Heartless Act

Heartless Act


Choose one —

  • Destroy target creature with no counters on it.
  • Remove up to three counters from target creature.
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Set Rarity
Ikoria: Lair of Behemoths (IKO) Uncommon

Combos Browse all


Format Legality
Vintage Legal
Tiny Leaders Legal
Brawl Legal
Highlander Legal
Oathbreaker Legal
Leviathan Legal
Pre-release Legal
Historic Legal
Custom Legal
Commander / EDH Legal
Block Constructed Legal
Duel Commander Legal
Canadian Highlander Legal
Standard Legal
Casual Legal
Unformat Legal
Legacy Legal
Limited Legal
Arena Legal
Pioneer Legal
Modern Legal
1v1 Commander Legal

Heartless Act occurrence in decks from the last year

Latest Decks as Commander

Heartless Act Discussion

Apollo_Paladin on Mill

4 days ago

Nice build, its almost identical card-for-card to one of my friends' decks in our playgroup. I think you want some more control/removal in there though, there's LOTS of shutdowns for mill decks anymore.

I've got a Mono-White Aura/Enchantment deck that just stomps the mill builds due solely to Aegis of the Gods. You've got one or two workarounds in here such as Maddening Cacophony which doesn't actually have to Target but by and large it opens the door for a fairly easy lockdown not running any kind of removal spell.

With Blue and Black, you've got tons more options to choose from for either Target Destroy or Return To Hand than are realistic to mention all in a comment.

Just for a few suggestions/guidelines to recommend: I'd just go for the cheapest (mana cost) options you can so as to keep the mill pressure on w/o devoting too much of your turn or deck to it. Plenty of 1 and 2-mana return-to-hand cards from blue (even just simple Unsummon right on up thru much more niche cards) and then 1 and 2-mana target destroys from Black like Bloodchief's Thirst, Cast Down, Heartless Act, etc.

There's also a whole array of U/B colored dual removal/control cards that might find a home here.

I've basically played against this exact deck IRL though, it's a good one! +1

Azeworai on For the Harvest

3 weeks ago

Well met, fair complice of the fields. I as well wield a Reaper King strategy, whereupon I deign to proffer aid unto thee.

Cordialities aside, the King was my third commander deck of sixteen, created quite the meiny of years agone. Hereon, I offer my insight.

I am surprised to an artifact list bereft of Scrap Mastery. It retrieves all from the graveyard and piles up a multitude of triggers.

I see a fair amount of noncreature cards within this list. May I rcommend Whirlwind of Thought? It draws, it draws, it draws, and it draws: everything a player could ever desire.

Favor of the Mighty is one I have quite enjoyed, for there are not many creatures that cost ten to cast. Given that your list seems dependent upon the commander, this does a lot of work.

Many artifacts begets a splendid deck for Jhoira. Each planeswalker and each artifact now cycles.

Shimmyr grants an instant-speed Reaper, a terrifying fright. Subsequential plays of scarecrows now are instants, as well.

Let us speak of a seigneur. He ramps and draws, bestowing an endless engine. This card is explosive and interminably so.

Coming away from deck-specific suggestions, there are a fair few cards I put in all of my lists capable of doing so.

Allow me to introduce you to Unfulfilled Desires. Flooding? Great! Mana-screwed? Still great! Just have a spare two mana laying about indolently? Loot twice! This card is absolutely great. I find it being helpful in literally every deck, thus I cannot recommend it more.

Impulse is fantastic. Put it in and do not look back.

Once Upon a Time is still an unbalanced card, even in Commander. I love to see it at all moments.

There are a few cards I would ablate from this list, if you do not mind my saying.

Geth's Verdict is a potent card, but is best in 1v1 settings. A hard kill spell is more reliable. Given the option, they shall just sacrifice a token. If you are desperate for an edict effect, try Soul Shatter. It hits each opponent instead of just one. For your other edicts, I would just replace them with Anguished Unmaking and Despark, maybe a Heartless Act.

Now, I enjoy spicy inclusions, but I find them difficult to justify when there are just better options. Dispatch is one such card. It requires a board-state to be active. It may be a small feat to achieve that, but Path to Exile is not dependent on anything.

