Nahiri, the Harbinger
Overall rank: 2
My rank: 1
Nahiri was one of the
"sleeper" cards of
Shadows Over Innistrad; while other
cards seemed flashier and more impressive at
first, Nahiri quietly made a name for herself as
being absurdly powerful.
The reason Nahiri is so
good is that she ticks quickly towards her
potent ultimate, but she also gives a lot of
utility beyond it. Exiling an enchantment or
troublesome permanent gives her a lot of value
in decks not geared around her ultimate (and
it's effective removal in colors that sometimes
have trouble getting it). Her +2 synergizes well
with madness, and it also gives the two worst
card-advantage colors some form of card
advantage they can make use of.
Nahiri's ultimate is her
main draw, and it's game-ending. Fishing out
Emrakul, Ulamog, or another fatty to swing into
your opponent, regardless of format, is a play
that shortens games. It goes off at -8, two
turns after she resolves, and a resolved Nahiri
is a ticking time bomb as she moves closer to
ending the game on the spot.
She's surprisingly powerful
in many formats, and she's versatile beyond
that. For that reason, I picked her as my top
new card of 2016.