Hello awesome folks! I hope your day is going super mega well!!!! Today I have reviewed the spoiler and we are going to be counting down the best cards from Wilds of Eldraine for casual kitchen table formats like Commander, Highlander, multiplayer, Five Color and Type Four. My top card will be the unusual uncommon, but which one? We'll be looking at my Top Ten cards plus three Honorable Mentions, ready for my list?
Honorable Mention #1 (#13 Overall) - Beseech the Mirror
I got your new tutor right here. For a harder to cast but same total mana as Diabolic Tutor you get a sorcery that puts it into exile and draws it if you didn't bargain. If you did bargain and sacrifice an artifact, enchantment or token of some sort you'll cast it for free if its mana value was four or less.
You'll have loads of new tokens to sacrifice in token brews like Zombie Tokens. Generic tokens are the seventh-most played archetype in Commander. And then you'll have fuel with Food which counts as both artifacts and tokens, Treasure decks, Clues, Orzhov Tokens, and more. And then you can sacrifice artifact in decks with death triggers like Solemn Simulacrum or Ichor Wellspring. You could toss into an equipment brew that includes this to fetch out an equipment and drop it for free with a cost of 4 or less or an enabler. You could also run this in either Aura-matters or enchantment-matters brews, the 12th and 14th biggest archetypes. See how strong this thing can be? I also love this in combo decks where you drop one half after tutoring for it if it costs the right mana. And even without the sacrifice you still have a four cost Diabolic Tutor that just searches out something as the worst-case scenario. Next is an adventure card, but which one?
Honorable Mention #2 (#12 Overall) - Bramble Familiar
The Familiar is making the cut for casual and Fetch Quest is making the cut for Type Four, so they are both elevating it to here. The Familiar will accelerate you in the early game and then later swing as a two-power dork instead of the traditional one. Casting this on turn 2 will drop a four-mana Commander on turn 3, although most Commander players would prefer that to be Rampant Growth.
A two-drop mana ramper often makes the cut in Standard too, by the by. Then you can cast Fetch Quest for seven mana later. This will mill seven cards and then Zombify a creature, enchantment or land into the battlefield from the milled set. Many times, when you topdeck a ramp spell or mana rock or mana dork later in the game, it's past it's sell by date and cannot, but if you top deck Fetch Quest? That's very strong here.
Why do I love this for Type Four? That format has infinite mana of any type, but is limited to just one spell per turn, barring an alternate cost being paid like Force of Will. That means that you can cast Fetch Quest on the first turn in that format. Please note that adventure spells are not "alternate costs" they are just another spell, so you cannot get both for free. I also love the milling of a lot to fill up your graveyard with stuff later on. I hope you can see why this synergetic and awesome card in multiple formats and good early or late game is here. Our final Honorable Mention is a throwback to a cycle of cards from way back in Invasion that was also heavily played at the kitchen table!
Honorable Mention #3 (#11 Overall) - Asinine Antics
The cycle I was referring to above was rare sorceries that could be cast at instant speed with two more mana and the Classics still played are Rout and Twilight's Call. This costs four base and then six when the extra two mana is played. All of your opposing critters become 1/1s with a Cursed Role on them. They still have their abilities, they are just 1/1s. Do this at instant speed when attacked to drop the damage you'll take this turn to minor heights. Also, if they get another role, they'll die so that'll shut down those from getting played.
In multiplayer, this is a house with the many creatures that get played by your foes. It's scales up there. Then it's great when you've attacked with normal size dorks, they block to trade with your stuff or kill some, and then you cast this and make them all 1/1 and blow them out. It's the first time we've seen this ability printed like this in spell form that can be cast instantly, and not targeting one dork like Diminish. This is a great tool in many shells. I love it alongside life gain from attacks like Orim's Prayer or the Command Zone eligible Patron of the Kitsune that will gain life for your attackers equal to their number. There is very strong power here with this sorcery castable as an instant!
#10. Rowan, Scion of War AND Will, Scion of Peace
Check out this twin pair that are designed to mirror each other. They each cost three, have 6 total power and toughness in 4s and 2s, they have one keyword and a tap ability that doesn't cost anything to use like mana or discards to drop your cost of their colors' spells by colorless at sorcery speed by either life lost or gained this turn. They are both very strong here at playing the long game.
In Commander, Rowan is better in some ways as the Commander since life lost this turn is easier to pay for free with things like Phyrexian mana costs or cycling Street Wraith. With a four power three drop she is more powerful at getting in Commander damage kills as we'd prefer a four power to a four toughness and her evergreen ability is evasion so she can slip through some defenses. She's also in the color of haste enablers in red so she can easily tap the turn you drop her to lose that life and cast some stuff for cheap. Remember that life loss can come from mana accelerants like Ancient Tomb as a land or the coin flip loss on Mana Crypt. And you are in the color of burn spells like Comet Storm or Jaya's Immolating Inferno or Exsanguinate effects to turn life loss into kills fast along with fast mana makers like Ritual effects in your colors. And Black is the color of mass X spell discards like Mind Twist. So, I think that Rowan is the more powerful twin.
