One of the fresh archetypes Kaldheim is bringing to Standard upon its release is Golgari Elves. Elves are a tribe that is represented in every major format except Standard. There hasn’t been a strong Elves deck in the format since Dominaria, although Kaldheim is looking to change that with Elves being one of the supported creature types in the upcoming tribal set.
In Kaldheim, Harald is Tyvar Kell’s older brother who united the Wood Elves and Shadow Elves under one banner. The Saga and card bearing Harald’s namesake depict the King’s achievement and supports the Golgari Elves strategy in Limited and Standard.
Harald Unites the Elves
- CMC: 2BG
- Type: Enchantment Saga
- Rarity: Rare
- First ability: Mill three cards. You may put an Elf or Tyvar card from your Graveyard onto the battlefield.
- Second ability: Put a +1/+1 counter on each Elf you control.
- Third ability: Whenever an Elf you control attacks this turn, target creature an opponent controls gets -1/-1 until end of turn.
This Saga will see Standard play in Golgari Elves. The first chapter is a four-mana reanimation spell for critical Elf creatures or a Tyvar Kell. Then your whole board gets buffed with a +1/+1 counter. That effect could end the game before the Saga hits the final chapter. The final chapter can clear out the opponent’s blocker, making the way for lethal damage.
Elves want to have plenty of creatures on the battlefield. If five or six elves attack, that’s enough to take out one big creature or wipe the opponent’s board in some cases. -1/-1 counters also get around indestructible effects primarily found in white decks. This Saga will be an excellent addition to the upcoming Golgari Elves deck.
Harald, King of Skemfar
- CMC: 1BG
- Type: Legendary Creature Elf Warrior
- Rarity: Uncommon
- Stats: 3/2 menace
- First ability: When Harald, King of Skemfar enters the battlefield, look at the top five cards of your library. You may reveal an Elf, Warrior, or Tyvar card from among them and put it into your hand. Put the rest on the bottom of your library in a random order.
Harald is a signpost uncommon for the Golari Elves deck in Limited. Three mana for an evasive 3/2 is worth the cost. Harald provides additional value by digging five cards deep for a creature with a relevant type. The uncommon Legendary Creature isn’t powerful on its own, but the ability to find win conditions while providing a solid body shouldn’t be overlooked. The Golgari Elves deck will need a card in the three-drop spot in the mana curve and Harald might fit the bill.
Find how for yourself how strong Golgari Elves will be in Standard when Kaldheim releases digitally on Magic Arena and Magic Online on Jan. 28 with the full tabletop release on Feb. 5.