NJ’s Eventide Constructed Review

Posted on Wednesday, July 16th, 2008 by NicotineJones
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Posted in mtg, strategy

Same deal as usual. If I don’t talk about a card, I don’t think it’s going to see play in any constructed format.

I mostly care about block, standard, and extended.

I’ll make an effort to respond to comments/criticisms/arguments; I usually make a couple of big mistakes per review and then a bunch of little ones, and often the comment thread illuminates those mistakes in a timely fashion.

Again, it’s been quite some time since I have actually played MTG, so take this all with a generous pinch of salt.

Archon of Justice


Creature – Archon



When Archon of Justice is put into a graveyard from play, remove target permanent from the game.

It used to be that you were getting a pretty good deal when you paid 5 mana for your 4/4 flier, but that is increasingly no longer the case—5 mana is when creatures start to get really, really powerful. Obviously the effect is nice, but I can’t ultimately see this being a great card since it is actively difficult to trigger the rfg effect when you want it triggered.

If you were fighting a straight up attrition war, or otherwise were in a situation where you cared about getting a 2-for-1 and didn’t care how long it took you to do it, then Archon would be attractive.

Endless Horizons



When Endless Horizons comes into play, search your library for any number of Plains cards and remove them from the game. Then shuffle your library.

At the beginning of your upkeep, you may put a card you own removed from the game with Endless Horizons into your hand.

I see Endless Horizons as a potential sleeper hit. The effect is powerful and many decks in the past would have wanted it on their side, but it may suffer from its block— unless there’s something Charbelchy out there (and I guess there might be) this isn’t powerful enough for extended and the incentive to have a manabase that is largely composed of non-plains cards is very strong as long as Lorwyn block is legal.



Creature – Elemental



When Flickerwisp comes into play, remove another target permanent from the game. Return that card to play under its owner’s control at end of turn.

The body is actually all right for 3 mana if you can find something useful to do with the effect. Options include resetting perms that run themselves down somehow, reusing CiP effects, and killing auras. There’s not too many CiP effects at less than 3 mana, so that puts the kibosh on that a little bit.

At 2/2 this probably would have been interesting in some respect with Reveillark, which is probably why it’s 3/1.

Hallowed Burial



Put all creatures on the bottom of their owners’ libraries.

Important in block, largely irrelevant elsewhere.




Change the text of target spell or permanent by replacing all instances of one color word with another.

Retrace (You may play this card from your graveyard by discarding a land card in addition to paying its other costs.)

Sometimes cards like this find a narrow usually-sideboard application, and this is a pretty potent version of the archetype.




Return all nonblue creatures to their owners’ hands.

It’s possible that this could see some use as a SB card if there’s a blue-based creature deck that has a matchup that tends to bog down.

Wake Thrasher


Creature – Merfolk Soldier


Whenever a permanent you control becomes untapped, Wake Thrasher gets +1/+1 until end of turn.

It’s pretty burly on offense, but I think the fragility and total lack of evasion or utility kill it. Merfolk is a phenomenal creature type to have, though.

Ashling, the Extinguisher
Legendary Creature – Elemental Shaman
Whenever Ashling, the Extinguisher deals combat damage to a player, choose target creature that player controls. He or she sacrifices that creature.

The problem with this guy is that he’s only good at beating up small things and he isn’t that large—he’s going to get chumped a lot. The good news is that he’s got 4 toughness and is black, which sometimes is enough since that lets you dodge a lot of removal. Would have been nice if he’d been able to nail pro-black creatures, but alas. Might make it in block but frankly I doubt it.



Creature – Elemental


Wither (This deals damage to creatures in the form of -1/-1 counters.)

Whenever a creature an opponent controls with a -1/-1 counter on it is put into a graveyard, you may return that card to play under your control.

This is another pretty resilient guy who could be very annoying against decks that want to attack you on the ground. It is however mildly annoying that if you steal the other fellow’s persist guy, they get it back the next time it dies.

Nightmare Incursion



Search target player’s library for up to X cards, where X is the number of Swamps you control, and remove them from the game. Then that player shuffles his or her library.

