Onslaught Limited Synergy Review: Five Million Husk And Pathmage Tricks

I’ve got lots of tricks for Limited players – but considering that 90% of them revolve around unblocked black creatures that do horrible things to you when unmorphed, there are staples. Oh, and Dirge of Dread.

Accursed Centaur

Ugh. A 2/2 for one is all right when you can actually play it on turn 1. Guess what! You can’t!

Anurid Murkdiver

I’ve seen this card show up in the maindeck, when watching other players. It’s not very good when they’re not playing swamps, but it is a Zombie Beast; it works off Wirewood Savage, Cruel Revival, Shepherd of Rot, Feeding Frenzy, and so on. Those are two decent creature types given the proper deck, and it’s still big enough to matter when it hits the board – barring a blocking Daru Lancer. Should they be playing swamps, the game will end rapidly enough.

Aphetto Dredging

If you’re playing Tribal – and Hell, everything in black seems to be part Zombie, to boot – this card gives you a straight up three-for-one. Great way to follow an opposing board clear, or to make a clearing of your own not quite so painful.

I like the card with cycling cards, which pushes through more of my library while giving me solid card advantage. Using Disciple of Malice to fix my mana, then pulling him back with other clerics and then discarding him again… Well, he never sees play, and it’s a lot of mana, but it’s won me a game or two. You need creature types that occur in both black and x to see maximum benefit, which includes beasts with green, goblins with red, clerics with white… So you’re not too bad off if you draft right.

Aphetto Vulture

As self-recurring creatures go, well… It’s not bad. It’s damn pricey, sitting at six mana for a 3/2 flier – which is about two mana too expensive for me to like, and one mana too expensive for me to see as good. The main point is to give you back a zombie, and not at card advantage. It’s just card parity, which isn’t awful.

On its own, the card works well at recurring zombies, which are effective at attacking. If the vulture can be blocked by a 2/4 or better, it’s not worth recurring – but there are other good evasion zombies like Gluttonous Zombie, Anurid Murkdiver, and Shepherd of Rot (which is sort of like evasive damage) which you would want to get back.


Here’s a funny moment for you. I played a game of Standard today. My opponent first turn Duressed me – hitting nothing. He then Duressed twice in the late game, hitting a Call of the Herd and then hitting nothing. Essentially, he lost a huge amount of card advantage because Duress didn’t work at all against me. Blackmail is not Duress, and it’s not a”choose and discard” effect, either. It’s somewhere between the two. Blackmail may not be the best card in Limited… But given that if you nailed four-card hand on turn 5 you are likely to hit something good, or even a two-card hand on turn 7, Blackmail isn’t bad. Remember that in draft or even in sealed, trading a low pick card for a high pick card is a sort of virtual card advantage.


Costs as much as Drudge Skeletons, which is almost always borderline playable… But this extends its regeneration ability to other zombies, and it’s a cleric. The card literally hums with synergy. Sure, it’s a two-drop – a two-drop that makes Gangrenous Goliath, Shepherd of Rot, and Nantuko Husk regenerators. You know what this does when your opponent Akroma’s Vengeances? Well, he cries.

Cabal Archon

Every cleric is a Syphon Soul! This card is good by itself (it’s like Highway Robber for the same price) and then amazing with other clerics. Ever opened this with a Dredging beside it in a back and thought,”I think the pack is telling me something?” I have. This is lifegain how it’s supposed to be done: Chump blocking, dealing two damage, and then giving me two life. If that’s not worth a card to do, well, hell – is Shock worth a card either?

Cabal Executioner

This card requires something to pass the damage through or get over your opponent: Crafty Pathmage is brutal, if fragile, with this card. The morphing cost means you won’t be able to rely on that, and probably won’t use it very often. (Unlike Entrancer.) Crown of Ascension or even Vitality Charm work. Put Mythic Proportions on this card, and wow, that’s good stuff.

Either way, it’s a very dangerous cleric. Choking Tethers turns into two damage and a Chainer’s Edict, and various other cards can make it temporary boon.

