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Stop Playing These Turkeys to Win Brother’s War Drafts!

Just stop playing these cards if you want success in MTG’s latest draft format.

Last week I covered some of the most underrated cards in The Brothers’ War draft. This week, I want to cover the other end of things and talk about some of the most overrated cards in the format!

I’m mostly going to be speaking from experience when talking about how well I’ve found a card to perform but will also be referencing 17lands.com data to provide a bit of context.

Check out this page if you’d like to follow along with some of the stats.

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Good early, good late? More accurately, not good enough early or late. Across the board, the prototype creatures have been huge underperformers.

The issue with these cards is twofold. The first issue is when you cast them for their prototype cost, they tend to be understatted compared to other cards in the set. A deck full of prototype creatures often falls behind quickly because while you’re playing three mana 1/3 fliers and four mana 3/3s, your opponents with non-prototype creatures will cast cards that easily out-stat you.

Ok so the cheap half of these cards are underwhelming, but what about building a powerstone ramp deck where you get to cast your giant eight and nine mana monsters?

The problem with that is that the removal in this format is some of the most efficient we’ve seen in a while, and is particularly good at dealing with giant dummies.  Way too often, you tap out one for of your war machines and your opponent just salivates staring at the Disenchant in their hand.

Now, there are some prototype creatures that are still good enough to draft highly. It’s not that the mechanic is inherently flawed, it’s that most of the rates you’re paying aren’t good enough on either end. A good rule of thumb for evaluating which prototype cards are good and which ones you want to stay away from is to draft the ones that have enter the battlefield effects and stay away from the ones that don’t. Combat Thresher, Simian Prototype, and Boulderbranch Golem are examples of cards I do still like, whereas something like Rust Goliath is an example of a card I’d stay away from.

Battery Bearer

Closely correlated with the prototype creatures, we have Battery Bearer. According to 17lands.com, players are currently drafting this card around third pick on average and presumably trying to build prototype decks around it. The card is quite powerful, but it goes in one of the worst performing decks in the format. I’d personally stay away from this archetype all together, but if you want to try to make it work I’d suggest seeing if this card wheels instead of taking it early.

Disenchant

Doom Blade this is not! Especially as the weeks go on and players (presumably) start playing fewer and fewer prototype creatures, Disenchant doesn’t have quite as many targets as I’d like for me to call it a premium common. Just like Battery Bearer, players are consistently taking Disenchant as one of their first few picks of the draft.  I still like and play the card, remember this is an article about overrated cards not necessarily bad ones, but it’s a card I want one of, not three.

Clay Revenant

The black and red sacrifice decks are some of the best in the format, but Clay Revenant is one you can leave on the bench when drafting them. Between powerstones, creature tokens, and unearth creatures, this format isn’t short on sacrifice fodder. You don’t need to devote a slot in your deck to a low impact card to enable synergies, just put the good cards in your deck instead! If Clay Revenant came in untapped or maybe cost a mana less to buy back, I might be into it. Too often though, I see opponents spending way too much time setting up fiddly synergies with this card when they could just be attacking with more powerful cards.

Swiftfoot Boots

Looking at where players are drafting Swiftfoot Boots on average and comparing that to its winrate, this might be the actual most overrated card in the set. This card goes around fifth pick on average and has the proud distinction of being in the bottom 20 cards in the set winrate wise.

The problem with this card is simply that it’s effect just isn’t impactful enough. Giving hexproof to something sounds powerful, but making your best creature impervious to removal isn’t what most games of limited are about. If your opponent are sitting on all removal spells this card can be effective, but most of the time you’ll play the boots, pay some mana, and your opponent can still interact favorably in combat.

I will say, if you happen to draft Platinum Angel, you absolutely have my permission to put Swiftfoot Boots in your deck!

Yotian Dissident

Yotian Dissident is a powerful card, but it requires a very specific deck to be good. The number of artifacts I’d need in my deck to justify playing this card is somewhere in the 12 or 13 range. That’s certainly doable, but it’s not something that happens every draft, even when you count cards that make powerstones. Like many other cards I’ve talked about today, this one isn’t bad, you just shouldn’t’ pick it early.


The cards in this cycle of uncommons are all quite powerful, but they do demand you play a mono-colored deck. Too often I’ve seen opponents play some of these cards in decks that just can’t support them. Even with only five or six lands of a different color in your deck, you dramatically decrease how effective these cards are. Making sure you have enough lands and spells in Magic is tough enough, drawing three mountains in your Blanchwood Armor deck isn’t something you want to have to worry about.

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