Zendikar Rising Spotlight: Sea Gate Stormcaller in Legacy

Andifeated

Legacy has long been defined by its powerful instants and sorceries for one mana or less. The best threats in this format often take advantage of decks full of those spells. Zendikar Rising brings us another such interaction, a new creature that has the potential to make it big in Legacy.


sea gate stormcaller sea gate stormcaller

Sea Gate Stormcaller treads in the footsteps of cards like Snapcaster Mage, Dreadhorde Arcanist, Young Pyromancer, and many others. It fits nicely into existing, dominant Legacy archetypes such as Delver and has a lot more going on …

What It Does

On the surface, this is a 2/1 creature for two mana. You can cast it like that and have no other effect — which is pretty miserable, but it is an option. It becomes much better when you cast it and have additional mana to use its trigger. For example, at three mana you could get the body while also copying one of Legacy's popular spells like Brainstorm, Ponder, Swords to Plowshares, Thoughtseize, Pyroblast, Surgical Extraction, Cabal Therapy, or fancy stuff like Unearth.


Legacy's one-mana spells

I have to admit that it's not terribly likely to use its expensive kicker ability, though I could see decks and game states where it comes up, and that makes it a late-game bomb! For example, a control deck will have access to many lands at some point and should be able to pay the kicker cost pretty regularly. Alternatively, if you cast the Stormcaller or the card you want to copy without paying their mana coast — for example, due to Aluren or Dreadhorde Arcanist — you might be able to afford kicker and get the spell doubling for less than the six mana that it's supposed to cost.

Plays Better Than It Looks

When comparing the card to existing creatures that do similar things, the community was quick to call this worse than other options like Dreadhorde Arcanist and Snapcaster Mage. Cards that can be used in many different ways are often underrated at first, and Sea Gate Stormcaller being able to act as your two-drop and put on early pressure while also being your super-late-game mana sink is as relevant as that you can choose to make it another copy of any spell you want it to be. Need two removal spells for your opponent's creatures? One Bolt or Swords will do instead of needing to draw two! You're in a hurry to sculpt the perfect hand for a deciding counter war against a combo deck? Make it a second Brainstorm! The opponent is assembling the perfect hand to combo off through your counterspells with their Defense Grid? Mind Twist their entire grip with a single Cabal Therapy!

Sure, Snapcaster Mage might give your deck the same versatility in essentially doubling a spell of your choice while leaving a body behind. It also plays very well with counterspells like Counterspell, Veil of Summer, Spell Pierce, and so on. But what it doesn't do is cheat on mana. Just compare the two to each other: Using your three lands on the third turn to cast Snapcaster Mage on a one-mana spell will give you a 2/1 and a spell. Casting Stormcaller instead will give you two of the spells and the same body for the same amount of mana! Sticking a threat and then clearing the way of two blockers on the third turn is a powerful tempo play, for instance. Following up your Dreadhorde Arcanist with Stormcaller to cantrip three times for Force of Will, Force of Negation, or Daze also makes it much easier to deploy and protect an early board advantage and plays into the Delver strategy much better than Snapcaster Mage would.


snapcaster mage dreadhorde arcanist

Speaking of Dreadhorde Arcanist, this one helps to break the resource system even more. When you're able to cast Arcanist and untap with it on the third turn, you don't even need a third land drop or spend the third mana to use Sea Gate Stormcaller's ability. If you've cast a spell on the first turn, you'll be able to tap your two lands, cast the Stormcaller, attack with the Arcanist, and use its ability to cast your Lightning Bolt or whatever is already in the graveyard two times for zero mana while putting on more pressure! Those early-game curves involving the new card sound completely broken to me. I expect Delver decks to pick it up and become even better at snowballing away an early advantage with its help.

The Best Way to Use It


cabal therapy unearth

Casting additional removal spells or cantrips sounds very potent already. But I think the best way to abuse the card is some proactive Grixis shell that elevates Unearth and Cabal Therapy to their full potential.

Just imagine casting Cabal Therapy on the first turn to name the most likely card they have or the card you'd die to before deploying your synergy and then following up with Stormcaller on the second turn. You'll be able to pay the flashback cost of Therapy by sacrificing the body left on board and take two (or more) of their cards you already know. If you cast Unearth later and get back Stormcaller, you'll receive it's trigger again for the cheap cost of one mana and can do a lot more crazy stuff that way.