Cabal Slaver

The black clerics are really good. Slaver works with Goblins. He works really well with morphing goblins, since they turn into Headhunter-style creatures alongside him. An especially good goblin is, of course, the stupid Goblin Glider. Sure, it’s bad by itself, but when it’s a cheaper Abyssal Specter? Not bad. Morphers are better, of course, since they morphing goblins are better cards, but the Slaver is solid in R/B. By himself, he’s a cleric in a colour that likes clerics.

Chain of Smog

Gerrard’s Verdict always interested me when I played it in draft. I enjoyed drafting black/white/blue and using it, as I could continue to pound away with card advantage via various tricks. I have no idea if I was ever good at Invasion draft, though.

Chain of Smog isn’t Gerrard’s Verdict – a card I didn’t much care for in Standard – but it’s more interesting. First, it’s one of the free chain spells. The merry-go round stops when you get off. If you have a smaller hand than him, you will most likely come out ahead. Say you have two cards remaining in hand, and he has four. You’re good. If you have more, though, the card is worse. I really wouldn’t recommend it in draft; in my opinion, it’s too shaky and the effect isn’t powerful enough to be worth playing such a situational card. However, I should note that sometimes you might want to discard a creature to reanimate via Doomed Necromancer or to pump a Soulless One by discarding zombies.

Cover of Darkness

Shared Triumph is good all the time; Cover of Darkness is amazing 4 out of 5 times, the other one being useless when they’re playing black and can handle the resulting rush. Cabal Slaver, goblins, name goblin. Mistform creatures. Name Cleric, swing with Executioner, Ebonblade Reaper, and Headhunter. And so forth. Even if you’re just naming beasts, if they aren’t playing black (or even if they are – black might not be able to handle your critters), it’s solid. Keep in mind their creatures gain fear as well, so don’t be too sloppy with what you name.

Crown of Suspicion

This can be used to nail a single one-toughness creature – or if there is a 1/2 and then other one-toughness creatures of the same type, well, you can spread the Suspicion and nail more than one creature. In that manner it’s a very tricky one-toughness killer.

What it combos with, of course, is Imagecrafter and Mistform Wall (I would say the Mistform Shrieker, but I would probably just put it on the Shrieker and swing). The Crafter lets you use any */2 creature for the job, while the Wall of course does the duty itself.

Cruel Revival

While it’s five mana, Cruel Revival is a straight up two-for-one trade when you have the zombie to revive; that makes it a good card. The fact it’s targeting problem is about half of black’s creatures, and it can hit anything else, makes it black’s best common. Imagecrafter lets you target anything, while an opposing creature-type changer will thwart your efforts until activated. Try not to tip your opponent off to the presence of a Cruel Revival; things like looking at your graveyard for zombies or eyeing that one splashed swamp are clues he might act on.

Death Match

Cards which apply equally to both players – or symmetrical enchantments, as this one is – require that your deck be able to take advantage of the card while your opponent isn’t able to fully benefit from it. There are two primaries keys to using a card like Death Match.

First, creatures which are”immune” – or difficult to remove – with Death Match are obviously very useful. A four toughness creature can be killed by a single activation, and as such, a deck full of four-toughness creatures will most likely suffer less than a deck running say, a ton of goblins. You can make your prime creature type immune to Death Match through Steely Resolve, too.

Second, instant-speed creatures are extremely key, functioning as a combat trick. This ties into the third one, which is creature creation cards. There are, sadly, no instant-speed creatures in Onslaught, so the creature token creators are your only option – there are three of those, two of which are rare, though. (Don’t forget the Symbiotic creatures, though – The Ferrett)

As with a lot of cards, picking up a Death Match in a draft relies on your deck. Other people who don’t have a Death Matchable deck won’t pick up the Death Match. So it’s not a priority pick unless it’s really good and I’m hallucinating that it requires tight deck building.

Death Pulse

It’s uncommon, unlike Solar Blast, but it does so much more (three to the dome is great and all – but yeah, Pulse can kill without forcing a one-for-two loss). Death Pulse can kill most of the creatures in the set; the cycling rewards you with a dead Sparksmith and a card in hand, a key trade in most games. (Uncounterable Afflict, eh?) When used in combat, it will likely lead to a fatty dying to a dork, or a fatty dying against another fatty and giving you an extra card in hand. Be careful with it, but anyways, it’s great removal. Revival is better, of course, but Pulse is sort of cheaper. (The two mana symbols make it less splashable and thereby”more expensive.”)

