Card of the Week – Chlorophyllia
Welcome back for another edition of card of the week and what a good one we have for you guys this week. The dreaded ramp spell, Chlorophyllia. There’s been some hype on this card lately and for pretty good reason. In pretty much every CCG ever, ramp spells have been the centerpiece to decks that try to do unfair things. Let’s take for example Magic: The Gathering since that’s the most widely recognized game. In Magic cards like Farseek, Rampant Growth, Explosive Vegetation, and Ranger’s Path have been the centerpiece to decks that put a ton of lands into play and then win by playing a really big creature several turns early like Primeval Titan, or a game ending Spell like Tooth and Nail. All of those cards, and the specific decks that accompanied them, were very powerful and in many cases defined entire formats.
So. What makes Chlorophyllia or HEX any different than the named cards and MTG? The answer is absolutely nothing. In fact, I’d go as far to say that ramp effects can potentially be even better in HEX due to the champion charge powers among other variables. Creating two Wild resources, and charging your hero twice is essentially two cards in one. However, the key factor we have in determining just how powerful ramp effects are in a game is what we are actually ramping to. So, what are we ramping to? The first thing that I think about when wanting to ramp into something unfair is Eye of Creation but the fun doesn’t stop there. Turn four Jadiim is very powerful considering if your opponent doesn’t kill him on the spot then he’s going to get out of hand very quickly. Turn five Uzume is also pretty enticing especially considering we can build our deck in a manner where we can make use out of a lot of Shin’Hare. Still, my favorite idea is just ramping into a huge Eye of Creation.
Let’s stop for a moment and talk about how we’re going to live through the turns leading up to Chlorophyllia. It’s been mentioned in other places where the effect might not be worth it because we have to “take a turn off” to cast Chlorophyllia. I adamantly disagree with that statement because afterall, we don’t have to cast it on turn three. But let’s assume that we have a decent draw and we can cast it turn 3. What would said draw look like? I picture something like this:
Turn 1: Perhaps nothing. If we have something it’d be akin to Rune Ear Commander or Shin’Hare Militia. I do like the idea of the Militia as just a road block that can potentially do much more. Either way, turn one isn’t where we’re going to set the pace for the game, turn two is.
Turn 2: This is where we really want to play the card that’s going to set us up for future turns. What I’m leading into is Runts of the Littler. This card has been vastly underestimated in most card reviews and forum threads that I’ve read. On the surface, it’s just three 0/1′s but in practice it’s so much more. When I think of this card I think of Lingering Souls from Magic. Lingering Souls was a control decks dream as well as a staple in many other decks in the format (and still is). What it did was enable you to control the tempo of the game and get to later turns so your deck can do what it was built to do. In my opinion, Runts of the Litter into a turn three Chlorophyllia is one of the most powerful things that you can do in the game at the moment as that also enables you to use your champion charge power on the very same turn and the following turn assuming you hit your resource drop to make several 0/1 Battle Hoppers.
This might not seem very significant on paper but it’s a very, very solid way to stay alive and take very minimal damage. Runts of the Litter also plays very nice with Eye of Creation as we essentially get three 0/1′s for free that can be pumped via Evolve or other similar effects. Even if we don’t go the Shin’Hare route, I see absolutely no reason why a full playset of Runts wouldn’t still be in your ramp deck.
Turn 3: We cast our ramp spell
Turns 4-X: We cast our game ending spells. Eye of Creation, Jadiim, Uzume, whatever other monster or spell gets previewed. We also should make note that we don’t really need to just be one shard as Runts only takes one Wild threshold (a mistake in my opinion), and Chlorophyllia only needs two Wild threshold. Certainly we’d be base Wild but playing a second color will be very easy. Traditionally either Red or White were paired with Green in the ramp decks for Magic so naturally we’d look at either Ruby or Diamond for help. Let’s wait to see a full card spoiler before we get into any advance deck building however. Blood is even an option for the Shin’Hare ramp deck which gives us targeted removal to further help us stay alive as well as more Shin’Hare tricks.
Just to touch on the Shin’Hare + Eye of Creation deck (if you can’t tell, I’m excited for this archetype), the key cards would be Runts of the Litter, Chlorophyllia, Eye of Creation, Uzume, Bucktooth Commander, Evolve, and Wild Root Dancer with an honorable mention to Succulent Roostasaur as a win condition post Eye of Creation when you flood the board. Because you can play the cards you flip off of an Eye of Creation in any order, you just play all your Troops first and end your chain with the Evolves and similar effects. Even an Eye of Creation for three is not to be scoffed at.
These are all PvP thoughts and ideas but that doesn’t go without saying that the same ideas are just as potent in PvE. Orson’s Dream seems pretty powerful with a lot of resources in play so that’s something to keep in mind. Can also set up for a really large, game ending Wild Soul. Spirit Dance is even a consideration in both PvE and PvP if you can quickly ramp into it as it enables you to do some pretty unfair things. Spirit Dance is a card is akin to Heartless Summoning and that card was also a format staple in magic albeit the cost was considerably less.
That’s about all we have this week. I’m super excited for Chlorophyllia and these are just a few examples of what you can do with the card. I’d love to hear about what you guys plan to do with the card/ What ideas do you have for such a powerful ramp effect? Until next week, thanks for reading!