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Wednesday, May 24, 2017

Set Review Commander 2014 – Feldon of the Third Path

July 24, 2015 by  
Filed under Commander/General Ideas, Review

The Commander 2014 set had for some reasons chosen Artifact to be heavily associated with Red despite its active role in destroying them. The Commander for today article was a historical figure in Magic history. One who appeared and was active during the iconic Brothers War. His name was first mentioned and made known to us through his cane, an Artifact which can reshuffle the graveyard to the library. That Commander is none other than Feldon of the Third Path.

Feldon's Cane

Looking at the Man behind the Cane

 

Let it Go

Before we proceed on, let us see a bit of backstory of the man. For the early part of Feldon’s history, he lived and grew up at the foot of the Ronom Glacier on Terisiare, a place which would later become the setting of the set Cold Snap. It was there during the Brothers’ War that he became an archaeologist and retrieved many items such his cane and the Golgothian Sylex, the later which would be instrumental in ending the war and setting the plane to go into an Ice Age.

Brothers War

Brothers by Birth, Enemies by Circumstances

 

When the war intensified, Feldon joined a group of people who called themselves the Third Path. These people had decided not to be involved with either of the Brothers and were researching ways to defeat or at least withstand the Brothers. It was here Feldon met and married his wife, Loran. But good times did not last for them as the Brotherhood of Gix betrayed the group to Mishra. The group’s center was attacked and destroyed. Although many of the members including Feldon were able to escape with the help of Hurkyl, Loran was separated from Feldon while escaping and captured by Ashnod, Mishra’s force second in command. Loran was tortured for the secrets of the Artifacts raided from the center, particularly the Sylex.

Hurkyl's Recall

The Bane of Artifact

 

Loran was able to escape but the secret of the Sylex was already known. Feldon and Loran managed to reunite and live together happily for a brief period but that ended after the Ice Age brought about by the Sylex Blast. The cooling climate combined with the injuries she sustained from Ashnod’s torture claimed her life. Feldon was mad with grief and created an automation in hope of replacing her; though he soon came to realize that it was not really her and removed its powerstone and placed the automation by his wife’s grave as a statue.

What follow next was Feldon’s journey to discover ways to being his wife back. Being a practitioner of the Third Path, he was convinced that magic could bring back his wife but possessing only Red magic at that moment he started travelling the lands to find someone who could help him. He found a “Hedge Wizard”, a crazy hermit, to learn his Green magic but was told by the hermit that his magic only influence the living and not the dead. Next he was directed to a Sorceress with Blue magic but was again disappointed to find out that the magic only creates illusions of his wife and not truly bringing her back to life.

The Sorceress directed Feldon to a Black mage who asked for Feldon’s cane in exchange for teaching him the spell to bring his wife back to life. In reality the spell only create a zombified version of her. This disgusted Feldon and he had unsummoned it before he could lay eyes on it. By then the Black mage was already nowhere to be found.

Zombie Token

Back in the Wrong Way

The last mage that Feldon visited on his journey was a White Scholar. He taught Feldon that magic could only summon magical copies of people and not bring them back to life. Using this knowledge, Feldon created a copy of Loran from his memory and after said his good bye to it let it go. This gesture allowed Feldon to get over his grief and he was able to live out his days in happiness. As a promise to the White Scholar, Feldon begin to share his knowledge gained from the journey allowing people to learn from his library and himself. Through this he would go on to become one of the important people in the early days of magical research.

 

Below are the stats of the great man himself.

Feldon of the Third Path

Card Name: Feldon of the Third Path

CMC: 1RR

Types: Legendary Creature – Human Artificer

Card Text: 2R, T: Put a token onto the battlefield that’s a copy of target creature card in your graveyard, except it’s an artifact in addition to its other types. It gains haste. Sacrifice it at the beginning of the next end step.

P/T: 2/3

Kiki-Jiki Mirror Breaker

“Same Same But Different, ya know what I’m saying?”

Feldon’s design is very top down of the version of him when Loran just died when he was still much afflicted to Red and creating the automation in his wife’s image. Feldon reminds me a lot of Kiki-Jiki, Mirror Breaker. Both create temporary token copies of Creatures which are sacrifice at the end step. The difference here is Feldon look at your graveyard for target to create token giving him a reanimation sort of ability. He is also a bit better than Kiki-Jiki in that he can create token of Legendary Creatures. Maybe created as a way to prevent shenanigans like Kiki-Jiki’s infinite token generation, Feldon’s ability comes with mana to activate too, making it requiring some work before you can achieve an infinite token generation similar to Kiki-Jiki. The best part of the ability is that the “reanimated” token will die and not be exile like recent temporary reanimation abilities and spells where the reanimated Creature will be exile once they leave the battlefield. This allows several LTB which require the Creatures to die to trigger. Also following his storyline, the token is also an Artifact like the automation created in his wife image. This additional ability allows other interaction for the token with Artifact related stuff; for example acting as a sacrifice target for Daretti, Scrap Savant; Goblin Welder; Trash for Treasure. For that, Feldon has some potential in normal variant too, taking up a role as a reanimator source in reanimator decks.

