This week we return to Kamigawa for Sunday’s draft.  Kamigawa has been one of the most impactful in Standard since it arrived in 2022.

Based on data from 17lands.com, below are the best cards to draft from Kamigawa: Neon Dynasty.

COMMON

The commons from the set offer a strong group of cards that fit into white, blue, or black decks.

  • Okiba Reckoner Raid
  • Imperial Oath
  • Spirited Companion – One of the most played cards from the set. Spirited Companion gives you card draw with a body left behind.
  • Moon-Circuit Hacker
  • Network Disruptor
  • The Modern Age
  • Virus Beetle
  • Twisted Embrace
  • Suit Up
  • Moonsnare Specialist
  • Tamiyo’s Safekeeping – Another of the most played cards from the set. Tamiyo’s Safekeeping protects a creature from targeted removal.

UNCOMMON

Green enchantments highlight the best uncommon cards from the set.  A deck built around these cards has seen significant play in Standard since the set arrived.

  • Blossom Prancer
  • Kappa Tech-Wrecker
  • Life of Toshiro Umezawa
  • Behold the Unspeakable
  • Boseiju Reaches Skyward
  • Circuit Mender
  • Silver-Fur Master – Rat and rogue lord.
  • Twinshot Sniper – Deals 2 damage to any target when it enters the battlefield.
  • Oni-Cult Anvil – Has a Standard deck built around its ability to create a 1/1 colorless Construct artifact creature token when an artifact leaves the battlefield on your turn. Anvil can also sacrifice an artifact to deal 1 damage to each opponent and you gain a life.
  • Jukai Naturalist – A mainstay in Enchantment decks in Standard. Jukai Naturalist reduces the cost of casting an enchantment by one colorless mana.  This usually allows you to quickly empty your hand.
  • Kumano Faces Kakkazan – A key player in Mono-Red. Kumano Faces Kakkazan is one of the best one-drop red spells ever printed.
  • Generous Visitor – A key part of the Selesnya Enchantment deck. It puts a +1/+1 counter on a target creature each time you cast an enchantment.
  • Touch the Spirit Realm – Enchantment-based removal.
  • Banishing Slash – Destroys an artifact, enchantment, or tapped creature.
  • Michiko’s Reign of Truth – This saga gives a target creature +1/+1 until the end of the turn for each artifact and/or enchantment you control. Then transforms into Portrait of Michiko and has power and toughness equal to the number of artifacts and enchantments you control.

RARE

The rare cards from Kamigawa: Neon Dynasty gave the set a high-power level.  Three of them ended up banned in standard because of how they warped the format.

  • Fable of the Mirror-Breaker – Saga that creates a 2/2 goblin creature token on chapter 1, chapter 2 allows you to discard up to two cards and then draw that many, and chapter 3 transforms Fable into Reflection of Kiki-Jiki. Reflection can copy a nonlegendary creature that is sacrificed at the beginning of the next end step.  Fable is banned in Standard because of its power.
  • Farewell – exiles any combination of artifacts, creatures, enchantments, and/or graveyards.
  • Inventive Iteration – In Chapter 1, you get to return a target creature or planeswalker to its owner’s hand. Chapter 2 allows you to return an artifact to your hand from the graveyard.  When you can’t return an artifact from the graveyard you get to draw a card.  Then in Chapter 3, it transforms into Living Breakthrough a 3/3 flyer that can prevent your opponent from casting a spell of a mana value that you cast that turn.
  • Tatsunari, Toad Rider – This human ninja creates Keimi, a 3/3 black and green frog creature token with ‘Whenever you cast an enchantment spell, each opponent loses 1 life and you gain 1 life.
  • Invoke the Ancients – Creates two 4/5 green spirit creature tokens with a vigilance, reach, or trample counter.
  • Tameshi, Reality Architect – This 2/3 moonfolk wizard with two strong abilities. First, Tameshi has “Whenever one or more non creature permanents are returned to hand, draw a card.  You can also pay X and a white mana to return a land you control to its owner’s hand.  Then you may target an artifact or enchantment with mana value X or less and return it from your graveyard to the battlefield.
  • Reckoner Bankbuster – This two-mana artifact vehicle enters the battlefield with three charge counters on it. You may pay two mana to remove a charge counter and draw a card.  When you remove the last counter, you create a treasure and a 1/1 colorless Pilot creature token.  Bankbuster crews for three.  It has also been banned in Standard.
  • Teachings of the Kirin – Another strong sage that fits well into an enchantment deck. Teachings gives you a 1/1 colorless spirit creature token, a +1/+1 counter, and transforms into Kirin-Touched Orochi that activates an ability each time it attacks.
  • The Reality Chip – A 0/4 creature that reconfigures into an equipment that allows you to play and cast spells from the top of your library.
  • The Restoration of Eiganjo – This saga allows you to search your library for a plain in chapter 1, chapter 2 returns a permanent with mana value of 2 or less to the battlefield. Chapter 3 transforms Restoration into Architect of Restoration, a 3/4 fox monk with vigilance that creates a 1/1 spirit creature token each time it attacks or blocks.
  • Kami of Transience – Another creature from the Selesnya enchantment deck. Kami has trample and gets a +1/+1 counter each time you cast an enchantment.

