The Leylines of Magic

To win a game of Magic, you need to delegate your resources, while also maintaining a strong presence on the battlefield. As a player, you need to realize when it is important to cast certain spells to either win the game, or get yourself out of various situations. Due to this effect, we are all very selective of the spells we choose to play, and sometimes certain types of spells become dead weight, since their mana cost is too high to cast early in the game.

However, there is a solution to this horrendous problem. The answer is simple, Leylines! Leylines are a group of nine, single color enchantment spells. That, when in your opening hand, can begin the game on the battlefield. They allow a player to start the game with a major advantage, and even help with early game set-up. Today, we dive into the waters that are Leylines, in order to see their true capability.


Leyline of Anticipation: Starting off, we have Leyline of Anticipation. Granting flash to creatures and sorceries can expand your options while playing by ten-fold. Your opponent will never be able to tell when you are going to cast that game changing sorcery from your hand and turn the tides of battle. If your opponent tries to attack, simply cast a creature down to block. Leyline of Anticipation has use throughout the entire game. It allows you to set up your board presence, knock down on your opponent’s own board (on their turn of course), then rinse and repeat on your next turn. Though it is limited to blue in most cases, Leyline of Anticipation can be a major game changer.

Leyline of Lifeforce: Playing with heavy creature set-up? Then Leyline of Lifeforce is the card for you. Protection from counter spells for your creatures is a handy gift, which can allow you to spam Hydras or Elves out of left field. Your opponent will surely be flooded and overwhelmed by the aggression of your deck. This can combo well with Rhonas’s Monument to give your creatures trample and +2/+2. Just be careful, because Leyline of Lifeforce can become dead weight during the late game if you already have a strong board presence. But, regardless, this Leyline can still be a strong force during the early and mid-game.

Leyline of Lighting: This Leyline is similar to one of the most iconic removal spells, Lightning Bolt, allowing you to deal bits of chip damage each time you cast a spell. If you have enough mana, you could end up obliterating your opponent’s entire field. This Leyline can also help with token management, allowing you to eliminate any squishy tokens with ease. Overall, Leyline of Lighting can be a great asset to any burn deck whilst it quickly racks up damage.

Leyline of Punishment: This double edge sword combos well with Leyline of Lighting, making it so players can’t stop the heat of your burn damage. Also, if you have large amounts of powerful beaters, Leyline of Punishment can almost guarantee that they get a big swing in. Not to mention that this Leyline can single-handedly stop any life gain decks in their tracks. So if you have been having trouble against any life gain decks, this is a nifty solution.

Leyline of Sanctity: This field of flowers will shield you from any targeted spells, which is great to have immediately from the start of the game. This allows you to evade a multitude of different burn spells and planeswalker abilities that would normally be a ruckus to handle. This is probably one of the best Leylines, as it has use throughout the entire game (from Modern to Legacy) and will allow for some easy victories; especially against decks that are burn and planeswalker heavy. It is particularly good against Storm and other combo decks as well.

Leyline of Singularity: Do you have opponents who constantly spam the same creature over and over, nonstop, just because it’s good? Are you having problems against token, and other mass aggro decks? Leyline of Singularity is the best solution! This enchantment causes all creatures to be legendary, which means only one of each creature can exist per battlefield. This will stop any token or mass aggro deck in its tracks. Just be sure to not be playing too many duplicates yourself, and remember that players can’t run any duplicates in Commander anyways (with only a few exceptions).

Leyline of Vitality: Leyline of Vitality is amazing in life gain decks that require a large amount of creature set up. When combo’ed with Bounteous Kirin, Soul Warden, or another life gain card, you can rack up a large amount of life quickly, allowing for stalling or a quick K.O. with a card like Aetherflux Reservoir. You can also utilize this Leyline with token creation decks to gain a life for each token that comes onto the battlefield.

Leyline of the Meek: Speaking of tokens, this card is perfect for anyone who’s playing a token based deck. There are some problems, however. Namely, it becomes dead weight if it doesn’t appear in your opening hand. Also, spells such as Honor of the Pure do this enchantment’s job better and for less mana. Overall, Leyline of the Meek is sometimes usable, but most of the time it could be replaced with a better spell.

Leyline of the Void: Lastly, we have Leyline of the Void. This card can combo well with a large portion of spells; including, but not limited to, Oona, Queen of the Fae, Bridge from Below, and Helm of Obedience. Leyline of the Void also shuts down a large portion of reanimation decks, allowing you to sweep over zombies with ease. This enchantment is probably another one of the best Leylines. It sees fairly regular play in Modern, Legacy, and Vintage, and is an important sideboard card and combo piece in a lot of decks.


All in all, most of the Leylines are great. They instantly come into the field and set up a quick board state that is difficult to remove during the beginning portion of the game. Leyline of the Meek is probably the worst of the bunch. But, each other Leyline has a niche that is difficult to fulfill with another spell. In all, Leylines are amazing cards to play in a variety of strategies. They can set up a strong board presence without any mana required, and allow you to easily win some games.

Have you ever tried out any Leylines? How did it go? Have you ever been in a situation where a Leyline has helped you tremendously? Be sure to leave a comment, suggestion, or concern down below!



Sylvan Studies Team

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