Calculated Dismissal and Clash of Wills... Just run Counterspell and Negate. Each is highly efficient. You also have Rakshasa's Disdain and Spell Shrivel. Why not Sinister Sabotage and Dissolve? The ones in the list are needlessly inefficient.

I have many negative opinions about Fane of the Mendacious Deity, so I shall leave them out of the comment.

Training Grounds seems to only help around six or seven creatures in the deck, which doesn't seem very potent enough by itself. Even if it goes infinite in a shenanigan, you do not have many tutors to find it under that circumstance.

That shall be all from be. Fare thee well.

Here is my list if you care to peer upon it: The Season of Mechanical Harvest

StopShot on Opposition Agent needs a preemptive …

3 weeks ago

People keep posting that you should run Lightning Bolt in your deck. As far as cheap removal goes there are plenty removal spells I’d rather run before I pick up Lightning Bolt. My picks include Dismember, Lightning Axe, Sinister Concoction, Weight of Spires, Go for the Throat, Terminate, Molten Vortex, and Heartless Act

Murphy77 on Dimir Mill

1 month ago

If you are playing Lurrus of the Dream-Den purely as a Companion, he starts the game outside of your core deck and you can cast him at any time. This would actually work well with this deck, but I would want something like Keep Safe available to protect Lurrus.

Then comes the mill cards that you can keep recasting from the grave with Lurrus: Merfolk Secretkeeper (for Venture Deeper), Maddening Cacophony (instant mega-mill), Sweet Oblivion (more instant mill) and Ruin Crab (Landfall mill).

Thieves' Guild Enforcer works well with the theme. Then comes your supporting cards. Essence Scatter is, to me a good side-board card for 2 reasons: firstly trying to keep a balance between colors in the deck, and secondly if your mill is fast enough you may not need it against anything but control decks. Archfiend's Vessel will be suggested by all in sundry, but also detracts from your mill theme (you won't win games with creature damage). I like Heartless Act but you might also want Blood Beckoning or Omen of the Dead to support Lurrus and bring your Thieves' Guild Enforcer and/or Ruin Crab back from the dead (could also work on Merfolk Secretkeeper). The final non-land card in the deck (assuming 4 of each card) is less easy. I personally like to use Mind Carver in any deck with , but Village Rites or another creature kill card will be just as good. There - I think that I have made enough suggestions to also get a side-board going.

As far as lands go, I would keep things as simple as possible. Fabled Passage and Evolving Wilds let you search for the color land you need and also give a double landfall for Ruin Crab a dual colored land that enters tapped may just slow you down a bit. I would stick with 7 Swamp and 9 Island.

LordOwlBear on Standard Life Jank 0.6

1 month ago


While I also look at life as a disposable resource for the most part, having more life does enable Speaker of the Heavens and Angel of Destiny to work at their utmost and activate win condition.

I think in this meta Feed the Swarm has an edge, but Heartless Act has a place as well, because counter removal works against indestructible creatures like Heliod, Sun-Crowned. While I don't think counter removal will be relevant in this meta in particular, I just wanted to give you an instance of when counter removal can be better than hard removal.

Daveslab2022 on Standard Life Jank 0.6

1 month ago

I also can’t think of a single instance where removing counters with Heartless Act is better than just straight up killing that creature. Do you have any examples?

Yorion Doom Foretold decks have been running rampant and run all sorts of enchantments, so Feed the Swarm also serves as a hedge against those decks.

danthecolombian on Powerless Efforts

1 month ago

Long time no comment, here.

Suggest Liliana's Caress and/or Megrim for discarding away your opponent's life count.

Underworld Dreams and Howling Mine ensures damage on the draw and that you have something for them to discard.

Consider Painful Lesson or Foreboding Fruit for more of the same, and maybe even Bloodchief's Thirst or Heartless Act in place of Black Sun for removal.


Murphy77 on Standard Life Jank 0.6

1 month ago


Point, I look at the total cmc cost of the 4 highest cost creatures in my own deck (in this case 20). Playing 4 Feed the Swarm will cost anywhere between (20/2) 10 and game. By not playing the card, if the game goes long, I have double the life.

Not nearly all creatures have counters. When they do they are normally +1/+1 counters. So Heartless Act makes creatures vulnerable, or kills then (even if they have 10 cmc) for a fixed cost of 2 mana.

Given the choice, I would rather keep my life points.

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