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 Post subject: Underrated Cards in EDH
AgePosted: 2019-Jun-14 11:54 am 
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Joined: 2010-Dec-10 12:16 pm
Age: Elder Dragon
Previous similar threads:
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Obviously inspired by its Overrated brother; I thought that, personally, I prefer sharing and discussing those niche/tech cards that I have found a home for in the hopes that others can enjoy the surprise at the table when you make good use of something unexpected*.

So, with that in mind, I'd like to share a few older or under-the-radar cards that I have found to perform equal or better than expected when I first tested them in my decks.

Nature's Blessing - It's no secret I love banding. It has been my favorite keyword since I first learned magic during "the Dark." Banding in EDH is soooo very underrated for defense. I would almost venture to say that any "wide" or voltron strategy could benefit from banding on defense. Wide decks, especially token, because you can do considerable damage to attackers and only lose 0 or 1 defenders in the trade. Voltron, because many of those build (IME) will attack with only the buffed guys leaving the rest on defense, and this keeps your defense alive. Sure you can Band on the attack if/when you really need to do so, but defense is where Banding shines. The ability to control how combat damage is spread... every... time... should not be overlooked; and it only takes one blocker with banding for any number of critters to dogpile an attacker and kill it dead (or at least eat all of the indestructible trample damage). And this doesn't just facilitate banding. Need instant-speed trample or first strike? Check. Need to facilitate some counters? Check. Baton of Morale can go in non-GW(GWx) decks, but isn't quite as versatile.

Phyrexian Splicer - This seems sly.... and weird; but the politics and nitpicking it allows in enormous. First blush is like "oh, I can make a flying blocker if I'm attacked" next thing I knew I was loaning keywords from one opponent to another to help the little guy or injure the front runner. Using shadow for selective "unblockable," even when it wasn't my attacker. All kinds of nifty tricks for a card that generally gets the stink eye when I first play it.

Pentad Prism - This seems so innocuous, but in any proliferate strategy it's a powerhouse. As long as you never remove the last counter, you can keep growing and splashing mana and, somehow, people keep overlooking it in threat assessment because there are usually bigger targets than "a mana rock."

What hidden or overlooked gems have you found and in what type of build do they shine?


*Note: By unexpected, I mean I have not seen more than a handful, if any, other players running these cards.

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Hazezon Tamar - Manland theme
Seshiro the Anointed - Snake Tribal
Jedit Ojanen of Efrava - Cat and Warrior Dual Tribal
Doran, the Seige Tower - Wall Tribal
Progenitus - Hydra themed Proliferate Deck
Karona, the False God - Backstabbing Hug


Last edited by Treamayne on 2019-Jun-15 11:27 am, edited 1 time in total.

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 Post subject: Re: Underrated Cards in EDH
AgePosted: 2019-Jun-14 4:54 pm 
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Joined: 2012-Sep-19 1:30 pm
Age: Elder Dragon
Hall of Gemstone: This card messes up so many multi-color decks.

Power Matrix: Good for you in combat, and good to screw with other players' combats.

Repercussion is fun in burn decks, and makes chump blocking completely irrelevant.

Neko-Te: Equipment that taps down creatures, but they don't untap when the creature leaves, but when the equipment leaves. A good option to put on chump blockers and for dealing with indestructibles. Great with creatures that can ping for damage.

Safewright Quest is a good mana fixing card, as it can grab shocks and similar.

Tranquil Grove: Repeatable mass enchantment destruction.

Evolution Charm and Dawn Charm both have multiple modes that are relevant to play.

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 Post subject: Re: Underrated Cards in EDH
AgePosted: 2019-Jun-15 1:43 am 
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Joined: 2012-Nov-27 4:39 pm
Age: Elder Dragon
Location: Midgard
I'll continue to sing praises to Pyreheart Wolf (at least in the right deck). I'll let somebody else do the talking who got to experience it in my Rakdos, Lord of Riots deck.

