Glimpse of Nature – Champions of Kamigawa
Date Reviewed: February 25, 2021
Commander [EDH]: 3.37
Ratings are based on a 1 to 5 scale. 1 is bad. 3 is average. 5 is great.
We’re so used to this ability appearing in green – even the viking elves Commander pre-constructed deck has Beast Whisperer – that we forget there was a time when it was new and exciting and shocking and controversial. Whatever else you think of Champions of Kamigawa, you should give it credit for Glimpse of Nature. Such a simple text box, such enormous implications. It’s arguably lackluster in many game states, but this is more than made up for by the times when you have the mana and cheap creatures to draw your entire deck and overrun the opponent in one attack step. Craterhoof Behemoth might be the card that delivers the Hel-stroke, but Glimpse of Nature is the one that breaks the shield.
It might look innocent, but Glimpse of Nature is anything but. The key card in Legacy Elves, this card enables the deck to explode hard in a single turn, by chaining together a surfeit of cheap creatures (alongside the likes of Heritage Druid to enable those creatures to become mana that turn). Elves is largely a combo deck that aims to explode in a single massive turn, going into the Natural Order/Craterhoof Behemoth pairing, and this is the grease that gets the gears turning, so to speak. While it only lasts a single turn, making it seem underwhelming at first, the game may well be over if the Glimpse of Nature player is ready to roll. It even stacks with additional copies of itself.
This is definitely a “combo piece” card. In a fair deck, Glimpse of Nature is probably not worth all that much, even if cantripping your creature spells for a turn isn’t an awful effect. It shines when you can chain together a surfeit of small creatures, though, and that’s the reason for Glimpse being banned in Modern to this day; if it’s good in a deck, it’s nearly busted, and that’s probably true for a lot of Kamigawa‘s strong cards.
Constructed: 5 (it’s arguably the reason Elves works in Legacy, and the deck gets a lot worse without this spell on hand)
Commander: 3.75 (not the strongest Commander spell, since most decks aren’t optimized to make this work, but I could see an Elf shell doing very rude things with this)
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