Eternal Masters Review for Tiny Leaders (Commander)
In this article I will be discussing what Eternal Masters cards are ideal for the Tiny Leaders format and what cards are likely to see more play now we have an increased supply. Several of the better cards e.g. Vampiric Tutor are banned but there will be many cards that will be highly sought after.
We’ve only one Tiny Leaders eligible Commander in the set; Eight-and-a-Half-Tails. It would have been nice to see a tastier reprint as not all the best cards, for example Angus Mackenzie, are on the Magic Reserved List so won’t be seeing a reprint any time soon, if at all.
Enlightened Tutor – One of the best tutors in the format and one that is at a premium in foil, I can see the foil versions being highly sought after.
Humble – A nice combat trick that can swing a battle in your favour.
Monk Idealist – Generally speaking, I find creatures alone aren’t powerful enough and some form of boost is helpful, my personal favourites tend to be Unflinching Courage and Behemoth Sledge. Monk Idealist allows you to return an enchantment to hand from your graveyard which can be extremely useful. It is also the first printing in foil which will attract interest.
Mother of Runes – A particularly frustrating card to play against and around. Interesting debate will be if the new artwork foil will be popular.
Brainstorm – Brainstorm is one of the best “dig spells” we have and has been printed several times in foil already. This means that new versions won’t be too expensive even with an increase in rarity from common to uncommon.
Daze – Tiny Leaders has many counters spells but the ability to surprise opponents with its alternative casting cost has surprised more than a few opponents. The foil version is highly sought after by Legacy players as well as Tiny Leaders.
Mystical Tutor – Original printings of this card were uncommon but now we have a new rare, not sure I really agree with the change as there is already a reasonable supply out their but the foil version becomes more expensive by its rarity.
Innocent Blood – A nice solid black removal spell that I’d not encountered until I saw the EMA spoiler, that’s one the wonderful things about Tiny Leaders, you can use cards from the history of Magic and sometimes its refreshing to find an older card that maybe should be a staple or already is in other play groups.
Sinkhole – Land destruction can be quite potent in Tiny Leaders but normally only if a colour can be locked down. Destroying a utility land can be extremely beneficial or a man land.
Toxic Deluge – Mass removal in the format is at a premium and Toxic Deluge is one of the best, the life loss additional cost tends to largely irrelevant if you’re going to be taking significantly more damage than the life loss. The previous printing was only in a Commander set, this is the first printing in foil and already commands a hefty price tag.
Chain Lightning – A solid three damage for one red mana which gets really interesting in red match ups with the potential to return fire.
Dualcaster Mage – An interesting tricksy card, copying an instant or sorcery has the potential to swing a match. A card that can make the difference at a key stage in a match.
Firebolt – A nice little removal or finisher with the added flash back bonus. A solid red pick.
Sulfuric Vortex – A lovely little sideboard card that can stop life gain strategies but create a clock with all players losing life during their upkeep, the opponent should be under more pressure though as a red deck is designed to go faster.
Young Pyromancer – This card works really well in the format creating an army of elemental’s as well from the supporting instants and sorceries. The foil version for the original was never cheap and it won’t be the same for the newest version. It’s a card though that has to be built around and cannot be forced into any red build to make the most of its potential.
Argothian Enchantress – A lovely card to build around, probably in some form of Bogle deck. I have personally built a Bant creature deck with enchantments to support it and this card would really help the deck progress and draw into good cards. For those not aware what a Bogle deck is, you get creatures with Hexproof and add enchantments to them to make them bigger, the most famous being Slippery Bogle.
Rancor – One of the best enchantment aura’s the game has ever seen and has been a Standard staple in each of its original printings. This is a very good card in Tiny Leaders as resources are limited so the fact it can come back to hand when its host is killed makes it more valuable than usual.
Sylvan Library – Card draw is useful, card draw in green is even better. Whilst the four life cost per card is high we also have the additional five starting life in Tiny Leaders to play with.
Armadillo Cloak – This is an excellent card, it has pseudo life link so it will stack with a life linker and can be used on an enemies creature too at a pinch. The only thing to be wary of is unlike life link the life gain is an old school trigger so don’t die before it is gained. However, this is one of my favourite cards in the whole format and manages to find its way into any green white based build I do. It’s an inexpensive card with previous printings and an FNM promo too, the new artwork doesn’t have the original feel for me but I’ll no doubt grab a copy.
Baleful Strix – I’ve had several decks with my old friend Baleful Strix, now we will finally get a foil printing, even if at rare, it will be a highly sought after card when opened.
Dack Fayden – With a limited supply from one previous printing in Conspiracy this will be a hot card, very few planes walkers are available in Tiny Leaders. Dack Fayden was played from Conspiracy and will continue to be played more now.
Vindicate – Vindicate has always been a great card and exiling a permanent at sorcery speed is powerful and should be a staple in decks running black and white.
Chrome Mox – This is a powerful card but its effectiveness comes at a much larger cost as you don’t have any spare copies of spells in a singleton format to imprint.
Isochron Scepter – A very solid and dependable card, being able to repeatedly use a 2 or 1 mana instant is awesome.
Sensei’s Divining Top – Why isn’t this card banned ? Whilst I have a deck or two with this card in it, it’s a card I don’t like facing as mainly it just slows down the game to a level where 1-0 is an acceptable win.
Maze of Ith – I remember this card from The Dark set and its pretty fun in Commander, I’ve not really used it in the more aggressive Tiny Leaders format as I tend to prefer land drops that generate mana. Maybe I’m wrong on this, has any readers got feedback on this neat land.
So is buying a box of Eternal Masters good for a Tiny Leaders player or potential Tiny Leaders player?
Well if you play other casual formats like Commander then a box becomes an attractive proposition, however, as a stand lone option to get into the format a more conventional set would be better as you can get a tribe of creatures to build around and probably pick up a commander for your deck.
Eternal Masters offers nothing new to Tiny Leaders, but then it’s not supposed too. However, for those who like to pimp their decks with foils will find increased accessibility to foils with several cards getting a foil printing at long last (Anyone got me a foil Baleful Strix …).
I usually do a summary of the best cards in a set, this time I’m going to do something slightly different as I’m going to do my personal Top Five Wanted Cards but also in foil.
Top 5 Must Have Foil Eternal Masters Cards For Tiny Leaders
5. Mystical Tutor
This is one of my favourite cards, I remember using it at just the right time to search my library for an answer, put it to the top and draw it from another effect.
4. Enlightened Tutor
I love tutor effects and this one is really good searching out two of the best supporting strategies to decks in equipment or enchantments.
3. Baleful Strix
Slightly restrictive in its colour combinations but still a unique threat and problem solver.
2. Isochron Scepter
As the Scepter is colourless it gives it more flexibility to be used in multiple decks. I’ve rarely used this card as I wasn’t really around when it was first printed.
1. Toxic Deluge
My favourite deck is Abzan with Anafenza, the Foremost as my Commander. Well actually I have three decks based around her as I’ve tried out many different cards though the main version is majorly pimped, it would be all foil apart from some cards have never been printed in foil. I feel this card is such a good fit in my favourite deck and will also look great in the deck.
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