The Modern Horizons 3 Leaks are Incredible Powerful for Commander

5 MTG Modern Horizons cards that are crazy good for Commander

The Modern Horizons 3 Leaks are Incredible Powerful for Commander

Is Modern Horizons 3 secretly a Commander set in disguise? These days, every set has ramifications for the eternal and ever-popular Commander format. The highly anticipated sequel to the fan-favorite Modern Horizons line will be released in mid June and somehow, intrepid players have got their hands on product early, flooding the web with poorly-lighted leaks.

These leaks are clearly unofficial, as preview season hasn’t begun. Despite the poor image quality, many of these look legit, with properly aligned holograms and no ridiculously unrealistic effects and abilities on cards. There is a strong emphasis on the colorless Eldrazis in Modern Horizons 3, and while this will impact Commander, we’ve been on the lookout for more cards that have wider use cases and can fit into virtually any deck in the same colors.

We also avoided listing down any reprints, as these are already well known to be Commander staples. Cards such as Priest of Titania and Meltdown are already powerful cards in the multiplayer setting so we’re not going to insult players’ intelligence.

Final Act – Black Gets Its Own Farewell

When Farewell first came into the scene in Kamigawa: Neon Dynasty, it became the ultimate board-wipe card in Commander. Fittingly in white (which is flooded with similar “destroy all” effects), Farewell provided something more: the ability to Exile rather than Destroy, and also to choose multiple modes rather than one. It’s a ton of value for just 6 Mana to be able to Exile any combination of Creatures, Enchantments, Artifacts and Graveyards as you see fit.

Finally in Modern Horizons 3, black gets its own version, even if on first glance it doesn’t seem quite as game changing. Final Act gives the option to destroy all Planeswalkers and Battles, something that Farewell cannot do, while it can also Exile Graveyards. The two clear drawbacks to Final Act is that it only destroys Creatures, which will be ineffective against anything with Indestructible.

The last mode of stripping counters will need a little more clarification. If this merely refers to Poison and Experience counters that opponents have, then rarely you’ll find yourself activating this mode. However, if it also includes all manner of counters, such as +1/+1 counters on opponent’s Creatures, then this is going to be applicable in pretty much every game.

The fact that you can choose which mode(s) suit your deck or current game state makes Final Act very versatile and pretty much an auto-include in any black deck. If your deck is big on Graveyard recursion, then you may or may not want to destroy all Creatures, but perhaps you can wipe out the player that is playing Planeswalkers. Final Act willl be part of one of the preconstructed decks, so it won’t be difficult to find, but keep a close eye on the singles price as there should be an uptick in the months following release.

Flare of Denial – Another Free Counter Spell for Blue

High level gameplay for Commander is already filled with awesome counter spells with a 0 Mana alternative cost, often enabled by exiling cards. There’s the classic Force of Will, and lately Force of Negation and even the budget version Foil. Modern Horizons 3 will come with a new cycle of ‘free’ spells, and Flare of Denial is blue’s representative. Just by looking at this card’s abilities, it’s undoubtedly going to be one of the best in the series.

Flare of Denial costs a very reasonable 3 Mana to counter target spell, and is in line with all the Common rarity counter spells that get released with every new set. It’s only 1 generic Mana more than the classic Counterspell and Mana Drain and actually less than a Force of Will. To trigger the free cost of In a faeries Commander deck, the sacrifice could come from one of the many 1-cost Creatures that such a deck is built around. Whatever your Commander deck is, it would be better to have blue Creatures and not heavily reliant on non-creature spells if you want to utilise [c]Flare of Denial">Flare of Denial[c], you have to sacrifice a non-token blue Creature. This makes casting for free somewhat harder, but still very much doable.

In a faeries Commander deck, the sacrifice could come from one of the many 1-cost Creatures that such a deck is built around. Whatever your Commander deck is, it would be better to have blue Creatures and not heavily reliant on non-creature spells if you want to utilise [c]Flare of Denial as a Hail-Mary counter. Urza, Lord High Artificer unfortunately creates colorless Constructs, but throw in some blue Artifact Creatures and you should be golden.

