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Saturday, July 14, 2018

Commander Review: Fate Reforged – Temur of the Past

November 30, 2016 by  
Filed under Commander/General Ideas, Review

Surrak Dragonclaw

Fighting in Another Time.

Welcome back fellow EDH-ers as we review the last clan of Tarkir past for our Fate Reforged Commander review. Today featured clan of the past is the Temur Frontier. The shamanistic people of this clan living in the high mountains of Tarkir are even stronger survivors of their harsh artic environments in the past than they are in the present; some even able to bring down a Dragon in a solo battle. Their clan mechanic is still Ferocious, the same as present. Interestingly in a cruel twist of fate, the khan of Temur past was instrumental to the development of the plane’s history.


Crux of Fate

In the original timeline, Yasova Dragonclaw the khan of Termur past was the one who led Nicol Bolas to kill Ugin. She was showed false visions of Tarkir’s Dragon-free future where her clan would rule supreme. Already furious and frustrated at the Dragons’ constant frontier siege and the suffering of her people, she was more than willing to accept the prospect of the Dragons becoming extinct. She followed Bolas instructions to chart the storms that spawned the Dragons; tracking them and leaving a trail so that he could kill Ugin and help her ensure the extinction of Tarkir’s Dragons. Things went on as planned and Bolas was guided by Yosava to Tarkir. Upon locating Ugin, they battled and Bolas succeeded in killing the Spirit Dragon thus ending the Dragonstorm and bringing the age of the clans upon Tarkir.

Crux of Fate

Historical Mistake.


It was at this turning point of history that Sarkhan arrived in the past through the Ugin’s Nexus and met Yasova while she was tracking the Dragonstorm. She was the first Human that he met in the past. Yasova considered Sarkhan a madman and someone with no shame or respect as his name “Sar” meaning Great/High/Sky and used to imply that he claimed himself to be higher than all on Tarkir. Also partly due to his guilt of Narset having sacrificed herself to let Sarkhan to go back in time, Sarkhan was quick in prostrating himself and his subservience also disgusted Yasova. She was however proven wrong when she was shown by Sarkhan the visions of Tarkir real fate after the Dragons’ extinction; where the Lands are contaminated by the Dragons’ corpse with the Temur not ruling over the clans and instead at war fighting for dominance over Tarkir. They both realized too late of Bolas’s real plot to kill Ugin as he set it into motion. When the battle between Bolas and Ugin ensued, Sarkhan transformed into his Dragon form and flew off in hopes of saving Ugin; leaving Yasova stunned at the sight and in deep regret of what she had helped Bolas to accomplish. Bolas was successful in mortally wounding Ugin and after getting the information he wanted from Ugin’s mind, he left Ugin to his death at the site which will eventually be known as the Tomb of the Spirit Dragon where the Ugin’s Nexus will be at. Although Bolas succeeded in his schemes and got what he wanted, Sarkhan also succeeded in changing history at this point as he activated a hedron he had taken from the Eye of Ugin on Zendikar and formed the Crucible of the Spirit Dragon where Ugin would heal over the years and be saved. Sarkhan was then thrusted back to the present leaving Yasova to muse about her meeting with the Dragon man from the skys.

Crucible of the Spirit Dragon

The Beginning of Another Tyrant Age.


With Ugin saved by Sarkhan, the Dragonstorm began to intensify. Yasova attended the meeting of the khans and told the rest of the khans her encounter with Sarkhan and her involvement in what might had caused them to be in the state they are in now. Furious at first for her involvement of causing their current state, they soon realized their immediate danger as Ojutai and Silumgar attacked. Saved from the Khanfall by the sacrifice of Reyhan the “True” Abzan khan, Yasova returned to her people and for the sake of her people surrendered to Atarka, the Dragon leader of the Dragons which are attacking the Temur region. Yasova offered Atarka with a Mammoth carcass to satiate her hunger and promised to feed her and her brood in return the Dragons shall spare the lives of the Termur. With the deal made, the Temur will from then on hunt to feed the Dragons for their survival. Unlike the other khans who disbanded their clans, Yasova appears to have been able to retain much of the Temur’s identity. Overtime though, fearful of the elementalism wielded by the Temur, Atarka and her Dragons will eventually initiated a purge to outlaw the “Dragonclaw” so as to eliminate any chance of retaliation the Temur will have and forming the Atarka clan.

Dragonlord's Servant

Feed to Live Another Day.


Before we move on further, let’s have a look at the stats of the past Temur khan


 Yasova Dragonclaw

Card Name: Yasova Dragonclaw


Types: Legendary Creature – Human Warrior

Card Text: Trample

At the beginning of combat on your turn, you may pay 1 U/R U/R. If you do, gain control of target creature an opponent controls with power less than Yasova Dragonclaw’s power until end of turn, untap that creature, and it gains haste until end of turn.

P/T: 4/2

Following the footsteps of all the other Tarkir past khans, Yasova is also a mono Green in casting but Temur (Green, Red, Blue) color identity through her ability. I like her flavorful combat trigger ability of controlling opponent’s Creature with power lesser than her. The ability which requires hybrid Blue and Red mana to use makes it look like as if she is subduing the Creature with her power. The control ability is also off to a good start with her power at 4, allowing you to be able to capture most Creatures. Even when there are Creatures with power higher than Yasova, you can easily pump her up to match the Creature. Even without the ability, Yasova is still quite an efficient Creature for having 4 power at just 3cc, with Trample too which we had once also consider in normal variant decks as a beatdown Creature. At her power of 4 Yasova also dutifully fulfill her duty as the Temur khan easily triggering the clan mechanic, Ferocious.


