Saturday, September 28, 2013

Theros EDH Set Review, Part 6: Multicolor

I'm quite surprised at how many Multicolor cards we got in this set. It certainly made sense to have some in the set, since we are coming off the Return to Ravnica block. Having some mechanical overlap and synergy between two sequential blocks is a smart move. Still, this is a bit more than I expected, though I'm certainly not unhappy about it.

Sweet! More Minotaur Tribal love.
Don't be a dick and play this in Rafiq.

Or, alternately, DO.
No, this isn't getting played, ever. /sarcasm

Seriously, Angel of Despair on steroids is 100% pure EDH gold. I can't wait to be That Guy and pair this off with a Deadeye Navigator. And then feel like a real prick for it, and never do it again.
That there is always a real chance that the +1 could literally do nothing - either you have no creatures in play, or no way to spend all that mana - is a major downer. That said, making hasty dudes for 0 is pretty cool, and the potential for crazy ramp is compelling. I'd definitely be happy shoving this into Animar or Stonebrow, or pretty much anything with lots and lots of creatures. Highly playable in the right decks, but there isn't any one deck in which I feel this is an absolute must-run.
Seems okay. Not sure how often the combat damage trigger will be relevant though. There are plenty of Echantments worth destroying of course, but generally, you want removal to be reliable and consistent.
I don't often get to call a recursion spell "crap" but in colors with access to Eternal Witness, Regrowth, Treasured Find, Phyrexian Reclamation, etc... well, this seems like a 3rd-tier option at best. But it is a Gorgon so it gets some mad flavor points for Golgari decks, and it's a creature itself, which is more inherently abusable than spells. Simply put, this will get played because it is recursion and fairly unique at that.
Watchwolf on steroids is still, basically, just Watchwolf. 
The fact that it's power is static (relatively, compared to, say, Wee Dragonauts or similar), and that it has Trample, makes this much better in EDH than it's contemperaries that require you to cast all your spells at once. I'll probably throw one in Melek as it seems most appropriate there. But honestly I don't expect it will do much.
This seems to have excited and intrigued a segment of the EDH crowd, but I have a hard time getting behind this. It's a creature that HAS to stay on the battlefield for several turns for it to even start to deliver a return on your investment, and that violates one of my main rules for evaluating creatures. I've been playing the similarly-templated Mercurial Chemister for a year now, and the number of times it has died before I could tap it even once far outstrips the number of times it's stuck around - the main difference is, I only need to tap the Chemister ONCE for it to have value - this needs to tap at least twice, usually more than that.
Well, if you ever wanted to use Pyre Zombie as your General, now's your chance, I guess...
Garbage. Points for having the best creature type combination in the set, though.
Perfect fit for all those Chorus of the Conclave decks out there... oh, wait...
The 15 year old goth kid in me really, really loves this art. Actually, the grown-up, old-ass man in me really likes the art too. I don't even know what the card does. I can't read it - every time I try I just stare at the art some more. It's a Siren, so that actually makes a lot of sense.
LOLWUT? This seems way more like a U/B card than a W/U card, but whatever, I'll take it. Card is insane, in case you were wondering. Sure he'll need a little help getting past the average EDH fatty, but it's definitely worth it. Might I recommend Steel of the Godhead, or perhaps Aqueous Form?
I'm so playing this is Edric and Damia. Oh! Combo with Drogskol Reaver!  Neat!

To be clear, this isn't really that great of a card, but it happens to fill a hole, in that my Edric deck was in need of a good way to gain some life without diluting the creature base. This will do nicely.
I know I've been shitting all over Heroic in this set review, and I stand by that criticism, but I really, really like this card. I still haven't figured out how to make it good in EDH, but I really want to, 'cause damn.
Oh my holy crap. This is my absolute favorite card in the set, by a mile. Nothing else comes close.



This is actually a pretty good utility spell. The two damage is pretty incidental, but you're not actually paying more for it. The only problem is, it competes with Hull Breach, and I don't think it wins that battle. You might run both, though...
The best Dimir spell in years comes in the block AFTER a Ravnica block? What? I don't know why in hell this wasn't in Gatecrash, but whatever. I'm just glad we got it eventually. Very good card.
I see this getting crapped on in comments and forums, but it looks solid to me. Maybe that's my bias as a die-hard Wrexial player, but this sure seems like a good fit for that deck at least. 
Limited jank.
Weird, splashy and potentially powerful. Definitely getting some attention in the format, but I personally don't like it much. Graveyard hosers tend to hose ME more than anyone else in my group. It is  also a 6/6 with solid evasion, though. 
It's quite irrational that I wan to play the crap out of this card, since it's technically a little worse than Fact or Fiction and I don't play that card much at all. But as a true Izzet fan, I feel obligated to give this a shot anyway.
The activated abilities might as well not exist. We'll hardly ever use them, to the point we'll likely forget they are even there, and probably miss out on the one golden opportunity to use them, remembering only a few turns later, smacking our head in frustration. "Shit! I had mana open! I coulda saved her!"  Still, it is a 4/5 for four mana, which is good, and the Scry 1 death trigger will be a huge boon for certain decks (Savra and Ghave, I'm looking at you!)

Well, we're almost done with this set review, but we've got Artifacts and Lands yet to go, and for the multicolor section, we've got to do the top 5 picks as well.

5. Steam Augury
4. Daxos of Meletis
3. Psychic Intrusion
2. Ashen Rider
1. Prophet of Kruphix

Lots and lots of good stuff here! In addition to the five cards above, I'm definitely playing both Planeswalkers, Reaper of the Wilds, and a handful of other cards. I'm also really love Anax and Cymede. And while Medomai might be a bit of an antisocial card, there's no denying that he's good.


  1. I've been trying to figure out a good way to use Anax and Cymede in Commander as well, as it's hard to argue with that sort of mass pump in colors that get generally poor options for it. In my case, I'm thinking about including them as part of the 99 in a Ruhan deck that aims to use instants and sorceries (as well as a few choice enchantments) to make tokens and spells for general utility and for purposes of pumping guys and evasion.

    Using guys like Talrand, Young Pyromancer, Blaze Commando and Akroan Crusader to go with spells like Flame Jab and Haze of Rage (Anax and Cymede love both spells), cost reducers like Helm of Awakening and Arcane Melee and cards like Land Tax, Sunforger, and Wild Research to power the engines.

    It may end up being total jank, but it seems like a reasonable place to start for trying to make Heroic work in Commander.

  2. I had the same reaction to Daxos, feels more B/U. Probably white for being part Amrou Kithkin. :-)

  3. Daxos can get past your average EDH fatty. He basically has trouble against only against other 2 power creatures.

    1. Good call - I read that first line as exactly the opposite of what it says. That's what I get for writing my set reviews at like 4:00 in the morning.

  4. Hey, just wanted to say that I love reading your blog and comments. I actually have been toying around with a deck that uses Underowlorld Cerberus as a way to protect my GY from hate while casting from it and beating face. I would appreciate your thoughts on the build if you're feeling up to it:

    Creatures (20)
    02 Gravecrawler
    01 Arrogant Bloodlord
    03 Haakon, Stromgald Scourge
    02 Ashenmoor Liege
    03 Underworld Cerberus
    03 Demigod of Revenge
    02 Gray Merchant of Asphodel
    02 Flayer of the Hatebound
    02 Sire of Insanity
    Artifact (04)
    04 Rakdos Signet

    Enchantment (3)
    02 Burning Vengeance
    01 Haunted Crossroads

    Other (9)
    03 Nameless Inversion
    02 Buried Alive
    04 Faithless Looting

    Land (24)
    24 Mana Producers