urborg-tomb-of-yawgmoth

Yes, that is Urborg, Tomb of Yawgmoth. What has been a card that’s been well over $25 for a long time will now be available to a much wider audience in a Core Set. Why is a land of this power level in a Core Set? It’s hard to say. What is fairly obvious is that Wizards of the Coast really wants players to play Black. And we totally needed more mono-Black Devotion helping cards.

Urborg, Tomb of Yawgmoth has seen play in Legacy for a very long time, especially in the Dark Depths deck. It’s seen play in Mono-Black Pox, Tezzeret Control and some Reanimator builds. Making all lands into Swamps is a very powerful effect, especially with how much power Black has been gaining in recent years.

With the advent of the Modern format, demand for Urborg has increased quite rapidly. It sees play in Golgari Midrange, Black/White Tokens, Mono-Black Infect (to make Inkmoth Nexus tap for Black), Unburial Gifts, Ad Nauseum Combo, and a slew of other lists. Basically, any deck that can benefit by having all of its lands tap for black mana benefit. In Commander, it’s a Black staple. If you play Black, there’s little reason not to run it.

You might think, wait, doesn’t making your opponents’ lands into Swamps help them, as well? Potentially, yes. This is what makes the card fair. But for the decks that typically play Urborg, the advantage goes to the one playing them, as it allows those decks to play cards with greedier Black mana requirements.

As it stands right now, in Standard, Mutavault will get to tap for Black mana until it rotates out; of course, this fact still be relevant in Modern. The other thing that Urborg may allow to happen is a strong Green/Black deck built around Nissa, Worldwaker. It will also make splashing Black far easier in a wide variety of decks – and making fringe playable decks like B/W Heroic, U/B Control, and Esper Control far more potent. Making scry lands into Swamps is also pretty good.

The best part about Urborg, Tomb of Yawgmoth is that it’s a fair card that helps everyone. It’s also far better than the last time it was in Standard (Planar Chaos) because of the updated Legend rule, in which all players can each control one copy of any given Legendary card. Kudos to Wizards of the Coast to reprinting a powerful card that old and new players alike can enjoy and add to their collections and decks. It’s a card good in every format. And yes, even in Limited.

– Elspeth for the Win

 

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