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Last weekend at MagicCon Philadelphia, Wizards of the Coast unveiled a handful of cards from the upcoming interplanar crossover set, March of the Machines. The Phyrexians have breached into countless planes, including the last dozen or so visited by us, the players. As demonstrated by new cards such as Thalia and The Gitrog Monster, inhabitants of those worlds become unlikely allies, teaming up to fend off this otherworldly threat.
Inspired by this thread on Twitter, I've assembled my top five legendary team ups. Based on what we've seen so far, the only hard rules are that the characters must be from the same plane and the creature type combination must be at least a little goofy like our previously mentioned human frog horror. There also seems to be a thematic throughline calling back to the abilities of previous iterations of those legendary characters, though it's not 100% required as seen with Drana and Linvala and Yargle and Multani.
With that out of the way, let's get into the countdown.
5. Borborygmos and Tomik
First up on my list is a mix of Borborygmos Enraged and Tomik, Distinguished Advokist. Tomik is a small-framed man who specializes in contracts and verbal agreements for the Orzhov Syndicate. Borborygmos, the massive cyclops and former head of the Gruul clans is also quite adept with words. His prose can be found in the flavor text of cards such as Gruul Charm, "Not Gruul? Then Die!" as well as the brilliant, "Meat and eggs. We eat!" on Protean Hulk.
Most importantly, Borborygmos's and Tomik's most recent cards have a focus on lands. Tomik protects the player's lands from the opponent and Borborygmos, uh, throws them. Bringing these two together for a Naya lands-matter legend would be an absolute win for our Commander crowd.
4. Ragavan and Gonti
Soldier, Poet, King? More like Aetherborn, Monkey, Pirate. That type line is reason enough to pair these two creatures together, but let's go in even more. Both Ragavan, Nimble Pilferer and Gonti, Lord of Luxury are mechanically similar, stealing cards from the opponent's deck. Lore-wise, Ragavan's owner, Kari Zev, Skyship Raider and Gonti allied with Chandra and the Renegades, so this isn't the first time they've been on the same side of a fight against an oppressive power. It is worth noting it's somewhat difficult to find red and black-aligned characters that could be considered protagonists interested in fighting for the greater good, so I'm more than happy to lock these two in.
3. Jinnie Fay and Ziatora
This pairing is more a matter of who's left than anything else. Following the events of the Streets of New Capenna story, Xander's dead, Giada's dead, and Jetmir's mortally wounded. As Jetmir's lieutenant, Jinne Fay, Jetmir's Second is a natural fit to lead the Cabaretti with her army of token cats and dogs. Ziatora, the Incinerator leads the Riveteers faction and their hoard of treasure (tokens). The Riveteers have a monopoly on the city's supply of Halo, the anti-Phyrexian angel juice that beat the first Phyrexian invasion. If Ziatora can provide the Halo and Jinnie can ready an army of citizens, it's a perfect match.
Going back to game mechanics, this pairing cares about creating tokens and sacrificing disposable creatures. Mixing and matching tokens for a base-red and green team up card is exactly what these crime families need.
2. Rankle and Emry
I'll concede that this pairing is almost entirely fanservice. Both Rankle, Master of Pranks and Emry, Lurker of the Loch are popular characters due to their competitive viability. From a gameplay perspective, both do a great job of filling up the graveyard and snowball card advantage. Faerie and merfolk are also very relevant creature types, allowing for potential cross-tribe synergies.
There also aren't very many legendary creatures in Eldraine. The Syr cycle isn't especially noteworthy and Ayara has already been confirmed to be compleated in the upcoming set. In theory, I could see Questing Beast replacing one of these characters in the team up, but if we're trying to hybridize their text boxes, there's no way we're fitting even more text onto that beast.
1. Hazoret and Djeru
Coming in at number one is a team up with Hazoret the Fervent and Djeru, With Eyes Open. This is the only pairing I'm certain we'll see for the simple reason that nearly every other named character from Amonkhet is dead. Plus, legendary creature—Human God is just so incredibly cool.
Hapatra, Vizier of Poisons could potentially replace either of these characters, however, Thalia and the Gitrog Monster is already an Abzan creature, meaning Hapatra and Djeru would overlap, causing color balancing issues.
Lore-wise, Hapatra is the leader of the refugees from Naktamun and in the event of an interplanar crisis, her work is most needed leading her people to safety, not on the battlefield. Although I have a bad feeling that she may be joining the Phyrexians in the near future. The flavor text on Hapatra's Mark reads, “If you fear poisons, it is because you are ignorant of them.” I worry this mentality may mean she gets a bit too close to the glistening oil for her own good.
I'm so excited for the epic conclusion of the
Multiverse Saga Phyrexian War in this next set. Between these team up legends, compleated versions of major characters, and whatever these new battle cards are supposed to be, there's so much to look forward to.
Leave a comment letting me know what you're most looking forward to and what characters you most want to see return (and whose side you want them to be on). As always, you can find me on Twitter at @adamecohen and on Twitch at AcexSpades.
I'll catch you all next week.