Augury Adept from Shadowmoor holds a special place in my heart when it comes to Magic: the Gathering. The Adept happens to be the first rare I ever pulled from a Magic pack. Shadowmoor is one of the best MTG sets ever printed, especially in regards to cards that are highly relevant in the popular Commander format. The Lorwyn-Shadowmoor “super” block remains my favorite group of sets in Magic history, if only because it has some of my favorite cards in the game. It’s also the first time I actually truly played Magic.
I’d fiddled around with a Ravnica tournament pack here, an 8th Edition starter deck there, and a Time Spiral intro deck that I was never too thrilled with. I’m not entirely sure what became of those particular cards. It wasn’t until after my first draft of Shadowmoor that I really got into Magic. Augury Adept is the card that struck me right away as what I wanted for my very first pick in my very first draft pack. Considering I knew next to nothing about the game at the time, it was a surprisingly good pick.
On the surface, Augury Adept doesn’t look like much. She’s a 2/2 Kithkin Wizard (Kithkins rule!) with an interesting ability. First of all, her hybrid mana cost is great for Limited; you can play her in either white or blue, or both, and not have to worry about being color-screwed. If she does any combat damage to a player, you get to reveal the top card of your deck, gain life equal to its mana cost, and put it into your hand. If it’s a land, you don’t gain any life, but you still get to add it into your hand. What’s especially good about the way that this ability is worded is that it’s technically not drawing a card. The wording can be relevant since cards that prevent you from drawing outside of your draw step do not affect her ability.
If I remember correctly, I got the Adept through for some damage a number of times and got some nice little draws out of it. But I didn’t do particularly well in that tournament. I did win a few games, though, mostly because during the same draft I picked a Godhead of Awe! We’ll talk about that crazy girl later, but even a “noob” knows how good that card is!
At the time, Augury Adept got to enjoy a little card called Steel of the Godhead, also originally printed in Shadowmoor.
What was especially great about this Enchantment is that cards like Augury Adept (and Godhead of Awe) got the benefit of both effects. Having a 4/4 Augury Adept with lifelink that couldn’t be blocked was pretty sweet. Also, in Standard at the time, we had Battle Mastery, a 3-drop Enchantment that gives Double Strike from Lorwyn (it’s also in Magic 2015 and Dragons of Tarkir). Getting two triggers from Augury Adept was pretty awesome. She was a solid card along with the Godhead in control decks at the time, for both the card advantage and the ability to use the Steel of the Godhead on her.
In Commander, Augury Adept can easily deal combat damage a couple of times, especially in the early turns during a multiplayer game. That card draw and little extra life gain makes her investment of only 3 mana very, very good. If you can make her unblockable, you could get quite a few cards out of her, especially with double strike.
I sold the Adept and the Godhead of Awe to my local game shop relatively soon after that, when I learned they each were valuable enough to get money from. I easily got more than they are worth now for them, but I wish I still had them simply for the nostalgic value. However, I got a new Augury Adept from the Commander 2013 product, so at least I have a copy again. If you’re looking for a little creature to fill out your blue/white EDH deck that can do some early game work for you, she’s worth a look; especially, if you run Kithkins!