Sid the Chicken wrote:
Pyreheart Wolf - I was skeptical at first, but this proved to be a thorn in the side - being unable to just field a blocker and be done with it meant you got Rakdos down early, and made a boardwipe necessary... which the damn wolf survived.

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 Post subject: Re: Underrated Cards in EDH
AgePosted: 2019-Jun-15 3:55 am 

Joined: 2019-Jun-05 11:49 pm
Age: Drake
I’m a big fan of Hellraiser Goblin

Sure your creatures are forced to attack every turn, but in an aggro deck you should be doing this anyway. Having a Fervor attached to a 2/2 goblin is just great value especially in a Krenko, Mob Boss deck.


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 Post subject: Re: Underrated Cards in EDH
AgePosted: 2019-Jun-15 9:26 am 
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Joined: 2010-Jan-25 4:50 pm
Age: Elder Dragon
This thread has been around before and it's tough because the format has been around for so long, many of the underrated cards have been found out. I remember putting rhystic study into my very first EDH deck years ago when it was less than a dollar and now it's a $16 card.

Anyway, here's my contribution in this current thread:
Pulse of the Grid is a good low key draw spell, lets you dig two cards deep while dumping the irrelevant cards from your hand. I love being able to keep counter magic up and then dump it into this when nothing scary pops up.

Unexpectedly Absent is so under costed it's insane, I don't get why more people dob't use this.

Mouth of Ronom I added this card into a deck solely to kill seedborn muse and it proved its worth the very first game I played with it. A phenomenal card when you need utility creature removal in a pinch.

Lastly, manlands. They're usefulness as insta chump blockers/forced sacs, and their ability to hit planeswalkers immediately after board wipes has always been appreciated.

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Derevi (Manlands)
Marchesa (Modular)
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Krenko, Mob Boss (Goblins)
Zedruu the Christmas Goat (group hug)
Ramses Overdark (Assassin Deck)


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 Post subject: Re: Underrated Cards in EDH
AgePosted: 2019-Jun-15 11:39 am 
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Joined: 2010-Dec-10 12:16 pm
Age: Elder Dragon
Extraplanar Lens, especially paired with Snow basics, can make a great lopsided mana doubler. Admittedly, this seems very popular in some metas, while others have never seen this hit the table before.

Predator, Flagship is rapidly becoming one of my go-to solutions for tribal decks that have "issues" with fliers. Especially outside of green where most of the anti-flier tech is found. In practice, I have found it even more flexible than expected. It reminds me of the old Merfolk Assassin/War Barge combo - but with both sides on one card. The political capital of being able to selectively give flying usually makes this earn it's slot alone. The (admittedly expensive) spot removal is just the icing on top.

Bruticus wrote:
This thread has been around before and it's tough because the format has been around for so long, many of the underrated cards have been found out.


Yeah, if I had been thinking I would have done a search before posting, so I did one now and updated the OP with links to the old threads I found.

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V/R

HK

Hazezon Tamar - Manland theme
Seshiro the Anointed - Snake Tribal
Jedit Ojanen of Efrava - Cat and Warrior Dual Tribal
Doran, the Seige Tower - Wall Tribal
Progenitus - Hydra themed Proliferate Deck
Karona, the False God - Backstabbing Hug


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 Post subject: Re: Underrated Cards in EDH
AgePosted: 2019-Jun-15 3:41 pm 
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Joined: 2011-Feb-07 3:37 pm
Age: Elder Dragon
Location: Danbury, CT
Treamayne wrote:
Bruticus wrote:
This thread has been around before and it's tough because the format has been around for so long, many of the underrated cards have been found out.


Yeah, if I had been thinking I would have done a search before posting, so I did one now and updated the OP with links to the old threads I found.


I had fun looking at the old lists. Some of the cards have become a bit dated (my old favs Thada Adel + Spreading Seas got a lot worse after the Commander tuck rule changed), some of them are still good, and some of them have been "discovered." ...anyone check the price of Argivian Archaeologist lately? Heh. Shoulda listened to MrCool back in 2013.

