In honor of it being Halloween, I wanted to do more of a thematic article and list my top 3 scariest cards in the history of Force of Will. Those cards that gave you a huge feeling of dread if your opponent had them, the ones that everyone feared their opponent had in their hand and knew how to use properly. These cards can be from anytime in Force of Will history (starting in Grimm Cluster because I don't know anything about Life Break) as long as they meet the criteria: soul crushing, the picture of defeat, cards that gave you nightmares.
#3 - Laevateinn, the demon sword
In all its glory, I present to you the initial harbinger of Force of Wills doom. Many players remember transitioning from the hardcore control meta to a rampant dominance of Bahamut overnight thanks to the printing of the Faria & Melgis dual decks giving us this card. With no counterplay available on release, the only thing you could do was pray that your opponent either didn't open with Laevateinn or you opened more copies and were also playing Bahamut. Laevateinn spawned a dark time in the games history; new deck ideas were no longer rewarded, the first cries of a dead game, the longest off season in memory, the year no Miles brother was at worlds, one of the most boring world championships to watch. While that last one may not have been Laevateinn's fault directly, I'm still putting it up there in its body count. I could go on for this entire article about what a horror Bahamut and Laevateinn were to casual and competitive players alike, but there's still 2 more unspeakable horrors on this list.
#2 - LAevateinn, the demon sword
If you thought Laevateinn was bad when it came out in a dual deck and had no counter play, imagine what it was like when it did have counter play and still dominated. I present to you: the era of Valentina and Reflect. With only Deathscythe initially existing during the era of stamped Laevateinn (and later on Black Moonbeam) it still didn't do enough to stop it from appearing in every deck imaginable (mostly Reflect initially). While hitting your opponent with a big J-ruler the turn it comes out is certainly a frightening prospect to play around, there was a solid stretch of time where nothing was scarier than Reflect with 30 counters flipping and immediately being able to counter every play you had for the rest of the game as your opponents Gwibers flew over your pathetic board. Once Reflect got banned and we moved into the 2017 competitive season, Laevateinn stayed strong in the format with Valentina 2.0, a deck that once again redefined Laevateinn fear. Reducing the cost of every Gods Art across all 7 kings by 4 with a simple pre-untap tap and a main phase tap, Val 2 was the scariest J-Ruler deck since Bahamut. Even Black Moonbeam couldn't stop her from getting in one good hit thanks to her ability to search Laevateinn and sac one before flipping then playing another to maintain swiftness. Truly Valentina 2 showed off every aspect of Laevateinn's power and had the top 8 numbers expected of a vessel of Laevateinn.
#1 - Laevateinn, the demon sword
Enter the 2017 season; Laevateinn is announced as a GP top 16 promo. Valentina players are excited for this. But something is amiss; these Valentina players are playing Captain Hook, drawing out games instead of going for an early flip and killing their opponent as quickly as possible. The Demon Sword demanded a new vessel, and for 3 months we had to live with the most singular format since Laevateinn was first printed: Pricia. There were a few iterations of the deck as it evolved into the myth version, but every single one of them contained the Sacred Elf/Laevateinn turn 2 otk. Much more consistent a turn 2 than we had ever seen before, I personally used it to win the first Grand Prix it was legal at playing maybe 2 hours of Force of Will across my 10 matches. My round 1 ended in 3 minutes. It was truly a terrifying era, and Black Moonbeam and Deathscythe meant very little in the face of the massive resonators Pricia had at her disposal. But as always, not including these cards or mulligan them away meant certain death. It wasn't until the release of L4 that this card was put to rest in the face of a terrifyingly consistent FTK using Cheshire Cats Assistance, and the inital use of the card had been so bastardized beyond recognition that we had to ban it across all formats forever. Rest in peace Laevateinn, and may the horror you inflicted on this game never be matched.
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