The eyes of every Magic player in the world are ready to look to Las Vegas, and we’re kicking off the best week of Magic with some Legacy. I’m here to help you get on top of the latest tech so you’re prepared for everything.
Snapcaster Mage is a great way to start off any deck, especially in a format with such a diverse range of targets. Between overpowered card draw spells, cheap and efficient removal, and some of the best countermagic ever, Snapcaster has a myriad of options to choose from in most games. That all of these spells cost between 1 and 3 mana to flashback allows for some consistent and early card advantage.
Loading up your graveyard with spells is great for Snapcaster, but it also sits quite nicely with the Gurmag Angler. BBD and Pikula have been commenting on Twitter about how Gurmag Angler is the best creature in Magic, and it’s hard to argue with a potential 1-mana 5/5 on power level. Immunity to burn spells and Abrupt Decays just further cements how powerful the Angler is. In a format with 1-mana card draw, 1-mana removal, and plenty of fetchlands, an early Angler is a huge threat.
Baleful Strix is cheap enough to threaten planeswalkers, trade up with opposing large creatures such as Tarmogoyf and Gurmag Angler, and replaces itself when it enters the battlefield. That’s a lot of value for a small investment.
Brainstorm has long been called the best card in Legacy, and there’s a good reason for that. A single mana to dig that deep into your deck is already strong, but combining with shuffle effects to get rid of excess cards is fantastic. The protection it gives you in response to a discard spell is just bonus.
Ponder also allows you to dig deep into your deck to find exactly what you’re missing, and a fetchland can make sure you only hit the spells you want.
A full playset of Counterspells wasn’t a common feature of Legacy lists until the Sensei’s Divining Top ban, but it works well. It’s cheap enough that flashing it back with Snapcaster is still valuable, and it’s a great way to interact with your opponent both early and late. There are only 2 Force of Wills, since you don’t want to risk having too much card disadvantage and you’re playing plenty of nonblue cards.
Jace, the Mind Sculptor can reset your Snapcasters and Balefuls, bounce opposing creatures, or just generate card advantage turn in and turn out. Jace is also a win condition when you’re in control of the game by fatesealing up to ultimate, although this deck isn’t counter-heavy enough to be able to do that very often.
Lightning Bolt offers early removal and reach, while Terminate is the perfect removal spell for dealing with creatures of any size. Kolaghan’s Command is extra powerful in matchups where Shatter or Shock are strong, but it is still useful across the board. Making an opponent discard a card while returning a Strix or Snapcaster from your graveyard is real value.
A playset of Thoughtseizes disrupts your opponent, and can flashback early with Snapcaster to take their threat or combos away and keep you way ahead. Simple disruption via discard plus hard Counterspells is really tough for many decks to beat.
Grixis Control has all of the answers to deal with the problems that Legacy can present. With the ability to play a long game or to get a giant creature into play early and protect it, its multiple gears give you a ton of play in a diverse format.