Modern Horizons 2 Set Review

Modern Horizons 2 Set Review

The original Modern Horizons is one of my favourite sets of all time. It was complex, novel and filled with creative designs that pushed boundaries. I’m very excited to explore the sequel and see if it can meet the high bar set by the first set.

Like my normal set reviews, I focus on fun and original cards and dissect the designs. This is a list of my favourite cards, which isn’t necessarily the most powerful cards for constructed formats.

Top Rares and Mythics

Garth One-Eye

Black Lotus is by far the most iconic magic card of all time, but most of us will never see one, let alone play with one. This card is part of the much hated reserve list, and the massive burst of mana Black Lotus gives you for no investment makes it one of the most powerful cards of all time. Creating copies of cards by name is common-place in digital card games that aren’t bound by the restraints of a physical card game. Magic has never done this before, and now it’s being done six times on one card. Even if the chosen cards were terrible this would be a landmark card in the history of the game. The fact that one of the six is unprintable and probably the greatest magic card ever made is just mind-blowing.

Arena was Magic’s first ever novel, and Garth was the main character. When this book was written, only one Magic set had been released, so readers only saw Garth use Magic from Alpha. When designing Garth, they decided that this limitation would still apply. This is why all six spells on Garth are indeed from Alpha. The selection isn’t simply the most iconic spells in each colour but has been chosen to give Garth a really flexible suite of options to choose from. Having said that, I think I would always choose Black Lotus first, even if Shivan Dragon or Terror would win the game for me immediately. Requiring all five colours of mana and being a tap ability shuts down the explosive starts that make Black Lotus broken, but I can’t imagine passing the opportunity to play with one when it comes up.

Urza’s Saga

If you thought Garth was weird, Modern Horizons is just getting warmed up. One of the first cards previewed for Modern Horizons, this is possibly the strangest Magic card ever printed. Players have been asking for an enchantment land for a long time which would be a big boost to casual enchantment themed decks. The original artifact lands like Great Furnace are banned in Modern because they make it too easy to get a critical mass of artifacts on the board. Since decks need lands anyway, this free synergy comes at no cost when deck-building. Urza’s Saga however comes with multiple costs. It doesn’t tap for coloured mana, and sacrifices itself after a few turns. Unless you have access to really powerful artifacts like Sol Ring or Mana Crypt this will be less reliable at generating mana than ordinary lands.

There’s a lot more to Urza’s Saga though. It can create the same constructs that we saw on Karn, Scion of Urza and Urza, Lord High Artificer which is obviously very fitting for flavour. The last ability can also be used flavourfully to search up cards like Urza’s Bauble or Urza’s Chalice although there are far more powerful things you can get with this saga. Notice that the developers have been very deliberate to specify specific costs. This means it can’t get artifact lands or coloured artifacts which I find very interesting. It makes the card more balanced than the usual wording that cares about mana value, but it does add to the weirdness.

The art and the type line however are my favourite parts of the card. Urza’s Saga was a block that started life as an enchantment matters block but the artifacts in the set were so powerful and broken that they overshadowed the enchantments. Being an enchantment that cares about artifacts is really fitting. Urza’s is one of the strangest sub types in the game, created only to make Urza’s Mine and friends work neatly with in the rules. Everything about this type line is bizarre. The art however is incredible. Off all the cards in the set, this is the one I recommend zooming in on the most. There are lots of hidden details and references. The notes and diagrams are layered on top of one another, representing different parts of Urza’s life.

Academy Manufactor

Shadows over Innistrad introduced clue tokens with the investigate mechanic. The idea of tokens you could trade in for an effect proved to be fruitful ground for designers. Treasure tokens debuted in Ixalan and became evergreen whilst food was a really evocative part of our time on Eldraine. All of these tokens can be additional effects and bonuses on cards that might otherwise fall short. For example Press for Answers would normally be too situational even in limited, but adding investigate makes it a far more interesting common. For the first time Modern Horizons gives us cards that combine clues, treasure and food.

The green-blue draft archetype is junk tokens. The plan of this deck is to create lots of fairly unimportant tokens and find creative ways to use them. Academy Manufactor gives you three tokens for the price of one, which should mean you will never run out of tokens. It gets absurd in multiples or with Fae Offering. What can you do with these tokens? Almost anything you want. Combine Chrysalis gives you an army of beasts, Glimmer Bairn becomes enormous and Junk Winder becomes both really cheap and able to tap down an army. This looks like a really fun deck to draft.

