Life from the Loam
Life from the Loam

CardName – Ravnica Remastered

Date Reviewed:  January 10, 2024

Constructed: 4.38
Casual: 4.00
Limited: 2.25
Multiplayer: 3.50
Commander [EDH]: 4.00

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

Reviews Below: 


Life from the Loam is the most “fair” of the dredge cards, and it doesn’t really fit well in the combo versions of the deck. I remember seeing a couple of people use it in the Standard version of the deck, back in Kamigawa-Ravnica Standard, where it was partly there to have an additional card with a dredge number of 3 or higher and partly as a sort of emergency option to start the chain by casting it for zero targets on the second turn. But it really came into its own in the bigger formats with more nonbasic lands, plus the fact that its actual effect is rare among Magic cards and costed inconsistently. Two mana to recur three lands is shockingly efficient when you pause and think about it. Extended had Assault Loam with Seismic Assault; Legacy has Wasteland and plenty more besides. So there’s an interesting trivia category that Life from the Loam seems to fit into: the only dredge card that’s being used for what the designers probably intended!

Constructed: 4
Casual: 4
Limited: 2
Multiplayer: 3.5
Commander [EDH]: 3.5

 James H. 


Out of the 10 mechanics introduced in the first Ravnica block, dredge quickly became the biggest problem, unlocking a whole new world of self-mill strategies that wrought horror and terror for years to come. While Life from the Loam is one of the dredge cards, it’s arguably the one that’s the most playable without dredge being the main reason for it showing up, and it’s shown up plenty in decks over the years where they wanted the effect of the spell, not that sweet dredge number.

Being able to fish back key lands helps smooth out consistency, and Life from the Loam’s low mana value and “up to” wording both help it function early and late. You can use it to fish back fetch lands for a second (or third) go, you can get the Wasteland (or Strip Mine) you need to say “no”, or you can find anything else you need. Things like Seismic Assault like seeing this, and even just having discard fodder in general for things is a pretty solid thing to have.

While Life from the Loam can be used in degenerate dredge patterns, it shines pretty well as a “fair” card, and it’s been played in Legacy as a staple for years over the past 20 years. It’s not gong to (usually) win games on its own, but it’s the best at doing what it does, and it’s a solid piece in both fair strategies and degenerate ones.

Constructed: 4.75
Casual: 4
Limited: 2.5 (land destruction is scant in Limited, and the dredge isn’t a big attraction here)
Multiplayer: 3.5
Commander [EDH]: 4.5

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