Feb 7, 2018

Death of Yakizma First Impressions



Helvalla's Adorned is pretty impressive, as far as Fiend Hunters go; I think it'll see some play in D&T style decks. Angel of Promised Glory very notably doesn't specify that its target must have been put into that graveyard from the battlefield; while I don't anticipate that getting abused for reanimation, it's certainly an option, and regardless it's a decent midrange card. Valley Outcast is a strange tutor, probably not playable, but I wouldn't be that surprised. Heart of Odelia slots right into the classic W/B Lifegain deck. Harsh Unpreparedness is yet another Oblivion Ring; I think it's more playable than Judge's Decree, but weaker than Planar Eviction. Before the Storm is a Parallel Lives effect, but I think five mana's more than any current token deck wants to spend on it. Helvalla, God of Glory might be enough to make an Angel-tribal deck viable, relying mostly on Mious cards; it's certainly a decent commander for one, although not an ideal pick due to its mono-white nature. From what I've heard on the MSEM2 Discord, Fjorda's very playable in token lists, although it requires some adjustments to make every token get the buff. Alpine Almsbringer probably doesn't make the W/B lifegain deck, but it's worth swapping all the basic lands for snow lands and testing it. Giant's Wake is about as good as all our other five-mana boardwipes; better if there's a control deck using the new Snowstorm Titan or some other Giant as a finisher.



Young Abjumancer probably sees play in some version of UR Spells. Lorescale Serpent's a great top-end for a base-blue aggro deck. Irrblossom probably isn't good enough for UR Spells, but it might be worth testing in the U/X flying deck. Dawn of the Lights is the strangest planeswalker-hoser I've ever seen, but looks tragically unplayable. Echo Chamber looks like it could be a build-around for a very strange deck; I don't know what exactly that deck looks like. Chian MSEDH, maybe. Arcane Genesis, as a two-mana hard counterspell, might be playable; I'm not convinced. Ebilir, God of the Depths seems surprisingly mediocre. Snowswell Elemental might be playable in the right sort of hatebears deck. Snowstorm Titan looks like a good control finisher, especially in a WU deck that can also run Giant's Wake. If there's a snow-tribal deck, it runs Snowsculptor and Sphinx of Valhime Peak; if not, neither sees play. I love Think Ahead's flavortext, but I'd never run it over Opt. Fated Challenge is a great finisher, and probably completely broken — three mana's not nearly enough to pay for a cantripping Relentless Assault.



I wish this format had a way to break Necropresence. I don't see one, but I believe there's one out there. Uloff's Assertion is a mediocre sideboard option, but it's so vastly worse than Pithing Needle and similar effects (Tether of Simplicity, in MSEM2) I don't anticipate it ever seeing play. Maybe in MSEDH where you can just name their commander? Rising Snowbanks and Impending Doom are both good against token decks. Chill Through's okay removal that kills Declare, the Mother Bear and other indestructible threats. Nehel might be playable in a prison-style deck, but probably isn't. Essem's going to have a hard time finding places in decks; her -3's her only really exciting ability, given her cost, and Kalemn Weller fills a similar role for one mana cheaper. Still, she's a faster clock than Kalemn if your opponent has enough dead creatures. Snowstorm Legion probably isn't playable, even in W/B lifegain or the snow-matters deck, but I'm intrigued by it. Honorless Offering is one of mono-B control's best draw spells, if that deck's a thing. Promised Ascent is possibly the funniest anti-reanimator sideboard option in existence; unfortunately, it's bad against Eternity Witch and Liguno, and thus is unplayable in that role.



Saigura Brutalizer and Bergbreaker might be playable as finishers for Big Red decks, but I think there are better cards for that slot, like Sugon. Forsaken Mauler might see play in the Sligh decks that have been popular lately. Rallied Rabble might see play in the token decks. I really wish Avalanche was just a Skred reprint; as-is, it's unplayable, but a Skred would've been a huge push towards taking the Big Red decks NVA enables and pushing them up in tier. Stribius looks playable in any RG ramp deck looking to close games out with twenty damage of Fireball. Shaman of Pale Cold looks barely playable, maybe. Impulsive Plan is an incredibly strong draw spell for burn and aggro decks looking to turn excess land into midgame gas. Last Lash is also probably playable in the 20-in-one-go Stribius deck, or most mono-red aggro decks; side it out against control. It might even be playable in UR Spells.