...

As for currently underrated cards, the A-list burn spells keep getting better as time goes on. Price of Progress and Acidic Soil are brutal. I still get a lot of mileage out of Molten Disastertoo.

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 Post subject: Re: Underrated Cards in EDH
AgePosted: 2019-Jun-15 6:05 pm 
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Joined: 2008-Mar-24 12:14 am
Age: Elder Dragon
Location: Oakland, CA
Treamayne wrote:
Bruticus wrote:
This thread has been around before and it's tough because the format has been around for so long, many of the underrated cards have been found out.


Yeah, if I had been thinking I would have done a search before posting, so I did one now and updated the OP with links to the old threads I found.

Here's more:
viewtopic.php?f=14&t=3589

viewtopic.php?f=14&t=11707

viewtopic.php?f=14&t=17465


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 Post subject: Re: Underrated Cards in EDH
AgePosted: 2019-Jun-15 9:51 pm 
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Joined: 2012-Nov-27 4:39 pm
Age: Elder Dragon
Location: Midgard
Kemev wrote:
...anyone check the price of Argivian Archaeologist lately? Heh. Shoulda listened to MrCool back in 2013.

:shock:
I'm honestly going to have to double check if I have any of these. Just in general I should start keeping better track of the prices for older cards I don't look at any longer.

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 Post subject: Re: Underrated Cards in EDH
AgePosted: 2019-Jun-15 11:02 pm 
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Joined: 2016-Nov-27 2:39 pm
Age: Elder Dragon
Treamayne wrote:
Extraplanar Lens, especially paired with Snow basics, can make a great lopsided mana doubler. Admittedly, this seems very popular in some metas, while others have never seen this hit the table before.

What's the synergy with snow basics there? I'm fairly sure it doesn't add snow mana, but that might not be the point of the pairing, so I'm uncertain what makes that pairing worth special focus.

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Beloved precons: Atraxa, Praetors' Voice; Saskia the Unyielding; Freyalise, Llanowar's Fury.


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 Post subject: Re: Underrated Cards in EDH
AgePosted: 2019-Jun-15 11:14 pm 

Joined: 2019-Jun-05 11:49 pm
Age: Drake
spacemonaut wrote:
Treamayne wrote:
Extraplanar Lens, especially paired with Snow basics, can make a great lopsided mana doubler. Admittedly, this seems very popular in some metas, while others have never seen this hit the table before.

What's the synergy with snow basics there? I'm fairly sure it doesn't add snow mana, but that might not be the point of the pairing, so I'm uncertain what makes that pairing worth special focus.


Two things:

1. It would not produce extra snow mana since the Extraplanar Lensis producing the extra mana and Extraplanar Lens is not a snow permanent.
2. The main benefit is that if you are the only one with snow lands in your deck, then you can make it so that you’re the only one who benefits from the effect of Extraplanar Lens


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 Post subject: Re: Underrated Cards in EDH
AgePosted: 2019-Jun-16 12:23 am 
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Joined: 2016-Nov-27 2:39 pm
Age: Elder Dragon
CowsCowsCows wrote:
spacemonaut wrote:
Treamayne wrote:
Extraplanar Lens, especially paired with Snow basics, can make a great lopsided mana doubler. Admittedly, this seems very popular in some metas, while others have never seen this hit the table before.

What's the synergy with snow basics there? I'm fairly sure it doesn't add snow mana, but that might not be the point of the pairing, so I'm uncertain what makes that pairing worth special focus.


Two things:

1. It would not produce extra snow mana since the Extraplanar Lensis producing the extra mana and Extraplanar Lens is not a snow permanent.
2. The main benefit is that if you are the only one with snow lands in your deck, then you can make it so that you’re the only one who benefits from the effect of Extraplanar Lens

Oooh, I get it now. That's clever. :)

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Beloved precons: Atraxa, Praetors' Voice; Saskia the Unyielding; Freyalise, Llanowar's Fury.


