Today, folks, I’m engaging in the most time-honored writer’s tradition, one that for me goes back to the O.G.DesertIsland Decklist and ventures forward to the most recent Legends version. 
That’s right – we’re talking about Shameless Topic Recycling™. 
Before we get started (and to prove to you that I’m not just taking the easy way out), let me get you all up to speed on what’s going to be happening in the next few weeks here at GDC-
New Blood!  Starting next week, I’ll be starting to introduce you to some fresh faces around here.  I’ve got more new writers than I can…er…well, count on one hand after a freak table saw accident involving my thumb.  Okay, then!  Seriously, though…I have some great voices coming on board, some fresh faces, and some you may recognize already.  Stay tuned to see what’s in store…it’s going to be exciting.  
New Looks!  I’ll be sitting down with a team tonight that I’ll be working with to redesign things around here.  We’re meeting at a brewery, so if all goes well, we might actually remember to, you know, address the website, and ideally, my wife won’t need to angrily come downtown to pick me up afterward.  
Expect a pretty drastic change in appearance to start; we’ll be trying some new and interesting things from there.  I’m really excited about this.
-New…Other stuff!  Er…yeah.  Cryptic, I know.  Fingers are crossed on a few exciting opportunities that I can’t yet reveal details on.  Suffice to say there are some cool things that hopefully pan out in the near future.  It’s all good!
ONCE AGAIN, IT’S ON
We’re going back for another run at “Add One, Remove One, Approve One” today.  For those of you who were around for the first time, we took a look at the current EDH Banned List, and offered up some changes that we thought were standing improvements.  This time, we’re focusing strictly on Generals. 
Here are the rules:

-ADD ONE.  For this slot, we’re going to take a General that is currently legal and add it to the “Banned As A General” list.

-REMOVE ONE.  Here, we take a look at the short-yet-potent list of legendary creatures that are banned (both as Generals and…er…in general.)  We’ll pick one set it free!

-APPROVE ONE.  This is the meat of the exercise; with this slot, we’ll find a non-legendary creature that we believe should be eligible to be a General.
Everyone with me?  Good!



I feel betrayed.  Green mana acceleration, once the hallmark of the format and a raison d’être of my love affair with the color in general, is rapidly becoming a blight on the games I play.  All due respect, if I have to endure one more game featuring an unchecked Riku player ramping to thirty mana and then copying every last goddamn thing he plays, I’m going to start swinging.  Seriously.  
Omnath is the most intense Green Mana Battery ever.  He gets huge quickly, and just seems to end in an inevitable place every time – Genesis Wave for eleventy-billion.  Rofellos is banned for the obscene mana he can reliably produce at a pretty quick clip, and Omnath is not much farther behind.  He’s easy to protect (read: Darksteel Plate, Swiftfoot Boots, Asceticism, etc), easy to make instant-speed redundant (Aluren, Vedalken Orrery, WindingCanyons), and did I mention Genesis Wave for eleventy-billion? 
To me he’s the current low-hanging fruit of the format, and if something has to go, it’s him.  (Her?  It?  What the hell is Omnath, anyway?  It looks like a giant cucumber with arms and legs…and arms again.)


Heh.  Kidding.


I’m not denying that Koko is strong.  Life loss is harder to deal with than damage, and since the loss affects all enemies simultaneously, this is an arguably-broken effect.
Still, we’re back in the realm of needing to hit a graveyard to be effective.  This means foregoing a trip to the General Zone, thus making Kokusho that much harder to abuse.  I know black is good on reanimation effects, but in this day and age, everyone should be packing reasonable grave hate to make it that much harder to abuse.  More importantly, Koko as a general means you get no Rite of Replication, which is really how this thing is busted wide open.
A six-cost creature sure gets expensive after a few times around the block under the General tax, and let’s also face the fact that you’re going to be the biggest target at the table* for sitting down with Kokusho as your general.  I think this is a safe release.
APPROVE ONE – The Nephilim (Yeah…I cheated here.  My blog, my rules.)

I’ve come back around on these guys.  The argument has been made from the top down (hit up YouTube for the Commander Panel from GenCon 2011) that the real issue with Nephilim is that you’re not creating an identity form the included colors as much as you are from the excluded one.  There’s also the fact that most of the Nephilim are pretty underwhelming (I’m looking at you, Ink-Treader!) on a cost-versus-effect basis. 
The fact remains that there isn’t a louder clarion call amongst the EDH player base than to make these guys legit generals.  (Well, to be fair, the call is for four-color generals, not the Nephilim specifically.  These things are just de facto poster boys.  I personally would rather see a fresh design with native legendary status and a little more horsepower under the hood.  But I digress…) 
I think there’s some legit design space to be explored in four-color generals.  The danger lies in the fact that the Nephilim become mostly-unused ‘puppet generals’ and the decks end up primarily as ‘goodstuff’ abominations, but I don’t think there is much collateral damage in opening the door to this, and the design space is fairly fertile from a deckbuilding perspective.  I’d like to see what we as players would be able to do here.
Have a great weekend, everyone-

àDJ 

(*- Except for that guy next to you playing Griselbrand.  How’s it feel to be playing a banned General that isn’t even as powerful as a currently-unbanned one?  Sucker!)