Table of Contents [search code]:
- Overview [OVR]
- History [HTR]
- Deckbuilding [DBD]
- Content: Creatures [CNC]
- Content: Spells [CNS]
- Content: Lands [CNL]
- Splashes [SPL]
- Deck Strategy [DSR]
- Matchup Synopsis [MSP]
- Successful Lists [SCL]
Tempered Steel is a type of aggro deck that relies on cheap artifact creatures combined with the namesake card, Tempered Steel, to push many low costing artifacts into the red zone effectively. Either white or white with a blue splash, this deck offers a blitz style of attack that can win the match very quickly.
Piloted by Sam Black as early back as Mirrodin Besieged, tempered steel was a deck that was off the radar of competitive play until the banning of Jace and Stoneforge, which greatly opened the format up. It is also known as Hawkward and has shown promise in a new standard despite losing Steel Overseer.
Tempered Steel lists often run from 14-20 artifact creatures, along with cards that can be animated into creatures. Removal is present in the deck and takes from 4-8 slots. The remaining slots go to spells or creatures that can increase the power of your army and about 21-23 lands and/or manafixing artifacts. The curve is focused on the 0-2 range, with a few powerful effects taking 3 or 4 mana to cast.
Content: Creatures [CNC]:
There are three key artifact creatures to add as 4 ofs to your list:
The remaining 2-8 spots are often given to one or two of these as a lower count:
On occassion, Glint Hawk or Leonin Relic-Warder will replace one of those.
To round out the creatures of the deck, Mikaeus, the Lunarch and Hero of Bladehold can be added for increasing the power of your army. Usually no more than 4 of these are seen altogether.
Content: Spells [CNS]:
There are several key spells to add to the deck, but the numbers vary, except for Tempered Steel, which is always a 4 of. These are the key spells:
Glint Hawk Idol
There are few more optional spells:
Shrine of Loyal Legions
Content: Lands [CNL]:
Other than manafixing lands, there is only one required land:
You may also want some:
Contested War Zone
You will almost always want to play the aggressor in this matchup as RDW will usually try and control the field with it's removal and GW township will try and hold out until a Creeping Corrosion sweeps you. However, each color (except blue) has a way to sweep you board, so sandbagging a few cards is almost always profitable. Watch out when using Dispatch with 3 or 4 artifacts, since Ancient Grudge easily turns off your metalcraft. Do not be afraid to run your pump spells in early rather than a few cheap drops then following it with the pump to kill the next turn.
Matchup Synopsis [MSP]:
I am actually not playing Tempered Steel at the moment, so any help with these would be nice.
Successful Lists [SCL]:
Tempered Steel by Greg Norris (6th in SCG Indianapolis Open)
Tempered Steel by Ari Lax (7th in SCG Indianapolis Open)