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Return of familiar and not so familiar mechanics is what the internet is going crazy over when 4 new mechanics were revealed and one old mechanic making a come back.
- Selesnya – Convoke
- Dimir – Surveil
- Boros – Mentor
- Golgari – Undergrowth
- Izzet – Jump-Start
Selesnya pioneered the go-wide strategy and is quite the best at cluttering the board with tokens of all sorts. In the original Ravnica block, tokens come in the form of Saprolings, Centaurs, Ooze, Frogs, Soldiers, Birds and Knights. We saw a somewhat token theme in Amonkhet with zombies but I am pretty excited to see what token types will Guilds of Ravnica offer.
Looking at the rotation-proof sets we have now, Legion’s Landing might be useful again and can be quite easy to flip. History of Benalia can also spike if GoR will feature knights. Saprolings was a prominent creature type in the old Ravnica so cards like Tendershoot Dryad may see competitive play.
Going wide? Cards like Pride of Conquerors will make fast go-wide decks kill just as fast. Radiant Destiny is now a cheap card that may see a price jump if a specific creature type gets a lot of love. Then planeswalkers like Huatli, Radiant Champion can become more than just a bulk mythic. I’m actually buying some copies of this while she’s cheap.
I haven’t even mentioned Convoke yet but I’m sure powerful cards that costs a lot can be easily cheated with Dominaria’s tokens.
Surveil was described as a scry-like ability but instead of tucking it underneath your library, you can choose to dump it to the graveyard. What does this mean? A lot of graveyard manipulation, that’s what.
Dimir colors over access to Sultai archetypes and cards like Search for Azcanta gets flipped faster, Journey to Eternity will have more targets to fish, and cards like Muldrotha will really enjoy a plump discard pile. Not to mention the limited M19 bomb, Isareth, she too will have a lot of fun.
Mentor, was described as a creature ability that puts a +1/+1 counter on an attacking creature with power less than the ‘Mentor’. Similar to the old Simic mechanic ‘Evolve’, where a +1/+1 counter is placed on a creature when a bigger creature hits the battlefield.
The good thing about Evolve is that everyone who is eligible to get a counter will get it, while Mentor looks like a single-target ability. Nonetheless, a very fast deck that curves its power nicely will benefit a lot from this ability. Coupled with Haste, Mentor can screw your opponent’s math thinking they can take the hit but then die because of this wrong assumption. You can also choose to pump the Mentor to keep its power higher than your other creatures to keep the counters flowing.
If you think about cards like Sigiled Sword of Valeron, the 2/2 knight creature it generates can get a +1/+1 counter if you attached this to the Mentor. Cool right? I bet Boros will have neat equipment cards or pump cards.
Undergrowth was explained as a bonus given to a permanent the more creatures you have in your graveyard.
Dumping so many creatures into your graveyard is very easy for Golgari, and today’s post-rotation standard sets already have the auxiliary cards to do this.
Cards like Stitcher’s Supplier dumps 6 cards one way or another. Explore cards like Jadelight Ranger also does a great job tipping your top card over. Then we have Planeswalkers like Liliana that mills you over with added value. There’s really a lot of ways to dump cards into the yard and I am very stoked to see how we can abuse Undergrowth in the new standard.
Izzet ready yet? One of the most underrated guilds from the original Ravnica, I really hope Jump-Start will give creature-less decks a huge pay-off. It’s essentially allows you to re-play instant or sorceries from your graveyard by discard a card and paying the cost. It’s like flashback but you ditch a card, or rebound but instead of discarding a land, it can be any card. But are there cards worth jump starting? Hell yes!
Red has a lot of spells worth re-casting and there are also cards that go back to your hand to allow you to essentially discard multiple times to re-cast your value spells. The Mirari Conjecture is also another card that returns cards back to your hand and at the same time doubles the spells you’re trying to cast which is a win-win for the Izzet club!
There’s a lot of ways to anticipate how Ravnica will interact with Dominaria and Ixalan cards and how it can potentially create new archetypes beyond Chainwhirlers, Teferi and Ghalta.
I am very excited for spoiler season and I bet you are as well! That’s it for now, talk to you soon!