Hi guys I’m back to talk about my initial thoughts on the Kaldheim draft and the set overall.
In this set, we have two new abilities that are great for Limited, Foretell and Boast making Limited much more enjoyable and taking a little of the non-games of screw and flood.
Wizards simply spot-on in this new Limited format and abilities to help mitigate those spots and I really hope we could have more high-level events supporting Limited because they rock!
My intuition about this format led me to think that each color was about two great commons and then the level downgrades a lot. So, we’ll be leaning a lot more in the uncommon and rare section to choose what direction we should take.
I’ll show you my top 2 commons of each color and then the 3rdish so you can see, in perspective, what I’m talking about.
Top 3 Best Common of Each Color
Well……this is the best common in the set. The grade of this card is super high and it’s a great example of why Foretell is so impressive as you will see in the top cards of my ranking.
You can Foretell this on turn 2 and then on turn 3 play it for just 2 mana netting a 3/3 and a card. That’s hugeee!! It’s normal cost is fine too: 3G for a 3/3 that draws a card…sign me in for as many of this card as a deck can possibly play!
Another Foretell card, this is your typical 《Hunt the Weak》 with upside. You can Foretell this for just one green and then you play the card making for a very good double spell that turns to out-tempo your opponent into oblivion.
This is a mana rock elf that needs some setup you will only take full of advantage of this in a snow deck and I will advise playing at least 5+ lands minimum or else you can count this being nothing more than a 《Grizzly Bears》.
1. 《Demon Bolt》
Again the top spot goes to a Foretell card, this one is stronger than 《Struggle for Skemfar》 for a lot of reasons.
First, you need no setup for this to be very good and efficient (no creature needed) and second you can play for the same one mana at instant speed making this a very good common that will do the same thing allowing you to double spell and outplaying your opponent in tempo.
2. 《Frost Bite》
This card is reasonably well-positioned because, in this format, creatures are usually small.
This one is a clearly underrated card but it has been impressive during my experience with this expansion, and it’s a card with the new Boast ability that just demands you to attack with the creature and pay one mana on this to make you reveal the top card of your library and play it until the end of the turn. This card will shine in an ultra-aggressive deck with a low curve and has been one of the sleepers in this set.
You can’t ask for more when you have a common removal of this caliber. 《Feed the Serpent》 does absolutely everything for four mana at instant speed, you can remove literally everything from a small creature to a big planeswalker this would be the best common in the set if I wasn’t in love with 《Sarulf’s Packmate》 and its certainly the best removal card in the set in the common section.
This is another underrated card. I have a natural preference for Aggro decks and this card fits it perfectly as a five mana 4/4, it’s nothing spectacular but the ability to turn up to 2 creatures to get +1/+0 and indestructible makes you punch through most boards without a problem and pushing a lot of damage making it an unpleasant surprise for your opponents.
3. 《Weigh Down》
This card was “upper” in my initial ranking but has been rather disappointing to be honest. I will always play the first copy but the 2nd and third might be straining in your hand for a while if you are not careful, so don’t pick this too highly at least the extra copies.
Another Foretell staple card taking the top spot. This one is for the guys that play magic for a long time……they will remember the dreadful 《Phantom Monster》 that would dominate boards and win games alone. Well……magic has developed a lot to a Power Creep basis, etc etc but this card is another great example of the new mechanic card, you can Foretell on turn 2 and play a 3/3 flying for two mana on turn 3 and that’s great stats and of course you can just play it for 3U for a 3/3 flier and that’s totally fine especially in this format where Flying is really good.
Do you remember 《Glimmer of Genius》? Well, this is a better version because you can Foretell this on turn 2 and play it later for a cheaper cost. When you are not being rushed, the card selection this card provides you makes it really hard to either be a screw or don’t have action late game so it’s super powerful in any state game of Limited.
Blue has been taking a lot of good removal cards for Limited formats in the last sets. 《Bubble Snare》 on this one, we got the blue vendetta for one mana you lose life equal to is power and taps the creature forever this card is great mana wise but you have to be careful as multiple copies may strain your life too much other than that I’ve been pretty happy with this card.
Blue is the only color that I think has 3 very good (and close with each other) common cards with the still underrated card looming around that I will explore in another section.
The typical “《Arrest》” you get when there are vehicles in the set this card stops almost anything and I would play as many copies as I get if I was playing white.
Another card that got upgraded……this is your humble 《Snapping Drake》 that could cost 2 mana if you remove a creature and this is a big bonus that will certainly play in most aggro decks with some sort of low curve to take advantage of double spelling into this quite early in the game.
