No Mercy – Dominaria Remastered
Date Reviewed: January 17, 2023
Commander [EDH]: 4.00
Ratings are based on a 1 to 5 scale. 1 is bad. 3 is average. 5 is great.
No Mercy has long been a casual staple – part of the value of creatures is that they repeatedly deal damage, and it takes that away. It might sometimes feel less effective in an age where Commander and the like see lots of enters-the-battlefield abilities and static abilities, but I wouldn’t underestimate it. Nobody wants to see any creature of theirs die right away (unless that’s part of its abilities, I guess), and it really puts a damper on situations where an opponent hopes to cast something big and just take over the game.
On a slightly different note, there’s a set of funny semi-corner cases that arise because it doesn’t specify “a creature an opponent controls”. Everyone recognizes that it’s a powerful defensive tool, but it also means you can’t really play creatures like Serendib Efreet or Cuombajj Witches. I guess you just wouldn’t put them in a deck together; still, it’s funny to realize that when the card says No Mercy, it really means it!
Commander [EDH]: 4
No Mercy is a weird sort of defensive tool in black, punishing those with the audacity to ding you or hit you otherwise and notably triggering off of any damage (and not just combat damage). The hit will still land, but just once, and it makes No Mercy a decent sort of soft check against double strike and pinging options. It’s the kind of spell that will help tighten up a strong board, but it’s less useful if you lack the life to spare for such a spell to have the time to do its magic, and so it’s in a sort of “fun” space that is good, but not phenomena, and definitely a step too slow for Constructed anymore. It’s a solid deterrent, though, and it’ll force hard decisions a lot of the time.
Commander [EDH]: 4
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