Better Packages: Counter Spells

Love it or hate it, counters are here to stay. My philosophy when it comes to counters is “if your enemy is angry, irritate him” and counters irritate even the most seasoned players. This article will focus on my counter package that I use in many of my EDH decks and the reason for those cards (and the reason for the ones I don’t play).

When it comes to counter spell selection I look for a few things:

1. Mana effectiveness

2. Spell effectiveness

3. Real world cost

For Example:

Mana Drain is simply an awesome card. This card provides incredible mana effectiveness by only costing two, its spell effectiveness is great because it counters anything and even provides me mana based on the casting cost of the target spell it countered but it falls short when you consider the real world cost of this spell (this card is well over 100 dollars). The real world cost at this point is likely to stay where it is or go higher unless Wizards chooses to reprint this card (as it is not on the restricted list). Please Wizards… reprint Mana Drain.

Force of Will, considered to be one of the best magic cards of all time  but it really falls short in the EDH arena. If you are paying its real converted mana cost of 5 then it didn’t serve its purpose, if you are having to give up card advantage and lose life to counter a spell in EDH then there are much better choices. Also this cards real world cost is also just to high.

No, these cards just fall short when it comes to my counter package. I have found my package to be just the right amount of cards to keep my opponents on their toes and provide just the right amount of effectiveness at a reasonable real world cost. The cards I use are:

 

Spell Crumple

 

Hinder

 

Dissipate

 

Faerie Trickery

 

Counterspell

 

Spell Crumple and Hinder are two EDH staples they do things that no other counter spells do. They tuck the countered spell. For a converted mana cost of 3 they make sure I don’t have to deal with hard hitting generals or spells that can just take over a game.

Dissipate and Faerie Trickery also do some work for a converted mana cost of 3 they exile the countered spell. This is great because if I’m dealing with a spell I certainly don’t want that spell to show up twice.

Counterspell I keep in because of its mana cost, 2. It doesn’t ensure that I won’t have to deal with a card again by tucking it or exiling it but it does provide me more wiggle room when I just have to keep 2 mana open to deal with a problem.

In the past I have run spells like Desertion and Spelljack as they are just awesome, but I have found their biggest limitation is their CMC. I find it hard to just keep passing with 5 to 6 mana open in the hopes I get something good on the return.

Now that I have explained my choices for a better counter package I would love to hear yours. Please leave your comments below and any in sites on cards that I might of missed.

Author: Chris Stephen

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