The Best Modern Cards from Wilds of Eldraine
Last weekend was Prerelease weekend for Wilds of Eldraine! Meaning, with the new Wizards policy on card legality, we have our first Modern results with Wilds of Eldraine cards. While not as impactful as Lord of the Rings, this set certainly has some cards that will see play, even though some may not be very exciting.
Not Dead After All
Without further ado, the card that will see the most Modern play is not a Mythic, Rare, or even Uncommon, but a Common card in Not Dead After All. This card is a slight upgrade to the already top deck in the meta-game: Rakdos Scam. Scam previously used cards like Feign Death and Undying Malice, but now run 4 Not Dead After All as an almost pure upgrade. In the SCG Columbus 20k one player went 5-0 in a RCQ with a very stock scam list using 4 Not Dead After All and 2 Undying Evil. Recently Undying Evil has not been played often as it doesn’t work in multiples. Undying Evil vs Feign Death is now a bit of a debate as Undying Evil doesn’t return tapped, but if you draw both Undying Evil the second one will be slightly dead as it won’t return a creature with a +1/+1 counter. Not Dead After All’s extra ping won’t be a huge upgrade, but is still almost strictly better. The one case where it is not strictly better is in the Rhinos matchup where an Engineered Explosive on 0 will also destroy your enchantment. Overall, this card isn’t too exciting and is more of a thorn in the side of anyone who already disliked playing against scam.
Example list that went 6-0-2 in SCG Con Columbus
Up the Beanstalk
Another archetype that got an interesting new option is 4c Omnath. The deck plays a combination of the highest power level cards and looks to extend the game to leverage the power of cards like The One Ring and Omnath, Locus of Creation. Up the Beanstalk is a 2 mana enchantment that replaces itself and also draws you a card when you play a spell that costs 5 or more mana. In 4c Omnath this turns your Fury and Solitude into card parity when evoked, and 3-for-1’s when hard cast for 5 mana. Before getting too excited though there have been plenty of cards hyped up for 4c Omnath. Nissa, Resurgent Animist was hyped as a 4-of auto-include in the deck and now is at max a 1-of. Not only that but Fury also was not even played as a 4-of in many Pro-Tour lists. It seems questionable to now increase a card falling out of favor in the archetype to make a new somewhat questionable card better. While Up the Beanstalk seems sick, I will remain hesitant as I don’t know if this is enough for a format as strong as Modern.
Beseech The Mirror
Beseech the Mirror is by far one of the most hyped cards in the set and is also strongly overrated. A 4 mana tutor is really bad and most decks do not play enough Artifacts, Enchantments or tokens for the Bargain to be remotely relevant. Mono-Black Coffers won a challenge this weekend and is often referred to when Beseech the Mirror is brought up as it can get Sheoldred, Karn, and The One Ring. But the deck runs only 3 Artifacts and 4 Orcish Bowmasters. If the deck were to play Beseech the Mirror it’d have to be largely restructured to make the card even defendable. This card can be good but at it’s core for it it will almost always be a 2-for-1.
Elvish Architect is a card I am highly skeptical of but has some great synergy with Urza's Saga. Dying to Orcish Bowmasters likely kills it as a metagame player. However, with a fully utilized Urza’s Saga it can be a two mana 4/5 that draws a card. This is because Urza’s Saga is an enchantment meaning it draws a card, makes two Constructs and Tutor’s one artifact to the field which each add two counters (but only trigger once each turn). When Yawgmoth is running 0-3 one toughness creatures (that aren’t young wolf or bowmasters) it is highly unlikely that a 2-mana 0/1 will see play.
Syr Ginger, The Meal Ender
Syr Ginger, The Meal Ender is a bit silly but could very feasibly see play as a 1-2 of in Hardened Scales. It can grow very large and allow you to dig very very deep in your deck due to the scrying. Additionally Hardened Scales got 3rd in the challenge this Saturday being played by Aspiring Spike. The deck is often underrated but exceeds when played by skilled players. This card has the same weakness as Elvish Architect though as 1 toughness is a serious downside. In Hardened Scales it can grow much quicker and be protected more easily, but a card that opens itself up to just dying to a turn 2 Bowmasters could likely be too much of a risk.