After a few weeks of silence, it seems that MTG spoilers are slowly beginning to trickle into the wild again. Technically, Phyrexia: All Will Be One spoiler season has not currently started, but a series of leaks have allowed players to get some glimpses at what to expect. A recent Amazon leak has inadvertently revealed the two Commanders featured in the Phyrexia: All Will Be One preconstructed decks, and they do not disappoint! Here are the two new Commanders helming Phyrexia: All Will Be One’s constructed decks! Note that these are leaks with pretty strong sources, but if you want to wait for the official spoilers, consider this your spoiler warning.
Phyrexia: All Will Be One Preconstructed Commander Decks
Pictured above is the first of two Phyrexia: All Will Be One Commander decks. Both of these have accidentally been leaked on the Bazillion Amazon site, so they may need a tad bit of translation. The following translations are provided by some Redditors from the main thread discussing these leaks:
Ixhel, Descendent of Atraxa – 1WBG
Legendary Creature – Phyrexian Angel
Flying, vigilance, toxic 2
Corrupted — At the beginning of your end step, each opponent who has three or more poison counters exiles the top card of his or her library face down. You may look at and play those cards as long as they remain exiled, and you may spend mana as if you were any color to cast those spells. 2/5
If Ixhel plays as translated, it’s a pretty impressive engine. For those not familiar, Toxic is a new mechanic in Phyrexia: All Will be One that works as a nerfed version of Infect. Instead of directly changing a creature’s damage into Poison Counters, creatures with Toxic instead deal physical damage in addition to Poison Counters. Ixhel’s Toxic count is two, which means it will deal two Commander damage (because it has two power) and two Poison Counters.
In order for Ixhel to start playing cards off your opponent’s libraries, you need to get three Poison Counters on them. There are likely other cards in the deck that can make this condition more effective. Once you reach that condition, Ixhel starts exiling one card per Corrupted opponent on each of your end steps that you can play with any color of mana. Overall, this seems like a rather exciting Commander.
The second Commander deck for Phyrexia: All Will Be One spotlights the Ally faction on New Phyrexia that is desperately rebelling against the Phyrexians. This Commander is rather unique, so be prepared for a lot of player discussion on it:
Neyali, Sun’s Vanguard 2RW
Legendary Creature – Human Rebel
Attacking tokens you control have double strike.
Every time one or more tokens you control attack a player, exile the top card from your library. During any turn you have attacked with a token you can play that card.
Unlike Ixhel, Neyali has no evasion. That said, Neyahel doesn’t trigger its own advantage ability. Both of these Commander exile cards off your opponent’s decks and cast them, but, unlike Ixhel, who needs to Corrupt her opponents, Neyali cares about attacking tokens. Notably, there is a bit of confusion about whether the correct translation here is ‘tokens’ or ‘token creatures.’ Still, there hasn’t exactly been a creature that cares about an attacking token or token creature before. The closest cards that have written text like this one are cards that create tokens that are attacking upon creation. For those interested, here is the source of the leak.
Where Could These Cards See Play?
Either way, there is a ton of excitement for Neyali in existing ‘token matters’ EDH decks. As many Redditors have pointed out, this card is absolutely disgusting in the 99 of a deck like Jinnie fay, Jetmir’s Second. Jinnie Fay can turn any token you create into 2/2 green cat tokens with haste or 3/1 green dog tokens with vigilance. Neyali can give all of these creatures Double Strike and, essentially, draw extra cards off your opponent’s decks for you to use on any turn those creatures attack.
That said, there is a large of players who aren’t sure whether Neyali is strong enough to run as a Commander. While she is quite powerful with token synergies, Neyali is quite bad on its own:
“The floor is really low (does nothing but be a vanilla 3/3 for 4 mana), but the ceiling can be high. Another reason why I think she’s lackluster is we have an almost direct comparison in Ixhel which is also a 4 mana legendary that also exiles cards to play by reaching a specific condition.
Advantages Ixhel has over Neyali:
- Better stats overall, 7 total stats vs Neyali’s 6
- Keywords such as flying and vigilance
- Can function on her own
- Is a player killer in slow drawn out games
- Once her impulse draw condition is met once for a player it’s always on, it’s very unlikely for a player to remove poison counters on themselves, as opposed to Neyali requiring a creature token to attack
- The cards she exiles can be used whenever as opposed to Neyali
Neyali’s advantages over Ixhel:
- Less color intensive, requires only 2 pips of colored mana to Ixhel’s three
- Gives creature tokens double strike
- Less set up required than Ixhel, it’s probably easier to get 3 attacking creature tokens than giving all opponents 3 poison counters each, but this can change with the upcoming set and cards” – BananaLinks
In terms of player’s initial reactions to Ixhel, many are excited about the implications with this Commander and more traditional Infect-style cards:
“Oh I really like the way it’s designed to function with old infect cards in a way that promotes a healthier interaction against multiple players. A lot of people don’t like Infect in commander since most strategies involving it is just a glass cannon one-shotting of one player and then just do nothing for the rest of the game. Now instead of dealing the 10 to one player the commander incentivizes you to distribute it between each opponent to accrue value and have everyone play the game rather than ending the game for a few players.”
Because each player needs to have three Poison Counters on them for Ixhel to start producing cards, traditional Infect Commander players have more of a reason not to Voltron someone out of the game. Infect can also end up being the deck’s win condition since it only takes ten damage to knock a player out of the game. The one tradeoff here is that anyone who plays with Infect tends to get hated out of the game pretty quickly. Either way, players are excited to see what these new Commanders, plus the unannounced exclusive cards in each deck, will bring to the game in early February!