Dirge of Dread

Another one of those delightful Alpha strike cards, the Dirge is probably better as a cycling card than for the alpha strike. The Strike will happen, of course, in some games. But often enough, you might just want your Skirk Commando or Riptide Entrancer to just get through and do its thing early on in the game. Here, the Dirge is better than Choking Tethers and Wave of Indifference because it’s a cantrip. It’s maindeckable by virtue of its cantrip status, too.

Disciple of Malice

Because White is a weenie rush colour with a number of solid soldiers, the Disciple will likely be sideboarded in, or be maindeckable should you need clerics for spells like Profane Prayers or Gangrenous Goliath. It can always be cycled; keep in mind when you play it and when to cycle it is the key to playing this card. I wouldn’t maindeck it unless I was going W/B clerics, but it could rise from the sideboard often enough.

Doomed Necromancer

It’s surprising that this card is rare, while its symmetrical card (Whipcorder) is uncommon… Except in my boxes, where I got more Mobilizations than ‘corders.

It’s unfortunate he doesn’t have morph; a surprise blocker from the grave would be really quite nice. Anyway, the Necromancer isn’t exactly a stellar rare, but he makes other strong elements of your deck stronger by allowing you to reuse them for slam them into play when your opponent doesn’t want them to come back. If nothing else, you can chump it out and toss another creature back, not bad. It can two for one trade when blocking morphers, and so on. As a cleric, is sits in the stronger of the tribes.

Ebonblade Reaper

The general rule of Magic is that dealing damage wins games – and no matter how else you’d like to slice it, the Reaper does possess the ability to deal a lot of damage. This is the only creature who, all by his lonesome, can take your opponent from twenty to nine in a single hit. It requires him going through unblocked and being morphed at just the right time during combat, but such things have and do happen. If not, it’s nothing more than a 2/2 creature or a cleric who is probably never going to attack.

Barring one combo, of course. Should you be preparing a massive, dirge of dread fueled alpha-strike, placing Crown of Fury on Ebonblade Reaper will cause his damage to resolve before your other creatures, allowing you to drop him to half his life and then deal out the other creature beats.

I still have no idea (given this set of thoughts) if I’d play this card. Maybe it’s the art.

Endemic Plague

In the mirror, this could be a brutal sideboard card.”I sack my elf and you lose four elves – wheeee!” Against a deck with a strong tribal theme, this and a Mistform creature or Imagecrafter, will work nicely at performing a mostly one-sided wrath of God. Plus, black gets a lot of creature types via zombie; Beast, Goblin, Bird, Insect and Cleric. With Red, too, you get Threaten – seven mana, but it’s killing off stuff based on the creatures he has, which is pretty good, especially if he wanted the threatened creature to stick around and was willing to let it pass through in combat.

Entrails Feaster

Strange card. The drawback isn’t much of a drawback once the game gets rolling: Creatures die. They do that an awful, awful lot. So it’s sort of like a very slow, very timely Mortivore without regeneration. If you play this on the first turn, it won’t get rolling for a while, but should it do so…

Remember, this isn’t Odyssey block where you worry so much about your graveyard. There’s combo potential with Aphetto Alchemist (boring) or Patriarch’s Bidding, which is a lot better in limited when your opponent gets nothing since the cat ate it all.

Fade from Memory

Huh? Cremate, Decompose, Rapid Decay, Coffin Purge… And then this? What the hell?

Fallen Cleric

Fat is fat. The Zombie / Cleric is fat, which is good. Sure, it’s five mana and morph combat tricks revolve around it getting into combat with another cleric – but that might happen once or twice.

Protection from a creature type, when it’s on a creature large enough to matter, is not so bad. The Fallen Cleric can benefit heartily from the aid of an Imagecrafter, making anything it scraps with – or that you don’t want to be able to block it – a cleric. Just keep in mind the Fallen Cleric’s weakness is its own lack of synergy in a cleric deck; Boneknitter can’t target it, nor can Battlefield Medic. That’s not so good.