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 Post subject: Re: Underrated Cards in EDH
AgePosted: 2019-Jun-17 7:55 am 
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Joined: 2007-Mar-28 12:38 pm
Age: Elder Dragon
Location: Omaha
A few home-runs for the hyper-budget-conscious (I've been building decks at the $15 and $25 price points of late...)

Archfiend of Ifnir (46 cents): Cycling might just be the strongest budget-friendly ability ever. The Archfiend turns every Barren Moor, Windcaller Aven, and Shorline Ranger into a sliver of mass removal. It also flies, and is efficiently costed (both in mana and cents).

Retreat to Hagra (11 cents): On your turn, "deathtouch" is synonymous with "unblockable" 80% of the time. On opponents' turns (via Evolving Wilds/Terramorphic Expanse/Panoramas) it's a great way to trade up. And whenever the deathtouch isn't relevant, slow drain for the opponents and incidental lifegain for you is a pretty reasonable bonus for all of the lands you were going to play anyway.

Traitor's Clutch (7 cents)/Artful Dodge (21 cents): Counting to 21 is easier when you can't be blocked. Twice.

Jaya, Venerated Firemage (15 cents): Any deck that is hoping for the "Death of 1000 pings" (Judith, Pashalik Mons, Lyzolda, et. al.) becomes "Death of 500 pings" with this lady hanging around. If you're not actively going infinite with Purphoros, God of the Forge, Kyren Negotiations, Goblin Bombardment or similar strategies, Jaya can really tilt your math.

Vorrac Battlehorns(26 cents): I know this one has been discussed in other places, but if you want to go tall when your opponents go wide, this is one great way to negate the contribution of Saprolings #2-20.

Sigil of the New Dawn (13 cents): Recently reprinted in UMA (and rarity-shifted down to uncommon!), this gives another way for white decks (especially mono-white decks) to recoup a little card advantage. Great if you've got cheap creatures and extra mana.

Inheritance (21 cents): If you're playing Sigil, you can play this too. You can draw off opponents creature's dying as well.

Collective Unconscious (49 cents), Shamanic Revelation ($1.12): Green's "draw 7s."

Grim Flowering (9 cents): Opponents like to wrath before you can cast one of the above spells? No problem!

Customs Depot (11 cents), Military Intelligence (13 cents): Sure, they don't fit in most control decks, or heavy-spell-slinger decks, but if you're building a swarmy blue deck (maybe Edric fliers, or Kangee, or Yuriko, or Tetsuko Umezawa) these two enchantments can keep you in the gas for pennies apiece.

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Izoni, Thousand Eyed (Elf Tribal-ish)
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 Post subject: Re: Underrated Cards in EDH
AgePosted: 2019-Jun-17 8:16 am 
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Joined: 2008-Mar-24 12:14 am
Age: Elder Dragon
Location: Oakland, CA
Jeyal wrote:
Traitor's Clutch (7 cents)/Artful Dodge (21 cents): Counting to 21 is easier when you can't be blocked. Twice.

Distortion Strike and to a lesser extent Emerge Unscathed also fit in this role. The advantage of rebound is it means you aren't vulnerable to GY hate; the disadvantage is you MUST cast it the following upkeep, so if your Commander got removed between the first and second cast, you don't get to attack with it again unless you can somehow flash it in before your turn.


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 Post subject: Re: Underrated Cards in EDH
AgePosted: 2019-Jun-17 9:02 am 
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Joined: 2009-Nov-12 10:51 am
Age: Drake
Overwhelming Intellect is a card that is super sweet since you generally know when your opponents wanna cast their commanders - see that Proshh player getting ready for turn 6? Get rid of both their commander and draw 6. I've never failed to cast this when I held mana up for it and not at least net 4 cards. Which is anecdotal evidence sure, but still, if players have high cost commanders or are looking to recast theirs you should always have a target.

Psychic Possession and Bedlam are two cards I've only seen myself play but are both incredibly powerful - but maybe this is just a lack of diversity within my playgroups.

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