Friday, November 2, 2012

Shadow Era Spoilers: Artful Squire

No need for introductions. New card. Let's get to it.

Spoiler #5: Artful Squire
Spoiled by Kyle on 11/2/2011

I like this card. A lot.

After the last spoilers, I wasn't so sure if I'd be saying that. But I do.

First of all, this serves to cover the bases of human hunters and mages who were previously lacking a counterpart to Shriek of Vengeance. Now, these classes have a way to deal with What Big Teeth, Tome of Knowledge, etc. Even Warriors can now destroy Ill-Gotten Gains and the like, whereas before their destruction was limited to equipment.

However, this is more than just a card you use because there's no better option. It's great for quickmatch games and non-sideboard events, since he has a function even when item destruction isn't needed. In topdeck mode, he can fill a board if you're at a standstill or get rid of the enemy draw engine to keep you both in the same boat.

And that's not all. The squire interacts well with an assortment of other cards, too. Have him in play as an ally, then decide you need the destruction? Retreat! Want the best of both worlds? Just get an Earthen Protector on board. Attack with your EP, kill their ally, then play the Squire, kill their weapon, and you have a 4/7 to boot. If you have Wrath of the Forest, this card becomes a cantrip. It's put back in the deck with Resurrection. Finally, it also accelerates your Honored Dead.

Edit: Since I started writing, the ruling's been released that being 'placed' in the graveyard doesn't count as the squire dying, so Earthen Protector is unable to trigger. It's more a cute interaction than a game-breaking revelation, so I won't mark down the original score. It's possible that this will get changed back to 'dying' before the set is released. Credit to tman507 for catching the error.

To top it all off, an Armored Sandworm without the armor may be unimpressive, but he's pretty resilient for a 4cc ally. A body that size may be unimpressive by itself, but there are ways to make small bodies bigger. He can even be played as an alternate win condition in solo decks.

The only real downside that I can see is that both sides, by themselves, seem rather underwhelming. It's the options themselves that are powerful moreso than the end result. He's not a large threat, he's not effecient item destruction, and let's be honest, he won't win you games. Nevertheless, he's an excellent piece of utility with more cool trix than a silly rabbit. I'm a fan.

Artful Squire Rating: 8/10. Can't win games by himself, but he'll definitely help you get there. This card is simply an amazing tool for deck builders. I asked Wulven for a decent, utility common and they certainly delivered. Kudos to them.

1 comment:

  1. nice read buddy! I really like the idea about retreating so you can recast. thats a golden nugget. Unruler will be sad. he hates retreat