Coven, Decayed mechanics debut in Innistrad: Midnight Hunt

Rise from the grave or come together.

MTG Innistrad
Image via WotC

For Magic: The Gathering‘s third trip to Innistrad, two new mechanics put a Creature-based approach at the forefront with Coven and Decayed.

Both mechanics will be key parts of Innistrad: Midnight Hunt‘s Limited format and should be major players in the upcoming post-rotation Standard.

Decayed takes advantage of the graveyard and will play well with the set’s Zombie synergies. Decayed Zombie tokens come in as 2/2 Creatures that can’t block and are sacrificed at the end of combat if they attack.

Wizards of the Coast revealed a Legendary Creature that helps strengthen the Black-aligned Decayed archetype.

Jadar, Ghoulcaller of Nephalia

Jadar, Ghoulcaller of Nephalia
Jadar, Ghoulcaller of Nephalia
  • Mana value: 1B
  • Type: Legendary Creature Human Wizard
  • Rarity: Rare
  • Stats: 1/1
  • First ability: At the beginning of your end step, if you control no Creatures with Decayed, create a 2/2 Black Zombie Creature token with Decayed.

Jadar consistently generates Decayed Zombie tokens. This is a great source of constant pressure on the battlefield. Since the tokens die after attacking, any death triggers you control will trigger. Expect sacrifice and graveyard strategies to take advantage of Jadar and the rest of the Decayed package.

Coven is the Green/White mechanic that gives you benefits for having three or more Creatures with different power stats.

This rewards a go-wide strategy with a variety of non-token Creatures. Since tokens have the same base power and toughness, non-token Creatures will be the best option for building a battlefield with diverse power stats.

Sigarda, Champion of Light

Sigarda, Champion of Light
Sigarda, Champion of Light
  • Mana value: 1GWW
  • Type: Legendary Creature Angel
  • Rarity: Mythic Rare
  • Stats: 4/4
  • Keywords: Flying, Trample
  • First ability: Humans you control get +1/+1.
  • Second ability: Coven – Whenever Sigarda attacks, if you control three or more Creatures with different powers, look at the top five cards of your library. You may reveal a Human Creature card from among them and put it into your hand. Put the rest on the bottom of your library in a random order.

Sigarda is a returning character that will impact Standard with her hefty stats and powerful ability. A 4/4 Flying threat with Trample punishes chump blockers. The anthem effect on Humans you control shouldn’t be overlooked, which can be enough to get a utility Creature out of Dragon’s Fire or Frost Bite range.

The Coven ability draws you a Human, which would enter the battlefield with +1/+1 thanks to Sigarda. Mono-White Aggro already runs plenty of Humans. With the deck losing a lot of key cards with rotation, though, the strategy could shift to a Green/White base. Sigarda works well with heavy hitters like Luminarch Aspirant and Elite Guardmage.

Midnight Hunt releases on Magic Arena and Magic Online on Sept. 16. A global tabletop launch will take place on Sept. 24.