False Cure

Purely sideboard card, since there’s nothing which can force lifegain onto an opponent reliably within Onslaught block. He has to gaining life himself.

Feeding Frenzy

It depends on your deck – but note that there are nineteen playable zombies in Onslaught. A lot of them are rares, but there’s a number of decent enough common ones. If the Frenzy can do -1/-1, it can kill creatures you want dead. If it can do more, or they’re playing zombies … it will become fairly strong, fairly fast. More kill is always good.

Festering Goblin

Because of the focus on 2/2 creatures within Onslaught, the Festering Goblin has a boosted strength based on the ability to trade with 2/2 creatures in combat. Given more complex situations, the Goblin can make your opponent trade or lose creatures he doesn’t want to. This card is good with Cabal Slaver, obviously, and nice with Nantuko Husk, since being able to use the”night” effect whenever you’d like is a nice convenience. Remember this and a Husk can kill a 3/3 with Feeding Frenzy, and so on.

Frightshroud Courier

None of the other Couriers offer such nasty evasion abilities: The Courier obviously combines with zombies you want to get through unblocked. Nail them with a Haunted Cadaver, hitting for four damage, and then take out three cards? How amusing. But, the real meat of the situation is simply nailing for a lot of evasive damage. You pay three mana for Severed Legion, and that’s the same as the Courier’s effect when grafted onto another Zombie. True, it won’t get through unblocked against all decks, but +2/+2 will put a lot of creatures over the common range of black dudes. A 5/5 Wretched Anurid is hard to deal with on turn 4, especially when it’s been gifted with fear.

Gangrenous Goliath

A 4/4 for five normally comes with a drawback in black. This guy comes with a great little ability. You may not necessarily get the clerics to use the ability consistently – but who cares? If you have a handful of clerics in your deck, he will occasionally return to your hand – and man, you know how strong a recurring 4/4 is in Limited?

Oh, neat trick: If an opponent Wraths, sack him to a Nantuko Husk, and then tap the clerics to put him back in your hand. Just pointing out that because of the instant-speed nature of the trickery, it’s a lot better than other recurring cards. (Granted, it’s still on a creature…)

Gluttonous Zombie

Five mana for 3/3 with evasion is standard uncommon/common cost in limited, and it usually is fairly worthwhile. The Zombie has only a single symbol in his cost, making it fairly likely to be cast, even in a splashed black deck. As it’s just a basic 3/3 for five, there aren’t a lot of combos with the Zombie.

Gravespawn Sovereign

So far we’ve had the lord of soldiers and the lord of bananas. The Sovereign is, again, as different from those two as they are from each other. It requires five total zombies – which isn’t that hard to do considering the number of decent zombies in the set. So, if you get it out, you can sit back and reanimate lost creatures. Especially good if you’re able to kill off something good of his to steal, but generally not so great.

Grinning Demon

I would like to suggest comboing this guy with Nantuko Husk. Should your opponent Pacify or Sandskin your demon, just have the Husk eat him and you won’t die to Pacified Demon Syndrome. Behind that, it’s big and fat. It will lose you a stalled game if it can’t break through, too.

Haunted Cadaver

The general rule is that you want to block most black morph creatures. The Cadaver obviously maintains this rule, in that if it slips through, it probably knocks out all or most of your opponent’s hand. You can rely on the morph ability to do the job, or you can attempt to use tricks like Choking Tethers, Dirge of Dread, Crafty Pathmage, or Frightshroud Courier, to get him through to nail them for their pretty cards in hand. With those elements in your deck, he is likely playable. Without, you will have to decided based on your other morph creatures, and your need for zombies.

Head Games

Did you play with Traumatize?


I’ve seen this guy get dropped on turn 2 and nail an opponent for two cards before a blocker is put down. He’s not amazing, but if you need clerics and your opponent lacks early drops, well… You know. He can be pushed through repeatedly by Crafty Pathmage, if you’d like. I generally wouldn’t draft the card unless I saw great benefit or synergy in doing so.


