MTG Arena Zone Premium
MTG Arena Zone Premium
Blue Sun's Twilight

Phyrexia: All Will Be One Limited Set Review: Blue

J2SJosh reviews and rates every Blue Phyrexia: All Will Be One cards for limited!

Hey everyone! I am here to usher you to your destiny of becoming part of the Phyrexian collective. Join us, as we will all be one soon enough. Oh wait, sorry… I’ve been told that I am to hold off on helping you be compleat and review all of the cards for limited purposes in its place. I guess we can do that instead, but you’re really missing out because Phyrexians know how to party.

Seriously though, I love this time of each set. Everything is new and exciting; we get to make all kinds of wild speculations about what the format is going to turn out to be. They may not let me sleep (or go outside, I miss grass) until I finish these reviews, but it’s still a great time. So, without further ado, I present to you Phyrexia: All Will Be One the limited review.

Here’s the usual grading scale:

Aspirant’s Ascent

Rating: 2.0/5

My love for one mana tricks continues and this one is as tricksy as they come. Many a nonbeliever had a bad time after underrating Wings of the Cosmos in Kaldheim and while this doesn’t untap for the surprise defender, it could potentially be a lot better with toxic thrown in.

Multiple instances of toxic are cumulative so this goes off in addition to any toxic the creature already had. That means you could force a mite through for the precious last two poison counters or if you aspire to greater things (or just love to meme) you could use it on Paladin of Predation for a whopping seven poison counters in one hit.

Atmosphere Surgeon

Rating: 2.0/5

This surgeon expertly carves up your opponent by sending your creatures airborne. While I’m sure there’s a scientific explanation for it, I assume it’s like Secret of Mana and he just shoots them out of a cannon.

It’s usually better than Air Marshall because it doesn’t cost mana or have restrictions on who gets to fly. The problem is when you top deck it late in the game and it’s just a bad dork. One toughness is also a frowny face when Whisper of the Dross is floating around.

Blade of Shared Souls

Rating: 3.0/5

This would actually be pretty insane if it allowed you to copy any creature on the battlefield. Continually being able to turn your dorks into their best creature would make it extremely difficult to get through.

You also don’t get the comes into play effects from this so that’s another big downgrade from typical Clone effects. As it is, you need to have something worth copying on board and creatures worth upgrading to them if your For Mirrodin! Creature gets dealt with.

Blue Sun’s Twilight

Rating: 4.0/5

There really hasn’t ever been a format where a reasonably costed way to steal your opponent’s creature wasn’t a great card. This even has the benefit of not getting wrecked by a Disenchant.

There’s a good chance you just have to use this to steal something well before you can pay five, but if you do get to steal and copy something your opponent is going to be feeling quite blue (Da Ba Dee Da Ba Di). Though the only “I’m good” they will be saying at that point is about playing the rest of the game.

Bring the Ending

Rating: 2.5/5

While Quench has always been super situational, this is going to play much closer to Make Disappear which was a real star in SNC. There are going to be a lot of early game cards that you’ll want to counter so you don’t fall too far behind. Then later in the game, it really brings the end as a straight up hard counter for two mana.

Chrome Prowler

Rating: 2.5/5

Even a Phyrexianized cat still loves to pounce on unsuspecting entities that dare to walk into its territory. It’s great if you get to pick off an unsuspecting attacker, but provides a lot of options. You can hold up mana for counters or cantrips with the option to still drop this to clear the way for your army to rumble.

Distorted Curiosity

Rating: 3.0/5

You all know I’m down for a pushed Divination! You should be able to get this online pretty early on and I’m expecting it to play very similar to how Thoughtcast did back in original Mirrodin draft. Amazing at one mana, but still totally fine if you have to pay three.

Encroaching Mycosynth

Rating: 0.5/5

This is a constructed plant, but there are still some cute things you can do with it in limited. For example, you can cast any permanent with Slobad, Iron Goblin.

Alright you got me, there really isn’t much you can do with it since it says nonland. There would actually be a decent number of cool interactions if it included your lands, but c’est la vie.

Escaped Experiment

Rating: 2.0/5

This is an annoying curve filler that will wildly fluctuate in value based off of the board situation. Opponent only has one blocker and you have plenty of artifacts, great your side lives to do it again. Opponent has two creatures back; one blocks this and your other blocked creature lives. Not so great.

Experimental Augury

Rating: 2.5/5

Anticipate has always been on the cusp of card twenty-three, while Impulse has typically been very good.  Sometimes it’s the small differential that matters and this adds on proliferate which can be a much bigger deal than digging a card deeper. This can be a real player, especially in a toxic based deck.

Eye of Malcator

Rating: 2.0/5

If you have a decent number of artifacts then this can put a quick hurting on even if it is very unlikely to ever end up playing defense. The scry two is something, but not nearly enough if it doesn’t do much else. At least they activate each other if you have multiples.

