4-Color Thoughts

I am anxiously awaiting ANY kind of spoiler about the 4-color Commander product from Wizards that’s coming out this fall.  I am really excited to be able to take apart the 4-color “Tag Team” decks that I have built (since Tag Team never took off).  Lots of speculation on how it will be executed.  My guess is there will be a “True” 4-color legend, and then a 2-color with a hybrid ability for the other 2 colors, though I’d love too see 2-colors that are flip-walkers  (Dark Trauma Spark Ignition!).

Of course I did a 5-part series on some of my card-creation attempts at 4-color commanders back in 2013 .

Part 1. Part 2. Part 3. Part 4.Part 5

I never ended up building decks around any of these, but I had a lot of fun designing them. I didn’t use Hybrid technology as much as I could have either.  Of all of them, I think I like the pair of the twins Pradoc and Pradice the best.   I also really liked the idea of the “Dark Transformation” double-faced cards, and the idea of having one card represent a team-up of two characters. Oh how I would love a  Teysa/Zegana  Orzhov-Simic Team-up card…. Hmmm…. time to go back to Magic Set Editor

Game #150: Nextwave, Agents of H.A.T.E (Sliver Hivelord)

Game #150: Nextwave, Agents of H.A.T.E (Sliver Hivelord)
Date: 2015-03-04
Location: Family Game Store
Vs. Karona(Foils), Karona(Dragons), Grimgrin, Gisa
Result: Neutral Loss

Sliver HivelordvsImage (1)Image (1)Grimgrin, Corpse-Born, Magic, InnistradGhoulcaller Gisa, Magic, Commander 2014

Game #150 is finally here. This deck has been well over a year in the making. The usual suspects were all gathered, despite the impending weather. The All-Foil Karona (with every card also in Top-Loaders, deck was present, as was another Karona deck based on the new Dragons, plus Grimgrin and Gisa (whose players only have the 1 deck). A nice mix of 5 colored decks and the balance of mono-deck-owning to my too-many-deck owning.

Gisa kept a 0 land hand (drawing into a land) and had 6 mana by turn 2, casting Gisa that turn. I had WUG lands and a Guard Gomazoa, Paradise Mantle and Gilder Bairn in my opening hand. 3 other players had turn 1 sol rings. K-Dragons played the mana-making Siege. A turn 3 Chromatic Lantern put me in a decent starting place, followed by a Guard Gomazoa.

Chandra Nalaar

Tabitha Smith

Ajani Vengeant

a very angry Howard the Duck

Grimgrin played a Noxious Ghoul. I got my first Planeswalker, Ajani Vengeant, out and -2ed him to Lightning Helix the Ghoul (which my indestructible general was not fond of), then Gisa killed Ajani. Next turn I played my Broccoli Man… I mean Sliver Hivelord and gave him a paradise mantle, but he died to a Black Suns zenith, as did Guard Gomazoa. I played Chandra Nalaar and started pinging people, She got two activations before being killed by K-Foils Nicol Bolas (Karona ended up playing nearly as many Planeswalkers as I did… silly duel decks).

Venser the Sojourner

Forbush Man

I played a Venser and blinked a land and also had replayed my general, but Kokusho and Sliver Hivelord got Ashes to Ashes’ed and Venser got zombie swarmed. I had clockspining in my hand and would have Ultimated Venser the next turn. I re-cast Sliver Boss, but then K-Foil cast Hallowed Burial and I lost it (Gisa went away too). Bummer.

Vraska the Unseen

Nico Minoru

Gisa had been pounding on K-Dragons, and ended him with a Lashwrithed Inkmoth Nexus. I played Vraska to kill the Lashwrithe, and would have been able to Ultimate Vraska the next turn, but Vraska died to an All Is Dust. Then a Memory Jar absolutely hosed me (I lost Doubling Season, Chain Veil, Liliana Vess and Nicol Bolas to it ). GrimGrin hit me with a 9/9 Nether Shadow.

