– Rivals of Ixalan
January 16, 2018
Commander [EDH]: 2.58
Ratings are based on a 1 to 5 scale.
1 is bad. 3 is average. 5 is great.
This is a very interesting sort of ability – and I do mean that in a good way. It is actually getting sort of close to the kind of ability you might see in an Un-set, just because one of the staples of those sets involves looking at things that are unusual to look at. (Compare the version of Knight of the Kitchen Sink that has protection from two-word names.) It also kind of fulfills another of my constant refrains, which is more cards for singleton formats. In such settings, it’s entirely plausible to have every land in your deck have a different name from every other – sometimes even in a two-color deck – and this guy will get out of control pretty fast. Without evasive abilities, he can be dealt with more easily than a lot of other hyper-efficient cards, but your opponent will need to start finding blockers fast.
This card’s ability feels like it came from Unstable. In a perfect world you’ll be getting a 4/4 on turn 4. A bit underwhelming but nothing wrong with that. The nice thing about this card is that it grows as the game goes on. An 8/8 for 4 mana sounds a lot better. Since it’s an artifact it can go into any deck, but I theorize the two best decks are polar opposites. Using a colorless Commander gives you access to a plethora of powerful lands to choose from. Playing a 5 color decks means you always can play this card despite what colors you have access to as well the benefit of being able to play every land ever printed, although fetch lands make it a bit moot. I think this card was designed to play well with the flip lands. Maybe if it had another ability that triggered when lands transformed it would be more blunt.
I’ll be honest: Awakened Amalgam is far worse than it looks.
Let’s start with the “ideal” case: this is a 4/4 for 4, with no combat abilities, on turn 4, with the potential to scale into a much bigger threat as the game goes on. The problem is that the case for this is rarely “ideal”, regardless of format.
It’s a clever trap, but a trap all the same. Give it a wide berth.
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