Snowfield Mother looks like an all-star in anything midrangey. Laugar Lotus-Warrior might fit in a UG or RUG tempo deck — it's even a Warrior for PFP synergy. Peerless Brawler looks strong, I expect it to see play in aggressive green decks that aren't RG Infect. Frontier Hunter could be the top-end of a midrange deck with carefully chosen creatures. Snowsword Adept looks close to good but without some way to grant it evasion, it'll have a hard time being useful. Maybe UG Warriors wants it. Just kidding. Anyway, Promise of Spring is a passable finisher for ramp decks, vaguely resembling a Craterhoof Behemoth. Viridia the Forgotten One's a sideboard card to make control decks weep and never tap out again. I thank my lucky stars it can itself be countered. Rime Druid goes infinite with PFP's Exhaustive Toil, as mentioned in my PFP First Impressions article. Hardy Elk might be playable in Superfriends decks. Viridia's Presence makes combat math difficult to impossible, but isn't instant-speed enough to be any good outside of MSEDH.



Yngou the Snowbeast looks like a hilarious and fun ramp commander. Ravenwood Triad is very, very bad, because you start off by discarding three cards, then your opponent draws three cards, then they kill the Triad leaving you six cards behind. Amil the Seeker is probably too expensive to see play, but might be worth testing. Saigura Tam looks great in the Taiyohata Champion decks. Archangel of Hildrjorn is the sort of finisher control decks want. Note that you don't commit mana to the the card-draw trigger until after it's too late for countermagic, so you'll still have mana up to counter your opponent's counterspells. It will see play. Titan of Winter's Passing might, especially in Giant's Wake decks, but I wouldn't count on it.



Vantage Bridge is probably playable, especially in combination with topdeck manipulation; note that it triggers once for each attacker, but it checks the CMC of the top card only once, before you do any drawing. Put a high-CMC card on top, perhaps with PFP's Discordant Bell, and leave your opponent with a choice of not attacking at all or drawing you a card for every attacker. Gem of Ancient Treasures is fine in ramp decks for rushing a high-cost threat into play early — a manadork into the GoAT leaves you with seven mana on turn three, one short of a Liguno. Nothing else is especially exciting, with the possible exception of Sword of Eternal Frost in a Yakizma-heavy metagame.



Death of Yakizma's basics use the new Ixalan map template, which is cool; unfortunately, none of the art is particularly impressive, with the possible exception of the Swamp. For that matter, why does Death of Yakizma even have nonsnow basic lands? Couldn't we just have Snow basics with that template?

Speaking of Snow basics, yep, we've got those. I expect them to replace regular basics a lot of the time, given how much support and relatively little hate there is for them here.

There's also a cycle that's just the Temples from Theros block, except they're Snow (like Winterheath Pass). They'll see play only in decks that are taking Snow especially seriously, I think, and even then aggressive decks would probably rather just run basics and fetches.

Winterheath Snowbank, Winterheath Tundra, and Northern Holdout are an odd sort of miniature Urzatron. Northern Holdout is strangely not a snow land. I don't expect them to see play, largely because the payoff is relatively mediocre compared to the true Tron lands. Frozen Expanse, Frost Spires, and Encroaching Seasons are unlikely to be playable; Encroaching Seasons is the best snow-land-hate available, and it's still usually not worth hitting a basic snow land with it, so I don't see it stopping people from bringing snow basics even if it's a four-of in multiple popular decks for some reason.


