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Sunday, May 28, 2017

Conspiracy Take the Crown – The Third Power

November 2, 2016 by  
Filed under Commander/General Ideas, Review

Sovereigns Realm

Age of Marchesa.

Amidst the political war between the new Queen Marchesa’s force and the newly forming republic party of the ex-guard captain Adriana with the King’s old friend Selvala as the figure head, there is a third party force working behind the scene; secretly gathering and selling intel to the right people for the right price. For all fighting for power in Paliano, they know that information is key and vital to winning the political war. Today article will be about this figure who is building his reputation and making presence known to the people of Paliano.

 

Council’s Dilemma

Getting the favor of the people is important to winning the political war. No one can gain an upper hand if the people keep on going against you. This is very much reflected in multi-player play in EDH. If everyone go against you with your every play, you will not survive long till the end. Back then during Conspiracy set, we were introduced to Will of the Council, a very multi-player orientated mechanic which allows players to vote between two effects on the card to determine the outcome of the ability. The effect with the majority vote will then be chosen. As a recap, below are the cards with Will of the Council in the first set.

Bite of the Black Rose Vote for Sickness or Psychosis. Then Creatures your opponents control get -2/-2 till end of turn if Sickness gets more votes; or each opponent discards two cards if Psychosis gets more votes or the vote is tied.
Coercive Portal Vote for Carnage or Homage at your upkeep. Then sacrifice the Portal and destroy all nonLand permanents if Carnage gets more votes; or draw a card if Homage gets more votes or the vote is tied.
Council’s Judgment Vote for a nonLand permanent you don’t control. Then exile each permanent with the most votes or tied for most votes.
Custodi Squire ETB vote for an Artifact, Creature, or Enchantment card in your graveyard. Return each card with the most votes or tied for most votes.
Magister of Worth ETB vote for Grace or Condemnation. Then each player returns each Creature from their graveyards to the battlefield if Grace gets more votes; or destroy all other Creatures if Condemnation gets more votes or the vote is tied.
Plea for Power Vote for Time or Knowledge. Then take an extra turn if Time gets more votes; or draw three cards if Knowledge gets more votes or the vote is tied.
Split Decision Choose target Instant or Sorcery, then vote for Denial or Duplication. Then counter that spell if Denial gets more votes; or copy that spell if Duplication gets more votes or the vote is tied.
Tyrant’s Choice Vote for Death or Torture. Then each opponent sacrifices a Creature if Death gets more votes; or loses 4 life if Torture gets more votes or the vote is tied.

 

Plea for Power

Vote wisely.

 

Coming to the sequel of the Conspiracy set, we will introduce to a little tweaked on the Will of the Council ability. The new Council’s Dilemma ability is similar to the old Will of the Council but with a twist on the overall effect stage of the ability. Instead of the majority vote being the overall effect, now every vote will add to the overall effect. This is even more political than the previous Will of the Council where everyone can vote to lessen the effect of the spell to the minimum. For Council’s Dilemma, you will have to talk more to get your way to the other players to let you gain more out of the ability; or to put in simple terms gain more of the desired effect you want out of the ability. Many of times when one of this Council’s Dilemma cards are played in our Play Group, there will be open discussions as to how best to utilize the ability can help everyone. In a way, Council’s Dilemma cards are very much the people’s choice cards which let the players who are lagging gang up to deal with public enemy. Below are all the cards related to Council’s Dilemma in the set.

Capital Punishment Vote for Death or Taxes, then each opponent sacrifices a Creature for each Death vote and discards a card for each Taxes vote. Let everyone deal with the player who is too ahead of the others in terms of Creatures or hand.
Expropriate Vote for Time or Money, then take an extra turn for each Time vote and choose a permanent owned by the voter and gain control of it for each Money vote. Exile after use. A win more card as either choice is huge boost to the caster.
Lieutenants of the Guard ETB vote for Strength or Numbers, then put a +1/+1 counter on it for each Strength vote and create a 1/1 White Soldier token for each Numbers vote. Let everyone decides whether you get one big body or many small bodies.
Messenger Jays ETB vote for Feather or Quill, then put a +1/+1 counter on it for each Feather vote and draw a card for each Quill vote. Let everyone decides whether you get one big Flying body or just draw a tons of cards.
Orchard Elemental ETB vote for Sprout or Harvest, then put two +1/+1 counters on it for each Sprout vote and gain 3 life for each Harvest vote. Let everyone decides whether you get one big body or gain some life to stay in the game.
Selvala’s Stampede Vote for Wild or Free, then for each Wild vote reveal cards from the top of your library until you reveal a Creature card, put that Creatures card onto the battlefield, then shuffle the rest into your library; and for each Free vote you may put a permanent card from your hand onto the battlefield. A huge boost to with either choice in Creature heavy decks.

