Woot for Spoilers!
It’s that amazing time of year again, that time when we get the slow release of new cards over the next month till the new set is released. This time around we get the slow drip of Journey into Nyx complete with some returning and new mechanics. So I figured I would give you some advanced thoughts on the spoiled cards.
Ajani’s Presence - W - Instant - C - Strive - Ajani’s Presence cost 2W more to cast for each target beyond the first. Any number of target creatures gets +1/+1 and gains indestructible until end of turn. Okay, so here we have a cool card that turns on the Heroic cards in the block, still paying 2WW for two creatures to get +1/+1 and indestructible for one turn seems like it’s just a combat trick for Limited.
Dawnbringer Charioteers - 2WW - Creature - Human Soldier - R - Flying, lifelink. Heroic - Whenever you cast a spell that targets Dawnbringer Charioteers, put a +1/+1 counter on Dawnbringer Charioteers. 2/4. Now that is a Heroic creature. Flying, lifelink, and gets bigger when you target it. I have to say this is going to be a limited bomb, and if we have the right mix of trigger spells this might make the leap to a Heroic deck post rotation. Going to say this is going to be awesome in Block.
Sightless Brawler - 1W - Enchantment Creature - Human Warrior - U - Bestow 4W. Sightless Brawler can’t attack alone. Enchanted creature gets +3/+2 and can’t attack alone. 3/2. Okay so this isn’t goint to be a big card outside of Limited, but yeah, this will be good in Limited as you just cast dudes and turn them sideways all day long.
Sigiled Starfish - 1U - Creature - starfish - C Tap: Scry 1. 0/3. An awesome draft pick and a good two-drop filler for Sealed deck. An 0/3 is good from gumming up the ground and you just tap to scry after it has done it’s job blocking.
Dakra Mystic - U - Creature - Merfolk Wizard - U - U, tap: Each player reveals the top card of his or her library. You may put the revealed cards into their owner’s graveyards. If you don’t, each player draws a card. 1/1. This is a skill tester if I have ever seen one. Granted with the scry effects this just leads to mind games. When my opponent scries and leaves the card does he want me to really mill it, or is he hoping I’ll let him draw the card. This really pushes leveled thinking plans and Jedi mind tricks.
Whitewater Naiads - 3UU - Enchantment Creature - Nymph - U - Constellation - Whenever Whitewater Naiads or another enchantment enters the battlefield under your control, target creature can’t be blocked this turn. 4/4. I really think we are going to see some of the Constellation cards end up in some Standard and Block decks, but I feel this is too slow outside of Limited. Still dropping this the turn after a blue god so this turns on that gods devotion will be epic in Limited.
Scourge of Fleets - 5UU - Creature - Kraken - R - When Scourge of Fleets enters the battlefield, return each creature you opponents control with toughness X or less to its owner’s hand, where X is the number of Islands you control. 6/6. Calling it now, this is the bomb in Limited, Standard, and Block. Sure it’s a card that forces you into mono-blue, but it’s also a card that can bring mono-blue back into the final feature matches once more.
Dictate of Kruphix - 1UU - Enchantment - R - Flash. At the beginning of each player’s draw step, that player draws an additional card. Oh, Emrakul, they printed that? Need one for my group hung commander deck. The fact this has flash just might be enough for it to be a Standard card so that you make it so you get the first draw with it. Granted, I don’t think we are going to see much of it until after Underworld Connections rotates in October.
Sage of Hours - 1U - Creature - Human Wizard - M - Heroic - Whenever you cast a spell that targets Sage of Hours, put a +1/+1 counter on it. Remove all +1/+1 counters from Sage of Hours: For Each five counters removed this way, take an extra turn after this one. This is so epic in Limited and might just be good enough for some random Commander brews. It’s a super fun card but that means it’s never going to see competitive play. Granted, this is just going to be a fun card to play around with in fun decks.
Crystalline Nautilus - 2U - Enchantment Creature - Nautilus - U - Bestow 3 UU. When Crystalline Nautilus becomes the target of a spell or ability, sacrifice it. Enchanted creature gets +4/+4 and has “When this creature becomes the target of a spell or ability, sacrifice it.” 4/4. Sometimes you just need a 4/4 beater. Getting it for just three mana means it has to have this kind of a draw back.
Extinguish All Hope - 4BB - Sorcery - R - Destroy all nonenchantment creatures. Dang it, I was so hoping this would have been more aggressively costed. Still there have been a number of times I’ve wished I had a sweeper in my mono-black Standard brews. I can see this finding some sideboard love. In limited with everyone playing the Bestow Voltron game this is so janky that it should have been priced at 2BB.
Gnarled Scarhide - B - Enchantment Creature - Minotaur - U - Bestwo 3B. Granled Scarhide can’t block. Enchanted creature gets +2/+1 and can’t block. 2/1. Mono-black aggro seems to be building up new tools. I’m liking this with all the other enchantment creatures it has in it so you can run our new board wipe in the side. Also this gives us more bestow for Tormented Hero which makes this a go to over Rakdos Cackler. Also this is another good beater for Limited.
Squelching Leeches - 2BB - Creature - Leech - U - Squelching Leeches’s power and toughness are each equal to the number of swamps you control. */*. I have to say this is a nice way of making us force ourselves into mono-colored drafting, but I’ll draft how I want to draft thank you.
Doonwake Giant - 4B - Enchantment Creature - Giant - R - Constellation - When Doomwake Giant or another enchantment enters the battlefield under your control, creature your opponents control get -1/-1 until end of turn. 4/6. Okay time to go back to the drawing board to rethink mono-black aggro into mon-black Nyx for Block. Totally wanting to play this deck. Also a bomb for Limited.
Cyclops of Eternal Fury - 4RR - Enchantment Creature - U - Creatures you control have haste. 5/3. Nice Limited filler to bash face with, but nothing to really write home about.
Satyr Hoplite - R - Creature - Satyr Soldier - C - Heroic - Whenever you cast a spell that targets Satyr Hoplite, put a +1/+1 counter on Satyr Hoplite. 1/1. Okay I think we are getting the critical mass for a RDW aggro deck. This on turn one followed up with a turn two Ordeal means you can bash with a 3/3 on turn two, and if you add Madcap Skills you get a 7/4 that needs two blockers on turn three with the ordeals bonus. That’s GG on turn four with removal.
Spawn of Thraxes - 5RR - Creature - Dragon - R - Flying. When Spawn of Thraxes enters the battlefield, it deals damage to target creature or player equal to the number of Mountains you control. 5/5. I really think we are eitehr getting prepped for a dry spell of mana fixing, or getting pushed into drafting mono-colors. I mean if I see this in pack-one I’m going to be very tempted to force mono-red in draft. Just being able to nuke a creature for 7, or sending that to your opponent’s face to finish out the game makes this a total bomb when drafting mono-red.
Dictate of the Twin Gods - 3RR - Enchantment - R - Flash. If a source would deal damage to a permanent or player, it deals double that damage to that permanent or player instead. Wait, hang on... I’m reading the flavor text.... Iroas and Mogis are twins?! Okay, for the real thoughts on the card. This might just see some play in the RDW deck I want to build. I have so many dreams of massive damage. Satyr Firedancer gets even better with this and Searing Blood. That combo means 4 to the first creature, six to the player, then another 12 to a second creature. It’s like a volleyball of hellfire.
Mogis’s Warhound - 1R - Enchantment Creature - Hound - U - Bestow 2R. Mogis’s Warhound attack each turn if able. Enchanted creature gets +2/+2 and attacks each turn if able. 2/2. Yup another good bestow dork to beat face with in Limited.
Eidolon of the great Revel - RR - Enchantment Creature - Spirit - R - Whenever a player cast a spell or converted mana cost 3 or less, Eidolon of the Great Revel deals 2 damage to that player. 2/2. Pryostatic Pillar on a bear. Wow, Modern Burn is starting to look a lot like Legacy Burn. Also with the aggro decks that might be coming when we hit rotation, means this might just find homes in a number of sideboards all over the formats.
Eidolon of Blossoms - 2GG - Enchantment Creature - Spirit- R - Constellation - Whenever Eidolon of Blossoms or another enchantment enters the battlefield under your control, draw a card. 2/2. This basically makes itself and all other enchantments into card draw which is cool, but I don’t think it will break any formats. I see this as just a good card for Limited. We just don’t have enough green enchantment mass in any other format to make this work. The only decks that would run this are the same ones that already use Garruk as it’s draw engine.
