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By: stsung, Jaroslav Stefanek
Jul 24 2018 12:00pm
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Wizards of the Coast sent us another free preview card. This is a Commander 2018 preview so after a little bit of history we'll be talking about Commander. So let me show you the card!

Eidolon of Blossoms is a card that was originally printed in Theros block and actually saw a competitive play in Standard in BG Constellation deck. The card is very interesting in many ways.

First, it is an Enchantment Creature which is rare combination of types. The very first Enchantment Creature - Lucent Liminid - was printed in Future Sight, a set which featured timeshifted cards that were either from the Magic's past or even Magic's future. This one hinted at Enchantment Creatures existing in a future set. Seven years later, they appeared in Theros block. They have a special card frame known as a Nyx card frame that features shiny stars. It comes from the Theros lore where Xenagos began a series of mystical rituals that made Nyx, the world of gods, and the mortal world to blend and that resulted in creatures from Nyx appearing in the mortal world. Since Nyx is a starfield (the night sky), the frame reflects that and I'm glad that the reprints still keep the frame as well.

Second, the creature has an Constellation ability that reads 'Whenever Eidolon of Blossoms or another enchantment enters the battlefield under your control, draw a card.' There are creatures with comes into play effect that draws a card but enchantments triggering the ability to draw a card is way more rare. It's one of the oldest 'abilities' out there though. Most of us refer to this ability as an Enchantress ability and it appeared for the first time at the very beginning of Magic's history. The card that bore the ability was Verduran Enchantress. It was a 0/2 green creature with the creature type Enchantress and with the Enchantress ability 'Whenever you cast an enchantment spell, draw a card'.

There were three creatures in the history of Magic with the Enchantress creature type (Verduran, Femeref and Argothian Enchantress). This creature type was changed to Human Druid later (Satyr Enchanter - the newest printed Enchantress - is Satyr not Human so Enchantresses will be a Druid but not necessarily a Human).

Verduran Enchantress along with Argothian Enchantress and Yavimaya Enchantress made it into an Extended deck that used the Argothian and Verduran Enchantresses to draw cards and Yavimaya Enchantress (or any other creature that could be enchanted with Ancestral Mask) to win the game. This deck was build around Survival of the Fittest that allowed to find any creature when needed with Masticore being the win condition and Squee, Goblin Nabob being the card to be discarded to Survival of the Fittest and later Masticore's ability (Survival of the Fittest was banned, so this deck slowly turned into a combo-control with Words enchantments (Words of Wilding and Words of Wind later).

Argothian Enchantress is most probably the best known Enchantress. It is a 2 mana 0/1 creature that has Shroud and the Enchantress ability (Whenever you cast an enchantment spell, draw a card.) Argothian Enchantress and Enchantress's Presence are cards that create a draw engine in a Legacy combo-control deck we, not surprisingly, call Enchantress. The idea is to gain card advantage by playing enchantment spells when one of the Enchantress effects is around. Enchantress players can control the game thanks to enchantments like Solitary Confinement, Elephant Grass or Moat. The deck wins by either casting one-of Emrakul, the Aeons Torn (the deck can generate a lot of mana thanks to Serra's Sanctum and enchantment cards like Utopia Sprawl, Wild Growth etc.) or creating Angel tokens thanks to Sigil of the Empty Throne.

Eidolon of Blossoms in Commander

The first part of this article has already given clues about how Eidolon of Blossoms can be used in Commander. Enchantment decks are good as a combo-control, stax or voltron. The decks running this Eidolon will be running a high amount of enchantment spells and other Enchantress effects as their draw engine. Enchantress ability started as a green one but later was turned into a white one. Eidolon of Blossoms will be a part of a draw engine that will feature Enchantress cards be it Mesa Enchantress, Argothian Enchantress or Enchantress's Presence. The Eidolon is the most expensive card mana wise but it also draws a card when it enters play itself which is something other Enchantress cards do not do. Being a 2/2 creature has pros and cons. It has the best body among the old Enchantresses (Satyr Enchanter printed in M19 is also a 2/2 Enchantress) so it can attack and it can even be enchanted with Auras (Argothian Enchantress cannot since it has Shroud). The disadvantage is that it dies more easily because it is in general easier to get rid of creatures than enchantments (and is also affected by cards dealing with enchantments).

The enchantments in the decks can be divided in groups by their function. Most of the time, there will be cheap ones that generate more mana (Wild Growth, Utopia Sprawl). There is actually plenty of white or green removal in the form of an enchantment (Quarantine Field, Oblivion Ring, Song of the Dryads, Lignify). Voltron decks will play many Auras like Rancor, Ethereal Armor or Ancestral Mask. Some deck will play more control or prison cards like Aura of Silence, Karmic Justice, Sphere of Safety, City of Solitude or Solitary Confinement). There are also many enchantments that can win the game like already mentioned Sigil of the Empty Throne, Sandwurm Convergence, Opalescence, Starfield of Nyx but it can also be Assemble the Legion or Luminarch Ascension.

It is clear that the base for a deck running Eidolon of Blossoms will be green and white at least. In these colors we have Karametra, God of Harvests from Born of the Gods. This general itself is Enchantment Creature and is on theme with the Eidolon. It is a god coming from Nyx and this deck wants to play the Nyxborn (the enchantment creatures that were born in the mortal world) because they trigger both Karametra's ability (Whenever you cast a creature spell, you may search your library for a Forest or Plains card, put it onto the battlefield tapped, then shuffle your library.) and Enchantress ability. Karametra gives freedom about what we want to do with our decks as long as we play creatures and enchantments. Common win conditions are gods (Heliod, God of the Sun, Karametra, Nylea, God of the Hunt), enchantments like Sigil of the Empty Throne or Sandwurm Convergence, or Opalescence which can animate the whole board (just enchantments to be more precise)!

Another interesting general is Sigarda, Host of Herons. Sigarda is one of the best Voltron generals (Voltron decks' goal is to cast a creature, in this case the general, enhance it with equipment or enchantments and win the game with it - deal 21 damage). The creature has Flying and Hexproof which makes it difficult to get rid of it and it can't even die to effects like Diabolic Edict. Since auras are also enchantments they trigger the Enchantress ability.

We can gain access to other colors if we use different generals. There is Uril, the Miststalker which is a very popular general. It adds red and is a solid Voltron general. Not only it has Hexproof but it also gets bigger with each Aura attached to it. Red is not the most exciting color to add when it comes to enchantments but it allows a Voltron player to include cards like Temur Battle Rage, Boros Charm, or Xenagos, God of Revels which are good cards for one turn kills. Red enchantments are meant for aggressive creature decks and are often not that suited for a Voltron deck in general. Madcap Skills is a very good card though, Scourge of the Nobilis gives lifelink which can sometimes be relevant, Messenger's Speed gives Trample, to name a few.

Rafiq of the Many is a general that is used from casual to competitive EDH. It is a Voltron general because of its Double Strike giving ability with which Exalted works very nicely. Rafiq Voltron decks have many flavors (Infect, Exalted, equipments) and one of them can be enchantments. Blue is a very good support color for protection and control (any kind of counterspells, Cyclonic Rift, Supreme Verdict. In a Voltron deck it can also gives possibilities of evasion (Steel of the Godhead, Thassa, God of the Sea, Aqueous Form, Cartouche of Knowledge), which Rafiq doesn't have, and even more card advantage or filtering.

For more controlling decks one can opt to run black. Since we are looking for decks where we would still be playing green Enchantresses I'd recommend trying Pharika, God of Affliction or Ghave, Guru of Spores. Ghave can be broken in many ways and running enchantments is one of them. These generals share more themes than just enchantments. Both of these decks can generate value from graveyard and can also work as aristocrat decks. Each of these decks can generate tokens, sacrifice those and gain value (opponent sacrificing creatures to Grave Pact, you gaining mana from Black Market, recurring stuff Deadbridge Chant) or win the game by letting the opponent lose life (and you gaining life in the process). There are life draining enchantments like Grim Guardian or Palace Siege and enchantments that just deal damage or make opponents lose life Pestilence, Fate Unraveler.

Eidolon of Blossoms is a very unique card because it is one of the few Enchantment Creatures that exist, it draws a card when it comes into play, and it has a 2/2 body which makes it fine to attack sometimes. The card on its own is not powerful but when it finds home in a highly synergic Enchantress deck it does wonders. Playing enchantments does not limit us to just one archetype but we can actually choose what we want to do be it voltron, combo or control, value-based deck, prison or even aristocrats. Eidolon of Blossoms will be part of the draw engine in these decks. These decks' colors can range from 2 color to 5 color. The most common combinations will be green-white based splashing either blue, red or black but black-green based decks are also a possibility and will be more value oriented while the white based decks will be more of a combo or control decks.

Thank you for reading
S'Tsung (follow me @stsungjp on Twitter)

4 Comments

There was a miscommunication by JXClaytor at Tue, 07/24/2018 - 12:23
JXClaytor's picture

There was a miscommunication today, Eidolon of Blossoms was spoiled a day early and is part of the bant enchantments deck.

re by Hearts at Tue, 07/24/2018 - 14:59
Hearts's picture

The older the cards are the more sense they make, the newer ones are complete dribble often.

Wotc will make an artifact instant within 4 years, whats the point of that ?

Great article. I wouldn't by Paul Leicht at Tue, 07/24/2018 - 15:34
Paul Leicht's picture
5

Great article. I wouldn't call Eidolon a great card but it certainly brings a certain archetype to life. And you describe that archetype beautifully. Nice bit of back history to go with it.

Thank you. by stsung at Tue, 07/31/2018 - 09:45
stsung's picture

Thank you.