Wrath of God-like effects are deadly cards in limited. The simple point that card advantage is very possible – and especially pronounced when considering the number of worthy morph creatures in the format. This kills them all, and if he’s tapped out, they won’t ever see the light of day.

Beyond that, remember this card can be used after damage is dealt in a turn. Attack with some useless junk creatures, deal enough to put your opponent’s stuff into the two range, and then drop the Infest. It’s good stuff.

Misery Charm

Destroy target [creature type] should tell you right then and there that Misery Charm combines with Imagecrafter to simply become B: Destroy target creature. The other two abilities are good, with two points of life being fair for B and returning a cleric working nicely if the cleric traded off with something else. Fun with Rotlung Reanimator or Cabal Archon, too.

Nantuko Husk

Phyrexian Ghoul, reborn. While the Husk seems to be in the wrong block – I hear he would have been great in Odyssey block – that doesn’t matter. What does matter is the ability to move creatures for free to the graveyard is good. Opponent Pacify your Soulless One? Sack it, use Unholy Grotto, you’re back in business. The Husk combos with lots of neat stuff – Slice and Dice all the creatures off the board, but make a giant husk and then swing for six-plus damage right then and there. Starstorm and Infest, too. Beats up morph creatures all day and lets you trade any dork to keep him alive. I hear he likes Mobilization and Boneknitter, too, of course.

The real stellar combo is of course, the symbiotic creatures. Swing with the Husk, sack the Wurm… Deal a whopping eight points in a single turn. The Beast and Elf are less powerful, but no less potent for how vicious they make the husk. Quality card. And a common!

Oversold Cemetery

Use this with Barkhide Mauler to draw an extra card per turn. Use it with Krosan Tusker to draw two extra cards per turn. Both of those are uncounterable, and nigh impossible to deal with. Also works nicely with Riptide Entrancer, assuming you have some way to get her through again. Recur Kai over and over again to get a Forbid-like lock (it needs UUUU or 3UUU though). Amusing would be recurring Disciple of X and Astral Slide, letting you slide turn after turn while drawing cards as well. And so on. If nothing else the Cemetery gives you an extra card to work with every turn you go over four in the grave – and that, my friends, is an amazing card.

Patriarch’s Bidding

Assuming your deck is very heavily tribal while your opponent’s is not, the Bidding is alarmingly vicious. You get back four soldiers while he gets back a cleric. Also, the Bidding applies the chosen type to both players: If he only has beasts, and you have beasts + elves, for example, then you will get both back while he will only get the beasts.

An opponent with an empty graveyard is advised to choose Whippoorwill when this card is played. Entrails Feaster, previously mentioned, is the only card that works nicely with this effect. If you are playing the bidding, it is also possible to cycle through a big pile of creatures with a Nantuko Husk and then slam them all back into play (assuming they are all the same type, which is quite possible).

Profane Prayers

The Prayers is reliant on clerics. If you have the clerics, it’s good. If have only a few, it’s all right – removal is removal, and if it kills a one-toughness or two-toughness creature, it can be a fine enough 22-23rd card. If you have a lot and your opponent has a lot, this card is insane, dealing out huge seven point slams that turn games right around. Only really combos with Riptide Replicator, or creature type changers. If Mistform Mutant’s ability was cheaper, well, then it would be good as well. Most of the time, this will dwell in my sideboard – but against another cleric deck with a cleric deck, the card can be just plan broken, considering how low a pick it is.

Prowling Pangolin

While two creatures can sometimes be a pretty bad a trade (wow! Two insect tokens!) but other time it’s just a 6/5 beast for five mana. The drawback is, in effect easier to deal with than the Carrion Wurm’s, as the wurm’s drawback would let a two-creature tagteam to take down the Wurm without losing either of them.

I like this card with stuff like Slice and Dice or Infest, to clear the board of easy trades for my opponent. It’s good after a Wrath, obviously, and so on. Very good black uncommon.

Rotlung Reanimator

Either the card is good – when it’s a 2/2 that trades with a morph creature then throws up a 2/2 afterwards – or it’s excellent with Cabal Archon, other clerics, and so on, where the number of generated zombie tokens is disturbing – or with Imagecrafter, where almost every dead creature on either side of the board gives you another 2/2. And then the card is broken when you’ve got a Soulless One on the table and your opponent is staring at your zombie clerics and realising it’s not going to get better from here on out. What’s he going to do, Wrath and give you a pile of zombie tokens before he can act?

