Lost Caverns of Ixalan
Posted on Sept. 23, 2023, 7:41 a.m. by Coward_Token
My thoughts Show
As it has somehow avoided being banned in EDH all this time, I welcome the reprinting of Mana Crypt.
"Welcome to...": do the new Walls lose all their abilities?
Jeff Goldblum joins Hugh Grant as yet another A-list Hollywood actor that you can now play as your commander. Anyway, the card is kind of like... mutual theft? Seems hard to optimize because if you include synergy like Faerie Mastermind and Agent of Treachery, there's a risk that you end up accidentaly exiling them for your opponents to use. (Also, I was going to be a know-it-all and say that mathematicians aren't scientists, but chaos theory said "no".)
Ojer Axonil: I kinda wish this used the Transformers "More Than Meets the Eye" technology so that it basically functioned as a transforming MDFC.
The Skullspore Nexus: Will try to fit in my Ghalta, Primal Hunger deck. If the big girl dies, you get a replacement that can in turn give a discount on recasting her. Also, the basic play pattern of Turn 5: Cast Ghalta T6: Cast this and activate it like an X=1 Exponential Growth, netting you a commander that can one-shot anyone who doesn't have more than 3 toughness worth of blockers, is solid.
Breeches: I didn't know I needed this for my Admiral Beckett Brass deck. The pseudo-evasion mode synergizes well with menace, and the Treasure mode + his mana cost sets up casting the Admiral on-curve quite smoothly, especially if you managed to get out two other Pirates already. IDK why they included first strike and on-curve P/T and an attack trigger that doesn't actually requires himself to attack and pseudo-evasion, seems a bit pushed even in my eyes.
Huatli: The powercreeper within me wish she functioned like the March of the Machine Praetors, transforming back at the end of the Saga.
So I'm overall the most excited for this set the most next to Modern horizons 3 that was announced.... card spoiler wise the revealed card I want is...
September 23, 2023 10:14 a.m.
Kellan volume 2: I kinda dislike that in a mirror match, the Adventure punishes the player who casts it first since the second one will then get two tokens. Anyway, I wonder what Maps will do. Tutor for basic lands?
September 24, 2023 12:47 p.m.
Quintorius seems to be getting his first planeswalker card
Surprised that they decided to reunite Saheeli with Huatli so quickly
September 24, 2023 5:02 p.m.
I'd be a little disappointed if Maps end up being another "Sacrifice this artifact: Get minor benefit" token. My first sure-to-be-wrong prediction for the set is that Maps do something in bulk, so the more you have, the better the effect. "For each Map you control, do X" or "As long as you control three or more Maps, cool stuff happens." Something like that.
That "Oltec" Mesoamerican-style art is beautiful... I love that art style.
September 24, 2023 7:39 p.m.
Definitely got some decks he can slot into, but he could actually be the next Goblin Commander. Running him alongside Krenko? Oof
September 25, 2023 12:54 a.m.
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not a fan of them making Pirates graveyard-y. I wish they'd stick to typal steal effects like Coercive Recruiter. At least Beckett is ripped
(Unsurprisingly, I disliked that Alara!Grixis was about Unearth. What's blue about reanimation + haste?)
September 25, 2023 4:14 p.m.
I'm intrigued in how they'll pull off the reanimation with potential haste for the Pirate precon. Pirates up until now have felt a bit all over the place as a typal group. I took a stab at building OG Beckett Brass right after Commander Legends dropped, and it felt kinda meh.
I'm mostly excited for potentially hasty reanimated pirates for Goro-Goro and Satoru to get some new dudes for the 99.
September 25, 2023 4:31 p.m.
Coward_Token As much as I love Alara, it's not really the best example of what individual colors do. Like in Naya, is kind of out of place. has less than 100 creatures with power 5+. The next lowest, , has almost 200. didn't really care about artifacts before the shard of Esper was introduced; the only black card between the Mirrodin block and Shards of Alara that cared about artifacts was the reprinted Yawgmoth Demon, and that just sacrificed them.
But that aside, I agree that Pirates shouldn't be especially graveyard-y. Theft and evasion should be more their speed.
September 25, 2023 4:41 p.m.
legendofa: Too bad the dino deck seems to be leaning into the mechanical identity of Alara!Naya as well =P
(funnily enough, while it's not super exciting, Devour does kind work for all three Jund colors, with green previously doing stuff like eating Saprolings and casting Natural Order)
September 25, 2023 5:34 p.m.
I guess we'll find out what "Dino Devastation" means.
The Merfolk one is pretty straightforward. There weren't any Demons in original Ixalan, so there could be something totally new there. Demons?
September 25, 2023 6:16 p.m.
I'm sorry but I think Ghalta is WAY too over powered. Why the hell would WOTC print that.
A 12/12 with Trample for 8 mana, that also unloads all creatures from your hand onto the battlefield FOR FREE?? It's not even a cast trigger! you can blink this asshole and unload your hand!
You all should know by now how I feel about breaking cards and cheating things into play and having immense value, and even I'm the first one to say this thing is broken and should probably just get banned.
September 26, 2023 3:07 a.m.
As someone who played Myojin of Life's Web with That Which Was Taken in commander in 2016; repeatedly putting all creatures from hand into play does, as an effect, severely suffer from diminishing returns. Usually your hand is empty after you do this, so blinking it gets you barely any more creatures in play. Not actually that banworthy. And 8 mana 12/12 is a huge improvement from the 2 mana 12/12 that was the first Ghalta. It's probably worse than Gishath, Sun's Avatar, both because of the colors and because casting from library is more consistent than repeatedly hoarding creatures in hand.
