Trap Essence is a counterspell for RUG that also puts two +1/+1 counters on up to one target creature. I’m personally not a huge fan of this card due to the triple cost of the spell, but it will probably see some play in limited due to the low number of hard counter spells that we’ve seen so far. The two counters is pretty relevant, though. On any given morph creature, that makes them a 4/4, letting you trigger Ferocious on your other Temur clan cards. As far as standard is concerned, I don’t see a three-color counter spell being played unless we see 4/5 color decks seeing play. With fetch lands, this isn’t impossible, but wouldn’t be worth it just to play this card.
Abzan Falconer is the Outlast card I was hoping to see. 2W for a 2/1 with Outlast W, and he gives all creatures you control with +1/+1 counters flying. While this seems like a minor ability, it’s very important in Commander, especially for Ghave, Guru of Spores. One of the big problems the deck has is a lack of flyers, as there are less cards that give massive amounts of flying tokens. The fact it does give itself flying once it has a +1/+1 counter is good, however. I definitely see this seeing solid limited play, and maybe standard play if Abzan becomes a force.
Gurmag Swiftwing is actually a pretty cool looking card. A 1/2 for 1B would be good for a flyer – but this also has first strike and haste. While I’m not usually a fan of stuff like this above common, the fact it has three abilities earns it that slot pretty easily. A solid pick in limited as it only needs a single black, and could possibly see standard play if black needs the haste swings from this guy. I definitely could see a red/black raid deck with this being pretty strong. Being able to immediately swing in the air and have that first strike to deal with 1/1 flyers easily. Pretty solid card.
Mer-Ek Nightblade is our first black card with Outlast. 3B for a 2/3 is good stats in this set, as it kills morph creatures easily. Plus, its outlast is just B, and he gives all of your creatures with +1/+1 counters deathtouch. Pretty solid card, and will definitely help out with making Abzan a force in limited.
Molting Snakeskin is actually a pretty decent card. For just B, you give the enchanted creature +2/+- and 2B: Regenerate this creature. At common, I’ve got no complaints about this card for limited. I’ll definitely be playing it.
Pine Walker is an interesting card. 3GG for a 5/5 with Moprh 4G. The morph cost is mostly to let you play it at only a single G mana, which will be important in three color decks. Also, whenever he or another creature is turned face up, you untap that creature. Most of what we’ve seen from Temur is morph cards, and this card is interesting.
Tuskguard Captain is a 2/3 for 2G with another Outlast for just G. Plus, he gives all of your creatures with +1/+1 counters with trample. I definitely could see this seeing play in Vorel of the Hullclade Commander decks. Pretty solid.
Briber’s Purse is a pretty interesting card for limited. An X drop artifact that enters with X “gem” counters on it. You can pay 1, tap, and remove a gem counter to make a creature unable to attack or block this turn. While it isn’t permanent like Gwafa Hazid’s Bribery counters, it’s still a decent play for limited.
Until next time,