Rotation is nearly upon us, and the spoilers are coming in hot and heavy. Full-art basics. New, fetchable dual lands. Full-art fetches and Shocks. Crazy, mythic Eldrazi. This set is going to have it all, and for the first time in my life, I plan on buying a case of the new goodies.
It’s true that we’ve seen a lot of things out of Battle for Zendikar. But there is one thing I haven’t seen in droves yet: Standard-playable cards.
Sure, Gideon is incredibly strong and will be played, and the lands of course will be good. But getting to 10 mana for Ulamog with what we have available doesn’t seem great, and while casting See the Unwritten into huge guys will almost certainly be a deck, I’m not seeing a ton of good ramp options to go along with Shaman of Forgotten Ways and Rattleclaw Mystic. Of course, those are two good options to start, so it won’t take much more to make it viable, but it’s worth mentioning that we’re not there yet.
Now, I know most of the set hasn’t been spoiled, so it’s a little early to start saying it’s not going to drastically shake up the format, because with so many cards leaving ,there’s no doubt that it will happen.
Still, given that Battle for Zendikar has all the makings of a set that will quickly become the best-selling of all time, I feel most comfortable looking at the current Standard format as a sign of things to come, rather than looking forward to Zendikar to being the driver in that equation.
With that in mind, looking ahead to next season begins with looking back. In this case, to the World Championship, where the world’s 24 best players met and battled it out (congratulations to Seth Manfield for winning, by the way). The World Championship was fun to watch, and I believe it’s a good place to start when we evaluate the decks that will survive rotation.