Basically you need to be the beatdown to play this card.

Font of Progress

Rating: 1.0/5

This format would have to be drastically different than I am picturing it to have this be a viable win condition. Even if you proliferate a couple times, it’s still a slow clock that requires a large investment. There’s not even unearth to get value out of milling yourself with it. (I know there’s the Call of the Herd card with Flashback, but you’re telling me you are milling yourself hoping to hit that and have corrupted all so you can get a 3/3. I don’t think so.)

The only way I can see this working out is if you have Jace, the Perfected Mind and you’re just trying to get it to the point you can one shot them with it. Even then, not the best plan.

Gitaxian Anatomist

Rating: 2.0/5

If you’re an enjoyer of the large bottoms, then have I got a card for you. Seriously though it’s a solid blocker that can possibly give you proliferate value if you need that instead. Not great, but better than land eighteen.

Gitaxian Raptor

Rating: 2.0/5

I can’t make a clever girl comment on two raptors in row…or can I? This is pretty much the definition of a mediocre card that makes your deck, but you hope you don’t draw unless it’s the perfect situation. It’s alright as an early blocker and can even get one decent hit in, but just doesn’t do enough to get me excited about it.

Glistener Seer

Rating: 2.0/5

Coming down turn one means that it can possibly stop the first poison counter from getting through. That’s going to help stop the snowball that starts the moment they hit corrupted. It even lets you scry a few times to smooth out your draws. Not bad for one mana.

Ichor Synthesizer

Rating: 2.0/5

Another decent, but unspectacular early blocker. If you manage to incidentally get four counters on it through either casting non creature spells or proliferating, then a 3/3 unblockable is nothing to sneeze at. Just really bad to draw later in the game.  

Ichormoon Gauntlet

Rating: 1.0/5

Your first thought is “why is Josh crapping all over my dreams of a multiple planeswalker deck”. I have news for you, if you have multiple planeswalkers, it’s highly unlikely that this card is going to affect the outcome of the game.

Sure, you can do a mini-proliferate when you cast a noncreature, but it specifies permanent so you can’t even poison them. Let that poor rare drafter at the table take this for their collection.

Jace, the Perfected Mind

Rating: 4.0/5

Kind of an odd Planeswalker, but if you draw this with them having fifteen cards or less in their library, it’s instant game over. If you already have some defenses setup, Jace can uptick to shrink a creature and tick his loyalty ever higher towards the tipping point.

The middle ability is unlikely to ever do more than mill three, draw one in limited. It’s also not great when you’re behind, but a merely solid walker is still really good.

Malcator’s Watcher

Rating: 2.5/5

This can stave off some early attacks while replacing itself so it will be one of those cards that might end up playing much better than it looks similar to how Shambling Ghast did.

It’ll be one of those cards that people feel bad about trading for so they might not even attack into it. I’d have it higher, but there’s no Deadly Dispute in the set to really take advantage of it. Best I can do is Annihilating Glare and Chittering Skitterling.

Meldweb Curator

Rating: 2.0/5

Maybe if this curator was paid a living wage, they would bring the card back to hand instead of just to the top of your library. Obviously this is insane with most of the Sun’s Twilight cycle (per usual Urabrask declined comment when questioned on what happened with the red one). Still totally fine to just bring back a removal or card draw spell.

Meldweb Strider

Rating: 1.5/5

This gives me some real Futurist Sentinel vibes. Man, they sure do like to make questionable big, blue vehicles with high crew costs.

The one free activation can mitigate the downside of playing a vehicle because the threat of activation should prevent some attacks the turn it comes down. As long as you can proliferate that counter, this can do some things.

Mercurial Spelldancer

Rating: 4.0/5

Now this is a dance I want to be doing all night long. A 2/1 unblockable for two is worth the cost of admission, but after you cast some noncreature spells it’s about to get crazy over in the VIP section. It’s not hard to come up with some fantasies about doubling up on removal with Hexgold Slash or drawing four cards off of a Thrill of Possibility If you want to get really crazy, picture the result with Blue Sun's Twilight. Let your mind run wild and imagine the possibilities.

There are just a lot of cheap ways to deal with this. If they don’t have one though, it’s game over.

Mesmerizing Dose

Rating: 3.0/5

With the look in their eyes, I’m pretty sure what they are seeing is pretty far from a Charmed Sleep. As I’ve previously discussed, enchantment removal looks pretty good in this set and this throws in a proliferate trigger on top of that.  Good times…or at least I hope that’s what these people are having…

Mindsplice Apparatus

Rating: 1.0/5

I’m sure someone can whip out the dream scenario where you use this and a ton of cantrips like Prologue to Phyresis to poison “storm” your opponent out. It’s still a four mana do nothing the turn you play it and you need a critical mass of Instants and Sorceries to even consider playing this. Let the cube and commander players have their fun.

