Everyone here at the Casual Planeswalker is eagerly anticipating our trip to Denver’s Pre-Release for New Phyrexia, hosted by Front Range Magic. While there’s a lot to look forward to in the new set, including the Praetors
March of the Praetors Post, a whole menagerie of new Living Weapons, and more Infect than you can shake a Staff of the Ages
Staff of the Ages at, there are few things about the set that have occurred to us as being a little less obvious, but nonetheless significant.
One factor that we think might play a game-changing role on Saturday is the phenomenon we’ve affectionately dubbed “Phyrexian Firebreathing”.
There certainly isn’t an abundance of creatures with this ability, but there is the potential to use Immolating Souleater to deal 10+ damage on the third turn and that’s nothing to sneeze at. While Ogre Menial might not exactly look appealing, he’s got Infect built in and will only need half as much pumping for the kill-shot.
Of course, the most obvious member of this elite club is Moltensteel Dragon. Under most circumstances you’ll be able to use Phyrexian mana to power Moltensteel Dragon onto the battlefield on the third or fourth turn. Because this format will be light on fliers (with the exception of some over-priced Blue drakes) Molty will be that much more likely to go unblocked. Then, pump ad nauseum (your own) and enjoy the satisfaction of knowing that you are using the luxuries provided by Phyrexian domination to the fullest.
But wait, folks, that’s not all. There are few ways to take Phyrexian Firebreathing from good to great. In addition to the obvious compliment provided by Green in pumping and life gain, there is the possibility of lending your Firebreathers Infect via Triumph of the Hordes.
Similar to employing life gain to bring yourself back from the brink is the use of Phyrexian Unlife which would allow you to utilize ALL of your life total for pumping, leaving you open to death by poison, but probably within range of the win.
Of course mana acceleration in the form of GeosurgeGeosurge would allow you to deal the damage your need without borrowing so hard against your life total. Priest of Urabrask, the red-headed stepchild of Priest of Gix
Priest of Gix, similarly pays for himself but with the additional benefit of mana-fixing.
Finally, the presence of both Moltensteel and Souleater in the Life for Death Intro Pack makes it one of our favorites as far as the New Phyrexia pre-cons go. These aggressive creatures combined with life gain and great defenders like Cathedral Membrane
Cathedral Membrane, make us super-excited to play with this new deck. More than likely we’ll make “dibs” on Life for Death the consolation prize for being the first guy to drop out off his respective event.
As with any great new ability, there are a myriad of ways to get your jollies using Phyrexian Firebreathing. We think it’s going to be a significant, or at least enjoyable, aspect of our gameplay this coming Saturday, but we’d love to hear what you think.