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Legacy: Assassin's Creed Review

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We're barely past the Modern Horizons 3 release, and there's already another spoiler season to cover! This time, Universes Beyond will bring us to the world of Assassin's Creed. Let's lift the veil and see what the past can tell us!

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переведено Joey Sticks

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рассмотрено Tabata Marques

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Nothing is True, Everything is Permitted

Hello, Legacy fans! Yeah, we're barely past the iconic release of Modern Horizons 3link outside website (and certainly the format isn't at all close to settled yet) and BAM! Hooded figures with blades are hiding in plain sight among the crowd. Hasbro doesn't want us to breathe: there's another spoiler season for an Universes Beyond product, this time based on the world-famous Ubisoft game franchise, Assassin's Creedlink outside website.

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This set will give us 100 cards, 80 new and 20 reprints, in the main set, and 42, 26 new and 16 reprints, in the Starter Kit. Unlike other Universes Beyond products that focus more on Commander, Assassin's Creed will be legal in Modern as well. As there are only a few commons in the Starter Kit and none in the main set, its impact in Pauper will be minimal. However, in this article we'll cover this set's impact in Legacy, so let's get to it!

Mechanics

There's one new mechanic in this set called Frerunning. You can summon cards with this ability for an alternative cost if you dealt combat damage to a player with an Assassin (or a Commander, but that doesn't apply to Legacy). This mechanic is similar to Prowl, from the Morningtide set.

A few other mechanics also returned, like Historic, Disguise, Cloak, Detain, Islandwalk, and Shroud.

White

Battlefield Improvisation

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This is another way to attach cards like Colossus Hammer or Kaldra Compleat to other cards for a cheap cost. This card will give you the element of surprise, considering it doesn't need to be on the board before combat.

Senu, Keen-Eyed Protector

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Senu offers some recursion for decks like Death & Taxes. In these decks, you can bring it back through Thalia, Guardian of Thraben, Samwise the Stouthearted, Boromir, Warden of the Tower, or some other creature that became legendary through the Ring.

It is important to note that, to trigger this card's ability, it doesn't matter how you exiled Senu: you can do it through its own ability or if you used it to pay for Solitude's alternative cost, or even if you exiled it from your graveyard through another effect.

Tax Collector

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The first comparison we can make is Thalia, Guardian of Thraben: why would I tax my opponent for only one turn if Thalia's effect is constant? However, Tax Collector affects all spells, not only noncreatures. This might buy you some time against basically any deck, particularly if you use it more times.

Its second ability is also somewhat relevant, as it removes problematic creatures from the game state for one turn. It is even more interesting if you combine it with Aether Vial's instant effect.

Blue

Ballad of the Black Flag

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This Saga is slow, but it will give you many cards again and again, and prepare you for a big combo turn with its fourth chapter. Permanently discounting the cost of your historic cards by 2 mana for one turn is a lot, particularly when you build your deck around artifacts.

Crystal Skull, Isu Spyglass

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This is an interesting card to complement the strategy above. The problem is getting 4 mana in Legacy.

Red

The Spear of Leonidas

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Because of how much it costs to equip and cast, we can compare this card to "Swords of X and Y" (Sword of Fire and Ice, for instance). The Spear of Leonidas' effects are quite strong, and it doesn't need to connect damage to trigger them. It is an option for decks that use the swords we mentioned before. There's also its interaction with a card we'll mention soon.

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Surtr, Fiery Jötun

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Surtr might become a true machine gun if we combine it with low-cost artifacts, which, fortunately, there are a lot of in Legacy.

Gold

Arbaaz Mir

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This is another card that puts a lot of pressure on your opponent when you use it with low-cost artifacts (and legendary creatures too). For some time now, WotC has been trying to push a Boros equipment deck with these Universes Beyond sets: Falloutlink outside website was full of these interactions. Maybe there is already a critical mass for these decks in formats like Commander, so this might eventually happen in Legacy as well.

Kassandra, Eagle Bearer

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I talked about The Spear of Leonidas, talked about how Wizards of the Coast has been pushing Boros Equipment, so now let's talk about Kassandra. A cool detail is that she puts The Spear in play even if it's in your hand or graveyard, so that's 3 mana you'll gain anyhow. She might even give you some extra value if this equipment was destroyed or discarded.

Another cool interaction is that her second ability, despite focusing on drawing cards with the spear, also works with Kaldra Compleat's Germ token!

Artifact

Apple of Eden, Isu Relic

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This is Mindslaver Lite, as it costs 6 mana less considering the cost to activate and summon (which is a lot, to be honest). This card might be an important tool as colorless disruption against combo decks, so it will be an option for decks that might struggle with this archetype, like Lands or Eldrazi.

Excalibur, Sword of Eden

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If it wasn't for the fact this card only equips legendary creatures, Excalibur would be an interesting addition to Affinity decks. Still, it won't be difficult to find a Sai, Master Thopterist or Emry, Lurker of the Loch that can bear this sword.

Land

Abstergo Entertainment

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This land is useful in two ways at the same time: it is a hate against graveyard decks, and it is a way to use an artifact, legendary card, or Saga another time. From the top of my head, I can think of Dark Depths, Minsc & Boo, Timeless Heroes, Urza's Saga, and Haywire Mite.

The fact this card is versatile and doesn't take a spell slot might stand out to decks that interact a lot with lands.

Final Words

Assassin's Creed, despite its surprising release so soon after Modern Horizons 3's whirlwind release, shouldn't impact Legacy much, which has been the norm for Universes Beyond sets in this format. This isn't all that terrible, considering these sets tend to be released on Magic Online much later than on paper, and that usually creates a rift between paper and digital versions. Pre-War Formalwear is the most recent example of this phenomenon: it showed up in many paper lists, but hasn't been released digitally.

Thank you for reading, and see you next time!

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