I wanted to point out the specific circumstances under which this would be a viable SB card but frankly they’re not going to happen so don’t worry about it too much. (You need a deck that plays 15ish swamps going up against a deck that has a very limited number of win conditions.)

Raven’s Crime



Target player discards a card.

Retrace (You may play this card from your graveyard by discarding a land card in addition to paying its other costs.)

While Crime isn’t godly, it’s a very inexpensive way to consistently control the other fellow’s ability to hold cards in hand. If you’re a mana-flooded aggro deck with this as one of your action cards, you’re probably still going to lose anyway but at least you can try to make your opponent pull some of their answers off the top of the deck. This is also one of the best ways to rapidly turn the game into a low-resource slugfest— an opening like Swamp, Crime, Swamp, Crime, Crime is really going to hamper the other guy’s ability to play his normal manacurve to its conclusion, although obviously you’re light on resources yourself in that scenario. In that respect it reminds me a little bit of Pox and related cards.

I think this may wind up seeing extended play at some point.

Soul Snuffers


Creature – Elemental Shaman


When Soul Snuffers comes into play, put a -1/-1 counter on each creature.

If this is 187ing things, then it’s pretty solid. Otherwise, not so much.

Chaotic Backlash



Chaotic Backlash deals damage to target player equal to twice the number of white and/or blue permanents he or she controls.

Backlash could wind up being pretty important at the block-ish level. There are a lot of white token-generators, and sending one of these to the face isn’t a bad response to Cloudgoat Ranger.

Flame Jab


Flame Jab deals 1 damage to target creature or player.

Retrace (You may play this card from your graveyard by discarding a land card in addition to paying its other costs.)

This is kind of like super-ghetto Lava Dart and probably fits in a lot of the same places. If there are many 1-toughness dorks to kill, the stock goes up.

Puncture Blast



Wither (This deals damage to creatures in the form of -1/-1 counters.)

Puncture Blast deals 3 damage to target creature or player.

Standard-issue 3 damage for 3 mana. This stuff normally floats around the periphery of playability.

Rekindled Flame



Rekindled Flame deals 4 damage to target creature or player.

At the beginning of your upkeep, if an opponent has no cards in hand, you may return Rekindled Flame from your graveyard to your hand.

4 for 4 at sorcery speed isn’t good but it isn’t awful, and if you get to do it twice that’s pretty cool. Unfortunately I think it’s too easy for the other guy to keep you from recovering Flame for it to do its trick.

Stigma Lasher


Creature – Elemental Shaman


Wither (This deals damage to creatures in the form of -1/-1 counters.)

Whenever Stigma Lasher deals damage to a player, that player can’t gain life for the rest of the game.

This is not rocket science here—the more lifegain there is in the environment the better Stigma Lasher looks. 2 mana for a wither bear doesn’t have you pumping the fist but it’s acceptable if the other trick is going to be useful for you.

Also, Fiery Justice you.



Creature – Elemental



Thunderblust has trample as long as it has a -1/-1 counter on it.

Persist (When this creature is put into a graveyard from play, if it had no -1/-1 counters on it, return it to play under its owner’s control with a -1/-1 counter on it.)

Now we’re talking. This is a huge hasty beatstick that needs to be killed twice. It hates clogged boards and requires a heavy red commitment, and both of those things are a problem, but if you are a deck that can cast this and keep the table clean it’s going to be very, very annoying for your opponent. Also, comes out t3 off of a Smokebraider and off of a Soulstoke you get to keep it with a counter on it.

Unwilling Recruit



Gain control of target creature until end of turn. Untap that creature. It gets +X/+0 and gains haste until end of turn.

Threaten has been good enough in monored or near-monored decks in the past and this is better than Threaten in those decks.

Bloom Tender


Creature – Elf Druid


T For each color among permanents you control, add one mana of that color to your mana pool.

Potentially explosive, especially if your manabase is larded with hybrid spells in other colors. There are a couple of attractive 1CC hybrid creatures that you would potentially want to play; Figure of Destiny is probably top among these and that sets you up for some very big t3s. That said, I don’t think you can count on getting more than 1 mana out of Bloom Tender regularly. It’s still better than something like Leaf Gilder, though.