Garruk Wildspeaker

The Captain

Tezzeret the Seeker

Aaron Stack

Gisa was slowly dying to bad coinflips with Mana Crypt (to the point that he had to Unstable Obelisk his own crypt to not die). I cast Tezzeret and Garruk, and then Kiora and, unfortunately, Jace the Mind Sculptor* but K-Foils Comet Storm and and Karona Attack killed all 4. Next turn Karona killed Grimgrin by Damage and Gisa by Soul’s Fire.

Kiora the Crashing Wave


Jace The Mind Sculptor



Sorin Markov

“Successful” Dirk Anger


My last hope was Sorin Markov. I set Karona to 10, but since Garruk had died, I couldn’t Overrun my Karona Attack, and left K-Foils at 2. He pinged Sorin, and I clockspun him to keep him alive, but I couldn’t protect him long enough to do the last two damage, so I scooped. It was a frustrating game. Not Un-fun, but there were way too many “I was about to do something exciting, but then couldn’t” let-downs for it to be a really fun game.

ABOUT THE DECK (http://tappedout.net/mtg-decks/agents-of-hate/ and Gallery Here: https://edh100.wordpress.com/2015/03/05/updated-nextwave-superfriends/ )

I had wanted to build a Planeswalker (“Superfriends”) deck for a long time (because I rarely play PWs). Originally I had thought of doing DC Comics Heroes as proxies (the actual Superfriends), but I realized that it would be WAY cooler to use my favorite hero team instead. (Seriously, you should all go read Nextwave right now, Warren Ellis and Stuart Immonen are great).

It took me awhile to make all of the choices for who would play whom. I also ended up dipping into Runaways (another great series) for a few characters, and also Howard the Duck for Ajani, and Namora for Kiora.

The goal of the deck is to just play as many Planeswalkers as possible and use Proliferate and Clockspinning and GilderBairn (possibly Vorel/Liquimetal Coating) to cheat more Loyalty counters out. There are some walls to block and some recursion as well.

I was origninally going to see if people cared if I played Legacy Weapon (The Shockwave Rider) as my general, but then Sliver Hivelord came out (this doubly filled my need to make a Hivelord deck with NO slivers in it, where Hivelord was still relevant) and I knew that a 5/5 indestructible dude would be good for protecting Planeswalkers. Of course he had to be a Broccoli man (and If I ever put other slivers in the deck for fun, they will also be Broccoli Men).

*I believe I’m the only person to go, “Oh,darn… it’s only JtMS… 😦 ”  in the history of Magic: I thought it was Teferi,which would have been AWESOME, because I could have used Gilder Bairn to Ultimate him immediately for a super-rad emblem… silly confusing Proxies.

The Rest of the Night:

I played Animar for the second game. Had a really fun looking opening hand, but didn’t draw in to blue mana. Even after a Reforge the Soul (where I lost many great things) still no island. Animar never even got cast, and Karona(Dragons) got a pretty brutal Scourge of Valkas/Baby-dragon-every-upkeep/Utvara Hellkite combo on that killed us all. Bummer.

Next game I played Teysa #1 and was doing okay. Reforge the Soul (again) dumped stuff in my hand, but Teysa can get stuff back.  I had some Sun Titan, Murder Investigation, Karmic Guide, Debtors’ Knell, Teysa good times. I did get brutally NIhil Spellbombed because I forgot to exile a Junk Diver.  I had just played Grave Pact, Ashnod’s Altar and Soul Warden, when it hit closing time.

Updated NextWAVE Superfriends

This is the updated Nextwave: Agents of H.A.T.E. “superfriends” collection.  I made a few adjustments, from the previous one.  Ajani wasn’t working as random  splash page sabertooth white-tiger, so he became Howard the Duck.  I also dipped into Runaways for a few planeswalkers, and did up a few Lands and other key cards (I really like my Doubling Season and Command Tower).  I’m also pretty psyched to have Devil Dinosaur as Ugin and I like the BabyMODOK/ElvisMODOK as Baby Jace/Big Jace (and Jace as Number None/Modok in general).  Not every one of these guys made it into the current deck, but they are still cool.

