The art for the Godless Shrine card, an Orzhov land. Image courtesy of Wizards of the Coast.

The Orzhov Syndicate: Your Debt Will Be Paid

After Dimir (the best and only way to correctly play Magic the Gathering), Orzhov is a close second-best color combo to play. As the second guild to be announced in Ravnica Allegiance, we get a look into it’s new mechanic.

Orzhov features black and white, the colors of life and death. White embodies justice and rejuvenation. It is the color of hieromancers (law mages) and healing priests. On the other hand, black is the color of death, decay, and necromancy. Put them together and you have the very essence of what the Orzhov guild represents: serve the cause until death, and then keep serving. Death is no obstacle when it comes to getting the job done.

As the new Ravnica Allegiance trailer says, “Do you think death would free you of your obligation?” Think again. Orzhov for life (and death).

Images courtesy of Wizards of the Coast.

Serve During Life and the Afterlife

The new mechanic for the Orzhov guild says it all. If your body fails, your spirit can still be of some use for the cause.

Image courtesy of Wizards of the Coast.

Afterlife X – when this creature dies, create X 1/1 white and black Spirit creature tokens with flying.

The only cards spoiled right now have Afterlife 1, meaning you get one 1/1 spirit, but the announcement says that depending on the creature you can get more than one spirit after death.

Afterlife is turning out to be a really cool mechanic. It’s weakness, however, is that the creature has to die. That means bouncing it (making it leave the battlefield to go to your hand) or exiling it won’t cause Afterlife to trigger.

I foresee this mechanic being strong for drafts, as it not only gives you more creatures for your limited number of cards, but it also creates flyers. Flyers are great during drafts because your opponent might not have been lucky enough to draw many, if any, flyers or creatures with reach of their own to block with.

I’m definitely going to draft Orzhov for Prerelease. How about you?