Magic: The Gathering’s huge catalogue of cards is constantly growing, with publisher Wizards of the Coast releasing new sets every year to keep the game fresh. This enormous library gives players endless options when building their decks, however some of the better cards can get lost in the shuffle.
With that in mind, Magic’s Masters sets reprint cards from their back catalogue, giving old favourites renewed relevance while introducing them to new players. The latest such set is Double Masters, which will include two rare or mythic rare cards and two shiny foil cards in each booster pack when it is released on August 7.
Today, Mashable can exclusively reveal one of the cards that has made it into Double Masters’ lineup: Sen Triplets, a Mythic Rare 3/3 Legendary Artifact Creature whose difficult mana cost is paid back with ridiculous power.
Originally printed in 2009’s Alara Reborn expansion, Sen Triplets requires five mana to play, including one Blue, one White, and one Black. This makes this card tricky to bring onto the battlefield, since most players stick to only two colours in their decks to ensure they’re more likely to draw the mana colour they need.
However, if you do manage to bring Sen Triplets into play, it’s more than worth the trouble. Professional Magic player David Mines told Mashable over email that, once on the board, Sen Triplets is “an absolute power house” that “steals a game very quickly.”
“It’s in my opinion the most powerful of the Esper (Blue, White and Black) generals and leads to some truly back breaking uphill battles for your opponents,” said Mines.
“This card seems like one of the most absurd bombs you could hope to play with.”
Sen Triplets’ value is in its triggered ability: “At the beginning of your upkeep, choose target opponent. This turn, that player can’t cast spells or activate abilities and plays with their hand revealed. You may play lands and cast spells from that player’s hand this turn.”
Basically, once you’ve put Sen Triplets on the battlefield, you can select one opponent at the start of your turn. That opponent can’t play any cards or activate any of their cards’ abilities during your turn, effectively leaving them defenceless. What’s more, the selected opponent has to show everyone all the cards they’re holding, which you can play as though they’re your own.
This isn’t a one-off ability either — as long as Sen Triplets remains on the board, you can keep doing this whenever your turn comes around. In Mines’ words, “this card seems like one of the most absurd bombs you could hope to play with.”
“Your opponents can’t interact with you while you do your thing, executing your combo, or it allows you to just take all the value from your opponent’s hands,” said Mines. “Blue, being infamous for countering all of your opponent’s spells, is matched perfectly with Black being able to take them from your opponent’s hands. This allows you to go to the next level and play them yourself. It’s like drawing cards and discarding your opponent’s cards all at the same time!”
Sen Triplets thus has the potential to cause your opponents a lot of distress, forcing them to sit idly by as you use their own cards against them turn after turn.
“You can use all their removal spells so they can’t actually deal with Sen Triplets, [or] play their best creatures (or if they’re very unlucky — Planeswalkers),” said Mines. “I would probably stop playing cards from my own hand so if they can ever deal with Sen Triplets you know you have a handful of cards to unload. I can guarantee that if I ever open this in a draft I will not be passing it. The difficult to cast colour mana requirements are offset by its truly bonkers power level.”
While some cards in the Double Masters set are getting updated art, Sen Triplets will be sticking to Greg Staples’ original 2009 artwork. Though updated aesthetics are a thrill, they’re just one reason for reprinting older Magic cards. Mines told Mashable reprints are also “very important for the economy of the game,” as they prevent powerful older cards from becoming exorbitant in price and ensures they’re accessible for newcomers.
“I think allowing these cards to be integrated with more commonly used Constructed cards is integral to the continuing ebb and flow of the Magic economy that’s essential for the game’s long term survival,” said Mines. “Allowing newer players to enter the game through a format like this and then on to the more competitive and esports formats!”
Magic: The Gathering‘s Double Masters set will be released on August 7 in both regular and VIP editions.