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Alchemy and Historic Rebalanced Cards – October 6, 2022

With the release of Alchemy: Dominaria on October 6, 2022, which adds 30 new cards to Alchemy and Historic, there will be some card rebalances also to come along with it:

  • 5 Historic cards will be reverted to their original tabletop versions after they were rotated from Standard.
  • 43 cards will be rebalanced specifically for Streets of New Capenna limited, which will be featured as Planeshifted Draft event from October 13 to 21.
  • No other cards are rebalanced for constructed formats, as Wizards of the Coast seeks to avoid nerfs unless absolutely necessary. This explains why powerful commons in SNC are not touched such as Jewel Thief or Inspiring Overseer.

Below is the full list of card changes as well as their reasons for the change from the MTG Arena developers.

Historic Card Rebalancing

As part of the Alchemy: Dominaria game update, the original tabletop versions of these cards will be returned to Historic. Notably, Wizards played it safe and kept A-Alrund's Epiphany the way it is balanced now – extra turn cards are becoming a nuisance these days!

Alright, let’s start off with answering some questions that we know you’re going to ask.

First, why we’re reverting these changes: When we look to rebalance cards, our standard is . . . err, Standard. During our consideration for whether a card or a deck archetype needs adjustment, much of our information comes from Standard play, as that is our most popular format, and we rebalance with the current Standard and, through extension, Alchemy meta in mind.

Now that these cards have rotated out of Alchemy, we go from having them legal in two formats to one and can balance around that. While many of these cards were powerful to the point of banning in Standard, Historic has a larger card pool and therefore more ways to interact or respond to powerful cards. As such, some of these rebalances were no longer necessary to maintain a healthy meta.

It’s important to note that this reversion is not comprehensive; not every card that was rebalanced to lower its power level is being reverted to the original version now that it’s only playable in Historic (looking at you, Alrund’s Epiphany). Similarly, while it’s unlikely we’ll “unbuff” cards that received balance adjustments to improve playability (and currently have no plans to do so), only a certain type of dark-empowered entity deals in absolutes, and we’re not them. As we said earlier, once a rebalanced card is only playable in Historic, we can balance solely around that.

Next, why we’re reverting these changes now: Ideally, reversion of balance adjustments due to format legality would happen at the same time as the format legality of these cards changes—i.e., rotation. Time constraints combined with necessary technical work prevented us from making the deadline for the release of Dominaria United, however, players should expect any similar “unrebalancing” of cards to happen alongside each year’s Standard rotation.

Lastly, as with all other rebalances, players will not be receiving wildcard reimbursement for these changes.

MTG Arena: State of the Game – Alchemy: Dominaria

Standard Card Rebalancing

After reviewing the Streets of New Capenna Limited data collected over the past few months, we found three issues with the format that we want to address and solve:

Encourage Three-Color Decks

We feel that there is not enough incentive to draft the three-color families over the more streamlined ally two-color decks. We are addressing this by reducing the cost of the three-color common “mana-fixing” creatures like Ominous Parcel, while increasing the rate of some of the three-color payoffs like Mr. Orfeo, the Boulder; Queza, Auguar of Agonies; and Cabaretti Charm.

Slow Down the Pace of Games

We want to make removal and blocking more successful against shield counters, blitz, and aggressive decks. Incriminate being more cost effective, Psionic Snoop and Midnight Assassin being better blockers, and Deal Gone Bad gaining life should help players catch up when behind and interact more successfully with creatures with shield counters.

Make More Cards Viable Draft Picks

We want to increase the strength of some of the cards that haven’t been seeing play. We believe that this will make drafting and deck building more interesting while increasing the likelihood that you’re able to draft enough playable cards while also prioritizing fixing.

Speakeasy Server
Changed “you gain 1 life for each other creature you control” to “you gain 1 life for each creature you control.”

Speakeasy Server

Celebrity Fencer
Now 3/3 (from 3/2)

Celebrity Fencer

Buy Your Silence
Card type now instant (from sorcery)

Buy Your Silence

Sewer Crocodile
Now 4/7 (from 4/6)

Sewer Crocodile

Psionic Snoop
Now 0/4 (from 0/3)

Psionic Snoop

Public Enemy
Changed “When enchanted creature dies, draw a card” to “When enchanted creature dies, draw two cards.”

