Last updated on January 25, 2023
Urza, Planeswalker | Illustration by Ryan Pancoast
Hello, fellow planeswalkers! Who's ready for another MTG release? I know it can be overwhelming sometimes with the number of new releases and new hype, but it’s worthwhile to look at the new exciting planeswalkers in The Brothers’ War. Planeswalkers are the lifeblood of many competitive builds and will always influence all formats.
So what can these planeswalkers do for you? Which formats will they excel in? What builds are going to support them? Will Urza and Mishra ever make amends?
Let’s rip through these burning questions and find out!
Teferi, Temporal Pilgrim (The Brothers’ War) | Illustration by Magali Villeneuve
There are three planeswalkers in The Brothers’ War: we have the artifact-lovers Saheeli and Urza, as well as the time cop Teferi.
These are new iterations of three well-known planeswalkers in MTG. They take on some of the aspects that are common to their names, and some new loyalty abilities. They all have different values in different formats, so I’ll be ranking them based on how I see their ability to be played in many as well as specific formats.
If you’re like me then you had to look up what the heck a filigree is. For all you non-word nerds, a filigree is ornamental work of fine wire. This description fits well with Saheeli, Filigree Master and its artifact-centric loyalty abilities.
Filigree Master is an instant addition to some artifact decks in Modern and Commander, and easy to build around with the artifacts in Limited play. This planeswalker has a reasonable mana value and some big payoffs for smart and focused deck construction.
I like the number of good artifacts in The Brothers’ War and Modern/Historic, so I see Saheeli, Filigree Master as a very valuable and playable planeswalker. I believe it’s much better than Urza, Planeswalker in Limited, but not in the Constructed formats.
So let’s take a look at what these artifact-centric loyalty abilities can do for you. The +1 ability gives you a scry ability to burn through unhelpful cards, as well as the ability to draw. Tapping an untapped artifact is not difficult at all with Treasure tokens, static artifacts, equipment like Transmogrant's Crown, and the tokens you can create from the -2 ability.
I also like that Saheeli starts with three loyalty points and the “final” ability is only -4, which gives you an emblem to pump and reduce the cost of all your artifact spells. This is a fantastic and versatile loyalty ability that’s not difficult to get to. It can support artifact decks in tons of formats that go wide, need to reduce the cost of massive bomb artifacts, or need the support for midrange plays.
So… it’s going to take some work to get Urza, Planeswalker on the board. You have to own and control Urza, Lord Protector and The Mightstone and the Weakstone and then pay seven mana at sorcery speed to exile and meld the cards into Urza, Planeswalker.
Urza ranks in the middle of these rankings because of its high requirements before resolving and very low chance of happening in Limited. But the static and loyalty abilities are worth it in Constructed formats. This planeswalker should be able to give the Constructed artifact builders a nice control and a bomb end loyalty ability.
Urza, Planeswalker has almost every type of loyalty ability you could want, and the static ability allows you to use two on each of your turns. The +1 and +2 loyalty abilities give you mana or hand advantages by reducing costs or drawing cards. The 0 and -3 abilities help with board presence by making artifact tokens or exiling target nonland permanent.
But the final loyalty ability is what makes this Urza valuable. You give your artifacts and planeswalkers indestructible and then destroy everything else on the board. With some constructed help you can go from the starting seven loyalty points to the final 10 relatively easily, and then remove your opponent’s entire board in one fell swoop.
“Temporal Pilgrim” is the best name for the Teferi planeswalker I’ve seen so far, no question. Teferi, Temporal Pilgrim can easily be the focal point of so many builds in Limited and Constructed.
The static ability to gain loyalty points for every card you draw is insane! You get at least one loyalty point every turn before you even make decisions about what to cast or which loyalty abilities you want to use. This static ability alone makes Teferi one of the best planeswalkers in Standard right now, and the best planeswalker in The Brothers’ War.
I mean, blue and card draw, right?
If the static ability doesn’t draw you in, let’s take a look at the loyalty abilities. For +1 you can draw a card if you need the hand advantage. This is great to set up those big plays in blue control decks and could give a massive advantage in Limited formats. The -2 ability is what’s going to put the Temporal Pilgrim into so many decks. With the loyalty pump of drawing cards you have the potential to make the Spirit token every turn. Your army of tokens will grow with every card you draw and your opponent will quickly be overwhelmed if Teferi isn’t removed early.
The final ability is a good way to gain the board advantage for a heavy price of -12. This could be the bomb move you need to win, but I think that the Spirit token creation is what will win you more games.
Saheeli, Filigree Master (The Brothers’ War) | Illustration by Aurore Folny
I don’t know about you, but I’m ready to get to war! There’s always a kind of hype around each new set and the characters it brings us.
No characters are more important to the story, and sometimes new meta-trends, than the planeswalkers. We didn’t get a storm of planeswalkers likewith War of the Spark, or any new characters. But these three planeswalkers should be fun to play with and might even make it into your Limited or Constructed decks.
What do you think of these new planeswalkers? Are you excited to try to meld Urza, or is Teferi’s time nonsense more your style? Maybe you’re more into Saheeli’s artifact shenanigans? Let me know your thoughts in the comments below or join the discussion over in the Draftsim Discord.
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