Screeching Buzzard

What a weird card; it’s not even a zombie. Anyways, it’s a fair black flier. Generates card advantage most of the time, and most colours actually don’t have a lot of decent fliers. Put a Crown of Fury on it and it pretty much owns the skies.

Severed Legion

Essentially a 2/2 evasion creature for three mana, the Severed Legion is pretty much a mainstay in black Onslaught Limited decks. It’s a Zombie, sadly, not a soldier (it is a legion, after all) and does little in the ways of tricks. But evasion is evasion.

Shade’s Breath

For a turn, all your”one” cards die. Your tribal stuff becomes useless, and all your creatures are”shades.” Oh, but you can pump your creatures during combat!

It’s not an outright horrible card, but it’s extremely narrow focus much of the time and X1B for X +1/+1 bonuses isn’t much of a Giant Growth effect. I’d generally rely on better cards to carry the day.

Shepherd of Rot

Evasive, reusable damage – even the kind that hurts you and your opponent – is not to be underestimated. Start out with a fast, Festering Goblin/Wretched Anurid/Spined Basher beatdown, lay your opponent down close to his deathbed, then let the Shepherd do its job and finish him off. Plus the Shepherd is both a zombie and a cleric, making him an interesting tribal enabler. Very good in Black/White, as he shares 66% of the major creature types in such a deck. The natural combo here is life gain: Cabal Archon and this guy are very fun together.

Silent Specter

Yet another”morph with damage trick” creature that you’ll like Crafty Pathmage with. With this guy, you expect the rare muscle of being a 4/4 flier to do the job. Very solid card, and pretty close to being a bomb.


While Smother is definitely one of the strongest black cards to hit standard, it’s not exactly amazing in Limited. It’s solid removal, as it kills morph creatures and doesn’t cost much – but sometimes you’ll have it in hand without a target for it. It’s a lot like playing Ghastly Demise, except you can’t use chump blockers to bolster your graveyard count into the Demise work. A good card, but I’d rather have Cruel Revival most of the time.

Soulless One

Where as the other Ones have various abilities, differing from the near useless Morph ability on Nameless one to the pretty solid spirit link on Doubtless one, Soulless one’s ability is simply get bigger. And bigger, my friends, is probably the best thing. Not only are zombies a highly playable creature type, with nineteen playable zombies (half of which are common), creatures trading in combat no longer becomes a problem. The zombies will still contribute to the Soulless One after the death. This becomes extremely vicious with Rotlung Reanimator, where your zombie clerics die and end up adding to the Soulless One doubly so (there are four zombie clerics including the Reanimator). Very fun card with Boneknitter. Almost impossible to remove once it gets going, as well – the best removal being a large blocker.

Spined Basher

The Morph trick is basically”2/2 changes to 3/1 and trades with a 3/3″ which isn’t bad, but doesn’t justify playing it morphed unless you’re trying to confuse your opponent – i.e., you don’t want him to know which one is the Ebonblade Cleric, Cabal Executioner, or Skirk Commando. Or you just don’t have the black, of course.

On the other hand, as a 3/1 beast for 2B, he contributes the zombie types in black, and the beast cards in Red or Green. This is a solid common; nothing amazing but very good when combined with beast happy cards, like Wirewood Savage or Aether Charge.

Strongarm Tactics

If your opponent has no cards in hand, or you know he has no creature cards, Strongarm Tactics is sort of like a player targeting Sonic Burst that has”and he discards a card” built in. Now, the tactics – by that alone – isn’t all that great. Good, though, if you know he has no creatures, which you can usually tell if he’s reached six mana and stopped playing them.

You can combine this with Doomed Necromancer or Patriarch’s Bidding to decent effect. You lose two cards to get a fatty into play, but you also get to knock one out of your opponent’s hand. Amusing in that manner. The card sort of wishes it was in the same set as Ichorid; heh.


