Last updated on January 25, 2023
Angrath’s Rampage | Illustration by Victor Adame Minguez
Now Tolarian Terror has joined the meta, and boggles strategies have risen in popularity. Players have thus turned to unconventional removal spells to eliminate these seemingly unkillable creatures: edicts!
What’s an edict, you may be wondering? How can you take advantage of it? Let this be your official authority on all things edicts!
Wing Shards (Scourge) | Illustration by Daren Bader
The mechanic’s name is slang that comes from cards with an “edict” on them, which is wording that makes target players sacrifice a permanent. Diabolic Edict, for example, was first printed in 1997’s Tempest.
I’m not looking at effects that are worded as “each player sacrifices” for these rankings because that’s not what the most famous edict effects are known for.
This is the most popular white edict effect. Celestial Flare is somewhat the standard bearer for them.
Blessed Alliance’s versatility is good to have, and it’s one of the many effects that punish aggressive decks. It’s a perfect fit against decks like boggles that run creatures that can’t be targeted.
Dispense Justice is very similar to Celestial Flare without the double white mana restriction, but it costs one extra to cast. The catch is that you can get two creatures for the price of one if you meet the metalcraft requirements.
Entrapment Maneuver may look like an overpriced white edict effect. It seems more than an acceptable trade if you get rid of your opponent’s creature and create some of your own, though.
I don’t like Choice of Damnations. Six mana to make your opponent lose one life or sacrifice one permanent seems like a lot.
I kind of like Exile into Darkness in some narrow scenarios, but it’s a bit too mana pricey to see play.
You need two targets, and your opponents get to choose the one that’s less relevant to their game. Incriminate has to be one of the worst edict effects ever printed.
Grave Exchange is part expensive reanimation spell and part expensive edict effect. It’s probably one you should look to try if your deck can support it.
Outside of that there’s not much to say about this other version of Fleshbag Marauder.
I like that your opponent can pick their pain and that it’s repeated with Remorseless Punishment.
Self-Inflicted Wound is a specific hate card for decks that run green or white creatures, like boggles.
#19. Tergrid, God of Fright / Tergrid’s Lantern
The edict effect here is on Tergrid, God of Fright’s backside. It’s a repeatable effect that can be used multiple times in a turn with the right amount of mana.
I like versatile cards, and Extract the Truth is a fine choice if you want to stay open on an unknown field.
Delirium has been one of the best mechanics ever printed since you get discounted effects.
3-mana edict effects like Umbral Juke that can also be used to create a flying creature at instant speed is something I’d be interested in running in some decks.
Vindictive Lich is a creature that lets you choose two other effects on top of the edict when it dies. This is perfect for the multiplayer environment.
As its name states, Warren Weirding is a weird edict effect because it’s good against most the decks, except those that run goblins. On the other hand you can always run it in your goblin deck and sacrifice one to get another for the price of two mana.
Not the best of interactions, but it’s something that can come up once in a blue moon.
The first Sheoldred printed is an excellent commander for reanimation shell decks. Sheoldred, Whispering One also punishes your opponents by being an edict enabler with legs.
Monarch has proven to be a bit too much for some formats like Pauper, and it’s starting to see play in Legacy. Custodi Lich is a fine creature that acts like a one-sided Fleshbag Marauder most of the time.
Dead Drop can get rid of two creatures for just one mana in a dedicated deck.
Geth’s Verdict is one of the best edict effects I’ve seen. Even though it’s minimal, making your opponent lose life is huge in grindy games.
One thing that you may have noticed is that edict effects are mostly at sorcery speed. Devour Flesh is the exception because it can be cast at instant speed. The only drawback is that your opponent gains life, but you’re probably good unless they sacrifice an Eldrazi.
Liliana of the Veil has historically been one of the best planeswalkers. For our purposes it doesn’t pack just one edict effect, but two. Its main ability is a Chainer’s Edict, and its ultimate a Curse of the Cabal.
You also get to cast it again for its flashback cost later on.
Sudden Edict is by far the best instant edict. Your opponents can’t interact with it once it’s on the stack.
Misguided Rage is a simple and clean way to get rid of your opponent’s permanents… one by one.
Six mana to get rid of two permanents is a bad deal if you don’t have control over what’s sacrificed. On the other hand, Structural Collapse‘s life damage is a plus.
Demanding Dragon requires your opponents to pay the price of a creature unless they want to give up a chunk of their life.
#11. Far // Away
Far // Away can be a bounce or an edict effect depending on your board state.
I like Twisted Justice more than regular edict effects. You draw cards based on the creature’s power, but six mana is a bit too much.
#9. Dromoka’s Command
Dromoka’s Command is the only card with green on it that has an edict effect attached. It’s surprisingly good against some decks too.
One time I pulled this card’s edict effect to surprise Yuuki Ichikawa in Pioneer when he was running a Jeskai Ascendancy deck.
#8. Consecrate // Consume
Lord Xander, the Collector could be played to sacrifice and reanimate multiple times. Its edict effect only triggers when it dies, which is ideal for decks with that theme in mind.
Eight mana may seem like a lot, but you’ll rarely use Nicol Bolas, the Deceiver edict effect initially.
Three mana is the standard for new edict effects that have an upside attached, and Hit // Run is valuable to deal damage to your opponents. I like both sides of Odds // Ends because it’s strictly a counter against other counterspells or removal when needed.
I like that Angrath’s Rampage has multiple edict effects on one card for only two(!!) mana.
Rakdos Riteknife is the only colorless card with an edict effect on it, which makes it #1. As far as how easy it is to pull it off, it’s not.
There aren’t many payoffs dedicated to triggering when a player sacrifices a permanent type. Tergrid, God of Fright is the only one that met that requirement to its whole word extent. It’s a base build around if you want a deck full of discard spells and edicts.
Death triggers are the closest that pay off when an opponent sacrifices a creature. It triggers on the creature’s death rather than its controller’s sacrificing action, but it works, right? Deathbringer Thoctar gets bigger whenever a creature dies, and there are other cards like Ob Nixilis, Unshackled and Malakir Cullblade with a similar effect.
You can benefit from making your opponents sacrifice creatures with Gisa, Glorious Resurrector. You’ll get them on your side eventually.
Massacre Wurm has a very powerful ETB and a solid global effect that punishes your opponents when their creatures die.
Lord Xander, the Collector | Illustration by Martina Fackova
Edict effects aren’t all that impressive on bigger fields. The key to running them is to identify the decks that they’re better suited against. An edict is probably the best answer if you run into a deck whose main condition is an enchantment or a single creature.
On the other hand you can also benefit from running some of the edicts presented if you build your deck around sacrifice effects. Bottom line, it’s all about context.
How do you like to use your edicts? Want to know more about any other particular subset of cards? Let me know in the comments below or over on the Draftsim Twitter.
As always, it’s been a delight researching cards and delivering my findings to you. Take care, and see you next time!Follow Draftsim for awesome articles and set updates: