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Best Kamigawa: Neon Dynasty Commander Cards – Gold/Artifact/Land

Welcome back to my look at the best Kamigawa: Neon Dynasty Commander cards. I’ll be continuing on my analysis color-by-color as usual, and this time I’ll be looking at the highlights in multicolor, artifacts and lands.

Check out the other colors here:

White / Blue / Black / Red / Green / Gold, Artifacts and Lands

 

 

Header - Multicolor

Asari Captain

Asari Captain

If the Samurai/Warrior deck is going to go over the top, it’ll be on the back of effects like this that encourage you to have those creature types en masse. That said, I’m not super hopeful for this.

Colossal Skyturtle

Colossal Skyturtle

This is an uncommon? Wow. This reads like a rare to me, and years ago, it probably would have been. At seven mana, you’re getting a decent body, but as you might expect, the value is in the flexibility. You can bounce a key attacker to stop an opponent from snowballing an advantage or even regrow the exact card you need from your graveyard – this looks like a powerhouse to me, and if you’re the Simic Value player in your group, this Turtle is worth a tryout.

Eiganjo Uprising

Eiganjo Uprising

Token doublers like Anointed Procession make the already complex math on this card even wackier, as do effects like Cathars’ Crusade that grow these creatures when they enter the battlefield. The other good use case here is with cards like Terror of the Peaks that key off creatures entering the battlefield on your side. Unless you have some reason to fill other players’ boards with tokens, you probably want to be doing one of those things along with this card so that you’re alpha striking for victory. Even absent those options, this card is sometimes going to get you over the top against at least one opponent. My very silly idea is to combine this, an anthem effect and Aether Flash, but you could just play Mana Echoes and turn this into a weird ritual. 

Enthusiastic Mechanaut

Enthusiastic Mechanaut

We already have Etherium Sculptor and other similar friends, but more is better. Plus, the flavor text here is hilarious.

Gloomshrieker

Gloomshrieker

Eternal Witness for permanents only that exiles itself if it would die. Deeply fair, mildly disappointing, will see occasional play.

Greasefang, Okiba Boss

Greasefang, Okiba Boss

Okay, yes, rat biker gang deck is actually happening. We get the special Pilots from this set, cards like Ovalchase Daredevil from Kaladesh, and the ability to send our Vehicles in with some level of security that they will come back after they break down. Do note that, while Greasefang gives the returning Vehicles haste, she does not automatically crew them, so you’ll have to use her or one of your other creatures to turn the keys. That said, given that she’s likely to still be on the battlefield after her trigger resolves, it shouldn’t be too hard to manage that.

Hidetsugu Consumes All

This does a whole lot of nothing to the board (except blowing up some tokens and a few permanents) before transforming and then starts very small, asking you to do a lot of work before you actually get anything good out of it. On power level, this is a no, but in terms of fun factor and creeping despair if you actually can build an engine around it, it’s an absolute yes.

Hinata, Dawn-Crowned

Hinata, Dawn-Crowned

It’s Comet Storm’s new best friend! I don’t think this is going to be a huge powerhouse, but I do think there’s a fun theme deck to be built here, and by golly, I plan to at least put a deck list together. I do think the tax ability is a little annoying as it’s quite likely to get forgotten from time to time – almost as annoying as figuring out the right Scryfall search syntax for cards with multiple targets, anyway.

Invigorating Hot Springs

Invigorating Hot Spring

Things I love about this card: it’s an enchantment with +1/+1 counters on it, it hands out counters that happen to also give haste and it has a fun yeti on it. I think that’s a yeti, anyway. Regardless, this is a fun little Fires of Yavimaya for decks that care about modified or just about counters in general, and I expect it to be a fun Commander card and a pretty sweet build-around Limited uncommon.

Isshin, Two Heavens as One

Isshin, Two Heavens as One

We saw a version of this effect recently with Wulfgar, but Isshin doesn’t care whose creatures are triggering things! Hissing Miasma and friends are obvious choices here, but I don’t find those effects as fun these days as I once did. I’d be more excited about trying out cards like Righteous Cause and Search the Premises, but if your group likes Revenge of Ravens, do your thing. Of course, there are plenty of creatures that trigger themselves or each other on attack, but I wanted to focus on the non-obvious here.

Jukai Naturalist

Jukai Naturalist

A solid option for Selesnya-based enchantment decks, and I’m sure that Satsuki, the Living Lore will love this one.

