Jeremy casts spells in between his careers as a chemical analyst and campus manager.
What Are Guildmages in Magic?
While not an official subtype, several Magic creatures carry the "Guildmage" title. They're usually two-cost multi-colored wizards that offer two activated effects, making them versatile early-game warriors.
These spellcasters generally carry 2/2 stats and their traits give nice outlets for leftover mana. But with dozens of sorcerers available, which arcane masters reign supreme? These are the 10 best Guildmage creatures in Magic: The Gathering!
10. Duskmantle Guildmage
CMC (Converted Mana Cost): 2
Like most Guildmages, Duskmantle is a 2/2 wizard with two abilities. By spending three mana, he forces a player to lose one life whenever a card is placed into their graveyard that turn, an excellent supplement to blue's mill prowess.
Or, by spending four mana, he sends the top two cards of a player's deck into their graveyard. Combining the two effects forms a nice combo, but it's usually best to simply use the first while milling with other cards.
9. Combine Guildmage
Where most Guildmages are human wizards, Combine is a merfolk wizard—meaning she supports both of blue's most abundant factions. In addition to her handy subtypes, Combine can spend two mana and tap to have your creatures enter with a +1/+1 counter that turn.
Or she can again spend two mana and tap to move a +1/+1 counter from one of your creatures to another. Neither ability is overwhelming, but they provide nice bonuses on top of decent stats and bloodlines.
8. Dimir Guildmage
In addition to the standard 2/2 stats and wizard subtype (always appreciated in blue), Dimir's unique mana symbols let you cast him with either black or black mana, accessible even when your land draws are stale.
And by spending four mana during your main phase, he can make any player draw or discard a card. While each effect requires a moderate sum, they're useful traits that don't require Dimir to tap.
7. Zameck Guildmage
Zameck possesses some of the best subtypes in the game, being an elf wizard that blends with blue and green's two most numerous families. And by spending two mana, he can have your creatures arrive with a +1/+1 counter that turn or remove one from your troop to draw card.
Both are inexpensive traits that work well together and don't require tapping, making Zameck one of the most mana-efficient Guildmages available.
6. Simic Guildmage
Like Zameck, Simic offers a useful elf wizard blend, and his symbols accept either green or blue mana. By spending two mana, he can move a +1/+1 counter or aura enchantment from one creature to another with the same controller, rearranging buffs as needed.
Plus, both Simic's base cost and activated effects are less mana-restrictive than Zameck, making him more reliable in decks adding additional colors.
5. Conclave Guildmage
Unlike most Guildmages, Conclave isn't a wizard, but considering he lacks blue, it's not a big issue, especially since his elf and cleric subtypes pick up the slack. He can spend a single mana and tap to grant all creatures you control trample for the turn, an excellent way to empower monster-focused green and white decks.
Conclave can also pay six mana and tap to create a 2/2 elf knight token with vigilance. That's a hefty price for such a weak unit, so it's mostly fluff, but it's nice to have available and doesn't detract from the excellent single-cost effect.
4. Senate Guildmage
Back to basics, Senate's a 2/2 human wizard, and he offers two inexpensive effects. Spending a white mana and tapping lets you gain two life, while exhausting with a blue lets you draw and discard a card.
Both are inexpensive abilities with useful benefits. Extra health is always nice, and cycling through your deck while filling your graveyard ensures you're prepared for any situation.
3. Izzet Guildmage
Another human wizard, Izzet accepts any combination of red/blue mana, making him easy to play. He can also spend three mana to copy an instant or sorcery you cast with a CMC of two or less. This helps your inexpensive spells scale well even in the later stages of a match, replicating their effects for twice the pain.
2. League Guildmage
Another red/blue mage, League's second effect is similar to Izzet's abilities, letting you spend a red mana plus X more to copy an instant or sorcery you control with X CMC. This single ability is superior to Izzet's two traits, as it can match him in efficiency (paying three to copy a two-cost spell), but it's cheaper for lower-cost targets and can potentially replicate more expensive units The only downside is that League also must tap to use the effect.
Still, she can also exhaust and spend four mana to simply draw a card, giving her a second usage when your hand is running low. Adaptable yet formidable, League is barely outmatched by...
1. Azorius Guildmage
Azorius's varied mana symbols lets you spend either blue or white resources to cast her, and she arrives as a 2/2 vedalken wizard. Then, by spending three mana, she can either tap a creature or counter an activated ability.
The counter is the real treat here, as few spells specifically repel effects on cards already in play, making this an appreciated and reusable asset. A frequent member of my own blue/white commander decks, Azorious is surprisingly cheap, costing less than a single dollar!
Using Guildmages in Magic: The Gathering
Today's mages offer some of the most versatile cards in Magic, carrying useful subtypes, respectable stats, twin abilities, and varied mana costs—just remember they don't accept colorless mana, so artifacts like "Sol Ring" can't pay for them. That said, their colored symbols work great for strengthening devotion effects, making them useful tools for the enchantment god cards.
Wizard supports are also useful, and cards like "Training Grounds" reduce the prices of activated abilities. But for now, as we eagerly await Wizards of the Coast's next expansion of multi-colored spellcasters, vote for your favorite Guildmage and I'll see you at our next MTG countdown!
© 2019 Jeremy Gill