Saturday, October 2, 2010
Hot Tub Time Elemental
I was watching a TV show, or something, and the main character was talking insincerely about how "back in the 90's" he spent a year dressing like Kurt Cobain. I think it was Glee.
Newsflash: Kurt Cobain dressed in flannels pretty much non-stop. People wear flannels today. Of course, he took the notion to a new level…but the sentiment still falls flat in my mind. Because it's not like it required a lifestyle change or anything. You don't have to do anything crazy with your hair or start wearing makeup or anything.
Here's something else straight from the 90's…a little card I came across in my collection. First off, its in FRENCH. Second off, its TIME ELEMENTAL.
Time Elemental used to be a very powerful card. It was in as a singleton in the winning 1994 World Championship Deck, alongside the moxes, Time Walk, Timetwister and of course Icy Manipulator.
And my theory is that it STILL has some power, at least in EDH.
Why did people stop using Time Elemental? I believe because it was too slow, and too fragile. It takes 3 turns to get it into play, and then 4 mana to use the ability. Not feasible in constructed (or so they think!)
But what an ability! Return "target permanent" to it's owner's hand. Direct and straightforward, a powerful ability like this would be worth more in a modern set, I guarantee it. But it probably would never come up at all, considering the universal hatred for repeatable land bounce.
What did Zach Dolan bounce with Time Elemental back in 1994? He bounced Mishra's Factory.
I would like to bounce Mishra's Factory right here in 2010. And I think you would, too.
The Lorywn block really expanded the world's elemental selection. They were a tribe, for Pete's sake. Elementals got crazy things like Shriekmaw, Mulldrifter and Chameleon Colossus.
Creatures like Æthersnipe and Nevermaker found ways to kick just about anything off the battlefield.
Compare Time Elemental to either of these cards. Interesting? I think I'm going to start calling this guy Clocky.
Now let's get back to the fragile part of the equation. In normal games, people are slinging Lightning Bolts all over the place. In EDH? Clocky is most likely to get the axe from a sweeper like Damnation. So it doesn't really even matter what Clocky's toughness is.
In a pinch, if you're using your Clocky right, you should even be able to return him to your hand in reaction to the sweeper…as long as you're not going crazy aggressive in which case this card probably isn't for you.
But for the folks who sit back and make their EDH game a social event…check out some flashy new tech. What can more ostentatious than having your pinky subtly at rest over the upmost corner of your Clocky…ready to deploy the tapping at a moment's notice? Delightful.
So you have my thoughts. Review them at your leisure. In the meanwhile, here are some more thoughts.
1. It works with Smokebraider mana. Both casting and ability costs. YESSSS!
2. Time Elemental is made out of clocks. Famous fantasy artist Amy Weber really likes gears and clocks. If Time Elemental was printed today, it would probably be made out of hourglasses. Or a planetarium.
3. It has wings, yet does not fly.
4. It's only weakness…enchanted permanents. Watch me laugh. HAW. HAW. HAW.
5. This is a little worse than Isochron Scepter imprinted with a Boomerang. But it only needs 1 card. And if you bounce it, you don't lose the Boomerang.
6. That is all.
Anyway, hope you like the thoughts. Let me know.