Welcome to the God cycle, Kefnet!
This is an interesting card on the surface, and tricky to evaluate. I suspect it may be a bit better than players are currently giving it credit for, but their concerns are certainly valid. This is a difficult condition to meet, and it’s not immediately clear where this can be utilized to it’s full potential.
On the surface, it’s unclear how much an impact this will have on this current Standard environment. This restriction seems much harder than the other God cards we’ve seen in this set. Maintaining a full grip may not seem hard considering the support cast of cards we have – but is it worth it? This seems like a traditional Control archetype will consider using a few copies, but they already have access to Torrential Gearhulk that end the game fairly well on their own. It remains to be seen if there would even be a shift to that style of play, considering there’s tempo archetypes built around Dynavolt Tower that have had success on their own recently.
There’s not a great precedent that sets a great success rate on maintaining a full hand, see Saviors of Kamigawa. So, unless the format slows down it’s going to be regulated to drawing a few extra cards – and crewing Heart of Kiran. I’m starting to feel like Hazoret, the Fervent may have the edge here in the Standard format. There are some instances that Kefnet can generate a lot of advantage, early on players can aggressively use it’s mana sink to meet the condition and attack opposing Gideon, Ally of Zendikar where normally there wouldn’t be a reliable out to stay on-step with the Vehicles player. There’s always a downside, but this warrants testing – and I can see this being a useful 1-2 of since decks can’t always rely on Geahulk due to Unlicensed Disintigration.
It’s early to tell if the current value of this card is fair. But, it’s in a specific spot where it wouldn’t be much of a downside to acquire copies early if there’s any inclination you folks would like to use it in testing, deckbuilding, or even Commander. There will always be that outlet for desire, because God typed cards have widespread appeal. Even if they don’t measure up against the original cycle.