Browse > Home / Strategy / Articles / Aether Revolt Spoilers: Limited Review for January 3

Aether Revolt Spoilers: Limited Review for January 3


Welcome to another sweet day of spoiler discussions for Aether Revolt! Today we get to talk about an energized version of Dark Confidant, a better Lurking Predators, and a new take on Followed Footsteps.

I'll be reviewing these cards from the standpoint of how well I expect them to perform in Limited. We can't rate the cards completely accurately without knowing the entire set, but we can evaluate the cards in an "average" limited format. You can find all the latest spoilers on the Aether Revolt page. Please note that if I haven't yet reviewed a card, it's probably because the official spoiler for it has not been released yet.

Grading scale

A: This card will often be the best card in one's deck. I'd consider splashing it where possible. (Gisela, the Broken Blade, Verdurous Gearhulk)
B: This card is rarely cut from a deck that can cast it. In draft, it signals that a color or archetype is open. (Murder, Aerial Responder)
C: Cards like this make up the majority of limited decks. You're neither excited nor embarrassed to have them in your deck. (Thraben Foulbloods, Lawless Broker)
D: I'm not putting this in my main deck unless I have a specific reason or I'm low on playables. (Prophetic Ravings, Curio Vendor)
F: This card will have little or no impact on the game if I draw it or is strictly sideboard-material. If I cast this card, please stage an intervention for me. (Deploy the Gatewatch, Madcap Experiment)

White

Aegis Automaton

$ 0.00 $ 0.00

C-

Technically this combos with revolt and improvise, but it does each at such an inefficient rate as to be rather unexciting. Even in a late game stall, this won't accumulate value all that quickly, and you certainly won't want multiples.

I'm classifying it under white because it should almost never be played in non-white decks, despite its generic mana cost.

Aeronaut Admiral

$ 0.00 $ 0.00

B-


At one toughness, Aeronaut Admiral dies to almost anything, but as long as it does stay around, it makes your Renegade Freighters even more ridiculous.

Aethergeode Miner

$ 0.00 $ 0.00

B

Aethergeode Miner can trigger revolt every turn after its cast, which is pretty sweet, and it's also a boring 3/1 when you need a boring 3/1. Definitely a weird rare, but definitely one that any white deck will be happy with.

Countless Gears Renegade

$ 0.00 $ 0.00

C+

While you'll sometimes have to cast this creature on turn two with no revolt just to keep up, there will also be plenty of incidental triggers making this upside-bear a nice addition to any white deck.

Blue

Mechanized Production

$ 0.00 $ 0.00

B

Using Mechanized Production as a win condition probably won't work out too well in Limited. Your best bet is to go for eight Servo tokens, but since fabricate isn't a mechanic in Aether Revolt, you probably couldn't accumulate eight artifacts quickly enough.

For non instant-win applications, this still seems like a valuable card. Getting a good vehicle like Untethered Express every turn is nuts, and even a simple puzzleknot or Renegade Map is going to provide value over time.

Merchant's Dockhand

$ 0.00 $ 0.00

B-

Early on this is a way to power out spells with improvise, and late game it becomes a reasonable and repeatable way to gain card advantage. It's similar to an Ornithopter, but it actually does something.

Reverse Engineer

$ 0.00 $ 0.00

B

I guess after Tezzeret's Ambition, we really needed another five mana sorcery that draws three cards and synergizes with artifacts. Reverse Engineer is obviously better and can become a very efficient spell if you simply Concentrate.

Black

Glint-Sleeve Siphoner

$ 0.00 $ 0.00

B

Black as a color doesn't use energy that much, but using Glint-Sleeve Siphoner in a Blue-Black or Green-Black deck can certainly yield a ton of value. While there are often ways to spend energy for board presence, spending it for card advantage is a little harder to do, and Glint-Sleeve Siphoner provides an efficient way to do it, while also being a reasonable two drop.