Minor Misstep

Rating: 1.0/5

While you think it might be more than a Minor Misstep to play this card, it at least has some sideboard potential as there are a decent number of cards this can actually counter. Catching someone with their pants down on an Annihilating Glare or a combat trick can feel really good.

Prologue to Phyresis

Rating: 2.0/5

I like that this lets you kick off the poison train without having to connect as there is a ton of proliferate floating around to abuse that with. You can’t go too wrong with a reasonably costed cantrip that does something useful. You just can’t have too much air in your deck.

I really like the flavor text, as it is something I frequently say to Floridamun when I talk him into playing some “alternative” cards during his streams.

Quicksilver Fisher

Rating: 2.5/5

This would have definitely been an uncommon a few years ago. Only having three in the butt doesn’t matter too much as it still dodges Hexgold Slash since it’s toxic-free. It does get handled by a lot of common removal, but at least you still get a loot out of it.

Reject Imperfection

Rating: 2.0/5

It’s our typical slightly better themed Cancel that we get every set. While I would rather have Bring the Ending, I don’t mind having this as a back up counter.  

Serum Snare

Rating: 2.5/5

Relatively cheap bounce spells play really well in a tempo-based format. Getting to blow out combat tricks, clear a blocker out of the way, or saving your guy from removal can all be worth a card. This even tosses in a proliferate if it’s CMC 3 or less.

Tamiyo’s Immobilizer

Rating: 3.0/5

A pumped-up Tumble Magnet that keeps getting refilled by proliferate can be pretty sexy. Time to get your Icy Manipulator on by keeping their biggest threat on lockdown. Of course, you can always do the end step tap, tap on my turn to force through lethal. Tamiyo knows what she’s up to.

Tamiyo’s Logbook

Rating: 1.5/5

I take back everything I just said about Tamiyo knowing what’s up. Her logbook says otherwise. Way too slow unless you get in a really long, grindy game.

Tekuthal, Inquiry Dominus

Rating: 4.5/5

Well, this looks like a good time for one side of the table. The stats on this are great for a flyer while the double proliferate is going to end the game quickly if you have any poison going on. Of course, that whole indestructible god thing might come up too.


Rating: 2.0/5

This can get the job done as long as you have things to proliferate. The absence of +1+1 counters in the format means that it’s not going to pull off any shenanigans where it keeps growing itself. Decent in some decks, bad in others.

Transplant Theorist

Rating: 2.0/5

If the format slows down a bit this could end up being a thing. It can block decently while slowly looting through your deck. It can also tell Jace, the Perfected Mind exactly what it thinks of him by becoming unmillable!

Trawler Drake

Rating: 2.0/5

If you’re playing this card, your deck needs to be able to survive playing a 1/1 on turn three. It can grow out of control quickly with proliferate cantrips like Experimental Augury adding two counters per spell. You just need to not fall too far behind while doing it.

Unctus, Grand Metatect

Rating: 3.0/5

I hate how this ability is as a sorcery because it makes combat much less complicated. It’s still really good as a way to craft your hand and pump up the jams.

The Phyrexian mana is interesting in this format because if you’re racing against poison, two life isn’t as deep of a cost as usual.

Unctus’s Retrofitter

Rating: 3.0/5

This doesn’t remove the text on the target so you can just turn your 1/1 mite into a 4/4 to bash. Of course, you could just curve Malcator's Watcher into this for a filthy beating. Turn three hasty Serra Angel. How you like me now?

The obvious other candidates include Skullbombs or Prophetic Prism.

Vivisurgeon’s Insight

Rating: 1.5/5

I might sideboard this in a grindy matchup, but in general this is too slow for what the format is trying to do.

Watchful Blisterzoa

Rating: 1.5/5

Death triggers are so much worse than enters the battlefield effects. This just feels like a bad Quicksilver Fisher. Six mana is really expensive and then they just slap Planar Disruption or Mesmerizing Dose on it so you get nothing.

Wrap Up

Blue is a very controlling color with a variety of instant speed cards to hold up including counterspells, card draw, and Chrome Prowler. While a lot of its creatures appear to be merely decent, it looks like a fantastic support color.

I’ll be back tomorrow with my Phyrexia: All Will Be One Limited Review of Black. Until then, stay classy Magic people!

If you have any questions, let me know in the comments below.

You can also find me at:

Enjoy our content? Wish to support our work? Join our Premium community, get access to exclusive content, remove all advertisements, and more!

MTG Arena Zone Premium

Josh is a member of the elite limited team The Draft Lab as well as the host of The Draft Lab Podcast. He was qualifying for Pro Tours, Nationals, and Worlds literally before some of you were born. After a Magic hiatus to play poker and go to medical school, he has been dominating Arena with over an 80% win percentage in Bo3 as well as making #1 rank in Mythic.

Articles: 160

Leave a Reply