MTG Lord of the Rings Tales of Middle-earth: Must Have Cards
MTG App Staff
23 Jun 2023
The release of Tales of Middle-earth has created much excitement among Magic: The Gathering players. While The One Ring remains the most sought-after card, there are several other excellent cards in the set that are worth discussing.
Today, we will explore ten captivating cards that players will be thrilled to open at Prereleases and beyond. Each of these cards offers unique gameplay elements, flavor, and potential applications in various formats, including Commander.
Last March of the Ents
Last March of the Ents is an enchantment spell that captures the essence of the iconic Ents in The Lord of the Rings. This borderless card showcases the incredible assault of the Ents on Isengard, providing players with a visually stunning piece of the story. One notable aspect of this card is that it can’t be countered, ensuring that its effect will always resolve.
When you cast Last March of the Ents, you get to draw cards equal to the greatest toughness among creatures you control. This card draw ability can be incredibly powerful, especially if you have high-toughness creatures in play. Drawing additional cards can provide you with more resources and options to dominate the game.
But the benefits of Last March of the Ents don’t stop at card draw. The spell also allows you to put any number of creature cards from your hand onto the battlefield. This ability can be a game-changer, especially if you have a hand full of powerful creatures waiting to be unleashed. Imagine the surprise on your opponents’ faces when you flood the battlefield with a horde of Ents, ready to march towards victory.
In Commander games, Last March of the Ents finds a natural home in decks that focus on Green strategies. It synergizes particularly well with cards like Craterhoof Behemoth, which can serve as a win condition by granting your creatures a massive power boost. Additionally, if you enjoy dealing damage through toughness-based strategies, Last March of the Ents pairs perfectly with cards like Doran, the Siege Tower at the helm of your deck.
The Party Tree
Get the Party Tree Proxy here.
The Party Tree, a re-skin of the popular Throne of Eldraine card, The Great Henge, makes its appearance in Tales of Middle-earth Collector Boosters. As a Commander player, you’ll be delighted to see this card, as it offers a wealth of benefits that fit perfectly within a Mono-Green strategy.
The Party Tree’s cost to cast is reduced by X, where X is the greatest power among creatures you control. This means that the more powerful creatures you have on the battlefield, the cheaper it becomes to cast The Party Tree. It rewards you for having formidable creatures in play and encourages you to build a strong board presence.
But the advantages of The Party Tree don’t end with its reduced cost. Once it’s on the battlefield, it provides you with two valuable resources: mana and life gain. By tapping The Party Tree, you can add two green mana to your mana pool, giving you extra resources to cast your spells and activate abilities. Additionally, you gain 2 life, which can help stabilize your life total and keep you in the game.
The Party Tree’s ability also triggers whenever a nontoken creature enters the battlefield under your control. This triggers two effects simultaneously: putting a +1/+1 counter on the entering creature and allowing you to draw a card. This combination of bolstering your creatures and providing card draw makes The Party Tree an exceptional card in Commander. It helps you build a formidable army while maintaining a healthy hand size, ensuring that you’re always in control of the game.
As part of the Realms and Relics series, The Party Tree offers a flavorful re-skin of The Great Henge. Whether you’re a fan of The Lord of the Rings or simply enjoy playing Mono-Green strategies, The Party Tree is a card that will be highly sought after. So get ready to celebrate and raise a toast to the power of The Party Tree.
Valley of Gorgoroth (Wasteland)
Valley of Gorgoroth, a reskin of the powerful card Wasteland, emerges as a key inclusion in Commander decks within The Lord of the Rings: Tales of Middle-earth. As a land that disrupts your opponents’ mana base, Valley of Gorgoroth plays a crucial role in mana denial strategies, favoring aggressive players who seek to maintain board dominance and impede their opponents’ progress.
One of the primary advantages of Valley of Gorgoroth, akin to its predecessor Wasteland, is its ability to keep both players on a lower land count. This dynamic works in favor of the aggressive player who already has efficient creatures on the battlefield and aims to prevent their opponents from developing their boards. By strategically targeting and destroying nonbasic lands, Valley of Gorgoroth allows you to hinder your opponents’ mana development and limit their options.
Furthermore, Valley of Gorgoroth possesses the potential to randomly disrupt your opponent’s mana base, especially when you have multiple copies in the early turns of the game. This disruption can lead to situations where your opponent struggles to access specific colors of mana, compromising their ability to cast certain spells or execute key strategies. For example, denying double-black mana for a Shardless opponent or hindering a 12-post deck by targeting a Cloudpost can significantly impact your opponent’s game plan.