MYTHIC RARE

Jugan Defends the Temple – This saga Creates a 1/1 green human monk token with tap this token to add a green mana.  Chapter 2 puts a +1/+1 counter on up to two target creatures.  Chapter 3 transforms it into Remnant of the Rising Star, a 2/2 dragon spirit with flying that allows you to use extra mana to add +1/+1 counters to Remnant of the Rising Sun.

The Wandering Emperor – Best planeswalker in Standard.

Junji, the Midnight Sky – 5/5 Dragon spirit with flying and menace.  When Junji dies, you either force an opponent to discard two cards and lose 2 life or put a target non-dragon creature card from a graveyard onto the battlefield under your control.

The Kami War – Another powerful saga.  In Chapter 1, you exile a target nonland permanent that an opponent controls.  Chapter 2 allows you to return up to one other target nonland permanent to its owner’s hand.  Then your opponent discards a card.  Chapter 3 transforms Kami War into O-Kagachi Made Manifest, a 6/6 flyer with trample.  When O-Kagashi attacks your opponent selects a nonland permanent in your graveyard.  That card is returned to your hand and gives O-Kagachi +X/+0 until the end of the turn where X is the mana value of the card returned to your hand.

Ao, the Dawn Sky – 5/4 dragon spirit with flying and vigilance.  When Ao dies, you either look at the top seven cards of your library and put a nonland permanent into your hand with a mana value of 4 or less.  Or the second option is to put two +1/+1 on each permanent you control that’s a creature or vehicle.

Kairi, the Swirling Sky -Our third dragon spirit is Kairi.  Kairi is a 6/6 with flying and ward 3.  When Kairi dies you either return any number of target nonland permanents with a total mana value of 6 or less to their owner’s hand or mill six cards, then return up to two instant and/or sorcery cards from your graveyard to your hand.

Kura, the Boundless -Our fourth dragon spirit is Kura.  Kura is a 4/4 with flying and deathtouch.  When Kura dies you either search your library for up to three land cards that you reveal and put them into your hand, or you can create an X/X green spirit creature token where X is the number of lands you control.

Kaito Shizuki – This Dimir planeswalker has seen a lot of constructed play, like The Wandering Emperor, since Kaito entered Standard.  The turn Kaito comes into play, he phases out at the end of the turn.  His +1 ability draws a card.  Then if you did not attack this turn, you must discard a card.  His -2 ability creates a 1/1 blue ninja creature token with “This creature can’t be blocked.”  Finally, his -7 gives you an emblem with “Whenever a creature you control deals combat damage to a player, search your library for a blue or black creature card, put it onto the battlefield then shuttle.”

Atsushu, the Blazing Sky – Our final dragon spirit is Atsushi.  Atsushi is a 4/4 with flying and trample.  When Atsushi dies you can either exile the top two cards of your library.  You may play them until the end of your next turn.  Or create three treasure tokens.

Blade of the Oni – This equipment demon is a 3/1 with menace.  You can reconfigure it for four mana.  When you do, the equipped creature has base power and toughness 5/5, and is a black demon in addition to its other colors and types.

That’s my look at the best cards to draft from Kamigawa: Neon Dynasty.  I’ll see you next time.

By: Scott Trepanier

Scott began playing Magic the Gathering in 1994.  His preferred format is standard.  Typically, you will see him playing aggro decks focused on quickly defeating his opponent but will pivot to midrange or control when standard is unfavorable for aggro decks.  He began creating Magic content in 2019.