What You Need to Know About Drafting M21

Hello everyone! It’s been a few weeks since I’ve started writing my previous article and I have learned a lot about Drafting Coreset 2021. The format is just as fast as I suspected but that doesn’t mean midrange and control decks are down for the count. There are decks that play a little slower but have huge payoffs that allow them to finish out the game. As promised, I will talk about what Uncommons, Rares, and Mythics you should keep your eye out for but I will also be going deeper into the format so hopefully you can understand exactly why I believe the things i’m about to say to be true.

What I was wrong about:

In my last article I had Shock and Scorching Dragonfire as the top commons in the set and it turns out that was correct. It appears that Dragonfire is actually always better than Shock though so I would start taking those of the Shocks when presented the choice. I was VERY wrong about Final Blow. These types of removal spells usually are lynch pins of the format but this time it’s just not quite enough. Sure, if your opponent has a bomb mythic, it can be useful but a lot of rares and key cards can actually just be killed by Scorching Dragonfire which is the much more efficient card. Final blow is actually such a bad answer to so much of the format that I think it should just straight be taken off my previous list and replaced with Dowsing Tyrannodon which has segmented its way into one of the best cards in the format. Also on that note, while Swift Response is a fine card, I think it just barely misses the list and is replaced by Pridemalkin.

While not appearing to do much, Pridemalkin does a ton of work since the format really rewards playing to the board.

What is going on in the format:

This format is fast but not to where control decks are unplayable. You absolutely have to have ways to affect that board early on though, or you will just get ran over. That being said, you can definitely draft a deck that wants to survive to turn 8-10 and close out the game with big fatties.

Some things to keep in mind while you are drafting your deck:

  1. Curve is exceedingly important, even for control decks. You want to do something just about every turn of the game.

  2. Fliers are a big way that most of the aggressive archetypes in the format close out the game so you want to try to get some ways to deal with them.

  3. Blue-Black reanimator is a real deck and has some very good things to bring back so use your bounce spells and counter spells with some discretion if you can. If you are the Blue-Black reanimator deck, it is totally fine to put a card like Baneslayer Angel or Elder Gargaroth in when you have 5-6 discard outlets and 3-5 ways to bring it back because you have plenty of ways to abuse the power level of the card or simply discard them when you can’t use them. Don’t worry about trying to be cute and put off color basics or tap lands in your deck. Just make sure you can cast all of your Blue and Black spells.

  4. Blue-Red spells exists with both an aggressive version and a controlling version and they are so similar that it is very hard to tell which one you are playing against. Keep cards like Scorching Dragonfire, Frost Breath, Experimental overload, and bounce spells in mind while making your plays.


While being fast, this format still has some really fun and cool things to do. I personally like the pace of the format because there is a lot of punishment for decks that try to do nothing and just rely on some powerful bomb to win them the game. Speaking of bombs, all of them are super fun to play and very first pickable such as: Vito, Thorn of the Dusk Rose, Double Vision in Blue-Red spells, Baneslayer Angel, Elder Gargaroth, Radha Heart of Keld, and the list goes on. Since it’s weirdly kinda late into the format with how easy it is to get data and jam a bunch of drafts thanks to MTG Arena, instead of doing a ranking like my last article, I’ll be talking about key Uncommons and just cards in general for the archetypes of the format in my next visit into the world of Coreset 2021. Until then: stay safe, happy drafting, and I’ll see you in the ques!

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