Sokenzan, Crucible of Defiance – Kamigawa: Neon Destiny
Date Reviewed: February 11, 2022
Commander [EDH]: 2.67
Ratings are based on a 1 to 5 scale. 1 is bad. 3 is average. 5 is great.
Red is certainly known for hasty attackers and for swarming the table, though I don’t think Sokenzan’s channel ability is one of the more efficient ways of doing so (until you have two or three legendary creatures in play, but if you do, then you were probably winning anyway). You could pair it with something that cares about you discarding cards, along the lines of Amonkhet‘s Drake Haven, as activating a channel ability counts for those. It’s probably not at the top of lists of triggers for those cards either, though. If something comes up where immunity to counterspells is relevant, it might have some prospects there to all but guarantee a way to get attackers on the field; similarly, if there’s a red Spirit deck, this will probably be decent there.
Casual: 3/5 (it might be worth trying to use it with Life from the Loam to jam up tables)
Commander [EDH]: 3/5
Relatively speaking, Sokenzan, Crucible of Defiance is a step down from the other channel lands we’ve seen so far, but it’s still deceptively good; two emergency blockers or attackers, in a relevant tribe and in a way that’s hard to counter, can go a long way in an emergency, and this also has the upshot of just being a land if you need it to be a land. This is probably more “subtle” in its value in spite of it being in red, as a pair of 1/1 Spirits does not immediately come off as being the best use of a card…but red tends to be fairly light on flash tricks and other ways to surprise during the combat step unless it involves killing things dead, and so this gives a pretty fun angle of attack for the enterprising red deck. I think it’s still worth playing as a one-of or two-of in red decks, and sometimes just getting those two Spirits careening into an open board is enough to get you there.
Commander [EDH]: 4
I might be wrong here, or at least in the minority opinion, but I don’t think this is very good. The high Channel cost of 3R just to get two 1/1 spirits with haste IN RED? Spirits in the previous set, Crimson Vow, were primarily in blue and white. Why do I need to play Jeskai colors to just use this card? Wouldn’t this have been better on the blue or white legendary land? Couldn’t this have made two 1/1 goblins instead? Or dealt three damage? Or done a Chaos Warp effect? Or literally anything else? Giving them haste is the only red thing about this card. Maybe they were going the aggro route, but 4 mana for an aggro card? I think there are some design flaws with this card compared to it’s brethren from this set…
Commander [EDH]: 1/5
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