Limited Card Pool Update: Beetleback Chief & Elderwood Scion
Another change to my limited card pool, this time one I already announced: With the official Planechase 2012 spoiler up, I’m adding Beetleback Chief and replacing Loxodon Hierarch with Elderwood Scion. The Chief is just a great, simple card I needed (Siege-Gang Commander is way too powerful). As for the other change: Both the Hierarch and the Scion have “ketchup text”, which I hate – additional abilities spoiling an elegant card to increase its allure towards a jaded target audience. While ketchup text often pushes a card over the top, in these cases it isn’t too relevant, at least not in limited. This decision is about the cards’ main abilities – a 4/4 for 4 mana giving you 4 life when it enters the battlefield versus a 4/4 with lifelink and trample for 5 mana. I prefer the second, since the Hierarch punishes aggressive decks a little too harshly, coming down early with a big body and undoing damage already done even if immediateyl dealt with. The Scion is admittedly more powerful overall, but it gives an aggressive deck more time to close the game before it appears, and it trades with removal without already having had an impact. Being more of a powerful finisher, it also fits a rare slot better than the Hierarch, which is essentially just a (much) more efficient Lone Missionary, but of course too powerful to be not rare.