Arcane Bombardment Art by Marta Nael

Streets of New Capenna Limited Set Review: Red

Our complete review of all the Streets of New Capenna cards, for limited (sealed and draft).

It’s every magic players favorite time, spoiler season. It’s like Christmas, but we get it multiple times a year! I get so hyped up for new sets and this one is going to be crazy with the first shard based set we’ve had in a long time. So lets jump right into see what’s going down on the mean Streets of New Capenna.


Antagonize

Rating: 2.0/5

This is a generic trick, but four damage is still an awful lot for two mana if you’re trying to get your opponent dead. Acceptable playable in aggressive strategies. If you want them, I’m sure they will be floating around late enough for you to get them.

Arcane Bombardment

Rating: 2.0/5

This is a giant meme, but if you manage to get it to go off, its going OFF! Optimally you would get to play this early off of Big Score and follow it up with Strangle. As long as you have plenty of other instants and sorceries in your deck, its going to be a wild ride. In most other cases this is going to be too slow. Most importantly of all, it does give you the ability to yell BOMBARDMENT while pelting spells at your opponent. Which brings me to the real question, are any of my readers old enough to get that reference?

Big Score

Rating: 2.5/5

Unexpected Windfall we hardly knew ye. It sure didn’t take long for them to print an improved version of it. While this is a much better card in constructed, it’s still a pretty solid limited card. Trading away this and an extra land for two cards while letting you really blow up the next turn is certainly nothing to sneeze at. Plus, you score more treasure than the Goonies.

Call In a Professional

Rating: 3.5/5

Have a problem with shields? Better call in a professional. It’s important to note that not only does it still remove the shield without preventing the damage, but also applies to anything you do for the rest of the turn. Even If your opponent doesn’t have shields or life gain, it’s still a respectable burn spell.

Daring Escape

Rating: 1.0/5

I dare them to stop printing variations of this card. Seriously it’s never good enough in limited and it’s a joke for constructed. It could be literally anything else and be better than this. The only thing this card has going for it is that it is so bad that no one plays around it, but even in that case Arena rats you out.

Devilish Valet

Rating: 2.5/5

The dream is to combine this with Rabble Rousing and smack your opponent in the face for approximately infinite. If you manage to get a bunch of token creators or ways to put multiple creatures in on the same turn, it can turn up the heat fast. In an average deck, this is going to really underperform and might not even make the cut.

Exhibition Magician

Rating: 2.5/5

I’m normally not looking to check out a show with this kind of numbers. However, versatility makes this an exhibition worth checking out. The ability to either ramp or go wide really lets you play to what you’ve drawn instead of rigidly sticking to one game plan.

Glittering Stockpile

Rating: 1.5/5

In a shard set it’s baffling that our Manalith variant both requires a colored source to cast and only produces red until you sacrifice it. Even if you stack this up, what are you planning on doing with this stockpile once you get it? Sit on it like Smaug?

Goldhound

Rating: 2.0/5

Under the correct circumstances this can be a very good boi. The menace makes this really up the value of Sticky Fingers and the first strike goes really well with equipment. On its own, its much less impressive. I keep hearing people say they are using it for ramp. Would you seriously pay a mana and a card to get an extra mana on a later turn? Rituals were never good in limited and putting it in your deck for that purpose is a big no no.

Hoard Hauler

Rating: 2.0/5

Crew three is a lot and normally I’d haul this straight to the trash. The trample at least makes me consider playing it, but the treasure creation being dependent on your opponent’s artifacts is a huge drawback.

Involuntary Employment

Rating: 2.0/5

The treasure makes this basically cost three which lets you start to pull off some serious chaos with casualty around turn five or six. If you have multiple cheap casualty cards this really goes up, but is borderline unplayable if you have no sacrifice outlets.

Jackhammer

Rating: 1.5/5

My wife told me we had a Bonesplitter at home…. There might be situations this could make the cut, but that means it’s one of those drafts that I’m praying for my opponent to mull to five every game.

Jaxis, the Troublemaker

Rating: 4.0/5

The ceiling of being a Kiki-Jiki, Mirror Breaker that lets you filter your extra lands into new cards is pretty bonkers. There are obviously drawbacks like the lack of haste on Jaxis when this has a HUGE target on it the moment it hits the battlefield. You’re also out a card if they kill the target in response, but that’s a price I’m willing to pay if they kill that instead of Jaxis.

Light ‘Em Up

Rating: 2.5/5

The Shock variant of the set is slightly disappointing. It feels like false advertisement being named this, when you can’t light up the face. It doesn’t appear to line up well against a lot of the better cards in the set, but removal is still removal.

Mayhem Patrol

Rating: 2.5/5

A 2/2 menace for two mana is a really aggressive card and this also gives you the opportunity to pump something else instead. Blitz also acts as pseudo cycling which is a great ability to have on something that you don’t want to draw late in the game.

Plasma Jockey

Rating: 2.0/5

If you’re playing a focused highly aggressive deck, then you can ride this jockey to help push through a ton of damage. If you’re playing a soup deck, then this should be left back in the stables.

Professional Face-Breaker

Rating: 4.0/5

I wonder what the qualifications to be a professional face-breaker are? Does the job interview require punching randoms in the face? Whatever they had to go through to get here, I just want them on my side of the field.