Piru, the Volatile

Hot on the heels of Strixhaven, it may seem ordinary to have Elder Dragons, but in fact this is only the fifth set in history to have new Elder Dragons. These iconic creatures like Nicol Bolas and Chromium debuted in Legends, the set that introduced both gold cards and legendary creatures. The five dragons printed here inspired what became Commander, one of the most popular ways to play magic, which is why a new Elder Dragon that harkens back to the original cycle is so exciting.

Piru is the first Elder Dragon since Legends to have the classic drawback of an upkeep cost. In the distant past creatures were weaker than they are today and often much weaker. Powerful creatures would have jarring drawbacks. I love that Piru keeps the drawback to fit in with the original cycle. In modern magic this extra cost would be unacceptable, so the designers have been clever and given Piru a powerful death trigger. If attacking with a huge dragon isn’t doing it for you, you can deal seven damage to all non-legendary creatures. This is already great, but if you fill your deck with legendaries this can be a one-sided board-wipe. The icing on the cake is the fact that Piru has lifelink which gains you a phenomenal amount of life. This call back to a classic Magic draw-back becomes a potent ability under the lens of modern card design.

Another old fashioned design is Moderation. Cards that set rules and restrictions on the game used to be much more abundant. It was exciting that the rules of the game could change as you played. As time went on, it became clear that most players don’t enjoy these restrictions that stop them playing their cards. Moderation is a fascinating compromise. It comes with a challenging drawback but the reward for playing along with the stipulation is also very strong. It applies only to yourself, so you can enjoy the puzzle of building a deck around it without opponents having their decks shut down. There are plenty of ways of playing around the restriction like using activated abilities to spend excess mana and using instants on your opponent’s turn. I must also highlight how perfect the name is.

Grist, the Hunger Tide

Grist was leaked on the internet and I didn’t believe it was a real card. Planeswalkers are really evocative cards and can be the centrepiece of a deck, but they usually lack artifact or creature typings that would make them even more synergistic. Karn, the Great Creator isn’t an artifact and Ugin, the Spirit Dragon is neither a spirit or a dragon. There aren’t any insect tribal payoffs that benefit Grist, but this opens the door for planeswalkers in better supported tribes. I doubt Karn will ever become an artifact given how many powerful and broken artifact synergies there are in Magic, but this planeswalker/creature hybrid ability has many intriguing possibilities.

Grist excites different players for very different reasons. Competitive players will look at cards like Collected Company and Green Sun’s Zenith which can now find a planeswalker which is weird. Grist is also neat flavourwise as a shambling mass of insects that can combine to form a planeswalker. Grist will also lead to a small rules change so that it acts as a creature when choosing your commander. I’ve never liked the ugly rules text that planeswalkers like Freyalise, Llanowar’s Fury have, but this type of ability is far cooler.


There are seven non-land cards in this set that don’t have mana costs. This is a record if you ignore things like conspiracies and contraptions. As the wonderful reminder text on Evermind tells us, spells without mana costs can’t be played. Almost all of these uncastable spells in Magic’s history have suspend. There are six of these in Modern Horizon. These are all powerful and exciting cards. Gaea’s Will is a version of Yawgmoth’s Will in green. Yawgmoth’s Will is a really iconic card, but it’s not really a black card. Black is the colour of reanimating creatures, but it can’t recur other types of cards as well. Green gets Regrowth effects all the time, so I support this colour shift.

The best part of doing this review in a written format is that I avoid having to pronounce Asmoranomardicadaistinaculdacar. This legendary chef appeared in flavour text on Granite Gargoyle way back in Alpha. Fans have been asking for her to have a card ever since, but we were told her name was too long to fit on a Magic card. It turns out if she doesn’t have a mana cost, it does fit! This makes her only the second of “the uncastables” that doesn’t have suspend in black border after Evermind. Her first ability lets her be cast from your hand or the command-zone which is a clever way to make the card work in commander without the ugliness of referencing the command zone. I expect she will be very strong in constructed as cycling Street Wraith gives you a trivial way to cast her on turn one which is mad. Amusingly the last ability forces a creature to damage itself because they couldn’t fit in Asmoranomardicadaistinaculdacar’s name.

