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CardShark Content - Wenhao Xia (3/13/2004)

This is the continuation of the first set review. Part two of the black cards in Darksteel. This time, I will be reviewing cards from Hunger of the Nim
Hunger of the Nim
Hunger of the NimSet: Darksteel
Cost:
2
Color:
Black
Type:
Sorcery
Rarity:
C
Number:
46
Artist:
Puddnhead
Text:
Target creature gets +1/+0 until end of turn for each artifact you control.
- Shriveling Rot
Shriveling Rot
Shriveling RotSet: Darksteel
Cost:
4
Color:
Black
Type:
Instant
Rarity:
R
Number:
54
Artist:
Alex Horley-Orlandelli
Text:
Choose one: Until end of turn whenever a creature is dealt damage destroy it; or until end of turn whenever a creature is put into a graveyard from play that creature's controller loses life equal to it's toughness. Entwine 2B (Choose both if you pay the entwine cost)
. Once again, each card will get a constructed rating as well as a limited rating. Ratings range from 1-5, with 1 being the worst and 5 being the best. Keep in mind that these are my opinions only and my opinions may not be the best. You are free to judge the cards on your own. Now let’s get started…

Hunger of the Nim
Hunger of the Nim
Hunger of the NimSet: Darksteel
Cost:
2
Color:
Black
Type:
Sorcery
Rarity:
C
Number:
46
Artist:
Puddnhead
Text:
Target creature gets +1/+0 until end of turn for each artifact you control.

Constructed - 2
Limited - 2

In a constructed tournament, this card really won’t see much play. First, its effect is just not that useful in most of the decks that are currently in constructed. The fact that this card is a sorcery is really a bad thing. Being an instant will allow it to be played after blockers are declared, but being a sorcery will really limit its values. The reason it received a 2 instead of a 1 is that this card could be used in some turbo affinity kind of deck. Being black, this will fit in right with those Disciples of the vaults. Playing an affinity deck, this might not be that bad a card if it’s drawn early when opponents have no blockers yet. Still though, even in affinity, there are better card to be played than this.

In limited, this card is not much better. The fact of the matter is that in limited, you won’t have too much artifact. Sure you’ll maybe have five or six some times, but you’ll also have to draw this card when you do have all those artifact, and since it’s a sorcery, you’ll most likely need an evasive creature to play it on. Even with all those conditions, the creature could easily die to an instant removal such as terror or electrostatic bolt. Most of the time, there will simply be better cards that can be played. If, though, you are playing a deck that’s heavy on artifact and evasion, you might give this a try, but I doubt that it’ll work too well.

Mephitic Ooze
Mephitic Ooze
Mephitic OozeSet: Darksteel
Cost:
5
Color:
Black
Type:
Creature
Sub Type:
Ooze
Rarity:
R
Number:
47
Artist:
Alex Horley-Orlandelli
Power:
0
Toughness:
5
Text:
Mephitic Ooze gets +1/+0 for each artifact you control. When Mephitic Ooze deals damage to a creature destroy that creature. It cant be regenerated.

Constructed - 1
Limited - 4

This card is completely useless in constructed. There isn’t a deck that I can think off that can effectively use this card. First of all, the five casting cost is already too much. Plus that most of the times, this will be a zero powered creature in most decks. Even in affinity, there is better creature to be played. I would much rather have a Nim Shrieker
Nim Shrieker
Nim ShriekerSet: Mirrodin
Cost:
4
Color:
Black
Type:
Creature
Sub Type:
Zombie
Rarity:
C
Number:
73
Artist:
Adam Rex
Power:
0
Toughness:
1
Text:
Flying Nim Shrieker gets +1/+0 for each artifact you control.
than this. The second ability (venom) is really pointless in constructed also.

In limited though, this card gets much better. First of all, you’ll usually have a few artifacts lying around in limited, usually making this a three, maybe four toughness creature. And in limited, a 3/5 or a 4/5 with the venom ability is very good. The five toughness means that it won’t die to just your run of the mill creatures. Your opponents also can’t effectively team block this without losing all creatures blocking. (You can simply choose to distribute one damage to each creature) The single black also means that it’s very much splashable. All in all, you should take this very high. It’s much more useful than an ogre leadfoot can be.

Murderous Spoils
Murderous Spoils
Murderous SpoilsSet: Darksteel
Cost:
6
Color:
Black
Type:
Instant
Rarity:
U
Number:
48
Artist:
Adam Rex
Text:
Destroy target non-black creature. It can't be regenerated. You gain control of all equipment attached to it.