Planar Nexus – A Must Have for all Gates or Colorless Decks

Planar Nexus is a new card from the Commander precon decks and is a Changeling of its own, able to take on any non-basic Land type. That includes the more widely known Gates, Deserts, and Urza’s Tower, Power-Plant and Mine. Again back to Artifact or colorless decks that want to generate Mana quickly, Planar Nexus‘ ability to count as any of the 3 Urza Lands will help tremendously in completing the collection.

That’s not all Planar Nexus can do. One of the greatest niche decks in Commander is built around Gates. By using Maze’s End, players are in a race to get to 10 Gates. It’s a viable strategy in most Commander games because players tend to void Land destruction, so hunting and playing gates and be safely done, even if will take a while. With only 22 Gates in the entirety of Magic, it’s a godsend to have a new Land count as a Gate.

Speaking about Maze’s End, the next hot card from Modern Horizons 3 is just perfect for such a deck.

Urza’s Cave – A Very Reliable Land Tutor

One of the biggest components of Commander games is the use of tutors to search your deck for specific cards. Tutors are seen as high-powered plays and is essentially a must-have in any competitive Commander game. Black has the most tutors, exemplified by the original Demonic Tutor that can search for any card. Other colors tend to have some form of limitation for their tutors – Artifacts or Enchantments in Enlightened Tutor and Instants/Sorceries for Mystical Tutor.

Historically, there aren’t that many ways to search for a specific Land card. Perennial cards Evolving Wilds and the various Fetch Lands can all search for either a Basic Land or a Basic Land type, but these often exclude specialty non-basic Lands. For example, searching for a City of Brass or Wasteland is hard to do unless you’re playing with black tutors, or green spells such as Crop Rotation that let you dig for any Land.

This is where Urza’s Cave comes to the rescue. It’s a non-basic Land that taps for colorless Mana can be slotted into any deck you need. For 3 Mana, you can sacrifice Urza’s Cave to put any Land from your deck into play. Maze’s End, as explained earlier, is a great choice. Or how about a Volrath’s Stronghold, Dark Depths or Nykthos, Shrine to Nyx. These are all very powerful Lands that will clearly shift the game. Urza’s Cave is set to be a very hot Uncommon when Modern Horizons 3 is released.

Winter Moon – There’s Never Enough Stax Pieces

Playing anywhere from 3-5 colors in a Commander deck opens up a lot of options for deck building as well as game interactions since you are taking the best cards from each color. However this requires a very diverse Land base and that is often fulfilled through heavy reliance on non-basic Lands. From the classic Dual Lands to Shock Lands and everything in between, some of these decks have 90% of their Lands as non-basic.

Winter Moon is cruel punishment for multicolor decks that love to rely on non-basic Lands. Clearly a play on classic stax cards Winter Orb and Blood Moon, Winter Moon only allows players to untap 1 non-basic Land each turn. For those Commander decks that run 9 non-basics out of every 10 Lands, they are effectively shut down.

Mono color decks are the polar opposite, using at least 90% basic Lands, so Winter Moon won’t affect them at all (or very little). It can be a great support card to include, even if the deck isn’t particularly built for stax. If you do play Winter Moon though, make sure you’ve got a quick and clear strategy to win the game, so that your fellow players don’t get frustrated for not being able to play.

End Step

Modern Horizons 3 is a huge set and will likely be the year’s biggest. Modern Horizons 2 sold really well thanks to strong cards Urza’s Saga and the Evoke powerhouses such as Fury and Solitude. So far, all the leaks and spoilers point towards another hugely powerful set that will reshape both Modern and Commander. If you’re not a Modern player, then these cards will serve you best in Commander. Here’s hoping you snag a few of these singles in packs, or you can get the Commander preconstructed decks and start playing right out of the box!

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