Single Card Discussion: Ezuri’s Predation

 

Hello and welcome back to the Single Card Discussion series! After my pieces on Amonkhet’s new Mouth // Feed and Commander 2013 gem Opal Palace, it’s time to take a look at yet another multiplayer gem that I feel has been sadly overlooked.

Today’s card is one that I’ve thought was highly useful since it was first spoiled, and though it does see play, I’m shocked that more players haven’t looked at it for EDH. Today’s card is the Commander 2015 green Wrath, Ezuri’s Predation.

Let’s take a deeper look at this powerful sweeper!

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FOF

Thus far in my Single Card series, I’ve looked at some great multiplayer gems.

• I started the series with Utter End, my favorite spot removal spell from Khans, here.
• I looked at a red card, Outpost Siege, my overall favorite card from Fate Reforged, here.
• Another red card, Greater Gargadon, a fantastic sacrifice outlet, here.
• I looked at the first monowhite card, the tricksy Seht’s Tiger here.
• The first blue card of the series, Gilded Drake, a potent thievery effect, here.
• I went over white control card World Queller and how to use its powerful effect here.
• I looked at the once-restricted blue recursion card Recall, the only blue card that can recur dead planeswalkers (plus any other type of card), here.
• I went over the first black card of this series, Commander 2014’s Flesh Carver, an excellent sacrifice outlet here.
• As part of my week-long look at Modern Masters 2015 cards, I looked at Endrek Sahr, Master Breeder, and his token-making prowess here.
• We went over the red sweeper Magmaquake, which hits all planeswalkers at once, here.
• I looked at Shrouded Lore, a strange black recursion spell, here.
• We discussed the power of tapping down opposing creatures with a trio of white cards: Glare of Subdual, Sandsower, and Diversionary Tactics, here.
• I took a look at two green recursion creatures, Hua Tuo, Honored Physician, and Loaming Shaman from Ravnica, here.
• I looked at an Innistrad favourite, Reaper from the Abyss, an excellent card for killing off opposing creatures, here.
• I looked at the powerful Magic Origins card Chandra’s Ignition, a mighty Wrath effect/player killer, here.
• I spotlighted Vorinclex’s potent new win condition and mana-ramp spell, From Beyond, and the possibilities of an Eldrazi sideboard here.
• I looked at my favourite modal spell from Commander 2014, the deceptively useful Wretched Confluence here.
• I looked at new Ally tribal leader General Tazri and how she would interact with the Allies here.
• I looked at the Mana Reflection/Soul of the Harvest love child, Zendikar Resurgent here.
• I looked at the super Purify slash big dude, Kalemne’s Captain, here.
• I went over one of my favorite lands from Shadows Over Innistrad block, Westvale Abbey (and its flip side, Ormendahl) here.
• I took a look at Amonkhet’s new powerhouse card drawing spell, Pull from Tomorrow, which is deceptively good, here.
• I went over the aftermath all-star, Commit // Memory, a powerful and flexible bounce spell and draw 7, here.
• I looked at a third Amonkhet card, as I looked at a second aftermath card, Dusk // Dawn here.
• I took a look at a fourth Amonkhet card, Mouth // Feed, which was the third aftermath card that I really liked, here.
• Finally, I shared my thoughts on the simple-but-powerful Commander 2013 land, Opal Palace here.

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Today’s card was, for me, one of the standout cards from Commander 2015, yet I’ve never seen or heard any EDH discussion about it. Ezuri’s Predation is an extremely potent green Wrath effect and game ender, and has won many games at my EDH table. Let’s take a deeper look.

First, some quick rules behind this card:

• 11/4/2015: Players can’t cast spells or activate any abilities in between the Beasts entering the battlefield and fighting the other creatures. If the Beasts entering the battlefield cause any abilities to trigger, those abilities will be put onto the stack after Ezuri’s Predation is finished resolving.
• 11/4/2015: You choose which Beast is fighting which creature an opponent controls.
• 11/4/2015: Each of the “fights” happens at the same time.
• 11/4/2015: If Ezuri’s Predation creates more than one token for any given creature (due to an effect such as the one Doubling Season creates), the extra tokens won’t fight any creature.

Ezuri’s Predation is one of very few sweeper spells in mono-green. Basically, if a green player wants to kill creatures, they have to either play a second color, or run one of these cards: Nevinyrral’s Disk, Oblivion Stone, Perilous Vault, All is Dust, or Ugin, the Spirit Dragon. (Notably, none of those cards are actually green.)

In fact, the closest Wizards has ever come to printing a green Wrath effect was The Great Aurora, a popular card from Magic Origins, which doesn’t remove permanents for good (it shuffles them in, like Warp World).

So, saying Ezuri’s Predation is a unique green card is a bit obvious.

One major thing that drew me to this card was that it is a one-sided Wrath effect; it will never hit your own creatures, only your opponents’ creatures. This will often be a game-changer, letting you clear potential blockers out of the way so you can alpha-strike, or just simply wiping your opponents’ boards (never a bad thing!)

It’s worth mentioning that Ezuri’s Predation functions by making a pile of 4/4 creatures, and is in green. What else works with a pile of creatures and is in green? That’s right, Overrun effects to end games with! When played together, Predation plus an Overrun is a very effective one-two punch, and a great way to kill opposing players.

Along that same line, since this card operates by making 4/4’s that fight opposing creatures, any static pump spell for your team makes this card that much better (these being cards like Collective Blessing or Thunderfoot Baloth, which sit in play and pump your entire team). With a pump spell in play, the creature tokens that Predation makes are big enough to take down pretty much anything.

As with any token-producing card that Wizards has ever made, it’s worth mentioning that this card is fantastic with token doubling effects like Doubling Season, or Primal Vigor, that double the number of tokens you get. Token-based generals like Trostani, Selesnya’s Voice or Rhys the Redeemed love this card.

It’s worth mentioning that this does have some drawbacks to it. It will never kill indestructible creatures, and cannot really kill creatures that can regenerate (unless you get lucky). If you don’t have a team pump spell in play, it’ll never kill anything bigger than a 4/4. And of course, if your opponents are not running creature-based EDH decks (say they’re running some form of control deck), this does literally nothing.

Having said that, this is a damn good card for EDH, and a great thing for green players to have access to.

Currently, I have this in quite a few decks. This is in our mono-green control deck, Vorinclex, Voice of Hunger, just as a Wrath effect, where it has been excellent. Likewise, it is also in our Temur deck Surrak Dragonclaw, where it gets a little bit more utility (Surrak gives the 4/4 Beast tokens trample!)

The deck where it has most shone has been Kresh the Bloodbraided, however. Since Kresh gets a +1/+1 counter boost every time a creature dies, having the Beast tokens from Ezuri’s Predation kill opposing creatures is good, and having them die while fighting opposing creatures is also good, both things will pump Kresh. Casting Predation can often lead to an enormous Kresh, and quite frequently a general kill.

So that’s a quick look at Ezuri’s Predation. If you’re a green player looking for a way to Wrath other players and add creatures to your own board, I’d urge you to give this card a try.

 

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