Hello awesome folks! I hope your day is going as awesomely as you are! Today I want to finish my deep dive into the best cards from Streets of New Capenna. We've done three articles previously with a few cycles and two extra honorable mentions. Today we'll finish this deep set of fun times. To make this list you need to be good in kitchen table play like multiplayer, Commander, Highlander, Five Color, Type Four, and other formats.
This is my final set:
First, I wrote up my top slate of cards which you can find here. which includes an uncommon hitting #2 (and would have been a breakaway #1 in a normal set without the three basic land cycle).
Secondly, I wrote up 10 and two honorable mentions like another planeswalker, two leaders of families, and then two spicey uncommons hitting in my top three overall. We even have a mass removal spell here to frump around with. You can see my list here!
Thirdly, I wrote up a rare cycle and a bunch of cards with various powers and abilities and rarities here. We include a common aura, two Demon leaders of families, a ramper of lands, a piece of equipment and a mass Treasure maker. Check it out!
Here is my final list!
Honorable Mention #1 (#48 Overall) - Giada, Font of Hope
This Standard legal 2-drop 2/2 with flying and vigilance has already pushed Angel decks past the point of playabilty from things like Kaldheim and a certain Orzhov Angel from our recent return to Innistrad. This legendary mono-White dork can give your other Angels an extra +1/+1 counter on arrival to the battlefield for each Angel you control, which will always be at least two for it and her. And you can tap her to make a white to cast Angels.
She's quite good leading an Angels Tribal deck in Commander and already has a massive 1,113 decks registered over at EDHREC.com which is crazy since she is in the least played and loved color in the format. She's already the seventh-highest played mono-White Commander and will likely grow quite quickly. She already has hundreds more decks than the previous mono-white Angel loving Commander Lyra Dawnbringer at 885. Nice stuff Giada!
Honorable Mention #2 (#47 Overall) - All-Seeing Arbiter
This flying Avatar costs 6 mana for a smaller 5/4. On arrival to the party (or when it swings) you can draw two and discard one, which is great card flow over time, and the flying is a nice tether to the attack trigger to keep up the card flow. As you discard stuff, you can drop a foe's power by X where X is your mana values in your graveyard which fits that draft archetype. Its discard works well in Dimir reanimator builds, Grixis madness builds, flashback heavy stuff, Izzet jumpstart, and more. It also is just fine card flow with the ETB trigger getting flickering or solid in a mid-range brew or good in saboteur builds that want to swing for things. It's very flexible and just one more mana than a Mulldrifter for +3/+2 and the attack trigger, which seems worth it, but most players are dropping casting costs in Commander so the value drops there. I like it in multiplayer and other kitchen table places quite a lot.
#10. (#46 Overall) - Sanctuary Warden
Another mythic five-power flyer! The Warden is a fun dork with two abilities. The first is to arrival to the battlefield with two shield counters, which is nice protection for a bit of time from targeting to damage taken. Also note that this can remove counters from a dork or planeswalker to both draw a card and make a 1/1 dork. That happens on arrival and when it swings. Card draw that reliable in mono-White? Sweet!
It loves decks with counters to trade, like +1/+1 counter decks, the Bant and Azorius counters-matter builds that were added to the game in this set and Commander set of cards, and then the loyalty counters of a planeswalker brew which would love to trade a single loyalty for both a card and a blocker. Even on a naked board post-Wrath of God, you can swap it's shield counters for cards. Like the previous card, it's also very synergetic!
#9. (#45 Overall) Structural Assault
Mass artifact sweepers cost four mana (Creeping Corrosion; Shatterstorm) so getting a powerful version for one more mana is pretty nifty. After sweeping artifacts, you then shoot dorks equal to the destroyed artifact count. In today's Treasure/Clue/Blood/Food metagame that could be quite a bit of damage in addition to Simulacrums and mana rocks. You can also answer artifact powerhouses like Skullclamp, Mind's Eye and Umezawa's Jitte. It's a nice break on a commonly played permanent type at the multiplayer and could really punish dorks as well. Nice mass removal spell, but something like this can be a bit of a feel bad moment as the mana screwed deck leaning on its mana rocks to play the game won't be happy. Nice!
#8. (#44 Overall) - Night Clubber
Three mana for a 2/2 that will force a -1/-1 on creatures - that's a lot of dorks that will just die like mana makers Birds of Paradise and Llanowar Elves, heavily played Esper Sentinel and Mother of Runes and Goblin Welder and Viscera Seer. And then you can blitz it for its ability from nowhere and it gains haste, gets sacrificed, and you'll draw a card. It's strong as an adjunct to your removal section in things like Rakdos midrange, blink, reanimation, Orzhov small powers and cheap costs matter, and loads more places! Love it loads!
#7. (#43 Overall) - The Exile Common Land Mod Cycle
I love this slate of five common three-color dorks. Each of them is in the three friendly colors of a a central option, just like a Shard. They can be played and used quite ably. They have decent bodies for mid-costs with nice abilities tacked on. Then they can be self-exiled from your hand for 2 mana and give a land you control the ability to tap for those three colors making this an unusual version of basic landcycling. Each of these exiles are just two colorless mana so if you are mana screwed from one or two colors you can use this to unscrew yourself. The exiling is not a search so it won't take your time. I really like this in the non-green color options which don't have much in the way of ramp. In Commander, due to color idenity, they really can only be played in those three color brews, but there they really shine. This is the last cycle to chart...
