Hello all! Wow I hope you are having an awesomely awesome day today! And that tomorrow is even moreso for you!
Welcome back to my second edition of five articles I am giving you of my top 55 (including one honorable mention in each set) cards from this deep set! Ready for the beginning of the fun times for you? I hope so! Today we look at #22 - #12 inclusive.
The first week I brought to you my Top Ten Cards from Strixhaven for the entire set, #11 - #1! That was a lot of the best cards from the entire set for casual kitchen table play including Commander. My top card in the set was a common, the first time that has happened in years. Check it out here!
Ready for my cards today?
Let's do it to it!
Honorable Mention: 22. Mavinda, Students' Advocate
Are you a fan of casting an instant or sorcery more than once in a game? Do you wish that all your spells had flashback? Well, do I have the card for you! Say hello to Mavinda the Counselor of Students at the academy of Strixhaven.
Look at this Wind Drake. Flying? Awesome. Just 3 mana? Awesome. 2/3 body which is on curve? Awesome. A 0 ability to recast something from your graveyard once/turn and then exile it? Awesome. If you self-target one of your dorks you don't pay anything else? Awesome. Now note that there is an eight-mana tax that keeps you from breaking it. It works better in decks that have lots of self-targeting love, and I just used it in a key Commander deck I built around Killian, Ink Duelist which you can find here. It's also a fun Commander option on its own. That tax keeps it from hitting too highly but any boat in a storm is welcome and given the love of ramp in Commander that tax seems more like a speed bump to prevent abuse than outright traffic barriers to stop you in your tracks.
All right now let's look at my top ten cards proper.
21. Reduce to Memory
Know what this card reminds me of? Generous Gift! However, it's a sorcery speed and only hits non-lands. However, it has two advantages over the Gift. First, it only gives an easier-to-kill 3/2 Spirit rather than the bigger 3/3 Elephant. Secondly, do you see it? It exiles the target, not destroys. That gets around indestructible cards and answers like Rootborn Defenses. And it's a Lesson that you can learn! Which is better? They both have advantages and disadvantages, but this Lesson can be played alongside the Gift in Commander decks that seek out flexible removal like these.
20. Solve the Equation
Do you like searching for an instant or sorcery but you hate the card disadvantage of Mystical Tutor? No problems! Welcome to your new best friend! This bad boy is just two more mana and gives you the card immediately, and trades sorcery for instant. It gives you two spells that will trigger things like Guttersnipe in your Izzet Spellslinger decks. It's really good! Like really really good. Better than that! Really good! This is our highest charting card which is not rare or mythic rare.
19. Mila, Crafty Companion // Lukk, Wayward Bonder
Take a gander at this fun pair! The former can toss loyalty counters as people bring the heat to them which can help keep them alive from traditional removal. Whenever a foe targets any permanent of yours with a spell or an ability you draw a sweet card! Maze of Ith my attacker? Card! Exile my precious Commander with a Swords to Plowshares? Card! Destroy my Lightning Greaves with your Vindicate? Card! Take out my Sylvan Library with your Hull Breach? Card! Steal my Sol Ring with your Dack Fayden? Card! You get a lot of cards over the time, and this is a great Boros option as a Commander.
The latter card is pretty good as well! Six mana for a five-loyalty Lukka. The +1 to turn a discard into a draw and two cards if it was a dork is pretty good with card flow and plays well with discarding and graveyard-based synergies. The -2 can Resurrection a creature back and it gets haste but it self-exiles afterwards. But it stays around for a full cycle of turns. Note that if it's not in play it cannot be exiled, so if you bounce it or sacrifice it for an effect, you'll be able to reuse it. It's +1 and -2 also work well together as one discards a dork and draws two and the other takes said dork and puts on the battlefield for a turn. Like I said, a fun pair!
18. Ecological Appreciation
Hello fans of X spells! This spell lets you grab four dorks with different names and converted mana cost of X or less and show them to the table. Oohs and aahs will follow. One foe (note the lack of targeting so you can cast this when everyone else has hexproof) chooses two of the cards you tutored for. Those heads to your library and the others? To the battlefield! Nice ramp there!
