Tamiyo, Compleated Sage – Kamigawa: Neon Destiny
Date Reviewed: April 5, 2022
Commander [EDH]: 3.50
Ratings are based on a 1 to 5 scale. 1 is bad. 3 is average. 5 is great.
And suddenly, things turned really, really ugly.
So, this card has got a lot going on (and not just the implication that there will be more Compleated). A flexible mana cost makes her stronger, but the tradeoff is enough that you won’t just pay 2 life every time. This is not as common as you’d expect among cards that involve life payments. Tamiyo’s -X is extremely powerful – I’m not going to mince words about it, because it does everything from duplicate those creatures that are so efficient you raised an eyebrow, to get extra comes-into-play abilities, to break the singleton rule in Commander. Her +1 is solid but unspectacular, though it can easily slow opponents down enough to make you come out on top when you’ve been able to take control of other elements of the game; and decks that rely on a smaller number of big attackers will hate it. It’s almost best used to strengthen her -X or build towards her surprisingly affordable ultimate, an ultimate which can overpower opponents quite easily. Don’t forget, though, that you get an artifact token and not an emblem – save a counterspell for the possible Disenchant effect.
Commander [EDH]: 4/5
Well, things just escalated, and the Phyrexians figured out how to make planeswalkers. Tamiyo, Compleated Sage is interesting not just for her story implications, but as a card on her own…if you need her early, 4 mana and 2 life will get her in there with 3 loyalty, while 5 mana lets her enter at 5 loyalty.
Historically, five mana has been the planeswalker dead zone, and while Tamiyo’s abilities aren’t weak, they do little to really change that. All the same, locking a permanent down for a turn isn’t bad and quite nice against decks with only one threat, while her -X is a bit of pseudo-reanimation. Of note is that she’d function similar to Ajani Vengeant if she comes in for four mana, and big angry kitty is a feared card for good reason.
Her ultimate is actually a decent attraction, though the catch is that Tamiyo’s Journal (the artifact made) is susceptible to removal. Still, a flat cost reduction along with an extra card each turn is an excellent payoff if you can get her to live, and it pops at 7 loyalty, which is particularly attainable if you pay full price.
I think Tamiyo is a bit better than she looks, but she definitely wants a more controlling shell to shine. But even if you just use her as a pseudo-recursion spell, that’s more than reasonable as a way to try and tighten the screws. She’s intriguing without being overtuned, and I feel like there will be plenty of places for her to shine.
Commander [EDH]: 3.5 (her recursion is probably her biggest draw, but the other abilities are threatening with room to fire)
Tamiyo was corrupted by Phyrexia! Who else will join the ranks of the Phyrexian army?? Will they have better cards? I sure hope so! First off this is too expensive. Yes you can pay life and four but even still the abilities it gives you should warrant a four mana value creature and not five. The first ability is fine, it can help to stall a powerful creature that is causing you problems. The -X ability is the best in my opinion, creating a copy of a creature is solid and the more you can protect Tamiyo the better this minus ability will become, image a copy of Avatar of Might or Consecrated Sphinx! Lastly, the ultimate ability lets you permanently cast cheaper spells (unless the artifact gets destroyed that is) which is nice for green’s large and in charge creatures or you can draw a card which is never a bad thing! Overall it is an okay planeswalker that doesn’t wow but is a powerhouse in limited!
Commander [EDH]: 3
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