Whenever a new set comes out there are usually 3-5 cards that I really want to try and build decks with. I think there are a lot of really strong, constructed playable cards in this set, but I have a gew clear favorites. Here is my short list for Conflux cards that I want to build with:
Nyxathid (aka Handogoyf)
Knight of the Reliquary (aka Landogoyf)
Nyxathid looks like it is playable in both extended and standard. He seems like a natural fit in the rock decks that play Raven’s Crime and Life From the Loam. There is a good amount of hand disruption in standard right now as well: Thoughtseize, Ravenous Rats, Distress, Mind Shatter, Scepter of Fugue, Rotting Rats, and of course Raven’s Crime. Nyxathid could also give Cunning Lethemancer, a card that has never quite been good enough for competitive play, a chance to shine. Nyxathid looks like it could be great in some kind of mono-black aggro deck or a BG aggro-rock deck. Mike was always a big advocate of taking the The Rack out of Black Rack, so maybe now would be a good time to revisit that strategy,
Master Transmuter isn’t normally the type of card I would want to build around. I think this lady is too fine to ignore, and Master Transmuter could be the cornerstone of a really good artifact deck in block or standard. There are some really interesting synergies with Transmuter and comes-into-play effects. BDM has been mentioning for a while that comboing Transmuter with Tidehollow Sculler could allow you to RFG 1-2 cards from your opponent’s hand a turn. Transmuter can also sneak something big into play, like a Platinum Angel or a Sharum. I could definitely see some series of plays like this during block season: Transmute Sphinx Summoner into play, Tutor Sharum into hand –> Transmuter the Summoner back to hand, windmill slam Sharum into play (reanimating something) –> Transmute Sharum back to hand, putting Summoner into play… repeat until your opponent concedes.
Knight of the Reliquary is the card I like the most from the set. In the early game he can fix your lands and accelerate your mana. Late game, he is an undercosted win condition. I thought building a deck with him would be pretty easy, but every time I try to draw up a list I keep getting hung up on the lands. His second ability is not that stellar when you want to be three or four colors. The best thing I could figure to do with him was to put him into the GW little kid deck that was somewhat popular during block. That deck ran enough basics to make his ability worth while, and using him to fetch out some Treetop Villages seems pretty awesome. The other card I think would be awesome in the GW deck is Lapse of Certainty, which would give the deck a way other than Gaddock Teeg to combat a Wrath of God. Knight of the Reliquary seems like it could also work in a GW big mana deck, maybe something that plays a lot of lifegain (Primal Command and Feudkillers Verdict in the same deck!). This is the type of deck I will likely try to work on for the next PTQ season.
Anyone else have any pet cards from the new set? Working on any new deck lists? Lets hear about your impressions in the comments! I will be working on building a Nyxathid deck this week, so I will post again in a few days with a list and some early results.