I put together a quick draft and I like how all of those cards work together. Oko, Thief of Crowns pushed Grixis Delver out of the metagame, but since Cabal Therapy and Unearth become a lot stronger with Stormcaller, I can see this version of the archetype being playable again. Village Rites is a card I wanted to try in Legacy since it was printed and I think it fits this deck pretty well. It synergizes nicely with Young Pyromancer and Stormcaller as a pretty potent card draw spell. Many have called it Ancestral Recall when you cast it in response to a removal spell targeting one of your creatures and that's somewhat true. Using it alongside Stormcaller also nets you four cards and with Unearth it gets absurd pretty quickly. I didn't want another copy though. It can get awkward to draw multiples, and sacrificing a creature in a tempo deck with only thirteen creature cards already is a risky proposition and in many game states not even possible or recommended.


village rites young pyromancer

Metagame Health

After Oko has unified Delver versions and we essentially only find the RUG Delver stock list these days, I hope that Sea Gate Stormcaller can have an impact and make the archetype more diverse and fun again. However, I do think it's dangerous to give Delver decks a tool that improves their early game and makes them run away with games even more while also reducing their problem to close games where the opponent survives the initial onslaught.

Delver has been one of my favorite strategies to have around in Legacy for years. But Wizards are doing their best to turn what was once a strict tempo deck into a monster with a decent late-game as well, which makes it hard to justify playing any other fair deck as long as that's true. I think the Legacy community has long identified Delver's rise from an early-game deck that loses most top-deck wars to the preeminent midrange deck in the format. This is becoming a big threat to the diversity of the format as a whole.

What are your thoughts on Sea Gate Stormcaller? Do you think I'm right and it will be played a lot in Legacy? Or do you think it'll turn out to be another flop that can't stand against the fierce competition of existing creatures that create card advantage? Tell us about your opinion in the comments!


Opinions expressed in this article are those of the author and not necessarily Cardmarket.



50 Comments

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Andifeated
Bajuwarenzorn(10.10.2020 12:49)

Hi AttilaMolnar,

Thank you for your comment!
Since I‘m a huge fan of the old Grixis control deck, I have thought about this as well.

While copying Hymn to Tourach sounds very powerful, getting blown-out by Veil of Summer is a real danger and I think Snapcaster Mage is simply better in control decks as it combos nicely with Counterspells and K-Command while getting better the longer the game goes.

Also, not playing green is no option for control decks at the moment as it makes no sense to not include cards like Uro, Oko and Decay, I think.

I‘m interested in making the Grixis Delver Deck „bigger“ and adding more Lategame with K-Command and Hymn, though.

Do you, by any chance, have a first raw decklist for your idea?

Best Regards,
Andreas

AttilaMolnar(10.10.2020 14:04)

Bajuwarenzorn
Hey, sure thing i was also a big fan of “classic” grixis control.
I just started to think about the deck but i have a preliminary list that needs to be edited and tested. I would really appreciate any inputs on your ideas to move forward.
2 Snapcaster mage
2 Baleful strix
3 Seagate stormcaller
2 Gurmag angler
2 Toughtseize
3 Hymn to tourach
3 Kolaghans command
2 Jace the mind sculptor
1 Liliana the last hope
4 Ponder
4 Brainstorm
4 Force of will
2 Lightning bolt
1 Fatal push
2 Angraths rampage
2 Edict

3 Volcanic island
3 Underground sea
3 Badlands
1 Island
1 Mountain
1 Swamp
9 Fetch
Sideboard is flexible yet.

The list is pretty oldschool and not tested yet, if anyone has any ideas to improve the list it is jolly welcomed!

Andifeated
Bajuwarenzorn(11.10.2020 17:26)

Hi AttilaMolnar,

Thank you for your comment.
I like that list but I’d really love to capitalize more on Stormcaller. Maybe we can exchange Gurmag Angler for more creatures that synergize well with Cabal Therapy and Unearth?

Also, I think three K-Command and three Hymns really makes you weak against Veil of Summer.

Angrath’s Rampage looks sweet and flexible, did you have good experiences with it?
I wanted to try the card out more but didn’t play it as much as I should’ve to see if it works.