Kaito Shizuki

Kaito Shizuki

The defensive ability on Kaito doesn’t quite guarantee two activations, but it works as long as Kaito survives for the rest of your turn, which is good enough for me. For three mana, making an unblockable Ninja and then drawing a card is a fine baseline, making this an easy inclusion in any Ninja deck.

The Kami War

It’s unfortunate this can’t be your commander. That said, if you want a deck that thematically tells the story of Kamigawa, consider asking your group if they’d mind a little rule-bending! Setting that aside, the upfront cost is pretty serious if this gets disrupted, making this another fun-forward card. If you do manage to turn this into O-Kagachi Made Manifest, you have a serious threat that gives you even more fuel to finish the game out, albeit fuel of the defending player’s choice. It seems less powerful than I’d like given how much work/time it will take to transform it, but it’s okay for the card to just be fun, right?

Kotose, the Silent Spider

Kotose, the Silent Spider

The Extirpate part of this card isn’t particularly relevant in Commander, but exiling a key card and getting to be the one to play it later, even if Kotose isn’t around anymore, is pretty interesting. You can play this as your commander and find ways to bounce or sacrifice it if you’re looking for a reliable engine to play other peoples’ cards, but if you’re still primarily using Spelltable, that’s probably something to wait on until you feel good about in-person play again. It’s notable that this is a Ninja without ninjutsu or any kind of ability that cares about attacking or dealing combat damage!

Naomi, Pillar of Order

Naomi, Pillar of Order

I love seeing uncommon legendaries, especially since the original Kamigawa thrived on that paradigm. Naomi looks like a fun commander if you’re looking to build up incremental advantage, and at five mana, you should have time to set up the artifact and enchantment synergy in advance. I don’t think this is an incredibly powerful card, but it’s pretty cool.

Oni-Cult Anvil

Oni-Cult Anvil

This card looked good to me until I dug into all of the restrictions. Between triggering only on your own turn and only once each turn, I’ve been pretty well turned off this as a sacrifice enabler.

Prodigy’s Prototype

Prodigy's Prototype

Ooh, I love this. A Vehicle that generates more Pilots, especially these specially qualified Pilot tokens, is a no-brainer in any Azorius Vehicles deck, so it’s no surprise that this is featured in the Power Up preconstructed deck featuring Kotori, Pilot Prodigy. Thematically, I suppose it’s also Kotori’s prototype. 

Raiyuu, Storm’s Edge

Raiyuu, Storm's Edge

Here’s the payoff for all that Samurai/Warrior single attacker stuff! It’s an extra combat step, which seems to be one of the favorite Boros payoffs. At just four mana, this is a pretty good deal if you’re looking to play this out of the command zone and start beating down early, and I might give it a shot in Wyleth, where it plays well with my commander while also being a solid candidate for equipping as well. Haktos is another fun pairing with this card.

Risona, Asari Commander

Risona, Asari Commander

I love the flavor on this card! When the battle is going Risona’s way, she feels indestructible… because she is. When it’s not going her way, she becomes mortal once again! This looks like a fun monarch-focused Commander – instead of sitting on the throne and laughing like Queen Marchesa (long may she reign), you’re encouraged to attack and will likely end up handing the monarch token around turn after turn. 

Satoru Umezawa

Satoru Umezawa

I talked about Satoru at length in my Commander newsletter, but the most obvious way to play this is to use the usual Ninja core of cheap evasive creatures alongside heavy hitters like Mindleech Mass or Shadowgrange Archfiend that have powerful on-hit or enters the battlefield abilities. It’s also important to make sure your deck works when Satoru isn’t in play, so be sure to play cards that reward you for sneaking in some damage as well as, potentially, some of the more ordinary cards with ninjutsu.

Satsuki, the Living Lore

Satsuki, the Living Lore

We’ve got a pretty obvious Saga commander here! Right now, there are 23 Sagas in this color combination, and not all of them are terribly good. I actually think some of the older Sagas are better candidates for this deck than the newer ones, as they go to the graveyard faster to be brought back, replayed, and accelerated once again. This deck’s best plays are likely to be rooted in some combination of History of Benalia and Song of Freyalise, and my instinct is that it will be a bit disappointing. That said, there’s no telling until I’ve seen it played!

Silver-Fur Master

Silver-Fur Master

The +1/+1 is nice and all, but I think the cost reduction on ninjutsu abilities is the real winner here. Cost reduction effects like this look innocuous, but the best turns often come from doing two or three things in a single turn, and the more cost reduction effects you have, the more often you can do that and the more powerful things you can do at once.

