I love making lists, and it's been proven that people love reading lists as well. Lists are probably one of my favorites forms of content to create because they're usually quite easily digestible, with clear breaks between one topic or subject and the next.
Well, all of Kaldheim has been released and today we have a sort of list! I've spoken a lot about Kaldheim in the past few weeks, covering some of my favorite cards as they appeared, and today I want to cover a favorite of mine in the remaining cards in each color.
One thing I noticed and wanted to mention before we got started was that this was a particularly hard set to pick cards from. Not because there weren't a lot of great cards - there are! - but so many of the great cards are dependent on whether you're playing a) specific creature types (elves, dwarves, giants, etc.), or b) snow mana. If you're not, the card quality goes down significantly.
For example, I think Blood on the Snow is a really sweet card, but it's significantly less sweet if you aren't playing snow lands, or that many snow lands. Realistically, you want to use at least four snow mana to cast this, and it costs six mana. That basically means that, outside of a two color deck with four snow basics in play, you're not really getting the best deal from the card. Meanwhile, with four or more snow lands, this is a fantastic ability. So, a lot of the cards can be really hit or miss depending on how heavily you commit to the set's themes.
All that being said, let's take a look at some of my standouts!
White - Search for Glory
Search for Glory is a pretty sweet tutor, and it's aggressively costed as well. Having a cost only one mana higher than Demonic Tutor is about the best you can ask for. While this is a "snow" sorcery, that doesn't matter a ton, and I'm actually looking at this card as if it didn't search for snow permanents. That being said, it does search for them, which means it can most notably get a land for you if needed. The main draw here is being able to search out any legendary creature or planeswalker for three mana, which is pretty great actually, and adding sagas to that list makes it even better.
One thing I wish is that this simply searched out historic cards, but I can see how a) using that keyword might be confusing, b) it doesn't incorporate the set's snow theme, and c) searching for any artifact would make this a much stronger card.
Just like being able to search for sagas, I don't think the life gain on the card is super relevant, but combining all of these together really makes for a nice package at a great rate.
Blue - Alrund's Epiphany
I absolutely love a good Time Warp, and I was one of the first proponents of the Turns deck in Modern, doing several videos on it before it was mainstream. (Hipster plug.) I think it's pretty comical how R&D waffles between making Time Walks that either exile themselves, because you want to be safe when it comes to taking extra turns, and shuffling them into your library, because you should never run out of extra turns either. It's such a fine line when it comes to the number of extra turns you should be allowed: either infinite or exactly one.
I think we've learned from experience that six mana might be the sweet spot for an extra turn, especially if you add an extra goodie in there. I was a huge fan of Karn's Temporal Sundering, and this is less restrictive than that. Depending on how you look at it though, this either costs six mana, seven mana, or eight mana, but the flexibility is nice. Worth noting that getting the two 1/1 birds isn't dependent on anything but casting the spell, which I mention because you might think it needs to be foretold or you need to control a snow permanent or something.
Black - Burning-Rune Demon
In addition to taking turns, I'm also a sucker for a good demon. Liliana's Contract was one of my favorite cards in M19, even though there were barely four playable demons in the format to ever make it work. But most demons remind me of Mulldrifters in that they're sizable fliers that end up drawing you at least a card or two. Burning-Rune Demon is no different.
This card is basically Gifts Ungiven, but on a 6/6 creature, which is nice if you're playing a deck that can game the system. Getting both a Damnation and a Wrath of God, for example. Or if you're Cubing and you're able to get both a Snapcaster and an Ancestral Recall, for example. There are a lot of ways to get the exact effect you want from this demon, if not the exact card. Two different removal spells, two different counterspells, etc. This is a sizable body that, with a little creative deck-building - or an ability to take advantage of your graveyard - can get you whatever your heart desires.
Red - Goldspan Dragon
This was pretty much a no brainer. Honestly, none of the Red cards that I haven't talked about yet really excite me other than Goldspan Dragon. I think this is the color most guilty of being too connected with the set's core themes, such as giants, dwarves, and snow mana. Goldspan Dragon is a pretty welcome addition to five-mana hasty dragons though.
Following in the footsteps of things like Thundermaw Hellkite, Glorybringer, and Stormbreath Dragon, Goldspan Dragon can attack for four the turn it hits play, then you get a free treasure. The opponent tries to kill it? Free treasure! Attack next turn? Free treasure! This is a nice little mana boost, especially since the Dragon lets you sacrifice treasures for 2 mana instead of one, and if you have a way to take advantage of artifacts on the board, even better!
This is a good dragon. I like good dragons.
Green - Old-Growth Troll
Every set needs their Yorvo, Lord of Garenbrig or Steel Leaf Champion. This is it, but I think it might be better than both of those, by a good margin. Not only are you getting a solid 4/4 with trample for four mana, but then it becomes a Wild Growth, adding two mana to your mana pool. But wait, there's more! For a single mana, you get a second 4/4 with trample! This is actually a ridiculous rate and a surprisingly obnoxious card to have to deal with...twice! While having to pay an additional mana is not nothing, it's basically nothing for a second 4/4. This card is great and an auto-include in any Green deck that can support it.
Honestly, none of the gold and artifact cards really impress me. There are some decent ones, but none that really blow me away, and I don't think I'm a huge fan of the sagas in this set. They all seem just a little underwhelming, like R&D was playing it safe this time, and maybe that's the correct choice.
Despite the heavy thematic elements in the set, Kaldheim still looks sweet and has some great new options for several formats. While I don't think many of the cards in today's article are going to make it into any Eternal formats, or something like Modern (which is not an Eternal format), I do think some of them should see a good deal of Standard play.
Let me know what you think down below, and what cards are piquing your interest! Thanks so much for reading, and I hope you guys are all doing great. Be sure to stay safe, use promo code FRANK5 for 5% off, and I'll catch you all next week!