Kaladesh is a powerful set. Energy juices up the games, like when Twenty Sided Store started selling espresso. But energy is mere synecdoche for the permeating firepower of Kaladesh. Tons of new cards with various stats and mechanics are blowing up across all formats. The cards do a lot, and they make me want to do things with them. Let’s talk about three sweet ones!

The Hard Lock

So this is something I did in Kaladesh draft, but I think you can do it in Standard too.


Yes, that is Consulate Surveillance down in the bottom right corner of my board. It won that game singlehandedly, locking down that Gearseeker Serpent for four turns before I took an enerby break by casting Select for Inspection to bounce it instead. Yes, there’s a gearhulk on board, and some other sweetness going on, but let’s be real: slow white decks full of five and six drops don’t match up that well against the Kaladesh draft field. This deck went 2-1 in a draft league, and Consulate Surveillance did a lot of work without even trying to maximize it. You killed my Thriving Ibex before I could attack with it? Nothing good to force through with Eddytrail Hawk? Bnk that energy for later. The surveillance provide a great use for extra energy.

I think the card could be amazing if you build a solid energy factory. Each two-energy activation shuts down a “source” of damage for the rest of the turn. But you can use it twice to lock out two sources. If you happen to have twenty energy sitting around and nothing to do with it? That’s a lot of surveillance! Have you watched Standard lately? There are some decks that make a lot of energy, but can sometimes get shut out of using it, like when you cant resolve an Aetherworks Marvel. Other decks just make energy off Aether Hub, Harnessed Lightning, and Glimmer of Genius. If they don’t need to burn off all that energy, there can be a good chunk left to monitor “sources” of damage.

And by the way, source includes everything. Your own Madcap Experiment? An opposing Chandra emblem? Damage from True-Name Nemesis? Yeah, those are sources you can name with Consulate Surveillance. Circle of Protection: Energy.

You’ve Got Mail

Bomat Courier! This card is good. It’s like Goblin Guide, except instead of doing a ton of damage and giving your opponent lands they can’t use before they die, it gets a few damage in early then lets you draw three or four cards after you run out of gas.


I had a fun Kaladesh draft deck with two copies of Bomat Courier. Every game I played one on turn one, I won easily with the three or four cards it drew. Once you get it up to two or three cards, you can save a red mana to pop whenever, if you’re hellbent or want to discard your cards. But you can always attack and get one more card before sacrificing it during combat. It might not be the best main strategy for Kaladesh Limited, especially against black decks that can block it and kill it easily. But out of the sideboard against a slower deck trying to hide behind Consulate Skygate, Bomat Courier does a lot of work.

As good as it can be in draft, I started wondering how good it could be in Modern Affinity. Spending a red mana to draw two or three cards on turn three or four is something Affinity would be happy to do. I’m not sure if it is good enough, but it might be. If so, Bomat Courier could revolutionize Affinity, which honestly feels necessary in the face of the new Dredge menace in Modern. I could see cutting Signal Pest or Vault Skirge to fit Bomat Courier, and perhaps adding a Welding Jar or two to protect your cards. I haven’t had time to test Modern lately, but I might have to find some tournaments to try it out.

Now You See It

I haven’t had a chance to play with Disappearing Act yet, but I think I’m missing out. Counterspells are reasonable cards in Kaladesh Limited because of the crazy bombs like gearhulks. Failed Insection costs too much, and Revolutionary Rebuff awkwardly can’t hit artifacts. Disappearing Act is Cancel with situational upside. At worst you have to pick up a land, which usually sucks. But there are a lot of enters-the-battlefield triggers in this set. Blue, especially with white, is happy to reset some cards. And that’s to say nothing of Revoke Privileges and friends. It’s mostly of a late-game counterspell, but that’s when you want to spend a card countering a big threat anyway.

I wonder if Disappearing Act could show up in Standard as well. Void Shatter runs into Ceremonious Rejection, and Scatter to the Winds might be harder to get upside from than bouncing a permanent. Resetting an Aether Hub doesn’t sound too bad, but there are some good blue creatures to rebuy. Torrential Gearhulk is the obvious one, but Reflector Mage also works. If you manage to hit something like Radiant Flames or Negate with Spell Queller, you can pick it back up without fear as well. Even a lowly Thraben Inspector gets some slow value off Disappearing Act. Counterspells seem good right now in Standard. Maybe try this one?

Carrie O’Hara is Editor-in-Chief of Hipsters of the Coast.

Don't Miss Out!

Sign up for the Hipsters Newsletter for weekly updates.