Today, we look at one of the better Mythic Rares in Gatecrash: [mtg cardname=”Obzedat, Ghost Council” setname=”Gatecrash” linktext=”Obzedat, Ghost Council“]. He’s a 5/5 for 1WWBB (1 colorless, 2 White, 2 Black) with an enter the battlefield ability that makes a target opponent lose 2 life and you gain 2 life. Already, for 5 mana, that’s okay. However, at the beginning of your end step, you may exile him and return him to the battlefield at the beginning of your next upkeep and he gains haste.
So, you have a pretty slippery creature on your hands here. Your opponent can’t touch him with anything but instant speed removal, and his effect is optional, so he can serve as a blocker, as well. However, most of the time, you’ll bring him in during your second main phase (having summoning sickness) and immediately remove him. On your next turn, you get his ability again AND now he can attack, as well! A 5/5 is definitely nothing to sneeze at. So for 5 mana, you’ve gained 4 life, made your opponent lose 4 life, and gotten a 5/5 attacker with Haste? That’s pretty spiffy, not to mention, he can do that several more times.
While he hasn’t seen as much play recently as he did when he was first released, he’s still very good, and fits into a number of control decks as a big beater and a great way to keep the life total gap between you and your opponent expanding. However, as good of a Constructed creature as he is, Obzedat is even better as a Commander, where there are plenty of cards in white and black that fit quite well with abusing the life gain and life loss elements that Obzedat offers.
Overall, Obzedat gives the Orzhov guild both a beater and a flavorful leader. He has a great design and is a great update to [mtg cardname=”Ghost Council of Orzhova” setname=”Guildpact” linktext=”Ghost Council of Orzhova“] from the original Ravnica block.
~ Elspeth for the Win