Kaldheim Candidates for Legacy
- Robert Swiecki
Kaldheim is not an overpowered set. I am inclined to add "fortunately" to this statement because Legacy has been on a wild ride since 2019. A little change of pace does us good. So let's take a relaxed stroll through the snowy scenery and take a look at the candidates that might find a place in Legacy …
It is a great weapon against Reanimator, Dredge, Storm, and Dreadhorde Arcanist, and could see play in Eldrazi and in various flavors of other Stompy decks. Traditionally, those decks had problems casting potent graveyard hate cards because their taxing artifacts make casting spells for zero and one mana quite problematic. Leyline of the Void has been used widely for a number of years, but the Runestone could fight it, because it is still powerful even when drawn later in the game.
Valki // Tibalt
At first glance, not very impressive, the two-drop here has a decent enter-the-battlefield trigger, but that is not what makes Valki, God of Lies // Tibalt, Cosmic Impostor exciting. It is the combination with the planeswalker that allows for a neat trick using the cascade mechanic. Basically, one can cast the back side of the card when cascading into it, for example with Shardless Agent or Bloodbraid Elf. You can check out why this works in this video. To sum it up, Tibalt is a cast option of the card, and whenever you're allowed to cast it without paying its mana cost, you can pick either side.
Tibalt then provides the player with a solid emblem from the beginning. His abilities are not shabby either, if not exactly mind blowing.
Do you remember the old four-color deck that went all in on cascading? Maybe it's time to revisit it. It would certainly be a refreshing sight in a format overrun by Oko, Thief of Crowns and Uro, Titan of Nature's Wrath. On the other hand, who can say for sure that both cards would not find their way into that deck as well? If that is too crazy for you, Valki and Tibalt are also a nice fit for classic Shardless BUG lists that got pushed out of the format. But it remains to be seen if cascading into Ancestral Vision, Baleful Strix, or Hymn to Tourach is not the better option still.
If you want to read more about Tibalt, especially in other formats—Rodrigo has dedicated a full article to the card!
Apart from being a Pauper playable, Ravenform provides monoblue with an answer to problematic permanents and does not just return them to their owner's hand. Does anyone remember Sea Stompy, a deck that paired old school classics like Sea Drake and Serendib Efreet with modern Magic cards such as Venser, Shaper Savant and True-Name Nemesis? A revival of this deck seems highly unlikely, but Ravenform would make for a solid addition to this kind of card pool. Nowadays, it also cleanly answers Uro.
In Search of Greatness
Faintly resembling Birthing Pod and Food Chain in some ways, but totally different in others, In Search of Greatness is an interesting two-mana enchantment that could theoretically add speed to decks with many expensive permanents. Monogreen Stompy, also known as Sylvan Plug, comes to mind, some Loam build or Primeval Titan ramp … or maybe it should spark a new deck. While the odds of that happening look far better in other formats, I would not write it off entirely for Legacy either.
After all, we could quickly unlock some high-cost permanent with an early Hooting Mandrills, Gurmag Angler, Stormwing Entity, or even Myr Enforcer. I'm not sure that any of these ideas will be powerful enough, or work reliably enough, to be worth the effort. We may forever remain in search of greatness.
Here's a comparatively tame Stompy list. It can use Green Sun's Zenith to search up a creature of the appropriate cost for whatever we want to cast for free with In Search of Greatness, which is neat in theory at least. In practice, the enchantment will often just provide a free scry.
|In Search of Greatness Stompy|
Even More Cards
Ascendant Spirit: The blue Figure of Destiny seems to be too weak for current Legacy strategies. On the other hand, it is a great mana sink and potent win option at the same time. Though there may be problems producing this much snow mana consistently.
Mystic Reflection: Turning planeswalkers into creatures and creating some spectacular board states? Well, look no further than Mystic Reflection. It also works with opponents' creatures and renders them more or less useless if there is a token or another irrelevant creature on the battlefield.
Spirit of the Aldergard: To be honest, I do not really think that this card is good enough for Legacy. But it screams Dark Depths and there might be a world where having a blocker is useful; or it being a creature spell dodging counterspells like Spell Pierce and Flusterstorm; or getting around Spell Snare.
Vega, the Watcher: Likely too cute for Legacy but works well with flashback. A blue 2/2 flier for three mana is not that bad, but if it finds play in Legacy, then surely not in any kind of control build. I could see this being part of a draw engine of some kind of spell-taxing deck.
Tibalt's Trickery: I had to read this card a couple of times before I fully understood its effect. As a counter for opponents' spells it seems like a high-risk move, but countering your own spell can lead to some crazy interaction. Nonetheless, Tibalt's Trickery simply asks too much, and the randomness poses a greater obstacle than a possible merit. I am sure it is easier to bring Emrakul, the Aeons Torn into play via Stronghold Gambit than trying to be tricky with Tibalt's spell. But I might be missing something here; maybe there is a combo deck out there that can survive the harsh Legacy environment. What I've seen so far doesn't bode well though.
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