Best Regards,
Andreas

AttilaMolnar(10.10.2020 11:30)

Hey,
Since i saw this creature i cannot think anything else that Hymn to tourach will be insane!!!! Maybe also Grixis control decks get a second chance. What do you think of that?

Andifeated
Bajuwarenzorn(11.10.2020 17:38)

Hi AttilaMolnar,

Thank you for your comment.

I see that Veil of Summer isn’t as prevalent in the metagame anymore. Maybe it’s time for Hymn to Tourach to shine again? If that’s the case the Grixis control shell is just perfect for it and Stormcaller will make it even better.

Can’t wait to mindtwist people at the next local Legacy tournament. :)

Best Regards,
Andreas

BrudnyHarry(03.10.2020 21:05)

Hi

I have been testing this deck today (snap -> pyromancer) and noticed that it misses pressure: after explosive beginnings like 2-3 Cabal Therapy we end up with an empty board and do not build up before opponent can get back to game. I am not sure of how to correct for it ...

Andifeated
Bajuwarenzorn(03.10.2020 21:30)

Hi BrudnyHarry,

Thank you for your comment!
I‘m happy you’ve tried the deck.

I think that problem could be solved by adding more two-mana threads. Add a fourth Arcanist and more Young Pyromancer, maybe even Sorite Dragon.

Durdling around with Snapcaster Mage probably doesn’t cut it in Legacy anymore. That card has seen its best days. :(

Best Regards,
Andreas

BrudnyHarry(04.10.2020 23:36)

Bajuwarenzorn well I think that that snap and village rites are not good in this deck (rites requires sacrificing a creature, and then one is short with the pressure) and replacing those for two True-Name Nemesis is a way out. I will test that option. Also K-command in the sideboard seems sweet :)

Andifeated
Bajuwarenzorn(04.10.2020 23:58)

Hi BrudnyHarry,

Thank you for your comment!

Rites and Snapcaster are indeed very situational cards and exchanging them for more aggressive threats might work wonders.

While TNN sucks against Plague Engineer, it might be exactly what this list needs and works wonders alongside Unearth.

Sprite Dragon might also be an consideration, tell me about your experiences!

P. S.: K-Command is a very sweet card but I doubt it’s competitive. For what matchups would you want that card? I fear there might be more efficient cards that use the sb slots more effectively but K-Command is a card I’ll always love!

Best Regards,
Andreas

BrudnyHarry(05.10.2020 09:41)

Bajuwarenzorn
Naively I would use K command against grindy matchups with decks with a lot of reamoval and against artifact decks perhaps ...

Andifeated
Bajuwarenzorn(05.10.2020 11:50)

Hi BrudnyHarry,

Thank you for your comment. Makes sense and I always loved to play K-Command.
But I think it has become too weak of a card. It's probably better to have something like 1-2 Abrade in the Sideboard for matchups with problematic artifacts and for grindy matchups, Painful Truth's is much better. (wow, so much value with Stormcaller :D)

While this takes up more sb slots, I think it's important today to play the most mana-efficient effects in the sideboard as cards are getting better and better.

I was sad when I realized I had to cut my K-Commands from my Modern Jund deck but they simply feel too weak today. :(

BrudnyHarry(05.10.2020 13:54)

Bajuwarenzorn I was thinkint 2 abrade + a command but perhaps you are right.
Also, I think storming 2 mana spell is much less likely than storming 1 mana spell with a stormcaller ... Often I get wastelanded or I choose to wasteland and I play on three mana only.

Andifeated
Bajuwarenzorn(05.10.2020 15:04)

Hi BrudnyHarry,

Thank you for your comment!

Very good point, maybe we should try to find more one-mana alternatives for sideboard cards as they go well with Stormcaller.

Abrade sounds very good even though it costs two mana and maybe additional Unearth/Reanimate/Rites are the best you can bring in for grindy matchups anyway. Hymn to Tourach and Night’s Whispers also come to mind.

Best Regards,
Andreas

BrudnyHarry(10.10.2020 17:55)

Bajuwarenzorn

Indeed K command a kind of sucks, but my short time experience is that this should be a mid-range deck rather than an aggro deck: strix instead of delvers, TNN instead of pyromancers and 2 Jace and 1 Lili, the last hope will be my aim next time. More basic lands and no wastelands since often I was short for one mana to cast a caller and a spell once I used a wasteland. More basic lands make the deck blood moon resilient. Also Drawn in the Loch might be a good sideboard option.