Spirit-Sister’s Call

Spirit-Sister's Call

This card is wild and looks like a lot of fun. You’ll want permanents with dies effects or small fodder permanents to turn into the more powerful cards in your graveyard, but keep in mind the restriction on the things you bring back – they’ll go to exile if they try to leave the battlefield in any way. This isn’t a value-fest on the level of Debtors’ Knell, but that’s why it only costs five mana.

Tamiyo, Compleated Sage

Tamiyo, Compleated Sage

Will Compleated be a one-off for Tamiyo that just provides flavor, or is this keyword going to stick around for multiple sets? Only time will tell, but my guess is that we’ll see it again. Tamiyo can defend herself with either her +1 or her -X, but neither is likely to be great at defending her against wide boards. It’s a bit awkward that Tamiyo’s Notebook can just be disenchanted, but this whole card is fun and risky, so why not lean into that, I suppose?

 

Containment Construct

Containment Construct

Is this two-mana 2/1 the most powerful card in the set? Maybe! If you’re playing a Gavi, Nest Warden deck or other cycling strategy, this has some obvious applications, and it’s also pretty easy to blast off with a Wheel effect in a deck like Rielle, the Everwise (or even without Rielle.) Any deck with a discard outlet can just pretend all of their cards have madness. Chandra, Flamecaller’s 0 gets better with this, as do all of your channel cards… the possibilities are nearly endless.

Eater of Virtue

Eater of Virtue

Another huge flavor win. This sword absorbs the power of its former wielders in the form of keyword abilities, making it interesting in decks that want to go all over the place with combat keywords. There is a bit of anti-synergy here, as cards like Kathril want these creatures in the graveyard, but Odric, Lunarch Marshal and Odric, Blood-Cursed may be interested, as might Akroma, Vision of Ixidor. It may not be a huge powerhouse, but Eater of Virtue is really cool.

Mechtitan Core

Mechtitan Core

Forget Voltron, it’s time for the Megazord! Vehicle decks as well as decks with enough artifact creatures have the opportunity to create a really entertaining token, and when that token leaves the battlefield under any circumstances, you get most of your cards back. Sure, the Core stays exiled and the cards come back tapped, but if they have enters-the-battlefield abilities, that gets even more fun. This set has a ton of Commander cards that are in the classic “fun, not oppressive” mold, and the more of those I see out of a set, the happier I am.

Mirror Box

Mirror Box

This has some niche applications, like allowing you to have token copies of legendary creatures for fun and profit or getting you some huge Shadowborn Apostles, but overall I doubt this will show up much. When you do see it, though, be scared, because enormous shenanigans are afoot.

 

Header - Lands

Boseiju, Who Endures

Boseiju, Who Endures

I’d count this as half a land in my decks, much like Bala Ged Recovery, but I’ll also be playing it in a ton of green decks because, let’s face it, it’s really powerful. I expect it to be desirable outside of Commander as well, so don’t be surprised if it continues to hold some serious value. I don’t mind the Ghost Quarter downside that applies, even when I’m using it to destroy an artifact or enchantment, because the flexibility here is so huge. This land doesn’t even enter untapped!

Mech Hangar

Mech Hangar

This looks mediocre even for Vehicles decks until you get to the last line. Spend mana to crew, you say? Sign me up! Get me in that mech!

Otawara, Soaring City

Otawara, Soaring City

While this isn’t as much of an obvious gimme as Boseiju, it’s still pretty free, and being able to bounce it to your hand and then channel it later in the game to mess up a combo or ruin combat is pretty appealing.

Secluded Courtyard

Secluded Courtyard

What we have here is a slightly upgraded version of Unclaimed Territory. Don’t go replacing all of your Unclaimed Territories, though – if you want one, you probably want both.

Sokenzan, Crucible of Defiance

Sokenzan, Crucible of Defiance

I like this in Equipment-focused decks that want to augment their land base with cards that help sneakily up the creature count.

Takenuma, Abandoned Mire

Takenuma, Abandoned Mire

Most of these legendary lands with channel are pretty good with Life from the Loam, but Takenuma is the most egregious in my opinion. If you’re doing Loam shenanigans in a Golgari deck, Takenuma looks like a great way to churn through your deck, get some powerful cards in your hand, and set up a longer series of graveyard synergies.

 

That’s it for the main set – tune in next time for my thoughts on the Commander exclusives!

 

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