Hi Everyone! This week I want to go over a few of the more tasty spoilers that we have seen in DGM. This is written Sunday night (4/21) before the full spoiler of the set goes up, so bear with me if I don’t include some stellar card that has yet to be released.
Notion Thief is what I have been calling Snapcaster’s step brother. While this card isn’t the power house that Snapcaster is, he’ll definitely see play. In any Esper deck, he steals the game in both the mirror and against a Jund match up, negating their card advantage from Garruk. Being a 4 drop, I cannot see him being viable as a main deck just yet. There are too many aggro decks out there for a blue deck to spend their turn for flashing in a blocker that immediately dies. Look for him to be in any Esper sideboard though.
Ah, now here is a card that is going to see mainboard love from Jund. Putrefy removes the necessity for the outlying murder or two that Jund plays, as it is a strictly better form of removal. Not being able to regenerate will do alot against the outlying Lotleth Trolls and Wolfir Avengers. Being able to hit an artifact means that Jund no longer has to go to their sideboard to take out a Witchbane Orb. It is not however, a replacement for Abrupt Decay, as that is uncounterable, and better against Aggro being a two drop. Dreadbore is a bit tougher to compare since it is a sorcery, but again, being a two drop vs. three can mean all the difference in the world when the Naya Blitz deck is on the play.
Voice of Resurgence is something I am up in the air about. It is obviously a very playable card. Getting a 2/2 for two that more than likely replaces itself is nothing but value. The fact that you have a good chance at generating 2-3 extra creatures from an opponent’s Think Twice or Grisly Salvage is just icing on the cake. My dillema is this, what deck does this go in? Obviously we are looking at an aggro deck, looking to get the most out of it’s low cost and free creatures, but the arguable best deck for this, Naya Blitz, places a lot of it’s reliance on Champion of the Parish to keep stacking up, which this card does not help with. I know this card will see play, I simply have not sit down to come up with the deck/shell that will utilize it yet.
The previous cards are all easy calls, this one however, is total speculation on my part. I think Obzedat’s Aid will bring around a new Esper Reanimator deck that will be a force to be reckoned with. Esper Reanimator was already an option, with enough graveyard frill from Liliana and Forbidden alchemy to make a turn 4 or 5 Grizelbrand using Unburial Rites a real possibility. But this is something different. Can you imagine trying to deal with a turn five Omniscience? This card opens up some very real possibilities in the realm of control that I am very excited to try out. Worst case scenario this card will give Junk Right’s an extra reanimate spell should the player be dedicated to the graveyard strategy.
For those of you looking to go for the Biovisionary win with this let me stop you right there, that still won’t work for the same reason it doesn’t work currently. That being that he does not effect the board when he comes into play. Yes this essentially gives you 4 more copies of him in the deck, but all that means is that you are taking away 4 ways to protect him that you need in the first place. The only real threat with this will be in the current Bant lists running about. Getting a free Thragtusk or Angel of Serenity every turn forces your opponent to have an answer immediately, or die. While a 6 mana Thragtusk might not be the most optimal, Bant decks have usually gotten out a Farseek or two to be able to get Mimic out on turn 5 anyway, making this card very efficient. I am not 100% sold on it, but I see that it has potential.
Last one and this one is going to be quick. I am sure everyone sees the value in this card. Getting around any sort of removal, from Devour Flesh to Supreme Verdict, makes the card almost playable by itself, let a lone the anthem to its colors. The fact that you can force a non-haste creature to attack the turn it came out for an extra two mana, while not the most optimal thing in the world, can mean the difference between a loss and a win. The real reason I am mentioning this card is to bring to light a small tidbit of info I realized and wanted to make sure everyone else did too. When used in conjunction with Aurelia, the Warleader, you can get three combat phases in that turn. For those unclear on Aurelia’s wording see below.
“Whenever Aurelia, the Warleader attacks for the first time each turn, untap all creatures you control. After this phase, there is an additional combat phase.”
So the play is: Play Aurelia, swing with whatever you choose. After attacks you have another combat phase. Before you take it you activate Legion’s Initiative, returning all creatures at the beginning of combat phase number two. Since Aurelia left the battlefield and came back in, she is considered a new Aurelia, and this will be the first time she attacked this turn, giving you one more combat phase for a total of 3. You can do this for as many copies of Legion’s Initiative you have on the field (take care for Detention Spheres if you decide to try this).
So that is my quick round up on some sure fire constructed power houses, some more speculative ideas, and some interesting interactions. As always, feel free to comment or email with any questions or suggestions!