Overall All-Stars

White: Heart of Odelia

Blue: Fated Challenge

Black: Honorless Offering

Red: Impulsive Plan

Green: Viridia the Forgotten One

Multicolor: Saigura Tam

Artifact: Vantage Bridge

Land: Snow Basic Lands

Command Zone: Yngou the Snowbeast

New Posts
  • Cy
    Nov 5, 2018

    WHITE Ainok Caretaker: I doubt Hound tribal's going to be a thing, but if so this is a solid anthem. Cybele: This feels very good in something midrangey, albeit necessarily nongreen midrange so it's not competing with Snowfield Mother; there's a small instigator glitch with an extra mana symbol there. Driven to Distraction: This is a weird break, but probably not actually good. Furtive Witch: This is strong, and might make a flicker deck actually viable. Herd of Sheep: I think this is weaker than it looks; it's a lot of value but that value's attached to a 1/1 you have to untap with. Legend of the Devout: If any of the Personas would be playable, it's this one, but I'm really not sold on the mechanic in general. It's an aura mechanic that not only doesn't fix the general problem auras have of opening up 2-for-1s, it also negates the standard (bogles) method of removing that weakness. Legendweaving: While I'm not surprised it can't fetch gods, that's still very disappointing. That said, this is still effectively a two-mana enchantment tutor at instant speed, which compares favorably to Idyllic Tutor and Search for Precedent. Radiant Bonds: This is not as good of an answer as the alternatives. BLUE Amateur Pilfering: This replaces Deny the Truth in mill. Benign Whisper: Hey, it's a Man-o-War. Might be playable in something flickerish. Braenid Nomad: There's a graphical glitch on instigator with this one. Buoyant Thoughts: Three mana for four cards is *almost* as good of a rate as green gets. This is presumably good in Seto Control/Mei Valentine/Arina Control and similar decks. Clever Rejoinder: Now that's a card for the control mirror, or for tempo vs control. Inspiring Journey: Seems suitable for a U/X deck with big threats, like RUG Rock//Roll, or possibly some kind of Bant. Still, it's entirely dependent on the Harvest to be playable; nobody's spending seven mana on three cards. Legend of the Wayward: See my above comments about personas, with the caveat that you can play this on an already tapped creature as part of some kind of nonsense combo. Moonlit Hunter: This guy feels worth tossing in some kind of control deck, possibly alongside Gim-Chimya. Peel from Reality: I don't think anyone's playing this, but this art is strictly better than the Mious and Yakizma arts. Whisper Witch: This is shockingly close to a blue Chupacabra. While I don't think Loathing/Hate/Malice wants her, there's got to be a blue midrange deck out there for her (possibly with Ardy's Study?). Witch's Apprentice: This might see play in some kind of blue blitz aggro deck, but I think Lord Rokai is significantly better. Yuren Lappowen: I think he looks a lot stronger than he is, although he might be playable in some kind of Discordant Bell deck? BLACK Birth of Whispers: This is kind of absurd in terms of the resilience it gives a creature deck, but I'm not convinced it's worth the additional two mana over Chigau. Still, worth watching. Forced Offering: Dropping this T2 on the play to destroy your opponent's only land is interesting, but the card's weak enough outside that situation I don't think it's playable. Frailty: This is probably black's best 1-mana instant speed removal spell, with only Glacia's Engrave comparing. Legend of the Weary: See my above comments about personas. Lessons Learned: I was very excited until I saw this wasn't actually card advantage. Pass. Siesa Tremund: I'm going to be testing this in Abzan Ardy's. This seems good. Small Luxuries: This feels great alongside Lady Gen, Kalemn Weller, and other similar discard outlets, and so feels worthwhile in Loathing/Hate/Malice and maybe Grixis Phoenixes. A Whisper's Touch: I think the nerf has probably made this irrelevant maindeck, though it's a passable sideboard option against go-wide decks. RED Advocate of the Hunt: This is spicy. It synergizes well with the PFP lands, as well as already strong cards like Aguri. I expect this to see a lot of play. Ainok Alpha: Another anthem for the Hounds deck. This increases my optimism about it significantly, as with Fjorda it can run 12 two-mana anthems. Ainok Lout: If there's a Hounds deck, this guy's in. Autumnal Watch: This is probably not great outside of Revert to Moonlight decks, but awesome in them. Dance of Fire: This isn't Bolt enough for me to want it