Today’s booster was duplicate heavy again with Growth Spiral, Eyes Everywhere, and Sharktocrab all making reappearances. In terms of new cards, I picked up Scrabbling Claws and this fiery character:

Rix Maadi Reveler

Rix Maadi Reveler is a 1 Generic ManaRed 2/2 that makes you discard a card before giving you a new one. If you pay the spectacle cost of 2 Generic ManaBlackRed then you get to discard your hand and draw three cards. As you are no doubt already aware, spectacle is the Rakdos keyword that gives you an alternate casting cost so long as you have dealt damage to your opponent this turn1. However, this is one of only two cards2 where the spectacle cost is higher than the original cost in order to confer an additional benefit.

A 2/2 body for 2 mana isn’t bad and it can help you re-jig your opening hand if that is of use to you. I wish it said “you may discard a card” in order to make that element optional but that is a minor niggle3. However, the ability to discard your entire hand and get three cards is very good, especially if you do this around turn 5-6 when you don’t have a hand left to discard. Card advantage is one of those crucial things in Magic and getting 3 cards and a 2/2 creature for 4 mana is a very good rate4 even if you do end up discarding a card or two.

Whilst looking at this card I became intrigued by the “Rix Maadi” name. What does it mean? Is it some sort of sect within the Rakdos cult similar to the clans within the Gruul? No, it turns out it is the name of the Rakdos guildhall buried deep under the city of Ravnica. From the Planeswalker’s Guide to Return To Ravnica, Part 3:

Rakdos dwells inside Rix Maadi, The Dungeon Palace, a guildhall built around a lava pit in the undercity. The most direct route to Rix Maadi is down an immense stone staircase that leads down an ancient tunnel carved deep into the earth by a wurm and enforced with thick stone pillars. Rakdos members call this subterranean passage the Demon’s Vestibule. The crumbling walls of the tunnel are covered in colorful banners and old bloodstains. These faded and ripped banners depict all manner of grotesque acts as well as promote diversion clubs and “festivals.” This creates a dark carnival tone even before you reach Rix Maadi. As you descend into the undercity, the temperature rises. Everything is cast in a red glow from the veins of molten rock that branch across the walls and ground. Before Ravnica became covered in city, this section was a volcano. The top of the volcano was long ago stripped away and replaced by buildings, but the molten core and lava pits are still intact.

Rix Maadi stands at the far end of a courtyard, its ornate stone edifice flanked by jagged basalt pillars flowing with lava streams. Tattered cloth banners hang limply from metal spikes and ominous red light pours out through the giant doorway. The façade of Rix Maadi is the only part of the guildhall that resembles an actual building. Inside, Rix Maadi is a large natural cavern with a high ceiling where “chimneys” ventilate the immense underground chamber.

Well, that certainly sounds like a lovely place to engage in revelries…

  1. It doesn’t need to be from combat; as Jason Donovan so nearly sang, “any damage will do”. I like to use Spear Spewer so I can get this done in my 1st main phase before doing anything else. ↩︎

  2. The other being Rafter Demon. There are 10 cards in total that include the spectacle keyword. ↩︎

  3. The number of scenarios where you’d want to play this without getting the card draw should be none but I always like the flexibility that “may” allows just in case there is a situation I’ve not predicted. ↩︎

  4. Especially considering this is BlackRed; you expect a reasonable card draw rate when playing Blue↩︎

This post is part of a weekday series where I open up a booster pack and pick a card to discuss. Whilst these are often the best cards from the set, I'll often pick one that is a bit niche or one that has cool artwork or flavour text. If there's a particular card you want me to take a look at, get in touch or join my Discord community.