 

Expropriate

The dilemma of to gain more or gain a lot more.

 

“Information is the Key to Winning”

Entourage of Trest

The People of Trest.

We now know that on Paliano, no one can live for long alone without allies in the right places in the High City’s political system. Today featured Commander knows this best and had done all he could to be in the system since he came into the High City. Coming from the port city state of Trest on the plane of Fiora, the elven ambassador Leovold is using all his resources to gain a footing in the society. He was posted only recently to the High City of Paliano and he had begun making his presence known in the city by hosting elaborate parties, banquets, and other display with the express intent of “cultural exchange”. He is known for his grand gestures and bold proclamations of friendship. All seems well except that all his actions are actually to secretly gather intelligence on all noble citizens. When given the right price, he will then be more than willing to exchange what he has collected with the right people. This information collecting is not uncommon for the Elves of Trest as Edric, another famous Elf from the port city is also known for his capabilities to collect information and selling them for a right price. Brief history of the information dealers aside, let’s have a look at today featured Commander’s stats before we move on.

Leovold Emissary of Trest

Card Name: Leovold, Emissary of Trest

CMC: BGU

Types: Legendary Creature – Elf Advisor

Card Text: Each opponent can’t draw more than one card each turn.

Whenever you or a permanent you control becomes the target of a spell or ability an opponent controls, you may draw a card.

P/T: 3/3

Information collecting is the game play of Leovold which he showcased that with his two abilities perfectly. Preventing opponents from drawing more than one card per turn is powerful especially since card advantage is very important in all MtG games. This is like Leovold denying information to his enemies and telling the high nobles in Paliano that not even being a Monarch can keep you ahead as he will stop that Monarch draw too. And if your opponents try to challenge you for the card advantage that you denied them from having, Leovold also turn that into an advantage and lets you draw cards whenever your opponents target you or your permanents; an ability which originated from Rayne, Academy Chancellor. Leovold reminds me a little bit of Jin-Gitaxias, Core Augur. Both denied opponents’ card advantage while boosting their controllers’ card advantage through their different methods. It is also notable that Leovold is of Sultai color identity, a color combination which is well known for its cunning nature giving you access to ramp, control, and removal.

Emissary's Ploy

“Trust me. It’s all part of a cultural exchange,”

 

One Sided Advantage

A lot of card drawing advantages in MtG are symmetrical. This means that many times a card gives you an advantage for a low cost, it will also give it to your opponents. Thus in EDH, these cards actually help you to stay alive politically in the game since you are providing benefits to everyone. Leovold void that symmetry for card advantage from these cards as he stops opponents’ card drawing beyond one for each turn while you still enjoy the advantage provided by those cards. If you like to break the card advantage symmetry, then you may consider to use the cards below.

Anvil of Bogardan Gives additional card draw at each player’s draw step but requires the player to discards a card. Combo with Leovold and there is no additional card draw for opponents and they have to discard a card during their draw step.
Arcane Denial Becomes a cantrip Counterspell as opponent whose spell is countered by it cannot draw more than one card during his or her turn with Leovold on the battlefield.
Dark Deal Only you discard your hand and draw that many cards minus one. Opponents discard their hand and draw nothing since they can only draw one card per turn (one minus one equals zero).
Day’s Undoing / Diminishing Returns / Temporal Cascade / Time Reversal / Time Spiral / Timetwister Reset cards which only resets you if Leovold is on the battlefield. Opponents will only shuffle their graveyard into their library and draw one card if they have not draw a card for the turn.
Dictate of Kruphix / Font of Mythos / Howling Mine / Kami of the Crescent Moon / Otherworld Atlas / Rites of Flourishing / Temple Bell / Well of Ideas Cards which becomes only let you draw additional cards when combo with Leovold.
Fascination / Flux / Minds Aglow / Nature’s Resurgence / Prosperity / Skyscribing Changes into Braingeyser or Stroke of Genius when combo with Leovold.
Geier Reach Sanitarium / Mikokoro, Center of the Sea Isolate one opponent and activate the Lands on that opponent’s turn; except for you everyone else except that opponent get to draw a card if they have not drawn a card for the turn when combo with Leovold.
Jace’s Archivist / Whispering Madness / Windfall Each player discards their hand and then you draw cards equal to the greatest number of cards a player discarded this way when combo with Leovold. Opponents only draw one card if they have not drawn a card for the turn.
Seizan, Perverter of Truth Opponents draw only one card and lose 2 life at their upkeep when combo with Leovold.
Selvala’s Charge / Selvala’s Enforcer Parley cards which give you all the advantage but deny the card advantage to opponents who had already draw a card for the turn when combo with Leovold.
Teferi’s Puzzle Box Totally destroy the opponents’ hands when combo with Leovold.