This triggers off of anything of yours hitting so you can drop it and swing away for that treasure on the same turn. It’s hard to block early so it will probably get you at least another treasure before you start using the card advantage to keep clearing the way. Wonderful card.

Pugnacious Pugilist

Rating: 2.5/5

This guy looks like he’s straight out of Mike Tyson’s Punch Out. The pugilist is a snowball card since you get a new pinger every time he attacks. It really puts your opponent in the position to have to deal with him or keep letting you stack value.

Pyre-Sledge Arsonist

Rating: 2.0/5

With enough treasures this guy can make the world burn. In some cases, he’s just a Gray Ogre. Look at your deck and try to figure out how often you can light things up with it before committing to drafting this guy.

Bonus: Works with sacrifice lands.

Ready to Rumble

Rating: 2.5/5

Let’s get ready to… Fiery Intervention. That was a decent, but unimpressive removal spell in Dominaria and this is the exact same thing with a new name so I expect comparable quality. Similar to other removal, I bumped it down about half a grade because shield is a thing.

Riveteers Initiate

Rating: 2.0/5

A curve filling bear with the upside of being able to trade up later as long as you have black or green mana. Nothing much more to say here.

Riveteers Requisitioner

Rating: 3.0/5

I’m a big fan of this guy as he puts your opponent in a bad spot early deciding between taking damage or letting you ramp. If you draw him later, you can just cycle him away. Good early, still useful late is a combination I’m always down for.

Sizzling Soloist

Rating: 2.0/5

At least Towashi Songshaper has a sweet jazz musician for his band. It’s called Weaponizing The Falsetto, but I think they just go by their initials. Stats wise this is awful, but if it survives it should be able to help your team crack in for some decent damage. I don’t think the second trigger is going to be nearly as relevant as the first.

Sticky Fingers

Rating: 2.5/5

This is the Goldvein Pick of the set, except everyone knows about it before hand so instead of being underrated, it’s going to be severely overrated. There is going to be some tension with this because you want cheap creatures to get this going, but also want something big to pay off all that extra mana.

Strangle

Rating: 3.0/5

This is not Lightning Bolt. It’s a pretty good removal spell that can’t get through shields or scale up to hit bigger creatures. Sorcery speed means that you’re never going to catch someone in a blowout. You should obviously draft this card, but it’s not an easy pick one like I’ve seen people touting it as.

Structural Assault

Rating: 1.5/5

Do you make a ton of treasures? If not, don’t draft this card. Even if you do, you’re going to need three or four treasures out to make this worth popping off and that means you used some amount of value to get there. If you do choose to go down this route, try to go for a turn where you pop all your treasures first to do this, then follow it up with some creatures.

Torch Breath

Rating: 3.0/5

Reasonably costed, versatile damage-based removal. Yep, usually going to happily play those. Nothing to write home about, but always going to make the cut. The best part of this card is the Fried Squid flavor text.

Unlucky Witness

Rating: 2.5/5

Poor guy should have minded his own business, but at least his sacrifice won’t be in vain. And by his sacrifice, I mean me sacrificing him to a random casualty card. One of the better sacrifice fodder cards of the set, it also makes attacking and blocking extremely awkward for you opponent as they will rarely want to let you get an extra card out of this.

Urabrask, Heretic Praetor

Rating: 4.0/5

It might seem selfish, but I always love some personal Howling Mine action. I’ll keep all the extra cards for myself, thank you very much. Having it tacked onto a reasonably costed creature with haste can just be game breaking in any kind of fair fight.

The opponent exile ability is more for constructed purposes, but hey you might get to shut down their counterspells. The only reason this isn’t higher is because it “dies to Doom Blade” without getting any value.

Widespread Thieving

Rating: 1.0/5

They say crime doesn’t pay and apparently that’s correct with Widespread Thieving being pretty awful. Three mana to hideaway a card that you can only play for WUBRG on the same turn that you already played a multicolor spell. Even in a deck full of multicolor cards that needs a way to make treasures, I’m sure you can do better than this.

Witty Roastmaster

Rating: 2.0/5

Witty Roastmaster sounds like a good way to describe me during a Draft Lab meeting. This is a good way to win a game after you’ve stalled out and really goes up if you have multiple token makers.

Wrecking Crew

Rating: 2.0/5

I guess he has reach because he can whack birds out of the sky with his wrecking ball. Big enough body that trample is relevant especially if you are rocking Antagonize. Decent top end if that’s what you are trying to do.


Wrap Up

Red has a lot of quality commons and can actually build an aggressive deck that can take all of the value decks by surprise. Due to the color distribution, it’ll be almost impossible to pull off a mono-colored deck like you could in NEO, but you should be able to stay low to the ground in some two-color combination of Naya colors.

I would prioritize the removal spells over most of the non-bomb creatures since they are more likely to be picked up to be splashed by soup decks.

If you have any questions, let me know in the comments below.

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j2sjosh

Josh is a member of the elite limited team The Draft Lab as well as the host of The Draft Lab Podcast. He was qualifying for Pro Tours, Nationals, and Worlds literally before some of you were born. After a Magic hiatus to play poker and go to medical school, he has been dominating Arena with over an 80% win percentage in Bo3 as well as making #1 rank in Mythic.

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