Another Foretell card that’s cheap enough, only one white mana for a 3/2 that make your turns of double spelling quite easy with a small upside of giving you 2 life. A very important card in one of the archetypes I will reveal later.
The Sleeper’s Section
So now that we got the top commons of each color out of the way I will tell you the cards that are still quite underrated in my opinion, and will be better than you expect!
Let me call the sleeper’s section.
1. 《Run Amok》
This card is bonkers in any Aggro deck and one of the best tricks in WR Aggro a archetype that I love in this format so don’t sleep on this one! We are in a presence of a reprint and you should be aware of its potential already……trust me……I’m not an engineer but close enough to “buy” this expression.
Some decks, especially the UR Giants one, will pick this above all the 《Augury Raven》 and I wouldn’t be surprised that later in the format this will become just a better card than 《Augury Raven》 I’m still not there but it’s a possibility as Changeling enables a lot of things in this set.
These 3 drops have been impressing me a lot in the red Aggro decks if your curve is low enough as it should. This card is a premium 3 drop that will help you gain card advantage almost for free either it be land or just another 2 or 3 drops you will be gaining an advantage while beating your opponent down.
This card is literally a dig for a time in a giants deck it gives you so much card selection while asking for so little. Remember the 《Mistwalker》 pick I told you? Changeling is a real upside in this format.
5. Snow Lands
As always people will not pick as high as they should be. I remember when 《Karoo》 lands wheeled in the first Ravnica set and by the end of the set people would be first picking it, snow lands aren’t that powerful or close to it but remember they are really valuable in the archetype. Don’t be a sleeper in this one!
Top 4 Archetypes
Last but not least I will give you the 4 top archetypes I have been enjoying playing the most in the Kaldheim draft:
1. WR Aggro
A surprise to absolutely nobody, I prefer Aggro decks in the draft with low curve and in this format, WR is one of them the mixture of boast plus double spelling is very appealing to me together with as many 《Run Amok》 as you can get your hand it will make a nightmare for your opponents to play against.
2. 5C Snow
Key factors: You can play almost any rare you open or get passed.
It’s not normally my cup of tea but this archetype is very powerful as you can play almost any rare you open or get passed plus all the top uncommon. Your main colors will always be Green and Blue.
Green fixes and ramp your mana with 《Glittering Frost》 plus 《Sculptor of Winter》 and blue will give you the card selection you need to not flood out or screw in like 《Behold the Multiverse》 and the rest is just trying to open good uncommon and premium rares. For uncommon I can give you the example of 《Spirit of the Aldergard》 as it’s a huge beater plus fixes your mana.
The advantages of the snow deck are that in the mid to late game you will overperform any “average joe deck” with ease. Another underrated card that helps you do that in this archetype is 《Ravenous Lindwurm》 6 mana 6/6 that gains 4 life will stabilize almost any board while quickly making you go in the offensive to close the game.
3. Mono White or WB Double Spell Deck
This deck is the lowest curve decks you will get on this format and you will be focusing on one drop and a lot of foretold cards, I will leave you with a good example of this deck with a picture of Ryan Saxe’s deck that shows you how a good Mono White double spell.
The deck looks like this:
-Land (13)- 6 《Battlefield Raptor》
3 《Codespell Cleric》
2 《Usher of the Fallen》
2 《Clarion Spirit》
1 《Beskir Shieldmate》
1 《Story Seeker》
1 《Doomskar Oracle》
1 《Goldmaw Champion》
1 《Righteous Valkyrie》
1 《Stalwart Valkyrie》
4. UR Giants
Finally, we go to our last archetype and that’s UR Giants
This archetype normally has a sub-theme of snow cards as a lot of giants get better with snow, Changeling is MVP in this archetype as 《Mistwalker》 and 《Littjara Kinseekers》 will help you keep the giant count elevated.
Key Factors/Cards: 《Berg Strider》 – Huge 《Chillbringer》 that requires you to have 1 snow mana to be gas, 《Squash》 – this one is premium in this deck 2 mana 6 damage to a creature or planeswalker, at instant speed is just bonkers and one of the reasons 《Mistwalker》 is MVP in this archetype, 《Glimpse the Cosmos》 – another card that’s obviously great in the giant deck if you have any key card or bomb this card will dig as much as possible and look for whatever you need.
Well, this is my first impressions of the set I’m sure it will evolve with time and a lot of things will be clearer. I hope you guys enjoyed this article as much as I writing it!
And good luck with all your drafts or sealed deck 😀
Marcio Carvalho (Twitter)