Combat Thresher is the Best Prototype MTG Card for Pioneer

Prototype is one of those mechanics that just tells you to do something broken with it. Beyond the simple kicker-style big-mode-little-mode split, there’s a promise. Get this card onto the battlefield evading the prototype casting cost, get a big payoff without dedicating an uncastable card to that job.

Which prototype creature is the best in that role?

Phyrexian Fleshgorger

Is it the first to be previewed, flashy mythic rare Phyrexian Fleshgorger? Maybe in Legacy where it’s fine to Reanimate and fine to cast against Leyline of the Void.

Arcane Proxy

Is it the Snapcaster Mage lookalike Arcane Proxy? Maybe in Modern, where Proxy can recast the null-costed suspend cards like Glimpse of Tomorrow.

Woodcaller Automaton

Is it the Jumpstart inclusion Woodcaller Automaton? Maybe if you’re all-in on Mono-Green Devotion.

Combat Thresher

For Pioneer, my money is on the easily overlooked Combat Thresher. What could make an innocuous uncommon more exciting than any of the other splashy prototypes I just mentioned?


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Combat Thresher is in the right spot at the right time. There are two easy ways to break the prototype mechanic: blink effects to exile the prototype mode of the creature and return it at full power, or reanimation effects to bring it back as printed. In both cases, the best versions of those cards in Pioneer line up with Combat Thresher.


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