You can snag Conspiracy:
Take the Crown this Friday, August 26th and begin drafting it with your
friends, or nemeses, that night at FNM. Before then, however, you might want to
check out the card image gallery for the set so you know what you’re getting
into. What better way to rule the throne of Paliano than to scheme ahead of
As a draft-matters set,
Conspiracy: Take the Crown is (obviously) built around limited play. Like any
other limited experience, scheming will be easier if you know what the colors
want to be doing in these multiplayer games. You’ll ideally be drafting a
two-color deck (plenty of caveats apply in this set), so today I’ll be going
over how each two-color pair wants to seize control of Paliano. This is a
fairly loose set, so these archetypes are far less focused than most
expansions. Take them with a grain of salt, using them more like guidelines
than actual rules.
Skies decks are the same in every limited format; you
bolster the ground and strike in the air. The idea is that if you play a defensive
game, you can pick at your opponents with your evasive threats over the course
of many turns. If your fortress is impregnable, you’ll eventually win through
This is a little trickier in multiplayer, since you have
to defend against multiple enemies at once. White and Blue are full of
creatures with high toughness, however, so make sure to pick some of those up
to go with your fliers. Spells that make it difficult for your opponents to
attack you help as well, from defensive cards to bounce to tapping down
This color combination is doing what it does best: grind
out a long game by having the most resources. Both Blue and Black have a number
of controlling cards, meaning this archetype wants to play defensively and
patiently. Even when it seems like it’s being helpful, Blue/Black is just
secretly stabbing you in the back.
Group Thug is a play style filled with cards that affect
all players/opponents. Those effects tend to be negative, but incremental so
that they don’t get too annoying. You’ll eventually wear your opponents out and
be able to win with some evasive threats. Limited decks are only 40 cards,
however, and long games could see some opponents lose for drawing their entire
Things that happen in a regular game of Magic happen much more often in a game
of multiplayer Magic. This archetype
aims to take advantage of one of those things: death. Death happens a lot, from
combat to removal spells to board sweepers. If everything is dying, but you’re
the one benefitting from the deaths, you’ll come out ahead in the end.
Black/Red decks can be on the faster side, aiming to
trade creatures in combat; or play a slow game utilizing removal spells to
craft a board state in which your creatures have the best attacks.
In a world where players are building walls, you may want
to be the one aiming to knock ‘em back down. Red/Green focuses on the returning
monstrosity mechanic. While these creatures are decently costed when you cast
them, they are downright frightening when you make them monstrous later in the
The key to victory here is to have the biggest and
meanest creatures on the board. Turn them sideways and watch your opponents
struggle to defeat them in combat! Hold them back as impenetrable guard-monsters!
You’ll win through pure power in this color combination.
While Green/White is also built around creatures, it’s
more concerned with curving out early-drops into late-drops. You’ll want to
pick some small, aggressive White creatures and follow them up with some beefy
In fact, just play as many creatures as you can. The more
creatures you control, the easier it will be to both attack and defend against
multiple opponents. If you can produce enough creatures, even three opponents
will be able to muster enough removal to stop your stampede!
Seizing, and keeping, the crown is the goal of
White/Black. This archetype features the new monarch mechanic. At the beginning
of your end step, if you’re the monarch, you’ll draw an extra card. An opponent
can steal your crown by dealing combat damage to you however, so you better
protect your noggin at all costs!
This is a defensive, controlling strategy. You’ll want
high-toughness creatures, lots of removal, and cards that make your opponents
not want to attack you. All the extra cards you’ll draw will let you bleed your
opponents’ life totals down and get in a few attacks here and there. You’ll
amass so many resources that your enemies will have no choice but to bow in
Flashes of aether! Crackles of lightning! Spellslinging
the is the name of Blue/Red’s game. Cast powerful instants and sorceries in
order to control the game as your creatures lay down some sick beats.
Your Red spells are going to be doing a lot of damage,
while your Blue cards should focus on drawing more cards and removing blockers.
Both colors also have access to the goad mechanic, which can direct attacks as
your opponents instead of you (I wrote all about goad on Monday.) Your flurry
of spells should dazzle and confuse your opponents, leaving you victorious when
the smoke clears.
These colors don’t really have a specific archetype. You’ll
play Black/Green when the colors are open, taking all the best cards you can
find. It’s not an awful color pair for a Good Stuff deck either; most games of
limited are won on the backs of efficient removal and powerful creatures. Guess
what Black and Green excel at?
You’re not really looking for synergistic cards here,
just raw power. Tutors becomes very good, as you can just dig up your haymakers
and call it a day. Black has some graveyard manipulation, ensuring you always
have the best creatures ready to rumble. Kill things, beat faces in, and smile
while doing it.
Aggressive decks are difficult to build in multiplayer
games, but the melee mechanic makes it possible. By attacking all your
opponents at once, your creatures gain huge boosts to their power and
toughness. You’ll be able to dash out early, prevent your opponents from
developing their defenses, and finish them quickly.
You want to priorities cheap creatures, fliers, and
combat tricks here. Anything that lets your creatures attack without being
blocked is a good thing to draft. If you can find a few really good defensive
creatures, they can help you stay alive in longer games as your evasive
attackers finish the job.
Card advantage is the key to the Green/Blue archetype. If
you see more cards than your opponents, you’ll hit more land drops. If you hit
more land drops, you’ll be able to cast more and better spells.
Green ramps your mana so that you can cast your creatures
while also using Blue spells to draw cards and control the board. Cards with
repeatable effects that cost mana will be very useful to you. You’ll be able to
generate incredible value over the course of a game due to your overwhelming
abundance of resources. Your deck will snowball and become unstoppable.
One road leads to the top: conspiracy. Stab your friends
in their backs, plot elaborate misdirections, and claim the crown of Paliano as
your own. Each color combination has its own strategy to become the rightful
heir to the throne, from stalwart defensive to blitzing assaults to
Which path will you skulk along in your quest for
greatness, planeswalkers? Head to your local game store this Friday night and
This is something that I’ve thought about a lot, and I’ve always had trouble implementing it. Sort of. Cipher is interesting, but it feels like so much is spent sitting on a creature that can’t really get through to your opponent. With a higher cost, the rewards for integrating these cards are also higher, and can go into any kind of deck at various levels of play.
Things that are similar to morphling can be seen has having a lot of potential. Disciple of the Ring though unfortunately did not see too much play in standard, mostly due ot the restriction of having to exile an instant or sorcery as well as paying a mana. Though with that extra cost, a few of the abilities got a little more potent. Being able to counter a spell for the cost of exiling a card from your graveyard is pretty good by any means, especially if your opponents forget and tap out for a big spell. Other than that the card is largely mediocre in EDH, and is probably best in a wizards tribal shell. Still, it’s a card I’m glad to have, and the idea of using this card eventually is really appealing.