Sunday 25 June 2017

Time to Ban Vault and Monolith

Grim Monolith
While Mana Vault and Grim Monolith are not the same power level of Sol Ring, Black Lotus, Fastbond or cards of that ilk they are very much top tier in unpowered cubes. They also have the issue of many older cards in that they are rather polar. Either they do little to nothing or they allow for utterly unfair things that your opponent has very little chance of interacting with. I don't mind powerful cards but I do mind those which are so extreme in their performance. Things that are often unbeatable or can give near unbeatable openers just don't make the game better at all. A RDW has so few outs to a turn three Wurmcoil Engine courtesy of these fast mana cards. The same is true of most decks without non destroy removal options. The more the cube fills out with newer better designed cards that are high power but not polar in performance the more these two cards stand out as offenders. Bad decks can just ram in these and steal a lot of games. Most cube games in my unpowered cube are close interactive affairs in which choices matter a lot. It is also noticeable that games with Grim and Vault are the least like that.

Mana VaultI thought Strip Mine was a clear ban along with the rest of the power yet I have taken many years to come round to considering Vault and Grim in the honorary power. Vault and Grim certainly allow for more broken things than Strip Mine and they are certainly a lot more polar. The both are guilty of the offences of getting free wins and for uniteractive games. Certainly Strip Mine allows for less potential interaction than most other cards but still. If I am banning Strip Mine I should certainly be banning these. More fun will be had without them in the midrange cube and that is the cube of choice for close games. I am all for some powered cube sillyness now and again so that I can do insanely powerful things and go off with infinities of this and that or drawing my whole deck a few times over. That is where Grim and Vault belong and so that is what I shall be doing! Next card that needs some serious consideration for being uninteractive, potentially over powered and certainly no fun is Ashiok, Nightmare Weaver...

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