Hello! Welcome to my set review of March of the Machine, where I will pick five cards of each colour and discuss my favourite cards from them.
Given that March of the Machine (aka MOM) also comes out with a set of preconstructed Commander decks, I’ll also be covering my favourite new cards from there in another article.
Without further ado, here are my favourite White cards!
I’m pretty confident that I’ll be talking about the Praetors in each of the colour articles. They are insanely pushed and so, so cool.
Elesh Norn is just daring your opponents to deal damage to you or your creatures. It’s not like the damage is prevented, but every instance of damage is turned into two-life loss for the source’s controller. Blasphemous Act while you’ve got a ton of tokens out? Okay, you better have saved up some mana. If you’re going to hit me, it better be for lethal! We haven’t even gotten to the backside.
The Argent Etchings, aside from having incredible art, is bomb set up. You get five 2/2 artifact creatures for your trouble, and if you had any untransformed Incubator tokens, you flip those too. Then add a +1/+1 and double strike to create some wild 3/3s. Chapter three annihilates the board and brings back your queen. It’s time to concede, opponent.
Phyrexian Rebirth, is that you? Sunfall is not only one mana less than the spell this evolved from, but it also EXILES all creatures. How brutal! All creatures get exiled and you get an Incubator artifact token with +1/+1 counters on it equal to all the creatures exiled with this. If I’m playing this, it’s in a control shell, a token deck, or an aristocrats/sacrifice deck. I have a planeswalker deck that is happy to have a second Farewell…
Oh, wow this is the chase uncommon of the set. Being able to run a narrow Fog that also is a less restricted Veil of Summer, that’s amazing. You and your permanents getting hexproof can be a huge difference in a turn. But better than that, Surge of Salvation in response to a Blasphemous Act that your opponent thinks is a big gotcha moment – chef’s kiss, baby. Shut it down.
I don’t know about battles just yet, but some of these seem extremely strong. Invasion of Gobakhan’s ETB is Elite Spellbinder on a battle. See a hand, get some information, and tax an opponent. Then hit it for three damage and you get Lightshield Array, one of the coolest enchantments for an aggressive deck, or just a deck that wants on board creature protection. You get so much out of this if you’re attacking with your creatures. Got a vigilant crew? Good luck, opponents. This is a battle that turns into an activated ability version of a creature Heroic Intervention.
Unfortunately, battles don’t have a ton support just yet as they’re a new type of card. It’s not like this gets slotted in an Enchantress deck or something yet, but hopefully one day we’ll get to that level of support. I think this is one of the coolest battles printed… so far.
Incredible surprise to get such a strong stax piece in a standard set like this lately. This rewards players who enjoy playing Phyrexian spells, but ultimately, if you slam this baby down even without the Phyrexian angle, you’re putting a stop to a ton of spells and while there are a bunch of solid Phyrexian creatures that see play. This is going to give your opponents pause. You’ll need to learn how to sequence a little bit if you go up against this, but it’s a Phyrexian Ethersworn Canonist with terrifying and fun art. I really love this and hate it at the same time.
- Archangel Elspeth – Elspeth almost made the cut. Two lifelinking tokens for a plus one. The ultimate ability is insane for a deck built around it. So cool, so good.
- Cut Short – Convoke means this can be a surprise when you’re tapped out. Destroying a tapped creature for this cost at instant speed with convoke would have been enough for a common, but this also hits planeswalkers who’ve activated on their turn.
- Dusk Legion Duelist – If you have a way to smack +1/+1 counters on a creature every turn (Soul Warden + Heliod, Sun-Crowned + Tendershoot Dryad, maybe) and you’ll have a massive body and a grip absolutely full.
- Enduring Bondwarden – A one mana creature that can give the backup ability to another creature with counters means that if you’ve got a Fling deck, you can keep the party going and pop the counters onto Bondwarden and do it again! Brion Stoutarm is calling!
- Essence of Orthodoxy – On ETB or another Phyrexian’s (NOT NONTOKEN!) ETB, you get to Incubate 2. That’s solid, solid, solid.
- Guardian of Ghirapur – Flexible but missing flash to really protect anything. More of a value piece or a way to get rid of a blocker or a piece. It’s solid for the cost.
- Knight-Errant of Eos – In the right deck, this is a free 4/4 with the possibility of drawing two creature spells.
- Monastery Mentor – Excellent reprint, pick them up while they’re cheap!
- Progenitor Exarch – Fantastic tech for the Phyrexian deck. Incubate 3 is solid and that activated ability can do work, basically saving you two mana.
- Scrollshift – A flexible blink spell that replaces itself. Blur but for a artifact, enchantment, or creature. Really, really good.
- Seal from Existence – Banishing Light with Ward 3? Yeah, buddy, sign me up big time. Toss this in your Enchantress lists.