Yaheeni, Undying Partisan

$ 0.00 $ 0.00

B

Malakir Cullblade never was too exciting, but Yaheeni, Undying Partisan has haste and an indestructibility clause and starts off as a 2/2 that will sometimes get in for two free damage. That's not enough extra to make it unbeatable in Limited, but it certainly does help a lot.

Red

Freejam Regent

$ 0.00 $ 0.00

B+

The difference improvise makes is a lot more profound on a 6-drop. Freejam Regent coming down on turn 4 or 5 is a big deal and a very real possibility. The threat of 4-6 free damage from pumps if left unblocked makes this Dragon a very real threat in the air.

Hungry Flames

$ 0.00 $ 0.00

C+

Gone is the Welding Sparks at Common, and we're left with Hungry Flames at Uncommon. It's still removal and this is still Limited we're talking about, so it's still a good pick, but this does not bode well for the quality of removal in general for this set. I suppose we'll have to wait and see.

Release the Gremlins

$ 0.00 $ 0.00

B

When the option of being a Manic Vandal in a set full of artifacts is your fail case, you know the card is good. If you manage to snag two or three decent artifacts with Release the Gremlins, it will take a very serious effort by your opponent to recover from such a huge swing.

Siege Modification

$ 0.00 $ 0.00

C


Permanently crewing a Vehicle with this is a pretty huge threat if the opponent has no removal, but like most Auras it does open you up to getting 2-for-1'd. I'd prefer to maindeck this in aggressive Red decks with vehicles, but it could be sideboard material if opponents have enough removal or bounce spells.

Green

Aetherwind Basker

$ 0.00 $ 0.00

B+

With Servo tokens and other random creatures running about, it's not unreasonable for Aetherwind Basker to attack for 13-17 damage during its first attack. It's also not unreasonable to assume that its first attack will also be its last attack. The only question is if the format is slow enough and lacking in Murders that you can rely on a 7-drop that doesn't leave that much value if it gets hit by a kill spell. My initial answer is that this will be worth inclusion in almost all green decks, especially since we have Druid of the Cowl at Common.

Aid from the Cowl

$ 0.00 $ 0.00

B

Aid from the Cowl is a very inconsistent card. Sometimes it's the card that pulls a 4-5 drop three turns in a row and wins the game. Other times, it will keep revealing lands or instants/sorceries and be less impressive. It's worth noting though that even "missing" with Aid from the Cowl grants an advantage. Putting a land from the top of your deck onto the battlefield is roughly equivalent to drawing a card, and revealing an instant/sorcery is equivalent to scrying one since you can choose to put the card in the bottom of your deck.

In the late game if you're not already losing, revolt is easy enough to trigger. Simply attack with all or most of your creatures. Either your opponent will make fewer blocks or something of yours will die in combat and have a good chance of being replaced by the Aid from the Cowl trigger.

If you're on defense, Aid from the Cowl will very rarely trigger. Your opponent can save their removal/bounce spells for their own turn and they won't be compelled to block creatures you attack with.

Druid of the Cowl

$ 0.00 $ 0.00

C+

Mana elves at this cost are almost always good, and Druid of the Cowl is no exception. It doesn't crew Vehicles or work specifically well with artifacts or energy, but it does provide mana, which is one of the most basic needs of any Magic deck.

Rishkar, Peema Renegade

$ 0.00 $ 0.00

A-

The only requirement Rishkar, Peema Renegade asks is that you cast a creature on turn one or two and be playing green. For such a low setup cost, who would expect the extreme value he provides? He turns at least one other creature into a threat and/or mana source, while also being a three mana Skyshroud Troopers. Throw in the fact that he also synergizes with fabricate creatures and you've got an all-around awesome creature.

