Getting the Most Out of Your Artifacts: [REDACTED]
[REDACTED] is a Logos artifact that has appeared in two sets, Age of Ascension and Mass Mutation. It seems pretty simple. Call Logos four times with it in play, and get a free key. However, there are a lot of strategic considerations that go into it, so I wanted to discuss it in the latest installment of the Getting the Most Out of Your Artifacts series.
Why Is It Good?
Key cheats are good, as they allow you to forge outside your forge a key step. Free key cheats are even better, as they allow you to forge a key without paying any Æmber. [REDACTED] gives you a free key simply for calling Logos four times, which is a sweet deal. Late game, it can be really valuable, as it creates a clock for your opponent. If you have two keys already, then they have to win before you can call Logos four times. In fact, it’s probably not even four times, because it’s likely that you were able to call Logos a couple times on your way to two keys.
How Can It Be Better?
There is a magic combo that works with [REDACTED]. It’s very hard to pull off, and there are only 254 decks in the world (as of this writing) that have the engine, let alone the fuel. Still, if you have a deck that can do it, it’s pretty wild. The combo requires Animator in addition to [REDACTED], and then it needs to have a way of capturing in Logos. This can be capture pips, or possibly Font of the Eye. If you can capture Æmber onto [REDACTED] while it is animated as a creature, you can make [REDACTED] forge a key without calling Logos four times. However, it’s worth noting that [REDACTED] will not automatically forge a key when you put four Æmber onto it. You still have to call Logos to activate the ability. Despite this, the combo allows you to potentially forge with [REDACTED] in just a couple Logos turns, a huge improvement over four full turns.
Are There Downsides?
With everything said above, you might think that [REDACTED] is an amazing card. After all, how many cards let you forge a key for zero Æmber? Might Makes Right, Dark Discovery, Epic Quest, and Triumph, to name a few. However, you don’t often see those cards in tournament winning decks, and there’s a reason for that. They’re slow, inconsistent, or easy to disrupt. Sometimes all three. Might Makes Right can be disrupted by any board sweep. Dark Discovery can be disrupted by a mere deck shuffle. Epic Quest is very difficult to pull off without a lot of Logos archiving. Triumph is just bad, as it’s almost impossible to create the board state necessary to make it work.
Like those key cheats above, [REDACTED] has a serious downside. It’s very slow. In order to make it work, you need to call Logos five times: once to play [REDACTED], and four times to get it to trigger (assuming you don’t have the aforementioned combo). Given that a typical Keyforge game lasts seven turns or so, this is a big ask. Too often I see people trying to force [REDACTED] when they really shouldn’t be calling Logos. Is one fourth of a key worth a wasted turn? Usually not. If you think about it, a fourth of a key is typically about 1.5 Æmber. I know it’s not a perfect comparison because the Æmber on [REDACTED] can’t be stolen, captured, or lost, but it’s still not a huge benefit for calling a house. This is made even more complicated by the fact that Logos typically plays as a support house or a burst house rather than a main house, so you don’t want to be calling them over and over.
Still, if you can play [REDACTED] first turn, there’s at least a decent chance that you can call Logos four more times and get the free key. What if you draw [REDACTED] later in the game, though? In that case, it’s likely a dead draw. The chance of drawing [REDACTED] late and then being able to activate it is very slim.
What About Artifact Control?
Of course, like all artifacts, [REDACTED] can be vulnerable to artifact control. However, there is a particular type of artifact control that isn’t a big deal against most artifacts, but is absolutely devastating to [REDACTED], and that’s Grasping Vines. If [REDACTED] gets bounced to your hand, it becomes all but useless.
You also have to be very careful about “Borrow” and Sneklifter. Having a [REDACTED] stolen, especially by a deck with Logos in it, could end up giving your opponent a free key. This shouldn’t be an issue in archon, where you can read the opponent’s decklist, but it could certainly happen in sealed.
Of course, regular artifact control like Reclaimed by Nature and Poltergeist also works against [REDACTED], but that’s not unique. They are devastating against basically all artifacts. At the very least, soft control cards like Remote Access and Hornswoggle don’t affect [REDACTED].
[REDACTED] is a solid card. Assuming that your opponent doesn’t have artifact steal, you should always play it, and you might gain some benefit from it. However, you need to keep in mind not to force it unless you’re in the final push. If you draw it early, it might just deliver you a free key to win the game.
I hope you enjoyed the article. If you want to discuss it with me, I can be found on most Keyforge Discords or on TCO as SecondAct.