Last updated on May 19, 2021

Article prepared by David Royale

Strixhaven colleges graphics

Source

Welcome to the school of mages! No, this is not a Harry Potter book, but the warmest welcome Wizards of The Coast is giving to you and all players around the world for its new set: Strixhaven.

Today we’ll be going over the full set and review what it has to offer for both novice and experienced magicians! By the way, this set is going to be Standard-legal. Woo!

Prepare your notebooks, as the class is starting now.

Basic Information

Important Dates

About the Set

Wizards has an imperative to switch up the feel of their sets to keep things interesting for us players. This time, we’re headed to a set that centers around the magical school genre and is based on the premise that you can choose from one of the five colleges. These colleges consist of the enemy color pairs, with their characters and mechanics at the heart of what they stand for.

The Story

The most elite university in the multiverse on the plane of Arcavios has five colleges, each founded 700 years ago by an elder dragon whose name they bear. They use their magic and knowledge to share their vision with their students so that they can follow along the same magical paths as their founders.

Students get to choose what type of mage they want to pursue and which college to join after their first year of studies. What can you do at this prestigious school? Go to the Biblioplex to study every single spell in the universe! Inside, you’ll find the Mystical Archive with the most powerful spells ever from Magic’s history, more on that later. You can also participate in college activities, with each boasting its own respective campus, mascot, faculty, and logos.

And maybe the most fun activity of all: you could compete in a game of Mage Tower with your fellow students!

Meet the Founders

Remember I mentioned that each college has its mentor’s name? Well, prepare to meet them with us:

These powerful dragons are already making their first steps in Standard. While the format has shaken a little with their arrival, be sure to get them as soon as possible to not fall behind on the brewing party!

The Five Colleges

Each college has its cool own motto along with its preview Command card. We’ll go over each one of them right now!

Boros: Lorehold

Lorehold banner

“Leave no stone unturned.”

Boros’ college is based on entering and leaving the graveyard synergies. What I mean by that is this color pair gives you value from creatures like Tome Shredder, who can abuse spells from the graveyard, and Quintorius, Field Historian, who gets you a full army when creature cards are exiled. Each college has a command card, and for this one, its Lorehold Command.

Lorehold Command

I like this one because it reminds me of Boros Charm mixed with Lightning Helix. It also offers cool other parts such as creating a creature and card advantage.

Izzet: Prismari

Prismari banner

“Express yourself with the elements.”

Prismari’s college is all about combat tricks and copying spells, It’s command spell, Prismari Command, is a great cheap instant that can ramp you to five on turn 3 while killing your opponent’s creatures.

Prismari Command

Its most iconic cards are Rootha, Mercurial Artist and Teach by Example. Both can copy your removal or card draw to give you an epic advantage over your opponent.

Simic: Quandrix

Quandrix banner

“Math is Magic.”

Quandrix Command is the perfect example of what this color pair is trying to do. It’s all about counters and shenanigans.

Quandrix Command

This Simic college has a ramp subtheme with cards like Eureka Momment and Quandrix Cultivator, plus some payoffs for doing so in Scurrid Colony and Vortex Runner. Having said that, I think WotC learned its lesson with busted Simic cards (yes I’m looking at you, Uro, Titan of Nature’s Wrath and Oko, Thief of Crowns!).

Orzhov: Silverquill

Silverquill banner

“Sharp style. Sharper wit.”

This color pair was troublesome to pinpoint at the beginning but, given how it’s been played, it’s the aggro pair from the set. Orzhov’s college has some strong removal and ways to pump your creatures to do lots of damage to your opponents. Their command card reflects that pretty well:

Silverquill Command

This card is perfect as it can remove one of your opponent’s creatures and also either pump one of yours or return it from the graveyard to the battlefield.

Golgari: Witherbloom

Witherbloom banner

“Get your hands dirty.”

Get ready to learn how to gain life and benefit from it. Golgari’s college has a theme of benefiting from those in cards like Witherbloom Pledgemage, plus enablers like Overgrown Arch.