It's a powerful card, for sure, but I think you're more afraid of it than you should be.
September 26, 2023 9:03 a.m.
September 26, 2023 11:14 a.m.
They're taunting me with Skeletons. Two legendary Skeletons, one doesn't do much as a commander, the other needs a big pile of non-Skeleton creatures and can't officially be a commander anyway. Still sitting here in 60-card jank casual... If there's a quality utility or combo Zombie jammed in this set, I'm gonna flip.
Map tokens do exactly what I hoped they wouldn't. They're kind of going overboard on the disposable artifact tokens, in my opinion. Clue, Treasure, Blood, Food, Map... On the other hand, I'd like to see Artifact Creature - Map Construct or something. Walking Atlas needs a corrected printing anyway. (I know the mechanics don't line up, so it's probably not going to happen.)
I'm going to claim an early partial success on my Demons prediction.
October 27, 2023 5:56 p.m.
legendofa: haha, not as much, but I was also a bit dissapointed when I first read "Grim Captain" and thought it was going to be a cool Pirate card. Also, Bats sure are being white-aligned here.
Maybe I'm too old, but I feel the "Craft" mechanic doesn't resonate with the Ixalan flavor of South American civilizations/the European age of exploration. Seems more fit for Dominaria or something similar with established artificer-lore. But yeah, I'm not the Minecraft generation so w/e.
Kinda funny that Angels are featured on a piece of card art that was used in the story, even though none were mentioned in the text. I imagine them just standing around silently in every scene, being ignored and not doing anything.
October 28, 2023 2:56 a.m.
Since our initial trip to Ixalan, I was hoping for a Cuāuhocēlōtl (Jaguar Warrior) styled Legendary. I didn't think we would get a literal jaguar warrior in Sovereign Okinec Ahau, but I'll take it. Although +1/+1 counter strats aren't my thing, his showcase art got me deck brewing, or at the very least, finding him a slot in my Gylwain deck.
October 28, 2023 3:24 p.m.
October 29, 2023 9:59 a.m.
Beligerent Yearling: I like the flavor that this is trying to execute, but it's kinda off. I'm guessing that it's supposed to be small like e.g. Raptor Hatchling, but the art doesn't really give me a sense of its smallness and with its base stats it can still take on a bear and a half. (Also, what the heck is it supposed to be? Looks like a t-rex with an Ankylosaurus' back & tail plus two out of three Triceratops horns.
art 1 Show
art 2 (a bit better IMO) Show
Aside from that, the main characters fighting a bat god and its minions in the story while riding on giant bats themselves kinda seemed like a weird mix of metaphors, especially since bat tokens in the set are mostly associated with Vampires
October 29, 2023 1:08 p.m.
October 31, 2023 12:27 p.m.
That's actually not bad, for the repeatable creature token. The "on your end step" is the limiting factor, so they don't get the pump on opponent's turns if you use that ability. Still, reasonably-sized tokens at a reasonable price is a solid deal. It might not be format-defining, but it's a nice little gift.
October 31, 2023 8:09 p.m.
Kinda medicore haul for my OG!Becket deck. Was hoping for a cheap and reliable source of evasive tokens. Ironically, Skeleton Crew might make legendofa happy instead, despite being in "my" precon. (Although I'm guessing you found Uchbenbak, the Great Mistake pretty underwhelming.)
November 3, 2023 2:52 p.m.
Oh and in case anyone is still playing him: there's a non-zero chance that a major character of the current story arc will be Ruhan
November 6, 2023 11:04 a.m.
Looks like I didn't actually post my response to Coward_Token...
Yeah, Uchbenbak isn't great. It's got decent stats for its cost, and the vigilance and menace are nice (although switching the power and toughness would make both more meaningful--who wants to be chump blocked by a couple of tokens?) It's just all around decent as a card by itself, and doesn't offer much as a commander. Kind of sad that it's still better than most current Skeletons.
Skeleton Crew is the best gift so far. Good synergy with a couple other skeletons, and the buff is very welcome. I expect it'll mostly see play in Gravecrawler combo decks and similar, but I'm claiming it for the skull patrol. Also, what kind of fashion statement is gluing a miniature ship's helm to your shoulder? Is that like Flavor Flav's clock or something?
November 6, 2023 12:17 p.m.
Looks like all of the LCI & LCC cards are now active for edits and brewing. Already spammed all of my edits lol
November 6, 2023 3:05 p.m. Edited.
Crow_Umbra: ahaha I was literally planning on nagging FemmeFatale over it tommorow
November 6, 2023 4:37 p.m.
November 6, 2023 4:40 p.m.
Anyway, don't really get why Francisco, Fowl Marauder both has no power to start triggering its own ability and can't even be used as a blocker, making him all but useless until you find another Pirate. I know I'm a broken record about these kind of things but it seems needlessly conservative, especially compared to Malcolm, Keen-Eyed Navigator.
November 6, 2023 4:51 p.m.
What happened to the rest of the Elder Dinosaurs? I understand Etali died, and we have a card for Ghalta, but where are the other three?
November 7, 2023 8:59 p.m.
TypicalTimmy, perhaps WotC is setting up for the next return to Ixalan:
November 7, 2023 9:33 p.m.
One of my favorite childhood movies.
Dinosaurs eating cereal. I mean why not
November 7, 2023 10:06 p.m.
Even outside of kindred decks, Roaming Throne is worth considering for non-blue trigger commanders who always wanted a Spark Double. Special mention goes to backgrounds like Passionate Archaeologist, because they work by giving your commander the ability rather than triggering on their own.