Field of Ruin
February 13, 2018
Commander [EDH]: 3.33
Ratings are based on a 1 to 5 scale.
1 is bad. 3 is average. 5 is great.
This must be like the seventh attempt they’ve made at a “fair” Strip Mine. Many of those previous attempts turned out to be at least as unfair as Strip Mine itself, but Field of Ruin is an interesting one. I know that not everyone gets as excited about fair cards as I do, but it’s noteworthy that this one doesn’t put you down a land the way Ghost Quarter does. I can remember lots of situations where I wanted to activate a Ghost Quarter but couldn’t because it would make me unable to cast my own spells. It’s also interesting that in a game with more than two players, each player whose land wasn’t destroyed by the Field actually ends up ahead one land. Use it with caution in Commander – or not, if you have some kind of alliance going on!
The bane of ruiner of both Azcanta and Ramunap, Field of Ruin has played an important role in Standard. Now that Ramunap has been banned, Field of Ruin has been relegated to the side board to stop those pesky flip lands.
Field of Ruin feels like the best “Wasteland” so far. Its a bit slow but t feels fair that you get to destroy a problem while still maintaining equilibrium. In multiplayer it gets every player a land, so be smart and use it as political leverage. As a side note I played this against a deck with 0 basic lands and the results were hilarious.
The latest riff in the grand lineage of lands like Wasteland, Tectonic Edge, and Ghost Quarter: a land to destroy other lands. In a format where you have powerful lands, mostly the flip-side lands, Field of Ruin serves as a nice safety valve to make sure they don’t go completely unanswered. The replacement with a basic land is also a nice, seemingly symmetrical effect that you can build your deck to take advantage of; a lot of decks will go as light on basic lands as they feasibly can go, so this becomes a lot more one-sided if you can support it.
I would say that this is largely better than Tectonic Edge and a wash with Ghost Quarter. Coming online on turn 3 is a downside, but it does have a nice upside in replacing itself on your side of the field. Speaking of that, be mindful of this with multiple players, since you’ll accelerate everyone whose land you choose not to destroy.
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