Geyadrone Dihada

My favourite planeswalkers are those whose abilities are all thematically tied together. We recently saw Tibalt, Cosmic Imposter in Kaldheim who exiles cards with all three of his abilities and granted you an emblem that let you cast those cards. I loved the cohesion between the abilities and I think Geyadrone is even better. She is a demonic planeswalker famous for corrupting other powerful beings and her card does an excellent job of representing this. Her first two loyalty abilities let you put corruption counters on other permanents. Her static ability protects her from those who are corrupted and her ultimate takes control of all of the corrupted permanents. I like that her static ability doesn’t protect you from the corrupted which feels very fitting for an evil and selfish character.

The face of the set is Dakkon, Shadow Slayer whose story is intertwined with Geyadrone and other legends in this set. It’s always good to see old planeswalkers who had only appeared as legendary creatures getting a planeswalker card at last. Dakkon has only had to wait twenty-seven years for this to happen! His first ability is a very fitting call back to Dakkon Blackblade even if it does feel out of place on a card in these colours in the modern colour pie.

Priest of Fell Rites

Ever since Animate Dead in Alpha, black mages have dreamt of cheating huge monsters into play from the graveyard. Despite how powerful reanimation strategies can be, they don’t make up a big part of the Modern format. The original Modern Horizons was originally designed as a spiritual successor to the madness of Future Sight and being an addition to the Modern format was a later change. It’s clear however that the sequel is built from the ground up to support archetypes like reanimator. The black and white cards that support this strategy aren’t just supporting a draft archetype but are intended to power up the archetype in modern.

There is a wealth of options for this deck. Persist and Unmarked Grave are clearly designed to work together. Adding the non-legendary rider to these cards helps moderate the power level since the best creatures to reanimate are often legendary. Cards like Griselbrand and Iona, Shield of Emeria are back-breaking and being forced to use other creatures makes the Modern version of the deck distinct and different from reanimator in other formats. Priest of Fell Rites however is much more interesting to me. It costs the same amount of mana as Persist but adding unearth makes it far cooler. Unburial Rites is one of my favourite cards of all time because it can be used twice. It can be milled to effectively draw a card and it can be discarded without losing its value. Priest of Fell Rites does all of this except it can also be played on turn two. I can’t wait to play this in my reanimator deck.

Top Commons and Uncommons

Abiding Grace

I am just in love with Abiding Grace. It’s my favourite art in the set and almost certainly my favourite art of 2021. It’s so good I would probably play it if the text box was blank. Fortunately it isn’t blank. You can lock your opponent out of combat with Spore Frog or just make a huge demon with Archfiend’s Vessel. I look forward to seeing what players can do with this beautiful card. It’s also nice to see Serra’s Realm again. The age of planeswalkers being so powerful they can create their own planes is long gone, but I loved the lore of planes like Serra’s Realm that were unstable because they lacked all five colours of mana.

Honourable mentions go to Profane Tutor and Graceful Restoration which are also fantastic. Profane Tutor is hard to evaluate. Being forced to suspend a tutor makes it weaker, but getting any card you want from your library is so powerful that this hoop is probably worth jumping through. Graceful Restoration is a really interesting reanimation spell for limited. It’s hard to get the traditional reanimation plan of cheating a huge creature into play to work in draft because of all the different moving parts you need. Getting back two copies of Breathless Knight in particular is a nice plan for draft players.

Squirrel Sovereign

This little squirrel is one of the cutest creatures to grace a magic card. It’s also an important card in the green-black squirrel-tribal archetype. One of my favourite parts of the original Modern Horizons was the interesting mix of archetypes. Ninjas fleshed out a tribe that was criminally under-supported when we first saw them in the Kamigawa block. The snow archetype was the first time we had snow cards created under modern design paradigms and the changeling archetype did strange things like play King of the Pride as its only true cat. Modern Horizons 2 uses more conventional archetypes which is a disappointment for me, but I’m so glad we got squirrels as the one really offbeat draft archetype.

I featured Helica Glider in my Ikoria review as a landmark marking the return of squirrels to black border, but I would never have believed squirrels could become an entire draft archetype in a set. There are some really fun ways to make more squirrels to support the Squirrel Sovereign. Chatterstorm is a smaller, cuter Empty the Warrens whilst Scurry Oak can go infinite with many things, including the humble Ivy Lane Denizen. I assume this tribal deck isn’t the strongest draft archetype in the set when you could be playing with broken mechanics like storm or affinity, but it’s my favourite and I would love to draft an army of fluffy critters.

