I’ve always been a fan of ETB (Enter the Battlefield) effects.
Ok…really I’m a fan of anything Magic but being able to get additional value from your spells just by playing them can lead to many different lines of play as well as some very fun and unique decks. These passive effects can make certain decks extremely powerful (ie. Gray Merchant of Asphodel) and in certain games can slowly take over the game if left unchecked (ie. Courser of Kruphix).
Constellation is a new mechanic that is coming in from Journey Into Nyx. It is an ETB effect that triggers whenever the card with Constellation, or any other enchantment, enters the battlefield under your control.
My oh my will I have fun with these cards. Enchantments are right up my alley, and I’m a big supporter of Bestow/Enchantment creatures. I’m a big fan of enchantments in general. Doesn’t matter if they’re auras, creatures, or just a basic Enchantment. They’re permanents that affect the board state in a unique way and Constellation enhances that ability. The gears are already turning in my head and there are many different possible decks that can be made. I haven’t been around long but one thing I know for sure is, I love the challenge of brewing with underused cards or effects. While many people are looking at the JIN cards and trying to improve the current meta, I enjoy working towards newer decks and strategies. You never know what could end up working and mechanics such as Constellation are things that are have a good chance of flying under people’s radars.
One card specifically that I’m excited for is Underworld Coinsmith. I think this will be one of the main Constellation cards being played and it makes sense, especially with the new God Athreos, God of Passage. Underworld Coinsmith adds two devotion to him, is a human (for Xathrid Necromancer), and has an ability to help close out games if it comes down to it.
Incremental life gain is also powerful in decks that play longer games. Seeing Courser of Kruphix in action, it’s not uncommon for it to gain the player 4-5+ life in a game. That is a lot of life when playing against decks such as Boros Burn, or any heavy Aggro deck. Of course Courser’s ability is much easier to trigger but that doesn’t mean Coinsmith isn’t able to do the same.
The activated ability that comes with Underworld Coinsmith is what I’m interested in playing with. Something that I hate seeing with decks that end up playing longer games is, unless you’re playing some sort of card draw you have the potential to flood out without playing any relevant spells for a couple/few turns. Abilities that don’t involve tapping a permanent are nice to use as a mana dump and Coinsmith’s can help close games out. Since the life total is being used here, there will definitely be some skill involved being able to manage the resource properly with this card.
That being said, Underworld Coinsmith is definitely not a meta breaker, nor it is a card people should make the main point of focus in their deck. But, it’s a card that can give your deck a different angle of attack and give advantage over the course of the game, similar to Courser of Kruphix.
The biggest problem I see with Underworld Coinsmith is that he requires other enchantments to make use out of his Constellation. In addition, if you actually are playing enough spells you won’t have enough mana to make use out of his activated ability, turning him into a 2/2 that doesn’t do anything. However, since Theros block is filled out now, I think believe there are enough relevant enchantments and enchantment creatures to make use out of him.
Here’s a deck that I whipped up to include Mr. Coinsmith:
Enchanted Junk by Michael Yee
You’re probably thinking,
“Michael. What in the hell is this?”
Good question. Check out my deck tech below for detailed explanations on my card choices and what the deck is all about:
Hope you guys enjoyed the article and the deck. Feel free to let me know if there are any other interesting things from Journey Into Nyx that you’d like me to discuss or any suggestions for the deck!
– Michael Y.