What Exactly is so “Desolate” About Desolate Lighthouse?

One definition of “desolate” is “solitary or lonely” … and I really don’t see that with Desolate Lighthouse.

In fact, I think this new land from Avacyn Restored is going to get along well with others.

Desolate Lighthouse

Getting extra utility out of your lands is a long-standing opportunity for freebie value in deck design. Most decks at least start with a “36 spell / 24 land” breakdown… So when you use a Preordain or Ponder to get a land, that might be awesome in the early game (you will lose lots of potential mana if you miss your drop) but generally poop-tacular otherwise (you only have so many spells, and you are using a spell slot to get a land).

By the same token, getting spell-like value out of your lands can be exciting because you are using one of the “24” to get a little bit of “36” without having to actually use one of them.

Now what kind of thirty-sixes are we talking about joining up with?

How about miracles?

People are all crazy about Temporal Mastery, but as super exciting as that potential Time Walk is, there are lots of miracles you might want to play. In particular, we have seen a handful of red miracle cards that seem highly playable. LSV got Bonfire of the Damned as a preview card over at ChannelFireball.com (and the reality is, U/R decks are always clamoring for a Wrath of God of some sort, and Bonfire of the Damned has lots of potential up-side). Reforge the Soul has the words “draws seven cards” on it; we have seen from decks like Innovator Dragonstorm that some decks don’t care what the opponent is drawing as long as they get to draw up a seven of their own (and for two?) … But given the relatively short space of what we have seen from Avacyn Restored so far? Thunderous Wrath seems like it should be one of the best cards in the set!

Thunderous Wrath is probably one of the best cards in Avacyn Restored.

Even a crappy, regular, Thunderous Wrath is an instant speed Fireball for five. Like more-or-less exactly a [harder to splash] Fireball for five. Six mana, five mana to man or Beast… But you can run it on the opponent’s turn. And for its miraculous R? It is the best Lightning Bolt ever! (and how many miracle cards are actually awesome when you rip one on your second turn?)

So what does this say about Desolate Lighthouse?

I think Desolate Lighthouse — and I think maybe our buddy Tibalt, the Find-Blooded might fit in here, too — could make for a fine enabler in a miracles-linear deck. The first thing I thought when I started seeing all these potentially playable miracle cards was “why not play all miracles?”

I mean really?

Any miracles in your opening hand might be over-costed, but if you play enough Miracles, you can set up all your rips to be under-costed miracle Mises. Mise!

So how does Doesolate Lighthouse make itself seem less desolate? Two ways:

  1. You can discard expensive miracles. Nobody wants to be caught with some of these clunkers in grip. I mean Banishing Stroke is an A+ for W, but you wouldn’t be caught dead running it for 5W seeing as you will probably already be dead.
  2. You get to draw cards on your opponent’s turn. Drawing cards — on your opponent’s turn or otherwise — is pretty awesome. How about a miracle on the other guy’s turn + discarding an unwanted clunky miracle? And yeah… you don’t use a spell slot for the extra option.

I am not sure this is a Snap four-of, but the success of the other lands in this cycle, I can certainly imagine some up side. Watch out Wolf-Run and Moorland Haunt!


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