It's that time again. The Magic Online Cube has returned, and just in time! We still have a couple weeks before Born of the Gods is legal, so Melissa and I figured we would regale you with some overpowered drafting shenanigans.

Unlike the last time however - during the Holiday Cube - this version of the Cube is unpowered. This means that cards like the Power Nine (Black Lotus, Mox Ruby, Time Walk, etc.), Library of Alexandria, and Mishra's Workshop are not present. We still have cards like Natural Order, Recurring Nightmare, Survival of the Fittest, and Grim Monolith, so degenerate and powerful things are still possible. Wizards simply didn't want to wear out the spectacle that was the Powered Cube, which is understandable. If we had it available to us all the time, it would no longer be special.

That being said, let's take a look at the draft!

Magic Online Cube Draft #3 - Draft

Magic Online Cube Draft #3 - Round 1

Magic Online Cube Draft #3 - Round 2

Magic Online Cube Draft #3 - Round 3

This deck turned out to be kind of awesome, but we didn't really know about it until we started playing it. It had a lot of the perfect cards, like Bitterblossom, several sweepers, an Umezawa's Jitte, and Karn Liberated. Even the newest Elspeth, Sun's Champion and Gideon Jura were, of course, amazing. The deck had everything it needed to fulfill its destiny as a solid control deck, including my all-time favorite card: Cryptic Command!

One card I was pleasantly surprised with every time we played it was Sakashima's Student. Whether we were using ninjutsu to sneak it into play or simply hard casting it to copy a Baneslayer Angel, the card was every bit as good as a Clone should be in limited. I was especially fond of our play against the Sorin, Lord of Innistrad and the Grave Titan.

The funny thing about Cube is how you can gauge the power of your deck by how many Modern banned cards you've drafted, like Bitterblossom and Umezawa's Jitte. Despite those powerful cards, one of the best things about drafting Cube is that there are more than enough answers. I had things like Bitterblossom and Karn Liberated, and my opponent had an Oblivion Ring or a Forbid. He had a Sword of Body and Mind and I had a Seal of Cleansing in the sideboard. That's one thing that's great about the Cube, and about older cards in general really: they tend to be more powerful because they're often more versatile; cards like Vindicate or Cryptic Command or Jace, the Mind Sculptor. Even when your spells get countered or killed, you never feel like you're out of the game because you have plenty of live topdecks.

One of the best things about the Cube is that you always get to feel like you're playing Magic. It's not like Theros or Return to Ravnica where if you miss a land drop or two it's almost impossible to catch back up. Cube has powerful cards at every casting cost. If you get stuck on two mana, you could always draw a Balance or a Bitterblossom (I know, I keep mentioning it) to hold off their 5/5 dragon. In fact I remember topdecking Karn Liberated in my last match and it completely brought me back into what seemed like a somewhat unwinnable game. The same was true with cards like Martial Coup and Elspeth, Sun's Champion. It really highlights the fact that the best cards in the game are as great as they are due to their versatility.

If you end up drafting the Cube you might be surprised to find that all of the Signets have also been removed (for example Dimir Signet). This is kind of a big deal and it means the games will often end up playing out much slower. Since all ten Signets were in the previous Cube, the first player to get out a Signet was often at a huge advantage. As such, you should value mana fixing (mostly nonbasic lands like fetches and duals) quite highly. As you could see, Melissa and I had about nine in our deck and things ran quite smoothly.

Since Born of the Gods is still a ways off from being legal on Magic Online, and you guys seem to have loved my Modern and Cube videos, let me know what you guys would like to see next Monday. On Friday I'll be providing my Top 10 Born of the Gods Sleepers article (as I do with every new set) and I would love to hear your ideas for some Monday content. Right now I'm thinking of the Modern monoblue Taking Turns deck with Time Warps and Jace Beleren and Cryptic Commands that I played on my stream a few days back, or perhaps another Cube draft. Either way, Melissa will still be present and accompanying me with the commentary.

That's about all I have for this week. If you guys like what you see, I highly recommend you give a Magic Online Cube draft a try, or pick up some cards from TCGplayer and build your own! They're just as fun in real life! Thanks for watching and I'll catch you next week.

Frank Lepore
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