July 16, 2020

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Dances With Azra Assassins

Battlebond has come and gone with most players remembering it for its Commander reprints and the land cycle it brought with it. Most players seem to forget about the Partner cards it brought with it outside of Toothy. Today, let’s talk about why you should be playing them in your ninety-nine (or ninety-eight).

For starters, most of the creatures start off at a reasonably high power level. But the added power of them comes from tutoring their other half out of your deck, granting you a potential follow up play, or just simply replacing the card spent from your hand. This is a similar reason (albeit much lower power level version) as to why players play Imperial Recruiter and similar effects. Normally those are used for a toolbox of creature selection but these directly tutor for a card that has some sort of effect that goes hand in hand with the other, elevating them both to a higher power level. Imperial Recruiter on its own is a mediocre creature, but the card it gets is where the power comes from. Remember, having more tutor effects in your deck is rarely a bad thing to have as it creates consistency in your deck from game to game. 

For an example of this, look no further than Gorm the Great and Virtus the Veiled. Two solid creatures that are made exponentially better by simply both being on the battlefield and can help serve other strategies that a deck can have going on. Gorm the Great is a huge asset to decks that want to get huge combat steps in with a single large creature going alongside Gorm, but these steps are just made better with the effect Virtus is about to offer by getting in a cheeky hit for half of the opponent’s life total. 

Each of the partner cards has unique effects with reasonable power levels when used in your deck. Oftentimes they’re just going to be highly suitable to supporting key strategies that your deck wishes to accomplish while also just being powerful cards, but these cards will often be best as support cards as opposed to key enablers. They aren’t necessarily better than your commander or going to win you the game on their own, but they will help your bigger cards do so without being “win more” additions to your deck. They’ll streamline your strategy while playing two cards for the cost of drawing one of them. 

Next time let’s go over a deck that uses the Partners as part of the deck as opposed to the Command Zone and see if we’re right here. Have you tried using them in the deck often? How did it work out for you? Leave a comment and let me know!