in most decks, but there's probably a deck for it somewhere. Latent Potential: Worth testing in RG infect, I think? Legend of the Brave: See my above comments about personas. Rush of Wonder: This is almost good card selection, but I think it doesn't quite get there. Man, I miss Impulsive Plan. Selma Lappowen: Now that's a storm enabler. (The rapport ability's also probably fine in tempo decks of some sort.) Trinkets and Charms: This feels like something Izzet Blitz might want? The Witch Queens: You know how I keep saying Big Red almost has enough tools? I think Big Red finally has enough tools. GREEN Ainok Hunter: ANOTHER LORD! Okay, I think sixteen lord Hounds might be worth taking to a skirmish. Charitable Wisdom: There's got to be something broken to do with this, but I have no idea what. Cornucopia Crescendo: It's sorcery speed, but close enough to Chord that I think it sees play. Edith Waunt: She feels like a reasonable threat in decks that want aggressive green one-drops instead of manadorks. So, basically only monogreen Jund (and monogreen Naya, I guess). Grayce Blaen: Feels like a solid midrange piece, but competes with Tsang Jin and thus will likely see little to no play. The Last Hunt: This looks very cool but not playable. Legend of the Generous: See my above comments about personas. Roads Untraveled: This is probably playable in some deck that uses a lot of enchantments; if there's a green Time Machine deck or something. Vestiges of Autumn: This looks like it could be playable, but it practice almost certainly isn't. GOLD Desraen, Serpent's Will: Desraen feels almost good, in ways very reminiscent of Kess, but awkwardly doesn't fit in the same kinds of decks Kess would. I think it's a good card with no actual deck to put it in. Lady Heiffyd: Getting Tamiyo's +1 (sidegrade) on a three mana planeswalker is great. The -4 probably matters occasionally; the ult is irrelevant. She's still good in control, and would be decent in tempo if not for the power duo of Azun and Saigura Tam already taking up the three-drop slot. Maybe if there's an Esper or Bant tempo deck? Concord of Ravens: Probably not playable in mill. Scrollsnatcher: This goes into UB Rogues. This is good in UB Rogues. Blood Harvest: I don't think this is good in this format, but it's got potential. Still, gold cards are not what I want to look to for punishing nonbasic lands. Twinfire Dragon: This is a control finisher, I think? Or a midrange threat for Jund? This card's too good not to play but I don't know what shell it has. Spirit of Autumn: This can get very nuts-ish in something like Naya; but the fact that the tokens are white not green limits its use. Still, probably worth testing for those of you who play that style of deck. Reflect on Serenity: This feels like a plausible engine for an enchantment-based prison deck, possibly Writing Wonders; it doesn't quite fit in Time Machine, I think. Stormchaser Mage: It isn't relevant in MSEM, where we have Autumm Fae and Master of Tranquility. Trae, Serpent's Grasp: I don't think the decks that want this effect want it on a three-drop. I could very well be wrong and I'd be excited to see this see play. Exhausted Farmhand: Despite the vague similarity to Deathrite Shaman, this card is much worse than it looks. Aelinn: Now that's a good aggressive threat. I will be testing this in some kind of Mardu variant. Witch of Spring's Promise: This is great filtration, plus very silly synergies with archives (especially Ardy's). I will be testing this in some kind of Ardy's deck, probably BUG. COLORLESS Expedition Map: Hey, more redundancy for land-tutoring effects for Tron. Lumber Camp: This... might be a relevant engine for something? I think it's too slow for GP use. Blundering Clocktower: I think this is a prison piece? Cumulus Horizon cycle: Canon painlands are worse than PFP painlands, generally, so I don't think these see any play. Moon of the Final Dawn cycle: I don't think these are playable, but since they're fetchable I could see them showing up as one-ofs in decks that need lategame filtration. TOP PICKS White: Furtive Witch Blue: Buoyant Thoughts Black: Frailty Red: Advocate of the Hunt Green: Cornucopia Crescendo Gold: Lady Heiffyd Artifact: Uh... Expedition Map, I guess? None of these are playable. Land: Moon of the Final Dawn cycle is fetchable and so I guess might be relevant. Sideboard: Clever Rejoinder is amazing tech against control. Command Zone: Desraen, Serpent's Will may not have a functioning shell for 60 cards, but you better believe she can helm a Brawl or Commander deck.
  • Cy
    Feb 2, 2018