A good choice for reprinting, as it fits nicely into Onslaught. It kills morph creatures – and you want to kill morph creatures. Need something else instead of killing morph creatures? Cycle it along. There’s not a lot of combos with Swat, as it’s kill, but I guess you could see a Festering Goblin die in combat and then kill a 3/3 instead of a 2/2.

Syphon Mind

They printed this card as Unhinge in Torment. What did I say about it then? I said it looked like it should be in Invasion block. Which isn’t too off base (still wrong, I said it was playable – it really wasn’t). Anyways, this is a multiplayer card and thus it’s cost is higher since it can hit multiple players. I’m glad to see multiplayer support! I would play the Syphon Mind if I needed a last card; it’s splashable and card advantage. It’s just not very good. Remember that if you hit an empty hand, you don’t draw for it.

Syphon Soul

Put”draw a card” on this and I might play it. Reprint it again and I still won’t play it, unless I have to worry about people playing Worship. Which I don’t here. Baaaah.

Thrashing Mudspawn

Barring tales of Inspirited Jareths, the Mudspawn is generally a fair enough card. 4/4 fatties in black, draw back or otherwise, are pretty solid. It can starts smacking as of turn 4, which isn’t too bad.

Generally, the Mudspawn works a lot like Sparksmith: Anything you can kill, you don’t mind taking a point or two to be rid of. Anything you can’t kill, you don’t mess with. A good combo card with Nantuko Husk, by the way: This way you can bail out if combat becomes too troublesome. Also, it puts damage on the stack and then goes away before it would hurt you. It’s also a beast, providing further synergy between black and green.

Undead Gladiator

The Gladiator is amusing, because it gives everything you’ve got in your hand a sort of slow, expensive cycling. It lets you put fatties in the grave for Bidding, or lets you run stuff like naturalize maindeck with the possibility to just cycle it if you don’t want it. Don’t think Mudspawn or Glory Seeker will do you good in the late game? The Gladiator takes them and moves onto better parts of your deck. Albeit slowly.

Beyond that, he’s a 3/1 for 3 mana, and a Zombie. If you need Zombies, he’s pretty good since he keeps coming back. As a recursive creature, he’s not so good, but Compulsion powers + recursive creature make for a solid, if not first pick, card.

Visara the Dreadful

Imagecrafter + Wirewood Lodge = Two creatures kill a turn! Imagecrafter + Pearlspear Courier = Attack and kills! Visara by herself = Bloody freaking bomb to blow up all other bombs. Raargh die Silvos. Die Arcanis. Die Dragon Ro… uh, yeah. Die, Jare…

Okay. She can’t do everything – but almost! And the second-best flavour text in the set, too.

Walking Descration

Where’s the”Or they’re destroyed at the end of turn” clause? It’s like Nettling Imp, only it completely sucks.

Withering Hex

The other cycling = effect cards have great effects. Lightning Rift does shock. Astral Slide does just about everything, even letting you flip over Morph creatures without paying the mana cost. Invigorating Boon makes things bigger without even costing mana, making every cycling land a cycled primal boost for less mana. Fleeting Aven, well – he bounces back to your hand. Which is kinda bad sometimes.

But this. What the hell?

The Fleeting Aven at least swings for two (Come on, you know you like it) but this, this sloooooowly kills a single creature? Blargh!

Words of Waste

With Arcanis, you can lock your opponent’s drawstep down and force him to win with what he has on the board. His hand isn’t even going to stick around for long either. Without Arcanis, it’s generally garbage unless you have a way to draw a lot of extra cards. Words of Waste plus Overwhelming Instinct? The ultimate”I’m already winning, so I’ll just slip this Wurm in your ear” combo. Blah.

Wretched Anurid

If it hits once, it justifies the three points you’ll lose. Swing twice, your opponent isn’t feeling so well. Swing three times and it’s not dead yet? Somebody is doing pretty good with a 1B common Zombie beast. Just keep swinging and hope he doesn’t play Wall of Mulch.

There aren’t a lot of combos with this guy: I like Husk to be around to bail me – but that was obvious with the Mudspawn, too. He’s a cheap beast, and pretty decent to use with Wirewood Savage, but he’s not really much for combos.