Firefly Weatherlight: Another Theme Deck

I’ve had cards set aside to make a “Weatherlight Crew”  theme deck for quite awhile  (with Legacy Weapon as my 5-color “General,” breaking the rules of the format wide-open).

This morning it struck me that many parallels could be drawn between the Crew of the Weatherlight, another rag-tag band of Science-Fantasy misfits on a Flying Ship out to save the world from infectious science-zombies…

…thus we have: The Big Damn Heroes.
(I used the quite cool Quantom Mechanix Art Noveau portraits (please don’t sue me))

Malcom ‘Mal’ Reynolds

 Gerrard Capashen

Of course Mal is Gerrard. He’s the Boss (though Mal is way cooler than Gerrard)

Zoe Alleyne-Washburne:

Captain Sisay

And Sisay was the obvious choice for his second.

Hoban ‘Wash’ Washburne:

 Hoban Ships Navigator

I was torn over who would be the better Hanna. In the end the Navigator/Pilot theme won out.  I also imagine Artificers to be like Archaeologists… which are like paleontologists and…. Dinosaurs. Also, similar fates.

Kaylee Frye: 

Karn Silver Golem

Kaylee was the other option for Hanna, but in the end, she was the one keeping the ship in the air, and had a way with machines. Please excuse the off-color quotation choice.

Inara Serra:

Mirri Cat Warrior

Un?requited  or at least awkward love with the captain? Check!

Simon Tam:

 Orim Samite Healer


River Tam:      

Tahngarth Talruum Hero

Super Badass that can “fight” anything, and had some bad experiments happen.

Jayne Cobb:

Squee Goblin Nabob

Jayne was a tough one, he’s a bit better fighter than Squee, so he could have been Tahngarth. He’s got a bit of a bad side, so he could have been Crovax. Ultimately he was revered and worshiped unnceccessarily, so I kept him as squee.

Shepherd Derrial Book:

Ertai Wizard Adept

Book was another tough one. He’s not cocky like Ertai (though there’s that whole fate thing). He has a bit of a Dark Past, but I didn’t quite see him as Crovax .

Serenity, Firefly Class:

Legacy WeaponSkyship Weatherlight

This one was another no-brainer. I really like the picture for the Legacy Weapon.

Baddies (more coming soon) — Suggestions welcome!

Saffron/Yolanda/Bridget – YoSaffBridge

Starke of Rath

She really should be Takara, but Takara didn’t get her own card. Traitrous Red-head? Yes Please.

A Reaver Ship

Predator Flagship

The deck isn’t finished. I’m going to stick with Weatherlight Story Blocks cards, of course. I haven’t decided who all the other Legends will be, and I don’t know if I’m going to make proxies of every card, or just the Legends.

Nextwave Superfriends: Help Needed

Help Needed!

I’ve been planning on making a 5-Color Planeswalker EDH deck (a “Superfriends” deck), but since I only own 1 copy of certain PWs, I didn’t want to tie them all up in a single deck.

Since I own one of each Planeswalker (okay, except for Chandra 4.0), I don’t mind having proxies of them, and since MSE makes it easy to make cool proxies, I decided to do alternate art. I considered doing the actual “Superfriends,” but I’m annoyed enough with “The New 52” to not want to do DC.  Then I thought about going to Marvel and doing an X-Men deck, but I realized that it could get cooler… it could Kick Your Face… and I came to the correct conclusion…

Nextwave: Agents of H.A.T.E. !  

Here are some examples (See more examples in the Gallery)

The Main Team

Liliana of the Veil Elspeth Knight-Errant Chandra Nalaar Tezzeret Agent of BolasGarruk Wildspeaker

Elsa as Elspeth: Because she is a B@d@ss warrior
Tabby as Chandra: because, like, ZOMG!
Monica as Liliana: because she’s a bit self-centered
The Captain as Garruk: because he’s filthy, strong, and smashes
Aaron Stack as Tezzeret: because he’s a Machine Man

Some Villains:

Sarkhan the Mad Sorin Lord of Innistrad Jace Beleren Jace Memory Adept Nicol Bolas Planeswalker

Dirk Anger as Sorin/Sarkhan:  because he becomes Undead AND goes Mad
Baby Modok/Number None as Jace: Mastermind? Also Baby Modok is Baby Jace, and Elvis Modok is JtMS
Nicol Bolas as Fin Fang Foom: Extraplanar Dragon with serious issues.

