Invasion of New Phyrexia / Teferi Akosa of Zhalfir
– March of the Machine
Date Reviewed: May 9, 2023
Commander [EDH]: 3.63
Ratings are based on a 1 to 5 scale. 1 is bad. 3 is average. 5 is great.
I imagine we won’t be getting Teferi planeswalker cards for a little while, so it’s good that he’s doing something rather different this time. If you haven’t heard, I won’t spoil the exact reason why, but it seems like any future appearances will likely be in a different form.
This is an interesting card (interesting cards plural?) because the front side is actually quite powerful, to the extent that you don’t always care whether you can defeat the battle or not. A large enough value of X is either an instant combat stall that’ll get you enough time to find a winning play, or a massive attack on the next couple of turns. Conveniently, it’s also a powerful way to attack and flip the battle into Teferi Akosa of Zhalfir. It’s worth saying again: I did not expect him to have a knight tribal effect. But the fact that he does – and has two other abilities useful in creature decks – makes Invasion of New Phyrexia a legitimate reason to play blue in knight tribal decks. I hope you held on to your Azorius Knight-Arbiters after those Ravnica Allegiance drafts!
Commander [EDH]: 3.5
Invasion of New Phyrexia is, at its core, blue/white Knight support. Costing only two mana at base, but with six defense, cracking this is meant to be a bit more of an investment. But five mana total gets you the power to flip this on your next turn, and there is still a pretty ice amount of scaling baked into this battle. It might not generate bodies as quickly as Secure the Wastes did, but it generates stronger bodies overall.
Once this does flip, Teferi Akosa of Zhalfir keeps the Knight support train rolling, starting with a -2 that gives a static buff to all of your Knights for the rest of the game. Soft protection on top of a power buff is a great way to thumb the scales in your favor, and this works well with all Knights…like the ones you spat out with Invasion of New Phyrexia. His +1 is mostly card filtration, but effective enough, while his -3 is a potent bit of “convoke” removal that can take a pesky battle or planeswalker out of the equation (or creature, of course).
I definitely think Invasion of New Phyrexia is strong; it’s an “army in a can” with some added upsides once the army gets poured out. It’s not a battle that needs to flip to be useful, but it is useful when it does, and I think it’ll see a lot of play. Particularly after Wilds of Eldraine comes along, given that I imagine knights aplenty wil show up there.
Limited: 5 (put enough mana into this, and they’re not breaking through)
Commander [EDH]: 3.75
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