In a Commander build the restriction of just one name is easy to manage and this will love decks thick with dorks. It's a reverse Tooth and Nail! Commander players have built-in redundance into your build! Need to take out an annoying artifact or enchantment? Grab Acidic Slime and Reclamation Sage and Rambunctious Mutt! Need to take out a painful dork? Grab Duplicant, Shriekmaw and Ravenous Chupacabra! From four land rampers to four game winners, your decklists are deep so grab the best options for the battlefield! The fact that the opponent leans into the decision makes this hit back at #18 in my list, but you can see the value here, right?
17. Rowan, Scholar of Sparks // Will, Scholar of Frost
At #17 are the Kenriths who share a planeswalker spark between them. Rowan is the front side with her cheaper 3 mana side that nets you a +1 to shoot foes for 1 and if you drew three cards then for three damage. She doesn't have a lot of loyalty so watch out. On the back side, Will can +1 to turn a dork into a 0/2 for a full round of turns, which can keep him alive and his -3 can draw you two cards but he can only do it once with his starting four loyalty on 5 mana. Each of them can drop your instants and sorceries by a generic mana each which helps to show what deck you'll toss the Kenriths into! Enjoy them!
Top 5 time!
16. Blot Out the Sky
Do you know what card Blot Out the Sky reminded me of when I read it in the spoiler? Martial Coup! That's a very powerful two-mana X-spell token maker! However, Blot Out the Sky makes 2/1 flyers rather than 1/1 Soldiers. Now for the Coup, they need an X of five or more to destroy other dorks and for the Blot they need an X of six or more to wipe out non-lands and non-creatures so what they wipe is different. That's where the similarities here end! Martial Coup is registered in 8,780 decks over at EDHREC.com. That's great context for Blot Out the Sky!
15. Multiple Choice
This is one of my favorite Charms ever printed! Even though it isn't a Charm, technically. I love that it's very flexible and can suit the situation. Just have 2 mana early and looking for another land? Scry 1 and draw like an Opt. Early in the game and you need to bounce a dork that someone has? Tap 3 mana and bounce away! Need to make a 4/4 token of your own for 4 mana which is on curve? Just thing, tap and make an X of three. Got an extra mana? Awesome! You get to do them all in order!
- Scry 1.
- Draw a card.
- Bounce a creature.
- Make a 4/4 dork.
Total cost - 5 mana. Nice right? Right! I'd love to see more X spells like this one!
Three cards left!
14. Galazeth Prismari
Elder Dragons are cool! The entire EDH format was named after them! I adore Galazeth Prismari, the founder of the Prismari school so much that I called it and built my first Strixhaven deck around it for you folks! What I did was build around his artifact turning into Manaliths for instants and sorceries and went wide with artifacts and big with those spells. I ran cards like Expropriate and Insurrection for you to pound out there with stuff like Treasure Tokens and 1/1 artifact dorks from planeswalkers. Check it out!
13. Witherbloom Command
Our penultimate card in today's countdown is our lone Command in today's list! Let's look! For just 2 mana you get two of four fine abilities. Sorcery speed keeps it from cracking my top ten list last week. You can have someone, (or yourself) mill three and then return a land to the hand from your graveyard. You'll likely want to mill yourself to give you more options. You can destroy any non-creature or non-land that costs two or fewer mana, which includes pretty much any token like Treasures, Clues, or Gold. It can -3/-1 a dork for a turn, which will kill any X/1's out there. It can also Syphon Soul a single person. It's better the older the card format and in Vintage where takes out Moxes and Sol Ring with aplomb it's better. Its great at the kitchen table where it's often a two-for-one answering a dork, replacing itself with a land and destroying something. I just wish it was instant speed, and I'd willingly pay for that option! Enjoy it!
What card hit #1 in today's list and clocked in at #11 overall?
12. Professor Onyx
Welcome to the latest version of Liliana! Her Magecraft is really nifty as she turns any sorcery, instant, or copy thereof into a Syphon Soul effect that can close out games or give you time to close out games with the lifegain. Her +1 to dig and draw is pretty good and works well with graveyard-based synergies. Her -3 to force foes to sacrifice the highest power critter they control is great and leaps past annoying dorks that have hexproof and/or indestructible. She begins with a nice five loyalty. She's great and my top card in today's list!
And there we are! What did you think of my list? Am I missing anything? Wrong order? Just let me know!