Other Bit Characters:

Ajani Vengeant Ashiok Nighmare Weaver Domri Rade Karn Liberated
A crazy white Tiger from one of the splash pages as Ajani Vengeant:  an angry cat (pretty lame.
Dread Rorkannu as Ashiok : might be into (or be) one of those Suicide Girls
A Drop Bear as Domri: beause it’s little and vicious
Robo-Officer Mangel as Karn: big angry robot

Here’s Where I need help!

There are still a bunch of Planeswalkers that need characters:

  • Ajani
  • Gideon
  • Koth
  • Nissa
  • Ral Zarek
  • Tamiyo
  • Tibalt
  • Venser
  • Vraska
  • Xenagos

There are still some key players that need Planeswalkers

  • Devil Dinosaur
  • Mindless Ones and Broccoli-men (possibly as Tokens)
  • Forbush Man and the other New Paramounts
  • Other things

I need sugestions!   Do I keep it All-Nextwave, or do I branch out into other Marvel Characters?  Should Gideon be Charlie America or Captain America? Please give me the answers!

The Decklist is here: http://tappedout.net/mtg-decks/agents-of-hate/

It also needs a General. Currently it’s “Child of Alara” (because it’s a board wipe), but  since this deck is a Silly Deck as it is, do I just bend the rules and use a Legendary Artifact (Legacy Weapon) as the Shockwave Rider? if not, What WUBRG critter would make the best general?

The rest of the deck isn’t thematic, just lots of proliferate and counter-doubling and such and a few creatures to block. However, I may proxy up some cool  scenes on things like Doubling Season.

Card Creation: 4-Color Generals, part 5

Another activated-abilities cycle.  This one is missing a second RW legend (with a UG) activation, but only because I forgot to make one.

Zoga the Meek

Zoga the Meek

Zoga was tired of his goblin kinfolk being slaughtered (or dying due to their own idiocy), so he studied the darker arts to help keep them alive. As he grows stronger, his clan grows bolder.

Vivvixia of Warpwood

Vivvixia of Warpwood

Vivvixia turns the natural cycle of life into knowledge and vengeance.

Kharalus Warpwinged

Kharalus Warpwinged

Kharalus does not breathe fire, but instead exhales literal life and death.



A mutant ooze that absorbs anything around it. It does not, however, kill what it engulfs, instead amalgamates its captives.

This was supposed to be creature type Ooze Mutant.  This card is possibly too complicated, but I like that it can act as removal or as wrath protection.

San’ai Vig

Sanai Vig Psychaeologist

San’ai, a cousin of Momir, is somewhat of an outcast from the Simic Guild, dabbling in Orzhov magic (without their consent… she didn’t want to fill out the forms).

Her +1/+1 counter ability was created before Evolve, and was meant to work with Graft creatures. She can cast regrowth by stealing life-essence from her allies.

Pradoc and Pradice

Pradoc the Mindbender Pradice the Soulraiser

Twin brother and sister, Pradoc and Pradice take very different paths in their magical craft. Pradoc mimics spells, while Pradice mimics souls.

Pradoc acts as a modified Gerrard’s Verdict, pushing opponents to discard spells he can copy. Pradice works to get creatures in the graveyard for copying.

Old Flamegnarl

Old Flamegnarl  

Once the tallest and oldest tree in his forest,  he was the only tree  left standing(Woodwing took to the air) when the forest was burned. Though he died in the conflagration, his spirit bound itself to the flames and returned to animate his body.