Helix Pinnacle




X: Put X tower counters on Helix Pinnacle.

At the beginning of your upkeep, if there are 100 or more tower counters on Helix Pinnacle, you win the game.

This is a win condition you might like if you’re the kind of person who likes this sort of win condition.

Nettle Sentinel


Creature – Elf Warrior


Nettle Sentinel doesn’t untap during your untap step.

Whenever you play a green spell, you may untap Nettle Sentinel.

My feeling is that the drawback is annoying too often for this to see play, but it’s got a chance. Better in environments where you can reasonably expect to trade off a 2/2 early.



Creature – Elemental



Chroma – Primalcrux’s power and toughness are each equal to the number of green mana symbols in the mana costs of permanents you control.

I’m a sucker for big beaters with trample, and Primalcrux is almost always going to be the biggest guy on the board. 6 mana and having to play monogreen is a big price tag, though.

Twinblade Slasher


Creature – Elf Warrior


Wither (This deals damage to creatures in the form of -1/-1 counters.)

1G: Twinblade Slasher gets +2/+2 until end of turn. Play this ability only once each turn.

Solid, but there are a lot of things that want you to spend mana on them right now. Still, this is a legitimate one-drop that stays combat-relevant after bigger things hit the table. I think this sees standard-level play.



Artifact Creature – Scarecrow


1, Sacrifice a Scarecrow: Draw a card.

4, T Return target artifact creature card from your graveyard to play.

edit: I thought about saying something about Scarecrone and wasn’t going to, but apparently I left it in the list, so here goes. The second ability is quite strong. You can do a number of abusive things by recurring artifact creatures, and the price is not excessive. However, the body is pretty weak and I think that the available suite of artifact creatures just aren’t good enough to make this sing right now.

Balefire Liege

2(R / W)(R / W)(R / W)

Creature – Spirit Horror


Other red creatures you control get +1/+1.

Other white creatures you control get +1/+1.

Whenever you play a red spell, Balefire Liege deals 3 damage to target player.

Whenever you play a white spell, you gain 3 life.

Tacking a lava spike on to all of your red spells is very exciting, but 5 mana is still a lot to pay for that privilege and an underwhelming body.

Batwing Brume

1(W / B)


Prevent all combat damage that would be dealt this turn if W was spent to play Batwing Brume. Each player loses 1 life for each attacking creature he or she controls if B was spent to play Batwing Brume. (Do both if WB was spent.)

If there’s a WB deck that wants to race another deck, the Brume may find a fit in the SB.

Crag Puca

(U / R)(U / R)(U / R)

Creature – Shapeshifter


o(u/r): Switch Crag Puca’s power and toughness until end of turn.

3-mana 2/4s occasionally wind up being useful just because they have a huge ass and are generally good at fighting other things that cost 3 mana or less.

Deity of Scars

(B / G)(B / G)(B / G)(B / G)(B / G)

Creature – Spirit Avatar



Deity of Scars comes into play with two -1/-1 counters on it.

o(b/g), Remove a -1/-1 counter from Deity of Scars: Regenerate Deity of Scars.

This is one hard, hard beastie to take down, and it has evasion, and it hits hard, and it’s in an attractive color combination. I think this sees quite a bit of play in standard and block.

Duergar Hedge-Mage

2(R / W)

Creature – Dwarf Shaman


When Duergar Hedge-Mage comes into play, if you control two or more Mountains, you may destroy target artifact.

When Duergar Hedge-Mage comes into play, if you control two or more Plains, you may destroy target enchantment.

Acceptable as an Uktabi Orangutan or as a walking disenchant in the appropriate color, if your mana justifies it.


3(W / B)(W / B)

Creature – Elemental Spirit



Evershrike gets +2/+2 for each Aura attached to it.

Xo(w/b)o(w/b): Return Evershrike from your graveyard to play. You may put an Aura card with converted mana cost X or less from your hand into play attached to it. If you don’t, remove Evershrike from the game.

