June 17, 2019

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Daily Dose of Core Set 2020 #1 – Everyone gets a Chandra!

Welcome back to a brand-new season of the Daily Dose! This time around all eye's are on Core Set 2020 where the focus of the storyline seems to be centred around Chandra. In Standard, we already have a few Chandra cards like Chandra, Fire Artisan that can help you gain some card advantage. There is even Chandra’s Triumph that deals 3 damage to a creature or planeswalker, but improves to 5 damage if you have a Chandra planeswalker on the battlefield. The odds of this happening are going to start to increase thanks to what’s coming up in Core Set 2020. Since Chandra is right in the centre of the storyline, they have put in not 1, not 2, but 3 Chandra planeswalkers into Core Set 2020. Thanks to War of the Spark we have seen planeswalkers at all sorts of rarities. This allows 3 Chandra’s to be in the same set at 3 different rarities.

I want to start off by talking about the Uncommon planeswalker for Chandra. Here is Chandra, Novice Pyromancer.

This is the first time we have seen an Uncommon planeswalker with 3 abilities including a plus loyalty ability. Let’s break down what this 5 loyalty planeswalker can do.

[+1]: Elementals you control get +2/+0 until end of turn. – This ability might seem a bit odd and narrow, but being a plus ability on an uncommon planeswalker is huge. When we get to Rare Chandra, this ability improves mightily. Without that though, let’s see what some of the best Elementals are in Standard for Red. Using Lightning Mare can give you a 5/1 attacking creature for only two mana. Using this with Living Twister gives you a beefy 4/5 creature. Finally, the great Runaway Steam-Kin can be powered up with this ability.

[-1]: Add RR. – Sometimes this can be used in the same turn that you cast Chandra, Novice Pyromancer so that you can play a second spell in the same turn. This ability can be used in future turns to make sure you can cast a larger spell, like perhaps the Mythic Chandra from this set.

[-2]: Chandra, Novice Pyromancer deals 2 damage to any target. – This is the same ability as Jaya, Venerated Firemage and this planeswalker only costs 4 mana to cast. It also can go up in loyalty which means you could end up with more than 2 activations if needed.

The next logical step is to investigate the sweet new Rare Chandra: here is [c]Chandra, Acolyte of Flame.

[0]: Put a loyalty counter on each red planeswalker you control. – This is basically a +1 loyalty ability that does nothing without the assistance of some other Red planeswalkers. There are plenty of strong planeswalkers that would benefit from the bonus loyalty though. This can help Chandra, Fire Artisan get to its ultimate ability one turn earlier. Nicol Bolas, Dragon-God can get to its ultimate in two less turns. It also allows Sarkhan, the Masterless to more easily create additional 4/4 Dragon tokens.

[0]: Create two 1/1 red Elemental creature tokens. They gain haste. Sacrifice them at the beginning of the next end step. – Now you see how the +1 ability from Chandra, Novice Pyromancer gets better when they are both in play. Being able to attack with two 3/1 Elemental tokens is much better. Having multiple creatures die each turn, goes well with cards like Cruel Celebrant, Elenda, the Dusk Rose, and Liliana, Dreadhorde General.

[-2]: You may cast target instant or sorcery card with converted mana cost 3 or less from your graveyard. If that would be put into your graveyard this turn, exile it instead. – Being able to give pretty much all your red instants or sorceries flashback will allow you to reuse some powerful spells.

Finally, we are on to the Mythic Chandra, and this is a good one. Here is Chandra, Awakened Inferno.

This spell can't be countered. – This is huge. Being able to sneak this past control decks and get a powerful planeswalker onto the battlefield should not be overlooked. This can work well in a Grixis Control deck.

[+2]: Each opponent gets an emblem with "At the beginning of your upkeep, this emblem deals 1 damage to you." – Having 8 starting loyalty thanks to this ability will make this hard to kill without direct removal. Being able to put numerous clocks on your opponent will make them have to deal with Chandra, Awakened Inferno as soon as possible.

[-3]: Chandra Awakened Inferno deals 3 damage to each non-Elemental creature. – Once again, all the Elementals play a part by surviving this Sweltering Suns type effect. This is a great way to clear the battlefield and perhaps even have it be a one-sided blowout.

[-X]: Chandra Awakened Inferno deals X damage to target creature or planeswalker. If a permanent dealt damage this way would die this turn, exile it instead. – This allows you to deal with one larger threat on the battlefield or one smaller threat where you don’t need to deal 3 damage to it to kill it. The bonus of it being exiled will come into play occasionally.

There you have it folks! In Core Set 2020 you get to play with 3 different Chandras! This is going to be a sweet new set and I can’t wait to see what comes next! Thanks for starting off the Daily Dose journey with me today and join me each weekday in the coming weeks for more Core Set 2020 action!