going to get into the wonderful world of 4+ mana colorless spells.
So it’s pretty obvious that artifacts are insanely good in Mental Magic. So good, in fact, that some of the most broken cards in Magic’s history have been artifacts. When you consider the fact that you have things like [mtg_card]Sol Ring[/mtg_card], [mtg_card]Batterskull[/mtg_card], [mtg_card]Black Lotus[/mtg_card], and all of the Moxen, talking about 4 CMC artifacts feels right on par with the “theme” of bad cards that this article series is based on. There are some pretty solid cards that might get overshadowed by the obvious power, and the hope is to shed some light on these.
The first few I’d like to point out are all equipment. Though they vary in power, these dinglehoppers are all good in different situations. Since all of your Utopia are Swamps, [mtg_card]Nightmare Lash[/mtg_card] and [mtg_card]Lashwrithe[/mtg_card] are both great ways to turn even the smallest 1/1 into a gigantic beater. [mtg_card]Bonehoard[/mtg_card] is also a good one, and is especially funny when equipped to a [mtg_card]Tarmogoyf[/mtg_card]. I actually have used [mtg_card]Grappling Hook[/mtg_card] on my [mtg_card]Phyrexian Crusader[/mtg_card] to break through an otherwise unwinnable board state, and you could too! [mtg_card]Manaforce Mace[/mtg_card], while maybe not as good as the two swamp-centric ones above, is always going to be a +5/+5 equipment, which is no slouch.
As far as creatures go, the pickings are kind of slim, but the obviously powerful ones are VERY obvious. The clear winner is going to be [mtg_card]Etched Oracle[/mtg_card], which is basically a 5 mana [mtg_card]Ancestral Recall[/mtg_card]. It’s pretty hard to beat that, but if you’re on a pillowfort strategy you might find [mtg_card]Silent Arbiter[/mtg_card] appealing as well. I’ve also cast it as [mtg_card]Extruder[/mtg_card] before as a ghetto version of [mtg_card]Arcbound Ravager[/mtg_card], which ended up being pretty sweet since he doesn’t require the creature you put the counters onto to be an artifact.
As far as noncreature artifacts are concerned, you get a bunch of sweet stuff. [mtg_card]Cursed Rack[/mtg_card] (Or [mtg_card]Rackling[/mtg_card], whichever.) is a fun card to play with, especially since you can probably also get [mtg_card]The Rack[/mtg_card] or [mtg_card]Shrieking Affliction[/mtg_card] out easily enough, and the format has [mtg_card]Hymn to Tourach[/mtg_card] and [mtg_card]Mind Twist[/mtg_card] so this plan is the real deal. [mtg_card]Goblin Charbelcher[/mtg_card] is insane in a cube that doesn’t have any lands in it. It’s mediocre in ours because we have lands. [mtg_card]Nevinyrral’s Disk[/mtg_card] is just as good here as it would be in any other format, so it’s always a good one to keep in mind if things are getting out of control, as well as [mtg_card]Perilous Vault[/mtg_card]. I’ve even played [mtg_card]Vedalken Orrery[/mtg_card] if I just thought I would want to play everything at instant speed.
Hell, even [mtg_card]Teferi’s Puzzle Box[/mtg_card], [mtg_card]Smokestack[/mtg_card], and [mtg_card]Vedalken Orrery[/mtg_card] are at 4. Have you guys ever read the text on those cards? Because they do some pretty awesome stuff. These probably don’t need to be explained. They’re just blatantly powerful.
There are actually a lot of spells at 6 mana that do some impressive stuff if the game ever degenerates to that point. One of my personal favorite 6 mana colorless spells happens to be [mtg_card]Argentum Armor[/mtg_card], as it brings me right back to the old [mtg_card]Quest for the Holy Relic[/mtg_card] deck that I played back in college. (Which sadly doesn’t work in Mental Magic, booooo!)
Your most “powerful” spell at that CMC is probably going to be [mtg_card]Mindslaver[/mtg_card] a lot of the time. As boring as that may sound, [mtg_card]Mindslaver[/mtg_card] is a very skill-intensive card in this format for obvious reasons. With so many ways to turn your opponent’s spells into “bad” cards simply by playing them, taking their entire turn for them can often result in a huge blowout. I watched our judge friend [mtg_card]Mindslaver[/mtg_card] his opponent, cast a [mtg_card]Nantuko Husk[/mtg_card], and then proceed to play 3 other spells (both 1drops that could have been [mtg_card]Swords to Plowshares[/mtg_card] and [mtg_card]Path to Exile[/mtg_card]) as creatures and just eat them as a discard outlet, then he made his opponent bolt himself. It was hilarious.
As far as shenanigans go, you’ve got [mtg_card]Mycosynth Lattice[/mtg_card] at 6, which means [mtg_card]March of the Machines[/mtg_card] is a thing. You’ve also got [mtg_card]Thopter Assembly[/mtg_card] and [mtg_card]Time Sieve[/mtg_card]. [mtg_card]Soul of New Phyrexia[/mtg_card] is also something you can keep an eye out for if you end up discarding a 6 CMC spell. Or you can always go with the most “fair” option and play [mtg_card]Wurmcoil Engine[/mtg_card].
So while a lot of people jump to the “broken” CMCs when thinking of artifacts, (0, 2, and 3) as it turns out there is a lot of play at these other CMCs as well. Colorless is one of the more “broken” colors in the format, and in our cube I’ve had to keep a close eye on just how good they are.