Tasha’s Hideous Laughter
– D&D: Adventures in the Forgotten Realms
Date Reviewed: August 10, 2021
Commander [EDH]: 3.25
Ratings are based on a 1 to 5 scale. 1 is bad. 3 is average. 5 is great.
Cards as potentially variable as this one can be hard to assess. In Commander, you might look at it and say “So it mills three or four cards?” That’s a joke and exaggerated, but you know what I mean. In other formats, this could theoretically hit the opponent’s entire deck when cast at the right point in the game. I would be inclined to say that people aren’t going to be very tempted to use it instead of other tried-and-true combo kills, but it is certainly cheap enough to cast late in the game when you can protect it the same turn, and it does get around Leyline of Sanctity and similar cards. That seems like it might end up as more of a niche card or rogue deck; that’s not by any means the worst place to be, though.
Mill has historically been a bit of a rogue strategy, but some of the recent cards in that archetype have been making waves. Tasha’s Hideous Laughter is one such card, thanks to it exiling all the cards it hits. It’s similar to Mind Funeral in not having a defined stopping point, instead of looking for a combined mana value of at least 20. This guarantees a floor of at least 2 cards, since the most expensive spell ever printed is 16 mana, but you’re probably realistically looking at an average hit of at least 10 cards against most Constructed-worthy decks.
Mill has been starting to creep into formats of late; I know Standard has a decent Rogue-based spin on the strategy. The risk of mill is that it’s a strategy that requires lots of support; you’re not affecting the board state any, so lethal damage will probably still be lethal damage all the same. But this spell’s exiling rider and its potential, particularly with mana costs being as low as they are in Constructed, make this worth consideration in both Standard and Modern takes on the deck.
Constructed: 3.25 (mill is still a shaky strategy, but this has enough legs to maybe work)
Limited: 3.75 (has a lot of variance, but it can hit hard)
Commander: 3.5 (hitting everyone and exile are nice, but Commander doesn’t shy away from the biggest bombs, so this will likely chew up fewer cards overall)
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