THS: Multicolor cards and color pairs

This spreadsheet lists the cards in Theros that are either multicolored or that get better if a player is playing a specific color pair. Some of these cards are perfectly playable on their own, e.g., Agent of Horizons is still a 3/2 for 3 mana, even if you’re not playing blue; but it’s quite a bit better if you’re also playing, or even splashing, blue. Note that this list does not include cards like Rageblood Shaman which is best in a R/B Minotaurs deck, but does not require Swamps or black mana/creatures itself.

W/U, W/B, U/B, B/R, R/G, and R/W have 4 such cards each, while the remaining 4 color pairs have 3 such cards each. Looking at the cards that are exceptional or bombs (since cards that are merely good aren’t sufficient reason to play a color pair), we see that the 5 colors with the highest average number of exceptional/bomb cards in a typical draft are also the 5 color pairs with an exceptional uncommon:

  • W/U: Battlewise Hoplite
  • U/B: Shipwreck Singer
  • B/R: Kragma Warcaller
  • B/G: Pharika’s Mender
  • G/U: Horizon Chimera

In this list, white and red occur once, blue and black occur thrice, and green occurs twice. This means that if you’re white or red, you’re least likely to open or be passed a very strong W/X or R/X multicolor card, so it’s safer to commit to a second color sooner. If you’re blue or black, you should try to delay jumping into a second color as long as possible so you can pick up exceptional multicolor cards that are being passed late when no one else is able to play them. Doing this enabled me to get triple Shipwreck Singer in one draft, and double Kragma Warcaller in another.

Also, 6 of the 10 color combinations have more good/exceptional/bomb multicolor cards, so there’s more incentive to draft them. On the other hand, U/B, U/R, B/G, and R/G have few such cards (even though there are dual lands for U/B and R/G in Theros), so there’s less incentive to draft these color pairs unless you get a multicolor bomb in that color pair or are being passed particularly strong/synergistic cards in both colors.

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