I really, really wanted this to be awesome, and I don’t think it is, quite. It does do a pretty good job recycling Prison Terms, though.

Figure of Destiny

(R / W)

Creature – Kithkin


o(r/w): Figure of Destiny becomes a 2/2 Kithkin Spirit.

o(r/w)o(r/w)o(r/w): If Figure of Destiny is a Spirit, it becomes a 4/4 Kithkin Spirit Warrior.

o(r/w)o(r/w)o(r/w)o(r/w)o(r/w)o(r/w): If Figure of Destiny is a Warrior, it becomes an 8/8 Kithkin Spirit Warrior Avatar with flying and first strike.

Plan on getting Figure to 2/2 most games, but it’s not pushy about when you pay the mana. Sometimes you’ll get it to 4/4 rapidly, and although it won’t happen particularly often there will probably be times you make it a 4/4 the turn it comes down and swing for the fences with an 8/8 the turn after. It might not be quite good enough for extended, but it’ll see standard play.

Gwyllion Hedge-Mage

2(W / B)

Creature – Hag Wizard


When Gwyllion Hedge-Mage comes into play, if you control two or more Plains, you may put a 1/1 white Kithkin Soldier creature token into play.

When Gwyllion Hedge-Mage comes into play, if you control two or more Swamps, you may put a -1/-1 counter on target creature.

Probably is good enough to see play in mono-white decks.

Hag Hedge-Mage

2(B / G)

Creature – Hag Shaman


When Hag Hedge-Mage comes into play, if you control two or more Swamps, you may have target player discard a card.

When Hag Hedge-Mage comes into play, if you control two or more Forests, you may put target card in your graveyard on top of your library.

Not terrible as a plus-size Ravenous Rats.

Inside Out

1(U / R)


Switch target creature’s power and toughness until end of turn.

Draw a card.

Well, it does kill Wall of Roots and Doran, and cantrips while doing so; those are useful qualities so in the right metagame maybe somebody wants to play this guy.

Mirror Sheen

1(U / R)(U / R)


1o(u/r)o(u/r): Copy target instant or sorcery spell that targets you. You may choose new targets for the copy.

Insert commentary about obvious Early Harvest stuff here. I can’t say that I see another use for it right off the bat. It’s probably somewhat better than Reiterate for that function, but it’s not a blowout.

Nobilis of War

(R / W)(R / W)(R / W)(R / W)(R / W)

Creature – Spirit Avatar



Attacking creatures you control get +2/+0.

This guy was so much better as originally spoiled, with haste instead of flying. As is, I don’t think it sees much play.

Overbeing of Myth

(G / U)(G / U)(G / U)(G / U)(G / U)

Creature – Spirit Avatar


Overbeing of Myth’s power and toughness are each equal to the number of cards in your hand.

At the beginning of your draw step, draw a card.

I want to like this guy, and I think stapling a Howling Mine to the forehead of what is likely to be a reasonably-sized creature is a great idea in principle. I worry that the mana will be difficult and I worry that there will be too many times that Overbeing isn’t big enough.

Pyrrhic Revival

3(W / B)(W / B)(W / B)


Each player returns each creature card in his or her graveyard to play with an additional -1/-1 counter on it.

Peebles thought that this had a chance of being a player in something like Reveillark, where you could return a full yard and just push people’s faces in with the renewed CiP effects. I think there’s something to that plan. It could also be good enough in some kind of more conventional draw/discard Reanimator strategy.


2(B / G)

Creature – Beast


o(b/g), Remove a -1/-1 counter from a creature you control: Quillspike gets +3/+3 until end of turn.

Obviously the combo with Devoted Druid is potent but brittle, and in a deck with Profane Command you may wind up getting a significant number of oops-I-win kills even through some resistance. I think that the combo is too fragile to be the centerpiece of a deck, but if it turns out that you’re not punting too many games otherwise because you keep drawing these goddamn Quillspikes then game on. Devoted Druid is a playable card on its own merits, so the cost of having access to the combo is low.

Rendclaw Trow

2(B / G)

Creature – Troll


Wither (This deals damage to creatures in the form of -1/-1 counters.)

Persist (When this creature is put into a graveyard from play, if it had no -1/-1 counters on it, return it to play under its owner’s control with a -1/-1 counter on it.)

Persist dudes that beat up other persist dudes are cool. Maybe not good enough, but cool.

Restless Apparition

(W / B)(W / B)(W / B)

Creature – Spirit


o(w/b)o(w/b)o(w/b): Restless Apparition gets +3/+3 until end of turn.

Persist (When this creature is put into a graveyard from play, if it had no -1/-1 counters on it, return it to play under its owner’s control with a -1/-1 counter on it.)

I can see this being a pretty good card in a controlling strategy, where your plan is to just kind of run it out there and block something random with it on t3 and then to use the threat of pumping it to hold off the other fellow afterwards while you do something instant-speed with your mana.

Rise of the Hobgoblins

(R / W)(R / W)


When Rise of the Hobgoblins comes into play, you may pay X. If you do, put X 1/1 red and white Goblin Soldier creature tokens into play.

o(r/w): Red creatures and white creatures you control gain first strike until end of turn.

Obviously this is no Decree of Justice, but we don’t have Decree of Justice right now. I think that the ability to generate a large number of creature tokens is essentially pretty good and this does so at a very reasonable price, plus gives you some first-striking mojo if that turns out to be worth anything.

Sapling of Colfenor

3(B / G)(B / G)

Legendary Creature – Treefolk Shaman


Sapling of Colfenor is indestructible.

Whenever Sapling of Colfenor attacks, reveal the top card of your library. If it’s a creature card, you gain life equal to that card’s toughness, lose life equal to its power, then put it into your hand.

This is only as good or as bad as an expensive indestructible creature is in the environment. 2/5s are mostly good at blocking things, so it would have been nice if the other ability triggered on upkeep instead of on attack, but whatever.

Spitting Image

4(G / U)(G / U)


Put a token into play that’s a copy of target creature.

Retrace (You may play this card from your graveyard by discarding a land card in addition to paying its other costs.)

Getting to 6 mana with this guy will make it quite difficult for the other fellow to kill you with big creatures, since you always have the option to mirror his drops and will usually have the option to continue to do so. I think this is a pretty strong card for a deck that hits 6 mana fast and doesn’t mind tapping out. That said, if you’re copying your own fatties then this is probably win-more; so it wants to be played in a situation where both players have fat.

Stillmoon Cavalier

1(W / B)(W / B)

Creature – Zombie Knight


Protection from white and from black

o(w/b): Stillmoon Cavalier gains flying until end of turn.

o(w/b): Stillmoon Cavalier gains first strike until end of turn.

o(w/b)o(w/b): Stillmoon Cavalier gets +1/+0 until end of turn.

Double protection is always nice, although it’s hard for me to get excited about the pumpknight suite of abilities anymore. Mana is more precious than it once was and creature quality is higher.


(W / B)(W / B)(W / B)


Remove target creature from the game.

If you can swing the mana, this is clean, simple removal. It needs to fit into something that’s already a deck, though. Kithkin can probably play this quite handily.

Cascade Bluffs


T Add 1 to your mana pool.

o(u/r), T Add UU, UR, or RR to your mana pool.

Fetid Heath


T Add 1 to your mana pool.

o(w/b), T Add WW, WB, or BB to your mana pool.

Flooded Grove


T Add 1 to your mana pool.

o(g/u), T Add GG, GU, or UU to your mana pool.

Rugged Prairie


T Add 1 to your mana pool.

o(r/w), T Add RR, RW, or WW to your mana pool.

Twilight Mire


T Add 1 to your mana pool.

o(b/g), T Add BB, BG, or GG to your mana pool.

All very nice lands to have in the mix. You do need to be a little careful—playing 3 colors with 12 hybrid lands is going to get you manascrewed regularly. That said, I think you’re fine with between 6 and 8 lands that make colorless by default in a typical deck.