Dark Ascension brings a good number of multicolored cards to the table that are worth including in a cube. In fact, nearly every one of the multicolor mythic cards in Dark Ascension are getting a run at my cube. The only one I am not trying out yet is Falkenrath Aristocrat. This is a great card, but Olivia Voldaren sits at the same converted mana cost. I suppose I could eliminate Shambling Remains to make room for it. This might be a good idea, but I wasn’t entirely sure I should include the Aristocrat yet.
That said, here are the changes to the multicolor and colorless sections of my cube:
White / Blue
I feel that Windreaver is ready for a benching. Drogskol Reaver is a much better creature. The Reaver’s abilities really are a bit ridiculous, the best being that if you connect with him you draw two cards on top of the life gain. He may cost seven mana up front, but you don’t have to keep sinking mana into him, as you do with Windreaver, to get value out of him. I imagine that Windreaver ultimately costs more total mana than Drogskol Reaver, on average.
White / Black
Lingering Souls needs no argument for inclusion in the cube, in my opinion. We’ve seen it in the top Standard decks. We’ve seen it win Legacy Grand Prix in the hands of Tom Martell, and it’s a house in limited. In trying to find room for it, Tidehollow Sculler felt like one of the weaker white/black cards. I certainly don’t want to remove Vindicate, Angel of Despair, or Mortify. I prefer Stillmoon Cavalier over the Sculler, though others might not feel the same way.
Identity Crisis can be a pretty back-breaking card, but it’s never seen much play in my cube, likley due to it’s restrictive mana cost. So, I felt this was the right card to cut for Sorin.
Blue / Black
Undermine and Absorb were in my cube from day one, and after rotating out Absorb I’m also giving Undermine some time on the bench. Both are solid, but haven’t seemed to be seeing much play in my list. Perhaps it’s due to the fact that my cube has largely only been used for Winston drafting of late, but these cards often find themselves in the sideboard. I really need to find a local playgroup where I live that will cube. That would give me a lot more feedback on my list. This makes room for Havengul Lich, which seems like it can be pretty absurd. I love the ability and I’m looking forward to being able to craft a deck around him.
Red / Green
I knew Huntmaster was coming in from the get go, and Brian Kibler winning on the back of this card only reinforced the feelings I had about it. I watched quite a few streams of MTGO cube on the weekend of its debut as well, and I saw Huntmaster being played often and performing well. I pulled Apocalypse Hydra to make room. The Hydra is a great finisher in ramp decks, but not on par with Huntmaster in overall power. I chose to keep Sarkhan Vol as it is a lot of fun to play with.
Helvault isn’t the most mana efficient removal, but it is removal that any color can use. It also adds some combo potential that I think might be worth exploring. Since it’s ability was a bit analogous to Effigy’s, I pulled Effigy. The main thing Effigy had going for it was that it was a decent Trinket Mage target, but I’m more interested in seeing whether Helvault pans out. There are a number of better targets in my cube for Trinket Mage.
This concludes the changes I made to my cube list for Dark Ascension. Likely some will rotate out after a while. A select few will last for the long haul, and one or two might sneak their way in for a trial later. Dark Ascension has been pretty kind to cubes for being a small set, overall. Now I can set my sights on Avacyn Restored. Spoilers are out and those who maintain cube lists are already planning and scheming. I might as well join in.