Legion's Landing has been a staple in White Aggro decks since its release in Ixalan, and it will likely continue to be one until it rotates out of Standard. This past weekend Lee Shi Tian piloted his White-Blue Aggro deck to a 6th place finish at the Mythic Championship in Las Vegas. Legion's Landing is a four-of in that deck and is one of the best turn-one spells in the deck. It provides a 1/1 lifelink token turn one and will likely transform by turn three or four. This ramps you by one mana and provides a token engine that can be a great asset against control decks that make resolving creature spells difficult. The lifelink ability on the tokens is also relevant with Mono-Red continuing to maintain a presence in many Standard events.
This is the first of many Modern Horizon cards that made this list. There are a few different Modern decks that Eladamri's Call might fit into well. The most likely is Devoted Druid Combo. It has the perfect colors for the deck, can be cast at instant speed for an end step tutor and it can grab either piece of the combo. This should improve the consistency of an already competitive deck.
When I first read this card I couldn't believe my eyes. There aren't too many red enchantments that are win conditions, and this one seems to be replacing its predecessor in some Modern decks due to the increase of graveyard hate in the current meta. The predecessor I am referring to is, of course, Pyromancer Ascension. This Storm staple has also been a second win condition in Blue-Red Phoenix decks, but that may be coming to an end soon. The prevalence of graveyard-based decks has coincidentally increased the number of answers to Pyromancer Ascension that players are running in their 75. This means Aria of Flame looks to be a much better option as it isn't weak to graveyard removal and has the added bonus of allowing you to run fewer four-ofs since it doesn't care about the names of the instants and sorceries being cast. Aria of Flame in a deck that can cast three to four spells a turn will take back the life it gives in no time. If your opponent was at 20 when you played it and gained 10, you'd still only need eight spells to kill them with Aria of Flame alone. Don't forget, Aria only requires that you cast the spell, not that it resolves. So even against control-heavy decks you'll be fine so long as you can keep Aria on the battlefield.
This card is a reprint of Engineered Plague from Urza's Legacy, just on a 2/2 creature with deathtouch. Modern has a few very strong tribal decks including Elves, Merfolk and Humans, and Plague Engineer is one of the best answers to these decks. The -1/-1 will slow them down and kill any creatures with 1 toughness the moment they hit the battlefield.
Vampire Commander decks have a new addition in Cordial Vampire. This card is especially good in token decks like Edgar Markov where you can utilize tokens as a resource with Phyrexian Altar or Skullclamp while boosting the power and toughness of the rest of your vampires.
This one seems to be speculation. Wizards recently previewed some cards from the upcoming Core Set 2020. One of those cards has people buying up Blood Suns in anticipation of someone finding a way to break it. This new card is Lotus Field. When Lotus Field enters the battlefield, it enters tapped, and you must sacrifice two lands. The upside is that it taps for three mana of any color and is hexproof so your opponent can't target it to three-for-one you. Bring Blood Sun into the mix, though, and those downsides both go away. Blood Sun removes all of the abilities of Lotus Field other than mana abilities. So you now have a land that enters untapped and taps for three mana of any color. It's important to note Lotus Field also loses hexproof, but that is less of a concern when you didn't have to sacrifice two lands to get it into play.
I think Commander players are the reason for this spike in sales. With the printing of Ayula, Queen Among Bears, a lot of people are building Bear Tribal now. When you have Ayula and a board full of Bear tokens, Second Harvest can be a wrath that only hits your opponents' creatures or a combat trick that puts dozens of +1/+1 counters on your Bears at instant speed.
We got so close to having Mother of Runes in Modern. The Legacy staple Mother of Runes has been a favorite of players for a long time. Affectionately nicknamed "Mom," Mother of Runes was a key card in the classic Death and Taxes deck in Legacy. Giver of Runes, or "Stepmom" as some Redditors are calling it, is almost the same card with a few important distinctions. First off, we have the body. Giver of Runes got a 1 toughness upgrade over its predecessor.
