Writing in three colors Magic: The Gathering may seem intimidating for new players and casual gamers, but the Streets of New Capenna The limited format is not as difficult as it seems at first glance.
The last set of tricolor shards released by Wizards of the Coast dates back to the Alara block from 2008 to 2009, providing the MTG color names: Bant (WUG), Esper (WUB), Grixis (UBR), Jund (BRG) and Naya (WRG). All tricolor factions of Streets of New Capenna (CNS) are allied colors, making it easy to draft three or more colors in a limited release. There are a total of 10 archetypes in the New Capenna Limited format.
How to prioritize draft picks
Each of the five ally color archetypes synergizes well with the five faction archetypes, and there are even cross synergies occurring as well. When the New Capenna set releases, most players should prioritize early picks towards ally colors, at least until the meta starts to resolve. This allows a drafter to remain open to drafting at least two tricolor factions, and possibly splashing out a fourth.
A majority of tricolor New Capenna Limited versions will have two main colors, with the third being added for synergies and powerful cards. Players are unlikely to want to draft only two colors; the set has been designed to have optimal power levels via three colors. And players can choose to move in four or even five colors if the opportunity arises without being punished due to the amount of mana fixed in the CNS Position.
Here is all the mana fixing in the New Capenna Limited format:
- Tri-lands: Rare earths that synergize with each of the five factions and have Cycling.
- Reclaim Land: Uncommon lands that sacrifice immediately to go for a basic land that synergizes with one of the five factions while gaining you a life.
- Dual Lands: common lands that arrive tapped, representing two colors, and can be sacrificed by paying a mana cost to draw a card.
- Treasure: Treasure Tokens are everywhere if you know where to look.
- Mana Binding Creatures: A cycle of five common creatures that have the ability to exile themselves for two mana of any color, providing a target land with three additional colors it can tap for. The creature can be cast at any time, but the land returns to its normal mana color.
The majority of common rarity cards are on the weaker side, with Jewel Thief and Inspiring Overseer as obvious exceptions. This leaves most of the uncommon rarity New Capenna cards full of power, especially gold CNS cards.
New Capenna factions, archetypes and mechanics
Several faction sets have been released since, the most recent being Strixhaven: The School of Mages. There are a total of five factions within the CNS together and five allied two-color archetypes that intersect in these factions, making a total of 10 archetypes in the New Capenna Limited format.
Unlike the STX together, each of the five factions in CNS has a unique mechanic. These mechanics assign an identity to three-color archetypes while two-color ally archetypes are fairly straightforward, synergizing with multiple factions. There is also a sub-mechanic within the New Capenna Limited format, rewarding players when five or more mana values are in your graveyard.
- Red/Black (RB): Sacrifice
- Blue/Black (UB): Five or more mana values of cards in graveyard
- White/Blue (WU): Tokens and creatures with Flying
- White/Green (WG): Citizen-type and large-scale creature tokens
- Red/Green (RG): Treasure tokens and creatures with Range
- Cabaretti (WRG): Heavy construction of alliances and creatures
- Masters (UBR): Losses with sacrifice and against synergies
- Riveters (BRG): Blitz with aggressive gameplay and sacrificial synergies
- Obscure (WUB): Know graveyard questions and card advantage
- Brokers (WUG): Shield Counters with aggressive gameplay synergies
Best rare and common New Capenna Limited Cards
Tricolor drafts allow for creativity and skill expression when building your New Capenna Limited game. Players can choose two-color archetypes, taking an aggressive approach to what will likely be a slower-paced meta. There’s also the option to run a three-color archetype while splashing a fourth for a bomb. Here’s a full breakdown of each top CNS Uncommon and common, so players know what to splash and what to grab New Capenna Limited project.
crossing New Capenna Limited synergies
Riveteers and Maestros synergize with themes of sacrifice while the Obscura family can take advantage of these cards in the graveyard via the CNS sub-mechanic. Aggro players can tap into both the Brokers and Cabaretti families while Riveteers can also join the party via the Blitz mechanic. And Blitz pairs well with Maestro’s Connive mechanic via Sacrifice value.
Players should not tunnel their vision into factions and archetypes within the New Capenna Limited format, but rather focused on fixing mana and synergies. Lands are optimal choices and are unlikely to rotate. And players should try to stay open as long as possible in ally colors, prioritizing cards of those colors that are mana fixers or treasure token producers.
Updated April 22 8pm CT: Updated with the best Unusuals and Commons New Capenna Limited draft maps, from lands and artifacts to monochromatic and multicolored.