Grathus Woodbane

Grathus Woodbane

Grathus Woodbane is the vampire that turned Kvasha into a vampire. He was a hermit who fancied himself a necromancer. One of his rituals went awry, turning him into an undead.

This one is getting updated text to allow copying of Legendary creatures now that the Legend Rule has changed

Card Creation: 4-Color Generals, part 4

The Dynamic Duo Cycle

This is another “off-color activation” cycle for achieving a 4-color identity.  This time the idea was the other two colors represent the second member of the duo.

Brannock and Gyr

Brannock and Gyr

A Knight and his Griffin. Brannock is an aggressive attacker, and Gyr allows him to divebomb.  UG aren’t normally Griffin (or Gryffinfdor) colors, but the abilities granted are right for the colors. UUGG buys you both flying and trample.

Fury and Vengeance


Fury and Vengeance

Samurai Twins. Protection from Blue is a cop-out, and I feel like I give out Double Strike and Trample too often, though Double Strike is fitting here. Paying to get Bushido is kind of cool.

Mosk and Merc

Mosk and Merc 

Mosk and Merc had their names stolen from the pages of the Wheel of Time series of books.  Mosk guys will steal your best Sword,stab you in the face with it, and then Merc will chuck it back at, not to, you.


Saralen and Cersei

Saralen and CerseiSister of the Sea  

Saralen’s name didn’t get borrowed from fantasy literature, Cersei’s did (though not intentionally).  I like Twin generals like Stangg, so I knew one of these had to be that style.  If Saralen Summons her Sister of the Sea, their siren song seduces attacks, and then soothes savagery aimed at you.

Trag and Allowin

Trag and Allowin

Allowin’s name also comes from Sci-Fi literature. This one has Flavor Text.   I know that regeneration already causes the creature to tap (at least it used to),  but this allows Allowin to tap opposing creatures… they just get a random bonus of being a troll.

Card Creation: 4-Color Generals, part 3

The Transform Card series

While I still think differently-colored activation costs  are the secret tech that would make a 4-colored color-identity legend work the best, Innistrad block introduced some new tech — double-faced cards — that provide another option.  Again, you only need 2-colors to cast it, but they’re better with 4.

Some of these cards are my favorites, and a few need a bit more work.

Torkin Wingclaw

Torkin Wingclaw Torkin Wingclaw.1

Torkin was partially inspired by Huntmaster of the Fells, and partially by Pikel Bouldershoulder (from R.A. Salvatore’s Cleric Quintet).   He’s a lord for the birds and the bears (that he makes), but he can switch back and forth depending on what you need defensively.




Daikatimor is a Rage Demon.  He’s a pretty brutal beater, and a potential 2-turn clock.  However, his transform condition (which I think might need to cost more), curses him into becoming an innocent young girl (just waiting for blood to be spilled to reawaken the Demon within), who also makes your team into great blockers (if pacifists).

Dialda, of the Doesn’t-have-a-cool-title


Dialda is a Knight who has studied tactical strategy, but she has some anger issues.  I wonder if the Double Strike side  with the slith effect might be too attractive/powerful. I also think I’d use a less optional transform cost.

Gwynne, Handmaiden of Trest

Gwynne Handmaiden of TrestGwynne Handmaiden of Trest.1

Sure, Edric does the spying bit, but silly little court-maiden Gwynne does the dirty work.  First she disarms you with her charm (and convinces you to give her gifts), but if you get in her way, or if you just need  killing, she will eliminate you and then disappear in to the mists, leaving people none-the-wiser.

Aeonic Traveller

Aeonic TravellerAeonic Traveller.1

I have a rule against Time-Travel… it’s confusing, and rarely done well.   The baddass Mad Scientist speeds up time for you by giving you more cards… glimpses into the future… but if you pay the cost you get accidental rampaging dinosaur that eats time (preventing you from drawing cards, and requiring a sacrifice of hand), but also buys you time (more attack phases).

Card Creation: 4-Color Generals, part 2

The Commander Cast Contest Cycle

This was my second submission to the Commander Cast Contest. This one also didn’t win.

