I mean it depends on how specific you are about a creature being “vanilla”. [[Tarmogoyf]] is most often a 4/5 for 2 with no relevant ability other than scaling P/T. Similarly, [[Death’s Shadow]] has an ability that scales P/T, but besides static changes to P/T is often a 5/5ish for 1. Most likely somewhere in the neighborhood of a 4/4 for 1 at minimum.


Those are French vanilla creatures


So is ornithopter, tho, and actually, shadow and goyf aren't french vanilla by the strictest definition since neither ability is keyworded


Oh you're right, I forgot Ornithopter has flying. And yes there is no term for creatures that only change their P/T by their ability but do nothing else, but I would also call them French vanilla by the lack of a term


Ywah I have to agree that they are truly just vanilla. Neither have evasion and both. Can easily die/become useless to other effects that are good.


[Tarmogoyf](https://c1.scryfall.com/file/scryfall-cards/normal/front/6/9/69daba76-96e8-4bcc-ab79-2f00189ad8fb.jpg?1619398799) - [(G)](http://gatherer.wizards.com/Pages/Card/Details.aspx?name=Tarmogoyf) [(SF)](https://scryfall.com/card/tsr/235/tarmogoyf?utm_source=mtgcardfetcher) [(txt)](https://api.scryfall.com/cards/69daba76-96e8-4bcc-ab79-2f00189ad8fb?utm_source=mtgcardfetcher&format=text) [Death’s Shadow](https://c1.scryfall.com/file/scryfall-cards/normal/front/5/5/5526ff6e-c079-4ad4-ac8d-5e26ecacf50d.jpg?1598304517) - [(G)](http://gatherer.wizards.com/Pages/Card/Details.aspx?name=Death%27s%20Shadow) [(SF)](https://scryfall.com/card/2xm/82/deaths-shadow?utm_source=mtgcardfetcher) [(txt)](https://api.scryfall.com/cards/5526ff6e-c079-4ad4-ac8d-5e26ecacf50d?utm_source=mtgcardfetcher&format=text) ^^^[[cardname]] ^^^or ^^^[[cardname|SET]] ^^^to ^^^call


Honestly "often a 5/5ish for 1" is correct, as is "4/4 for 1 at minimum." As another example: if Wild Nacatl stops being a fringe card, then 3/3 for 1 becomes acceptable, but as of now it doesn't make the cut.


I would say a 1 drop 3/3 with a relevant tribe would be the minimum. [Wild Nacatl] is basically this but with a bad tribe, and sometimes sees play in zoo. 2 drop has to be a 4/4. If it’s a 5/5 it’s almost strictly better than [Tarmogoyf] as goyf likes to sit at 4/5 but can hit 5/6 in the right game. And we know goyf is good. 3 drop seems tough to decide. Modern is a bit too fast for even good 3 drop creatures sometimes. I feel like 6/6 might be good enough, but also just dropping a vanilla 3 drop on 3 is underwhelming. Maybe 7/7 or 8/8. But that’s pushing bad design tbh, too good for a modern horizons limited and WAY too good for standard. 4 drop and above, I just don’t seem one ever being relevant.


Goyf is definitely way bigger than 4 5 nowadays. That was pre MH2 days


nacatl's tribe is domain haha


Give me a 1-mana 3/3 Blue Merfolk, and I can tell you I'll play it The Merfolk archetype has been dying to get a good 1-mana aggressive drop since forever. At this point even a 1-mana 2/2 would see play I reckon. \[\[Tide shaper\]\] is the closest in monoBlue and \[\[Kumena's Speaker\]\] in BlueGreen


I think if merfolk could get a [[mausoleum wanderer]] except it's a 1/1 merfolk with Islandwalk or skulk or something that would be great for merfolk.


