My Double Masters Previews: Maelstrom Pulse and Awakening Zone

Elizabeth Rice • July 29, 2020

Well look what have we here. I've made it to the big leagues with not one but two previews of Magic's newest Premium product, Double Masters. Thank you to Wizards for the free previews. I've always really enjoyed preview season, so it feels great to be a part of it from the other side!

Despite the discourse surrounding this set, there are a lot of cards to be excited about from needed reprints to box topper alternate arts.

Without further ado, say hello to Maelstrom Pulse and Awakening Zone!

Maelstrom Pulse has seen its time in the sun. An often played Jund card in modern, it has saved me more than once against a flock lingering souls.  Although I haven't played jund in five years, pulse is still has a home in the main deck of many Jund decks.

While Pulse also sees play in EDH, it has much stiffer competition for BG removal spells, such as Assassin's Trophy and Putrefy. It being sorcery speed is also a hit on its playability. That being said, its still found in over 4500 EDH decks according to

Awakening Zone has sort of the reverse story of Maelstrom Pulse. While it sees no eternal format play that I'm aware of, it is a great EDH card. It is an auto include in every sacrifice based EDH deck that can run it. You will see if often in Korvold, Fae-Cursed King, and Meren of Clan Nel Toth.

I personally had this in my Shattergang Brothers EDH deck as a source of mana and a constant supplier of throwaway creatures.

1 Vaevictis Asmadi, the Dire
1 Harrow
1 Rampant Growth
1 Trash for Treasure
1 Sheoldred, Whispering One
1 Treasure Keeper
1 Woe Strider
1 Korvold, Fae-Cursed King
1 Trading Post
1 Myr Retriever
1 Vandalblast
1 Solemn Simulacrum
1 Deathreap Ritual
1 Moldervine Reclamation
1 Reclamation Sage
1 Dictate of Erebos
1 Squee, the Immortal
1 Awakening Zone
1 Witch's Oven
1 Harvester of Souls
1 Arcane Signet
1 Glissa, the Traitor
1 Skullclamp
1 Cultivate
1 Crucible of Worlds
1 Spine of Ish Sah
1 Beast Within
1 Primal Growth
1 Lightning Greaves
1 Daretti, Ingenious Iconoclast
1 Eternal Witness
1 Kodama's Reach
1 Butcher of Malakir
1 Yavimaya Elder
1 Chaos Warp
1 Goblin Engineer
1 Strionic Resonator
1 Ophiomancer
1 Casualties of War
1 Mazirek, Kraul Death Priest
1 Diabolic Intent
1 Phyrexian Altar
1 Phyrexian Arena
1 Ichor Wellspring
1 Krosan Grip
1 Windgrace's Judgment
1 Damnation
1 Treasured Find
1 Thrilling Encore
1 Demonic Tutor
1 Ashnod's Altar
1 Mycosynth Wellspring
1 Grave Pact1 Daretti, Scrap Savant
1 Treasure Nabber
1 It That Betrays
1 Vraska, Golgari Queen
1 Sol Ring
1 Commander's Sphere
1 Greater Good
1 Mind Stone
1 Goblin Welder
1 Savra, Queen of the Golgari
1 Bojuka Bog
1 Vault of Whispers
1 Tree of Tales
1 Golgari Rot Farm
1 Stomping Ground
1 Dragonskull Summit
1 Blood Crypt
3 Forest
1 Great Furnace
1 Temple of Abandon
1 Reliquary Tower
1 Ghost Quarter
1 Canyon Slough
4 Swamp
1 Urborg, Tomb of Yawgmoth
1 Gruul Turf
2 Mountain
1 Command Tower
1 Strip Mine
1 Woodland Cemetery
1 Buried Ruin
1 Spire Garden
1 Bloodstained Mire
1 Luxury Suite
1 Fire-Lit Thicket
1 Overgrown Tomb
1 Rootbound Crag
1 Wooded Foothills
1 Temple of Malady
1 Rakdos Carnarium
1 Shattergang Brothers

While Korvold has probably become the Jund sacrifice deck, Awakening Zone is a great include here as well. Sacrificing a creature for one mana may not be that impactful, but if it also draws you a card and puts a +1/+1 counter on your commander, well now you're cooking with grease.  

It's hard to say exactly what the limited landscape of this set will be. However, this card will certainly be useful in any ramp or aristocrat based strategy. Maelstrom pulse will certainly be effective against any token deck should one present itself.

Utility cards that aren't high-end are an underrated part of sets like Double Masters. The price tag may be low, but these are the cards that players often want to buy in multiples. I have a lot of nostalgia for both of these cards. They may not be the flashiest cards ever printed, but they sure do get their jobs done.