MTG Commander/Elder Dragon Highlander
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Vilis, Broker Of Blood
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Author:  Sinis [ 2019-Sep-11 3:07 am ]
Post subject:  Re: Vilis, Broker Of Blood

Inkeyes22 wrote:
As far as being in the 99, there are better draw engines.

Like Necropotence? Ad Nauseam?

Not being combative; I legit want to know what's better. It's also worth noting that Vilis 'combos' with most of the black draw out there, since life-for-cards is almost always how it manifests in black.

Author:  Inkeyes22 [ 2019-Sep-11 3:31 am ]
Post subject:  Re: Vilis, Broker Of Blood

Sinis wrote:
Inkeyes22 wrote:
As far as being in the 99, there are better draw engines.

Like Necropotence? Ad Nauseam?

Not being combative; I legit want to know what's better. It's also worth noting that Vilis 'combos' with most of the black draw out there, since life-for-cards is almost always how it manifests in black.


Agreed, he is very strong. I can see lots of people taking him up on his promise and hurting themselves so good. You listed the two off the top of my head that are better or at least as good. After that it kind of depends on what your trying to do, do you just need lots of cards? Azami, Lady of Scrolls or Arcanis, the Omnipotent might be good fits. Do you want a specific group of cards? Doomsday or Survival of the Fittest might be better for you.

Author:  Uktabi_Kong [ 2019-Sep-11 4:15 am ]
Post subject:  Re: Vilis, Broker Of Blood

I do think when talking about Vilis, we need to look at him in context of other banned cards. Not just Griselbrand, but cards on the list like it. It's not Power or insanely pricey like Library, it's not an inherent funsuck like Limited Resources, it's not a durdle machine like Paradox Engine or Prophet of Kruphix, and it doesn't interact poorly with the rules of the format like Karakas or Trade Secrets.

The thing it could in theory be guilty of is simply so powerful that it ruins games whenever it shows up. And even then, there's still two categories of cards that fit that description: ones that are just WAY too efficient (Tinker, Tolarian Academy, Channel) and ones where really the effect is the only thing in question. Vilis would clearly fall into the second camp, which would make it comparable to the following other cards: Griselbrand, Primeval Titan, Sylvan Primordial, and Yawgmoth's Bargain.

Looking at the four of them and then back at Vilis, I see one enormous difference, and that is the ratio of floor-to-ceiling. All of the above cards and Vilis have an enormously high ceiling, but all of the above cards but Vilis have an enormously high floor. The realistic worst case scenario for the four banned cards is still really, really good, while the realistic worst case scenario for Vilis is no different from any other big powerful haymaker.

It's a common adage that "dies to removal" isn't a good argument because everything does, but one thing that the above four cards all have in common is that they really don't. In the case of the Titan and Primordial the damage will have already been done (and heck, the Primordial controller usually wants you to kill it), and in the case of the big black draw machines they'll just do their thing in response to the removal spell and replace themselves tenfold. Vilis can kind of do that latter, but it's significantly more resource-intensive and therefore actually requires some build-around and/or smart play to pull off. His dependence on black mana also makes it so that the 2-3+ color combos that would abuse the hell out of him aren't as good at abusing him in the first place. Compare this to the other four cards; you literally can just put them in any deck and they'll do their magic perfectly, without any real planning or synergy.

I also see Vilis' synergy with Sign in Blood and fetchlands and whatnot as a point in his favor rather than against, as it means that he again rewards deckbuilding choices that play to his strength instead of just relying on the sheer power of his effect. I think if there's a card we actually should be comparing him to, it's Razaketh, the Foulblooded. They both are incredibly similar; 8 mana creatures with an insanely powerful effect that requires a tad of setup in order to really break things open. And both are a far cry from their banned cousins, cards that just need to hit the board to send everything kablooie.

Author:  Gath Immortal [ 2019-Sep-15 5:39 am ]
Post subject:  Re: Vilis, Broker Of Blood

The last time I saw razaketh hit the table, the game ended immediately. Same with the time before that and the time before that, as far as I'm concerned you are right that they are both the same class of card, but from where I sit that just means they should both die in a fire.

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