January 15, 2020

Image Credit:

Daily Dose of Theros Beyond Death #20 – Guide to Combat Tricks and Removal Cards by Colour

Welcome all to the Daily Dose of Theros Beyond Death. Today I get to write one of my favourite articles of every preview season. It’s time for the guide to combat tricks and removal cards by colour for Theros Beyond Death. One of the best things you can do to prepare for prerelease is to know which cards are in the set and what they do. More specifically, you don’t want to be surprised by your opponent. The more knowledge you have the better. Knowing what spells can be cast help give you a leg up on your opponent. Theros Beyond Death will leave a lot of players wanting to play mono-coloured decks and if that’s the case, having intimate knowledge of each colour’s tricks is key.

White Combat Tricks and Removal Cards

White is littered with enchantments acting as removal spells. It starts off with Banishing Light being able to exile anything on the battlefield. Elspeth Conquer’s Death will make sure a large threat is taken away from your opponent. When it comes to pump spells, there are a couple of traditional ones in Karametra’s Blessing and Phalanx Tactics. Indomitable Will acts like a pump spell, but will stay around if your creature survives. If you need to lock down one creature, don’t look any further as both Dreadful Apathy and Heliod’s Punishment will do the trick.

If you need a blinking combat trick, Flicker of Fate could net you an extra trigger off one of your permanents. Those pesky enchantments won’t stand a chance thanks to cards like Heliod’s Intervention and Revoke Existence. White only had one instant speed creature removal (for non-enchantment creatures) in the form of Triumphant Surge. Another spell masking itself as an enchantment to get in some blocks is Omen of the Sun. There aren’t many mass removal spells in the set, but the best one is in white in the form of Shatter the Sky. Make sure you don’t get blown out by this one.

Blue Combat Tricks and Removal Cards

As usual Blue doesn’t have a ton of combat tricks and removal cards. Blue has a suite of counterspells including the enchantment Ashiok’s Erasure, the exiling Deny the Devine, the ability hitting Whirlwind Denial and the scrying Memory Drain. The best of the bunch though is probably Thassa’s Intervention thanks to its versatility to be used as a card draw if needed. Another card that can act like a counterspell against removal is the Aura Starlit Mantle. Ichthyomorphosis is Blue’s best impersonation of creature removal for the set. Blue’s best tempo play is the spell Sea God’s Scorn which can clear a battlefield in a hurry. When it comes to combat tricks, Blue brings in a couple to reduce the power of opposing creatures with the instant Chain to Memory and the creature Threnody Singer.

Black Combat Tricks and Removal Cards

Black cards in Theros Beyond Death are loaded with the most outright removal spells in the set. Drag to the Underworld can be a cheap way to destroy a creature, while Eat to Extinction and Final Death will make sure they get exiled instead. If you want to play the sacrificial choosing game with your opponents’ creatures, you can go either with the Aura Inevitable End or the spell route with Pharika’s Liberation. If you would like some permanents to cause some destruction, Black has that covered as well. Elspeth’s Nightmare can take out a power 2 or less threat, while Blight-Breath Catoblepas leaves you with a 3/2 creature. Mire’s Grasp and Mire’s Grasp are a couple of Auras that can help you shrink your opponents’ creatures. A great combat trick to possible steal one of your opponents’ creatures is with a well-timed Minion’s Return. Finally, Black also has a graveyard removal spell in the form of Cling to Dust. Black seems to have a pretty well-rounded removal suite.

Red Combat Tricks and Removal Cards

I was surprised by the overall level of removal spells in Red. Usually it is higher, but it does still have some nice ones. Red has some Auras that can cause some pain with the instant playing Aspect of Manticore and the damage dealing Iroas’s Blessing. Red also has some spells that can just straight up deal some damage to kill creatures. Final Flare can kill larger creatures, but Fateful End and the enchantment Omen of the Forge will allow you to deal damage to the face if necessary. If you need a ton of damage though to kill a larger threat or planeswalker, Purphoros’s Intervention will deal more damage each turn you wait to play it. Red only has one combat pumping trick, but it’s a good one in the 1-mana card Infuriate. If you need to kill a pesky artifact in the set, Irreverent Revelers will be a good creature to do that. Red gives you us 2 mini-sweepers in the form of Underworld Fires and Wrap in Flames. If you need to deal more damage, Storm’s Wrath can take out most creatures and planeswalkers.

Green Combat Tricks and Removal Cards

Like Blue, Green doesn’t have too many straight-out removal cards in its colour. It does however have a few ways to fight your opponents’ creatures. Chainweb Aracnir can take out flyers, while Warbriar’s Blessing give you some extra toughness for the fight ahead. If you need large fighting creature, Pheres-Band Brawler will hit for 4 power against an opposing creature. Flying creatures better watch out with spells like Plummet and Nylea’s Intervention being around. Green has two of the best ways to deal with enchantments in the set with the instant spells Return to Nature (bonus graveyard hit as well) and the 1-mana Mystic Repeal.

There you have it folks, a Theros Beyond Death Guide to Combat Tricks and Removal Cards by Colour. I think the overall suite of removal is strong. The combat tricks are a bit weaker, but could have good synergies for decks wanting to play enchantments. Thanks again for reading the Daily Dose of Theros Beyond Death. Join me again tomorrow as I test out the new format that is Theros Beyond Death Sealed!