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Magic The Gathering Secret Lair: The Walking Dead

I have been playing Magic: The Gathering since 1994 and have won a few draft tournaments in MTGO and MTG Arena.

What is Secret Lair X The Walking Dead?

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Secret Lair X Walking Dead is a crossover between the world's top trading card game, Magic the Gathering, and AMC's The Walking Dead.

The Walking Dead is a popular television series depicting a post apocalyptic world infested with zombies called walkers.Humans who are killed by the walkers become walkers themselves.The humans also fight amongst themselves in their quest for survival.

The Secret Lair Contains the following:

1x Foil Full-Art Daryl, Hunter of Walkers
1x Foil Full-Art Glenn, the Voice of Calm
1x Foil Full-Art Michonne, Ruthless Survivor
1x Foil Full-Art Negan, the Cold-Blooded
1x Foil Full-Art Rick, Steadfast Leader
5x Different Foil Walker Tokens
1x Foil Treasure Token

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Why is this so controversial?

The release of Secret Lair X Walking Dead has stirred controversy among Magic the Gathering players for the following reasons:

1) It is legal in eternal formats - Creating a limited edition release card becomes a problem when it become a format defining card. Wizards had a problem with Mana Crypt which can only be obtained by buying a novel and Nexus of Fate which was released as a box topper in M19.

Not only is it difficult for players to find these important game pieces but it will also end up costing an arm and a leg.

If the cards were silver bordered then it would not have been a problem.

2) It is not the Magic: the Gathering people grew up with - Magic in its early days was a tabletop version of Dungeons and Dragons. It had knights, dragons, orcs, griffins, elves and merfolk. It did not have Twilight Sparkle, Optimus Prime or Ronald McDonald.

What's next? Bart Simpson? Pickle Rick? LeBron James?

3) These are functionally unique cards - Wizards is setting a dangerous precedent by creating cards which are functionally unique with no in-game equivalent.

4) These are limited time licensed cards - If the property were a Hasbro Property like Transformers, G.I. Joe and My Little Pony, it would be easy to make more cards but if it is a third party license, then it will be much harder to do reprints in the future.

5) This will kill local games stores - The local game store was the backbone of early Magic and served as a venue where people could meet, trade cards and play. Instead of helping these stores, Wizards of the Coast is prioritizing big box stores like Target and Walmart. Wizards is also undercutting these stores by selling exclusive singles that local gaming stores could not obtain though normal channels.

Daryl, Hunter of Walkers

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Daryl, Hunter of Walkers is a red and green creature that costs two colorless, one red and one green mana.

He has four power and four toughness.

At the beginning of your upkeep, target opponent creates three Walker tokens.

Tap Daryl, Hunter of Walkers: Daryl deals 2 damage to target creature.

Whenever a Zombie an opponent controls dies, draw a card.

Darryl is a very flavorful card but giving three two power and two toughness creatures is not a good idea unless you have a spell or effect that can dispatch them so yuou can draw extra cards.

Glenn, the Voice of Calm

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Glenn, the Voice of Calm is a white and blue creature that costs one colorless, one white and one blue mana.

He has one power and three toughness.

Skulk (This creature can’t be blocked by creatures with greater power.)

Whenever Glenn deals combat damage to a player, draw cards equal to his power.

Glenn at first glance may look like a more powerful Ophidian but he can be abused using cards that can pump up creatures such as Umezawa's Jitte.

Michonne, Ruthless Survivor

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Michonne, Ruthless Survivor is a black and green creature that costs three colorless, one black and one green mana.

She has three power and three toughness.

When Michonne enters the battlefield, create two Walker tokens.

As long as Michonne is equipped, she must be blocked if able.

Whenever Michonne and at least two Zombies attack, she gains indestructible until end of turn.

Michonne is a decent card as she produces a total of seven power and seven toughness for a mere five mana. Her ability can be abused through cards that benefit tokens such as Doubling Season or through cards that cause blinking effects so Michonne can produce more tokens such as Thassa, Deep-Dwelling.

Negan, the Cold-Blooded

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Negan, the Cold-Blooded is a red, white and black creature that costs two colorless, one red, one white and one black mana.

He has four power and three toughness.

When Negan enters the battlefield, you and target opponent each secretly choose a creature that player controls. Then those choices are revealed, and that player sacrifices those creatures.

Whenever an opponent sacrifices a creature, you create a Treasure token.

Negan has a prohibitive casting cost but has a neat ability as he can eliminate one to two creatures. He can be blinked to eliminate even more creatures.

Rick, Steadfast Leader

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Rick, Steadfast Leader is a white creature that costs two colorless and two white mana.

He has three power and four toughness.

As Rick enters the battlefield, choose two abilities from among first strike, vigilance, and lifelink.

Humans you control have each of the chosen abilities.

As long as you control four or more Humans, Humans you control get +2/+2.

Rick, Steadfast Leader is perhaps the best card in this set as he is easy to cast and is mono colored. He gives two abilities to his fellow humans and buffs them up with additional power and toughness as long as you have at least four humans.

Best Walking Dead Secret Lair Card

© 2020 Jan Michael Ong