Jump to



Drafting black green in Kamigawa Neon Dynasty can be tricky. Fear not, however, this edition of Archetype Analysis dives deep into the makeup of the deck, revealing all the details you will need to be successful in your next draft.

We start with an overview of the archetype before getting into a card by card breakdown of the crucial pieces. After that we discuss the different synergies at work in the archetype and how these can be exploited. Next we take a look at some powerful rares, traps to avoid and consider the merits of splashing. Finally we discuss some gameplay points before taking a look at some example decks. Let’s get into it.

Archetype Overview

Golgari Midrange or Golgari Good Stuff, as it’s often referred to, is one of the most powerful decks in the format. Lacking a single overarching theme, part of this deck's strength is its flexibility. Able to lean into a variety of micro synergies, a skilled Golgari drafter can maximize these ‘pockets of synergy’ by adjusting their pick order appropriately.

Black and green grant access to some rawly powerful cards including a fine selection of sagas. Whilst these cards offer great value for the mana spent, they are slow to fully resolve. As such, in order to benefit the most from these sagas, Golgari Midrange looks to play a long game. Aiming to ultimately overwhelm opponents with board presence and value engines, this deck rewards highly skilled players who are willing to grind their opponents out.

Raw Power Cards

Widely regarded to be the Mythic Uncommon of the set, Kappa Tech-Wrecker seemingly has it all. With deathtouch, it trades for anything and the 1/3 is an excellent blocker in the format. In addition to that, its ability to exile an artifact or enchantment (upon damaging the opponent) is powerful and easy to turn on using ninjutsu.

kappa-tech-wrecker MTG Card

Another excellent uncommon, Blossom Prancer, is a solid body with reach. The fact that it draws you a card (almost all the time) is incredible. As if that wasn’t enough, it even has a built-in safety valve that grants you four life on the rare times you whiff.

blossom-prancer MTG Card

Aside from these two, much of Golgari’s raw power comes from its sagas. The value that you get from these is excellent, the price to pay is waiting a few turns for all the chapters to resolve. All the common and uncommon sagas in this color pair are strong cards and therefore high picks.

If you are looking to play a long game, an early life buffer can be very helpful. Okiba Reckoner Raid can provide this, before spitting out a body. Given that this saga costs one mana for a 2/2, it represents excellent value.

okiba-reckoner-raid MTG Card nezumi-road-captian MTG Card

A very powerful saga, Life of Toshiro Umezawa can also provide life gain. Alternatively it can pick off one toughness creatures or enable attacks in the late game, making it a very flexible pick up.

life-of-toshiro-umezawa MTG Card memory-of-toshiro MTG Card

A little slower to get going, Boseiju Reaches Skyward is an absolute beast in the format. Drawing the extra lands is convenient, not only does it boost your mana but it enables the creature to grow. You will find that this body quickly gets out of hand.

boseiju-reaches-skyward MTG Card branch-of-boseiju MTG Card

Tales of Master Seshiro also offers a creature with keyword ‘large’. Whilst a delayed 5/5 for five mana might not seem like excellent value, it generally outclasses most other creatures in the format. Haste and vigilance are super relevant here whilst the +1/+1 counters can often enable attacks during a boardstall.

tales-of-master-seshiro MTG Card seshiro-s-living-legacy MTG Card

Synergy Packages

Golgari has several different synergy packages that it can choose to include or simply ignore. One such combo is the interaction between Geothermal Kami and Twisted Embrace. Whilst removal is less important in this format than in previous ones (such as Crimson Vow for instance) this interplay is particularly strong. Picking up Embrace with the Kami is basically busted. For four mana this puts a body on the ground, draws you a removal spell and gains you three life. Talk about value.

geothermal-kami MTG Card twisted-embrace MTG Card

Another powerful play is to combine Master’s Rebuke or Spinning Wheel Kick with a deathtouch creature, of which there are several in this color pair. This play allows you to kill any single threat with Rebuke, whilst the Wheel Kick can decimate an opponent's entire board. As with all bite spells it's safest to fire these off when your opponent is tapped out to avoid an instant speed blow out.

master-s-rebuke Unit MTG Card spinning-wheel-kick MTG Card

Whilst Golgari Midrange certainly isn’t an aggro deck, it would be remiss not to mention the synergy between ninjutsu and creatures with ETB effects. In particular Virus Beetle and Circuit mender make excellent targets to ‘pick up’ with ninjutsu as do most of the sagas.

virus-beetle MTG Card circuit-mender MTG Card

Another combination, which can be included at low opportunity cost, is the interaction between Season of Renewal and Colossal Skyturtle. By combining these two cards it’s possible to create a graveyard recursion engine.

season-of-renewal MTG Card colossal-skyturtle MTG Card

With the Skyturtle in your graveyard, Renewal allows you to rebuy it and one other card. Then, using the Turtle’s channel ability, you can return Renewal to your hand. Since each iteration of this loop nets you a card, it can become an overwhelming force in a long game. As both of these cards are desirable in their own right (Colossal Skyturtle can be played without blue mana as a simple regrowth) the cost of including this combo in your deck is low, given the game winning potential.

