I wasn’t fortunate enough to be playing magic when Innistrad was printed but it has left quite the mark on Modern and Legacy with some really strong cards.  So I’m pretty excited about the Shadows Over Innistrad announcement that Wizards made on Halloween.  I’m personally hoping that the shadow is being cast by Emrakul and my fiancé even suggested that Sorin escaped to Innistrad where Emrakul is hunting him.  That feather turning black and oozing also made me wonder if the demons return.  No matter what ends up happening, the idea of returning to Innistrad excites me and I am once again back on the hype train.

The original Innistrad was clutch for eternal formats and really helped shaped the meta that we have today for both Modern and Legacy.  Cards that still see major play include [casthaven]Delver of Secrets[/casthaven], [casthaven]Snapcaster Mage[/casthaven], [casthaven]Ancient Grudge[/casthaven], [casthaven]Past in Flames[/casthaven], [casthaven]Liliana of the Veil[/casthaven], [casthaven]Stony Silence[/casthaven], [casthaven]Geist of Saint Traft[/casthaven] (and if you’re interested in playing with this in Legacy check out this great article by Aaron Gazzaniga, my lovely fiancé), [casthaven]Unburial Rites[/casthaven], and [casthaven]Olivia Voldaren[/casthaven]; and that is only if you’re looking at the Innistrad set and not the whole block.

Now I don’t think we’re going to be fortunate enough to see reprints of [casthaven]Liliana of the Veil[/casthaven] and [casthaven]Snapcaster Mage[/casthaven] (though if we do there is a really good chance you’ll be seeing me play standard!) but I do believe the strong flavor and mechanics of Innistrad returning have a good chance to bring us some new toys in the eternal formats.  Wizards has made it quite obvious that they will be continuing on with the Gothic Horror theme from the original block which hopefully means more graveyard and tribal fun.  While I don’t expect any tribal aspects of the set to make a huge impact on Legacy or Modern (though I won’t rule it out) I do think the graveyard mechanics have a good chance of finding their way into the format.

There are three major mechanics from Innistrad that I’m really hoping to see in Shadows:  Flashback, Transform, and Morbid.


[casthaven]Cabal Therapy[/casthaven], [casthaven]Bump in the Night[/casthaven], [casthaven]Desperate Ravings[/casthaven], [casthaven]Ancient Grudge[/casthaven], [casthaven]Dread Return[/casthaven], [casthaven]Faithless Looting[/casthaven], [casthaven]Lingering Souls[/casthaven], [casthaven]Past in Flames[/casthaven], and [casthaven]Unburial Rites[/casthaven] are all powerful cards with flashback that have found their way into Modern and Legacy.  It’s already proven itself as a strong mechanic. With the love it receives and how well it can fit into the Gothic Horror theme of Innistrad, I think that we have a good chance at it returning.  Storm, while still a good deck, hasn’t been overtaking Modern or Legacy so hopefully Wizards won’t be too nervous about releasing new possible toys for it.  Though who knows what they may do, even unintentionally, as they don’t test eternal formats heavily.


There are already several standard legal cards that transform right now and the mechanic is not only loved but is doing well.  [casthaven]Jace, Vryn’s Prodigy[/casthaven] is seeing play in Standard, Legacy and Modern at the moment so I’m hoping that is encouraging Wizards to use the transform mechanic some more.  In addition the Wolfir were such a huge part of Innistrad that I would be surprised if it was left out.  Currently Standard has limited top-deck manipulation so I guess it’s possible we could even see a [casthaven]Delver of Secrets[/casthaven] reprint, but with the new Vancouver Mulligan I think that is extremely unlikely.


My main reason I think we will see morbid returning is that it has such good synergy with Battle for Zendikar.  Sacrificing Eldrazi Scions to cast spells while also triggering morbid seems like too much fun to pass off.  It’s also a strong mechanic that is dependable.  I’m sure after discovering how broken delve can be Wizards would like to use some mechanics that are tried and true.

Overall I think Shadows Over Innistrad has potential to be a phenomenal set.  Battle for Zendikar has proven to be a decent return so far and I hope that they do even better in Shadows.  When spoilers start coming out I’m going to try to remember to revisit this article when the set finally gets spoiled.

Kate hails from Worcester MA and also does a bit of Card Altering. Check her Stuff out on Facebook! She mainly plays legacy and modern though will occasionally find herself playing EDH. She has recently succumbed to MTGO.

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