Yesterday I looked at the red creatures that have the potential to impact a variety of formats. Today I will look at other red cards I expect to see some play and could have an impact on standard now or more likely when rotation occurs.

Red latest planeswalker card is Chandra, Heart of Fire. This version of Chandra has similarities to Chandra Torch of Defiance but costs five mana rather than four.

Torch of Defiance was a mainstay in Mono-Red decks when she was legal in standard and has seen play in other formats. Chandra Torch of Defiance will be the card that all future Chandra cards will be compared too. Torch of Defiance had two plus and two minus abilities. Her first ability saw the most use and helped to end games in a couple of turns. On occasion, her ultimate ability would be played to end games.

We have seen four new versions of Chandra since Torch’s printing. While each had upside, none became a build around in Standard. Could Chandra, Heart of Fire become a build around planeswalker for red?

She has two plus one abilities which makes the card more powerful than what we have seen in other resent Chandras. Her first ability requires you to discard your hand, then exile the top three cards of your library. Until end of turn, you may play cards exiled this way. Most of the time, when you cast Chandra she will be the last card in your hand, so this ability gives you a draw three each turn for no cost. This is similar to Torch of Defiance’s first plus ability, but without the downside of losing the card on the turn you cast Torch of Defiance because you can use Heart of Fires other plus ability on the turn she enters the battlefield rather than losing the card. Also, you can play land from the three cards exiled this way. When you drew a land with Torch of Defiance it was lost. Card advantage has been a problem for red since Torch of Defiance rotated out of Standard.

The other plus one ability does two damage to any target. I expect that this will be the ability used most of the time on the turn that Chandra, Heart of Fires is cast. The ability to hit your opponent for two damage, a creature, or a planeswalker moves the decks plan forward.

What makes Chandra, Heart of Fire better than what we have seen from Chandra cards since Torch of Defiance is that it gives you a real option the turn that it was cast. This has not been the case with the other Chandras in Standard. Also, it does not give you the either-or option that Torch of Defiance does with its main plus one option. You get to choose your option with Heart of Fire.

Her final ability is for minus nine. This allows you to search your graveyard and library for any number of red instants and/or sorcery cards, exile then, then shuffle your library. You may cast them this turn. Add six red mana. When you activate Chandra, Heart of Fire’s ultimate ability it should end most games. It will require more instants and sorceries that do direct damage if your game plan is to get Chandra to her ultimate.

Overall, I like the card. Whether or not it is a playable card will depend on how Standard develops. As long as decks are able to continue to cheat on mana, using a five mana planeswalker in a deck that does not have any mana ramping will limit the cards playability. I think that Red players will work to create a deck around Chandra. How Standard adapts to the addition of Core Set 2021 and fall rotation will have a lot to do with how much we see Chandra in Standard.

Fiery Emancipation is a six a mana enchantment that triples the damage to any permanent or player that is deal damage.

This is a powerful ability, but the high mana cost makes it unplayable in Standard outside of a ramp deck. Temur Ramp could be a home for the card, but it will need a lot of red mana in the deck because Fiery Emancipation requires three red mana to cast. I do not think that a Mono-Red Aggro deck will have a place for it because the cost is too high. I doubt that we will see much of Fiery Emancipation outside of limited.

We finally get a replacement for Fight with Fire in Soul Sear.

One of the biggest problems that red has faced is the inability to take down large creatures. Soul Sear does 5 damage to a target creature or planeswalker and that permanent loses indestructible until the end of the turn. This means that Soul Sear can remove a Theros god from play or take down a powerful planeswalker. It will fit nicely into sideboards and if Standard sees a rise in aggro decks it may have a place in main decks.

The final new red card is Volcanic Salvo.

On the face of it, Volcanic Salvo looks unplayable. Twelve mana is a steep cost. What makes it possible to consider playing it is that the cost is reduced by the total power of creatures you control. Since Mono-Red typically has multiple creatures in play by turn three the cost of Volcanic Salvo could be as low as two red mana. Volcanic Salvo deals six damage to each of up to two target creatures and/or planeswalkers. This would allow a Mono-Red deck to deal with the biggest threats in Standard. While I do not see it as a main deck card. I think it will become a sideboard card in any red based deck because the ability to take down Uro, another creature, or a planeswalker make it to good to not have as an option. On Arena, I can see two or three copies of Volcanic Salvo in best-of-one decks because there will be more aggro decks in that format.

How standard shakes out over the next few weeks will determine how much we see of new red cards in Standard. Red offers some interesting cards, but until green-blue x decks lose their ability to ramp into large amounts of mana fair Magic will be hard to play. Should we move to a place where cheating on mana becomes less of a problem then red will have a larger role in the Standard.

Until next time, good luck finding your win condition!