After going to a prerelease at my LGS with my brothers this past weekend, as well as jamming several drafts during the Arena Early Access day, I am looking forward to everyone getting a chance to dive into Streets of New Capenna Limited! Speaking of the prerelease, I want to take a quick second to say what a huge win for Magic and WotC it was to have the paper prerelease in advance of the digital release of SNC in my opinion.
As a Magic Boomer, one of my favorite things as a kid was going to a prerelease weekend with my brothers. Back in those days, I knew some of the cards in advance, but I hadn’t done any real preparation. The excitement of opening actual packs of Magic cards and getting to build a deck with new cards was on par, if not better than Christmas! While I was much more prepared this time around thanks to assembling the Lords of Limited Crash Course, the experience of the SNC paper prerelease still captured the essence of all of the things I enjoyed about it as a kid.
If SNC had been released digitally first, I would have been holed up in my apartment jamming as many drafts as possible while I opened up a huge knowledge gap between myself and my brothers. Because of the paper prerelease, we were able to experience the new set together on equal footing and discuss how all of the new cards performed. While everyone might not be lucky enough to have brothers to attend a prerelease with, I’m sure there are many folks that can relate to roping a slightly less invested friend or two into going to the prerelease since it came out in paper before it did on Arena. My two cents: I had a blast at the SNC prerelease, and I really hope that WotC continues this for future sets.
Okay… enough with the feel-good personal stories and onwards to the strategy content so you can get those Ws in your first draft!
Before discussing my top 10 Underrated Overperformers in SNC, I want to give an idea of my current picture of the format. Granted, I’ve only done four drafts at this point, but I feel like I have a plan for how to approach drafts now. Will it change over the next few days as I draft more? Almost certainly, but this might give you a plan or help you find a way to adapt my plan to fit your own draft style.
Here are some tips for drafting a three-color shard format if you haven’t done it before:
- You should try to start your drafts as an allied color pair. There will be two-color allied commons and uncommons to help guide you through this.
- Starting as an allied color pair allows you to easily pivot between two families. For example, RB is contained in both the Maestros and the Riveteers.
- Lands are going to be high picks because they allow you to cast your powerful gold cards on time more reliably. In addition, it’s common to play 18 lands since you’re drafting fetchlands, have allied sacrifice duals and need more lands to have more sources of colors for your gold cards.
- Even if your deck is three or four colors, you should still attempt to have an allied color pair as your base colors with a splash of a third or fourth color. You will need a lot of multicolored lands to draft a true three-color family deck.
So how does all of that affect how I’m approaching SNC after doing a few drafts?