    White Moonlit Stalker 's a key piece in a Harpy tribal deck that, like green-blue Warriors, probably doesn't have the pieces to be viable. On the note of Harpies, Gravelocked Seeker 's a really cool design for one or two mana more than I'd be willing to spend on it. Haunted Sunseeker feels like it'd be good in a Persevere deck, but I haven't been particularly happy with that archetype in the past and don't think it's gotten enough support to push it to playability. Planar Eviction is one of the three new Oblivion Rings MSEM2 is getting in this update (along with DYA's Harsh Unpreparedness and PFP's Judge's Decree ), and although it's the only one of the three that lacks flash, I think it's still the strongest of them. On the other hand, Oblivion Ring/Banishing Light/Detention Sphere don't see much modern play, so I'm not confident we'll be seeing any of them. Gift of Eternity is another piece of redundancy for decks that want to make themselves unable to lose, then deal themselves massive amounts of damage in a single turn; I'm hoping PFP's All or Nothing brings more such decks into the format. It also allows you to casually tank a Witchpult, so there's that. United Force should see play in RW tokens, and Yrodu is a nonsense card that's probably unplayable but I can't look away from it. Idyllic Tutor will make enchantment tutoring even more readily available, although they're already the most conveniently tutorable nonland card type in MSEM2. Blue Thunderstride probably has a home in UR spells, at least in builds with a heavier top-end. Two Slippery Capuchins can pass a spell back and forth forever, gaining a limitless number of Surging Kalak triggers each, then swinging unblockably for the kill. Dodgy Infant can substitute for one or both of them, too. Cloudshaper and Sylph Spawning are probably playable in U/X skies; strictly speaking, Breeze Sylph is another Flying Men functional reprint, but not one that deck needs. Synapstorm and OPO's Spilling Secrets make any blue spell a cantrip. Infinite Dreams is an EDH card if there ever was one. Eldritch Undoing is a very narrow answer, but might see sideboard play; Reconsider is essentially Miscalculation, and is thus at least somewhat playable. Vaporize will replace Essence Scatter in 1-2 color control decks, if any are playing it, but I think I like Soul Pierce better in that slot. Aerolius is a disgusting hatebear, but costs one mana too much to be playable. (At U less, would she be a hatedrake?) Orria Mirrorpelt is too stylish not to build an MSEDH deck around. Monkeyshines is a playable cantrip only in decks that want a lot of one-mana cantrips. Black Dreameater 's sideboard material against control and some combo decks. Deathmask Dancer should see play in base-black aggro decks. Doomsower 's cool, but probably costs 1 too much to be playable, at least not without a way to create Human tokens. Deathmask Initiation is a reason for the persevere deck to run black, and a mildly inefficient draw-engine in any black deck with creatures; I don't think it'll see competitive play. Blood Ritual 's yet another Lava Spike, this one at instant speed and unable to hit planeswalkers; black-red burn will play it, probably. Blood Bond goes infinite with False Savior or Tharyen, Lord of Subturgia . Path to Mortality would be good at one mana less, but is hard to justify as-is. Birth of Death is expensive, but will see play if mono-black control materializes, and might in UB. Deceitful Tutor should see a little play, replacing Tharyen's Machinations in any deck that currently runs it. Red Coralkeeper might see play in RW tokens. Schoolstrider and the UR Merfolk deck in general have potential. Shoring Naiad might be playable in UR spells, if not for the existence of (even post-nerf) Vedalken Reshaper . Naiad Looter 's another almost-playable or barely-playable. Impetuous Impetus could be a curve-topper for Sligh decks but I think there are better options. Devious Naiad 's a sufficiently stupid combat trick that it might see play in Taiyohata Champion decks. Blood Tide is playable, and in combination with Rylei Wavebreaker might be exactly what Big Red needs to become a real deck. Earthrend has potential, but I'm having a hard time evaluating it. Green Alpha Stag 's a good curvetopper. Spellbane Vulpine is good against the current spell-heavy meta. Lotusworn Druid would be a key storm card for two mana, but is alas unplayable at four. Springcaller has potential in a GU control deck. Master of the Glen is playable in SOR's Elemental tribal deck, if it ever gets off the ground. Whispers of the Dark is not a good enough engine to be worth the hoops you have to jump through to get it online, which is sad because I'd enjoy jumping through them. Primal Resurgence should be playable. Dying Wishes has potential, but I'm not sure if it'll see play. If mono-green ramp still exists as a deck after the Rock//Roll nerf, Terra Novea has a place in it. Life Immemorial is weaker than Green Sun's Zenith, but not by much, and probably playable even without a Dryad Arbor in the format. Multicolor Seila, the Lost One feels close to playable, but not quite there. Not All Who Wander isn't Tooth and Nail, but it's the Tooth and Nail we deserve. I haven't a clue what to run it in, though. Gim-Chimya the Invisible , assuming its rules work, is an excellent wit support card, as well as a generally passable tempo or draw-go threat. Too Clever By Half might surpass Entelan Erasure to be the best wheel in the format. Lotusheart Goran might go in the Abzan Rock deck I've been musing about. Mele is a very strange five-color commander, but probably unplayable in MSEM proper. The Sun Also Rises is one of our better boardwipes, but is confusingly similarly named to The Sun Rises . This Too Shall Pass probably isn't playable, but I'm not certain. Artifacts If you've read my PFP review, you know I wasn't excited about its artifact suite, other than a combo enabler or two. I'd like to apologize to Herzi; having not yet examined Novea, I did not understand what an unexciting collection of artifacts looked like. Novea brings us a cycle of enemy-colored mana rocks, and that's it. No equipment, nothing. Gor r an Totem might see play in WB lifegain decks featuring Nyatt, Ishyn's Tie , and all of them will find homes in EDH decks endlessly hungry for more manarocks. That's it, though. Lands Much like PFP, Novea brings a new cycle of full-art basic lands. These I expect to see fairly often, and occasionally use myself; I think the Mountain and Forest are especially pretty. The nonbasic lands in Novea fall into two monocolored cycles; there's no manafixing for us here. The common cycle are fairly ordinary utility lands; Bloodriver and Corpsebed are probably the most useful, but Seedshrine might also be playable, especially given its synergy with PFP's persist cards. Corpsebed is notably fetchable at instant speed, to snipe cards out of graveyards in response to reanimation; for that reason, I'd venture to say it's on par with Bojuka Bog despite only taking two cards. The rare cycle of legendary lands are wild. I'm genuinely unsure how to feel about them. The green one's a one-shot mana doubler, the blue one's a wheel, the red one chunks half of someone's life total, the white one's a mass pump, and the black one reanimates someone's entire graveyard. I suspect that Sea of Skies Beyond and Cradle of Corruption , at least, are playable in control decks, and all five of them should see EDH play. Overall All-Stars White: Planar Eviction Blue: Slippery Capuchin Black: Blood Ritual Red: Blood Tide Green: Life Immemorial Multicolor: Not All Who Wander Artifact: Gorran Totem Land: Cradle of Corruption Command Zone: Orria Mirrorpelt
  • Cy
    Feb 1, 2018