This cycle starts at 2 mana for a 2/2 and ends at a 6/6 for 6.  Each has an ability that has a major-effect on the game, where that effect is particularly stronger against the non-color, and can be built around in its own deck.  I used Hybrid mana in the 2 and 3 cost creaures in order to technically have the colors in the mana costs. This makes them a bit easier to cast in the early game. Color identity prevents them from slotting into 2 or 3 color decks, and the hosing of a  particular color strategy makes them less optimal in 5 color decks.

Spirit of the Earth

Spirit of Earth

This guy’s name was originally “Gravity Bear.”  He is not blue and prevents bounce strategies.  Pro-Fliers doesn’t do much on defense, but he’s also only a 2-drop.


Urbania, the Leveler

Urbania The Leveler

Urbania would like nothing more than to see gleaming spires, crowded streets, and even dingy alleyways cover her plane (can’t someone buy her a planeswalker ticket to Ravnica?). Her grand plan, and it is Her plan, involves clearcutting the wilderness and building and building. She sells it well, but few others notice how powerful she grows as her cityscape spreads.
_design notes:_ This shuts down certain forms of ramp, which is one of the most annoying things about big green. It hits Primeval Titan [who was not banned at the time of the contest], fetch-lands, Oracle of Mul Daya, not Azusa though.  At one point she also made you discard any non-drawn lands too, but I thought that was too much at this cost, and I wanted her to beable to come out early in the game to slow ramp.  She hits your own ramp too OR if you ramp first (via fetches or artifact ramp) she’s bigger.   Her red-ness also plays well with Land Destruction.
The templating on this card is really poor.
Astaia, Souls’ Barrier

Astaia Souls Barrier

Astaia believes that the soul’s purpose is to serve on this plane, and that the only allowable death is a natural one (or at least an honorable one on the battlefield).
_desgin notes_:  There are sacrifice effects in all colors, but black has the most, and the most ability to cause others to sacrifice. This is a pretty powerful effect in EDH.  This card was created before Sigarda and before the other Angel that prevents sacrifices as costs.  I think the symmetrical effect is more interesting.
Anx, Spellweb Spinner

Anx Spellweb Spinner  

Anx’s webs capture the magical energies and vibrations, as well as the pain suffered by those around her, which she feasts upon.
_design notes:_ Her main ability shuts down red direct-damage strategies.  Reach is standard spider fare, but I didn’t want to break the cycle pattern and make her a 5/7.  I thought about adding a triggered ability that caused her toughness to grow when she was targeted, but I decided Shroud was a simpler and less wordy choice. Shroud, not hexproof, because she’d rather eat the spells you’d send at her than allow them to affect her.
Thursus, Grasp of Depths

Thursus Grasp of Depths

Thursus exists in the unfathomable void that lies beyond life, death, or the imagination.  It’s empty there, and Thursus intends to keep it that way. It’s avatar emerges from the depths of the sea (or the mind).
_design notes_: White has a lot of exile effects, and this card at least gives you the hope of getting the cards back.  The second ability gives a degree of control against Wrath effects or other board-wipes. Note that it can give any player’s creature undying, so it can be used politically.  The Return to Hand cost is meant to represent Thursus retreating into the player’s mind. It gives undying rather than indestructible because the latter feels more white. If X is 0, it’s a convenient way to bounce Thursus to your hand in response to targeting, and be able to recast it without extra General fees. I almost changed it to ‘avatar’ creature type, but I really wanted to make a UBRG Zombie deck.

Card Creation: 4-Color Legends, part 1.

I’ve always been disappointed that there are no 4-color legends to build decks around.  The nephilim are cool, they aren’t all super-inspiring as generals, so soon after I started playing EDH, I started creating 4-color generals. These are all cards that I think would be cool in the format. I haven’t built decks around them yet (my 4-color decks are tag-teams featuring real cards), but I plan on it this summer.

Since I won’t have as many opportunities to play over the summer, I thought I’d share some of my commander creations.