#6. (#42 Overall) Inspiring Overseer
This fun common is better than a card I really like and play sometimes in Blue called Cloudkin Seer. Both are 2/1 flyers for three mana to swing over folks' heads, and both will give you a card on arrival. This one will give you a life, and the Seer nothing. I lean on the quarter-costing Seer for my budget brews and other synergetic shells, and this will be even better there. This Angel is making the cut in Standard right now in Angel decks. It's also good in flying decks needing a flyer, blink decks needing a body to blink for card growth, life gain decks looking for ways to not sacrifice card flow for life gain, and loads more. Enjoy this fun quarter common a lot!
Top Five Time!
#5. (#41 Overall) - Halo Fountain
This three-mana artifact is already making the cut in a Standard deck called Azorius Halo that wins with it. It does a lot, and is repeatable card flow in White. Then you can tap an amazing five mana and untap 15 dorks to win the game. Just drop this in the pre-combat phase, swing, and then untap and win out of nowhere. Nice win con and very synergetic in token and going wide brews. There is a Green win-con called Epic Struggle that wins if you control 20 or more dorks in your upkeep so it gives a turn for folks to answer it and it needs 5 more dorks. I like them both together in one brew since Selesnya loves going wide with tokens. I have run this in a Naya Commander build. (It's here). Nice card!
#4. (#40 Overall) - Undercover Operative
Hitting atanice even number 4 and number 40 is this 4 drop Shapeshifter Rogue. You can have this dork arrive to the battlefield as a copy of any dork. Then you can put a shield counter on it if you controlled the copied dork. It's a bit harder to cast than Clone proper, but better in ability with the shield counter so that makes sense. This is great in decks where you are looking to up a key dork that you don't have that many of. It's also good in Clone tribal that seeks to get your best opposing dork, or to copy your Commander partner twinned with Sakashima of a Thousand Faces. Good stuff out there since it's a pretty solid entry into the Clone Country. Nice!
We have left three cards and three rarities of the options...ready?
#3. (#39 Overall) - Devilish Valet
This 3-drop 1/3 features both haste and trample, nice! Whenever another dork arrives to the battlefield under your control (including tokens) you can double the Valet's power. Two dorks is a 4/3. Three is an 8/3. Four from something like Release the Hounds is a 16/3. That's a one hit kill in most decks and costs just one more mana than Valet and will trample over other dorks and you are left with 4 1/1s and 1 1/3 for the last turn. Nasty stuff in Boros and Naya tokens as well as other go-wide dorks. Note that this is better in 20 life formats than Commander since dealing 4 or 8 on your token making isn't as scalable, but it's still fine in dedicated token decks. For example, getting a five dork Deranged Hermit or Increasing Devotion is a 32/3 with trample. Nice.
#2. (#38 Overall) - Falco Spara, Pactweaver
Our second-highest scoring green card and highest scoring mythic and Demon Lord is Falco! This 3/3 flyer with trample is on curve and when it arrives you give it a shield counter. You can look at the top card of your library any time you wish, and you can cast it by removing a counter from a dork and then it's normal cost. It leads a brand-new archetype in Bant, counters matter. Note that you cannot "play" the card just cast it, so a land blocks you, which is a lot worse than you might think given the high number of lands in decks. It's nice and gives you a solid place to play from and you can remove its shield counter to cast one spell from our library and get some card equity before the Weaver of Pacts dies. And it has a nicely sized 638 decks over at EDHREC.com which is pretty nice and welcoming for a new archetype this fast! To be fair, here is where the other Demon leaders are, in alpha order:
Jetmir, Nexus of Revels - 1232
Lord Xander, the Collector - 678
Raffine, Scheming Seer - 1005
Ziatora, the Incinerator - 938
So, despite Falco being in arguably the most popular three-color friend color combo (the most popular two-color combo is Simic and this is the only three color Shard that uses both and adds in White's mass removal and cards like Swords to Plowshares and Esper Sentinel and Smothering Tithe), the fewest decks are around Falco, hence it hitting here. But's not bad at all, and has a nice new archetype to lead! Good stuff!
One card left!
#1. (#37 Overall) Mr. Orfeo, the Boulder
Everyone's favorite four drop uncommon draft around legendary Rhino Warrior is this Jund dork. Love it loads! Unlike the Demons, this is very strong, not only Ieading a Commander deck but in the 99 of a Jund deck. When you attack (not just with this) double a target creature's power. Note that it does not have to target an attacking dork, so in a power-matters brew with something like Spikeshot Goblin that deals damage equal to its power to any target you can double it and deal some serious damage. See also Spikeshot Elder.
This is Green, so doubling the power of a dork and then fighting can help you end the life of a much bigger dork. Drop this prior to your combat phase step and then get to double your attacker. With a Commander of some size, you'll kill in half of the Commander Damage hits, like Darigaaz the Igniter. Mr. Orfeo is a very strong Voltron leader, and he really loves getting combined with double strike. He's a fun dork to add to our Commander Canon. Welcome!
And there we go! What did you think of my final list? Anything that I missed or got in the wrong order? Just let me know! Next week we'll look at my favorite cards from Streets of New Capenna's Commander set.