Witherbloom Command

There’s also a subtheme of sacrificing creatures and getting value from those, as shown in Bayou Groff and Daemogoth Woe-Eater.

Set Mechanics

Magecraft

Magecraft is a triggered ability that says, “Whenever you cast or copy an instant or sorcery spell (do something).” This could be gaining life, putting counters on things, drawing cards, anything. This points to you being heavily incentivized to draft and play instants and sorceries in Limited to get these bonuses.

Learn / Lesson

What is a magical school without spells that you can learn? Learn is an ability that certain cards have that allows you to either go get a “lesson card” from outside the game (i.e., your sideboard) or rummage (discard a card, then draw a card).

You can, of course, put these lesson cards in your main deck, but they seem to be pretty underpowered and better suited for your sideboard so you can only draw them in the right situations.

It’s a little difficult to see lesson cards when they’re in your sideboard in MTG Arena, but we’ve got you covered.

Ward

Ward is pretty straightforward mechanic. It reads, “Whenever this creature becomes the target of a spell or ability an opponent controls, counter it unless that player pays .”

That cost can in the form of other resources, for example Owlin Shieldmate requiring a payment of three life.

Ward is the next in a long line of “creature resilience” mechanics that have often been problematic throughout Magic’s history. Protection, hexproof, shroud, and regeneration have all led to some pretty unfun situations, so here’s hoping this one strikes the right balance.

Return of MDFCs

As promised when they premiered in Zendikar Rising, modal double-faced cards keep showing up in new ways in subsequent releases. As a refresher, you can choose either side of an MDFC when playing it. It stays on that side until it leaves play, in which case it always counts as the front side of the card.

In Strixhaven, we’ve got the five deans of each college represented as MDFCs, as well as a planeswalker. Here are just a couple of the pairs:

Official Spoilers

White

Blue

Black

Red

Green

Multicolored

Colorless

Artifact

Lands

Modal Double-Faced Cards

Mystical Archive

White

Blue

Black

Red

Green

Multicolored

Fun Facts

Commander 2021 Strixhaven

You’ll notice a difference in packaging with the new Commander products. Only the wrapping around the cards themselves will be plastic, which is great news for nature!

Magic The Gathering Strixhaven Commander Deck – Prismari Performance (Blue-Red)
Magic The Gathering Strixhaven Commander Deck – Silverquill Statement (Black-White)
Magic The Gathering Strixhaven Commander Deck – Lorehold Legacies (Red-White)
Magic The Gathering Strixhaven Commander Deck – Quantum Quandrix (Blue-Green)
Magic The Gathering Strixhaven Commander Deck – Witherbloom Witchcraft (Black-Green)
Magic The Gathering Strixhaven Commander Deck – Prismari Performance (Blue-Red)
Magic The Gathering Strixhaven Commander Deck – Silverquill Statement (Black-White)
Magic The Gathering Strixhaven Commander Deck – Lorehold Legacies (Red-White)
Magic The Gathering Strixhaven Commander Deck – Quantum Quandrix (Blue-Green)
Magic The Gathering Strixhaven Commander Deck – Witherbloom Witchcraft (Black-Green)
$26.77
$29.97
$32.45
$28.96
$29.69
Magic The Gathering Strixhaven Commander Deck – Prismari Performance (Blue-Red)
Magic The Gathering Strixhaven Commander Deck – Prismari Performance (Blue-Red)
$26.77
Magic The Gathering Strixhaven Commander Deck – Silverquill Statement (Black-White)
Magic The Gathering Strixhaven Commander Deck – Silverquill Statement (Black-White)
$29.97
Magic The Gathering Strixhaven Commander Deck – Lorehold Legacies (Red-White)
Magic The Gathering Strixhaven Commander Deck – Lorehold Legacies (Red-White)
$32.45
Magic The Gathering Strixhaven Commander Deck – Quantum Quandrix (Blue-Green)
Magic The Gathering Strixhaven Commander Deck – Quantum Quandrix (Blue-Green)
$28.96
Magic The Gathering Strixhaven Commander Deck – Witherbloom Witchcraft (Black-Green)
Magic The Gathering Strixhaven Commander Deck – Witherbloom Witchcraft (Black-Green)
$29.69

We also have a full review of the Strixhaven 2021 Commander decks, so be sure to see which one we think is the best value!

