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Masters 25: Upgrading the Arsenal

New set season is always such a great time, especially when the number of toys we are given is so large. As fun as it is to view brand new block sets, and see new cards added to the catalog, it's equally exciting to see old favorites added to the legality. This spoiler season has been quite exciting indeed, and I am looking forward to digging into it.

Masters 25 has been quite explosive, giving something to every format. It even managed to throw us some unusual twists. For those that play several formats, there was a lot to digest. However, I'm going to make digesting additions to PDH a bit easier. There's a lot on the menu, and it deserve our attention.


With Masters 25, we got some interesting additions, aside from simply adding creatures to the legality. We have received new art for some old creatures, as well as actual Legendary creatures in the mix. This has certainly added some more flavor, so let's take a look at the top 5 commanders from the set.

Any of these 5 commanders will make a fantastic addition to your arsenal of commanders. There is very little I can say, other than my overwhelming desire to play Zada, Hedron Grinder. Despite these great additions, the bulk of my comments really come from the previously uncommon reprints, and their new artwork.

Let's start this with a fun fact. Imperial Recruiter is PDH legal, originally printed as an uncommon in Portal: Three Kingdoms. I don't feel a desire to brew this, due to its price tag, but it is still great to see some new art. Another piece I'm glad to see is Watchwolf. Here's a commander that I have always enjoyed, and I'm pleased to have it enter our library of resources. I was equally as excited to not only see a needed update for Stangg, but a new Stangg Twin token to finally be made. There is no shortage to flavor here.

Additions to the 99

The uncommon creatures from Masters 25 certainly delivered, and the commons didn't disappoint either. Some pieces are strong, and some are absolutely absurd, creating a new archetype in PDH altogether. Let's take a look at some highlights below.

Before I dive into the deeper things, I want to talk about our new great additions to white and green. Loyal Sentry (which will almost definitely see play in Pauper Constructed) is such a potent chump blocker, giving you a huge chance to hold back a threat on the board. There is always something nice about having removal when a creature enters the battlefield, and its even better when it comes from a morphed creature. Ainok Survivalist gives you a sneaky advantage that you can save for just the right moment.

Next, I need to take a moment, and recall several primers that I had written in the past. Borrowing 100,000 Arrows will become auto-include when considering card draw (see Card Draw Spells of All Colors), and should be on your mind for any blue deck you build in the future (see Starter Pack: Blue Cards). This will certainly be finding a new home in several of my blue decks. How about my Tribal Goblins deck? There's a new toy for that too. I was thrilled to see Hordeling Outburst, and should be on your list of inclusion for any goblin build (see Tribal Guide: The Book of Goblins). Furthermore, creating three creatures from a 3 drop is fantastic in any situation. This can fit in a lot of places.

Finally, the last highlight to discuss (In my opinion, the most exciting, solely for hilarity and flavor), Relentless Rats enters the format. Although previously being legal as a commander, it was a card that at the time, gave you absolute zero utility. However, entering the 99 changes everything. This is now a viable strategy in the format, with several great options for commanders. The funniest part of all of this, is that as of writing this article, there are no regulations that prevent you from playing a rats deck, and still choosing to have Relentless Rats be your commander. Just make sure the commander can be clearly identified from the others.


This spoiler season has been an absolute blast, and has delivered more than any masters set to date. With brand new toys now, and Dominaria just around the corner, we all have a lot of work to do, shaping our decks, and preparing for a new wave of weapons. Happy Playing!



#2018 #NewSet #Masters #Pauper


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