Sun. Feb 5th, 2023

With the next Magic extension Oath of the Gatekeeper Ars Technica UK will be released in a few weeks and has another exclusive map to share, this time from the main set. Say hello to Sifter of Skulls.

Sieve of skulls

Sieve of skulls

Wizards of the Coast

Everything is a Blisterpod! The Eldrazi are back and continue to ravage Zendikar – and in classic Black Mana style, taking advantage of the fact that their own troops are dying too. Sifter of Skulls produces a steady stream of minions for the cheap price of “creatures killing each other” while also knocking them down like a 4/3 for four.

If you’re not ready to attack, you have dual speed bumps to aid your defense: your opponent must break through your native creatures and the Scions left behind. Or if you go deeper you can use sacrifice cards to produce Scions on demand, or other “when creatures die…” cards to get more bonuses. And with the mana your henchmen can be changed into, you can take down giant threats, including the new ones Vow cards that specifically need colorless mana.

We expect these offering/Scion maps to be an important part of Limited (as in Battle of Zendikar), but Sifter of Skulls may not have the raw efficiency in stats to break into constructed formats. Last year’s Standard saw Aristocrat-style decks do well, and time will tell if the cards are in Vow will provide enough for these decks to start using a more midrange strategy.

<em>Battle for Zendikar</em> had a lot of cards that brought 1/1 Scions to the battlefield, and it looks like that <em>Oath</em> will be no different.” src=”×296.jpg” width=”640″ height=”296 ” srcset=” 2x”/><figcaption class=
Enlarge / Battle for Zendikar had a lot of cards that brought 1/1 Scions to the battlefield, and it looks like it Vow will be no different.

Wizards of the Coast

Oath of the Gatekeeper (OGW) is the next extension and successor of Battle for Zendikar (BFZ), which we reviewed in October. The worldwide release of OGW is January 22, with prerelease events the weekend before, January 16-17. As always, if you’re looking for a prerelease event to attend, use the official Event Locator. We’ll be reviewing the full OGW set next week.

By akfire1

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