    White Purging Watchkeeper does a passable Scavenging Ooze impression, and if there's an Abzan "The Rock"-style deck I'd expect to see it in the main or side. Disassociate is just a Journey to Nowhere almost-reprint with the Banishing Light functionality; I expect it to see more play than Journey does in Modern, given our lack of a Path equivalent. Serene Prayer is a huge boon to TurboGlory decks, creating a buffer of ten life that the opponent has to burn through before they can touch a glory counter. Dregs of Order is a passable control piece, shredding tokens and buying a few turns against real creatures. Martyr's Sacrifice might see play in TurboGlory or Gloryless Turbofog, but three's a lot to pay for a fog with upside that probably won't matter that much. Kasienka 's playable in a white weenie/D&T deck, or in MSEDH. Overall, white's adding a few very strong cards, but not many total playables. Blue Resource Management , Fretport Gravetender , and Compelling Pariah all seem like interesting engines, but none of the three seem efficient enough to see competitive play. Unassuming Waif would be an excellent card in the GU Warriors deck that unfortunately will probably never exist. Exquisite Heist is a "fair" Ancestral Visions, and I fully expect it to see play in essentially every blue deck. Precarious Ledgers is potentially a key piece in a hypothetical Lantern Control-style deck, but glancing through the rest of MSEM, the other pieces all seem to be missing. Still, it's one I'm going to come back to every few months when new sets are added. Thespian's Finale seems potentially strong in a white-blue flicker deck, and might be the piece that pushes me to actually build it. Merchant's Guile is literally just Brainstorm for one mana more; it's still probably playable given how many fetchlands we've got floating around. Scatter Riches resembles a four-mana Render Silent , with the interesting upside of guaranteeing a tapped out opponent in a control mirror; I don't think it's playable, but it might see some sideboards. The Flood of Information nerf might make Empty the Streets see play alongside Vedalken Reshaper ; pre-nerf, I'd have said Flood of Information was a better pick. Flee the City 's a good reason to splash blue in the Poisonous deck, but I don't think the Poisonous deck's good enough even with the splash. Selective Prophecies is yet another big sorcery-speed draw spell; I'd run Merkurio's Insight over it essentially always, which is unfortunate since it's a cool and skill-testing design. Really, Exquisite Heist is the card to watch here. Black Vassal of Virulence is an interesting anti-aggro option, particularly in combination with topdeck manipulation effects, but probably too unreliable to see play. False-Cure Smuggler has potential as an engine piece, in combination with the Vanishing enchantments of PFP, the vast assortment of planeswalkers in MSEM, or the poison cards of IMP/PSA. Frenzied Watchkeeper is a threat to keep an eye on, potentially seeing play alongside Lady Genevieve in a BR cripple deck. Conspiracy of Ravens is a powerful discard spell; I think it's comparable to but slightly weaker than Council's Will , and will see play. Flesh to Rot is a bit stronger than Shadow Sky , but given that Shadow Sky hasn't seen much play I don't expect it to either unless a mono-black control deck develops. Left Bereft , similarly, is unlikely to see play outside of a mono-black or blue-black control deck, but powerful within one, giving black a rare answer to enchantment-focused board states. Harriet's a decent answer to planeswalkers, and has sufficiently above-the-curve stats to see play in aggressive black decks, as well as having serious synergy potential with Frenzied Watchkeeper . Speaking of planeswalkers, Kalemn Weller is vaguely reminiscent of Liliana of the Veil. While the +1 doesn't work with an empty hand, and she can't remove a creature the turn she comes down and survive, I think she's still a powerhouse in midrange and controlling black decks. I fully intend to try switching my main control deck back from Jeskai to Esper and including her alongside Seto San . Red Balanced Blade is a second copy of White Petal Ronin for any deck that's using it for Equipment/Aura synergy instead of toughness-matters, and indeed arguably an upgrade on that front; it might see play in a RG Infect list as an excellent carrier of Kalak triggers, but its anti-synergy with Red Silk Dancer is unfortunate. Rising Riots might find a slot in the UR land destruction deck, if it ever returns. Worship in Vain is a plausible way for burn decks to refuel, but as a four-drop that doesn't do anything until turn five, it might be hard to justify. Carve a Path doesn't have enough support in-set to be a viable deck, but in combination with AFM vanishing cards like Savrios' Masterpiece or Doomed Fate , it might create a new archetype. Cold Embrace of Steel is probably not a good card, but I'm looking forward to testing it in my Arbalest Tribal (deathtouch/fight) deck. Ill Fated Travels is unfortunately not actually the best way to cheat a Tarraka-no-Oni into play, but has hilarious potential as an alternative way to get a Liguno . Finally, Alexei might see play in aggressive or midrange decks, but I think it's only really good against other midrange decks, and at 3 toughness is unfortunately fragile. Green Sewer Pack supports a dredge-like playstyle that, to my knowledge, hasn't been seen since the MSEM2 reboot. Canal Lurker has potential as a finisher to give G/X control decks some serious inevitability, but its vulnerability to exile removal, like the commonly played Shield's Rebuttal , is rough. At 5 mana, Mob Rallier 's probably too expensive