The Lost Caverns of Ixalan, to put it bluntly, looks like a powerful set. Aside from some truly terrifying typal cards getting reprinted like Cavern of Souls, countless expensive reprints are popping up here and there. Further, some cards have already found potential homes in eternal formats, with many excited about the new Spelunking(unconfirmed name) card’s applications in Amulet Titan decks due to a complicated technicality.
Today, a new card was spoiled that, while unlikely to impact older formats in Modern in any way, should have some EDH players excited. This typal payoff can double the triggers of any creature type that the player chooses, and comes with a decent body resistant to removal. Let’s take a look at Mobile Throne!
Mobile Throne looks like a rather enticing card for typal fans. Considering that The Lost Caverns of Ixalan Commander decks have typal synergies as their focus already, Mobile Throne could be a natural fit into those decks… as long as the payoff is relevant enough. Spoiler alert: you will definitely want Mobile Throne in three of these decks, as long as the translation below is accurate.
Since the current available version of Mobile Throne is not in English, provided below is a translation of the card offered on Reddit:
“Artifact Creature – Golem (Rare)
As ~ enters the battlefield, choose a creature type.
~ is the chosen type in addition to its other types.
If a triggered ability of another creature of the chosen type you control triggers, it triggers an additional time.
Mobile Throne can cause triggered ability to trigger an additional time for the creature type of choice. One of the more common ways this is applied is to enters-the-battlefield, or ETB. To start, let’s look at this application of the card in this manner (which is also arguably the least valuable one).
Generally, double ETB effects are already very available for decks that want them. Effects like Panharmonicon, Virtue of Knowledge and Gandalf, the White have been printed with great fervor over the last few sets, so why play Mobile Throne over what is already available, especially considering that this one, unlike other options, is an easier-to-remove creature?
Ward 2 plays a big role here. Because of how prominent noncreature threats are in the Commander format, having flexible removal is a must. This means that the perk of dodging creature-based removal, while mattering, may not matter as much as you think. Good removal in Commander needs to be able to deal with a multitude of different strategies.
Ward 2 can make cheaper removal options a lot more costly to deploy. On the other hand, being a creature does open Mobile Throne to board wipes. This can make the Throne a little riskier to play with ETB strategies since there are so many other alternatives available. Where Mobile Throne really shines is when doubling triggers for creatures that are not ETB ones.
Out of all the creature types that want to use Mobile Throne for ETB triggers, the most obvious answer is Elementals. ETB effects are all over the place for the archetype with cards like Risen Reef and Omnath, Locus of Creation. Yarok, the Desecrated means that Elemental decks already have a way to award the ETB theme, but Mobile Throne just adds to it.
Like we’ve seen with Anointed Procession and Doubling Season being on the battlefield at the same time, replacement effects can stack, and that’s what Mobile Throne offers. Having Yarok and the Throne in play won’t render one of them useless. Both will trigger instead!
Mobile Throne in the New EDH Decks
Fortunately for decks that have ETB effects, there are already a lot of cards available to enable those strategies further. Mobile Throne’s real value excels in enabling other types of triggered abilities in typal decks. These have a lot less support than ETB triggers. Why not use this to copy some of the new Commanders’ abilities from The Lost Caverns of Ixalan?
Mobile Throne can be used to copy both of Admiral Brass, the Unsinkable’s triggers abilities. The first is triggered as an ETB effect, so the Throne sees it. The second, and much more notable ability, triggers at the beginning of combat. Mobile Throne offers a huge quality of life boost here, allowing you to return two fallen Pirates to the battlefield. Milling eight gives you more ammunition to use and, since this deck is a typal one, Mobile Throne can double any triggers that occur from Pirates getting reanimated.
Clavileno, First of the Blessed, also happens to host an ability that is triggered during combat. This is an incredibly valuable ability that can turn even a lowly 1/1 Vampire Token into card advantage and a much more powerful board presence. Just get that creature killed, and you suddenly draw a card and create a 4/3 flier.
The biggest drawback to Clavileno’s ability is the ‘whenever you attack’ clause on the card. This means that, regardless of how many Vampires you attack with, Clavileno will only turn one of your Vampires into a Vampire Demon. Mobile Throne can do a lot of heavy lifting here, doubling the trigger.
This actually ends up going a step further. Since this is, once again, a typal synergy, as long as you choose Vampire on entry, Mobile Throne won’t just double Clavileno’s triggers, but it will also double the triggers that Clavileno grants your chosen Vampires! Not only can you turn two creatures per combat into Vampire Demons, but those creatures, on death, will draw two cards and generate two tokens!
Hakbal of the Surging Soul also offers two triggered abilities. One triggers at the beginning of combat, allowing all of your Merfolk to Explore. the other offers ramp as well as card advantage.
Mobile Throne, at first glance, does less here than with the other Commanders. That said, on a large board, allowing each Merfolk to Explore twice can get out of hand pretty quickly. Notably, Mobile Throne itself gains the creature type of the type it chooses, so it will also Explore twice.
Doubling Hakbal’s other effect, while not as flashy as previous examples, should not be underestimated. This can ensure that you never run out of gas, while also allowing you to deploy gigantic spells easily.
Won’t Work Here
Unlike the other Commanders, Pantlaza’s trigger will not get copied by Mobile Throne.
Well, it technically does. Pantlaza will gain another opportunity to Discover X. The issue is the second line of text combined with the ‘may’ effect in the trigger.
This basically gives the player a choice of when to pull the ripcord on the Discover trigger. Maybe you want to wait for a larger Dino to enter the Battlefield, allowing you to Discover for a higher mana value. Therefore, the ‘may’ part of the effect allows the player to hold back their Discover trigger since it only occurs once each turn.
Once you choose to Discover, the triggers will be unable to Discover again in that turn. So, while Mobile Throne will successfully trigger the ability again, you can only use it to Discover once.
Mobile Throne, regardless, can trigger Pantlaza’s ability on its own, and can double the triggers of the other Dinos in the deck. We don’t quite know what the contents of the new Commander decks look like yet. This means that Mobile Throne’s utility in the new Veloci-Ramp-Tor deck is unclear. That said, the synergy between the Throne and the face Commanders of the other three decks alone should designate it as a relevant upgrade.
Keep an Eye on This One
Mobile Throne has a ton of versatility for any EDH deck with a typal theme and some triggered abilities. It already synergizes with three of the new face Commanders incredibly well, and should be considered as a roleplayer in the 99 of any deck utilizing those cards as Commanders. At least, any non cEDH deck doing so, but these Commanders may not be that powerful anyway.
Either way, Mobile Throne adds a new, versatile typal payoff that can reward any typal deck using triggered abilities on their typal creatures, whether they are ETB or not. Mobile Throne will be more valuable in the decks that feature triggered abilities that are harder to copy. For that reason, the Throne should definitely find a home somewhere.