Galvanic Relay

Storm is one of the most broken mechanics of all time, but storm decks require bursts of card draw and mana to create the explosive plays they are famous for. Storm is usually restricted to only the most powerful constructed formats and the most powerful of cubes. Even masters sets like Eternal Masters steered clear of storm. Modern Horizons 2 however treats storm like any other draft archetype. There are only a handful of cards with storm in the set but cards like Goblin Anarchomancer give red-green the tools they need to bring storm to life in a high-powered, but otherwise normal draft environment.

The big feature of storm decks is that one explosive turn when you cast lots of spells and win the game. The final card you play has storm and gets copied many times. It almost doesn’t matter what that card does and even small minor effects can be broken. Temporal Fissure looks harmless but is banned in pauper. In fact when storm has seen print in recent years it’s restricted to cards that are reactive and can’t function as win conditions such as Weather the Storm in the original Modern Horizons.

The reason I love Galvanic Relay is that it breaks the traditional one-turn paradigm of storm. It gives storm access to lots of card draw which after fast mana is something storm decks are always hungry for. The trade off is that the deck needs to go off on two consecutive turns which is harder and makes the deck weaker. It probably makes the deck more fun though because in a normal storm deck the first time you have a big turn the game ends and you don’t get to play on. I look forward to seeing what this card can do.

Phantasmal Dreadmaw

Sometimes the simplest cards are the most amusing. Blue creatures are typically weaker and smaller than creatures in other colours. The big exception are the phantasmal illusions like Phantasmal Bear and Phantasmal Dragon. These get higher power and toughness than normal creatures but have a unique vulnerability to spells and abilities. Many different spells can be repurposed to answer the dreadmaw such as Shock, auras or pump spells but if they can’t find an answer the dinosaur is going to do a lot of damage. This is a fitting homage to Colossal Dreadmaw which is a very sweet common. It’s the perfect power level for a common and has both the elegant symmetry of every number being a six together with an exciting creature type.

Another nice homage is Healer’s Flock. Llanowar Tribe was one of the cards I reviewed in my Modern Horizons set review. Healer’s Flock follows the same formula of taking a one drop creature and trebling it. Healer’s Hawk was a good card but I would have loved to see a triple Doomed Traveler or Thraben Inspector. I expect all of these would be too good, but they are undeniably more iconic. I hope this trend continues and we see these triple creatures for the other colours in the future.

Drossforge Bridge

2021 has been the year of common duals. Kaldheim gave us snow duals and Strixhaven introduced campuses with a powerful scry ability. Probably best of all are the new bridges. Together with the original artifact lands and the other new land Power Depot it has never been easier to make a deck that is entirely made of artifacts. I love how balanced these cards are. Being an artifact powers up many different synergies like metalcraft or affinity and even delirium appreciates the second typing. Being indestructible is really powerful if the land is animated with an effect like Ensoul Artifact but having tap lands in your deck is a real cost. These will be really interesting picks in draft given the number of synergies they have and how many powerful cards there are that you might want to splash. There is even a five colour archetype using converge cards like Sweep the Skies and Radiant Epicure that is trying to grab as many of these lands as possible.

I love that these bridges are set on Mirrodin. The indestructible mechanic debuted in the Darksteel set and most of the cards it was on featured the material Darksteel. Mirrodin is an iconic plane made of metal and famous for an indestructible material, so it makes perfect sense why these lands would be artifacts and indestructible from a flavour perspective as well as a mechanical one.

Ethersworn Sphinx

One of my favourite parts of the original Modern Horizons was the cards that combined mechanics that had never appeared in the same set before. This creates new designs that would never exist without these sets. Where as only three cards did this in the first set, there are far more this time around. Ethersworn Sphinx is my favourite of the bunch. Cascade and Affinity interact in the best possible way. You can reduce the cost of the spell without it preventing you from cascading into a eight mana spell. Cascade is typically one of two things. It’s either a fun source of value or being used in degenerate ways to cast spells like Restore Balance that don’t have mana costs. I like the sphinx because it must be impossible to be make it degenerate. With cheap cascade cards like Shardless Agent you can avoid a few mana costs to control what you cascade into. You can’t build a playable deck that can cast a nine-mana spell while doing this with the sphinx. I love that this card combines two broken mechanics to make something that is fun but fair.