The Originals (my first creations, entered into Commander Cast’s contest, thought they were created well before it)

“I figured that one of the ways that 4-color legal generals could actually get printed in a regular set would be taking advantage of Color Identity rules. In non-commander magic, these would be playable and draftable in 2-color decks. They’d be decent creatures that were made better if a player could manage to scrape together the off-color activation costs for their additional abilities.
In commander, by the color identity rules, they’d only be playable in 4 or 5 color decks.  They’d still be relatively easy to cast, but would really shine with they additional abilities, AND they’d enable the 4 color deckbuilding that we currently lack.
I designed these over a year ago after talking with a buddy of mine (and these were the impetus for me suggesting 4-color decks for the CallInferno).  I’ve tweaked them a bit over the last few months.  The process was mostly to identify some interesting abilities that were effective against the non-color of each general.  I went with Allied Color casting costs with off-color activations only because I liked the balance. (I am working on the opposing color/ allied color-activation counterparts).  Since I like flavor and character in my cards, I also used a bit of top-down design on some of the cards, thinking of the character archetype first and then adding abilities.”

Kvasha Midnights Watch


Once a nightwatch patrol on the walls of her city, dutifully protecting it from threats from the surrounding wilds. Kvasha’s failing one night allowed a woodland necromancer to temporarily take the city. Kvasha was killed by undead beasts in the attack (which was ultimately resisted by the city’s militia). When she rose again the following night, her guilt compelled her to return to the walls (and skies) and defend the city. She slakes her vampiric thirst only on the enemies of the city, but she also draws strength from the dreams and fears of the inhabitants of her city.


_Design notes_:  I almost gave her Defender, but what fun is a commander that can’t go on offense just a little.  I gave her a vampiric pumping ability as a RW combat trick (which is also relatively powerful because of the deathtouch). The before block declaration keeps her from being a constant 2-for-1 on defense).  The discard-regenerate represents her blue side.

Woodwing Arbor Phoenix


Woodwing was nothing but a normal tropical bird until Vedalken artificers burned and clear-cut her forest to gain access to the magical ores beneath it. Woodwing rose from the ashes ready to exact vengeance and justice. Though her flame has been snuffed out many times, her power over life and death is strong enough to re-ignite not only her own soul, but also those of the other inhabitants of her forest.


 _design notes:_   GWB are graveyard recursion colors, with R having creature recursion in the form of phoneix cards.  Hexproof comes from her G cost, and is helpful against blue’s targeted bounce.  Her Graveyard recursion power is also resistant to countermagic. I like the idea that this is a commanderyou want to go to your Graveyard.  I limited her graveyard recursion to G/R for flavor reasons more than anything else.

Zgplyx the Ooze Infernal

If the roilng, burning, engulfing, acidic chaos that is Zgplyx has an origin or motivation beyond the utter destruction of order, none have survived encounters with it with enough sanity (or life) to discover them.

_design notes:_  Oozes are the best. So are +1/+1 counters. It’s a lot more fun with gross amounts of mana.


Varik Spellwild Knight

Varik was a typical knight in the service of his king, when he discovered a latent talent for spellcasting.
_design notes_:  This was the first one I designed. He’s a standard Knight with a mini- electrolyze on a stick.



Altus Realmfinder

Lost Civilizations, hidden temples, camoflauged enemy encampments… Altus Realmfinder will locate them. Many attribute his success to the piercing vision of his Owl-Aven eyes and his uncanny ability to evade harm, however, while this is true,  what none-still-living know is that he also engages in blood magic to guide him (at great and secret cost to those who hire him).
_Design Notes_:  This card is effective versus Red for two reasons. 1. protection from non-combat damage means he can’t be bolted out of the sky by direct damage. 2. Land recursion softens the blow of Red’s targeted and mass land destruction.  I didn’t want this to be a broken recursion engine, thus the additional sacrifice cost (which gives it it’s black feel). The Untap activation was added as a character trait. In order to find the lost realms, Altus has has to fly into the red-zone first. Or find some other way to tap.