Hidden Gems from The Brother’s War
Hello everyone! Welcome to Standard Weekly!
I hope everyone had a chance to get out to their local LGS to participate in The Brothers’ War events. Set launch events are a great way to introduce new players to the game and get back into the game after the Covid hiatus. Prereleases are a great way to get introduced to the cards in a set. Sometimes you find hidden gems that got little hype during preview season or find out that some of the most hyped cards are not as good as some believed.
Prerelease events tend to be slower standard because of the limited card availability. The Brothers’ War offered more cards than a normal prerelease because of the Retro Frame Artifacts in the set. This sped up the format.
Here are four cards that impressed me.
First, Mishra, Claimed by Gix over-preformed for me.
Getting to gain life and deal damage to my opponent just for attacking was a very powerful ability. Typically, I attacked with three or four creatures when Mishra was in play. This meant that my opponent really needed to kill Mishra, but that proved to be a difficult task because of his five toughness. I see Mishra in a midrange deck, but I can see him in an aggressive deck that can get creatures in play early in the game and then you can play Mishra to get in additional damage.
I played Autonomous Assembler in a Grixis deck.
Autonomous Assembler has a white prototype cost. Its ability to give itself or another assembly worker a +1/+1 counter was a helpful ability. Vigilance turned out to be a powerful ability because we do not typically see vigilance on a large creature. Autonomous Assembler was a solid attacker and blocker that made my opponent’s make tough decisions when attacking and blocking. Autonomous Assembler’s prototype cost makes it an interesting include in white decks.
Bladecoil Serpent could be one of the best cards in standard assuming that midrange decks continue to dominate standard.
For six mana, you get a 5/4 serpent that is an artifact creature. Those stats are not overwhelming, but Bladecoil Serpent’s abilities are what make the card powerful. Depending on what mana you spend to cast Bladecoil Serpent you get extra value. For each two blue mana you spend, you get to draw a card. For each two black mana you spend, you have each opponent discard a card. For each two red mana you spend, Bladecoil gets +1/+0 and gains trample and haste. It was easy to get at least two of these abilities to activate and sometimes all three. You can also spend extra mana to activate the abilities more than once. I don’t see Bladecoil Serpent as a four-of in Grixis decks, but two or three copies makes sense in a midrange-dominated format.
Skystrike Officer played much better than I anticipated. For three mana, you get a 2/3 human soldier with flying. On its own,
Skystrike officer is a solid creature, but his ability made him a nearly unstoppable force at the prerelease. Making a 1/1 colorless soldier artifact creature each time it attacked turned out to be a game-changing ability because it allowed my opponent to tap three untapped soldiers and draw a card. This kept my opponent ahead on cards and board presence. That matchup was my only match loss of the night.
Here is an updated soldiers list: