4, Apr, 24

MTG Desert Bloom Precon Card Turns all Your Lands into Deserts!

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Article at a Glance

We are now at the final stage of Outlaws of Thunder Junction spoiler season. Thanks to the unexpected second Bonus Sheet, this particular MTG set has made for a really packed two weeks.

Of the four Commander deck themes previously unveiled, the most interesting one for many players revolves around Deserts. The Desert land type has not received a ton of support over the years as it seldomly appears within sets. The Amonkhet Block was the last one where Deserts played a larger role.

With Outlaws of Thunder Junction being Wild West themed, there’s no question that Deserts can make a thematic return in this set. Here are the new cards appearing in the Desert Bloom Commander deck!

A Quick Recap

Yuma, Proud Protector

We’ve already seen Yuma, Proud Protector, but since this is the intended face Commander for the set, it’s important that we take another quick look at him.

Yuma works best with decks that want to get lands into the grave. Thanks to the presence of Fetch Lands, we could easily see Yuma finding a place in Landfall decks that can run it. That said, Yuma really does need a Desert subtheme to excel. As long as Deserts are consistently hitting your grave, Yuma turns into a one-card army. Offering card advantage and a win condition, this Commander seems like an excellent choice.

Turn Your Lands into Deserts

Dune Chanter isn’t too great outside of a deck that really cares about Deserts, but this is a gamechanger for decks that do. Dune Chanter makes Yuma go absolutely nuts since every land you own becomes a Desert. Dune Chanter also does a mediocre Chromatic Lantern impression, which can be quite good in budget lists. Finally, Dune Chanter can enable Yuma’s ability to create plants with its activated ability.

If you’re running Yuma as a Commander, or your deck cares about Deserts, Dune Chanter is a great inclusion. If not, this is forgettable.

Card Advantage Forever

Embrace the Unknown could easily find itself in a handful of different Commander decks. Any deck that has an abundance of self mill, lands, or cares about Impulse draws could want this card. Three mana for two Impulse draws is not too great, especially when two mana sorceries like Wrenn’s Resolve already exist that do the same thing. Retrace is the big selling point of Embrace the Unknown, allowing you to turn extra lands into card advantage. Due to this, Embrace the Unknown becomes a great tool to fight against flooding.

While this could be a decent inclusion in any Commander deck with flooding issues, Embrace the Unknown should do a good amount of work in any deck that synergizes further with it.

Craterhoof ‘At Home’ for Landfall

If you were looking for a Craterhoof Behemoth for land decks, then Rumbleweed is for you. This can easily win the game on a wide board, and can cost as little as one mana. The lack of Haste is a major downside in comparison to Craterhoof, but dumping this into play after a massive turn from a landfall deck should be somewhat trivial, and can kill someone outright. Overrun has been killing people for years, and Overrun on a gigantic body that can come at a discount is terrifying.

Angel of Indemnity

This card is expensive. Angel of Indemnity definitely has its place, but the Encore effect really needs to be doing work for this card to be worthwhile. That said, in the right deck, Angel of Indemnity’s Encore effect can easily win the game on the spot, so it definitely has a place somewhere.

Frankly, six mana for a 5/5 Flying Angel and an extra permanent with mana value four or greater is ok, but not great. That said, thanks to Encore creating multiple token copies of Angel of Indemnity, it can bring back multiple permanents, easily enabling infinite combos. If your deck has a self-mill theme, this card is easily worth considering.

Sand Scout

Sand Scout is another interesting support card for Desert matters decks. Sand Scout offers the general white ‘ramp’ ability that catches up to opponents. While this is fine, the second ability is more so where Sand Scout excels.

Players were rather excited for the return of Sand Warrior tokens, and Sand Scout is the card that produces them. Sand Scout plays exceptionally well with Fetch Lands, creating a Sand Warrior each time a land hits your grave from anywhere. Sadly, this effect only triggers once per turn, but that is easily compensated for by cracking lands on each player’s turn. Sand Scout will definitely find a place in some niche decks, but otherwise just seems fine, not great.

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Cataclysmic Prospecting

Cataclysmic Prospecting is disappointing. Unless you can consistently create at least a few tapped Treasure Tokens from this card, it’s definitely not worth it. There are so many more efficient board wipes than this one in the Commander format. Blasphemous Act is a fantastic example.

Unless you specifically want X spells, or are heavily into the Deserts matter theme, I would pass on this.

Cactus Preserve

Cactus Preserve is a rather strange land. There are certainly decks that want this, but even in those, this is not a massive addition. That said, a tapped Reflective Pool that can occasionally be a relevant threat is generally worth it in casual level Commander.

If your deck doesn’t care about Deserts, and doesn’t have a Commander with at least a mana value of six, you’re probably not interested in this card. If Cactus Preserve didn’t enter the battlefield tapped, this would be an absolutely incredible land.

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Plant-Based EDH

If you’ve ever wanted to make a Plant-based EDH deck, Kirri, Talented Sprout is your chance to do so! With some support, Kirri can buff your board and make sure you don’t run out of gas. If you don’t want your deck to rely too heavily on your Commander, Kirri probably scratches that itch. The card also acts as a win condition as well as card advantage, which is generally all you can ask for.

Last, But not Least

Vengeful Regrowth similarly works well in decks that have land grave synergies, or has a self-mill theme. Regrowth both ramps and creates threats, which can help Commander decks that need to get past six mana to access their game-ending threats. For this to work, though, you really need to be able to maximize the ability. Returning even two lands with Vengeful Regrowth makes it a lot worse since it also affects the number of threats you create. If you can maximize this card consistently, it could be an interesting inclusion to your Commander deck. If not, look elsewhere.

In-Depth Review On its Way

This gives a quick first impression of each of the new cards that Desert Bloom has to offer, but our thoughts on the overall deck have yet to come. What we can say, however, is that there are some interesting Landfall reprints like Oracle of Mul Daya and Ramunap Excavator awaiting those who decide to purchase this product.

All in all, there are some interesting cards coming to Magic in Desert Bloom. Embrace the Unknown, Rumbleweed and Angel of Indemnity all look like cards that will find a home across some different archetypes.

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