Andifeated
Bajuwarenzorn(10.10.2020 21:53)

Hi BrudnyHarry,

Thanks you for your comment.
Very good point, maybe we should cut Delver, Wastelands and Daze and build this more like a Control deck or midrange Deck like you said.

Using Wasteland and Daze makes Stormcaller a lot worse as it’s quite the mana intensive card to use optimally.

I‘m in the mood to brew a Grixis Midrange Deck now. :)

Best Regards,
Andreas

BrudnyHarry(11.10.2020 09:34)

Bajuwarenzorn

My list is the following (going to test that next week):
Land (21):
3 Usea
3 Volc
2 Badlands
2 Island
2 Swamp
4 Delta
3 Tarn
2 Mire

Creature(13):
4 Strix
3 Arcanist
3 Caller
3 TNN

Plansewalker(3):
2 Jace
1 Lili, the last hope

Spells(23):
4 Bolt
3 Therapy
2 Push
4 Ponder
4 Brainstorm
4 FoW
2 Unearth

Side(15):
2 Liliana's Triumph
2 Red Elemental Blast
1 Pyroblast
2 Surgical
1 Explosives
2 Abrade
1 Flusterstorm
1 Drawn in the Loch
2 Plague Engineer
1 Null Rod

Andifeated
Bajuwarenzorn(11.10.2020 17:19)

Hi BrudnyHarry,

Thank you for your comment.
I like that approach. Do you think we can fit in a Mystic Sanctuary?

I‘m also wondering if we shouldn’t replace Arcanist with Snapcaster Mage (better with Cabal Therapy) and fit in some Drown in the Loch?

But if we do that, we probably need to cut TNN as well and go for an even more lategame-oriented list.

Your list really makes me want to revive the old Grixis control decks.

Best Regards,
Andreas

BrudnyHarry(11.10.2020 21:46)

Bajuwarenzorn
Well Arcanist is quite food with therapy and with caller - having it active you cast caller turn arcanist sidewaise and cast a spell (say a therapy ) along with it's copy for free. Most of the time it is a 2 mama Plansewalker.

I was thinking about Drawn in the Loch but we need a win con at some point. Explosive start of t1 therapy t2 caller 2x therapy is nicely followed by a t3 TNN or Lili or setting t4 Jace. This is how I see it :)

J

Andifeated
Bajuwarenzorn(12.10.2020 10:54)

Hi BrudnyHarry,

Thank you for your comment!
Yeah, Arcanist is pretty nice when followed up by a Turn three Stormcaller. I think we can’t miss out on that synergy.

This is my current list, what do you think about it?

3 Underground Sea
3 Volcanic Island
2 Badlands
3 Island
2 Swamp
1 Mountain
4 Polluted Delta
3 Scalding Tarn
1 Mystical Sanctuary

4 Force of Will
2 Lightning Bolt
4 Brainstorm
4 Ponder
2 Cabal Therapy
2 Hymn to Tourach
2 Unearth
2 Fatal Push
2 Drown in the Loch
2 Kolaghan’s Command

3 Baleful Strix
3 Sea Gate Stormcaller
3 Snapcaster Mage
3 Dreadhorde Arcanist

Sideboard:

4 Pyroblast
4 Nihil Spellbomb
3 Plague Engineer
2 Flusterstorm
2 Liliana’s Triumph

I think Jace isn’t needed and makes us unnecessarily vulnerable to Pyroblast/REB. Unfortunately, a overrated card from the past. :(

Also, I’d like to fit in some True-Name Nemesis but couldn’t find space for it.

Best Regards,
Andreas

BrudnyHarry(12.10.2020 12:29)

Bajuwarenzorn

I like your list, but I think without Jace, Liliy, TNN we are relying too much on small creatures and graveyard which makes the deck soft to removal like Decay or grave hate. Also a basic Mountain might be a trouble sometimes when combined with Hymn to Tourach ... Well I can test some builds on Saturday only I can share more thoughts then :)

J

Andifeated
Bajuwarenzorn(12.10.2020 13:37)

Hi BrudnyHarry,

Thank you for your comment!

Good argument, this version might be too dependent on its creatures and the graveyard. I love how Liliana, the Last Hope synergizes with the deck’s value creatures, is a decent card against decks like Elves and DnT and wins games on its own in a very unique and hard to interact with way.

