John-Michael Gariepy

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The Top Ten Most Desirable Magic: the Gathering Cards, According to Gatherer, Part One

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Magic: the Gathering is a collectible card game, where players spellsling against opponents by crafting a customized deck out of 12,758 possible cards.  This article is about ten cards that will steal victory on the verge of  disaster.  These ten cards are deck hacks.  Even in the slowest theme deck, they will super-turbo charge your way to victory.

“Oh!”  many readers are saying to themselves right now, “I’m not sure how you’ll paint your list, but I already know which card will take number one.  It’s Black Lotus, right?”

This card sits at the top of most top ten lists, and for good reasons.  It’s the most expensive Magic card ever printed, not including misprints and specialty printings, clocking in at $4,999.99 on Starcitygames.com.  It’s demands that figure for a reason, too.  Black Lotus not only accelerates you faster than any singular Magic card, but it does it as a 0-cost artifact, allowing you to play crazy insane with cards like Auriok Salvagers.

I could spend an article series delving into why Black Lotus is so over-the-top broken, and why Richard Garfield, the creator of Magic, thought this was okay.  But I’m not going to.  Because it didn’t make the top ten.  It isn’t even in the top fifty.

That’s because, like in my previous article The Top Ten Most Reviled Magic: the Gathering Cards According to Gatherer, we’re using Gatherer, Magic: the Gathering’s online card database, to rank these cards.  Gatherer has a lot of features.  One of them is the ability rank the card you’re looking at using a .5 to 5 star rating system, and according to the Magic community’s votes, Black Lotus isn’t worthy enough.

Why?  Well, because Gatherer is a melting pot of ideas of what makes Magic a great game.  It’s not enough for the card to be merely spectacular.  For a card to make it onto the top ten list it has to be so much fun to play, that few people will get mad when you do it, because, damn, they want to do that too.  Gatherer doesn’t tell us what cards are the most powerful, (Though, don’t get me wrong, every one of these cards are utter game breakers), it tells us which cards people love playing and wish they had.  It tells us which ten cards, out of all the cards in Magic, are the most desirable. Read more…

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