Murders at Karlov Manor (MKM) for Traditional Cube

Spoiler Season is done for MKM, let's rock.

Normally I do some long winded exposition, but I don't know if people even care. So let's get straight to the point.

The List

 Archdruid's Charm might be the best card from the set for cube. The GGG mana cost is rough to overcome, but this card is never bad ever once you cast it. Though it reads as having 3 options, you really have 5 choices to pick from with each option generally being a 2 to 3 mana option already. Regardless of the mode you are picking, you are generating card advantage either in the form of negative advantage for your opponent or positive for you. The land fetching part of the card is special as well as there are not a lot of cards that can grab you any land from your deck and put it into play, let alone allow you to ramp with it. Relooking at the casting cost, GGG is tough, but you're in green. You have access to the most efficient forms of ramp and colorfixing, you'll be fine. Worth testing and curious to see if the card's clunky.

Kaya, Spirits' Justice is interesting. She adds a different dimension to Orzhov decks merging the relationship between tokens and graveyard decks together. At the baseline, she can spawn a flying spirit token every turn. This has traditionally been good and I don't see why it wouldn't be in this case since the tokens are flying. If you need to remove creatures or dig through your deck, she is able to facilitate both. She won't shake any boundaries, but she does serve as a decent alternative to the Orzhov Sorins.

Intrude on the Mind is a card I feel is on the cusp of feeling bad or amazing. The big drawback is that it cost 5 mana, which is the point at which games are heading towards the end. On the upside, you are getting an insane amount of value for instant speed. The additional value of always getting a creature is huge since you have cards to back it up. The card is alway appreciated at any point in the game and drawing it can shift the tides or accelerate your win. There's also not a lot of versatile finishers at 5 mana, which only helps this card stand out.

Surveil Land Cycle is worth testing in your cube since it brings unexplored depth to cube. We have been getting spoiled with lands that have basic land type, but it's still not enough. Having land types is huge as it opens up the cards to being fetchable with fetchlands and other similar effects like landcycling. This means any land that does have land types is worth looking at. On initial glance, this bears a strong resemblance to the Temples from original Theros with land types and a switch to surveil. If you do run those lands, this cycle seems like a strict upgrade with surveiling being able to also fill your graveyard. If considering these lands, they would benefit slower decks that can take their time or decks that want to fill their graveyard.

Case of the Stashed Skeleton is a card that gets better the more I think about it. At baseline, you get a 2/1 Skeleton with menace that you can use to push damage or as sacrifice fodder. This would be negligible when compared to the rest of the field if it didn't have the Demonic Tutor function attached when the case is solved. Generally, conditional abilities/functions are bad in cube because they require specific interactions to enable them. With this one however, you only need the skeleton to be gone in a color that excels at death. The most obvious way to get rid of the skeletons is to the countless number of sacrifice outlets like Woe Strider. Even without these, you can opt to just keep swinging. It only has 1 toughness and your opponent can't keep taking damage if they want to win. As a whole package, it sets the card up to excel in aggressive and midrange shells, both of which are comfortably in the domain of an black section.

Cryptic Cloak seems like a card that would be amazing in years past. It's gimmicky and weird, which I like as it treads on the line of being potentially strong, but also not good. Cryptic Cloak, although an equipment, should be treated as a creature card. Since it takes the top card of your deck and plays it directly to the battlefield, you are essentially drawing a card each time you are playing the cloak. Regardless of what the facedown card is, it is still an unblockable 3/2  with ward 2 at minimum and needs to be answered. Lastly, the card can be used as a mana sink by bouncing the cloak and replaying as much as you allow yourself to do so. This will flood the board with face down creatures and accelerate your win. This might not sound like the best card, but I'm positive it will play well.

Ill timed Explosion reminds me of what they have been trying to do with the recent 4 mana wraths that white have been getting: board wipe + some form of card draw. Unlike those, this one warrants serious consideration when put into the context of its colors. Red has a fairly strong share of playable boardwipes, but they are limited to smaller creatures. On the hand, blue is severely lacking strong board wipes in addition to lacking strong removal. It often gets it removal from other colors, which fits this card. Ill Timed Explosion can be a versatile tool in your Izzet deck as there's never a bad time to play the card, although it can be clunky when used as a draw spell.  The big concern around the card is the semi random nature of how much damage it does since it is dependent on your hand. This inconsistency scares people away from using it, but the other benefits have me thinking the card might be worth trying out if you want to afford the slot.

Headliner Scarlett had me taking multiple reads before I finally understood why there was some hype around her. She's functionally Hellrider but better. Being able to prevent your opponent from blocking is a death sentence and surprisingly it's an effect that isn't commonly found in cube. Most other iterations are just not good enough. In addition to having all this, she can start exiling cards to push the game to its end. Strong 4 drop finisher, I expect many sudden endings for the following years.

Novice Inspector is another Thraben Inspector but slightly worse since it is a detective versus being a soldier. Thraben is still good, this card is still good. Run if you want a second one.

Carnage Interpreter definitely peaked my interest when he was spoiled. A lot of power and versatility for such a small cost in colors that can take advantage of everything he offers. Being a hybrid cost card, easily allows him to fit into decks using black or red, increasing the chances of the card seeing more play in a variety of decks. He is also essentially a 5/5 with Menace when you have 1 or no cards in hard, perfect for the later stages of the game. That body and evasion are the setup to the game ending soon. Fortunately even if you are struggling with maintaining a small hand, it discards your hand and nets you 4 clue tokens on entry. At minimum, you can use the clues to refill your hand, but they also synergize with strategies like artifacts and Braids (either of the black ones). Rakdos is a more competitive gold slot, but it can definitely find a home there.

The End Step

As a whole with everything included, it's pretty awful for cube. This mostly due to the draft environment focused on clues and disguise/morph, both of which are slow mechanics. I wouldn't be surprised if most players save their money and opt out of this set. What is slightly more exciting is the clue set coming out with its own set of rules. I'm interested in at least trying the game mode once. Can it be a cube? Maybe as long as its worth repeating. Other than that, I'm hoping the draft format is fun. 

Yes, I intentionally place Thraben Inspector where I did

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