Maybe we should make room for one copy but I think it’s more of an sideboard card. Having another maindeck wincondition that uses another angle of attack sounds necessary. While the rest of the deck already sucks against Plague Engineer, TNN doesn’t sound that reliable to me.

Excited to hear about your testing results from Saturday!

Best Regards,
Andreas

BrudnyHarry(17.10.2020 17:30)

Bajuwarenzorn

The Midgrange version works significantly better than the delver one however I am not sure about Jace and Liliy ... On the other hand I am worried that without them there is only one win con and that might be not enough in general ...

Andifeated
Bajuwarenzorn(17.10.2020 20:14)

Hi BrudnyHarry,

Thank you for your comment!
I’m thinking the same right now. There’s no way around testing a list that relies solely on creatures to see if it works.

I can imagine that some games will be lost because creatures don’t cut it or need too much time to seal the deal but on the other hand, planeswalkers make the deck much more vulnerable and clunky.

Best Regards,
Andreas

norris(22.09.2020 00:28)

Hello,

I really like the list and I really want to test stormcaller. However do you think that Thoughtseize or Reanimate can be better choice for the deck? The life gain is not so problematic actually in Legacy.

Thanks for the articles

Andifeated
Bajuwarenzorn(22.09.2020 06:15)

Hi norris,

Thanks you for your comment.
Of course, you can try to fit in those cards. They have great synergy with Sea-Gate Stormcaller and other cards from the deck. I love how you can get back you opponent‘s creatures with Reanimate and additional discard effects like Thoughtseize make Cabal Therapy even better.

I just struggle to find place to put them in.
Maybe they work better in a Death‘s Shadow list featuring Sea-Gate Stormcaller?

Anyway, happy brewing and thank you for your input!

Best Regards,
Andreas

norris(22.09.2020 22:24)

I had some discussion with my Legacy group and everybody is agree with you Cabal Therapy is better than Thoughtseize.
Wait Friday and I'm going to try this deck

Norris

Andifeated
Bajuwarenzorn(22.09.2020 23:23)

Hi norris,

Can’t wait to hear what you find out! Excited to hear how your first tournament goes on Friday! =)

Let us know and best Regards,
Andreas

norris(05.10.2020 12:08)

Hy,

So after few test and discution with my Legacy group, I played this list in 47 player tournament:

4 Delver of Secrets
3 Dreadhorde Arcanist
3 Sea Gate Stormcaller
3 Young Pyromancer

1 Vapor Snag
1 Reanimate
4 Brainstorm
3 Cabal Therapy
1 Fatal Push
4 Force of Will
3 Lightning Bolt
4 Ponder
1 Unearth
2 Village Rites
4 Daze

4 Scalding Tarn
4 Polluted Delta
3 Underground Sea
3 Volcanic Island
4 Wasteland
1 Badlands

SB: 1 Force of Negation
SB: 2 Sulfuric Vortex
SB: 1 Vapor Snag
SB: 1 Red Elemental Blast
SB: 2 Engineered Explosives
SB: 1 Null Rod
SB: 2 Plague Engineer
SB: 2 Pyroblast
SB: 1 Cling to Dust
SB: 2 Surgical Extraction

Finish 17 on 47, 3 Win, 2 Loose and 1 draw (actually it was a miss play, miss letal)
The list is great, it's nice to have the bit down of Delver with value of Arcanist, Sea gate and Pyro. Tha give several strategy.

Win againt Esper Vial, Grixis Painter and Maverik.
Draw against 5c Aggro.
Loose against Death and Taxes and UR Delver. My hand was to bad against wasteland and I feel that the deck need 3 lands to works correctly. If you don't have Arcanist on the play.
However, cabal with Sea gate is really strong (every spell in the deck is actually). Rite Village is good against Sword to plowshares and reanimate/unearth your creature after.
The deck have lot of trick and mini-combo.

This deck feel great to play, it's not linear deck and you don't need delver to win.

GG for the idea, I had good time with it and I will try it again.

Andifeated
Bajuwarenzorn(05.10.2020 13:39)

Hi norris,

Thank you for your tournament report!
I'm happy you were able to attend a big tabletop tournament with this deck and had a decent result and fun!

