Hello everyone, and welcome back to Legit MTG. I hope you all are well, and have a safe Independence Day weekend. Holidays during the warmer parts of the year are some of my favorites, but not necessarily for celebrating the holiday. Being able to relax, and spending time with friends or family can be just enough of a recharge to get you going once the work week starts up again. During these holidays there may be games that you play which you may only play with them on the weekends, or rarely play at all. That’s okay. It’s not much of an investment to keep up with, and the game can be sealed in amber waiting to be taken off the shelf to be played again. Wizards of the Coast has released a new Magic: the Gathering product that could very much be that.
Jumpstart is a new product, and new way to play, released on July 17th (so get your pre-orders in over at LegitMTG!). With Jumpstart each pack is themed, and while there may be multiples of the same theme they won’t be 100% the same. Some themes include Goblins, Dogs, Phyrexians, and more. So why is this possibly the best product ever? Let’s dig in.
- Ease of play
When trying to introduce new players to Magic: the Gathering handing them your already tuned constructed deck may be too daunting. Even learning the ropes through a Commander preconstructed deck may be too much of a leap. While the free Welcome Decks are also a good way to introduce someone to the game, what if that player never wishes to move beyond that? Jumpstart addresses that while making the play experience fun for experienced and novice players all at once. You, and your opponent start out with two packs each. Each pack has a pre-built theme such as Cats, or Angels, or even Zombies. Open your packs, shuffle your cards together (which will be 40 cards as they come in packs of 20), and play. It really is that simple.
You can even make this more fun by not looking at the cards ahead of time so you can be completely surprised by what themes you combined. There are 46 theme packs overall, and some themes may seem to duplicate themselves. Some themes are considered rare, and some mythic, and your box may have multiples of a common theme. That’s okay as this set is meant to be played two packs at a time right from the box. Once you’re done you can disassemble the decks leaving the 20 card packs separate from each other, and pick another combination to battle again. That to me is the most fun I would have with this product especially when teaching someone to play, or just playing for fun. You could add other cards to these decks over time, keep them as is, or mix multiple copies of themes together to make one mega battle. It’s your world. Battle how you want.
- Reprints. Reprints Everywhere
Just like in Core Set 2021 Wizards of the Coast has not put the breaks on reprints, and wow are there a lot. Here’s a brief list of some of the key reprints.
- Archon of Justice
- Baneslayer Angel
- Isamaru, Hound of Konda
- Kor Spiritdancer
- Linvala, Keeper of Silence
- Path to Exile
…and that’s nowhere near all of them.
Anytime a new product is released one of the first questions asked is how many reprints will this have. While Jumpstart will have 37 new cards in it, and many cards from Core Set 2021 (including the mono colored planeswalkers), the new cards will not be legal in any formats outside of Legacy, Commander, and Vintage. The reprints will be legal in whatever formats their original print is legal in. As an ancillary product Jumpstart provides a lot already with just these two points.
However there is another benefit to this set.
- Historic implications
While Magic Arena normally is not something used to measure how great a product is for the first time (with the exception of these cards, and a list of the replacements here) Wizards of the Coast will have cards in a new paper product not designed for Standard play impact the Magic Arena only format of Historic. What a great way to introduce someone to Magic through not only paper play, but also to Arena. As much as I would rather play in paper at a store right now Magic Arena has become the primary way many Magic: the Gathering players play the game. While it does not have Modern (nor do I think it will for a long time if ever) the continued growth of formats such as Historic, and 1-on-1 Brawl does provide the program some measure of flexibility in what it can offer. Adding these cards in Jumpstart will help boost that popularity for sure.
Imagine if you have a Thassa, Deep Dwelling in play, and casting Thragtusk. The value you’ll receive when Thassa triggers is enough to build a deck around. Adding Goblin Chieftain, or Elvish Archdruid to their respective tribes could make those classic tribal decks more viable, and overall this format, which is still not fully explored, will become a home to brew many different strategies keeping the game fresh.
From the ability to play casually with a friend, collect to make a deck of your own design, and access to needed reprints for various formats this set packs quite a punch. Between this, and Core Set 2021 there have been a lot of reprints for those of us who play formats such as Modern, and Double Masters isn’t even here yet. I hope you all get a chance to play Jumpstart, especially with someone who has never played Magic: the Gathering, as I think this set’s design is a Radical Idea. I hope they do this again in a few years.
It’s construction time again. I’ll be brewing up a deck for Modern that I have missed playing as it has one of my favorite planeswalkers in it. Stay tuned.
TAP MORE MANA!!!
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