[mausoleum wanderer](https://c1.scryfall.com/file/scryfall-cards/normal/front/4/2/42391fa7-6172-487c-b8aa-d41ab7c64973.jpg?1576384180) - [(G)](http://gatherer.wizards.com/Pages/Card/Details.aspx?name=mausoleum%20wanderer) [(SF)](https://scryfall.com/card/emn/69/mausoleum-wanderer?utm_source=mtgcardfetcher) [(txt)](https://api.scryfall.com/cards/42391fa7-6172-487c-b8aa-d41ab7c64973?utm_source=mtgcardfetcher&format=text) ^^^[[cardname]] ^^^or ^^^[[cardname|SET]] ^^^to ^^^call


1-mana: 4/4. If your creature dies to Bolt anyways, why would you run it over the current suite of 1-drops that often generate value before dying to Bolt. 2-mana: 7/7. If I’m spending 2 mana on you, you can’t die to a 1-mana Heat, sorry buddy. And no you guys, [[Shadow of Mortality]] isn’t quite there yet. 3-mana: 13/13. If I’m spending 3 mana on you, you gotta be bigger than a Saga token or a Nettlecystc since those often become 12/12s with almost zero effort in the decks that abuse them. 4-mana and above: unplayable. A “French vanilla” creature would need to be a 25/25 Haste to be playable at 4-mana, a truly vanilla creature simply won’t be playable because a *lot* of Modern decks can already outright kill you on turns 3-4.


Nothing said here was hyperbolic whatsoever.


A 4/3 is probably good enough to see play in Modern. Clocking a turn faster than the one mana 3 power creatures is noteworthy, but turning on Stubborn Denial would be quite powerful. Goyf is worse, but still playable in an Unholy Heat world. A vanilla 4/5 is probably good enough, but a 5/6 for two would definitely see play. It'd be mostly better than Goyf since it doesn't get blanked by graveyard hate or nonbo with Murktide. 3 mana and above gets a little nebulous. It's difficult to say how good a true vanilla 4 mana 20/20 would be, but I'm optimistic that it would be playable since at point you can start exploring two card combos but just Flinging it or whatever.


> Goyf is worse, but still playable in an Unholy Heat world. A vanilla 4/5 is probably good enough, but a 5/6 for two would definitely see play. It’d be mostly better than Goyf since it doesn’t get blanked by graveyard hate or nonbo with Murktide. Thing is, the only deck that plays him nowadays quite regularly turns him into a 6/7. I know a 4/5 Goyf still gets played, but it only gets played because there’s some number of games where it’s a lot more resilient.


This should be marked as answer.


[Shadow of Mortality](https://c1.scryfall.com/file/scryfall-cards/normal/front/4/0/40cbb0db-94e9-4988-b900-ced4f9e6d4ed.jpg?1650023404) - [(G)](http://gatherer.wizards.com/Pages/Card/Details.aspx?name=Shadow%20of%20Mortality) [(SF)](https://scryfall.com/card/snc/94/shadow-of-mortality?utm_source=mtgcardfetcher) [(txt)](https://api.scryfall.com/cards/40cbb0db-94e9-4988-b900-ced4f9e6d4ed?utm_source=mtgcardfetcher&format=text) ^^^[[cardname]] ^^^or ^^^[[cardname|SET]] ^^^to ^^^call


1- 5/5 2- 7/7 3- honestly 20/20 Imo.


Even a 1 mana 5/5 is tough sell now. Looking at [[Gurmag Angler]]


[Gurmag Angler](https://c1.scryfall.com/file/scryfall-cards/normal/front/c/e/cedd44eb-f381-46e1-bcb0-88416b4ce33d.jpg?1547516928) - [(G)](http://gatherer.wizards.com/Pages/Card/Details.aspx?name=Gurmag%20Angler) [(SF)](https://scryfall.com/card/uma/102/gurmag-angler?utm_source=mtgcardfetcher) [(txt)](https://api.scryfall.com/cards/cedd44eb-f381-46e1-bcb0-88416b4ce33d?utm_source=mtgcardfetcher&format=text) ^^^[[cardname]] ^^^or ^^^[[cardname|SET]] ^^^to ^^^call


I mean goyf and shadow are probably the closest youll get to a vanilla beater in modern.


