Hello everyone! As the weeks tick by, Ixalan’s release comes closer and closer, and with it, Grand Prix Providence! I am extremely excited, because Team Sealed is my second favorite format, only coming after Team Constructed! This sealed format seems super interesting, and today I’m going to run through some uncommons that I find very interesting. Some will be hard to evaluate, some may be traps, and others may be slam-dunk build around windmill slam picks. Lets check ’em out!

Glorifier of Dusk

I think this card is great. To begin with, it is a Vampire, which is relevant at times. While I think the route in sealed is usually to go for the most powerful deck you can, small synergies like the ones that Vampires have in this set can be the little edge that pushes your deck to become better. The abilities being optional at the cost of life to me is at least interesting, even if it may end up being bad. I think this card is going to go into most White decks.

Imperial Aerosaur

Remember those traps I was talking about? Yeah? This isn’t one of them. This card is straight up a slam-dunk mythic uncommon. I don’t even know what to say about this card, it has flying and is a 3/3 for 4, a card which already very good, and lifting something into the air and giving it a little push makes this card insane to me. Sealed is all about who can finish off their opponent in grindy battles, and Aerosaur does this perfectly. The card also blocks most of the flyers in this set, as you may not have noticed, which mostly have 2 power and 1-2 toughness, adding even more great facts to the list of why Aerosaur is busted.

Deeproot Waters

Yes, I am the same guy who told you he valued raw power over synergy every time. But wait! Hear me out! This card has the potential to be busted in half, as you will consistently get 3+ Merfolk over the course of a long, grindy game. I think this card isn’t necessarily good enough to build a whole deck around, but if you open enough good Merfolk and have this, it may be worth a shot. I will for sure be playing with this card a lot in testing.

Storm Fleet Spy

While I don’t think this card is particularly interesting, as it is, in fact, just a good card, I do think it demonstrates something strange I have found about blue in this set. Usually, Blue tends to be a sort of controlling color even in Limited, but this set pushes Blue heavily towards an Aggro-Tempo strategy. I just found this interesting, and it does make it pair better with the other colors in the set. I don’t think Storm Fleet Spy is that good, but I think it goes in all but the most controlling of Blue decks almost every time.

Lurking Chupacabra

This synergy argument just keeps coming back to haunt me…. Honestly, I think this card is a huge gamble. If I have about 8-10 cards with explore, I am very happily putting this in my deck. The fact that its floor is so low is pretty negative, but I think the ceiling is high enough that Chupacabra will be worth a try, at least in the beginning of the format.

Wanted Scoundrels

This card is, in my opinion, 100% a trap. Mana in Magic is such a crucial part of the game. As an aggro deck, which is the only place I could even consider playing this, you cannot afford to give your opponents free mana. This card’s ceiling is a 4/3 for two, which is admittedly great, but the risk that they kill it after a turn and then drop their 5/6 two turns early is high, and stops you dead in your tracks quite literally, as you will be dead shortly after their play.

Grim Captain’s Call

YES. “Let me just dig through my graveyard for Carnage Tyrant, Vona, Butcher of Magan, Dire Fleet Ravager, and this Waker of the Wilds. Wait no, don’t scoop!”

[Editor’s note: ]

Charging Monstrosaur

This card is real good. It comes down and can either block for days, or attack for equally as many days. The trample and haste is what really puts this card over the top for me. My first GP day 2 involved splashing for 2 copies of Colossapede, and having one in my RPTQ deck could have gotten me that sweet top 16 playmat that I so narrowly missed. Throw trample and haste on my insect and make it a Dinosaur? Yes please.

Fiery Cannonade

This card is really good against aggro and pretty bad everywhere else. If you are somehow playing a U/R Pirates deck in your sealed tournament, this may be worth a shot, but for now, keep those shots safe inside the cannon.

Thundering Spineback

This is the type of card I love in sealed. As a mana sink, Spineback is great, and the fact that sealed is a super grindy format (usually) makes it even better. You will reliably get to cast this in many games of sealed, and after two or more activations, this Dino gets insane. Just remember, if you’re in the market for a mana sink and a big body, this guy has your back.

Snapping Sailback

Whoo boy! These dinosaurs sure do have a ton of weird stuff on their backs huh? Apart from Mr. Sailback’s anatomy, he does block like a master and comes down as a large threat when you need him to. The fact that Sailback has the potential to get bigger as the game progresses makes him a must-play in any green deck, in my opinion. Just remember, if you need someone to watch your back…

Multicolor Uncommons


Deadeye Plunderers, Shapers of Nature, Marauding Looter, Raging Swordtooth, and Sky Terror are all very powerful, and would go out of my way to splash for any of them if you have appropriate fixing.

Dire Fleet Captain is great in a Pirate deck, but I don’t feel a dire need to play him outside of a B/R aggro deck.

Sadly Brontosaurus Buddy isn’t that great, but I’m sure if someone reaches far enough, they can find a way to make him work.

Cobbled Wings

While the card looks lackluster, that’s because it’s just some leather wings. Now try to imagine the wings carrying Carnage Tyrant into your house. Yeah.

On a serious level, the card has potential, and I think I will certainly be testing with it in the coming weeks.

As always, I hope you enjoyed this article, and more specifically, my fantastic puns. Good luck in your next Magic event, and see you next week!

Riccardo Monico

For more Ixalan limited analysis, read Ben Pall’s article where he goes over the set’s mechanics and how they will effect limited game play, here.

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