October 10, 2016

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Fill out your decks with these post-rotation gems!

Have you gotten all the gems you wanted from Origins and Dragons of Tarkir?

As I’m sure you’re aware, we’re digging into Kaladesh nicely which means that we say goodbye to Origins and Dragons of Tarkir in Standard. This is a great time to look back and pick up any cards we passed on for our Commander decks because they were too expensive. I’m going to highlight a few I’m looking to pick up for existing decks, or for future decks I haven’t met yet!

Origins gave us five “pain lands” which seem to have been made for Commander. Firstly, they come into play untapped. Perfect. Second, they tap for colourless mana which is not insignificant since Oath of the Gatewatch. And most importantly, they can tap for one of two colours of mana, at the cost of a single life point. When you start with 40 life and games can go long, you’ll rarely pay more than two life total to one of them. Often zero. If you don’t have the enemy paired ones yet, they’re dirt cheap right now! Shivan Reef is the most expensive at about $3.50. Get ’em!

Another card from Origins I’m excited about is Archangel of Tithes. It’s got an effect we love in multiplayer Commander, putting a cost on attacking! Sure, being on a creature means it can be dealt with earlier, but you also get the unique ability to force opponents to pay if they want to block, which could also deter them from casting spells that tap them out. Pricewise, it’s on par with Ghostly Prison even with it’s Conspiracy 2 reprint. An easy buy if you ask me!

I’d like to highlight a few cards from Origins that are fantastic in our format and are cheaper than dirt right now. Evolutionary Leap is about a buck, and is an incredible sac outlet. We love our sac outlets! If you have any sort of graveyard interaction, all the better! Tragic Arrogance is similarly priced, and I think it deserves a place in any white deck. The fact that you’re choosing things, and your opponent has to sacrifice the rest, annoying traits like hexproof and indestructible are irrelevant! And it’s sided in your favour to boot! Lastly, Chandra’s Ignition is a card I find myself putting in more and more red decks. Very frequently it clears most of the board and can potentially win the game on the spot if your opponents don’t have a big enough life buffer. The player with some life leftover? Just attack them! I’ll be picking up a few of each of these for future decks, guaranteed!

Not only has Magic Origins rotated, but so has Dragons of Tarkir, giving us another pool of cards to pick up for cheap!

They’re not as low as a buck, but the Dragonlords are cheaper than they’ve ever been. Much like the God cycle from Theros, they’ll probably just keep climbing as more and more Commander decks are helmed by them. On our podcast, I brewed up a Dragonlord Atarka build I’m kind of smitten with! Now’s the time, right?

Let’s talk Sidisi, Undead Vizier! We all love tutors, since there are so many dang cards in our decks, and for a few dollars you can get this terrific one! It’s most easily compared to Rune-Scarred Demon, which is getting pricey. The demon is a better body, but it’s much more expensive to cast, and to buy! I imagine most decks that want Sidisi will be happy to exploit a juicy creature into the graveyard to be brought back in no time! Three of these is about one Rune-Scarred Demon, so I guess I’m getting three!

And lastly, the moment I’ve been waiting for since the first few weeks of Dragons being released, DEN PROTECTOR!!! Man, this card shot up in price almost right away and I immediately put it out of my mind for so long. It’s no Eternal Witness, but it’s pretty darn close! And at only a couple dollars or so, it’s a very reasonable replacement on a budget! I’ve not owned one for so long, I’m probably going to get ten so no deck is ever without one ever again!

Those are the cards I’m most excited about as a Commander player. Are there any post-rotation pickups you’re ordering? Let me know in the comments! Now I just have to put my order in before I publish this and you all clean out the store!