One further pocket of synergy, that Golgari can choose to exploit, is the artifacts and enchantments theme, usually found in black white. In particular Kami of Terrible Secrets and Roadside Reliquary can be very strong in this deck provided they are sufficiently supported. Finding enough enchantments here is rarely a problem, however, ensuring a high density of artifacts can be challenging. If your deck naturally has a higher number of artifact creatures such as Virus Beetle and Circuit Mender this will be easier to accomplish.

kami-of-terrible-secrets MTG Card roadside-reliquary MTG Card

Rares That Pull You In

Despite being a colorless card, Reckoner Bank Buster can pull you into Golgari. This artifact vehicle promises a huge amount of value to anyone who can drag the game out long enough to realize it. Since black green excels at playing a long game, this makes for a perfect pairing.

reckoner-bankbuster MTG Card

Tatsunari, Toad Rider is another great rare that, whilst strong in any color combination, will really excel in Golgari. Due to the high number of enchantments available here, it’s super easy to get the trigger and it also provides some finishing power in a board stall.

tatsunari-toad-rider MTG Card

Kami of Transience is another card that fits well in Golgari. Again, due to the high number of enchantments in this deck, it will trigger multiple times over the course of any game. In addition, its ability to recur from the graveyard gives even more value in a long game.

kami-of-transience MTG Card

Trap Cards

Fortunately in this color pair there are few cards that suck you into the archetype and then don’t deliver. There are however, some that merit discussion.

One card, which is powerful in other archetypes but underperforms here, is Dokuchi Silencer. There are two issues with this card in Golgari Midrange. The first is that, lacking an early aggressive game, it can be difficult to hit the opponent. Secondly, due to the large number of sagas in the deck, it’s much less likely that we have a creature card to discard upon doing so. Adding to this, the weakness of a 2/1 body in a long game, we can see why this card isn’t a good fit.

dokuchi-silencer MTG Card

In general in this archetype, cards that ramp but don’t fix, such as Orochi Merge-Keeper, are not especially useful. In general we prefer to spend the early turns of the game developing a board presence, so that it’s easier to cast the slower sagas on turns four and five. Since these sagas offer excellent value but aren't especially mana intensive there’s little need to ramp into them.

orochi-merge-keeper MTG Card


Golgari Midrange is well set up for splashing since it intends on going to the late game anyway. In addition, there’s no shortage of fixing available, with the best non-land options being Greater Tanuki and Commune with Spirits.

greater-tanuki MTG Card commune-with-spirits MTG Card

The great thing about Tanuki, is that it provides fixing whilst never being a dead card. If you draw it when fixing isn't required then a 6/5 trample is a fine alternative to a card that may otherwise rot in your hand. Commune is another option that has split utility. In the early game it can be used to fix your mana, whilst in the late game it can find you a powerful saga to cast.

The easiest color to splash is white. This is thanks to Sunblade Samurai which offers a plains cycling effect for just two mana. Blue is the color which we are most incentivized to splash, largely due to Colossal Skyturtle which we would often like to include anyway. Red is the least likely color to be splashed as many of its cards are aggressive and don’t really fit Golgari’s game plan.

sunblade-samurai MTG Card


As discussed, Golgari typically wants to play a defensive early game, cast powerful sagas in the mid game and then overwhelm the opponent with huge creatures and value engines later on.

As such, having relevant early plays is important. The best of these are the cheaper sagas which grant a creature as well as a life boost to prevent you from dying too soon. In addition to this, there are good defensive options such as Bamboo Grove Archer. Whilst not being able to attack is clearly a drawback, this matters less to a deck with a late game plan. The Archer also remains a relevant top deck later on, thanks to its channel ability.

bamboo-grove-archer MTG Card

Once the board has stabilized, you can run out your more expensive sagas. After giving these time to resolve, your side of the battlefield will be stacked with large creatures. At this point you can begin to pressure your opponent, if sensible, or simply wait whilst the battlefield fills out further. While winning with a flashy rare is always fun, an 8/8 Branch of Boseiju will usually do the trick against opponents with a weaker board. It is however, the constant two for ones and slow accumulation of value that will pull you ahead in the more grindy games.

Example Deck 1

In this example the deck leans heavily on two different synergy packages. The first is the artifact and enchantment theme. With three copies of Kami of Terrible Secrets and a Roadside Reliquary, the drafter is well rewarded for balancing their artifact and enchantment count. In addition, with a handful of deathtouch creatures, the deck makes good use of both Master’s Rebuke and Spinning Wheel Kick.

golgari-example-1 MTG Deck Pic

Example Deck 2

This example leans heavily into the enchantment theme. Splashing blue for double Skyturtle, it also contains a Twisted Embrace / Geothermal Kami package. Commune with Spirits is excellent in this deck, helping with fixing but also able to grab several of the biggest threats. Circuit Mender sticks out as the lone artifact but such a strong card should almost never be cut. A single copy of Season of Renewal makes looping with Skyturtle a real possibility providing a card draw engine for the longer games.

golgari-example-2 MTG Deck Pic
mono-red pic dimir-ninjas pic spirited-companion Gravelighter Kaito The Wanderer Atushi the Blazing Sky