It isn’t simply about having two mechanics one card, but about how they combine and interact. Other examples I like are Arcbound Slasher and Funnel-Web Recluse. Modular and riot work together seamlessly whilst the spider uses mechanics from two different Innistrad sets so it feels like they belong together.

Foul Watcher

My next card is also a mix and match design. Delirium is my favourite graveyard mechanic of all time. It was a flavour home-run in the Shadows over Innistrad block representing the people of Innistrad going mad. It also encourages creative deck building with out being prescriptive. Like most graveyard strategies mill is good, but discarding and sacrificing are great at getting a specific missing card type into your graveyard. You can play a mix of card types and delirium should happen naturally over time. You can look at cards that have multiple card types like artifact creatures or use the rare tribal type as seen on the new card Altar of the Goyf. Another option is to find enchantments, lands and artifacts that put themselves into the graveyard. This variety of approaches means no two delirium decks have to look the same.

Foul Watcher only gets a small bonus from delirium but the surveil ability is very nice on a cheap creature and surveil and delirium work together so nicely. Foul watcher reminds me of the evil birds in the Wheel of Time that worked for the Dark One. I love how ominous the art is. Another new delirium card I like is Unholy Heat. Without delirium this is a bread and butter common removal spell, but with delirium it does six damage, which is almost unprecedented for one mana.

Radiant Epicure

Alongside the ten two-colour pairs there is also support for a five-colour archetype. If you get enough of the common dual lands you can play any of the rares you draft no matter what colour it is. Given how powerful many of the rares are, this sounds like a really fun archetype. A cycle of converge uncommons have been added to give players more reasons to draft this deck. Converge is a weird mechanic. It really captures the idea of playing with as many colours as you can but it looks like a very hard mechanic to design for. Ideally the cards are ok when you use two colours, good with three colours and amazing with more colours. These constraints make it hard to find effects that scale in this way. This difficulty is what makes me appreciate the converge cards in this set. They seem to be very well balanced because they incentivise playing as many colours as possible, but aren’t unplayable when you don’t draw the right mix of lands.

All of the designs are interesting in their own way. Radiant Epicure is my favourite because once you have three colours this is comparable to a Siege Rhino which is an incredible card to be compared to for an uncommon. Glinting Creeper can be a ten-ten creature for five with evasion which is very nice, whilst Kaleidoscorch can kill two creatures which is very good for draft. I enjoyed converge in this set much more than in Battle for Zendikar. I don’t think there are enough good converge designs to justify making it a main mechanic in a set but it works really well here in a supporting role.

Arcbound Prototype

Even complicated draft formats with many different mechanics and ideas benefit from a few simple commons. It gives drafters a break from reading paragraphs and paragraphs of rules text. The red-white archetype is based on the modular mechanic. Apart from the odd card or two, we haven’t seen modular since it first appeared in Darksteel. Arcbound Ravager aside. most of them were underwhelming. Modular cards were typically expensive like Arcbound Overseer or were very small for their cost like Arcbound Bruiser. Creatures have gotten a lot better since then, so it’s great to see an iconic mechanic updated to get cheap efficient creatures which make it much easier to build a deck around.

Like Academy Manufactor earlier, the prototype is a assembly worker. This means it synergises with cards like Assembly-Worker and Mishra’s Factory. There aren’t enough assembly workers to make an entire deck but it’s good to see this extremely rare creature type hasn’t been forgotten. The flavour text really plays into the assembly worker theme and is my favourite bit of flavour text in the set.

Hard Evidence

I must highlight a rather innoccuous common in Hard Evidence. For one mana it gives blue a bundle of useful stuff. As a defensive colour, the blocker helps blue decks against aggressive strategies. The rest of the card then synergises with many different traditional themes for blue decks. It creates an artifact, it’s a sorcery and it provides a source of card draw if needed. It has naturally earned comparisons with Thraben Inspector which proved how good investigate could be on a small creature. It’s a shame this card won’t be available in standard because I’d love to know if this card would see play beyond limited.

