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Pojo's Magic The Gathering
Card of the Day

Daily Since November 2001!

Karn Liberated
Image from Wizards.com

 Karn Liberated
- New Phyrexia

Reviewed Feb. 8, 2017

Constructed: 4.25
Casual: 4.25
Limited: 3.75
Multiplayer: 3.75
Commander [EDH]: 4.00

Ratings are based on a 1 to 5 scale:
1 - Horrible  3 - Average.  5 - Awesome

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Card of the Day Reviews 

David Fanany

Player since 1995

Karn Liberated
You're undoubtedly aware, whether from things designers said or just from observation, that artifacts' effects are often ones that can also be found in colored cards, but with a generally higher cost. Karn exemplifies that very well, with his only requirement being that you hit a very high mana count (as though somehow Sphere of the Suns couldn't go in any deck). It does feel odd sometimes, when you're exiling cards from someone's hand in a red-green deck, or conversely playing mono-blue and trying to ramp at all costs, but I'll let it slide because he's a contemporary of Urza. Their history is partly recounted in the novels Planeswalker, Time Streams, and Bloodlines, which were pretty good, and since Karn is still active today, they're still relevant - consider reading them if you get a chance.
Constructed: 4/5
Casual: 4/5
Limited: 4/5
Multiplayer: 4/5
EDH/Commander: 4/5
James H.

Karn Liberated (2/8)


Karn Liberated is extremely powerful, thanks to a confluence of numbers and abilities that make him a real nightmare to stare down. His mana cost is actually perfect; with all three of the "Urzatron" (Urza's Tower, Urza's Mine, and Urza's Power Plant) lands out, you can put him out on turn 3, since they conveniently produce 7 mana. His -3 annihilates a permanent (like a land), and his +4 lets you rip your opponent's hand apart (non-selectively, but it's still good). His ultimate is pretty crazy (restart the game!), but it's unlikely you'll need to use it or be occasioned to do so; if you do, though, it's not too hard to make sure you win the restarted game quickly, since you're starting with a plethora of things. The times you'd want to restart the game, though, are not times you're likely to have a Karn at 14 loyalty.


Even without his ultimate, Karn is crazy good. His mana cost is ideal, he has all the support he needs to wreak havoc, and he even protects himself rather nicely. Decks in Modern (and, to a lesser degree, Legacy) need to be able to respond to the Tron gameplan of powering out an early Karn (or other large fatty), lest they get reamed.


Constructed: 4.5

Casual: 4.5

Limited: 3.5

Multiplayer: 3.5

Commander: 4

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