for Monogreen Jund, but a similar deck with a higher curve might want it, as might a Naya Tokens deck if one exists. Belligerent's Augur is a lord in the wrong colors, unfortunately, because blue-green Warrior tribal sounds like a beautiful strategy. Coppergild Mercenary is difficult or impossible for UR Spells to deal with permanently, and thus will probably see play as a metagame call against what appears to be MSEM2's current "deck to beat." Fretport Froppers is a key piece in Standard Frog Combo, but with Memory's Collapse not in MSEM, I haven't managed to find a way to rebuild the combo there. Even if it were possible, though, as a three-card combo it's less reliable than existing MSEM classics like Oops All Life. Shared Reminiscence is a solid support piece for a grindy green/X midrange deck, but we haven't seen much in the way of classic Jund or Abzan midrange in MSEM; I'd be curious to see if Shared Reminiscence helps enable such strategies. Fretport's Lament has a lot of potential for helping a mill deck stabilize against aggro, but as unlikely as a good mill deck seems in MSEM, a good green mill deck seems even more farfetched. Multicolor Days of Decay is a versatile but inefficient answer; I'm not convinced there's a deck that wants it. All or Nothing is terrifyingly close to Ad Nauseam, and I'm hoping there's an incredibly reckless combo deck that wants it. Madelon 's a reasonable sideboard card and an entertaining commander, but I don't think there's a green-blue MSEM2 deck for her to go in. If there is, it probably wants to be running Helene Trant ; she's a very good source of value for a controlling or midrangey GU deck. Nataila probably earns a spot in the hypothetical Abzan rock deck I've been mentioning; I don't know if that deck will be good, but I'm looking forward to giving it a spin. Finally, Mass Executions is our first four-mana hard sweeper, strictly speaking—but it's a sweeper for decks that don't want sweepers. I might test a more token-heavy Seto San deck to see if it wants to play a board wipe that refills everyone's hand. Unjust Sentence is yet another Lava Spike for burn, and the damage is unpreventable to boot. Unfortunately, unlike the other copies of that effect burn's already running, it can't hit planeswalkers. Inciting Bard 's playable in a Monogreen Jund deck, probably. Inkwell Daggers is potentially one of the best new cards in the hypothetical Sultai Poisonous deck, but again, that's probably not a good deck. Persecution Official is reminiscent of Meddling Mage; it's a sideboard card, not a maindeck one, but it ought to be good against creature-based combo strategies, at least those that actually cast their creatures. Exhaustive Toil is an incredibly exciting (broken?) combo piece; it generates infinite mana with DYA's new Rime Druid as early as turn 2, as well as being intensely synergistic with PFP's own Plague Mask (see below). Haphazard Militia works as a second copy of Plague Mask in that deck; either allows you to untap your creatures for a mere 1 mana, as often as you like. Finally, Invalidate is a Force Spike and a Mana Tithe at the same time, and I expect it to see play in tempo lists in both blue and white. Artifacts Plagues doesn't have much in the way of exciting artifacts, to my view. None of the Equipment seems likely to see play, with the possible exception of Plague Mask , given its easy combo with Exhaustive Toil . Abandoned Memorial lends itself very easily to infinite mana combos with any dork or rock capable of producing three mana, but at six mana itself—requiring a total of eight to combo—I'm skeptical if there's a good shell around it. Artisan's Masterpiece and Arcor Diamond will be casual MSEDH staples, but are both unlikely to see MSEM play. Elixir of Immortality might deserve a sideboard slot if mill ever becomes a serious meta presence, but it's hard to justify over Memorial of the Fallen , which fills the same role in a land-slot. Finally, Discordant Bell is probably unplayable without miracles in the format, but I'm excited to throw together a casual deck using it in combination with TGE's trade mechanic. Lands Plagues of Fretport brings a new cycle of full-art basic lands, which I expect to see some play but not a whole lot. I personally intend to keep using primarily the Path of Shadows full-art basics. Much more importantly, it also brings a new full cycle of fetchlands (like Hazy Lagoon ), and another of fetchable dual-lands (like Sedate Tundra ). I think the tapfetches are generally weaker than the Khaliz-Doran shockfetches. However, they might see play in combination with the TGE cycle-lands, the GNJ sanctums, the TWR utility lands, or any of the new lands from Novea, all of which essentially negate the drawbacks of the tapfetches. The fetchable painlands, on the other hand, are quite exciting. Much like the K15 checklands, they're best in a manabase heavy on basics and fetches; unlike the K15 checklands, they can provide an untapped dual on the first turn at the tiny cost of a few points of life. Based on what I've seen of them in Standard, the drawback is relatively easy to turn off, especially in a fetch-heavy deck; that said, decks relying on a manabase of shockfetches and fetchable painlands are going to lose a few aggro games they should otherwise have won. Still, I expect to see the fetchable painlands showing up in many 2-3 color aggro and midrange decks. Overall All-Stars White: Serene Prayer Blue: Exquisite Heist Black: Kalemn Weller Red: Balanced Blade Green: Coppergild Mercenary Multicolor: Exhaustive Toil Artifact: Plague Mask Land: The fetchable painland cycle Command Zone: Madelon, Merchant's Heir

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