Today marks the beginning of the Wilds of Eldraine spoiler season! There are some seriously powerful tools that Wizards of the Coast has given us to look at to kick off the start of Wilds of Eldraine’s reveal.
From cards that tutor and cast the target for free, to new powerful Stax creatures that lock your opponents down with Auras, there is a lot of interesting cards to see in Wilds of Eldraine. Let’s take a look!
Will, Scion of Peace
One of the core characters of the Wilds of Eldraine Story, Will is trying to restore the balance of Eldraine through more peaceful means after the passing of Kenrith, the Returned King thanks to the Phyrexian Invasion. By acquiring the title of ‘High King,’ Will can try to mend the broken Eldraine back together. He wants to do so through means of diplomacy and alliances to avoid spilling more blood.
Lifegain synergies definitely have their fans, and Will is absolutely incredible in a lifegain package. Able to reduce all of your white and blue spells by the amount of life you gain in a turn, Will offers absolutely incredible combo potential in the right frame. For that reason, Will looks like a great addition to lifegain themed EDH decks.
Will Will make an impact on constructed play? There isn’t really a deck right now that Will slots into, so some brewing would need to be done. The big things restricting Will from being a better combo enabler in constructed is that his activated ability needs to be done at sorcery speed (honestly, this card might be too good if it were instant speed), and Will cannot use this ability when he has summoning sickness. That said, even gaining a few points of life can make Will’s activated ability an absolute monster.
Rowan, Scion of War
Wilds of Eldraine is definitely Rowan’s villain arc and, without spoiling too much, this desparked Legendary Creature is more interested in ruling through fear and power. As such, the Rakdos coloring of this card seems greatly appropriate.
Thanks to the difference in opinion to her brother Will on the best way of ruling Eldraine, they are now fighting each other Urza/Mishra style over their mismatched ideas. If you want to read more about it, you can do so over on Wizards of the Coast’s main site.
Rowan is an incredible combo piece. This card is ludicrously scary alongside Bolas’s Citadel. The card is causing you to lose life, which can reduce the cost of spells cast by it with Rowan. Just activate this ability at a precise point where it can do the most that it can without you losing too much life.
Do note that thanks to Rowan’s restriction of only reducing the casting cost of red and black spells, you won’t really be casting free spells with this card. Regardless, there are a lot of powerful card advantage engines that reduce life that Rowan can take advantage of.
Sadly, Rowan does have the same issues as Will regarding summoning sickness and sorcery speed. That said, this ability is likely a lot easier to enable alongside other powerful effects in constructed formats. Whether it will see play there is questionable.
Kellan, the Fae-Blooded
The true protagonist to the Wilds of Eldraine story, Kellan, the Fae-Blooded offers a very powerful on-curve set of Adventure spell and creature aimed to enable to Boros Equipment archetype. Sadly, I am unsure if this card has a place outside of Commander.
There is the potential for this card to see play in a weird Hammertime brew in Pioneer, but the support that equipment has in Modern makes this card obsolete in that format. Standard support for equipment is likely too lacking at this point, but the Lord ability of Kellan in regards to equipment could make for an interesting aggressive deck alongside ‘For Mirrodin!’ options from Phyrexia: All WIll Be One. My guess is that this would not be good enough, however.
Commander players can use Kellan as a toolbox option in equipment decks, which are pretty commonly attached to Voltron strategies. This seems like a great Sunforger finder to get some real value rolling in any deck, equipment focused or not, that aims to use that card properly.
Eriette of the Charmed Apple
We’ve seen this gorgeous artwork from Magali Villeneuve a few times now in various Wilds of Eldraine streams. Its nice to finally see the name behind the face, so to speak.
In terms of the Wilds of Eldraine story, Eriette plays a major role, but we won’t get into that too much as to spoil the contents.
Eriette is also a good representation as to what the Orzhov draft archetype is aiming to do: interact with Auras as a from of enabling Bargain mechanics. You can read more about Bargain in our mechanics-related article here.
Eriette is a scary Stax piece that is going to slow down and ultimately take over a lot of limited games. The card shouldn’t be too difficult to deal with in constructed since it dies to a summer breeze. This could also make for an interesting Stax-y Commander since the effects are rather conditional. Sure, the card would be better with less steps involved, but it could promote some unfun play patterns in that case. Either way, this seems like a very cool way to take Orzhov Auras for interested players.
Agatha of the Vile Cauldron
Agatha of the Vile Cauldron works best alongside two things: a theme of increasing the power of Agatha or other activated abilities. Ideally, Agatha should be easily be able to enable infinite combos by reducing the cost of other creature’s activated abilities much like Training Grounds. That said, with some power boosts to Agatha, she can easily become a win condition with a go-wide strategy. Agatha is also able to reduce her own activated ability, and her ability can be activated multiple times. This means Agatha, with some setup, can give your entire board Haste, Trample and a significant buff.
Three Blind Mice
Three Blind Mice is a rare fairy tale saga that is very apt for token decks. Creating two copies of a token you control with three mana is very powerful – imagine creating two copies of the token generated by Wrenn and Seven in Standard! Of course, this is also a very specific example, which is to say that this card does need some setup for maximum value.
At its worst, however, Three Blind Mice creates three Mouse tokens and gives them all a buff on the fourth turn, which is pretty good in a Limited environment. Of course, with all the Role tokens that Eldraine is messing with, chances are that this card will be more flexible than that. All in all, this seems like a great partner to Wedding Announcement, and could see play in an enchantment deck.
Syr Armont, the Redeemer
Syr Armont, the Redeemer is great for showing off the new Monster Role token type. Reading the card explains the card in this instance, but if you want to read more about the new Role tokens, we covered it all in a seperate article. This seems like a strong Limited card but will likely see no play outside of that.
Beseech the Mirror
Ok, this card is all kinds of messed up. Beseech the Mirror was previously leaked and had Storm players freaking out since they now basically get a free copy of an extender or a Tendrils of Agony. The Bargain cost, while a real cost, is basically mute in Legacy thanks to the number of fast mana pieces you can sacrifice once you’re done with them.
There’s a lot of speculation that Vintage and Legacy won’t be the only formats impacted by Beseech the Mirror, and that wouldn’t be too surprising. For four mana you get to search your library for a card. History tells us this rate is not great.
Sacrificing an artifact, enchantment or token will allow you to immediately cast the searched spell for free should its mana value be four or lower. This in Standard can turn into extra copies of Sheoldred, the Apocalypse. It can turn into The One Ring in Modern! This probably won’t be the last time we talk about this card.
A final note, Beseech the Mirror can also be used to cast Cascade-style cards like Living End and Crashing Footfalls.
Decadent Dragon is an absolutely incredible value engine. The card is a 4/4 Trampling Flier that generates Treasure Tokens (which can add mana or enable Bargain), but it also just takes two of your opponent’s cards with Expensive Taste. This seems absolutely busted in Limited and could be good enough to see play in Standard.
Faunsbane Troll isn’t the next card to end a format, but its a solid multicolored payoff for Limited that could also see play in an appropriately themed Commander deck or even potentially Standard. The Troll comes down as a 5/5 for 4, which is already a fantastic rate. You can choose to sacrifice the Monster Role that the troll comes down with to remove something else via fighting it. All-in-all, a solid card.
Hylda, the Icy Crown
This card has the potential to get out of control if you let it. Hylda of the Icy Crown cares about you tapping down your opponent’s creatures. As long as you do so and have an extra mana to throw around, Hylda turns into a one-card army. In a control setting, Hylda can offer a stream of card selection and draw. A style of ‘freeze’ control with instant speed tapping effects could easily be envisioned with a card like this.
Perhaps even better is the potential for this card to straight-up start creating 4/4 elementals. If you run into this card at your Wilds of Eldraine Prerelease, best you wipe it out before it does too much damage. Even one Elemental makes this an insane value play.
Restless Cottage is the second of a new manland cycle that appears to be featured in Wilds of Eldraine. The card is rather middling-creating a 4/4 and offering to create a Food and exile a card from a graveyard on attack. Standard doesn’t have multicolored manlands available right now, so this could see play there. The card is probably not good enough to see play elsewhere.
Syr Ginger, the Meal Ender
This little cookie really hates Planeswalkers. While the card is incredible in that situation, Syr Ginger has some interesting applications with the ability to grow on the death of other artifacts you control.
Syr Ginger is a lot better than it may look, though. The card becomes utterly untouchable if the opponent has a Planeswalker and, considering that cheap Planeswalkers like Wrenn and Six and Karn the Great Creator are a big part of multiple formats, this could be a great way to combat those threats at minimum. At maximum, if this card is built around, it could become an un-interactable win condition.
Honestly, the text on Syr Ginger makes me the most excited to see what it does in the Wilds of Eldraine story. We know Ashiok is skulking around Eldraine, and it would be pretty comical to see her meet her match in a cookie knight.
The Goose Mother
What a terrifying name for a creature, but the card seems pretty powerful. The Goose Mother scales with the amount of mana you have and can create some Food that can later be used to draw cards. Even as a 4/4 for 4, this card flies and can replace itself. That’s pretty good!
I wouldn’t expect to see this card in older than Standard formats outside of a Food synergy deck, but the card seems like a great option in Token Commander decks, Limited and Standard. In the right shell, The Goose Mother could easily see play in something else. That said, a first look makes this card appear too slow.
A Card for Commander Players
Whelp, MTG designer Mark Rosewater spoiled that we would be seeing the return of every Commander player’s favorite Panharmonicon mechanic. Here it is on an enchantment Adventure! Rosewater also mentioned that Adventures would be returning on a new card type. Considering that we already knew that Wilds of Eldraine would be enchantment-focused, enchantment adventures aren’t too surprising, but it doesn’t take away from what this card is capable of.
The Virtue of Knowledge features a Panharmonicon ability that impacts any triggers that you control that trigger from a permanent (not just yours) entering the battlefield. You will get a copy of these triggers to do whatever you want with. There are a ton of Commander decks that probably want this, with the only real limit to its applications being that it has blue in its color identity.
The adventure spell is incredibly useful in Panharmonicon-style decks as well. If you have a value play to make before you drop your Virtue of Knowledge, you can use Vantress Visions to get a copy of it. This also works with any kind of triggered ability (no need for permanents to enter the battlefield), so I can easily see myself using this in my adventures EDH deck to copy a Lucky Clover trigger – which will also copy this spell to copy another Clover trigger. Seems powerful if you ask me.
Beluna offers an interesting Temur Commander card that can supply a mass amount of adventures off of its spell. The giant also reduces the casting cost of other Adventure permanent spells and, overall is available as a 4/4 for 3, which is a great rate. This can both refill your hand in an Adventure-themed deck and presents a great on-curve threat that amplifies your curve. Seek Thrills being an instant speed spell makes this card a lot more interesting than it may first appear.
Expel all Interlopers
This unique board wipe might work best in decks that have a lot of small creatures. Battle of Bywater was intended for a similar purpose in Lord of the Rings: Tales of Middle-earth. Expect to find this card in Commander decks that utilize a lot of small creatures for a one-sided boardwipe effect.
Lich-Knights’ Conquest is a mass-Bargain effect – the only one in the entire Wilds of Eldraine set. This is a cool build-around card that can turn a mass of tokens into an army of incredible creatures that could easily end the game on the spot. This could enable a new Standard archetype.
A White Beast Within
Beast Within is one of the more powerful removal options in Commander. As we discussed recently, Commander removal needs to be able to answer all kinds of different types of threats nowadays, which makes cards like Beast Within very good.
Stroke of Midnight is even better! Instead of offering a 3/3 beast in place of the fallen permanent, opponents will only get a 1/1 white Human!
Troyan, Gutsy Explorer
Troyan, Gutsy Explorer is a good indication of what Simic is meant to be in Wilds of Eldraine Limited – spend a lot of mana to cast big things. The card can ramp up to your powerful spells quickly and loot away some lands in other situations. All in all, the card seems fine.
Totentanz, Swarm Piper
There appear to be a lot of Rat synergies in this set. Totentanz seems great in a limited setting – offering the potential to create a troubling amount of Rat tokens which can then gain Deathtouch to get in for damage.
This card represents the Rakdos Limited archetype, which appears to be the typal one that Rosewater hinted at. This is a Rat Token aggro theme, so expect a lot of goodies for Rat typal in Commander.
Sharae of Numbing Depths
As may have been suggested by the presence of Hylda earlier, Azorius cares about tapping your opponents creatures in Limited. Sharae will instantly slow a creature down and replace itself while threatening to draw more cards as the game progresses. This seems like a powerful option in Limited.
Ruby, Daring Tracker
Gruul in Wilds of Eldraine Limited is all about synergizing with creatures that have four or more power.
Obyra, Dreaming Duelist
Obyra, Dreaming Duelist, while just being an interesting card for Faerie Typal decks, also represents the Dimir archetype for Wilds of Eldraine Limited – Faerie Typal.
Neva, Stalked by Nightmares
Bargain and Sacrifice appears to be the theme for Orzhov in Limited. Neva enables this by both growing when Roll tokens die and returning resources to your hand.
Greta Sweettooth Scourge
Golgari, like the last Eldraine set, cares about Food synergies in Limited. Greta offers the potential to grow creatures and draw cards in exchange for Food Tokens.
Ash, Party Crasher
In traditional Boros fashion, Ash, Party Crasher wants to go wide and have two nonland permanents enter the battlefield at the same time. This shows off the new Celebration mechanic and shows off the Boros archetype in Wilds of Eldraine Limited.
Johann, Apprentice Wizard
Izzet in Wilds of Eldraine Limited is also an archetype that players can expect – instants, sorceries and Adventures. Izzet in Commander Legends: Battle for Baldur’s Gate had a very similar flavor.
All the Other Stuff
There were more cards spoiled at the beginning of the Wilds of Eldraine spoiler season, but we don’t have time to cover all of them in detail. Regardless, with what we’ve seen so far, this set looks surprisingly powerful and appears to offer a few new Commander staples and Standard churn at the absolute least. Hopefully Wizard’s newest addition to their 30-year legacy offers some positive change to multiple formats, but Beseech the Mirror looks really scary.