Ancient Imperiosaur – March of the Machine
Date Reviewed: April 18, 2023
Commander [EDH]: 3.50
Ratings are based on a 1 to 5 scale. 1 is bad. 3 is average. 5 is great.
As somebody who’s played more than one different Muraganda Petroglyphs deck over the past 15 years, March of the Machine‘s references to that plane really tickled me. (And other sets, apparently – according to the MTG Multiverse Project, M20’s Sorcerer of the Fang is actually a reference to Muraganda, too!)
As for Ancient Imperiosaur, you know I’m always up for more dinosaurs, and while the tribe as a whole tends towards the expensive side, this guy plays more interestingly than some of the other dinosaurs with similar costs. The option of powering him out early with convoke gives you a pretty substantial bonus, and ward mitigates the risk of doing so as opponents are less likely to have two spare mana to use their cheap removal spell. Playing him more “fairly”, late in the game, is not disappointing as such, because his stats are still solid – it’ll be important to remember that sometimes that’ll be the better play, like if you’re expecting a lot of sweepers from the opponent. I think this card has some good prospects, not least because there are plenty of potential token-generating cards to partner with.
Commander [EDH]: 3.5
Convoke is back as a pretty substantial mechanic in March of the Machine, and Ancient Imperiosaur is quite a payoff for it. If you do the math, a full convocation of seven creatures casting this will make for a 20/20…with some protection besides and trample to mitigate attempts to fetter it. Any sort of big threat that can’t just die to a stiff breeze is attractive enough, and even just as a seven-mana 6/6 with trample and ward 2, it’s passable enough.
I feel like there’s going to be a bit of a “sweet spot” in terms of how high you want to convoke this. If you’re playing on-curve, this can feasibly come out on turn 4 as a 12/12 or bigger, and while it might lack subtlety, that’s still an impressive amount of power with which to ram through a board. It’s certainly not subtle, but it does possess just about all of the things you could want in a big creature (besides more solid protection, but ward can be enough of an impediment in a pinch to get Ancient Imperiosaur some breathing room).
Constructed: 4 (might be a bit high, but it plays well with green’s usual gameplan and comes online surprisingly quickly)
Commander [EDH]: 3.5
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