Exclusive Magic: The Gathering card reveal: Swindler's Scheme

Magic - A demon checks out his cool new sword
Local demon checks out his cool new, if decorative, sword. (Image credit: Wizards of the Coast/Hasbro)

With the newest Magic: the Gathering set, the demon heads of mafia families rule a glittering noir city. In this plane, five families are the core of both story and mechanics, serving a similar tri-color function to past examples. Like the shards and clans from Shards of Alara and Khans of Tarkir, their identities and flavor are central to the expansion. The cool factor is certainly there too this time, from the spooky limousines to the high class parties thrown by the Cabaretti family.

Several revealed cards have already made waves—including the final five in the cycle of ten "Triome" lands—and we're moving into the Commander phase of spoilers, where we learn what goodies Wizards has in store for the king of kitchen table Magic.

(Image credit: Wizards of the Coast)

Big spells are the cornerstone of Commander, and Swindler's Scheme is ready to foil their plans. Maybe the most interesting part of Swindler's Scheme is that it lets you make a choice. If you don't think a spell is important, you can wave it into the party, an Island-powered bouncer working your kitchen table like a high society party. But if you're worried about a spell, then you can reveal that card and see if it matches—a high stakes minigame if you're facing down a critical spell you don't want to deal with

There are a number of interesting ways to build around or include Swindler's Scheme in Commander. One method is to include it in a strategy of cards your opponents won't want to cast, either because they provide them no benefit or actively harm them. But the best is likely to be utilizing cards like Scroll Rack, Mystic Forge, Precognition Field, and Sensei's Divining Top to reorganize and stack your deck on the fly to deal with your enemies spells. You can even strike a bargain where you trade them a good spell for a bad spell, if you think you can trust them.

Streets of New Capenna hits MTG Arena on April 28th, a day ahead of the paper release on April 29th. Pre-release events will give you early access in paper starting on April 22nd. You can read more about the set's story and mechanics in our Magic: the Gathering Streets of New Capenna preview.

Sarah Richter

Sarah is a contributor for PC Gamer, formerly of TechRadar Gaming. With five years of experience writing freelance for several publications, she's covered every genre imaginable and probably a few she made up. She has a passion for diversity and the way different genres can be sandboxes for creativity and emergent storytelling, and loves worldbuilding. With thousands of hours in League of Legends, Overwatch, Minecraft, and countless survival, strategy, roguelike, and RPG entries, she still finds time for offline hobbies like tabletop RPGs, wargaming, miniatures painting, and hockey.