CardName – MODERN HORIZONS 2
Date Reviewed: June 4, 2021
Commander [EDH]: 3.67
Ratings are based on a 1 to 5 scale. 1 is bad. 3 is average. 5 is great.
Of all the unusual things about Chatterfang, the one that almost surprised me the most was the fact that he has forestwalk. It certainly fits flavor-wise, and can be quite relevant in the squirrel mirror match or the heavily Simicified Commander metagame. Speaking of which, I presume Commander’s color identity rules are one reason he has that activated ability, but it’s welcome regardless: adding black to squirrel decks shores up one of their traditional weaknesses, allowing you to hit sweepers with Duress. And the ability can be strong in itself – as we established yesterday, repeatable removal tends to be good, and it can be used offensively if you have a creature strong enough to survive.
I almost want to try him alongside something like Bitterblossom, to effectively double token creation every turn for “free”. I’m not sure that’s quite fast enough for a format like Modern, but it is an interesting thing to think about. There’s always the various Garruks in casual play, not to mention the hilariousness of combining him with Kiora the Crashing Wave’s emblem and saying “I call on an inexorable tide of krakens – and this squirrel.”
Apart from all that, I also hope somebody makes an alter of this guy as Tam MacBurl or Triss or another such squirrel from Redwall. I mean, if Wizards of the Coast is going to do Universes Beyond with Walking Dead and Warhammer and such, why ever not?
After many years, squirrels finally have their commander. In black border, at least; Unsanctioned‘s Acornelia, Fashionable Filcher is technically the first legendary squirrel, but Chatterfang is the one that’s playable at “proper” tables. And it’s a pretty intriguing creature, support for his tribe without being overbearing.
Three mana for a 3/3 with forestwalk is pretty interesting, and Chatterfang has the tools to be reliably unblockable (thanks to a certain land from Modern Horizons 2 we may review later…). He’s good at making an army of Squirrels, doubling their production while also making other token generators play well with his ability, and his black ability enables the couple of black squirrels to fit in the deck (either black- or silver-bordered) while functioning as removal (or a buff). Yes, the dream to fell Emrakul with 15 squirrels can move from meme to reality with Chatterfang, and I’m sure someone will pull this off at a kitchen table somewhere.
As for if squirrels can work in Modern (or Legacy)…not sure yet, and I’m not sure if Chatterfang is needed to make them work. They look to be a sort of pseudo-Elf swarm deck (focusing more on tokens than on actual permanents), and while Chatterfang can make a board of squirrels in record time, he is rather squishy (without help) and needs time to work. I’d say he and Squirrels can work as a rogue deck, but he’s unlikely to warp Modern around his long and swishy tail.
Constructed: 3 (probably high, but the deck has some promise)
Limited: 4.5 (I will guess that Squirrels are brutal in Limited)
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