I’ve always been a big fan of limited Magic: The Gathering. Pre-releases especially interest me because cards are fresh and new interactions are there for everyone to explore and find out. After I came across the spoiler earlier this week for Fate Reforged, the latest expansion, I decided to do my usual homework on the commons and uncommons of the set and share my findings. If you were to draft three packs of Fate Reforged or open six Fate Reforged in a sealed event, here are my thoughts on what are some of the greatest cards. Reporting for South Florida Magic, here are my top ten Fate Reforged commons… in a vacuum.
Top 10 Limited Commons From Fate Reforged Video
This set is all about the arms race and trying to control the board state with lots of creatures and combat tricks. The two cards that seemed like a lot of fun, but didn’t quite make the list are:
Honorable Mentions – Lotus Path Djinn & Jeskai Sage: At its casting cost, Lotus Path Djinn is very decent for the flying and the 2/3 body alone. The Prowess keyword ability and holding any number of cards in your hand with mana untapped becomes a tricky position for your opponents to be in. Let’s say you attack with the Djinn and leave a big opening for their 3/3 creature to attack on the next turn. They might think you have a Refocus in hand, or perhaps you actually do and your opponent doesn’t think to play around it. There are just so many cards in this set that make Lotus Path Djinn a mob boss in the sky. I found the Jeskai Sage to be a weaker version of this creature with a distinct set of mind games.
Top 10 Fate Reforged Commons
#10 – Goblin Heelcutter: This guy and a removal spell, or holding two of him for a late play can be devastating in a long stalemated game. Also, his dash ability is great in a long game against sorcery speed removal.
#9 – Frontier Mastodon: The chance to have a 4/3 in a sea of manifested 2/2’s is very decent. Good for pressure and tempo, this creature fills out the curve nicely and just might take out a team of blockers.
#8 – Formless Nurturing: A definite 3/3 for 4 mana is decent in this format considering Frontier Mastodon. The chance the manifested card might flip to become a bigger creature makes attacking with an actual good creature or just a bluffed card a challenging mind game for your opponent.
#7 – Fierce Invocation: This card is the same concept as Formless Nurturing, but ups the ante. This card being more mana to cast, makes it a later game play which might actually be better when you are late game trying to draw into your bomb creature.
#6 – Feral Krushok: A hard hitting dependable creature that probably needs to be double blocked. It works good with manifest and hits that ferocious trigger. A solid pick.
#5 – Reach of Shadows: Nice, solid instant speed removal. The restriction of the target needing to be colorless is not a deal breaker in this set. With the keyword ‘Prowess’, any instant effect is an earlier pick in a draft than normal.
#4 – Hooded Assassin: Probably a bigger hit at pre-releases than down the road–Hooded Assassin kills 2/2’s or chomps on damaged creatures.
#3 – Write into Being: An all around great utility card that gives you a manifested creature. The increased chance to manifest into a creature card while fixing your deck helps to make sure you aren’t missing the drops you want.
#2 – Dragon Bell Monk: Coupled with a few timely control spells, this guy is brutal. Buff him, manifest something, fetch a land, remove a permanent, react with a spell–it all makes this guy bigger. White/Blue Prowess might be a big thing at this pre-release. If you are on the receiving end, my apologies.
#1 – Ethereal Ambush: Down by 10 near the end of what could be your last turn? This card can be your last minute bases loaded grand slam… or not. Two 2/2’s at instant speed are great. This might put that late game answer you need directly into play, or it might just put you over the top to win in a locked up board state. Imagine playing this and holding or running into a Goblin Heelcutter.