Creature types can be important and it seems Wizards was being cautious with this reimagining of Mother of Runes. Humans has been a very powerful deck in Modern for a while, and it is constantly switching in and out cards as sets release, due to how many creatures are Humans. Giver of Runes is a Kor Cleric which will likely restrict its usage in the Humans deck.
The last two changes are within the tap ability. Giver of Runes can grant protection from colorless while Mother of Runes was only able to grant protection from colors. This is a pretty big improvement as it can grant protection from land abilities and colorless creatures. In Modern, that means whatever creature you target can block a Wurmcoil Engine, and since damage is prevented, you won't have to worry about the lifelink or deathtouch abilities. The final change is that Giver of Runes isn't able to target itself. The built-in protection Mother of Runes had by being able to target itself is a part of why it was so successful. So Giver of Runes was nerfed a bit in this regard.
Being used to blue flying creatures with low-powered abilities and low toughness, I almost missed how strong this card was at first. A 3/4 flyer for three isn't typical for blue creatures, though you pay for that efficiency with card disadvantage. You draw two cards and discard three when it enters. But as we all know, Magic players take pride in their ability to turn disadvantages into advantages. A few things that come to mind with Bazaar Trademage are Hollow One and Phoenix decks. Both of these decks require discarding to get their deck moving. In the case of Hollow One, Bazaar Trademage makes it free. You get some card selection with the draw and discard on top of having a 3/4 flyer and a 4/4 Hollow One on the battlefield.
In Phoenix decks, Bazaar Trademage gives you another way to put Arclight Phoenix into the graveyard, and as a 3/4 itself, it will cause some damage on its own, as well.
In a vacuum, this card seems a little underwhelming. It is mana efficient, but two 4/4's on turn five without haste isn't super exciting. But luckily Crashing Footfalls was designed to be cheated in, and that is exactly why it is our number 1 card. Before I get into the cards that cheat Crashing Footfalls in early, I'm going to take a minute to explain how it can be cheated in. One of the rulings of Crashing Footfalls is:
Crashing Footfalls has no mana cost. You can't cast it unless an effect (such as that of suspend) allows you to cast it for an alternative cost or without paying its mana cost. Its converted mana cost is 0.
That last sentence is the most important to enabling the combos with Crashing Footfalls. While the card has no mana cost, it still has a converted mana cost. Therefore abilities that look for specific converted mana costs will recognize Crashing Footfalls as costing 0.
Now that we've got that out of the way, let's take a look at the cards in Modern that have people speculating on this.
Bloodbraid Elf, which was reintroduced to Modern not too long ago, has the cascade ability. When you cast Bloodbraid Elf, or any other spell with cascade, you exile cards from the top of your library until you exile a non-land card with a converted mana cost less than the spell with cascade. In Bloodbraid's case, that would be 4, so the first spell exiled that costs less than 4 would be automatically cast. For Crashing Footfalls, which has a converted mana cost of 0, that would mean skipping past the suspend and casting the spell immediately.
As Foretold is another card with potential to be used with Crashing Footfalls. The upkeep after playing this, you add the time counter to As Foretold and can cast any spell with a converted mana cost of 1 or less.
We want to really cheat this in early, though, so to speed it up a turn you can play Dreadhorde Arcanist. This two-drop creature can attack, and, without any spells to buff it, it will be able to cast an instant or sorcery with a converted mana cost of 1 or less from your graveyard without paying its mana cost. That could easily be 9 power on the battlefield turn three.
While there are a bunch of other cards that can cheat this in, I'm going to leave off with my favorite, which is also likely the card most responsible for Crashing Footfalls sales.
Electrodominance. This instant speed burn spell allows you to cast an instant or sorcery from your hand with a converted mana cost less than, or equal to X. For those who really want to get this out early, this combo can be cast on turn one if you have a Simian Spirit Guide in hand. What makes Electrodominance so much better than all the other choices isn't just the low mana investment. It's also an instant, and its ability overrides the timing restrictions of sorceries cast with it. That means you can cast it at the end of your opponent's turn, or in response to your opponent's attack to get added value by killing off attackers.
That's it for this week's Top 10. This weekend is MagicFest Dallas-Fort Worth so we'll probably get a chance to see some more brewing with the newest additions to Modern.