 

Dark Deal

Gaining favors from the Dark side.

 

Leovold also provides a lot of card advantage for his second ability. Sometimes so much so that you might exceed your maximum hand size very quickly. So to prevent that from happening, you might want to include the below cards to keep the cards in your hand.

Blue Enter the Infinite / Graceful Adept / Tamiyo, the Moon Sage
Black Price of Knowledge
Green Praetor’s Counsel
Others Kruphix, God of Horizons
Colorless Anvil of Bogardan / Library of Leng / Reliquary Tower / Spellbook / Thought Vessel / Venser’s Journal

 

Price of Knowledge Full Art

Knowing All and Too Much.

 

With the huge amount of cards that can be draw and kept that way, you may also consider the below Creatures as your beatdown Creatures to finish your opponents with. Each of these cards have power and toughness equal to the number of cards in your hand thus they become quite big with the amount of cards you can draw from Leovold ability.

Aeon Chronicler Suspend to draw more cards as you remove time counters from it.
Kagemaro, First to Suffer Beatdown Creature which can be used as a board sweep.
Maro The very first infamous Creature with power and toughness each equal to the number of cards in your hand.
Masumaro, First to Live Double Maro.
Multani, Maro-Sorcerer Ultimate Maro. Self-protection with Shroud. Can grow to colossal size in Multi-player games.
Overbeing of Myth Gives an additional card draw at draw step to further boost your hand size.
Psychosis Crawler Double as kill con with Leovold. Draws a card when you or your permanents are targeted when Leovold is on the battlefield; each opponent loses 1 life when you draw a card. No attack needed.
Sage of Ancient Lore // Werewolf of Ancient Hunger ETB draw a card. Transform into “Multani” with Vigilance and Trample.
Soramaro, First to Dream Flying. Comes with pump up for the power and toughness equal to hand army with its returning a Land to draw a card ability.
Sturmgeist Provide card draw when it deals combat damage to a player.

 

Overbeing of Myth

“Your Mind is my Body.”

 

However if you rather not use the “keep your hand” way to Leovold card advantage, then you may consider another group of Creatures whose power and toughness depend on the graveyard instead since you might discard a lot due to the overwhelming card advantage.

Boneyard Wurm Low cc Creature with power and toughness equal to Creature cards in your graveyard.
Cognivore Flying. Power and toughness equal to Instants in all graveyards.
Consuming Aberration Power and toughness equal to opponents’ graveyards size. Comes with milling of opponents’ library to increase its size.
Lhurgoyf / Mortivore Power and toughness depend on all Creature cards in all graveyards.
Lord of Extinction Power and toughness equal to all graveyards size.
Revenant Power and toughness equal to Creature cards in your graveyard.
Soulless One Power and toughness equal to Zombies on battlefield and Zombie cards in all graveyards.
Splinterfright Power and toughness equal to Creature cards in your graveyard. Self mill two cards at upkeep.
Svogthos, the Restless Tomb Land which becomes Creature with power and toughness equal to Creature cards in your graveyard.
Terravore Power and toughness equal to Land cards in all graveyard
Umbra Stalker Chroma – Power and toughness equal to Black mana symbols in mana costs of cards in your graveyard.

 

Lord of Extinction

Death cometh to all.

 

Underhand Tactic

“Come Come. Have a seat. I’m sure we can come to a satisfying agreement.”

Overall Leovold is very competitive Commander to build around. His Sultai color identity provides good control through all the colors with countering powers, removals, disruptions and all. His abilities also factor in for him to be a good choice as a Commander. Although he lacks any protection by himself, he does has a low cc which allows him to be recast at least a couple of times from the Command Zone. And even if the Commander tax becomes too high, you have the option of using reanimation or recur him from the graveyard with the colors in his color identity. Last but not least, it cannot be stress enough how important card advantage is in MtG. Leovold is brutal in this aspect as he denies card advantages to opponents and grant you huge card advantage through his ability which draw you when you or your permanents are targeted by opponents’ spells and abilities. If you are looking for a strong Commander in Sultai, Leovold is a top candidate to consider but be warned that he can be quite over power and be prepare for the retaliation you will get from your opponents.

 

What do you think of the Elven emissary? Would you use him as your Commander or just a support Creature to your Sultai deck? Share with us your thoughts in the comments below. With that we shall end it for emissary of Trest. Do stay tune for more Commander review for the Conspiracy – Take the Crown set.

 

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

:D~

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