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5, May, 24

New MTG Thunder Junction Spoilers Boast Cycle of Broken Moxen Conjurers!

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Releasing on May 7, Alchemy: Thunder Junction will become available for use on MTG Arena. While this group of supplemental cards is rather small with 30 in total, we’ve seen Alchemy sets have a huge impact on Arena formats in the past. Crucias, Titan of the Waves, for example, has become an Alchemy and Historic staple in midrange shells. Meanwhile, Fragment Reality ended up being so broken that the card had to be nerfed!

While it seems unlikely that we are going to run into the same issue this time around, that doesn’t mean there aren’t some potential powerhouses here. For instance, there is a whole cycle of Creatures that allow you to Conjure original Moxen into your hand when particular conditions are met! Alpha Oracle is an Alchemy staple, and we may now see some other Power Nine generators influence the format. The Creatures in this set are truly not messing around, so let’s take a look at some of the strongest of the bunch.

Ruby Collector

Ruby Collector

Of the five Creatures capable of Conjuring up a Mox to your hand, Ruby Collector looks like most powerful. It naturally slots right into Convoke shells, pairing exceptionally well with token production. What’s nice about Ruby Collector is that you don’t have to attack with it in order to trigger its ability. With this in mind, Gleeful Demolition is extremely strong in conjunction with Ruby Collector. Not only does it produce three Creatures to attack with, but you can buff those Creatures in combat at will.

From there, your free Mox Ruby plays multiple roles. Obviously, you now have extra mana to sink into Ruby Collector or Imodane’s Recruiter. On top of that though, it’s a free Artifact to fuel Warden of the Inner Sky and gives you a fresh target for Gleeful Demolitions that may rot in your hand otherwise. Ruby Collector simply does a lot for one mana and seems like a neat addition to an already strong archetype.

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Jet Collector

Jet Collector

While Ruby Collector looks like it has the best home in Alchemy, Jet Collector also seems quite strong. Getting four cards into your graveyard simply isn’t that difficult, and Jet Collector provides a nice payoff. Conjuring Mox Jet lets you get ahead on mana. If you’re in a Creature-heavy deck, you can sink that mana into Jet Collector and start reanimating your threats turn after turn.

Jet Collector works particularly well alongside Insidious Roots. Cards like Rubblebelt Maverick, Blanchwood Prowler, and Tyvar, Jubilant Brawler help you reach the four-card threshold for Jet Collector. From there, Jet Collector’s ability to return Creatures to play will also trigger Insidious Roots as a bonus.

Once you branch out to Historic, you get access to Otherworldly Gaze and Merfolk Secretkeeper as ways to enable Jet Collector as early as turn two. Even if this isn’t the most powerful interaction, it’s worth keeping an eye on, nonetheless.

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Rankle, Pitiless Trickster

Rankle, Pitiless Trickster

Moving on from the Collector cycle, there are plenty of other Creatures that have synergistic potential. Perhaps the most intriguing of the bunch is Rankle, Pitiless Trickster. Rankle has a lot going on. First of all, if you can keep the opponent’s board clear of Creatures, Rankle threatens to turn the tides immediately. When you play Rankle, you can choose to force each player to sacrifice a Creature and discard a card.

If you have the resources necessary to do so, you definitely should. Rankle gets a permanent buff whenever ANYONE discards a card! In Alchemy, Liliana of the Veil is a great card to pair with Rankle. Using its +1 ability repeatedly will make Rankle an extremely scary card, while using its -2 ability can keep the coast clear.

In Brawl, Rankle seems like an amazing legend to use as your general. There aren’t many “Wheel” effects on MTG Arena, but something like Awaken the Erstwhile can make Rankle close to lethal by itself. With multiplayer inevitably coming to Arena, Rankle is sure to become more terrifying.

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Emperor Apatzec Intli IV

Emperor Apatzec Intli IV

Up next, we have a legend that turns all of your four-mana 4/4s and beyond into massive bombs. Emperor isn’t the easiest card in the world to cast and it doesn’t generate any value by itself, by if it sticks around, the opponent is in a world of trouble. There are tons of beefy four-drops to follow up with, and the life buffer plus card advantage you gain gives you lots of inevitability.

For Alchemy specifically, the fact that Delighted Halfling is legal is a huge boon if you’re trying to make this card work. Not only does it ramp you towards Emperor, but it even fixes your colors for you and ensures that Emperor can’t be countered. Imagine following up Emperor with a turn three Anzrag, the Quake-Mole. In addition to gaining four life and Seeking a Creature, your Anzarg gains Haste and you can bash for eight right away! Emperor opens up a world of awesome possibilities, so it’ll be cool to see what players come up with.

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Stalwart Realmwarden

Stalwart Realmwarden

The last card we’re going to cover today is definitely less flashy than the others but is still a worthwhile consideration for aggressive decks. Stalwart Realmwarden is similar to cards like Elite Spellbinder and Anointed Peacekeeper in its role. If you’re playing a beatdown deck, cards like these help you disrupt the opponent enough so you can cross the finish line.

Often times, taking Sunfall or another board wipe can give you just enough time to get 20 damage in. The downside with cards like these, though, is that they don’t tie up the opponent’s mana at all. If the opponent has multiple strong plays to make in their hand, you’re going to struggle either way.

Cards like Aven Interrupter solve this problem but force you to leave up mana in the hopes of tagging a spell. This works great when you’re far ahead on board, but otherwise your opponent may sniff out your plan and pass the turn with all their mana available. What Stalwart Realmwarden accomplishes is it gives you a proactive play that is guaranteed to mess with an opponent casting non-Creature spells of any kind.

As such, Stalwart Realmwarden can still help you get under a board wipe but ensures the opponent’s mana is tied up with whatever non-Creature spell they decide to cast. Of course, Stalwart doesn’t affect Creature spells, so it may be relegated to the sideboard if it makes the cut. Against heavy control archetypes as well as some combo decks, though, Stalwart has the potential to be rather disruptive.

Alchemy: Thunder Junction is coming soon, and despite only showcasing 30 cards, has the chance to shake up the format a decent amount. While we highlighted what we think are some of the best cards in the set, these aren’t the only gems. There are lots of powerful options at our disposal, so it’ll be cool to see how players begin to incorporate them.

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