Heroes’ Bane - 3GG - Creature - Hydra - R - Heroes’ Bane enters the battlefield with four +1/+1 counters on it. 2GG: Put X +1/+1 counters on Heroes’ Bane, where X is its power. 0/0. It seems that green has to have a hydra that gets huge fast just like red has to have a flavorful dragon. Still this is a bomb in Limited. Just keeps getting bigger and bigger and forcing blockers and removal till you grind the game out with it.
Ravenous Leucrocota - 3G - Creature - Beast - C - Vigilance. 6G: Monstrosity 3. 2/4. Speaking of big dumb beaters for green in Limited. Not as powerful and fast as the hydra this still needs to be answered before it turns into a 5/7.
Spirespine - 2G - Enchantment Creature - Beast - U - Bestow 4G. Spirespine blocks each turn if able. Enchanted creature gets +4/+1 and blocks each turn if able. 4/1. That has to be the worst draw back i have ever seen on a three mana 4/x in the history of Magic. Sure it should be able to eat just about any early game creature, but later you better be bestowing this on an attacker. Hmm, maybe that’s the reason for this, to teach new players to hold back some creatures for later. So we get a teaching card that is some what good for Limited.
Setessan Tactics - 1G - Instant - R - Strive - Setessian Tactics costs G more to cast for each target beyond the first. Any number of target creatures each get +1/+1 and gain “Tap: Fight another target creature.” Have to say this is the trump of combat tricks in Limited. It’s got a really cheap Strive cost, and with Archtype of Finality or Bow of Nylea in play this can blow out Limited games. If the Bow becomes popular in constructed than this might just become a sideboard friend.
Iroas, God of Victory - 2RW - Legendary Enchantment Creature - God - M - Indestructible. AS long as your devotion to red and white is less than seven, Iroas isn’t a creature. Creatures you control can’t be blocked except by two or more creatures. Prevent all damage that would be dealt to attacking creatures you control. 7/4. So Boros aggro is going to be a thing for the next year in Standard. Two of these are so going to just drop into the deck so you can bash face all day.
Underworld Coinsmith - WB - Enchantment Creature - Human Cleric - U - Constellation - Whenever Underworld Coinsmith or an enchantment enters the battlefield under your control, you gain 1 life. WB, pay 1 life: Each opponent loses 1 life. 2/2. If only this said that your opponents lost 1 life as part of the Constellation ability. Then I would so try to break this with some kind of Egg style deck. Still, it’s a cool life gain trick for Limited.
Keranos, God of Storms - 3UR - Legendary Enchantment Creature - God - M - Indestructible. As long as your devotion to blue and red is less than seven, Keranos isn’t a creature. Reveal the first card you draw on each of your turns. Whenever you reveal a land card this way, draw a card. Whenever you reveal a nonland card this way, Keranos deals 3 damage to target creature or player. 6/5. Sorry Ral, but you have been replaced in Maze’s End. I need two of these and fast. I just hope the rest of the enemy colored gods are as good and Iroas and Keranos, because I want to see a meta game that faces Izzet, Boros, Golgari, Orzhov , and Simic decks against each others. Even in an Izzet deck this is starting to make me want to cast blue and red cast together next standard season. Just the card advantage and free damage alone is like mana from Nyx.
Ajani, Mentor of Heroes - 3GW - Planeswalker - Ajani - M - +1: Distribute three +1/+1 counters among one, two, or three target creatures you control. +1: Look at the top four cards of your library. You may reveal an aura, creature, or planeswalker card from among them and put that card into your hand. Put the rest on the bottom of your library in any order. -8: You gain 100 life. Starting loyalty 4. So I get to make his defense stronger or dig for more defence, and if you can’t kill him before I get him to 8, or 9, I basically win the game. Yeah, that -8 ability is going to win so many MTGO Limited games by grinding out the clock. Still I think this isn’t going to see much competitive play simply because of mono-black packing Hero’s Downfall, also Deadbore is starting to see more play too. Once we get past rotation this might jump into Standard play as long as Hero’s DF is the only good planeswalker hate card.
Temple of Epiphany and Temple of Malady - The last of the scry lands are here and I totally agree with the name Epiphany for the Izzet one but Golgari so should have been the Temple of Rot.
Over all I’m thinking this set is going to be a very close to a five-out-of-five stars. I’ll be posting the the full set-reviews once the all the other cards have been spoiled, so don’t forget to subscribe to get a notice when those go live. Until those articles go up these are my first thoughts on Journy to Nyx. See you all at the end of the month for the full reviews.
This has been...
Jeffrey Carmichael II
KDPfenthing on MTGO
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