 

Rise of the Machine

Exhume

Rebirth By Force

Feldon plays rather well as a Commander given his low cc. This allows him to be easily summoned again and again from the Command Zone if needed. Either way you play him, the strategy to use him is pretty much the same. Dump Creatures into the graveyard and “reanimate” copies of them. But what kind of Creatures to reanimate you may ask. Since the token is only temporary and will self sacrifice at the end step, Creature with ETB or LTB triggers are the best choices. Not only do you get a temporary attacker or blocker, you also gain the benefits from them entering and leaving the battlefield all at the same time. This is especially so as the token self sacrifice at the end step helping to trigger the LTB trigger as it dies. Add Grave Pact to the mix and you can easily wipe your opponents’ board of Creatures too. Below are some examples of Creatures that can be use in regard to the ability.

Absolver Thrull / Belfry Spirit / Blind Hunter / Exhumer Thrull / Graven Dominator / Orzhov Euthanist / Orzhov Pontiff

These Creatures usually exile themselves when they died to haunt other Creature due to their Haunt ability. They need to be discarded so Feldon can create token copy of them. Haunt will then trigger at the end step when the token sacrifice itself at the end step. Combination is possible when using Feldon as a common Creature due to the colors of the Haunt Creatures.

Academy Rector

Enchantment tutor with each Feldon activation.

Abyssal Gatekeeper / Akki Blizzard-Herder / Deathcurse Ogre / Hurloon Shaman / Mindslicer / Noble Benefactor / Runed Servitor / Sadistic Augermage / Veteran Explorer

Creatures which have a LTB trigger on all players when they die.

Archon of Justice / Ashen Rider

Exiles a permanent with each Feldon activation on Archon of Justice. Double the fun with Ashen Rider due to its ETB trigger.

Aura Thief

Steal all Enchantments with a Feldon activation. Activate again when there are new Enchantments.

Blistergrub / Butcher of Malakir / Kokusho, the Evening Star / Noxious Toad / Screeching Buzzard / Vengeful Dead

Creatures which have a LTB trigger on all opponents when they die.

Celestial Gatekeeper / Karmic Guide / Phyrexian Delver

Creatures with ETB or LTB to reanimate Creatures. The Guide and Delver are ETB triggers but the Gatekeeper is a LTB trigger. Gatekeeper also requires it to be discarded, due to its die trigger of exiling itself, in order to be combo with Feldon.

Chimney Imp

A soft lock on one opponent for each Feldon activation.

Disciple of the Vault

Combo is possible due to the Artifact property given to the tokens by Feldon.

Goblin Marshal / Siege-Gang Commander / Mogg War Marshal

Goblins which creates Goblin tokens as they ETB or LTB. Rinse and repeat with Feldon activation to create an army of Goblin tokens.

Hunting Moa

Pumps up up to two Creatures with each Feldon activation; once for ETB and once for LTB. Rinse and repeat for bigger Creatures.

Mitotic Slime

The slime token with each Feldon activation will replace itself into an army of self replacing slimes.

Penumbra Creatures

These Creatures creates copies of themselves when they died; effectively replacing themselves as Feldon makes copies of them.

Roc Egg / Rukh Egg

Creates an army of Birds over time.

Self-sacrifice Creatures

Any Creature with its own sacrifice ability can combo with Feldon activation for repeated use.

Symbiotic Creatures

Creatures which replace themselves with army of Insects with each Feldon activation. Rinse and repeat to overrun opponents with Insect tokens.

Wurmcoil Engine

Create Wurmcoil token to attack; get 3/3 Deathtouch Wurm token and 3/3 Lifelink Wurm token at end step; rinse and repeat. Probably the best out of the tokens creating combo here.

 

Wurmcoil Engine

Two in One Package

 

Working Under

Even though Feldon is an Artificer to begin with, his ability is very in line with Reanimator. As such he serves quite well as one of the means of reanimation in such decks. Conveniently enough, there are a couple of Reanimator style Commanders who happen to have Red in their color identity. Below are some recommended Commanders which fits the bill.

  • Adun Oakenshield:- Gives access to other colors like Black and Green. Also provides a backtrack by returning Creatures to your hand if needed.

Adun Oakenshield

  • Kresh the Bloodbraided:- Kresh was the leading figure on the Jund shards of Alara. The featured mechanic of that shard was Devour, a ETB trigger which lets you sacrifice any number of Creatures to let the controller of the Creature with Devour gets a number of +1/+1 counters on it. Kresh capitalize on that by gaining +1/+1 counters equal to the power of Creature that died regardless of which side. The tokens created by Feldon self sacrifice at the end step and let Kresh become immerse in no time. Present in Kresh color identity is also Green which has many Creatures which are good targets for Feldon (see above table) too.

Kresh the Bloodbraided

  • Sedris, the Traitor King:- Feldon requires a big graveyard in order to utilize his ability well. Sedris serves as a backup plan with his Unearth granting ability should Feldon is not present to do the deed.

Sedris, the Traitor King

 

Conclusion

Feldon of the Third Path

“The Path may not always be short but we get there somehow.”

In my opinion, I think that Feldon is more suited to be as a support Creature rather than a Commander. The reason being there are simply much more options of Creatures for him to make out of Red. Regardless of as a Commander or support Creature his role in the deck is still the same; to get a use out of the Creatures in your graveyard, so why not maximize his usefulness then and expand instead of sticking in Red for the list of Creatures in your graveyard. As talked about earlier, I see Feldon as more of a permanent repeatable means of reanimation in Reanimator style decks.

 

So what do you think of the master Artificer who was looking for ways to let it go? Would you prefer him to be the Commander or a common Creature in your deck? Share with us what you think in the comments below. With all that said, we shall end it here for today article. Hope you had enjoyed today article and see you in next article for Commanders from Commander 2014.

 

This is yours truly, Edward “Reaper King” Leong, signing off.

:D~

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