Memory Jar articles attempt to capture the cards from sets that should be remembered, cards that should be on your default consideration list for a deck of a given color or archetype, the cards you need to put in your Memory Jar.
So this is like, the World Champion card. So great, it’s pretty crazy. Like under costed. I think what R&D calls this is “both sides of the trick” since Faerie Mastermind has “whenever an opponent draws their second card” and then pay 4 to make each opponent draw a card. Which means, for 8 mana, you can draw 4 cards and let each opponent draw 2. Which doesn’t seem amazing, but the flat out “draw when they’ve drawn a second” is just super super good, especially on a creature with flash, that only costs 2 mana, that has flying, and a 2/1. So yeah, expect to put this in your deck, if it has the blue color identity.
Solid ramp value engine, especially because of fetch lands. Surveil will also let you dump things you don’t want to grave, and or dump a land to skip the draw. Also a 2/3 body, which is pretty nicely under costed, solid for attacking or defending battles.
Just another really solid Wrath of God but this one is exile, which will override indestructible, and also creates a big fatty for you.
Ozolith, Shattered Spire
Solid for +1/+1 counter decks, nice way to start off the +1/+1 counter chain on something so you can proliferate it, also cycles for 2 so if you don’t need it you can dump it.
Tribute to the World Tree
Really solid card draw for green, that will pump up your mana dorks as well as letting you draw for 3+ power creatures, and green just, needs that. A little frustrating at GGG, but hey, that’s showbiz where WotC is pumping out cards non-stop.
Surge of Salvation
Hexproof every which way can be strong, and this effectively makes your creatures immune to damage based board clear for red, potentially blowing out a red or black deck occasionally, or sneakily being used to protect your creatures from damage, so you can use something like Thrashing Wumpus and infinite mana as a kill combo. Fits solidly into my Zurgo Helmsmasher deck from last year.
Ayara, Widow of the Realm / Ayara, Furnace Queen
Really fun Rakdos legendary IMO. Ayara plays really well with uh, earlier Ayara. The flip side is really solid, would slot really really well into a (or be the Commander of) a Rakdos (or more) Sneak Attack deck. Sneak them out, they die, (hopefully you sacrificed it for value) then bring it back one more time.
Urabrask / The Great Work
So this just reeks of spellslinger decks. I mean, you’ve got your mana trigger and your damage trigger in one neat package. Backside is a little lackluster, and I don’t see it seeing too much play unless you have some kind of game plan to generate a huge amount of mana for one turn (which sounds kind of fun, old school Gauntlet of Might and Mana Flare) but if you need to clear the board it does offer a solid way to do it.
So this is here because it’s an incredibly solid mid range creature. It’s essentially red version of Questing Beast. I’m not sure if I hope they’ll do a whole cycle of these ( a 4 cost with 3-4 abilities in every color) or just more red and green midrange. Okay changed my mind I hope it’s just more red/green midrange (see Elder Gargaroth), I’d love to see that become some kind of valid strategy in Commander. Battles could make it so.
Invasion of Shandalar / Leyline Surge
So return 3 permanents, that’s fine, deal 4 damage and flip side is just dump a permanent into play each turn (including gross things like Omniscience) so, uh, yes. Just a way to spit out huge fatties each turn for battlecruiser/midrange decks (high potentially as well).
Invasion of Segovia / Caetus, Sea Tyrant of Segovia
Kind of a meme card for the set, but noncreature spells gaining convoke is no joke. Untapping your creatures after convoking is also no joke, lets you effectively hold up for interaction in a way that is often difficult to do in Commander. 3 mana to get a battle into play, hit it with Faerie Mastermind and something else, suddenly you’ve effectively ramped a lot.
Invasion of Karsus / Refraction Elemental
Another solid red damage based board clear. I think the printing of so many 3 toughness Commanders over the last few years means red has upgraded to 3 damage board clear (power creep). Prosper, Tome-Bound was immune to this sort of thing, but suddenly he won’t be if red is getting more and more “deal 3 damage to all”. Backside is uh, brutal. Another magecraft-esque (not for copied spells, obviously).
Reflecting on the set, and how hyped the invasion was and Praetor excursions to other planes and all that, the power level of the set was not that high and there aren’t that many stand out cards. I’m writing this after Aftermath, which was even more really disappointing but there it is.
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