Gargos, Vicious Watcher
– Core Set 2020
July 17, 2019
Commander [EDH]: 4.25
Ratings are based on a 1 to 5 scale. 1 is bad. 3 is average. 5 is great.
Gargos is big and heavy and actually kind of severely undercosted for all the things he does. It’s easy for people who have experience with the larger non-rotating formats to think of all the creatureless decks where his triggered ability doesn’t come up – and forget about the huge number of decks where it does come up. Seriously, if you’re a deck with some kind of creature but don’t have a Conclave Tribunal or similar effect handy, how do you stop this guy? Most decks have a hard time beating him in combat, unless they have dinosaurs (or, y’know, their own Gargos). If they do, he’s likely powered out some kind of massively-proportioned hydra, or maybe he takes their best creature with him. And if it’s safe to target him, your opponent has no creatures in play at all and they’re at risk of falling behind anyway. I think Gargos could very wll end up being a sleeper hit from M20.
If we’re just going by pure rate of return, Gargos is already a pretty absurd body: six mana for an 8/7 with vigilance is quite powerful, even factoring in Gargos costing three green mana. Good thing green can ramp, right?
But that’s not all this hydra has to offer, as it is the first Hydra “lord” we’ve gotten. And the lordship is pretty nice, making each Hydra a good bit cheaper. Since the multi-headed tribe is known for being expensive, a discount means great things for them being able to wreak more havoc. And it even has an interesting form of pseudo-protection, lashing out whenever one of your creatures is targeted. This likely makes any kill spell aimed at Gargos a one-for-one, and it also gives you the ability to use pump spells to kill more creatures.
I think Gargos, Vicious Watcher is very promising; it’s maybe expensive for Constructed, but it has a potent set of abilities that can allow it to take over a game. Triple-green is a bit awkward as far as mana costs go, but when that’s really the only gripe, it’s not much of one.
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