Murders at Karlov Manor Mechanics Art
16, Jan, 24

Murders at Karlov Manor Debut Reveals Four New MTG Mechanics

Article at a Glance

After a short break over the holidays, Wizards of the Coast has returned in full force. For better or worse, this means that MTG’s practically endless spoiler season has started once again! Only a few days ago Wizards released Ravnica Remastered, and now Murders at Karlov Manor is here! Stealing the show with its debut stream, MTG players now have oodles of cards, mechanics, and lore to digest.

While it’s hard to beat the excitement of new MTG cards, it’s hard to overstate the importance of mechanics. After all, you need to know what the cards you’re looking at do, since reading the card doesn’t always explain everything anymore. Thankfully, to make sure you’re properly clued into this murder mystery set, we’ve got you covered.

Here’s everything you need to know about all the new mechanics that Murders at Karlov Manor has to offer!


Aurelia's Vindicator

Like all the mechanics in Murders at Karlov Manor, Disguise is incredibly well named from a flavor perspective. Quite literally used to disguise your cards on the battlefield, Disguise is essentially Morph 2: Electric Boogaloo. In case you’re unfamiliar with this classic Onslaught mechanic, this means Disguise allows you to play cards face down.

Rather than just being a carbon copy of Morph, Disguise does have a few tricks up its sleeve. Namely, when a Disguised card is faced down, it has Ward 2, alongside being a 2/2 with no other abilities. In theory, this is a direct upgrade from Morph.

Just like Morph, you can turn a Disguised card face up at any time by paying its Disguise cost. Interestingly, this action does not use the Stack so opponents cannot respond to it. Obviously, this makes Disguise an especially useful tool if you want a major threat to land or surprise opponents.


Etrata, Deadly Fugitive

Parallel to Disguise, it seems Cloak is also a keyword in Murders at Karlov Manor. Since it appears on Etrata, Deadly Fugitive this seems to be an open and shut case. Frustratingly, in this instance, reading the card does not explain the card, however, Wizards has come to the rescue. Thanks to their explanation, we now know that Cloak is Manifest 2.0.

Just as Disguse is to Morph, Cloak is to Manifest. This means that a Cloaked card is played face-down as a 2/2 with Ward 2. If you want to flip this creature, all you have to do is pay its mana cost, nothing more, nothing less.


Agrus Kos, Spirit of Justice

Continuing the trend of flavorfully named mechanics, next up we have Suspect. This mechanic is a brand-new label that can be applied to creatures. Once on a creature, they’ll become Suspected until they leave the Battlefield or another effect causes them to lose the label. On its own, when a creature is Suspected, it gains Menace and can’t block.

Since the Suspect label seems to be quite difficult to remove, Wizards has created a helper token. Placed on top of a creature, this physical token should help you keep track of who is a Suspect with relative ease. This will make sure you don’t miss out when using cards like Agrus Kos, Spirit of Justice. 


Axebane Ferox

As you might hope given the set’s murder mystery theme, Murders at Karlov Manor also features Evidence. Much like Decend from The Lost Caverns of Ixalan, this mechanic has multiple different parts and variants. Thankfully, each of these is fairly easy to understand as they all surround a central theme.

Seen as Collect Evidence on Axebane Ferox, the Evidence mechanic cares about Exiling cards from your graveyard. Specifically, to Collect Evidence, you must Exile cards from your graveyard with a total mana value equal to or higher than the listed number. In the case of Axebane Ferox, you need to Exile a total mana value of four or more to pay its Ward cost.

Alongside Collect Evidence, this new mechanic can also appear as a Kicker variant. Seen as “if evidence was collected,” on cards, this mechanic can be used to unlock additional abilities when entering the battlefield. 


Case of the Filched Falcon

Last up for the set’s new mechanics, Murders at Karlov Manor also features a brand-new Enchantment subtype; cases. While they might look surprisingly similar to Sagas, Cases are something new entirely, however, they do similarly tell a story. Allowing you to solve a case through gameplay, this new mechanic is definitely a major flavor win.

As for the Cases themselves, each one offers a pair of abilities, one that is active as soon as they Enter the Battlefield and one after they’re solved. Typically, as you might expect, the Solved ability is stronger, giving you an incentive to solve the Case. To do this, each card has its own requirement which must be met, making each Case unique and interesting. 

Harkening back to Class spells from Adventures in the Forgotten Realms, Cases seem to have an immense amount of potential. Since we’ve only seen a few Case spells so far, however, we’ll have to wait and see if this gets realized or not. 


Auspicious Arrival

While it’s not a new mechanic, we’d be remiss not to mention Investigate to cover all bases. Initially seen way back in Shadows over Innistrad, this flavorful mechanic allows for easy Clue Token generation. As always, these Clue Tokens can be cracked by paying two mana. After paying this cost, the Clue Token is sacrificed and you draw a card, it’s as simple as that.

Read More: New MTG Karlov Manor Commander Generates Tons of Clues and Spirits!

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