Set Prospective

Jumpstart 2022

January 26th, 2023 — Anthony Mattox

This article is part of our community-sourced Set Prospective series. We survey Cube designers before the set’s official release to document their first impressions of new cards.

While Jumpstart 2022 didn’t make a big splash in the Magic community at large, or even among Cube designers, every new set expands the palette available to Cube designers. J22 is no exception. With a substantial 51 brand new cards, and staggering list of over 700 reprints, this little may yet have a lot to offer.

Like the original Jumpstart, the 2022 edition is comprised of thematically constructed “packets” built around themes ranging from the flavorful to the mechanical. New cards fill in gaps or offer powerful, clear build-arounds. For cubes that support any of the 46 unique themes, the set is likely to have some gems.


We surveyed the Cube design community and received 46 responses from Cube designers giving new cards from Jumpstart a try. Designers are testing a median of 3 cards, with one designer testing 16 new cards. Cards received an average rating just below 5.5 out of 10.


Filter by rarity:
Card TestersRank 
Ardoz, Cobbler of War30.4%5.0
Distinguished Conjurer17.4%5.8
Creeping Bloodsucker15.2%5.2
Preston, the Vanisher15.2%6.0
Benevolent Hydra15.2%5.6
Conductor of Cacophony13.0%4.3
Kibo, Uktabi Prince10.9%5.3
Mild-Mannered Librarian10.9%6.0
Soul Read10.9%3.7
Angelic Cub10.9%5.5
Merfolk Pupil10.9%4.2
Planar Atlas10.9%5.7
Primeval Herald10.9%5.0
Ogre Battlecaster10.9%5.0
Alandra, Sky Dreamer8.7%6.7
Launch Mishap8.7%4.9
Biblioplex Kraken8.7%4.9
Lita, Mechanical Engineer8.7%3.6
Rodolf Duskbringer8.7%8.1
Cards being tested by fewer than 4 respondents not shown.
Benevolent Hydra
Preston, the Vanisher
Creeping Bloodsucker
Distinguished Conjurer
Ardoz, Cobbler of War

Ardoz, Cobbler of War stands ahead of the pack with 30% of respondents trying it in their Cubes. It’s a unique aggressive threat, with late game relevance and many opportunities to interact with other mechanics, including haste and sacrifice or goblins.

“Jumpstart 22 did a lot to offer interesting upgrades to preexisting key pieces that are simpler to include.”

Many of the top cards including Distinguished Conjurer and Preston, the Vanisher come from the blink theme, a frequent favorite supported in all manner of cubes. These cards are perfect signposts, but many of them also play into multiple mechanical spaces intended to create interactions when mixed with other packs. Benevolent Hydra and Creeping Bloodsucker round out the top five supporting two more popular mechanics, +1/+1 counters and lifegain.

While the response to Jumpstart 2022 was lackluster, I wouldn’t be surprised to see many of its cards re-emerge as role players in Cubes. It’s east to miss cards when they aren’t being opened in packs in limited or evaluated in the context of competitive play. The set also came out amid a deluge of new sets. But I expect players looking to bolster specific mechanics in the future will find many of these new cards in their Scryfall searches, and it may be worth taking a closer look if you passed the set over.

More Resources for Jumpstart 2022

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Benevolent Hydra — Eric Deschamps