[Memnite](https://c1.scryfall.com/file/scryfall-cards/normal/front/9/7/975459ba-e1c2-4800-a3fa-5c0cf8ce728f.jpg?1562925499) - [(G)](http://gatherer.wizards.com/Pages/Card/Details.aspx?name=Memnite) [(SF)](https://scryfall.com/card/td2/2/memnite?utm_source=mtgcardfetcher) [(txt)](https://api.scryfall.com/cards/975459ba-e1c2-4800-a3fa-5c0cf8ce728f?utm_source=mtgcardfetcher&format=text) [Ornithopter](https://c1.scryfall.com/file/scryfall-cards/normal/front/d/d/ddb96645-44d2-426c-90cb-3186297a8728.jpg?1576382362) - [(G)](http://gatherer.wizards.com/Pages/Card/Details.aspx?name=Ornithopter) [(SF)](https://scryfall.com/card/aer/167/ornithopter?utm_source=mtgcardfetcher) [(txt)](https://api.scryfall.com/cards/ddb96645-44d2-426c-90cb-3186297a8728?utm_source=mtgcardfetcher&format=text) ^^^[[cardname]] ^^^or ^^^[[cardname|SET]] ^^^to ^^^call


I’ve been wondering that too! Would a 3/1 beast for 1 red even see play? Would a 3/3 beast for 1 green still be broken? I don’t know honestly.


[[Wild Nacatl]] would like to have some words with you lol. But on a serious note neither of those really make the cut in modern. A vanilla creature’s only real point is to attack and block well and as a one drop with 3 or less toughness they’re just dead to [[lightning bolt]], [[prismatic ending]], [[Fatal Push]], and at 2 toughness or less they even die to an [[unholy heat]] with no delirium. Now if we get to start adding haste into the equation then Burn players would be more than interested.


##### ###### #### [Wild Nacatl](https://c1.scryfall.com/file/scryfall-cards/normal/front/5/a/5a3bb291-11d1-45e0-a60a-e75c7dc94b94.jpg?1562916230) - [(G)](http://gatherer.wizards.com/Pages/Card/Details.aspx?name=Wild%20Nacatl) [(SF)](https://scryfall.com/card/ddh/4/wild-nacatl?utm_source=mtgcardfetcher) [(txt)](https://api.scryfall.com/cards/5a3bb291-11d1-45e0-a60a-e75c7dc94b94?utm_source=mtgcardfetcher&format=text) [lightning bolt](https://c1.scryfall.com/file/scryfall-cards/normal/front/a/e/ae5f9fb1-5a55-4db3-98a1-2628e3598c18.jpg?1648155765) - [(G)](http://gatherer.wizards.com/Pages/Card/Details.aspx?name=lightning%20bolt) [(SF)](https://scryfall.com/card/clb/187/lightning-bolt?utm_source=mtgcardfetcher) [(txt)](https://api.scryfall.com/cards/ae5f9fb1-5a55-4db3-98a1-2628e3598c18?utm_source=mtgcardfetcher&format=text) [prismatic ending](https://c1.scryfall.com/file/scryfall-cards/normal/front/8/2/825969b9-3c70-4fca-8cab-696e9ca7cdb2.jpg?1626093920) - [(G)](http://gatherer.wizards.com/Pages/Card/Details.aspx?name=prismatic%20ending) [(SF)](https://scryfall.com/card/mh2/25/prismatic-ending?utm_source=mtgcardfetcher) [(txt)](https://api.scryfall.com/cards/825969b9-3c70-4fca-8cab-696e9ca7cdb2?utm_source=mtgcardfetcher&format=text) [Fatal Push](https://c1.scryfall.com/file/scryfall-cards/normal/front/6/e/6e9d8fe4-fd9b-4923-92bf-7dd6b8fa02e7.jpg?1598304715) - [(G)](http://gatherer.wizards.com/Pages/Card/Details.aspx?name=Fatal%20Push) [(SF)](https://scryfall.com/card/2xm/93/fatal-push?utm_source=mtgcardfetcher) [(txt)](https://api.scryfall.com/cards/6e9d8fe4-fd9b-4923-92bf-7dd6b8fa02e7?utm_source=mtgcardfetcher&format=text) [unholy heat](https://c1.scryfall.com/file/scryfall-cards/normal/front/2/b/2b73d294-6ab1-4051-9b0f-d8e335d37674.jpg?1626097096) - [(G)](http://gatherer.wizards.com/Pages/Card/Details.aspx?name=unholy%20heat) [(SF)](https://scryfall.com/card/mh2/145/unholy-heat?utm_source=mtgcardfetcher) [(txt)](https://api.scryfall.com/cards/2b73d294-6ab1-4051-9b0f-d8e335d37674?utm_source=mtgcardfetcher&format=text) ^^^[[cardname]] ^^^or ^^^[[cardname|SET]] ^^^to ^^^call


