@evouga are we even talking about similar decks when considering one or the other? This feels much more a control card than Citadel. Also, I disagree that Citadel is easier to cast than this. Citadel needs either Rituals or Tinker.
That's a fair question. I think the value Elsha provides is too marginal and the hoop too high to be attractive in a control shell... I'd worry you'll quite commonly hit a glut of lands or countermagic.
Also resolving Tinker is arguably easier than casting 2URW
Hrm I'm still more excited by Bolas's Citadel, I think.
Citadel is one mana more expensive, but in far less annoying colors, so you're probably looking to cheat Elsha into play. You have to pay mana for the spells you chain, which is a big minus compared to Citadel, and in return Elsha is a win condition on her(?) own (assuming you want to wait a turn to remove summoning sickness, which you probably do not) and the Flash ability gives you a bit of resilience to countermagic, since you can keep casting spells in response to any of the opponent's counterplay.
Apparently WotC thinks this card is Vintage-playable: https://magic.wizards.com/en/articles/archive/play-design/m-files-core-set-2020-white-blue-black-2019-07-12
Interested to see what happens with this in Vintage. It will certainly get attention. Six-of VT is worth a build-around.
That's certainly a quaint take on the format
I think so? According to the comp. rules,
A card’s mana cost is indicated by mana symbols near the top of the card. (See rule 107.4.)
so I think costs involving Phyrexian mana, Snow mana, Hybrid mana, etc are all distinct from "ordinary" colored mana costs. I believe that X is also considered distinct from 0 or XX.
Creature -- Demon
Embodiment of Agonies enters the battlefield with a +1/+1 counter on it for each different mana cost (note: not converted mana cost) among nonland cards in your graveyard.
So to be clear, I don't think a straight beater is playable in Vintage anymore. And if I did, I'm not sure this guy is better than, say, Tombstalker. But the textbox here is so unusual I wanted to call attention to it.
Unlike Tarmogoyf, the power/toughness of Embodiment is locked in when you cast him; in the mid- to late-game, though, you get an awful lot of evasive body for three mana, even if you're not purposefully stocking the graveyard with Bazaar, dredging, etc.
Sure, this ability is busted. The real question is whether it is busted at 5BBB, compared to the opportunity cost of casting something else like Griselbrand or Bargain.
One notable interaction: you can mini-Tendrils yourself (no matter how much life you have) to draw an absurd number of cards without losing any life.