Planechase is a different variant of Magic: The Gathering. In this style, players attempt to wrest control of their settings from their competitors . Each plane has different effects that buff the player, while many present players with a chaotic effect that may either benefit or hurt them. There are four Planechase sets released in the 2012 edition; each provides players with a revisited mechanic from earlier sets. We received the devour deck (Primordial Hunger), while there are others for ninjutsu (Night of the Ninja), cascade (Chaos Reigns), and enchantments (Savage Auras).
Each of the planes provided in these decks benefits the player’s deck in one way. Our favorite in the Primordial Hunger set had to be the Selesnya Loft Gardens, which acted as a Doubling Season for both tokens and counters. If you are lucky enough to roll the planar dice and hit the chaos face, the doubling effect occurs for mana as well. These sets contain phenomenon cards, which provide further benefits. Spatial Merging gives players the chance to reap the benefits for two planes, while Planewide Disaster (Savage Auras deck) destroys all creatures. Thromok the Insatiable is quite literally a Hellion, which provides players with a geometric increase in its power and toughness. Sacrifice 4 creatures and Thromok is an eye-popping 16/16 creature. While it is still a prime target for removal, throw a Lightning Greaves and go to town. An Overrun will give it a further buff and trample, which may be good enough to knock a player out of the game.
Here’s to hoping that Wizards of the Coast make Planechase into a yearly thing. Each of the sets works well together, while providing casual and commander players with a number of different cards. Fans of previous’ sets keywords will love the new cards that are created for this very purpose. The $20 price point of the Planechase decks is sufficiently small that one can easily get into the variant.
Magic the Gathering: Planechase 2012 / Wizards of the Coast / http://www.wizards.com