This entry is part 35 of 37 in the series Generally Speaking

On and off, I hear suggestions about ritual effects in Commander.  Dark Ritual sees very little play, and reasons are usually related to the advantage being ephemeral; you’re two turns ahead in terms of mana for one turn, and one card behind for the rest of the game.  Yet, I see many deck lists with its closest analogue, Mana Vault, including mono-black ones without Dark Ritual.  If you take a look at The Real Top 50, – a database with statistical information on what cards people play in decks posted online – Mana Vault is number 62 on the all time most popular list, where Dark Ritual doesn’t appear at all, not even when considered in mono-black decks where it is most likely to show up, given the narrowness of remaining options compared to other decks.

A quick look through my own decks shows that even I follow this trend; I love to play in the Grixis colours, and none of my decks with black – Rakdos, Lord of Riots, Grimgrin, Corpse-Born, and Ob Nixilis, the Fallen – contain it.  Yet, from those decks, both Ob Nixilis and Grimgrin have Mana Vault.  Should more players be running rites?  Maybe; read on. Read the rest of this entry »