Last updated on October 15, 2023
Arid Mesa | Illustration by Raymond Swanland
There are a lot of options when it comes to lands in Magic. Deciding which ones to include in your deck can be a difficult and time-consuming part of deck construction, but it’s also vitally important.
In an effort to make things easier for you, I’m going to go through the best land options for your Boros () decks. Here’s what I considered when ranking these lands:
- Speed: How quickly the land can start producing mana.
- Mana Production: How many colors the land can produce, and how much of each.
- Searchability: How easily the land can be searched for with other cards.
- Utility: What the land can do other than tapping for mana.
- Versatility: How many different circumstances the land is useful in.
Now that you know how I chose to rank these lands, let’s see what lands took the top spot!
Honorable Mention: Cryptic Spires
Designed to make mana fixing in Double Masters 2022 Drafts easier, Cryptic Spires removes the need for players to collect tap lands for all 2-color combinations. You can use it as a Boros land if you need another, or if you just don’t have a copy of any of the actual Boros tap lands.
Scabland is strictly worse than a normal dual land that enters tapped t to the damage that it deals to you. This card is only worth including if you need a colorless pip specifically for an Eldrazi creature, or if you can somehow benefit from taking damage.
#27. Stone Quarry
Dual tap lands are cheap and easily accessible in a variety of sets, making Stone Quarry a good option for players who are just getting into the game. While too slow for formats like Modern, a slower format like Commander is a good place for tap lands.
#26. Boros Guildgate
Distinguishable from typical tap lands only by its type line, Boros Guildgate is mainly useful in decks built around gate cards. These decks make use of cards like Gatekeeper Gargoyle and Hold the Gates that benefit from how many gates you control.
Gate decks are most effective when running five colors, so you can use this interchangeably with Stone Quarry if you’re sticking to just a Boros deck.
#25. Ancient Amphitheater
Lorwyn revolved around several different tribes of creatures, one of them being giants. Ancient Amphitheater is helpful in giant tribal decks, allowing you access to quick mana in the colors you need.
This card isn’t going to be too helpful outside of giant tribal. But this is functionally another tap land most of the time if you’re running one or two popular giants like Bonecrusher Giant.
#24. Rustvale Bridge
Artifact lands can come in handy with the right support. One of the top 24 commanders of recent years, Osgir, the Reconstructor, makes great use of artifact lands, as does any card with affinity for artifacts.
#23. Wind-Scarred Crag
Decks that include white have access to a lot of lifegain payoffs like Heliod, Sun-Crowned and Voice of the Blessed. While one life isn’t a big deal in the grand scheme of the game, Wind-Scarred Crag can get you some beneficial triggers if you’re building around lifegain.
#22. Sacred Peaks
Sacred Peaks is just above your average tapland that does nothing else. It has both basic land types, which means it can get fetched, and that does add to the value significantly. However, it's a weird day when you're running both fetchlands, and this card in the same deck. But hey, you have the option nonetheless, and that's what matters.
#21. Alpine Meadow
Like gates, snow lands are a special land type that synergizes with snow cards like Search for Glory. Mana produced by lands like Alpine Meadow is considered snow mana. Another benefit is the fact that this land is a Mountain Plains. This means you can search for it with a fetch land.
#20. Temple of Triumph
Temple of Triumph gives you a benefit over other tap lands by allowing you to scry. Scrying can be very useful because it allows you an idea of what your next card will be, or to skip drawing a card that you don’t need.
#19. Lorehold Campus
Another card that allows you to scry, Lorehold Campus edges out Temple of Triumph by having a repeatable scry effect. But it’s somewhat rare that activating this ability is the best use of your mana at four mana.
#18. Needle Spires
Lands that can become creatures like Needle Spires offer some nice advantages. Not only can you use it as a land, you can also use it to deal a little extra damage or block a big hit coming your way when you don’t have other creatures.
This is pretty strong because it has double strike when it becomes a creature. It’s also an elemental, so you can benefit from cards like Omnath, Locus of Rage that support the tribe if you’re dipping into other colors.
#17. Furycalm Snarl
A lot of the better dual lands give you the opportunity to have them enter untapped, which speeds up your ability to generate mana and keeps you on curve with your opponents. Furycalm Snarl is the lesser of these cards, but still a good choice.
The main downside is that it’s basically just a tap land if you don’t have another land of the right type in your hand, which might not always happen. It also requires you to literally show your hand, or at least one other card in it, giving your opponent valuable information. Still, just the chance that it can enter untapped does make it better than a lot of tap lands.
#16. Boros Garrison
Boros Garrison and the rest of the bounce lands were recently reprinted in Double Masters 2022, making them more readily available and even more affordable than before. This one is great for mana fixing since it taps for both red and white mana, and you don’t fall behind on mana despite bouncing a land.
#15. Sunhome, Fortress of the Legion
While it doesn’t tap for colored mana, Sunhome, Fortress of the Legion’s effect can be very strong. Giving a creature double strike not only doubles its potential damage output, it also allows it to take advantage of dealing first strike damage. This can make a creature a much more effective blocker, or let you attack knowing it’ll kill blockers before the normal damage step.
Double strike also lets you double up on damage triggers like the one on Ancient Copper Dragon. Or it can just end the game by allowing you to deal a ton of damage. Having the choice to give creatures this ability at instant speed makes Sunhome a great utility land for your deck.
#14. Path of Mettle / Metzali, Tower of Triumph
Although Path of Mettle doesn’t enter the battlefield as a land, it does make quite the entrance. It can deal that last bit of damage to a creature or potentially wipe out large armies of tokens or weak creatures for pretty cheap.
