Zendikar Rising is right around the corner and it’s chock full of excellent new cards for your commander decks. We here at the Command Beacon thought we’d share some of the cards we’re most looking forward to trying out in our decks and brews. Without further ado, let’s have a look at the selections:
Leyline Tyrant: A 4/4 flier for 4 that can bank red mana similar to Omnath, Locus of Mana . This guy pairs well with rituals and Braid of Fire , and is a perfect fit for mono-red decks like Purphoros, Bronze Blooded.
Ashaya, Soul of the Wild: Not only will Ashaya increase your available mana but it will give you landfall triggers from your nontoken creatures entering the battlefield. There’s a lot of combo potential here, and it comes with the added bonus of protecting your creatures from spells like Cyclonic Rift.
Moraug, Fury of Akoum: Play a land and get an extra combat. It doesn’t get much simpler than that really. Expect to see a lot of this minotaur warrior, and you’d best hope you’re not on the wrong side of the table.
Felidar Retreat: Continuing on with the landfall theme, this is a great card for those struggling white decks out there. Playing a land can start to build up a small army or pump the team like a mini Cathar’s Crusade. Definitely one of the better white cards in the set.
Omnath, Locus of Creation: Omnath just keeps getting stronger and this time he moves in to fill a void that many players have been asking for: More non-partner 4 colour commander options! With card draw, lifegain, mana ramp and burn, he really does everything. The best part for Omnath fans is that this isn’t even his final form! Who knows what he’ll bring to the table once black mana enters the mix?
Ancient Greenwarden: Commander is a singleton format, so having functional extra copies of cards is helpful. Here we have a Ramunap Excavator that’s been hitting the Kaladesh gym and deadlifting Panharmonicons. Double the landfall, double the value.
Glasspool Mimic: Clones are cool, especially at low CMC’s. If you enjoy getting maximum value out of giant creatures with even bigger enter the battlefield effects, they’re always a solid include. Having one stapled to a land when you need one is a nice bonus.
Lithoform Engine: One of the stronger generic commander cards we’ve seen in a while, this is just the kind of card you would expect to see in a lot of decks. Commander players love copy abilities and this will be seen in casual, value-centric decks and faster combo decks for sure.
Zareth San, the Trickster: Who doesn’t love a sneaky new dimir commander? Not only is this a more casual version of popular competitive commander Yuriko, the Tiger’s Shadow but it can work well in the 99 of the new rogue tribal commander, Anowon the Ruin Thief. I’d recommend Command Beacon to get him into your hand, and the Command Beacon Website to get inspiration for your deck!
Archon of Emeria: Good hatebears are more needed than ever as the overall power level of cards increases. This archon is a 2/3 flier for 3 who brings everyone down to one spell per turn and slows down greedy nonbasic manabases. A good option for a lot of different hatebear commanders like Gaddock Teeg or Lavinia, Azorius Renegade.
DR. PEACE’S PICKS
Feed the Swarm: As a mono-black player at heart, of course this is going to make the top of my list. While there’s definitely room for debate, black finally has access to some generic enchantment removal that just-barely fits within some interpretations of the colour pie!
Forsaken Monument: Infinite combos with Basalt Monolith aside, what a fantastic card to immediately add to my Kozilek, the Great Distortion deck! It also pairs amazingly well with one of my favourite colourless cards, Retrofitter Foundry, thanks to the anthem effect and the ability to make extra colourless mana.
Linvala, Shield of Sea Gate: I think people are definitely sleeping on this card. If you ignore the party mechanic altogether, you have a 3/3 Flying for 3 that can give hexproof OR indestructible to all your creatures for the turn! It’s an upgraded Selfless Spirit in almost every way from a commander perspective. She even pairs just as well with Sun Titan!
Crawling Barrens: While I was expecting to see more creature-lands in the set, I can’t say I’m disappointed with this. Not having to animate it every time you activate it makes it more difficult to remove, and a powerful generic mana sink. Expect to see a lot of this card in pretty much any deck that has the space as there’s very little downside to playing it.
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Agadeem’s Awakening: I think the mythic land cycle is strong. Very, very strong. Hopefully they won’t be format warping, but they’re a pretty easy slot-in for most mono-colour edh decks. I’ll definitely need a foil copy for my Liliana, Heretical Healer deck!
That about wraps up our top picks from the new Zendikar Rising Set. Pre-release is right upon us and these new cards are about to start making their way out into the wild fields of commander. What do you think about these new cards? Feel there’s something huge we overlooked? Be sure to let us know in the comments, and as always, happy deck building!