Public Enemy

Case the Joint

  • Costs 4U (from 3U)
  • Card type now sorcery (from instant)
  • Changed “Draw two cards” to “Draw three cards”
Case the Joint

Demon's Due
Redesigned to look at four cards and pick two: “Look at the top four cards of your library. Put two of them into your hand and the rest into your graveyard. You lose 2 life.”

Demon's Due

Vampire Scrivener
Costs 3B (from 4B)

Vampire Scrivener

Midnight Assassin
Now 1/3 (from 1/2)

Midnight Assassin

Graveyard Shift
Creature enters the battlefield with an additional +1/+1 counter on it.

Graveyard Shift

Incriminate
Costs B (from 1B)

Incriminate

Deal Gone Bad
Add “You gain 3 life.”

Deal Gone Bad

Revel Ruiner
Now 3/2 (from 3/1)

Revel Ruiner

Exhibition Magician
Now 2/2 (from 2/1)

Exhibition Magician

Jackhammer
Costs R (from 1R)

Jackhammer

Ready to Rumble

  • Card type now instant (from sorcery)
  • Add “Damage can’t be prevented this turn.”
Ready to Rumble

Sizzling Soloist
Now 4/2 (from 3/2)

Sizzling Soloist

Pyre-Sledge Arsonist
Now 2/3 (from 2/3)

Pyre-Sledge Arsonist

Warm Welcome

  • Costs 3G (from 2G)
  • Card type now sorcery (from instant)
  • Changed “Create a 1/1 green and white Citizen creature token” to “Create two 1/1 green and white Citizen creature tokens.”
Warm Welcome

Most Wanted
Changed “Enchanted creature gets +2/+1” to “Enchanted creature gets +2/+2.”

Most Wanted

Social Climber
Now 4/2 (from 3/2)

Social Climber

Capenna Express
Now 7/7 (from 6/6)

Capenna Express

High-Rise Sawjack

  • Now 1/4 (from 2/3)
  • Changed “High-Rise Sawjack gets +2/+0 until end of turn” to “High-Rise Sawjack gets +3/+0 until end of turn.”
High-Rise Sawjack

Glittermonger
Now 2/4 (from 1/4)

Glittermonger

Paragon of Modernity
Now 2/3 (from 2/2)

Paragon of Modernity

Ominous Parcel
First activated ability cost now 1, T (from 2, T)

Ominous Parcel

Glamorous Outlaw

  • Add “you gain 2 life”
  • Activated ability cost now 2 (from 1)
Glamorous Outlaw

Masked Bandits

  • Now 5/6 (from 5/5)
  • Activated ability cost now 1 (from 2)
Masked Bandits

Rakish Revelers
Activated ability cost now 1 (from 2)

Rakish Revelers

Shattered Seraph

  • Now 4/5 (from 4/4)
  • Activated ability cost now 1 (from 2)
Shattered Seraph

Spara's Adjudicators
Activated ability cost now 1 (from 2)

Spara's Adjudicators

Stimulus Package
Add “Scry 1” to second activated ability

Stimulus Package

Cabaretti Charm
Changed “deals damage equal to the number of creatures you control” to “deals damage equal to twice the number of creatures you control”

Cabaretti Charm

Riveteers Initiate
Activated ability cost now H (from 1H)

Riveteers Initiate

Security Rhox
Now 5/5 (from 5/4)

Security Rhox

Mr. Orfeo, the Boulder
Now 3/4 (from 2/4)

Mr. Orfeo, the Boulder

Forge Boss
Now 4/4 (from 3/4)

Forge Boss

Syndicate Infiltrator
Gains ward 2

Syndicate Infiltrator

Queza, Augur of Agonies
Gains vigilance

Queza, Augur of Agonies

Additional Changes

Celestial Regulator
Now 1/4 (from 2/3)

Celestial Regulator

Civil Servant
Changed “Civil Servant gets +1/+0 and gains lifelink until end of turn” to “Civil Servant gets +1/+0 and gains trample until end of turn.”

Civil Servant

Metropolis Angel

  • Costs 3WU (from 2WU)
  • Now 3/3 (from 3/1)
Metropolis Angel

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