MTG’s murder mystery set tips its hat to Sherlock Holmes

Jack Bye
MTG Sherlock-style cap

MTG Murders at Karlov Manor has players tracking down clues and vanquishing skulking foes, and thanks to this new Artifact card they can do so in style.

When it comes to the most iconic mystery characters of all time, Sherlock Holmes is right there at the pinnacle. Magic: The Gathering’s dip into the world of murder mysteries with Murders at Karlov Manor would have felt incomplete without at least a nod to the world’s greatest detective.

While some fans may have expected Universes Beyond alt treatments similar to Godzilla and Dracula, Murders at Karlov Manor instead opts to allude to Holmes through one of his most well-known pieces of gear.

Thinking Cap is MTG’s new Detective-focused Artifact

MTG Thinking Cap card

Thinking Cap is a new colorless Equipment Artifact with a mana value of 1 generic mana, modeled after Sherlock Holmes’ iconic Deerstalker hat. Recent adaptations of the world-famous detective, such as Sherlock and Elementary – have deployed the hat sparingly, if at all. But Magic: The Gathering’s designers seem to understand that this is a near-legendary piece of mystery iconography, and have immortalized it in card form.

As an Equipment card, Thinking Cap can be equipped to a Creature for a cost of 3 generic mana. This is a somewhat pricey equip cost for its ability, but much like Blackblade Reforged, this Artifact has an alternate equip cost exclusive to a specific Creature type.

Murders at Karlov Manor has debuted Detective as a Creature type and major focus of the set. Naturally, Thinking Cap synergizes beautifully with this Creature type and is intended to be primarily used by them as such. Detective Creatures can equip Thinking Cap for just 1 generic mana instead, granting a buff that is well worth the cost.

MTG fans put their Thinking Caps on

While Thinking Cap is an interesting new Artifact in its own right, MTG fans believe they have worked out its intended purpose, which is a win both flavor-wise and mechanically.

Reddit Commenter Imbolcnight had this to say in response to Thinking Cap’s reveal:

“Any 1/1 Detective can beat up a disguised creature with this. No wonder they’re all wearing hats.”

In granting a +1 to power and +2 to toughness, Thinking Cap allows Detectives to trade blows with Disguised creatures and survive. Creatures that are using Murders at Karlov Manor’s Disguise ability are face-down 2/2 creatures, and this Artifact puts a clash between them and a Detective squarely in the Detective’s favour.

With this buff, even the weakest Detectives in Magic can crack through Disguised creatures, allowing players to survive clashes and solve cases with ease. All thanks to Holmes’ famous hat.

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