Spiteful Banditry
Spiteful Banditry


Date Reviewed:  July 18, 2023

Constructed: 3.75
Casual: 4.25
Limited: 4.37
Multiplayer: 4.37
Commander [EDH]: 4.37

Ratings are based on a 1 to 5 scale. 1 is bad. 3 is average. 5 is great.

Reviews Below: 


Enchantments that clear the table are a little unusual in Magic – I think they’ve been cautious with the concept ever since Parallax Wave proved to be way more effective than they expected. This card, then, might raise eyebrows, given the obvious comparisons to a certain card that was recently banned in Standard. However, the once-per-turn clause means it’s unlikely to suffer the same fate; it’s more like a bonus you can get for making plays than something that strangles a whole game. It’s also worth noting that it provides a psychological deterrence to Aristocrat/sacrifice-based strategies, and is a continuous advantage-generator that red has historically lacked, especially in multiplayer contexts.

The quote in the card’s flavor text – which is an actual line from Return of the King – is an inversion of the way the sentiment is usually presented (we generally say “one good turn . . .”). It’s about what you’d expect from a mind of metal and wheels, as Treebeard put it. According to what research I could do, that original proverbial phrase was first recorded around the early 1400s, and as a philologist, Tolkien was probably more familiar than most with how things like that are used.

Constructed: 3.5
Casual: 4.5
Limited: 4.5
Multiplayer: 4.5
Commander [EDH]: 4.5

 James H. 


Spiteful Banditry feels a good bit like a red version of The Meathook Massacre, albeit slightly restrained. It comes down as a massive board wipe in effect, and while it’s weaker on-board, never underestimate the power of Treasure generation over a long game. I don’t think this is a particularly subtle card, but it is a strong one; red has gotten fewer scaling board wipes over the years compared to what it used to get, and the extra red pip doesn’t make this unplayable. I think this is a rather solid card that even stacks well with other copies of itself; while The Meathook Massacre was legendary, this is not, and each one can trigger individually.

Constructed: 4 (probably best in slower control shells, but might be a solid “break glass in case of emergency” option in faster ones)
Casual: 4
Limited: 4.25
Multiplayer: 4.25 (it triggers each turn, potentially)
Commander [EDH]: 4.25

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