The efficiency of mana denial becomes even more pronounced when complemented by additional disruptive elements such as counterspells like Daze, hatebears like Thalia, Guardian of Thraben, or the recursive capabilities of Life from the Loam in more control-oriented decks. The ability to control the timing and usage of Valley of Gorgoroth amplifies its asymmetrical impact. While your opponent loses a land, you have the agency to decide precisely when to activate and play the land destruction.
Mithril Coat, the exciting new equipment featured in Tales of Middle-earth, offers outstanding protection to a legendary creature you control. This extended art card showcases the iconic coat that played a crucial role in protecting Frodo from being assassinated by Saruman at Bag End. Now, you can wield this legendary coat and enhance your strategies centered around legendary creatures.
When Mithril Coat enters the battlefield, it automatically attaches itself to a target legendary creature you control. This attachment grants the equipped creature indestructible, making it impervious to destruction. This ability can be a game-changer, as it allows your legendary creature to survive board wipes, targeted removal spells, and combat damage.
The indestructibility provided by Mithril Coat not only ensures the longevity of your commander but also creates a powerful deterrent for your opponents. They will think twice before engaging in combat or attempting to remove your legendary creature from the battlefield, knowing that their efforts will be in vain.
In addition to the protective aspect, Mithril Coat also bestows the equipped creature with indestructibility. This further enhances the survivability of your legendary creature and solidifies its role as a formidable force on the battlefield. Your opponents will find it challenging to deal with a creature that cannot be destroyed by conventional means.
Equipping Mithril Coat requires an equip cost of 3 mana. Once equipped, the legendary creature gains indestructible and becomes an even more potent threat. This allows you to continue applying pressure and dictating the flow of the game, confident in the knowledge that your key creature is protected and ready to strike.
Cavern-Hoard Dragon, a card exclusive to the Hosts of Mordor Commander Precon, is generating a lot of excitement in Commander circles leading up to the release of Tales of Middle-earth. Dragons have always been a popular creature type in Magic: The Gathering, and this legendary Dragon offers a unique twist by rewarding players with Treasure tokens.
The cost to cast Cavern-Hoard Dragon is reduced by X, where X is the greatest number of artifacts an opponent controls. This means that the more artifacts your opponent has, the cheaper it becomes to summon this fearsome Dragon onto the battlefield. It’s a cost reduction mechanic that plays into the theme of dragons amassing hoards of treasure.
Once Cavern-Hoard Dragon enters the battlefield, it showcases its impressive abilities. With flying, trample, and haste, this Dragon is a force to be reckoned with. It can soar through the skies, trample over defenders, and attack immediately upon entering the battlefield. Its presence demands attention and respect from your opponents.
But what truly sets Cavern-Hoard Dragon apart is its ability to generate Treasure tokens. Whenever the Dragon deals combat damage to a player, you create a Treasure token for each artifact that player controls. This ability synergizes perfectly with the dragon theme, as Dragons are often associated with amassing wealth and hoarding treasure. The more artifacts your opponent has, the greater the riches you acquire.
Treasure tokens are versatile resources that can be sacrificed to produce mana of any color. This additional source of mana can fuel your spells and activate powerful abilities, giving you a significant advantage over your opponents. Not only does Cavern-Hoard Dragon provide a powerful threat on the battlefield, but it also rewards you with the means to further strengthen your position.
Gandalf the White
Universes Beyond brings us a showcase version of the beloved Gandalf the White, one of the headline Mythic Rare cards from Tales of Middle-earth. Gandalf the White’s arrival is met with excitement and anticipation, as he always arrives precisely when he means to, just like in The Lord of the Rings.
Gandalf the White’s showcase version features stunning artwork by Dominik Mayer, capturing the essence of this iconic character in vivid detail. The showcase treatment elevates the visual appeal of the card, making it a highly sought-after and collectible version.
What makes this iteration of Gandalf an excellent card is his unique ability that mimics the popular artifact Panharmonicon. With Gandalf on the battlefield, you gain the ability to cast legendary spells and artifact spells as though they had flash. This offers incredible flexibility and opens up a wealth of tactical options.
In addition to the flash ability, Gandalf the White provides another powerful effect. Whenever a legendary permanent or an artifact entering or leaving the battlefield triggers a triggered ability of a permanent you control, that ability triggers an additional time. This ability resembles Panharmonicon’s effect of doubling triggered abilities, allowing you to maximize the value you gain from your legendary and artifact permanents.
Shelob, Child of Ungoliant
Shelob, Child of Ungoliant, emerges from the dark corners of Tales of Middle-earth as a compelling and formidable option for players who enjoy casting Spider cards and embracing the eerie allure of the arachnids. This extended art card showcases the deadly nature of Shelob, the legendary Spider Demon, and captures the attention of both casual and competitive Commander players.
Deathtouch and ward are the defining abilities of Shelob, making her a force to be reckoned with on the battlefield. Other Spiders you control also gain deathtouch and ward 2, further emphasizing the deadly nature of your arachnid army. Ward 2 imposes an additional cost of two generic mana on any spell or ability that targets your Spider creatures, ensuring that opponents must pay a higher price to disrupt your plans.
But Shelob’s power extends beyond her own abilities. Whenever another creature dealt damage this turn by a Spider you control dies, you create a token that’s a copy of that creature. However, there’s a twist to these tokens—they transform into Food artifacts with the ability to sacrifice for life gain. This unique transformation adds a flavorful touch to the gameplay, reflecting Shelob’s sinister nature of trapping and consuming her prey.
For casual Commander players and fans of The Lord of the Rings, Shelob, Child of Ungoliant will be a popular card to acquire upon release. Her presence enhances Spider-themed decks, synergizing well with other Spider cards such as Ishkanah, Grafwidow, Arachnogenesis, and Blex, Vexing Pest. Building an army of deadly Spiders and generating valuable Food tokens adds both strategic depth and thematic immersion to your gameplay.
Delighted Halfling, a charming Hobbit creature, emerges in Tales of Middle-earth as a delightful addition to various Commander strategies. This card offers a unique twist on mana acceleration and spellcasting, making it an appealing choice for players who enjoy Legendary-themed decks or simply want to add a touch of Hobbit flavor to their gameplay.
Delighted Halfling boasts two mana-producing abilities, each with its own distinct advantage. Firstly, by tapping Delighted Halfling, you can add one colorless mana to your mana pool. This versatile mana can be used to cast a variety of spells and activate abilities, providing you with flexibility in your gameplay decisions.
The second ability of Delighted Halfling is where its true power lies. By tapping Delighted Halfling and spending the mana it produces, you can add one mana of any color. However, this mana can only be used to cast legendary spells, and those spells become uncounterable. This unique restriction emphasizes the Halfling’s affinity for legendary matters, allowing you to cast legendary spells with confidence and circumvent any pesky countermagic from your opponents.
The combination of mana acceleration and uncounterable spellcasting provides significant advantages in Commander games. It enables you to ramp up your resources and cast powerful legendary spells without the fear of them being countered. This can be particularly potent when playing with legendary creatures, artifacts, or enchantments that have game-changing abilities or enter-the-battlefield effects.
Delighted Halfling finds a natural home in Green-heavy decks with a heavy emphasis on legendary themes. It synergizes exceptionally well with commanders like Aragorn, the Uniter, who thrives on the casting of legendary spells. Additionally, players who are looking to pick up and enhance the Food and Fellowship Preconstructed Deck, which revolves around Hobbits and their love for multiple meals, will find Delighted Halfling to be a valuable addition.
Prepare to meet the Orcish Bowmasters, a formidable addition to your Tales of Middle-earth collection. This borderless card brings a fierce new creature to the battlefield, capable of disrupting your opponents’ card advantage while amassing an army of Orcs.
As Orcish Bowmasters enters the battlefield, and whenever an opponent draws a card except the first one they draw each turn, it deals 1 damage to any target. This ability allows you to chip away at your opponent’s life total or take down problematic creatures. With each card your opponents draw beyond their initial draw step, the Bowmasters retaliate with a swift arrow.
But that’s not all—the Orcish Bowmasters also have an amassing ability. Whenever it deals damage, you amass Orcs. This means that for each point of damage the Bowmasters deal, you create an Orc Army token. These tokens represent a growing force under your command, ready to overwhelm your opponents.
Orcish Bowmasters find their place in both competitive and casual play. In competitive formats like Modern and Historic, where card advantage is crucial, this card provides a disruptive element that can hinder your opponents’ strategies. By punishing your opponents for drawing additional cards, you can slow down their game plan and gain an advantage.
