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Pojo's Magic The Gathering
Card of the Day

Daily Since November 2001!

Elite Arcanist
Image from Wizards.com

 Elite Arcanist
- M14

Reviewed July 31, 2013

Constructed: 2.63
Casual: 3.25
Limited: 3.40
Multiplayer: 2.88

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

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Card of the Day Reviews 


Elite Arcanist

I feel like I should mention that this card technically has Imprint, but isn't keyworded as having it. Maybe a reprint in the next Mirrodin block? (Will there even be another one?) The Arcanist's power depends on what card it exiles, and how many copies of it you can get off before he dies. Since the copy ability is a tap ability and it doesn't have haste, it's possible to lose the Arcanist before you ever get to use its ability, which would mean you lost a card out of your hand for nothing. But if the Arcanist lives long enough to make even two copies, it was all worth it.

The best card to exile would be a simple draw spell like Think Twice, or even something as simple as Opt. Arcanist only works with sorceries, sadly, so Ponder won't work. A cheaper spell would be better, since you're paying the CMC every time. Boomerang would be a really unfair choice-- everybody hates repeatable bounce. But as a mere 1/1 for four mana, that can't use its ability until you untap with it out, it's just too fragile to take seriously.

Constructed- 2
Casual- 2.5
Limited- 4
Multiplayer- 2

David Fanany

Player since 1995

Elite Arcanist

I really wish that the guy in this card's art had been holding an Isochron Scepter - that's obviously what this is a reference to. While Elite Arcanist is much less good than its predecessor at locking people out of the game (which is probably a good thing, overall), you do have to respect any card that can turn a spell into a repeatable effect. Note that it doesn't depend on the original instant staying in your hand, like cards with splice do.

Constructed: 2/5
Casual: 4/5
Limited: 3/5
Multiplayer: 3/5

Michael "Maikeruu" Pierno

Today's card of the day is Elite Arcanist which is a four mana Blue 1/1 that when it comes into play has you exile an instant from hand to allow you to copy and cast it for the converted mana cost and tapping.
Without Haste and a low one toughness this is fairly vulnerable, but the potential to repeat a a stall or damaging spell is often worth the risk. Many different cards combo with this very well and it will undoubtedly see some play across formats, but the drawbacks of mana cost with low toughness and lack of Haste will likely keep it out of top tier decks.

In Limited this is somewhat less vulnerable and powerful due to fewer instants being available to both you and any opponents. The potential is still high, but getting this and a useful card to exile at the same time can be problematic. Even as a dead weight card in hand it is worth a slot in a Sealed deck that has at least a few viable targets in the pool and the single Blue allows some flexibility in what colors are used. In Booster passing it is risky as an opponent can win with it and drafting support is certainly possible.

Constructed: 3.5
Casual: 3.5
Limited: 3.5
Multiplayer: 3.5


Elite Arcanist

Instinctively I want to compare this card to Israha’s scepter. The scepter was harder to kill and available in any color, but was restricted to instants or sorceries under a casting cost of two. The Elite Arcanist is within easy ping killing range at one toughness, however it might be able to hold its own if you’re able to use it to recast cancel. In limited this card is useful because the casting cost is converted to X, which would allow you to cast an instant outside of your colors. Some suggested targets in draft (Shock, Silence, Opportunity, Doom blade, Chandra’s Outrage)


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