Sacrificial Lamb

Shivan Harvest

“Your sacrifice is necessary. Trust Me.”

Yasovas’ temporary control ability is along the line of Red of spells which temporary steal Creatures to your side. The effect also appears in Blue (Ray of Command) but is seen lately more in Red. Generally temporary gaining control of your opponents’ Creatures and using them to beat your opponents can be quite a fun thing to do; one moment they are triumphant about having the biggest, meanest, coolest Creature on the board and the next you are beating them with it. The fun however should not just end there. If the Creature is a problem; just temporary controlling it and beating the owner with it is not going to solve the problem as it still goes back to its owner’s side after that to continue to cause problem to you. In this regard, I will recommend the below cards which you may consider to combo with Yasova to totally get rid of the Creature permanently. The below ways allow you to not just attack with them but also to make full use of the Creatures for several other things as you temporary gained control of them.

Altar of Dementia Sacrifices the controlled Creature to mill the owner.
Ashnod’s Altar / Phyrexian Altar / Thermopod Sacrifices the controlled Creature for mana.
Barrage of Expendables / Blasting Station / Blood Rites / Bloodshot Cyclops / Doom Cannon / Fiery Bombardment / Fodder Cannon / Goblin Bombardment / Magmaw / Skull Catapult Sacrifices the controlled Creature to deal damage to a target.
Barrin, Master Wizard Sacrifices the controlled Creature to bounce target Creature.
Birthing Pod Sacrifices the controlled Creature to tutor for Creature card with cc equal to 1 plus the sacrificed Creature’s cc onto the battlefield.
Bubbling Cauldron / High Market / Miren, the Moaning Well Sacrifices the controlled Creature to gain life.
Carnage Altar / Greater Good / Phyrexian Vault Sacrifices the controlled Creature to draw card(s).
Demonmail Hauberk / Grafted Exoskeleton / Grafted Wargear / Stitcher’s Graft / Thirsting Axe Equipment that sacrifices Creatures using them.
Devour Creatures Sacrifices the controlled Creature to feed Devour Creatures
Eldritch Evolution Sacrifices the controlled Creature to tutor for Creature card with X cc or less onto the battlefield, where X is 2 plus the sacrificed Creature’s cc.
Elvish Skysweeper Sacrifices the controlled Creature to destroy target Flying Creature.
Emrakul’s Evangel Sacrifices the controlled Creature along with the Evangel to create Eldrazi Horror tokens.
Exploit Creatures Sacrifices the controlled Creature to Exploit it.
Evolutionary Leap Sacrifices the controlled Creature to reveal cards from your library top until you reveal a Creature card. Put that card into hand and the rest randomly on the bottom of library.
Feed the Pack Sacrifices the controlled Creature at end of turn to create Wolf tokens.
Greater Gargadon The near uncounterable sacrificial outlet.
Helm of Possession Sacrifices the controlled Creature to gain control another Creature.
Jalira, Master Polymorphist Sacrifices the controlled Creature to polymorph for nonlegendary Creature.
Jinxed Idol / Jinxed Ring Sacrifices the controlled Creature to pass the Jinxed Artifacts to opponent.
Perilous Forays Sacrifices the controlled Creature to tutor for basic Land onto battlefield.
Shivan Harvest Sacrifices the controlled Creature to destroy nonbasic Land.
Trading Post Sacrifices the controlled Creature to retrieve your Artifact.


Feed the Pack

Pack Buffet.


If you like to keep the Creature permanently though, you may consider to use Bazaar Trader and Nephalia Smuggler. The Trader has a unique ability of donating your things to target player. You can use it to donate the controlled Creature to yourself and it will stay on your side after that. Smuggler does the same thing but blink the Creature instead. However the Creature comes back under your control after being blinked. Thus if you blink the controlled Creature with the Smuggler it will stay under your control permanently. Other similar effect to Smuggler are Conjurer’s Closet; & Ghostly Flicker. Last but not least, if you like Yasova ability to happen more, you may consider using card to gain more combat phase. Aggravated Assault + Nature’s Will allow you to steal all you can of an opponent Creatures; the Assault provides the extra combat phase for Yasova and the Will gives you the mana needed to triggered Yasova and Assault. Alternately Bear Umbra also does the same job. You can put it on Yasova to boost her power so she can steal bigger Creatures; additionally Totem Armor also protects her. If you do not like to go through too many cards to get the trigger out of Yasova, then Strionic Resonator does the job short and sweet by just copying her trigger.

Bazaar Trader

“There is no Better Deal than this.”


Conquer All

Yasova Dragonclaw

Unwilling Pawn of History Plot.

Yasova is a very good Steal style Commander. Her color identity consists of the two colors (Blue & Red) with the most steal cards in the game. Yasova herself provides steal in the Creature department. The best part of her steal is that it is simply a combat step trigger and not an attack trigger. You do not even have to attack with her as the stolen Creature can do that for her. Utilizing the other upfront steal cards in her color identity, you can get all the good stuff from your opponents.  If you are looking for a Steal style Commander then Yasova is a recommended choice for her own steal trigger and also the diversity her color identity provides.


What do you think of the Temur khan of the past? Is the old Dragonclaw fitting to be your Steal style Commander? Share with us your thoughts in the comments below. And with the last Khan done, we are nearing the end of the Commander Review for Fate Reforged. Do stay tune for the last of the series in our next article. Till then.


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


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