When drafting we should keep an eye out for the best cards. You should generally take the best cards in your color, you should generally pick your colors based on the best cards being passed to you, and you should keep in mind that the person you are drafting to will probably choose their cards in this way as well. You can often know what colors the person you are passing cards to is in based on the best cards you’re passing.
1. Serra Angel
Mind Control and Overrun weren’t brought back, which usually would make the top of the list. Now Serra Angel is the best non-rare left.
2. Vampire Nighthawk
Vampire Nighthawk is a 4-point swing, so it races just as well as Serra Angel for a couple less mana. However, I still like Serra Angel a little more because it’s big and has vigilance.
3. Arctic Aven
Arctic Aven can be great as long as you are playing white/blue. Lifelink can make it very difficult for an aggro deck to race you.
4. Volcanic Geyser
I’m glad that Fireball was taken out because it’s too easy to splash. Now red gets an X spell that other people won’t take. It’s not quite as good as Fireball, but it’s very close. Being an instant is important.
5. Oblivion Ring
Oblivion Ring is still the best removal. It takes care of just about any problem you can face.
Murder is the first black removal that stops any creature we’ve had since Arabian Nights. The two black mana makes this significantly worse than Go for the Throat, but it’s still better than Doom Blade.
7. Talrand’s Invocation
This is what replaced Air Elemental. I think Air Elemental might be a little better, but it’s still very good.
8. Garruk’s Packleader
Garruk’s Pack leader can be game-winning in the right deck, but it’s only mediocre if you don’t have the right cards for it.
9. Searing Spear
Searing Spear replaced Lighning Bolt and Incinerate. It’s not as good as either, so it’s a bit disappointing. I’d rather have a Sorcery-speed version of Lightning Bolt. I doubt this will be used in Standard, but it’s still quite good in draft.
10. Griffin Protector
Griffin Protector is a great flier — it is almost a 3/4 considering that you can build around it and keep casting creatures. Additionally, there are a lot of ways to make token creatures in this set.