Your list looks very well built, I'm excited to try something comparable out myself in the near future. :)

Having a second Village Rites must be very good against decks with removal but I'm so afraid to draw both copies when it's not as useful.

Hard to decide how to split the numbers on all those cards. This deck requires a lot of fine-tuning and I can't wait to find out what's the best build.

Best Regards,
Andreas

BrudnyHarry(12.10.2020 14:17)

Bajuwarenzorn

Well, we have a lot of removal for opps Plague Engineer and they cannot set it to wizadrs and Merfolk at the same time. Also, we can reanimate our creatures :)

Andifeated
Bajuwarenzorn(13.10.2020 16:05)

Hi BrudnyHarry,

All very true! Maybe we don’t need to worry about Plague Engineer and play TNN anyway - good arguments!

Best Regards,
Andreas

BrudnyHarry(13.09.2020 20:14)

I love this idea and I would love to be able to play Grixis competitively again. What worries me is that at late game and when one has too many creatures in hand Stormcaller is weak .... That being said the deck might have kick-ass draws and stone cold dead hands ...

Andifeated
Bajuwarenzorn(13.09.2020 20:49)

Hi BrudnyHarry,

Thank you for your comment!

I think you totally nailed it, there will be awkward situations in the late-game, where you don't have any spells left to copy, but draw the Stormcaller. This is probably the biggest disadvantage of the card. But remember, that you can always hold onto it and hope to draw a spell to have a big comeback later.

The card certainly adds a lot of variance to a deck, as it can totally snowball games out of control early, but lacks power in top-deck scenarios later on.

Best Regards,
Andreas

BrudnyHarry(13.09.2020 23:16)

Dear Andreass,

Perhaps this can be overcome by a wise cantrip usage to an extend.
Also, if I may, Flooded Strand is not a good fetch here - instead +2 Bloodstained Mire is better since those can fetch all the dual lands (Strands do not fetch Badlands).
Also Diabolic Edict is weaker than Liliana's Triumph. Otherwise I love that built! :)

Cheerio!
Jakub

Andifeated
Bajuwarenzorn(14.09.2020 00:01)

Hi BrudnyHarry,

Thank you for your comment.
You may be right, I think adjusting your playstyle and holding longer onto your removal and cantrips could solve the problem in many situations.

On the Fetchlands, you’re totally right! I added Badlands to an existing decklist without realizing that Fetchlands need to be reworked as well, good catch!

Diabolic Edict is better than Triumph against decks that have Lifelink creatures. You can attack into their Batterskull and sacrifice the creature they‘ve blocked with it to win narrow damage race situations. I figured this would be more relevant than getting around players with shroud/hexproof or making opponents think you play any Liliana.

Thank you for your input!

This comment was deleted.

DemolitionColorScheme(14.09.2020 14:33)

Bajuwarenzorn

I think Triumph dodging Veil of Summer, Leovold and other cards is a lot more relevant than lifelink scenarios, since Batterskull and other lifegain creatures are barely seeing any play at the moment and Veil of Summer out of Depths will be more problematic.

Andifeated
Bajuwarenzorn(14.09.2020 14:48)

Hi BrudnyHarry,

Leovold and Veil are indeed very good reasons to run Triumph over Edict.
You might be right that this is more relevant than winning against Lifelink creatures or exiling Bridge from Below with Edict.

I guess you convinced me, Triumph is better than Edict! :)

Thank you for your input!

Best Regards,
Andreas

NYoumans(10.09.2020 11:59)

I like your willingness to explore ideas. I'm not quite convinced about this card in Legacy though. Compared to Snapcaster, it is less flexible in the majority of cases. Not having flash and requiring you to cast the spell from your hand seem like real drawbacks in comparison to Snappy - even he is being played less and less in a world dominated by Snoko builds. I'm testing Stormcaller in cube, where it has been great so far, but I have my doubts about its viability in constructed Legacy.

Andifeated
Bajuwarenzorn(10.09.2020 13:15)

Hi, NYoumans!

Thank you for your comment.
Happy to hear you like me pondering ideas. Good idea to put it into your cube, should be a fun addition there!

On your comparison to Snapcaster Mage:
You‘re right! Snapcaster will be better and more flexible in many situations and yet is on the decline in Legacy. But that’s mostly true for the late game.

