MtG Core Set 2021, just like many other core sets, offers a variety of reprints from Magic: The Gathering's vast pool of cards. In this limited season, you will see plenty of familiar cards — unless you are a completely new player.
With that said, there are some important new cards in almost every color. Though, it looks as if aggro strategies will take over this format, meaning that red and white decks will dominate the format. Games will be fast and intense.
This selection of best limited cards from Core Set 2021 looks at both reprints and new cards that will surely make your draft and sealed decks better.
Deathbloom Thallid is a reprint from Dominaria, which performed well in the Golgari deck during Dominaria's limited season. Now, since there isn't much support for saprolings, Deathbloom Thallid will be mainly played in Rakdos Sacrifice shell because of its ability to produce a token after it dies.
Deathbloom Thallid is a good aggressive card that can sacrifice either itself or a token for Direfleet Warmonger, Obsessive Stitcher, or Twinblade Assassins.
Llanowar Visionary is a mashup of Llanowar Elves and Elvish Visionary in both the name and effect.
Although 3 mana may be a little too steep for a mana producer, its ability to draw a card when it enters the battlefield balances things out. All green decks will want this card.
Many MtG players have already proclaimed this to be the best common card for limited, so don't sleep on it.
Colorless cards with a solid effect have always been highly regarded by limited players because of their inclusiveness in all types of decks.
Skyscanner, a reprint from Core Set 2019, is a diamond in the rough for all limited decks. It replaces itself by drawing a card and blocks any big creature with flying.
It was a favorite of many players during the Core Set 2019 season, and it will surely perform in Core Set 2021 as well.
Core Set 2021 is heavy on solid reprints, and Spellgorger Weird is another one from the War of the Spark set.
This card was a favorite of many Izzet Spells players because it only took a few turns to push Spellgorger Weird to impressive sizes.
There is a good amount of support for this archetype this season as well, so expect to see players using it to achieve amazing results. Though, preferably, you'll want to be that player.
Roaming Ghostlight is a brand-new card that you will want to hoard; draft as many copies as you possibly can.
It's very similar in effect to Chillbringer from Ravnica Allegiance, which was a real powerhouse in that limited season.
Play Roaming Ghostlight and bounce the biggest creature on the opponent's side of the table, forcing them to replay it again during the next turn. They will spend all their mana while you attack in the air. It's a simple strategy that has won many limited games in the past.
Out of all draft signposts in Core Set 2021, Conclave Mentor is one of the best because of its ability to increase the number of +1/+1 counters.
Aggro archetypes are (mostly) very successful in limited formats, and this card enables the Lifegain archetype to be even more powerful than it already is.
Additionally, the introduction of Lifegain taplands in Core Set 2021 also works in this deck type's favor.
Burn is now possible in limited!
Heartfire Immolator is no Monastery Swiftspear, of course, but it has Prowess and an extra ability that can finish off a creature or a planeswalker.
This will also work great in Izzet Spells deck alongside Spellgorger Weird and a bevy of removal spells. But in general, Heartfire Immolator is a solid 2-drop, which would find a home in any red deck.
If you see it in your first pack, don't hesitate to pick it up — unless there is a bomb rare right next to it.
Most MtG players would never play Duress in their limited games, but almost every player would surely pick up Kitesail Freebooter, which is basically Duress on a stick.
With it, you can remove the best spell from your opponent's hand, forcing them to spend a removal spell to break it. If they don't, you can keep pinging them for 1 damage each turn in the air.
Artifacts and enchantments appear in almost every limited deck. Although Thrashing Brontodon has an excellent body for just 3 mana, you wouldn't hesitate to sacrifice it to remove one of those threat types.
Thrashing Brontodon has been reprinted many times in recent years, so players have already become accustomed to the card's power level. This trend will only continue with Core Set 2021, and all green decks will surely include multiple copies of it.
Experimental Overload is the standard bearer for all blue-red decks in Core Set 2021 limited. To make the most of this card, put at least four instant or sorcery cards in your graveyard before playing it — because you can return any of those spells to your hand.
Imagine that you have two copies of Experimental Overload in your deck. You can put one in your graveyard and return it with the help of a second copy. Rinse and repeat for unlimited tokens.
Paying 5 mana for a 4/3 flyer is a deal made in limited heaven. On top of that, you gain at least 2 points of life when it enters the battlefield. So what's not to like?
Obviously, Aven Gagglemaster is not a bomb, but this cool bird can win the late-game by attacking through the air and keeping you alive.
Once again, this is a great card for Lifegain decks, though practically every white deck, including Azorius Control, will want at least one copy.
Tolarian Kraken, a repeatable tap effect that is guaranteed at each draw step, is incredibly powerful in limited.
For that reason, Tolarian Kraken is a terrific limited card, which synergizes with Enthralling Hold, Leafkin Avenger, Teferi's Protege, and Obsessive Stitcher.
Control players will want to draft this card, making it a definitive "pack one pick one" card for Azorius Control decks.
Gadrak, the Crown-Scourge
Although Gadrak (most likely) won't be able to attack for the first few turns on the field, it will be able to block lots of incoming attacks.
However, once you accumulate enough artifacts on board, you can start hitting your opponent for 5 damage each turn.
The best way to support Gadrak is to draft cards like Short Sword, Silent Dart, and Witch's Cauldron, so you can quickly activate its attack ability.
This card is clearly made for offense, and you will want to activate its draw ability each and every turn.
If you happen to deal combat damage, then you can look at the top four cards of your library and put a creature card in your hand. And, if you draft a Garruk planeswalker, then you can draw him as well.
Being hexproof from black is also very good, especially against Grasp of Darkness and Finishing Blow removal spells.
Rarely do we get a super solid spell for limited formats, but Sublime Epiphany is absolutely devastating.
You will most likely never need the card's second option, which counters triggered or activated abilities, but everything else is practically a win condition in draft and sealed.
Your opponents lose so much and you gain as much when you cast Sublime Epiphany. So beware of all the control decks with blue, as they will surely have Sublime Epiphany in their main decks.
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- 15 Best Ikoria Lair of Behemoths Cards for Standard
In addition to this list of the best Core Set 2021 cards for MtG limited, be sure to check out the links above or our many other Magic the Gathering guides and lists here.