In casual Commander games, Orcish Bowmasters offer a unique and aggressive playstyle. It rewards you for exploiting the fundamental aspect of Magic: drawing cards. The more cards your opponents draw, the more damage the Bowmasters can deal, and the more Orc Army tokens you amass. This can quickly turn the tide of the game in your favor, especially when combined with other Orc-themed cards or token synergies.
Sol Ring (Elven, Dwarven, Human)
The iconic Sol Ring makes a special appearance in Tales of Middle-earth, offering players an incredible variation of this immensely powerful card. As one of the most coveted cards in Magic: The Gathering, Sol Ring has become a staple in Commander decks, providing a significant boost to mana acceleration. With the release of Tales of Middle-earth, players will have the opportunity to acquire exclusive versions of Sol Ring inspired by different races of Middle-earth.
The Elven Sol Ring, available in non-foil and double rainbow foil versions, pays homage to the elegant and mystical High Elves of Middle-earth. With only 3000 copies in non-foil and 300 copies in double rainbow foil, the Elven Sol Ring becomes a highly sought-after collector’s item. Adorned with Tengwar letterforms, the Elven Sol Ring captures the essence of Elven craftsmanship and their deep connection to magic.
The Dwarven Sol Ring, available in non-foil and double rainbow foil versions, represents the industrious and tenacious Dwarves of Middle-earth. With 7000 copies in non-foil and 700 copies in double rainbow foil, the Dwarven Sol Ring offers a more widely available but still highly desirable option. Emblazoned with Dwarven symbols, this version of Sol Ring showcases the meticulous craftsmanship and resourcefulness of the Dwarven race.
The Human Sol Ring, available in non-foil and double rainbow foil versions, represents the versatile and adaptable nature of the Humans of Middle-earth. With 9000 copies in non-foil and 900 copies in double rainbow foil, the Human Sol Ring provides a readily accessible option for players. Designed with symbols and motifs inspired by the various cultures of Humans in Middle-earth, this version of Sol Ring showcases the diversity and unity of humanity.
These exclusive versions of Sol Ring offer players a chance to acquire a truly unique and collectible card. Whether you align yourself with the elegance of the Elves, the resilience of the Dwarves, or the versatility of the Humans, there is a Sol Ring variant that resonates with your chosen race or simply complements the aesthetics of your deck.
Sol Ring remains a cornerstone of mana acceleration and an essential tool in Commander formats. Its ability to produce two colorless mana at such a low cost has made it a must-have inclusion in countless decks. The availability of these race-themed Sol Rings in Tales of Middle-earth adds an extra layer of flavor and customization to your gameplay experience.
The One Ring (Extended)
Unsurprisingly, The One Ring stands as the card that captures everyone’s attention and stirs the greatest excitement in Tales of Middle-earth. As the centerpiece of the set, The One Ring holds immense allure, even if the one-of-one copy may be out of reach for most players. Its extended art version, however, provides a visually stunning representation of this iconic artifact.
The One Ring possesses indestructibility, symbolizing the invincible nature of this legendary artifact from The Lord of the Rings. When The One Ring enters the battlefield, granting you protection from everything until your next turn. This extraordinary ability shields you from harm, rendering you impervious to any targeted spells or abilities from your opponents. It is a true testament to the immense power and significance of The One Ring in the world of Middle-earth.
But the power of The One Ring comes at a price. At the beginning of your upkeep, you lose 1 life for each burden counter on The One Ring. This mechanic represents the toll the ring takes on its bearer, gradually draining their life force. However, in return for this sacrifice, The One Ring provides a source of power and knowledge. By tapping The One Ring, you can add a burden counter to it and draw a card for each burden counter on it. This ability reflects the corrupting influence of The One Ring, which tempts its bearer with unimaginable power and knowledge.
While The One Ring may find its place in competitive decks that utilize Karn, the Great Creator, its true appeal lies in its immersive and flavorful nature. Playing The One Ring allows you to immerse yourself in the rich lore of Middle-earth and experience the weight of wielding such a powerful artifact. It serves as a reminder of the central role The One Ring played in The Lord of the Rings narrative and evokes a sense of awe and reverence.
With the release of Tales of Middle-earth, the anticipation for the new set grows. While The One Ring remains the pinnacle, there are several other cards that offer exciting gameplay and collectible value. From Last March of the Ents and The Party Tree to Mithril Coat and Gandalf the White, each card brings unique abilities and flavor to the table.
Whether you’re a competitive player or a fan of The Lord of the Rings, the diverse range of cards in this set ensures there’s something for everyone.