Behold the Multiverse – Kaldheim
Date Reviewed: January 11, 2021
Commander [EDH]: 3.25
Ratings are based on a 1 to 5 scale. 1 is bad. 3 is average. 5 is great.
The thing that really makes this card unique is the foretell mechanic, so it’s worth us thinking about what that mechanic really means. The first thing that comes to my mind is hiding cards from mind-robber effects like Duress and Hypnotic Specter, though you’ll note that some of those are faster even than a two-mana foretell cost. The second thing that comes to my mind is spreading the cost of a card over multiple turns: Behold the Multiverse happens to do exactly that. This means you won’t be selecting it for decks that have to start at flame-speed, but rather ones that have a multiple-turn game plan and want to advance with dragon-thrift. That’s been a popular strategy in blue recently, and while it’s not likely to displace Ponder and Preordain in formats that have them, Behold the Multiverse will do good things for decks that don’t have those.
On its own, Behold the Multiverse is a decent rate of return: scry 2, draw 2 is generally priced at four mana for an instant-speed version of the effect, and so this meets that threshold rather nicely. The wrinkle is in Kaldheim‘s new set mechanic, foretell. If you’re willing to put a spell off for a turn, you can “cast” it face down and properly cast it on a future turn. The foretell bit, if I’m not mistaken, is an activated ability, while the actual casting for its foretell cost is a proper cast. Think of it as a sort-of morph, but for spells.
There is no discount to casting Behold the Multiverse for its foretell cost, but it does have the upshot of presenting hidden information and allowing you to, if you have two extra mana laying around, pop it for that bit of advantage later. Splitting a spell’s cost over two turns is definitely not unreasonable, and given that cards with foretell include a rather nice array of options (like countermagic), you can use this as a solid bluff. This is by no means a prospective multi-format all-star, but I actually quite like this. It plays well with the mechanic (and interacts with foretell’s pay-offs and enablers), and it’s a playable enough card without its mechanic.
Commander: 3.5 (foretell, in particular, plays well with the format’s fast artifact mana, like Sol Ring)
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