Constructed - 1
Limited - 5

This card is pointless in constructed. For six mana, one would expect a spell that would destroy all creatures artifacts and enchantments (Akroma’s Vengeance
Vengeance
VengeanceSet: Portal Second Age
Cost:
4
Color:
White
Type:
Sorcery
Rarity:
U
Artist:
Keith Parkinson
Text:
Destroy any one tapped creature.
). Not a spell that could only destroy a nonblack creature. There are simply better card to use than this. Try a terror or a dark banishing, it’ll usually work better. The second ability is also all but negligent in constructed as the only deck that actively use a lot of equipment is white weenie, and against white weenie, you don’t want a six casting cost creature destruction. Plus, they’ll just move a lightning greaves on the creature as an instant with Leonin Shikari
Leonin Shikari
Leonin ShikariSet: Darksteel
Cost:
2
Color:
White
Type:
Creature
Sub Type:
Cat Soldier
Rarity:
R
Number:
6
Artist:
Wayne England
Power:
2
Toughness:
2
Text:
You may play equip abilities any time you could play an instant.
anyway.

In limited, this card is the bomb. For one, you won’t have to worry about Leonin Shikari
Leonin Shikari
Leonin ShikariSet: Darksteel
Cost:
2
Color:
White
Type:
Creature
Sub Type:
Cat Soldier
Rarity:
R
Number:
6
Artist:
Wayne England
Power:
2
Toughness:
2
Text:
You may play equip abilities any time you could play an instant.
s (unless your opponent is very lucky indeed). Second, the six mana is nothing much in limited. Being one black also means that it’s very much splashable. This card is probably best compared to Betrayal
Betrayal
BetrayalSet: Visions
Cost:
1
Color:
Blue
Type:
Enchant Creature
Rarity:
C
Artist:
Gary Leach
Text:
Play only on a creature an opponent controls.If enchanted creature becomes tapped, draw a card.
of the Flesh, and I will say that it is better than betrayal of the flesh. The reason being that most opponents will play with equipment, and this will usually get you a Three for one, maybe a Five for one. With betrayal, you’ll either get a one for one, or a four for two, it also required you be strongly in black with it’s entwine cost, while this card doesn’t. All in all, I would take this card very high, perhaps even higher the hammer.

Nim Abomination
Nim Abomination
Nim AbominationSet: Darksteel
Cost:
3
Color:
Black
Type:
Creature
Sub Type:
Zombie
Rarity:
U
Number:
49
Artist:
Jim Murray
Power:
3
Toughness:
4
Text:
At the end of your turn if Nim Abomination is untapped you lose 3 life.

Constructed - 1
Limited - 3

This card is not that good in constructed. The only deck it can possibly be used in is suicide black. Looking at this card, it’s obviously designed to be aggressive, as you’ll lose three life a turn if you don’t attack with it, or tap it somehow. But it’s just not aggressive enough to be considered in suicide black, as suicide black’s standard is 2 for a 3/3 and 4 for a 6/6. In the end, this card probably won’t do anything in constructed.

In limited, this card is good, although not that a great pick. I would much rather have Grimclaw Bat that this. First of all, you will lose three life that first turn, (Unless you have something like Icy Manipulator
Icy Manipulator
Icy ManipulatorSet: Ice Age
Cost:
4
Color:
Colorless
Type:
Artifact
Rarity:
U
Artist:
Amy Weber
Text:
1, T: Tap target artifact, creature, or land.
) and each turn after that; the creature must always attack unless you want to put yourself on a clock. This usually means that the creature will either die to a blocking, or a combined blocking. But this card is not a bad card, a 3/4 is always welcome in limited. Just don’t play with this when there are better things out there.

Pulse of the Dross
Pulse of the Dross
Pulse of the DrossSet: Darksteel
Cost:
3
Color:
Black
Type:
Sorcery
Rarity:
R
Number:
50
Artist:
Paolo Parente
Text:
Target player reveals three cards from his or her hand and you choose one of them. That player discards that card. Then if that player has more cards in hand than you return Pulse of the Dross to its owner's hand.

Constructed - 3.5
Limited - 3

This is a hard card to evaluate. The effect is certainly good is constructed as a discard effect. But the fact that is cost the same as coercion and has the same effect as blackmail is something that has to be looked at. Now the only reason to play this card over either blackmail or coercion is the fact that is might be repeatable. Looking at the constructed environment, we see that the discard is often used against control to stripe either powerful card or counter spells from their hand. In the current environment, without a lot of counter spells, this card can be potentially very powerful especially is you use it to stripe land from your opponents hand and prevent him from playing any spells, therefore maximizing the effectiveness of this card. But ultimately, this card depends a lot on your opponents and is, therefore, not very reliable. The 3.5 rating is for the potential that I see in this card. It could be used as the discard in suicide black instead of blackmail and coercion. But more testing will be required.

Remember what I said about this card depending too much on your opponent? Well, in a limited environment, this card not only depends on your opponents, but also depends too much on the draw as each will be generally different. It certainly has potential, but is way too unpredictable to be that good. With that said, it can still give you insane card advantage and speed given a fast start. At the very least, you won’t lose card advantage using this. In the end, Use this if you see it, but if you see better card such as Murderous Spoils
Murderous Spoils
Murderous SpoilsSet: Darksteel
Cost:
6
Color:
Black
Type:
Instant
Rarity:
U
Number:
48
Artist:
Adam Rex
Text:
Destroy target non-black creature. It can't be regenerated. You gain control of all equipment attached to it.
, don’t use this.

