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MTG Modern Horizons 3 card can turn enemies into Elks

A reference to an infamous banned planeswalker, this new MTG Modern Horizons 3 card can make opposing creatures into unhelpful elks.

A sneaky shapeshifting elk

With Modern Horizons 3 spoilers dropping each day, we thought the card Trickster’s Elk deserved special attention. This new card can either come down as a creature, or be used as an enchantment that turns an opposing threat into a (relatively) useless elk. And if it falls off for any reason, it becomes an elk on your own side of the field.

Anyone familiar with recent MTG set history will recognise this card as a reference to one of Magic: The Gathering’s more infamous design flubs, the MTG planeswalker card Oko, Thief of Crowns. This three mana planeswalker had dramatically undercosted loyalty abilities, which made it a nightmare to get rid of.

Until this card was stuck on the MTG banlist (for six formats now) Oko was a terrifying dominant force, able to make blockers to protect himself, and neuter all your good creatures, ticking up in loyalty all the while.

Apparently, Wizards thought players would mainly use Oko’s +1 transformation ability to turn their own food tokens into 3/3 elks, ignoring the fact that it could be used as an incredibly effective weapon.

Now that the card’s been banned, it’s become more of an amusing footnote than an infuriating scourge, and players often joke about the elkpocalypse, a more dangerous threat than the Phyrexians or Eldrazi.

But is the joke still funny when the ‘suits’ start getting in on it? Colossal Dreadmaw survives as a meme despite Wizards making a couple of cards that are clear nods to it, but if Wizards makes two more elk cards, we think they’ll officially be flogging a dead horse (I realize I’m risking confusion here, introducing a second four-legged animal to the paragraph).

We’re excited by some of the MTG Modern Horizons 3 cards we’ve seen so far – not least our own exclusive preview. Check out the new planeswalker cards, and the precon commanders for starters!