Hello, and welcome to my Kamigawa: Neon Dynasty Limited Set Review! I’ll be going over each and every card, and giving it a rating plus commentary, with an eye towards Limited play. As always, the comments plus the grade give you the complete picture, so make sure to keep both in mind when considering a card. Here’s the grading scale I’ll be using, complete with examples from the last set.
You can check out the other colors here:
Retired and inducted into the Limited Hall of Fame: Pack Rat, Umezawa’s Jitte, The Scarab God.
- 5.0: The best of the best. (Halana and Alena. Avabruck Caretaker. Wedding Announcement. Ulvenwald Oddity. Anje, Maid of Dishonor. Ill-Tempered Loner. Sorin the Mirthless. Toxrill, the Corrosive. Dreadfeast Demon. Hullbreaker Horror. Katilda, Dawnhart Martyr.)
- 4.5: Incredible bomb, but not unbeatable. (Cemetery Protector. Henrika Domnathi. Manaform Hellkite.)
- 4.0: Good rare or top-tier uncommon. (Bloodtithe Harvester. Alluring Suitor. Ballista Watcher.)
- 3.5: Top-tier common or solid uncommon. (Bleed Dry. Abrade. Lantern Bearer.)
- 3.0: Good playable that basically always makes the cut. (Falkenrath Celebrants. Bloodcrazed Socialite. Cruel Witness.)
- 2.5: Solid playable that rarely gets cut. (Syncopate. Desperate Farmer. Blood Petal Celebrant.)
- 2.0: Good filler, but sometimes gets cut. (Fearful Villager. Apprentice Sharpshooter. Undying Malice.)
- 1.5: Filler. Gets cut about half the time. (Vampire Slayer. Snarling Wolf. Alchemist’s Retrieval.)
- 1.0: Bad filler. Gets cut most of the time. (Unholy Officiant. Bramble Armor.)
- 0.5: Very low-end playables and sideboard material. (Raze the Effigy. Plummet.)
- 0.0: Completely unplayable. (Splendid Reclamation. One with Nothing.)
I like starting with the mechanics of the set – it helps set the stage for when we encounter the cards that have them (and helps give context for why you might want to care about card types, or 1/1 fliers, or the like).
NEO has a lot of artifacts (including ones in each color), so it’s no surprise that one of the themes pays you off just for having artifacts. There are plenty of cards that give you value for casting or controlling artifacts, and it makes being an artifact intrinsically worth something. If you don’t have any of those cards, you can mostly ignore this theme, but it does make cheap artifacts more valuable than they would be otherwise.
This also makes artifact removal better, especially since the artifact type shows up a lot more than usual.
Like the artifact theme, enchantments matter in NEO. There are a bunch of enchantment creatures running around, and various cards pay you off for having enchantments. One of the main places this shows up is the WB theme of having one artifact plus one enchantment, so it’s usually less about having tons of enchantments than having a couple. Like with the artifact theme, this also makes enchantment removal better.
Ninjas are back, and they are as sneaky as usual. Ninjutsu gives you a lot of value if you can get in unblocked attacks, which unsurprisingly rewards cheap evasive creatures, ways to get creatures through (especially low-cost ones) and combat tricks. The opponent is also more likely to block against potential Ninjas, which is why combat tricks become a lot more appealing.
Reconfigure is a brand-new keyword, and a sweet one at that. Cards with reconfigure are both Equipment and creatures type-wise, and you can pay the reconfigure cost to go back and forth. When equipped on a creature, they grant whatever their text box says (it’s important to note that it isn’t necessarily their stats or abilities as creatures, though some do write that out). They help solve the problem of having Equipment but no creatures to put it on, and tend to be creatures early game and Equipment later, depending on the reconfigure cost. It’s a lot cheaper to trade off a creature wearing one of these than pay the reconfigure cost to unattach, so try and avoid paying if you don’t have to.