Well we got [[Spark Elemental]] which needs to be sacrificed but has the upside of haste and trample. I don't think a 3/1 would be enough, because it dies to almost anything blocking it and without having haste it won't deal any damage even if you are on the play and play it turn 1. It would eat a removal spell or could get blocked easily.


[Spark Elemental](https://c1.scryfall.com/file/scryfall-cards/normal/front/0/9/09e7dfad-aca9-498d-bd1c-5503b411ca5f.jpg?1562543469) - [(G)](http://gatherer.wizards.com/Pages/Card/Details.aspx?name=Spark%20Elemental) [(SF)](https://scryfall.com/card/10e/237/spark-elemental?utm_source=mtgcardfetcher) [(txt)](https://api.scryfall.com/cards/09e7dfad-aca9-498d-bd1c-5503b411ca5f?utm_source=mtgcardfetcher&format=text) ^^^[[cardname]] ^^^or ^^^[[cardname|SET]] ^^^to ^^^call


The only two things that would make me consider a vanilla creature over a non-vanilla would be: superior early game availability and/or superior late game permanence. Power isn't as important (takes a turn to use, can be blocked, makes the creature a priority removal target, etc). The only value a vanilla can give is to be on the board for as long as possible. That means being able to enter very early or having superior toughness in the later turns (vs opposing creatures, -x/-x effects, non-combat damage spells). All decent vanillas should be non-legendary and have generic mana costs at least, but ideally, phyrexian mana costs is what's needed. With that, the stats shouldn't have to be broken, just decent, specially toughness. Their tribes shouldn't be top-tier, just middling, otherwise tribe-specific synergies could blow the vanilla's value out of proportion. Competitive vanillas would look like this to me: \-1cmc: phyrexian mana 2/2 \-2cmc: generic and phyrexian mana 4/4 \-3cmc: generic and phyrexian mana 5/7


[[Leatherback Baloth]] use to see a lot of play in Modern. [[Woolly Thoctar]] also seen play.


[Leatherback Baloth](https://c1.scryfall.com/file/scryfall-cards/normal/front/5/5/55f97b4c-42c7-4986-a150-0b8de11f0537.jpg?1562287740) - [(G)](http://gatherer.wizards.com/Pages/Card/Details.aspx?name=Leatherback%20Baloth) [(SF)](https://scryfall.com/card/wwk/107/leatherback-baloth?utm_source=mtgcardfetcher) [(txt)](https://api.scryfall.com/cards/55f97b4c-42c7-4986-a150-0b8de11f0537?utm_source=mtgcardfetcher&format=text) [Woolly Thoctar](https://c1.scryfall.com/file/scryfall-cards/normal/front/c/f/cf7188d8-d37f-49ec-ab52-8ea080725ca7.jpg?1593814757) - [(G)](http://gatherer.wizards.com/Pages/Card/Details.aspx?name=Woolly%20Thoctar) [(SF)](https://scryfall.com/card/mm3/203/woolly-thoctar?utm_source=mtgcardfetcher) [(txt)](https://api.scryfall.com/cards/cf7188d8-d37f-49ec-ab52-8ea080725ca7?utm_source=mtgcardfetcher&format=text) ^^^[[cardname]] ^^^or ^^^[[cardname|SET]] ^^^to ^^^call


No vanilla creature will ever be playable until removal are all over the place like now. Also having a 1 Mana 5/5 with no upside will eat a prismatic ending or a push, and you are at parity in term of mana. A 2 mana 10/10 will eat a push, and leave space to your opponent to play a ragavan or a drc, leaving you behind. A underpowered creature like Wall of omen at least give you back a card.