Cube Card Evaluation: Balance

Hello Everybody, this is the first article of our Cube Card Evaluation column. Each week we evaluate why a card is good or bad in cube, and in which situations it’s at his worst or at his best. Today we start with an iconic white card, the one that appears to give the name to our site: Balance.

Let’s start by saying this: Balance is a broken card. And playing broken cards like Balance can be easy, but it takes more than just having good cards in your library in order to win when you are cube drafting. Cubes are in general full of awesome and incredible cards. So, what can we do to make Balance really stand out? Magic is a game of economics, after all, and playing a card arbitrarily is a waste of resources. Our goal is find a way to break a card that is already broken.

balance

In what situation is it insane?

Giving a first look at Balance, you will notice that it only effects lands, cards in hand, and creatures. Therefore, if you can build a deck that is designed to abuse things like planeswalkers, artifacts, and enchantments, you are going to build a solid home for Balance. Another point to look at with Balance is the potential to make your opponent lose their cards. For this to work, you have to be able to empty your hand out faster than your opponent. This strategy is really good if you can do something like say, drop land, mox, signet on turn one. Then turn two drop as much of of your hand as possible and then Balance away.

The (in)famous way to go off with Balance in cube is with Greater Gargadon. The way this works is pretty obvious but, I’m going to elaborate that anyway. First, you suspend the Gargadon and play like you normally would making sure to deal with opposing planeswalkers, enchantments, and problematic artifacts.Then, when you’re ready, you sac a bunch of stuff to the Gargadon and cast Balance. Most of the time, if you do this right, you are going to end up with a Gargadon on an empty board.

All in all, this is a pretty fun play, but be careful. You can’t just go all in there, sacrificing all your lands when you’re playing against an opponent with open lands. For all you know, your opponent could have a kill spell or a counter. Greater Gargadon is a brutal 9/7 beater but, never forget, it dies to everything and gets chump blocked for days.

There are many ways to break Balance. For the most part, it takes timing. You need to play it when the value is maximized. This means that you have to be patient some times.

If you have any other interactions with Balance, feedback or questions, just  leave them in the comments.

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