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Magic 2019 Standard Set Review: Blue

Check out the other entries in the Set Review:


We’re back with more cards from Magic 2019! Today we’ll be doing the color you adore, or the one you love to hate. I feel like there’s no in-between for Blue. Let’s not dilly dally, we got a lot to cover, but first, my review process.

I will not be going over cards that I believe will not see play in Standard. For example, cards like Switcheroo and Gideon's Reproach will be omitted since they are just Limited cards and saying, “This is just a Limited card” repeatedly gets old rather fast. Don’t worry though, I will be covering all the rare and mythic cards in the set. So, if you like a certain rare or mythic, it will be mentioned in the review.

Keep in mind I’m rating all these cards for Standard playability. I will mention Modern applications if I believe the card has some.

Each card will be listed by color, then alphabetically by name.

Each card will given a rating of 1-5. If a card would receive a 0, meaning it will see no play in that format ever, it's rating is left off the list.

RATING — Explanation — Standard Examples

0 — Will never see play in this format (0 ratings are not listed).

1 — Unlikely to see play. (Dubious Challenge)

2 — Could see fringe play, or occasional sideboard card. (Authority of the Consuls)

3 — Commonly played, staple in a single deck, or frequent play in several decks. (Harnessed Lightning, Cast Down)

4 — Format staples. Sees play in multiple decks, one of the best cards in the format. (Heart of Kiran, Abrade, Seal Away)

5 — Format warping. If you’re in these colors, you play that card. (Goblin Chainwhirler, Teferi, Hero of Dominaria)

On with the show!

1.5 — No matter how hard you wish, this card won't be good enough to see tier one play. It's a fun card though.
3 — Not as good as Reflector Mage obviously but Man-o'-War tends to see play now and again in Standard, I do wish it was a merfolk wizard so that it could help not only the wizard tribe but also the merfolk tribe.
2.5 — Blue nerd ape! Maybe we'll see some sort of tempo/aggro ur deck with Gearsmith Prodigy and Inventor's Apprentice.
2Metamorphic Alteration is no Phantasmal Image. It's so much work to clone a creature as a benefit. You could enchant your opponent’s The Scarab God to make it a copy of a weaker creature but even then I'm not convinced. A unqiue card for sure, I just don't see a home for it.
2.5 — This one is interesting. One less mana for a Clone but it's only stuff you control. Would be sweet with Sun Titan but we don't have that, however we do Tishar, so maybe some sort of uw Value Town deck. Cloning lords is nice if you're playing a tribal deck.
2.5 — The reason I have a Mistcaller is because I didn't know who it was when they called . . .  All righty then . . .  This card will see more play in older formats but being both a Merfolk and a Wizard is great for those tribes. This does stop an activation of Bone Dragon, Scrapheap Scrounger, and Liliana, Death's Majesty.
2.5 — I love me some Azure Mage, especially in the Sideboard of Blue decks to battle against slow midrange decks, attrition decks, and even control decks. I'm overly excited for Mystic Archaeologist.
3 — I could write an article just on Nexus of Fate alone, this is my favorite card "in" this set. It makes it near impossible to deck yourself and the later the game goes, the closer you get to actual infinite turns. Casting Nexus of Fate at your opponent's end step allows you to take two turns in a row. This means you can play Teferi, Hero of Dominaria onto a battlefield of four or more creatures. Then you can uptick him and follow it up with a Fumigate on your normal turn. Taking two turns in a row allows for some shenanigans and setting up some awesome stuff.
2.5 — Not an exciting card but it is serviceable, especially if Red is big. It can be a decent way to filter draws against aggressive strategies while also killing 2/1 or at the very least, stopping them from attacking.
2.5 — Another great card for Ali! Omniscience is a very fun card to play with, getting to 10 mana in Standard is the hard part, especially since the card doesn't have an immediate impact when it enters the battlefield. If Abrade wasn't around you could try to cheat it into play a couple turns earlier with a Planar Bridge but we can't run artifacts that cost that much with Abrade in the format. Regardless, I'll be brewing a couple of decks with this card.
2 — I'd rather play small artifacts and Reverse Engineer or just Glimmer of Genius. However, playing One with the Machine alongside Metalwork Colossus could be something sweet to do.
2 — You'll need a lot of patience to get this card working. Honestly, it's way too slow, especially since Bounty of the Luxa was too slow. I can maybe see it in the control mirror match as a Sideboard card, even then I'm not really sold.
3 — Snoop Dog's invitational card is finally here! I personally think it's pretty good, turning on Mox Ambers and letting you sacrifice extra Mox Ambers to draw cards. Every artifact you play making a 1/1 flier can get out of hand quickly, the only problem is Goblin Chainwhirler just kills them all. Hopefully Chainwhirler doesn't stop this card from seeing play.
2Mnemonic Wall has seen play in the past but we are in an environment that's pretty aggressive and we've come a long way from when Mnemonic Wall was seeing play. I'd rather just play Torrential Gearhulk and cast the card.
2.5Servo Schematic into a 5/5, eh? ehhh? That's not a bad play and neither is turning a 1/1 thopter into a 5/5 flier. I wouldn't be shocked if this card saw play, maybe in a ur or Mono-Blue artifact aggro/tempo deck with the nerd apes and Metallic Rebuke, other improvise cards, and Karn, Scion of Urza.
2.5 — Blue Fog is great against every aggressive deck except the most popular one, Mono-Red. Haste creatures like Earthshaker Khenra and Hazoret the Fervent don't care at all about sleep. Wish it was Evacuation instead.
2 — Better in Modern, I don't really see this one being played in Standard just yet. We'd need a lot more spirits to see that happen.
1.5 — This is the worse Horse in the cycle. It should just draw you the card if you're having to sink mana into it. Green decks are boarding in Carnage Tyrants against you and you're boarding in Surge Mare??? That's not going to work the way you want it to.
3 — Tezzeret has now infused the Planar Bridge into himself, time for some Phyrexian invasion? Tezzeret protects himself, draws cards, and has a game winning ultimate. I really like this card, it's not as good as Chandra but it's on par with something like Liliana, Death's Majesty. I'd probably play 3-4 Karns first before playing any Tezzeret but they do play well together if you're able to get both of them out.
1.5 — This card is awful, it won't see any play in Standard. Just play Chromium, Torrential Gearhulk, or Nezahal, Primal Tide.

Top 5 Blue Cards

  1. Tezzeret, Artifice Master
  2. Exclusion Mage
  3. Nexus of Fate
  4. Sai, Master Thopterist
  5. Mystic Archaeologist

The Blue cards here aren’t quite as good as the White ones this time around. After Nexus of Fate, the playability kind of tanks a little. I think Sai has a ton of potential, but that potential depends on how popular Goblin Chainwhirler is, so we’ll have to wait and see.

Well that’s it for today ladies and gentlemen. I’ll see you all tomorrow as we go over the Black cards in M19!

Until then,

Ali Aintrazi

Follow me @AliEldrazi

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Magic Core Set 2019 is available for Preorder!