Mystical Archive

Boy, these spells are mystic! There’s a new series of spells with brand new art and borders that came with Strixhaven. You get one card, in a dedicated slot, in each draft booster and set booster. And you get at least three in each collector booster. Overall, we get 63 cards with a similar power level to the ones below.

Here’s were the very first spoilers for this special archive:

These are all very powerful cards that are also going to exist in foil.

Because of their power level, they aren’t legal in either Standard or Historic, but they are available in draft boosters, so if you happen to draft any of these iconic spells, cast away!

We’ll also be getting some cool Japanese variants, which will be found in Japanese draft, set, and collector boosters, and at least one will come in collector boosters in all languages. Take a look:

Wording Changes

We’re going to get a couple of wording changes for clarity and conciseness’s sake.

“Shuffle your library” will be shortened to just “shuffle.” A better wording that uses less text space while getting the same message across. An improvement.

“Mana value” is going to be replacing “converted mana cost.” This is pretty self-explanatory since “mana value” is the amount of mana it takes to cast a card. This one has been met with a little… skepticism from long-time Magic players.

Available Products

The sealed product offerings for Strixhaven are fairly standard. Let’s take a look at what you can expect if you go shopping for some School of Mages products.

Draft Boosters

Strixhaven draft booster packs

Draft boosters have the typical 15 card composition with one rare/mythic, three uncommons, ten commons, one land, and a token. Don’t forget that this time around you also get a guaranteed alternate-art mystical archive card.

Draft boosters are perfect for getting a bunch of Standard-legal cards or doing a draft with your friends!

Sale
Magic The Gathering Strixhaven Draft Booster Box | 36 Packs (540 Magic Cards)
  • 36 Strixhaven (STX) Magic: The Gathering Draft Boosters
  • 1 Mystical Archive card in every pack
  • 1 Lesson card in every pack
  • Total of 15 MTG cards in each Draft Booster
  • Just add lands and draft with up to 12 players

Set Boosters

Strixhaven Set Booster Box

Set booster boxes are all about the experience of opening a pack of cards and discovering what’s inside. They’re just just plain fun to crack. They usually have:

  • 30 packs in one box
  • A box topper with a premium rare card
  • A foil in every pack
  • Special art cards with beautiful new art from the set
  • Unique, special release cards not found in the normal set
Magic The Gathering Strixhaven Set Booster Box | 30 Packs (360 Magic Cards)
  • 30 Strixhaven (STX) Set Boosters
  • Best MTG booster for opening packs just to see what you’ll get
  • 1 Mystical Archive card in every pack
  • 1 Lesson card in every pack
  • 1–5 Assorted Rares or Mythic Rares per pack

If you prefer the sweet looking Japanese version, they’re surprisingly almost the same price!

Sale
Magic The Gathering Strixhaven Japanese Set Booster Box | 30 Packs (360 Magic Cards)
  • 30 Japanese Strixhaven (STX) Set Booster Packs
  • Best MTG booster for opening packs just to see what you’ll get
  • 1 Mystical Archive card in every pack—card is Japanese Alt-Art in 50% of packs
  • 1 Lesson card in every pack
  • 1–5 Assorted Rares or Mythic Rares per pack

Theme Boosters

Strixhaven theme boosters

Theme boosters give you a little more direction while you’re trying to collect a theme without going the limited-play route. They revolve around one particular color or theme (in this case, the five colleges) and have exclusive cards that are unique to each theme.

