The Mechanics of Shadows Over Innistrad

It seems that there’s another issue with leaks in regards to upcoming set spoilers. A few boosters packs of SoI somehow got opened and leaked online. Rather than focus on the cards themselves, here’s a rundown of the known mechanics.

We don’t have much so far, but here’s what we know. I didn’t want to look at any of the individual cards at this point as most of them seem to be the commons/uncommons you’ll only ever see in draft/sealed.

New Mechanics

  • Delirium – The condition for this mechanic is having four or more card types among the cards in your graveyard. On creatures, so far, it either grants an ability or makes it so an upkeep trigger doesn’t happen. On non-creatures it makes it so they have an improved effect. It’s possible this mechanic will be very strong in modern or older formats where it’s not hard to meet the condition, but in standard it will be much weaker with the loss of the fetchlands.
  • Skulk – This is another form of “evasion”, where the creature cannot be blocked by creatures with greater power.
  • Investigate – Seems to be the white mechanic, and currently only shows up on an instant. When the spell resolves, you get a Clue artifact token that allows you to pay 2 and sacrifice it to draw a card. Weak cantrips are weak, but it’s possible this will be on some neat things and it could possibly matter for decks where artifacts matter.

Returning Mechanics

  • Werewolves – Apparently Origins wasn’t the only return to double faced cards, with some new ones coming out in this set. This is a good time to remind players that if your sleeves are not transparent (as almost all non-black sleeves seem to be) you very much will want to use checklist cards in competitive tournaments.
  • Madness – Mitigating the horror of having to discard something by paying a cost (usually cheaper than the casting cost too) to play the spell and ignoring timing restrictions. This mechanic can be very good, especially when paired with cards that make you discard your own things (Lightning Axe is in the set, just saying). I’m curious to see just how far they’ll push this mechanic.

Chris Wendelboe

Chris is a level 2 judge from Ashland, New Hampshire. He enjoys Scapeshift, modern, and putting on the best events possible.