But Will is likely to be more popular. He has vigilance. He can attack without tapping and then use his tap ability in the second main phase. He can play with lifelink to gain a bunch of life for attackers and then tap for it post-combat to make cheap stuff without spending any mana at all to get started. Blue is the color of mass draw, so you can make a bunch of cards drawn for Stroke of Genius. And then, life gain? It's much more popular in Commander than life loss - it's the third most-played archetype. The most played lifegain Commander is Leisa, Shroud of Dusk, which is very different from Greven, or others like Esper Oloro.
#9. Ogre Chitterlord
Six mana? Check! 6 power? Check! Evergreen ability? Check! Evasive rather than the meaningless on a 6-power dork deathtouch? Check! When it ETBS make two token creatures that are not of your type? (Grave Titan made Zombies, but was a Giant) Check! Are they made when you ETB and attack? Check!!! These are just 1/1s and cannot block, but once you control five Rats total, all Rats get +2/+0 that turn, so this can kill faster with 3/1s not 2/2s after a while. And that's just five Rats total, and then counts all Rats in the pump, so this works well with Rat tokens and tribal cards, or just on its own. The only issues here are that the Rats cannot block, and this has one fewer toughness at five. I prefer this to the Titan in most cases outside of Zombie decks or, you know, if you don't have red in your color identity, or in a Superfriends deck where you need blockers for your planeswalkers. That's pretty much it, and they work well in the same deck too, Rakdos tokens, or add the classic token carer of White to that. Just swapping menace for deathtouch alone makes this way better.
#8. Hylda of the Icy Crown with a shout out to Sharae of Numbing Depths
Another legendary Azorius Commander! Hylda is also our penultimate scoring Commander eligible dork. She costs four for a 3/4. When you tap an untapped creature that a foe controlled, you can spend one mana to scry 2 and draw; make a 4/4 sized token; or put a +1/+1 counter on all of your stuff. I suspect you'll normally choose the dork to win or the cards to draw. Note that other than the colorless mana spent, there are no other costs here like tapping or once per turn or only on your turn. As long as you're tapping untapped stuff, you can spend mana and choose from those options. Tapping-matters isn't an archetype that has existed before, so it's new fresh territory to explore. Adding it to Azorius makes sense since White taps things and Blue untaps with Vizier of Tumbling Sands. Love this addition to the canon of Commander stuff! And shoutout to Sharae, which is very powerful in its own right!
#7. Lich-Knights' Conquest
Hitting roughly halfway in our countdown is this Black splashable five-cost sorcery. When it resolves you can bargain any number of tokens, artifacts and/or enchantments. Then you can Zombify that many critters from your graveyard to your battlefield, so this is great after a mass removal spell or in a deck with a milling or graveyard centric theme which we've looked at earlier with Beseech the Mirror that works in so many decks and infrastructure.
I also like in in self-mill decks like Golgari with Fetch Quest above or Dimir with Hedron Crab. I also love this in sacrifice decks since bargains count as sacrifices so you can net a bunch of triggers to things like Rakdos's Mayhem Devil. I also like this in reanimation brews. Because it basically bargains better than Beseech the Mirror and is in that color too, this is better and since its mass sacrifices and mass recursion are better for those same archetypes but many more. Love this thing loads! Next is a going wide game winner in white. But what?
#6. Craterhoof Behemoth...er...um...Moonshaker Cavalry
The most played Green win con for go-wide decks is color shifted to White. The Behemoth is in a massive 94,962 Green decks on EDHREC. Both cost eight mana, three of it their color. Both have an eternal keyword. When they ETB, they give your team and themselves power and toughness boosts equal to your creature count and an evasive keyword. Craterhoof gives trample so it cannot be chump blocked, and the new one gives flying.
The Behemoth has haste to swing on the turn it arrives, and the Cavalry has flying permanently, so it's always evasive. It's also a bigger 6/6. The Cavalry is usually better in the same go-wide decks that involve its colors like Boros Aggro, Orzhov Tokens and you can use them both in Selesnya decks. I also like this in Azorius Flyers with evasive aggro beaters like Judge's Familiar that you can now win with in one hit unlike the beefier Green stuff which is a faster kill. Note that this is a Spirit and Knight in colors that care about both of those types.
Next is our Top Five, and we have one legendary creature, one sorcery, one planeswalker, one enchantment and one instant, so one of each of five things, but which ones? Let's find out together!
#5. Faerie Slumber Party
Another mono-Blue sorcery! This one always costs six and cannot be instanted for more. Then you bounce all dorks to all hands, so it's an Evacuation for one more mana. Then you make two 1/1 flying dorks afterwords, so it's Kirtar's Wrath with threshold, only everyone can slowly over time recast their things if they weren't tokens. Its tempo tethered to removal tethered to you netting two flying beaters. Nice right? I think so too, and then we also net some fun card advantage from your foes as they often may have to discard if too many dorks were bounced and your decks in blue that want this are often pretty creature light. It's strong from where I am sitting. Next is the legendary creature!
#4. Agatha of the Vile Cauldron
This two-drop mythic Gruul 1/1 Human Warlock is my highest scoring Command Zone eligible leader. She has two abilities. The first is to reduce activated costs of all creatures by her power, but not for free. She's in the color of Auras or colorless equipment like Bonesplitter to really drop those costs early on. Then she can activate herself for six mana to give all of your dorks +1/+1 and trample and haste for the turn. Since she counts herself with her cost reduction, that can be a minimum of two mana for using it with a power of four or more. She obviously wants to lead a brand-new archetype in Gruul colors for things that tap and require mana like Feldon of the Third Path or Elder Druid, each of which can drop to one mana each. She's broken with Magus of the Candelabra.
Since she creates a new archetype like Hylda, she's great here! She's also a mana sink in Green with ramp and a win con too. Love her loads, and she's so cheap you can drop her on the second turn pretty reliably and then repeatably a few times here and there with Command Tax just not adding much to her. Next hitting are enchantments.
#3. The Virtue Cycle
This adventure spell/enchantment is strong, I had three (the Blue, Black and Red ones) in my ten, so I just decided to cheat and run them all here. Let's look at each.
The Knowledge one will, for two mana, copy an ability you control. Then you can cast the enchantment for five mana and then you'll double your ETB triggers. The Persistence one is a two-mana sorcery removal spell for three or fewer toughness dorks and then you gain a pair of life. Then it costs seven. In your upkeep, you can Zombify a dork from any graveyard to your control, not just yours. I ran this in my Dark Spike Girls Commander deck two weeks ago as a variant of Living Death.
Virtue of Courage as a two-damage instant on the front end, and then five on the back. When you would deal noncombat damage to a foe, you can exile that many cards from your library and play them this turn, so this is card flow since you can cast a few spells and drop a land each turn. This works very strong in Pinger decks with tappers that deal damage like Kamahl, Pit Fighter or Prodigal Sorcerer. You can spend your mana to cast this getting more options for cards to cast.
The Strength Virtue has a sorcery that is a Raise Dead for dorks or lands, and then costs seven to drop. If your basic lands tap for mana, you make triple that amount. That's massive ramping, but it costs seven, but in a color that ramps lands not mana rocks, that could be a lot of value and seems doable.
Let's finish with the White one! The Ardenvale Fealty makes a 2/2 Knight with vigilance instantly. Then this costs five. In your end step, you put a +1/+1 counter on each dork and you untap them too. That grows them over time, and then you can swing and then untap and grow and block. This feels like a fixed Cathars' Crusade. Nice! Next is our planeswalker!
#2. Ashiok, Wicked Manipulator
The interesting thing about Ashiok is that they don't have a lot of presence on the secondary market despite being a mythic and planeswalker and you can pick them up cheap. They aren't getting the press they deserve, so let's take a looksee at this four-ability walker of the planes.
When you would pay life for an effect, instead exile that many cards from your library. That's nasty. Take her in color life loss for card flow like Ambition's Cost that draws three and pays three life. Now you'll exile three cards from your library instead. This is amazing in formats with larger than 60 cards like Commander at 100 or Five Color where this is a powerhouse at a minimum of 300 cards. And you can run four in Five Color so you can really build around Ashiok there. And that's just the static ability, we still have three loyalty abilities to unpack!
The +1 lets you examine the top two of your library and then exile one and draw the other. Pure card draw on a five drop from your library's top two let's you draw what you need most! Don't need that land? I got you, exile and draw the business card. Then the -2, which can be done twice with the starting loyalty of five, will make two 1/1 Nightmare tokens that will grow with +1/+1 counters permanently if you exiled a card this turn. That's very strong with the +1 or static ability! Then you can -7 as an ultimate to have your foe exile X cards from their library where X is your exiled mana cost, so that's a win-con over time.
Our top card next is obviously the instant!
#1. Stroke of Midnight
I've got your targeted removal spell covered! It destroys anything at instant speed for three mana save for lands and just leaves them 1/1 grounded Human in exchange. Compare this to commonly played three mana removal spells like Generous Gift - that leaves behind much bigger 3/3 but can smoke lands too (Ditto Beast Within). Vindicate cleanly answers anything, but at sorcery speed. Mortify only answers enchantments and creatures at instant speed.
This instantly becomes one of the best instant answers for 20-life multiplayer formats where the token matters like Five Color or Highlander, and then the 40-life default format of Commander will likely run this over the other options. It's very strong in any color combo too no matter what they give you. Ready for the era of the Stroke of Midnight to begin?
We finish with the unusual uncommon in my top spot! Next week we'll hit this list up again. I hope you enjoyed my look see at WOE, what would be your Top Ten?