These packs contain:

  • 33 to 34 commons and uncommons
  • 1 or 2 rares
  • And, if you’re lucky, you’ll get some uncommon showcase cards
Sale
MTG Magic Strixhaven Theme Booster Display Box – 10 (35-Card) Booster Packs
  • Welcome to Strixhaven: School of Mages! In this latest release, Magic fans join the battle between five different colleges at Strixhaven, the most prestigious university for magical learning in the Magic Multiverse.Each college has its own unique personality and playstyle, and players can choose whichever college they prefer.
  • Silverquill (WB), Prismari (UR), Witherbloom (BG), Lorehold (WR), and Quandrix (UG). Learn from the best professors and explore Strixhaven’s huge library.
  • The design of this set is Magic’s take on the magical school genre. Each one of the featured colleges represents one of Magic’s enemy color combinations, with their own character and mechanics. Cards associated with the different colleges feature separate watermarked insignias.
  • This listing is for 2 sets of all 5 themes(10 in total)2 Silverquill Theme boosters (WB)2 Prismari Theme boosters (UR)2 Witherbloom Theme boosters (BG)2 Lorehold Theme boosters (WR)2 Quandrix Theme boosters (UG)
  • Release Date: April 23, 2021

Collector Boosters

Strixhaven Collector Booster Box

Collector boosters are perfect if you love premium, high-end versions of cards. Bling to the max. These typically include:

  • 12 packs with 15 high-end cards in each
  • A couple of premium box-toppers
  • Around 48 rares, 132 foils, and 72 alternate art cards
  • Unique card styles that aren’t found anywhere else
STX collector booster contents

Source

Magic The Gathering Strixhaven Collector Booster Box | 12 Packs (180 Magic Cards)
  • 12 Strixhaven (STX) Magic: The Gathering Collector Boosters
  • Shortcut to the coolest cards in Strixhaven
  • Only Strixhaven boosters with Foil Etched cards and Extended-Art
  • 1 Foil Etched Japanese Alt-Art Mystical Archive card in every pack + up to 2 additional JP Alt-Art Traditional Foils
  • Total of 3–4 Mystical Archive cards in a pack—2 Foil Etched in every pack

If an entire box of these bad boys is too expensive for you, you can treat yourself to a single pack at a more affordable price point:

Sale
Magic The Gathering Strixhaven Collector Booster Pack | 15 Magic Cards
  • 15 Strixhaven (STX) Magic: The Gathering Cards + 1 foil token
  • Shortcut to the coolest cards in Strixhaven
  • Only Strixhaven boosters with Foil Etched cards and Extended-Art
  • 1 Foil Etched Japanese Alt-Art Mystical Archive card in every pack + up to 2 additional JP Alt-Art Traditional Foils
  • Total of 3–4 Mystical Archive cards in a pack—2 Foil Etched in every pack

Bundles

Strixhaven bundle

The Strixhaven bundle is a great way to get an infusion of new cards and immerse yourself in the new world. Bundles typically come with:

  • 10 draft boosters
  • Lands (Zendikar Rising bundles came with 20 foil and 20 non-foil lands)
  • 1 alternate art promo card
  • An oversized spindown life counter
  • Reference cards

That’s almost 200 cards in a nice, collectible bundle. Pretty sweet deal if you ask me.

Magic The Gathering Strixhaven Bundle | 10 Draft Boosters (150 Magic Cards) + Accessories
  • 10 Strixhaven (STX) Magic: The Gathering Draft Booster packs
  • Exclusive foil alt-art promo card—Archmage Emeritus
  • 40 basic lands (20 foil & 20 nonfoil)
  • Spindown life counter and MTG card storage box
  • Choose your college at the most prestigious university for magical learning in Magic’s Multiverse

Strixhaven Commander (2021 Edition)

