Welcome back to our next chapter of the Zendikar Rising Limited Set Review! In today's article I will be making my predictions for how strong each of the set's Blue cards will be in Limited. As always, my 5-point scale is as follows:
1.0 = Unplayable
2.0 = Not often desired
3.0 = Decent filler to round out most decks
4.0 = High priority, finishers
5.0 = Top Pick, must have
And as always, all opinions and card ratings in this article are my own. Let's jump in!
A creature/planeswalker tax in the early game, but a hard counter late game or in a Mill deck. I think this card will most often be a late pick since it doesn't contribute to Mill's game plan, but I still expect to see a creature get countered every now and then.
Like similar cards before it, I expect this card to be a great inexpensive and effective removal spell for blue. Adding this card in decks that care about Kicker will make it that much better.
A 3/3 and minimum scry 1 for 4 mana is fine. I expect this card to be filler and not much more common than a one-of when it is played.
Charix, the Raging Isle
Better pack a lot of Islands for this Leviathan. Sure to be a great candidate to pick up Equipment or other buff, but the more lands in play means fewer ability activations to make this monster a heavy hitter. Pair with protection spells to really tax your opponent's mana.
Rating: 3.5, crab butts are the new crab legs
I've never been a fan of similar blue cards, but the card draw workaround seems great. I won't prioritize this card, but I could definitely see playing a copy or two in decks where the card draw is almost guaranteed.
Cleric of Chill Depths
A decent effect, but it probably only buys one turn when it matters. Not a finisher or finisher-enabler, so I am not going out of my way to play it.
Being that creatures are what usually win games in draft, this is not the type of counter I want to focus on in blue. Probably a great sideboard card if the opponent has a flashy game winning sorcery, but otherwise disappointing.
The bad hits keep coming. While it draws a card on entering the battlefield, the main attraction effect on the card is irrelevant when playing against anything other than green decks that ramp.
Rating: 1.0, bad can trip
Blue has a vague Kicker theme, although Kicker is present across the board, and this is a great bonus for playing those cards. I think this card would be worth playing with as few as 2-3 kicker cards in the deck.
3 mana for a 2/2 that bounces a creature to hand on entering the battlefield is a thing of the past. Decent stats for an early game attacker with late game versatility is fine, and I don't think this is a card worth holding in hand to capitalize on kicker unless there are better spells to play sooner.
Helps find the cards you want and that's it. Filler or enabler for spells matter decks.
A 3/2 flyer for 4 mana is pretty good, and replacing itself when it dies if you have another wizard is great. I wouldn't stack a deck with these, but I might play 2 or 3 copies in a deck with enough wizards.
Drawing two cards for 3 mana is pretty normal for recent standard sets, and the optional Kicker is nice but probably not likely for just one extra card. I expect to rarely see the kicker paid without some additional bonus.
Now this is a lot of value for 3 mana. It does a lot for just one card that also replaces itself and I expect this to be a popular common in draft.
Inscription of Insight
I don't feel like this card does enough as a 4 mana rare. Whether it is cast with Kicker or not it seems overpriced for what it does.
Into the Roil
Bounce a creature and draw was good the first time this card was printed, and I imagine it is still good now.
Jace, Mirror Mage
Seems very similar to the last 3 mana Jace we had in a Standard set, only this one does not have a built-in game winning feature. Casting with Kicker to have two Jaces alternating scry and draw abilities each turn seems like the best use of this card.
3/3's with Flash and Flying for 5 put in work. If I get forced into drafting blue without a decent win-con, I will be looking for these.
If milling away the opponent's best threat doesn't work out, why not just take it for yourself? It may be blue heavy, but the effect is well worth it.