Streets of New Capenna has been out for a while now and we’re starting to size up the set for both Constructed and Limited. There are many exciting new cards, and I have really been enjoying the themes of the set. However, as I’ll get into later on, the set is lacking in balance between its five infamous families. With a Limited Arena Open coming this weekend, and many opportunities for play online and in stores, now seems like the perfect time for a quick guide to New Cappena Limited in case you haven’t been able to test out the format too much!

Let’s start with some broad takeaways about the format. For one, your early plays matter. Although the games sometimes go long, it is important to build an early advantage early in games, or at least make sure your opponent doesn’t run away with the game. As well, there are a lot of great cards higher up the curve in this set. Four- and five-drops are abundant, and it will be hard to not end up with enough. In contrast, three-drops and especially two-drops are harder to come by. Since early plays are important and also scarce, it is very important to prioritize them when drafting!

Another note, there are a ton of great flyers in this set, and you need to have a plan for them. Luckily, removal is also fairly abundant. If you’re not playing fliers yourself you better hope you have some good removal. As well, High-Rise Sawjack is a good card to keep around for matchups with the UW decks.

Let’s take a look at each of the five families and their strategies to get a more in-depth idea of what the format is like.



The Brokers are the most powerful family in New Capenna, at least in Limited. This deck is usually built on the back of all the powerful white creatures in this set, like Inspiring Overseer and Raffine’s Informant. Blue provides a number of excellent fliers, including Celestial Regulator. Meanwhile green provides some powerful and efficient creatures on the ground. This archetype is fairly aggressive and is also able to disrupt opponents in a tempo-oriented fashion with bounce and fight spells. Some of the best Brokers cards are Spara’s Adjudicators, Inspiring Overseer, and Civil Servant.


The Obscura have also been faring well in Limited so far, and much of that is because the blue and white fliers that do so well for the Brokers also apply here. Obscura decks are typically less aggressive, and aim to take over the skies in the late game while controlling opponent’s boards. Black removal including Whack and Deal Gone Bad helps a lot with slowing down aggressive opponents and taking care of dangerous threats. Some of the best Obscura cards are Celestial Regulator, Obscura Initiate, and Syndicate Infiltrator.


The Maestros are probably the most controlling archetype and since so many players have been flocking to play Brokers and Obscura, there are often more Maestros cards to go around. Red and black removal makes controlling the board possible, and curve-topping creatures like Glamorous Outlaw and Girder Goons come in late to start dominating the battlefield. The important thing for Maestros decks is to not fall too far behind on board, and to have a plan for ending games. Many Maestros decks use Casualty cards like Make Disappear alongside Expendable Lackey and other cheap 1/1’s to gain card advantage. Some of the best Maestros cards include Murder, Strangle, and Tainted Indulgence.


The Cabaretti aren’t getting as much hype as some of the other families, but when a good aggressive Cabaretti deck comes together it can be very scary. The Cabaretti are all about playing as many creatures as possible. Inspiring Overseer and Raffine’s Informant from white are excellent, and green and red creatures provide the punch. Security Rhox, for example, is a solid four-drop that can put on the pressure. Meanwhile, Sizzling Soloist and Plasma Jockey will give blockers a headache and help push your creatures through. A successful Cabaretti deck has a tight curve, just enough disruption to get by, and a lot of creatures. The best Cabaretti cards include Brazen Upstart, Raffine’s Informant, and Hold for Ransom.


The common consensus is that the Riveteers are the least powerful of the five families. However, there will still be times where you find yourself being pushed into playing them. When you do, know that the Riveteers work best as a midrange deck that is powered by large creatures. Prioritize taking red and black removal, since that will be in demand for other players, and then make sure to take some good early plays as well. The Riveteers have a lot of great options at four, five, and six mana, so the key to a decent deck is finding the powerful two and three drops. As well, make sure you have a plan against fliers! Some of the best Riveteers cards are Jewel Thief, Girder Goons, and Security Rhox.


The families may not be perfectly balanced, but that hasn’t stopped me from enjoying the format as of yet. The highly interactive gameplay has kept me engaged so far! One of the main reasons the families aren’t balanced is that white is very powerful in this set. Below I have listed my pick for the top common of each colour, and as you can probably see, the best white common is also the best common by a good margin.

White – Inspiring Overseer

Black – Murder

Green – Jewel Thief

Blue – Echo Inspector

Red – Strangle

This set is definitely defined by its commons, as well as the many powerful multicolour uncommons that draw you into the families, like the cycle of charms that each family has. However, there are still many bombs to watch out for!

Each of the planeswalkers is amazing, and will almost certainly win the game if they’re played. Elspeth and Vivien are particularly incredible, while Ob Nixilis is a bit more situational, and not necessarily worth splashing for as much. Aside from the planeswalkers, Sanctuary Warden, Titan of Industry, and Soul of Emancipation have been making waves as absolutely unbeatable bombs. Make sure you take them if you open them in pack one!

Hopefully you now feel more ready to take on the Streets of New Capenna! There are a lot of fun new cards and mechanics in this set, and so you haven’t tried it out yet I’d definitely recommend entering a Premier Draft on Arena or playing at your LGS. If you are planning on entering the Arena Open this weekend or any other upcoming Limited tournaments, then good luck to you!


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