Ezio Auditore da Firenze
Ezio Auditore da Firenze

Ezio Auditore da Firenze– Universes Beyond: Assassin’s Creed

Date Reviewed:  July 5, 2024

Constructed: 3.0
Casual: 5.0
Limited: N/A
Multiplayer: 3.88
Commander [EDH]: 4.63

Ratings are based on a 1 to 5 scale. 1 is bad. 3 is average. 5 is great.

Reviews Below: 


When it comes to the Assassin’s Creed series, I’ve always liked the Ezio games best. The setting provided a lot of opportunities for stories and interactions, and Ezio himself has a good character arc. You can tell they’re from around 2010 when it comes to things like game mechanics (hold two buttons while moving to free-run?!), though it’s easy to forgive when you’re interacting with Leonardo da Vinci or taking over Rome one neighborhood at a time. I got starry-eyed while exploring the settings of Odyssey and Valhalla, and Black Flag is easily the best pirate game ever made, but Ezio is probably the face of the Assassin’s Creed franchise, for good reason.

Freerunning is the Assassin Brotherhood’s answer to ninjutsu, and Ezio makes it even more dangerous than that sounds. If he only granted it to assassins that wouldn’t ordinarily have it, that would be good; if he only reduced freerunning costs for anyone who usually does it for a higher one, that would also be good, but he does both. It’s also easy to miss that there’s no limit on the number of spells you can free-run off one damage trigger, and that the qualifying damage doesn’t have to be dealt by Ezio himself. There are a surprising number of eligible spells in the archives, even before you get into the Assassin’s Creed set, and a lot of those really weren’t intended to be cast for two mana.

The main tension in deckbuilding with Ezio is that maximizing his freerunning trigger requires a lot of black mana, and his “win the game” ability is very enticing yet requires all five colors. You don’t have to make your deck able to use both of them, but there are plenty of ways to incidentally include the chance of triggering the auto-win in your deck, and some of those don’t have much downside. Regardless of how you do it, Ezio can be devastatingly effective, and a lot of opponents are going to have little choice but to requiescat in pace.

Constructed: 3
Casual: 5
Limited: N/A
Multiplayer: 4
Commander [EDH]: 4.5

 James H. 


This set’s new cards are legal in Legacy Modern, and Vintage (and Commander), and it’s also a set unsuitable for drafting as a result of its seven-card boosters, so I’ll omit Limited scores.

The Universes Beyond sets are an interesting way to bring Magic‘s mechanics to a different trapping and sometimes give older cards flavorful reprints. Assassin’s Creed is a franchise I’m tangentially aware of…I know that the stories are intricate and era-spanning webs of intrigue, and I know of its main character, but I’m not as sharp on all the minutiae and apologize if I get things wrong.

Ezio Auditore Da Firenze starts us out, the protagonist of Assassin’s Creed II and a rather ubiquitous presence besides, befitting his role as the leader of the Italian Brotherhood of Assassins. Despite nominally being black, his triggered ability does make him all 5 colors, a deliberate way to let you run the most stabulous Commander deck you possibly can, and that seems appropriate for him and his role in the narrative.

As for Ezio himself…he’s pretty good. Menace is a way for him to get through blockers and potentially proc his second ability, letting you vomit in a bunch of stabby friends from your hand. Keep in mind that it’s a passive that he doesn’t need to have been on board for at first, so in theory you can drop Ezio on your second main phase and then follow up with your entire hand. His triggered ability is by no means terrible, delivering the fatal blow to someone on the brink of death, but it’s mostly not the main attraction.

I feel like the playstyle Ezio is going for is more of an Assassin swarm style; he’s quite cheap as a creature, and letting you use freerunning to cheat on mana costs can make for quite a big swing, even as early as turn 3 or 4. I do think he’s probably not going to be much of a force in Legacy or Modern; you’ll catch someone off-guard once, but the format tends to demand your small creatures swarm just a bit better than Ezio and his posse can. He might have some legs as a rogue (heh) option, but he’s going to be great in Commander. 

Constructed: 3 (maybe high, but there are fun things you can do)
Casual: 5
Limited: N/A
Multiplayer: 3.75
Commander [EDH]: 4.75 (basically the Assassin commander)

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