And it can tap for mana of any color and also offers a few other options once it transforms into Metzali, Tower of Triumph. This can be a helpful card in Commander since it deals its damage to each opponent. And being able to take out a creature that attacked you each turn is not only good removal, it’s also a good deterrent.
#13. Axgard Armory
With very few tutors at your disposal in a Boros deck, Axgard Armory can really help make sure that you’re finding cards you need when you need them. Whether you’re in need of Embercleave to deal out massive damage or Darksteel Mutation to shut down a dangerous threat, this land can tutor them up for you.
There are a few downsides to the card, like having to reveal the card you tutor and the cost of activating it. But with few other options for tutors this can be a great addition to any deck focused on equipment and auras.
#12. Restless Bivouac
Restless Bivouac is coming in tapped, no way around it. That's a bit more of a downside for Boros () than most archetypes given the aggressive nature, but what can you do? The land costs to turn on, and you get a 2/2 that gives any target creature you control a +1/+1 counter, which means this puppy gets stronger as it goes on. It's not too expensive to activate, gets better the longer the game goes on, and hits both your colors. You can't ask for much more on a creature land.
#11. Sundown Pass
Sundown Pass can pretty consistently come in untapped as long as you aren’t drawing it too early in the game. You’ll probably want to mulligan if you’re running a few copies and you draw multiple in your opening hand.
That said, this card is great once you have two other lands down because it gives you immediate mana in the colors you need with no extra cost. While it isn’t as consistent as some of the best dual lands, it can be just as good at the right time.
Commander is a great format for Sundown Pass since games go long and you have a pretty low chance of drawing this in your opening hand.
#10. Inspiring Vantage
The inverse of Sundown Pass, Inspiring Vantage is a faster card, but not as good later in the game. It does solve the opening hand problem I mentioned above, and dropping a dual land on turn 1 or 2 can be a great advantage for you.
This is going to enter tapped later on, but by then you’ll have some mana to play with which is better than being stuck with just a tapped land and no way to play cards. This is preferable for faster 1-v-1 formats.
#9. Spectator Seating
Although Spectator Seating is mainly going to be played in Commander, it’s so good there that I thought it deserved a higher spot on this list. It’s just a dual land that can enter untapped on turn 1 for most of the game.
#8. Clifftop Retreat
Whether it’s basics or dual lands like shocks, there’s a good chance you have at least one of the basic land types required when you play Clifftop Retreat. While fast lands and slow lands have times where they’re better, the Retreat is more consistent which is really what you want out of a dual land.
Coming in untapped as early as turn 2, this land can also be pretty quick. Just make sure you’re not keeping an opening hand with it if you don’t also have a Plains or Mountain.
While dual-faced lands can only tap for one mana, coming in untapped gives them a slight edge. You’re able to choose what type of mana you need to produce with Needleverge Pathway and tap for it the same turn you play it.
Making sure you can play cards on the mana curve each turn can be really important to staying in the game in quicker formats. It might even be worth giving up a dual land if you can get the type of mana you need when you need it.
#6. Rugged Prairie
Rugged Prairie is similar to cards like Clifftop Retreat in that it works best if you already have another land down. What’s nice about filter lands like this is that all you need is a land that taps for one of two colors. It also comes in untapped no matter what and can tap for colorless if need be.
One of the best parts about the Prairie is that it allows you to make multiple red mana without having any lands that tap for red, and the same for white. Allowing you to turn a Plains into two red mana is great for mana fixing and makes sure you can cast more restrictive costs involving multiple colored pips.
#5. Battlefield Forge
Pain lands like Battlefield Forge are some of the fastest dual lands available, which is why you often see them played in quick formats like Modern. Although they do damage to you, one or two won’t make a big difference in the game. Having access to immediate mana can also help remove threats and prevent yourself taking more than just one damage.
And this is just a normal dual land if you’re running a card like Blessed Sanctuary. It’s something to consider based on what cards you have in your deck.
#4. Sunbaked Canyon
There are often times in games when you need an extra card more than another land. Having this sort of versatility on the battlefield gives it a slight edge over similar lands.
#3. Arid Mesa
Fetch lands are some of the best lands despite not tapping for mana. Helping you search up either a Plains or Mountain when you need one is very helpful, and you can fetch up a dual land with Arid Mesa if you’re running any Mountain Plains in your deck.
Fetch lands also help you thin out your deck, making it more likely you draw into the cards you need. They can also allow you to get two landfall triggers on a single turn without an extra spell or effect.
#2. Sacred Foundry
Sacred Foundry, and shock lands in general, are some of the best dual lands available. Not only are they fetchable, they can also enter untapped for a relatively cheap cost. You of course have the option for them to enter tapped if you don’t need the mana immediately, and having the flexibility is nice.
These are some of the most commonly played dual lands since they’re legal in almost every format. And these lands will also be more available to players with their upcoming reprint in Unfinity.
True dual lands are really the best you can have when it comes to 2-colored lands. They’re fast, they produce two types of mana, and they can be fetched.
Unfortunately Plateau (and all true dual lands) aren’t legal in many formats and are prohibitively expensive for most players. But it definitely deserves a spot in your Commander or Legacy decks if you can get your hands on one.
Sacred Foundry | Illustration by Rob Alexander
Wherever you want to take your Boros decks, the one thing you definitely need is lands. Now you have a ranking of the best ones to reference and help you through the deckbuilding process. And each of these lands is good in its own way and has a place in some decks, so don’t worry if you don’t have access to the top-tier cards. Any of these lands can be helpful.
What are your thoughts on my rankings? Are there any lands you’d swap around? What colorless utility lands do you like to run in your Boros decks? Let me know in the comments below or on Draftsim’s Twitter.
I look forward to seeing you in the next one!
Follow Draftsim for awesome articles and set updates: