Magic: The Gathering’s Murders at Karlov Manor expansion is set to be one of the biggest of 2024, judging from the new mechanics and spoilers that are circulating.
A host of new expansions are set to come out in 2024 and Wizards of the Coast has confirmed the bulk of its release schedule for the year. The murder mystery-themed set Murders at Karlov Manor is the first major release for the game of 2024. The upcoming set will see Magic: The Gathering players returning to the ever-popular Ravnica to solve a planes-wide mystery involving a string of murders.
Of the dozens of upcoming cards revealed so far, a few stand out for their potential impact on the game, the lore, and the ever-expanding roster of planeswalkers. Here are all the biggest spoilers as well as the new, revised, and expanded mechanics coming in Murders at Karlov Manor.
Murders at Karlov Manor spoilers: The best cards in the next MTG expansion
Murders at Karlov Manor will include more than 100 new cards, but any longtime player knows that not all cards are created equal. These cards are likely to be the most impactful upon release.
Charms have a history of popular use in competitive play in Magic: The Gathering. These versatile cards allow the player to choose from two or more useful effects, all at instant speed. The Archdruid’s Charm is particularly notable for its first ability, specifically when applied to lands.
With it, players can get a bonus land card into play in classic Green mana-ramp fashion but can do it during their opponent’s turn. This means that, unlike other mana-ramp strategies, the new land card and the lands used to cast it will all be ready to use immediately on the player’s next turn. And if said player already has enough lands, the versatility of its other effects means it’s still not a dead draw.
Massacre Girl, Known Killer
Massacre Girl, Known Killer stuck out among the Murders at Karlov Manor spoilers thanks to her rad name, but she is also notable for using the Wither keyword mechanic. She grants this effect to all allied creatures, causing them to deal damage to other creatures in the form of -1/-1 counters.
What this means in practice is that with her in play, it becomes incredibly costly for the opponent to block attacks. In effect, it forces the opposing player to choose between taking direct damage and allowing their creatures to be weakened. What’s more, her second effect grants a card draw every time creatures are killed this way.
Kaya, Spirit’s Justice
Kaya, Spirit’s Justice is the brand-new featured Planeswalker for this set. She only starts with three loyalty counters but can gain them at an accelerated rate thanks to her +2 ability. Her abilities revolve around spirit summoning, exiled cards, and the Surveil keyword mechanic.
Most notably, Kaya allows the player to turn her summoned spirit tokens into temporary copies of the player’s exiled creature cards, but with flying. This can be a powerful way to reuse big creatures for easy damage by exiling them from the graveyard only to copy them with flying.
Disguise and Cloak, Collect Evidence mechanics may define Murders at Karlov Manor
Murders at Karlov Manor returns players to the fan-favorite Ravnica plane setting. Trouble is brewing in Ravnica, as Alquist Proft, Master Sleuth, sets out to solve a series of unexplained murders and attempted murders. Kaya, the new planeswalker, and Kellan, a returning character from previous adventures, join him in this attempt.
It’s not just the spoilers that have players theory-crafting, as Murders at Karlov Manor adds several new keyword mechanics appropriate to the murder mystery theme.
The Disguise and Cloak mechanics allow the player to cast creatures face down only to reveal them later for a surprise. The Investigate mechanic returns from previous sets to generate clue tokens which can be sacrificed for card draw. Collect Evidence can force the opponent to exile cards every time they attack a creature. Finally, the Suspect keyword can be used to give creatures Menace and prevent them from blocking.
The set also introduces a new type of Enchantment called Cases. All Case cards have a starting effect that’s active as soon as it hits the field. However, much like the murder mysteries taking center stage in the lore of this set, Case cards exist to be solved. To solve a Case, certain conditions have to be met, like “control three or more artifacts.” Once the case is solved, it can then be sacrificed to trigger an additional beneficial effect.