Scavenging Scarab
Scavenging Scarab
Scavenging ScarabSet: Darksteel
Cost:
4
Color:
Black
Type:
Creature
Sub Type:
Insect
Rarity:
C
Number:
51
Artist:
Jeff Easley
Power:
3
Toughness:
3
Text:
Scavenging Scarab can't block.

Constructed - 1
Limited - 3

This card is a bad hill giant, as hill giant are unplayable in constructed. This card will be unplayable.

In constructed, this card is better. You will usually always play with hill giant if you have it. As with this worse hill giant, you’ll still want to play with it. It’s not that good, but it’s a solid creature, and therefore receives a rating of midrange 3.

Screams From the Within
Constructed - 2
Limited - 3

This is a bad card. For constructed, there is simply better creature removal than this. Plus, giving something -1/-1 will rarely impact a game. In the current constructed environment, this can only be sideboard card against goblins or elves. It’s virtually useless against anything else. Against either goblin or elves though, it’s not a bad card, it’ll usually get rid of most of their creatures with one shot. Though, goblin most of the times can sacrifice their creature, making this rather pointless. It’s only really useful against elves, which isn’t played that much anyway.

In limited, this card is not much better. It will get rid of those myrs but won’t do anything else. With that in mind, this is not a bad card. It will grab usually grab you some card advantage and kill off multiple creatures. But if there’s anything better, take it instead.

Scrounge
Scrounge
ScroungeSet: Darksteel
Cost:
3
Color:
Black
Type:
Sorcery
Rarity:
U
Number:
53
Artist:
Pete Venters
Text:
Target opponent chooses an artifact card in his or her graveyard. Put that card into play under your control.

Constructed - 1
Limited - 1

This is card is one of the most useless card ever. First of all, in constructed, there’s absolutely no way to use this. This is a card that purely depends on your opponent’s deck, and in constructed, you don’t want to leave your game to your opponent’s deck.

In limited, this card is just as bad. You could get anything, and it’s completely unpredictable. Don’t ever take this card, don’t ever use this card. Half of the time, it’ll be useless, the other half, you’ll get a seat of the synod or a man myr.

Shriveling Rot
Shriveling Rot
Shriveling RotSet: Darksteel
Cost:
4
Color:
Black
Type:
Instant
Rarity:
R
Number:
54
Artist:
Alex Horley-Orlandelli
Text:
Choose one: Until end of turn whenever a creature is dealt damage destroy it; or until end of turn whenever a creature is put into a graveyard from play that creature's controller loses life equal to it's toughness. Entwine 2B (Choose both if you pay the entwine cost)

Constructed - 2
Limited -2

Not a very good card in constructed as there really isn’t a way to use it. Being an instant, you could use this against a wrath effect, but you’ll usually lose more life than your opponent. The first effect of destroying creatures is pretty useless as there is absolutely no good way to deal damage to every creature. It received a 2 purely based on its effect, it could be a powerful effect if used correctly. But you’ll need to combine this card with either a wrath effect, or a damage dealing effect; otherwise, it won’t do anything.

In limited, it’s still as unpredictable, but most of the times, it still won’t do anything significant. Unless you have viridian longbow out, this is pretty much useless. It’s best to compare this card to a card in Mirrodin, Second Sunrise
Second Sunrise
Second SunriseSet: Mirrodin
Cost:
3
Color:
White
Type:
Instant
Rarity:
R
Number:
20
Artist:
Greg Staples
Text:
Each player returns to play all artifact, creature, enchantment, and land cards that were put into his or her graveyard from play this turn.
. Second Sunrise
Second Sunrise
Second SunriseSet: Mirrodin
Cost:
3
Color:
White
Type:
Instant
Rarity:
R
Number:
20
Artist:
Greg Staples
Text:
Each player returns to play all artifact, creature, enchantment, and land cards that were put into his or her graveyard from play this turn.
is a very good card, but also very reactive, only useful when your opponent destroys a lot of your stuff. The same thing is true for Shriveling Rot
Shriveling Rot
Shriveling RotSet: Darksteel
Cost:
4
Color:
Black
Type:
Instant
Rarity:
R
Number:
54
Artist:
Alex Horley-Orlandelli
Text:
Choose one: Until end of turn whenever a creature is dealt damage destroy it; or until end of turn whenever a creature is put into a graveyard from play that creature's controller loses life equal to it's toughness. Entwine 2B (Choose both if you pay the entwine cost)
, it’s very reactive, and won’t do anything on its own. It’s best to take some other card than this.

That’s all for the black cards in Darksteel, I hope this guide helped you out somewhat. Keep on improving everyone!


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