June 18th sees the release of Modern Horizons 2. In this article I will talk about some of the cards I think will see play in Commander. The focus will be on the cards that are completely new to the format. This is not a top 10 list but ten cards that caught my attention while going through the full spoiler which is now available. So let's begin.
Yavimaya, Cradle of Growth.
My personal favorite. It's like Urborg, Tomb of Yawgmoth but for green/forests. This card is automatic inclusion for all decks that go green. Unfortunately, there isn't a Cabal Coffers for green (yet). An instant "staple" for me. Let's hope they print the other three colors as well.
Are you trying to "appease" your opponents but there are Eldrazi that won't let you? The opponent goes wide and it's a Craterhoof incoming. This card is your answer. It can be difficult to calculate when to suspend it, but if you already know your opponents game plan, you can cast it earlier and be proactive. While all the "suspend" cards from Morden Horizons 2 are good, this one is probably my favorite of the five.
Grist, the Hunger Tide.
A new planeswalker card that has an interesting static ability.
Fortunately, your Commandzone is not on the “battlefield” so this ability allows you to play Grist, the Hunger Tide as your insects-commander. Although I don't yet know what kind of game I will build with Grist, I am convinced that really nice things will be brewed with it.
You can't have too many tutors in Commander. Point. Profane tutor is, like many other cards in Modern Horizons 2, an homage, a tribute to another card. In this case, it's a weaker copy of Demonic Tutor, or a variant of it if you will. If you want to pay tribute to a legendary card, a legend must make the species, that's it. I really appreciate that they brought back one of my favorite artists for this. Richard Kane Ferguson has a unique style that I love. So yes, Profane Tutor + Commander = 100% true.
Sword of Hearth and Home.
Another sword in the cycle. I was hoping for more than one, but this one is really good. I think this sword is a better version of Sword of the Animist. While Sword of the Animist lets you search for a land when you attack, Sword of Hearth and Home have protection against white and green. And it gives +2/+2 instead of +1/+1 from Sword of the Animist. “Exile a creature you own” is only important if you have a deck that cares about that sort of thing. But it allows you to return a creature controlled by an opponent.
If you Profane Tutor was an homage to Demonic Tutor, can you guess what Timeless Witness got its name from? Most green decks run Eternal Witness to get a specific card back from the grave. But not all green decks have many options to bring back Eternal Witness. Timeless Witness is a good addition so you can later "eternalize" it and get another card back while creating a 4/4 zombie. A bit high cost for both the card cost and Eternalize but in green decks it shouldn't be a problem.
Can you guess... No, now we move on, you got the hint. Tireless Tracker is a fantastic card machine that can also offer ETB triggers and token feasts if you are inclined that way. So this updated version caught my interest immediately. While Tireless Provisioner doesn't give you cantrips, it does give you the choice of a Food or a Treasure token instead when getting a land into play. Don't like to draw cards? Here you have extra life or mana instead. Food and Treasure become relevant as more and more strategies become Food-centric and free mana is one of the pillars of Commander.
Paragon of Nykthos.
This is a good card if you are playing a Trostani or an Emmaral deck. With life-gain being a popular theme for Commander, Nythos Paragon is a must have for this type of deck that makes tokens with lifelink. Nykthos Paragon makes tokens bigger every time they deal damage. Even if it costs a bit to get out, it's worth it with perfectly fine "stats" for a 4/6 creature.
This card is perhaps the one that needs the least explanation. Being able to get hexproof and above all protection against various naughty combos during two turns in Commander is really good. Okay, the counter can send things your way in your untap phase before the rebound effect triggers. But just that they have to remember it is worth it.
Nettlecyst is a great card in its own right but of course this card is perfect for a Voltron deck. Since it's a Living weapon it can be wielded by itself so it doesn't matter who your Commander is but of course it's best to find one that plays well with the Voltron theme. I think Nettlecyst is a better version of All That Glitters (which you should also play in a Voltron deck).
So these are the cards that stood out the most to me but before I end this write-up I would like to give some Honorable Mentions .
Tribal – Modern Horizons 2, like its predecessor, is really strong on tribals such as Merfolks and Squirrels.
Enchantress – A recurring theme is enchantments and tools to make them relevant.
Artifact Lands – They come in dropped but are given in all decks that have a minimal artifact theme. Did I mention they are two-tone?
Thank you for reading. Now start building, Commanders!