Tavern Scoundrel

One of the biggest differences between casual and competitive players is their attitude to luck. Competitive players typically see mechanics that use randomness like coin flips and dice rolling as invalidating skilful play whilst casual players are more interested in whether something is fun or not. Given Modern Horizons is squarely aimed at a format like Modern it’s surprising to see that it’s the first set in history have three new coin flipping cards in it.

At first glance, the tavern scoundrel is simply a mirror of Tavern Swindler that lets you double your treasure if you’re willing to gamble. However the scoundrel works differently. You get two treasure for any coin flip you win, so it has incredible synergy with any other coin flipping coin. Just having multiples in play pushes the odds of getting rich in your favour. The other new coin flipping cards are Goblin Traprunner and Yusri, Fortune’s Flame. Yusri in particular has a very exciting ability. Even if I’m low on life, I expect I’d flip five coins every single time.

Sudden Edict

Diabolic Edict is an iconic Magic card. Removal is usually much more powerful since you choose the creature, not your opponent. However some of the most powerful creatures in the game like Progenitus which are almost completely invincible still vulnerable to edict effects. Diabolic Edict was printed in Tempest and there have been few edicts that beat it since. Liliana’s Triumph and Geth’s Verdict only offer marginal improvements over the classic version. Sudden Edict however is a real upgrade. Split Second is a powerful ability because it takes away your opponent’s ability to react. It blanks counterspells, prevents creatures like Griselbrand using its ability before it dies and stops disposable creatures being created at instant speed to save the real target. I’m sure many sideboards will happily welcome Sudden Edict.

Another exciting addition to side-boards is Void Mirror. Most decks are probably immune to it, but some very powerful cards become useless. The tron lands and Mishra’s Workshop can produce broken amounts of mana, but without a source of coloured mana it becomes useless. It also stops free spells. In Legacy and Vintage there are plenty of staples that are free or only played for free. Think of Black Lotus, Force of Will or Gush. The new exciting evoke cycle of mythics like Grief also lose the evoke ability and cascade no longer casts anything. The list goes on. This would be utterly unplayable in standard, but looking at the oldest formats this could be quite interesting in sideboards or maybe even main decks.

Jade Avenger

One of the best parts of Modern Horizons sets is the ability to bring back old mechanics on a single card without the constraints of normal sets. Bushido is Magic’s way of representing the combat prowess of samurai. It has always previously been on cards that fit the aesthetic of Kamigawa, Magic’s Japanese mythology plane but it is descended from Chub Toad from Ice Age. Normally when a mechanic is turned into a keyword, older cards are errated to use this keyword. Because Chub Toad doesn’t fit the samurai theme, it never received bushido. Jade Avenger now exists to pacify any frog fans clamouring for Chub Toad to be errated to become a frog samurai.

Channel is another Kamigawa mechanic that returns in this set. Channel is a super-thematic ability. It appears on spirit cards and gives the cards an alternative use. You can discard the cards instead of casting them to get an effect that reflects the essence of the spirit creature. Unfortunately Channel has only appeared on twelve cards in Saviour of Kamigawa, and like most cards in that set they are pretty weak by modern standards. Ghost-Lit Drifter fits with the original Ghost-Lit spirit cycle but is efficient as a creature and it can be channelled to make an army unblockable and win the game. The art is also so lovely that I’m tempted to put it in my spirit decks even if most spirits have flying already.

Blazing Rootwalla

Do you enjoy discarding cards? Then this really is be the set for you. There are fantastic discard outlets like Bone Shards and Rakdos Headliner, cards like Recalibrate, Lazotep Chancellor and Asmoranomardicadaistinaculdacar that reward you for discarding cards and on top of that many of the mechanics and themes of the set love discard effects. Reanimator strategies and delirium strategies both love putting specific cards in the graveyard but madness is the archetype that loves discarding cards the most.

If your Rakdos Headliner discards a huge bomb like Archon of Cruelty and you reanimate it you got two creatures but spent three cards. This is card disadvantage, which is a real drawback. This is why the ultimate discard mechanic is madness. When you discard a card and cast it with madness you still get to play all your cards. The drawback is that you usually have to pay mana to discard a card and then pay its madness cost in the same turn which can be difficult to do. Blazing Rootwalla solves this problem by being free to madness out. It’s a colour-shifted homage to Basking Rootwalla which makes a lot of sense as a very aggressive creature in red. You can even play both rootwallas if you need the redundancy. I love the flaming mane in the art too.