Rishkar's Expertise

$ 0.00 $ 0.00

B+

If you get to cast a four or five mana spell with Rishkar's Expertise, it's only costing you a few extra mana for the privilege of drawing an average of three cards. That's pretty extreme value. During the times that it only draws two cards and your most expensive card in hand is a three drop, this sorcery will obviously be underwhelming, but at least it digs you closer to wherever the good cards in your deck are hiding.

Multicolor

Renegade Rallier

$ 0.00 $ 0.00

B-

Renegade Rallier in hand on turn three means your two drop can always attack on turn two. If it trades, you get value. If it dies without trading, you get it back for free. If it gets in for damage, you can save Renegade Rallier for a more convenient turn when revolt is actually turned on. It's not an absurd amount of value to get a two drop back for free, but revolt is easy enough to trigger. All green white decks will want this and value it highly.

Rogue Refiner

$ 0.00 $ 0.00

B

This is a more efficient cantrip-creature than we almost ever get. I thought I was excited last set with Filigree Familiar, but this is even better. The only downside is that you have to be playing both green and blue to make use of it.

Tezzeret's Touch

$ 0.00 $ 0.00

C

It's a little bit harder to get 2-for-1'd with this than with Ensoul Artifact, and it's still just as hard to beat. It will sometimes catch opponents by surprise and get in for lots of damage, but more often a bounce or removal spell will end your fun somewhat quickly.

Winding Constrictor

$ 0.00 $ 0.00

B

Comboing with both fabricate and energy is a good recipe for being great in any Black-Green deck in the block, and Winding Constrictor beats the vanilla test on top of that by being a 2/3 for two mana.

Colorless

Spire of Industry

$ 0.00 $ 0.00

F+

In any two color deck, you'd prefer a basic land over Spire of Industry, even if you almost always had an artifact. Spire of Industry would require a 3+ color deck with an abundance of artifacts and even then it wouldn't always be preferable to a basic land.

Inspiring Statuary

$ 0.00 $ 0.00

D+

If you find yourself with a few too many non-artifact 5-drops and 6-drops, and you also have an average number of artifacts lying around, Inspiring Statuary would certainly fit into your deck. But that situation isn't as common as it might first seem and this Rare is not one I'd be happy to pick early in a draft.

Ornithopter

$ 0.00 $ 0.00

D-

Yes, it synergizes with improvise. No, that does not give you sufficient reason to put it into your deck.

Pacification Array

$ 0.00 $ 0.00

B-

Permanently holding open two mana to stop vehicles from being crewed or keep a large threat at bay is a sizeable investment, but one that can be reasonable to pay in Limited. If you're the aggressor, a tap ability or the threat of one can cause huge problems for the defending player who is trying to keep enough creatures around to block. Additionally this is a cheap artifact to tap for improvise costs. All in all, it's a very disruptive, very playable card.

Renegade Map

$ 0.00$ 0.00

C+

Renegade Map is a cheap improvise enabler, a simple trigger for revolt, and provides a mana fixer. I'm not sure how it will measure up to Prophetic Prism in triple Kaladesh, but my guess is that they'll be pretty comparable.

Untethered Express

$ 0.00 $ 0.00

B+

At the very affordable crew cost of 1, Untethered Express is pretty close to a colorless Peema Outrider with upside. It's a great early pick in draft since it doesn't commit you to a particular color, and it will be strong in most midrange creature battles.

Conclusion

Aether Revolt is proving more innovative than I would have expected, and I'm glad they're not just copying more of Kaladesh. What's your favorite card so far? Please join me for more spoilers and more Limited review tomorrow. Reach out to me on Twitter @JakeStilesMTG or in the comments below with your thoughts on the new cards.


More on MTGGoldfish ...

aether revolt

Aether Revolt Spoilers: Limited Review for January 2

instant deck tech

Instant Deck Tech: Tezzeret Karn Combo (Pioneer)

fish five-o

Fish Five-0: Esper Control (Standard, Magic Arena)

instant deck tech

Instant Deck Tech: Izzet Mirror (Standard)


Next Article