For many years, Wrath of God set the standard when it came to wraths and Counterspell when it came to counters. It’s even in the names of the effect—these two cards set the precedent. Everyone knew the rates: you could pay 4 mana to sweep the board, and 2 mana to counter a spell. Eventually, Counterspell became Mana Leak, and Wrath became Day of Judgment, but things were essentially the same. Later, those effects were deemed too good, and we soon saw a world of 5-mana wraths and 3-mana counters.
But today we go back in time, to when wraths cost 4, even if those 4 mana come with very specific requirements. Let’s take a look at Kaya’s Wrath, our preview card from Wizards of the Coast (even the name of the card is a callback):
Paying 4 mana to kill everything, no questions asked, is a great deal. The double-double mana cost does restrict this to pretty dedicated Orzhov decks (or three-color decks that have a very heavy WB component), but it still gets the job done effectively. It even has a bit of upside, as it can gain you a couple life if you have any creatures lying around. That’s clearly a nod to the Orzhov mechanic, afterlife, and makes a ton of flavor sense. If killing everyone is profitable, you bet the Orzhov will do it.
The first place I’d look to run this is Esper, as the addition of Godless Shrine and Hallowed Fountain makes the mana pretty good, and Wrath into Teferi on curve is quite appealing. There’s probably also going to be a WB control deck worth mentioning, though I wouldn’t be surprised if this snuck its way into midrange too. Wraths plus removal plus planeswalkers can work well with efficient creatures, especially if those creatures provide value when they die.
Regardless of how this gets used, it will get used. Kaya’s Wrath is a game-changer, and like the Ghost Council, creatures that oppose you won’t stand a ghost of a chance.