Strixhaven Commander 2021 Five Decks
Magic The Gathering Strixhaven Commander Deck – Prismari Performance (Blue-Red)
Magic The Gathering Strixhaven Commander Deck – Silverquill Statement (Black-White)
Magic The Gathering Strixhaven Commander Deck – Lorehold Legacies (Red-White)
Magic The Gathering Strixhaven Commander Deck – Quantum Quandrix (Blue-Green)
Magic The Gathering Strixhaven Commander Deck – Witherbloom Witchcraft (Black-Green)
Magic The Gathering Strixhaven Commander Deck – Prismari Performance (Blue-Red)
Magic The Gathering Strixhaven Commander Deck – Silverquill Statement (Black-White)
Magic The Gathering Strixhaven Commander Deck – Lorehold Legacies (Red-White)
Magic The Gathering Strixhaven Commander Deck – Quantum Quandrix (Blue-Green)
Magic The Gathering Strixhaven Commander Deck – Witherbloom Witchcraft (Black-Green)
$26.77
$29.97
$32.45
$28.96
$29.69
Magic The Gathering Strixhaven Commander Deck – Prismari Performance (Blue-Red)
Magic The Gathering Strixhaven Commander Deck – Prismari Performance (Blue-Red)
$26.77
Magic The Gathering Strixhaven Commander Deck – Silverquill Statement (Black-White)
Magic The Gathering Strixhaven Commander Deck – Silverquill Statement (Black-White)
$29.97
Magic The Gathering Strixhaven Commander Deck – Lorehold Legacies (Red-White)
Magic The Gathering Strixhaven Commander Deck – Lorehold Legacies (Red-White)
$32.45
Magic The Gathering Strixhaven Commander Deck – Quantum Quandrix (Blue-Green)
Magic The Gathering Strixhaven Commander Deck – Quantum Quandrix (Blue-Green)
$28.96
Magic The Gathering Strixhaven Commander Deck – Witherbloom Witchcraft (Black-Green)
Magic The Gathering Strixhaven Commander Deck – Witherbloom Witchcraft (Black-Green)
$29.69

The new Commander products will feature 81 new cards and the decks will follow in the college’s footsteps, mirroring the colors and themes of each college. There will be five decks:

  • Silverquill Statement
  • Prismari Performance
  • Witherbloom Withcraft
  • Lorehold Legacies
  • Quantum Quandrix
Sale
MTG Magic Strixhaven 2021 Commander Decks – Set of All 5
  • Welcome to Strixhaven: School of Mages! In this latest release, Magic fans join the battle between five different colleges at Strixhaven, the most prestigious university for magical learning in the Magic Multiverse.Each college has its own unique personality and playstyle, and players can choose whichever college they prefer.
  • Silverquill (WB), Prismari (UR), Witherbloom (BG), Lorehold (WR), and Quandrix (UG). Learn from the best professors and explore Strixhaven’s huge library.
  • The design of this set is Magic’s take on the magical school genre. Each one of the featured colleges represents one of Magic’s enemy color combinations, with their own character and mechanics. Cards associated with the different colleges feature separate watermarked insignias.
  • The decks names are-Silverquill Statement (WB)Prismari Performance (UR)Witherbloom Witchcraft (BG)Lorehold Legacies (RW)Quantum Quandrix (GU)Each deck contains:100 card deck1 Premium Commander10 Double-sided tokens1 life wheel1 deck box
  • Release Date: April 23, 2021

Where to Buy

There are a lot of options to get Magic products these days, including digital content. If you can, I encourage you to support your local store any way possible. Otherwise, you can buy the set at several online retailers. To get you a good deal I’ve looked around a bit to do some comparison shopping, so let’s look at our options:

  1. Your trusty local game store
  2. Amazon
  3. eBay
  4. TCGPlayer

Wrap Up

Jin-Gitaxias. Core Augur - Illustration by Eric Deschamps

Jin-Gitaxias, Core Augur | Illustration by Eric Deschamps

Phew, I’m sure that was a lot to digest! But with this, we’ve got you covered for your new school year. Don’t forget to stay out of the big platypus Wandering Archaic‘s way on your walk to class!

If this is your first time on Draftsim, make sure to check out our MTGA tracker, Arena Tutor. We’re going to be adding even more functionality to it soon and, best of all, it’s free!

That’s all I’ve got for you today. Have a good one!

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