Stormcaller is much more of an early game creature to me. You wan‘t to curve Arcanist into this or slam it on the third turn in order to get ahead or snowball your advantage while Snapcaster Mage gets better and better as the game progresses and you wait for the best opportunity. Stormcaller might get worse as your hand cards vanish, but note that it’s more an early game threat and that it doesn’t suck against graveyard interaction as well.

I think while both cards look very comparable at first, they both have their own strengths and disadvantages and can serve different roles in different decks.

I‘m excited to find out if one will push out the other or if they can both exist and diversify the Legacy Format!

Best Regards,
Andreas

Homoeructo(09.09.2020 12:54)(Edited: 09.09.2020 13:07)

Hi!

I have several doubts with this letter

Can it be used to copy spells with suspend such as crushing steps, restore balance, or ancestral vision to cast without suspend and have them cast directly?

For example. You have as foretold on the table and you play this creature, then you cast ancestral vision paying 0, would it be copied 2 times ancestral vision?

For example, you play this creature and you have an arcanist on the table and you attack with him having ancestral vision in the graveyard. Would the ancestral be copied 2 times?

On the card it says that it copies the spell of cost 2 or less. Do you copy it directly or do you have to pay the cost of the spell you want to buy? For example you have 3 mana and you cast lightning and then this creature. Is that worth it or do you have to pay 2 times the lightning?

Greetings and thank you

Andifeated
Bajuwarenzorn(09.09.2020 13:46)

Hi, Homoeructo!

Thank you for your comment.

Yes, if you „cast“ the spell and it costs two or less, you’re able to copy it. Even if it comes from something like As Foretold, Arcanist or another card that lets you „cast“ an instant or sorcery.
For example, if you suspend Ancestral Vision and it would reach 0 counters in your upkeep, you can use Aether Vial to bring in Sea Gate Stormcaller and as Suspend let’s you „cast“ Vision without paying its mana cost, Stormcaller will copy it.

If you attack with Arcanist you can cast Ancestral Visin from your graveyard and Stormcaller will copy it.

You don’t need to pay mana for the spell you copy. When you tap two lands to cast the Stormcaller and then tap a land to cast Lightning Bolt, you‘ll be able to create a copy of the Bolt and put it on the stack without paying mana.

Best Regards,
Andreas

SRADracer(09.09.2020 08:54)

It is also a pretty bad topdeck when you're hellbent.
But maybe it is way better than "we" think.

Andifeated
Bajuwarenzorn(09.09.2020 08:59)

Hi, SRADracer!

Thank you for your comment.
You’re right, that’s a significant disadvantage. Snapcaster Mage or Arcanist are excellent topdecks when you’re out of cards but Stormcaller does require you to have another spell in hand.

This card will demand players to be more conservative with their spells, which makes it hard to play. (But I think many Legacy players should hold onto their Cantrips/Removal spells more anyway)

Henyo(09.09.2020 08:45)

I don’t think it will make it! Because you have to cut to much good stuff...

Andifeated
Bajuwarenzorn(09.09.2020 09:02)

Hi, Henyo!

Thank you for your comment.
Good argument, we‘re getting to a point where so many powerful cards exist that it sounds pretty difficult to cut any of them for new cards that haven’t proven themselves yet.

But I think we should always strive to try out new possibilities, even if they look worse at first. We miss some details at the first look in many cases and if it doesn’t work we can still go back to traditional lists.

jolem(08.09.2020 10:05)

My first thought was, that this mage will always do little mindtricks to the opponent. She draws opposing counterspells, since the opponent might not want to face two thoughtseize, two ponder or what have you. I really like her.

Andifeated
Bajuwarenzorn(08.09.2020 14:35)

Hi, jolem!

Thank you for your comment.
Very good point! When Stormcaller is cast, the opponent doesn’t know yet which spell will be copied. This will lead to interesting gameplay decisions whether to counter it or not.

I think this card looks exciting for gameplay as it demands more decisions being made.

Oats(08.09.2020 08:09)

Good article!

But I do not think stormcaller will be great in delver. Just because the deck does not want more 3 mana spells.

Andifeated
Bajuwarenzorn(08.09.2020 09:29)

Hi, Oats!

Thank you for your comment and your nice words!
You could be right, the three-mana slot is quite contested between Oko, True-Name Nemesis and Delver not wanting to pay more than two Mana for any card!

Let’s see what happens. =)

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