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Card of the Day

Card : Cranial Extraction  
Cost : 3B  
Type : Sorcery - Arcane  
Text : Name a nonland card. Search target player's graveyard, hand, and library for all cards with that name and remove them from the game. Then that player shuffles his or her library.


Cranial Extraction 
Champions of Kamigawa Rare

Reviewed September 14, 2004

Constructed: 3.7
Casual: 3.2

Ratings are based on a 1 to 5 scale
1 being the worst.  3 ... average.  
5 is the highest rating

Click here to see all our 
Card of the Day Reviews 


* game store owner in CA, ShuffleAndCut

Wow... this thing stops dead any fragile combo decks that would dare to try to sneak their tricks in.  Lobotomy was decent, but this thing is so good, with only one colored mana specified.  Really nice as a sideboard card, and it might even main deck if the field warrants it.  If you can figure out what your opponent is running quickly, you can really wreak havoc by pulling key cards from his deck.  Wow... wow... wow...

In limited, main deck is useless, but it could be sided in if your opponent shows a bomb game 1 that you just can't deal with.

In casual... oh yeah... if your friends are always playing some heinous creature or spell against you, you now have your weapon. =)

Constructed: 4
Casual: 3.5
Limited: 1.5

   Current Price:
Cranial Extraction - Champions of Kamigawa - $TBA

   Combos Well With:
Lobotomy - Invasion - $1.41


Judge Bill

*Level 2
MTG Judge

*game store employee

Lobotomy on crack. You have to name a card, but these days, in the days of the netdecks, you know exactly the card you want to name. Mono-colored as opposed to Lobotomy, so it's easier to cast. And in any constructed format, you're going to get exactly what you need. Only very fast deck (read affinity and sligh will get around this, as you'll be dead (or very close) when you cast this, and they have the cards they need out already.
In limited, however, it's anywhere from "meh" to awful. You get one card from this, and only if they haven't put it in play yet.
Constructed - 4
Casual - 3.5
Limited - 1


Jeff Zandi

5 Time Pro Tour

Cranial Extraction
This card is immediately good. The ability, for only four mana, to remove
any and all occurances of a troublesome card from your opponent's deck,
hand, graveyard is very useful. This card is much better, naturally, in
constructed, but might be a good card for limited in games two and three
when you know what "bombs" are hiding in your opponent's deck.
CASUAL:           3.5
LIMITED:          3.0

Ray "Monk"
* Level 3 DCI Judge
*DCI Tournament Organizer

Cranial Extraction


So, itís a Lobotomy that doesnít have to hit a card in hand for effectively less cost, since itís not two coloredÖ.


Why am I not thrilled? Lobotomy was only good against combo decks, of which there arenít many right now, and Blue Control, if you could get lucky and nail their win condition. And even then, using some normal cheap black discard like Duress was much better in the former case, and mass discard spells like Hymn to Tourach or Mind Twist were better in the latter case.


While this card is likely to see play, especially in sideboards, the card, like yesterdayís, is simply unexciting for a player in terms of mechanics, and not strong enough to excite a player with its power.


Constructed:                 3

Casual:                         1

Limited:                        1



* game store owner (The Game Closet - Waco,TX)

Wow, in stark contrast to yesterdays card, this card is great! This card can outright crush combo decks. If there is a sideboard card that you fear, this card will be there to clean it out. It's also only requires one black mana in the casting cost, so you can easily splash into a lot of decks. I'd be extremely surprised if this card doesn't make an impact on constructed play.

I think casual players will eat this card up as well. There will be a lot of Lightning Angels and Elvish Pipers being extracted. Unfortunately, for limited play, it's only good if your opponent got some crazy bomb that you're worried about.

Constructed: 3.5
Casual: 4
Limited: 1.5
Cranial Extraction --

Remember that blue-and-black spell that allowed you to look at your opponent's hand, find a card, and strip their deck of that card? Remember Lobotomy? What would happen if that card cost just black (making it easier to cast), and the card that you wanted to get rid of didn't have to be in that player's hand (making it easier to get)? Wouldn't that card just be all-around better? Why, yes, yes it would.

That's Cranial Extraction in a nutshell. I can see this card making a huge impact in Constructed play (imagine using it against Tooth and Nail early), but I can also see Casual players really enjoying this card, too. Who wouldn't like stripping their buddy's deck of their most useful cards?

Limited play weakens this card a bit, just because you aren't quite sure what to aim for. It might be a decent sideboard option if your opponent shows you a bomb.

Constructed Rating: 3.5
Casual Rating: 3.5
Limited Rating: 2.5

 Van Zandt

Cranial Extraction
YES!  Splashable lobotomy is excellent.  Like cabal therapy,  knowledge of
matchups makes this card much more powerful,  and it really should solve a
lot of problems...  you can never really "miss" when you're making sure they
never draw that one spell that'll wreck you, right?  Not quite as strong in
limited though,  maybe a sideboard card if you see something really mean, 
or multiple copies of a strong spell.
constructed 4
casual 3.5
limited 1.5

Copyright 2001


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