Top Commons and Uncommons in Core Set 2019 (P1)

by Zen Takahashi on 09 July 2018, Monday

Zen Takahashi


Top Commons and Uncommons in Core Set 2019 (Part 1)

Hello everybody!

As I have done with previous sets, I will be going over what I believe are the best commons and uncommons for each color in Core Set 2019. 

This is written in the perspective of drafting, but a lot of it will hold true for sealed as well. As I am yet to play any games of this format, it is likely that some of these evaluations will change once I start drafting the set – but hopefully, this provides you with some direction in this new format.

Today I will be covering White, Blue and Black. In my next article, I will be round it off by discussing Red and Green. 


White's Top 3 Uncommons


Hieromancer's Cage Herald of Faith Militia Bugler

1. Hieromancer's Cage

Unconditional removal spells are always a premium in limited, and Hieromancer's Cage has the bonus of being able to exile any nonland permanent – as opposed to just creatures. I expect this will be one of the best uncommons in the set behind Murder, and you would be happy first to pick it – mainly as White looks to be the best color, and the set also has a lot of mana fixing so you can splash it even if you do not end up in White.

2. Herald of Faith 

A five mana 4/3 flier is right-sized, but Herald of Faith has the bonus of gaining you life whenever it attacks.

This is very relevant as White has a life gain theme to it – with payoff cards such as Ajani's Pridemate. It also can attack into Giant Spider, which is one of the vital anti-flying cards of the set. 

3. Militia Bugler 

The strength of Militia Bugler largely depends on how many early drops you have. Looking over the White cards in this set, there seems to be a strong, aggressive theme with cards such as Pegasus Courser, Star-Crowned Stag and Angel of the Dawn. Based on that, I suspect this card would be great in most White decks – and being able to find Gallant Cavalry with this is significant. 

White's Top 3 Commons


Luminous Bonds Pegasus Courser Star-Crowned Stag

1. Luminous Bonds 

There is not too much to say about Luminous Bonds – three mana Pacifism effects are almost always the best White common in every set it is printed in, and I do not imagine that would change here. It may even be better in Core Set 2019 than in previous sets due to the presence of Auras in this format. 

2. Pegasus Courser 

Our team had Pegasus Courser as the best common in Dominaria, and it is likely that it will be one of the best commons in Core Set 2019 as well. Pegasus Courser is great in any aggressive deck, as it represents a large chunk of damage in the air. It also pairs nicely with Oreskos Swiftclaw and Star-Crowned Stag

3. Star-Crowned Stag 

Territorial Hammerskull is back – although this time, it is in the form of a four drop. This extra cost does make it worse than the previously printed dinosaur, but I expect this will still be a great card in any aggressive deck. Between Pegasus Courser and Star-Crowned Stag, these aggressive White decks can make blocking very difficult for their opponent. 

Blue's Top 3 Uncommons


Exclusion Mage Sleep Switcheroo


1. Exclusion Mage 

Man-o'0War is back, although thankfully in the form of an uncommon this time! Exclusion Mage is great in any blue deck as it can snowball and allow you to tempo your opponent out when you are ahead, but it can also help you when you are behind by bringing back some of that tempo. 

2. Sleep 

Similar to Time of Ice in Dominaria, the strength of Sleep largely depends on your archetype. I suspect it will underwhelming in control decks, but it will be one of the best cards you can have in an aggressive or tempo-based deck – such as Blue-White fliers or Blue-Red Spells. Although it does not fit in every Blue deck, I rate Sleep highly because I expect it to be one of the key cards for some of the best archetypes in the format. 

3. Switcheroo 

Although Switcheroo is far from Mind Control, being able to trade your worst creature for their best creature is still an exchange you would be happy with in many situations – especially as core sets tend to have a large volume of bomb rares. I also would not have rated Switcheroo this highly if it was not for the fact that Aviation Pioneer is in the set, as these two cards pair nicely together. 



Blue's Top 3 Commons


Dwindle Salvager of Secrets Aven Wind Mage

1. Dwindle 

I liked Deep Freeze in Dominaria, and Dwindle is even better than Deep Freeze! Unlike Deep Freeze, the creature you have enchanted can only block once, and it is likely that giving the enchanted creature minus six power should be enough to stop most creatures from attacking you.

While this is not as good as Luminous Bonds, it is a lot closer than you might initially think, and I am happy to have such an effect in Blue. 

2. Salvager of Secrets 

Blue seems to have a strong control theme to it in this set, with counterspells such as Essence Scatter and Cancel, alongside card draw such as Divination and Sift. I suspect Salvager of Secrets will be a key card for these control decks, and it will be at its best when paired with Red or Black, as you can then start recurring removal spells. 

3. Aven Wind Mage

Wind Drake is generally a card I am happy to play in any core set, and Aven Wind Mage is just that but with a bonus. With Blue-White Fliers and Blue-Red Spells both looking to be a strong archetype in this format, I suspect Aven Wind Mage would be a critical common for any aggressive or spell-based Blue deck. 

Black's Top 3 Uncommons


Murder Gravedigger Vampire Sovereign

1. Murder 

Being able to kill any creature for three mana at instant speed is just absurd in limited. It is likely Murder will be the best uncommon in the set. 

2. Gravedigger

Similar to Exclusion Mage, I am glad that Gravedigger is being reprinted as an uncommon instead of a common, as the card is just too good – especially in multiples! Gravedigger is a straight two-for-one, and it is great in any long game as you can return your best creature. There is also some self-mill in this format, which Gravedigger pairs nicely with. 

3. Vampire Sovereign 

Between Shining Aerosaur and Cloudreader Sphinx, we have seen a fair bit of five mana 3/4 fliers in limited formats recently. Vampire Sovereign is a solid five drop, and its six-point life swing upon entering the battlefield gives it some insurance against the various removal spells that exist in this format. If you also have any life gain pay-off such as Ajani's Pridemate, then the card becomes even better. 




Black's Top 3 Commons


Lich's Caress Skymarch Bloodletter Strangling Spores

1. Lich's Caress

A five mana unconditional removal spell has become a staple common in Black, and one that I am happy to have a few copies of in any of my Black decks – though they do have diminishing returns as they can be clunky in multiples. Like many Black cards in this set, Lich's Caress comes with some life gain. This makes me think that Black-White Lifegain may be a decent archetype, and being aggressive in this format may be more difficult than it looks due to the amount of incidental life gain. 

2. Skymarch Bloodletter 

Core Set 2019 sure does feature a lot of reprints of recently printed cards! Although I do not expect Skymarch Bloodletter to be as good in this format as it was in Ixalan due to its creature type not mattering and this format being less aggressive, it is still a solid three drop for any Black deck. Again, this card also comes with some incidental life gain. 

3. Strangling Spores 

Between Luminous Bonds, Dwindle and Lich's Caress, there seems to be a decent amount of sorcery speed removal spells – but finally, we have an instant removal spell!

Although at first glance it may seem like Strangling Spores can only kill small creatures, the fact that it shrinks instead of deal damage means that you will often be able to ambush larger creatures in combat by making it smaller then handling it in combat. That being said, it is four mana, which does make it fairly easy to play around it.


I hope you enjoyed this article as I went over what I believe are the best commons and uncommons in White, Blue and Black in Core Set 2019. In my next article, I will be finishing off the series by covering Red and Green – so be sure to check that out!

Until next time!

Zen Takahashi
@mtgzen on Twitter 

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