Online Tech's deck-o-pedia

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The decks in this thread are decks without Time Spiral (and later sets), so this thread is more of an archive of old decks. You are referred to the new Online Tech's deck-o-pedia for post-Time Spiral decks.

This thread is designed as an easy, quick-reference guide to decks from all online formats that are covered in my Online Tech column. The entries simply provide a brief overview of the deck, a sample decklist, and sometimes some extra information. These are not intended to be full, in-depth primers. They are merely used so that I can link to them in my column. The goal is to make every deck that I cover in my column into a hyperlink to the corresponding post in this thread. Doing this allows readers to view a short description of an unfamiliar deck when they read my column. Plus, anyone else can read this thread to learn more about the popular decks.

Any questions or comments, please PM me.

Index:

STANDARD:
8 Stone Rain deck
Battle of Wits
Boros Deck Wins
Black Blue Winterbalance
Counterbalance Ideal
Dark Boros
Dutch Simic Aggro
French UW Weenie
[URL="http://boards1.wizards.com/showpost.php?p=9984929
&postcount=27"]GBr Aggro[/url]
GhaziGlare
Ghost Dad
Ghost Husk
Gruul Aggro
Hand in Hand
Heartbeat combo
Izzetron
KarstenBotBabyKiller
Magnivore
Mono Green Aggro
Ninja Erayo
Ninja Pile
Reanimator
Satanic Sligh
Sea Stompy
Simic Graft Aggro
Snakes
Snow White
Solar Flare
Structure & Force
Tyrant Top Urzatron
UGw Beats
Zoo

EXTENDED:
Affinity
Aggro Loam
Aggro Rock
Blue-Black Psychatog
Blue-White Tron
Boros Deck Wins
Flow Rock
Gifts Rock
Izzetron
Mono Green Aggro
Red-Green Beats

TRIBAL WARS - STANDARD:
Elves
Humans
Wizards

STANDARD WITH VANGUARD:
Rumbling Slum Zoo
Chronatog Free Stuff
Momir Vig, Simic Visionary Dredge

CLASSIC:
Scepter-Chant
Vial Affinity
Format: STANDARD

Decklist:

Solar Flare first became popular on Magic Online. Paul Cheon caught up and won US Nationals 2006 (late July) with the deck and truly put it on the map. On first sight, you might want to classify this deck as an average blue control deck, but it’s not. It doesn’t even play any countermagic besides the Remands! Solar Flare is more of a “hybrid good stuff” deck that just brings the highest card quality to the table. It takes the concept of card advantage to a new level, since almost every single card in the deck provides card advantage of some kind, from Wrath of God to Persecute. The game plan of Solar Flare is to keep opposing threats off the board and then drop a big win condition as quickly as possible. It can accelerate into a turn 4-5 Angel of Despair via Signets or by using the degenerate Compulsive Research plus Zombify draw. The sideboard has cards that allow you to tune the flavor of the deck to your liking: against aggressive decks, more anti-creature cards come in the form of Condemn and Descendant of Kiyomaro. Cranial Extraction and discard come in to tweak the numbers against opposing control strategies or combo decks, just as the situation calls for.

Solar Flare is pretty good against aggro decks. You can lose to a very fast draw that is followed up by a flurry of burn spells, but usually the anti-creature suite should handle it. To deal with the burn spells, you can rely on Persecute red. Against very slow mid-range creature decks that are not fast enough, Solar Flare excels. The other side of the coin is that Solar Flare has trouble against control or combo decks. You need a good draw in game 1. Game 2 becomes better when you can replace useless creature removal with discard, but you’re still not happy to face off against control or combo.

Juomaru (Thirawat Chaovarindr from Thailand) made top 8 at the MTGO World Championships qualifier and said the following:
"I always play this deck online and I think it has less bad matchups than other decks. My most-feared matchup was Heartbeat, that's why I play Cranial Extraction main. GhaziGlare, Gruul beats, and Enduring Ideal is an easy matchup. I'd like to thank Frank Karsten for telling me to add Night of Soul's Betrayal to the main deck, and to Paososo99 and Papayapokpok because they shared their knowledge with me."
Format: STANDARD

Decklist:

Hand in Hand is an aggressive deck, but not a particularly fast one. Instead of focusing on hitting a 1 drop and a 2 drop every time and winning the game as quickly as possible, this deck has more of a mid-range strategy. It simply plays the best Orzhov drops at every mana slot, from Isamaru, Hound of Konda on turn 1, to Ghost Council of Orzhova on turn 4. It also runs eight creatures with protection from black (Hand of Honor and Paladin en-Vec), which can give certain decks headaches. In fact, a Paladin en-Vec carrying an Umezawa’s Jitte is one of the hardest-to-deal-with-threats in the format. The deck doesn’t do anything exiting, but it simply has a solid game against everything and has late game staying power. This archetype can be tuned to your liking and no two Hand in Hand decks will be the same. The above list is tuned against aggro decks, as is evident from the maindeck Descendant of Kiyomaro and Shining Shoal. Burn doesn’t really worry this Hand in Hand variant. Other Hand in Hand versions can differ from the above one by playing maindeck Castigate, Azorius Guildmage instead of Eight-and-a-Half-Tails, or Phyrexian Arena against control. Besides those tweaks, there are many more valid options in black and white and you can really tune this deck into any angle you want.

Orzhov decks have been a mainstay since Guildpact hit the shelves, in many different forms. For a while, the more exotic and fancy variants were more popular, particularly Ghost Dad (featuring the interaction between Tallowisp, Thief of Hope, and Arcane/Spirit cards) or Ghost Husk (featuring the interaction between Nantuko Husk, Promise of Bunrei, and Orzhov Pontiff). All of them had something in common: they ran Godless Shrine, Ghost Council of Orzhova, Mortify, and Dark Confidant. It appears that when you start a deck with these powerful cards, you’ll end up with a good build no matter what. This deck abandons the fancy tricks and eye-catchers for solid efficient cards.
Format: STANDARD

Decklist:
Show

By johan80, August 2006

1 [CARD]Boseiju, Who Shelters All[/CARD]
7 [CARD]Island[/CARD]
1 [CARD]Izzet Boilerworks[/CARD]
1 [CARD]Minamo, School at Water’s Edge[/CARD]
5 [CARD]Mountain[/CARD]
1 [CARD]Oboro, Palace in the Clouds[/CARD]
4 [CARD]Shivan Reef[/CARD]
4 [CARD]Steam Vents[/CARD]

2 [CARD]Boomerang[/CARD]
4 [CARD]Compulsive Research[/CARD]
3 [CARD]Eye of Nowhere[/CARD]
3 [CARD]Mana Leak[/CARD]
3 [CARD]Remand[/CARD]
4 [CARD]Sleight of Hand[/CARD]
2 [CARD]Tidings[/CARD]
1 [CARD]Demolish[/CARD]
2 [CARD]Pyroclasm[/CARD]
4 [CARD]Stone Rain[/CARD]
2 [CARD]Sowing Salt[/CARD]
3 [CARD]Wildfire[/CARD]

3 [CARD]Magnivore[/CARD]

SIDEBOARD
4 [CARD]Volcanic Hammer[/CARD]
1 [CARD]Keiga, the Tide Star[/CARD]
1 [CARD]Mana Leak[/CARD]
1 [CARD]Remand[/CARD]
4 [CARD]Repeal[/CARD]
2 [CARD]Pyroclasm[/CARD]
1 [CARD]Sowing Salt[/CARD]
1 [CARD]Boseiju, Who Shelters All[/CARD]


This is a land destruction deck that tries to keep the opponent low on lands, thereby keeping him from casting any spells. The ideal draw starts with Boomerang or Eye of Nowhere on turn 2 (not technically land destruction, but it definitely gets a land off the table, which is good for tempo), followed up with a Stone Rain on turn 3. On subsequent turns, some more land will likely be destroyed, perhaps some card draw to reload, and some countermagic to make sure the opponent will be able to resolve anything noteworthy. A turn 6 Wildfire clears the board, after which a Magnivore the size of a Polar Kraken – the deck plays that many sorceries - comes down to end it all. Playing first, Magivore is a monster and can simply get the “I win” draw that I just described. But even if that perfect draw doesn’t show up, Magnivore can play a good game and the high amount of card drawing will make sure the land destruction will keep on flowing.

The good news is that Magnivore has a pretty good matchup against basically any control decks with fragile mana bases. Without lands, those decks cannot cast their mana-intensive win conditions, nor can they win a counterwar. The sideboard of the above list is pretty much dedicated to beating aggro decks, since the deck has a pretty hard time doing so game 1. Magnivore has problems against quick creatures. It has a feather-light removal suite in Pyroclasm and Wildfire, which is usually not good enough. Imagine when your opponent starts off with an Isamaru, Hound of Konda plus a Hand of Honor and then you start playing a Stone Rain while he flings a Char in your face. You can imagine who wins that one. So that’s where the Volcanic Hammers, Pyroclasms, and Repeals from the sideboard are for.
Format: STANDARD

Decklist:
Show

By SystemFailure, August 2006

5 [CARD]Forest[/CARD]
3 [CARD]Island[/CARD]
1 [CARD]Novijen, Heart of Progress[/CARD]
1 [CARD]Okina, Temple to the Grandfathers[/CARD]
4 [CARD]Breeding Pool[/CARD]
4 [CARD]Simic Growth Chamber[/CARD]
4 [CARD]Yavimaya Coast[/CARD]

4 [CARD]Sakura Tribe-Scout[/CARD]
4 [CARD]Sakura-Tribe Elder[/CARD]
4 [CARD]Coiling Oracle[/CARD]
3 [CARD]Patagia Viper[/CARD]
3 [CARD]Ohran Viper[/CARD]
2 [CARD]Seshiro the Anoited[/CARD]

3 [CARD]Mana Leak[/CARD]
3 [CARD]Remand[/CARD]
4 [CARD]Sosuke’s Sumons[/CARD]
3 [CARD]Coat of Arms[/CARD]
2 [CARD]Chord of Calling[/CARD]
3 [CARD]Umezawa’s Jitte[/CARD]
SIDEBOARD
3 [CARD]Pithing Needle[/CARD]
3 [CARD]Threads of Disloyalty[/CARD]
4 [CARD]Giant Solifuge[/CARD]
3 [CARD]Spell Snare[/CARD]
2 [CARD]Ghost Quarter[/CARD]


This deck plays the best snake theme cards and uses them to their fullest extent. It starts with mana acceleration in the early turns with Sakura-Tribe Scout, Sakura-Tribe Elder, and Coiling Oracle, all snakes of course. Then Sosuke’s Summons (which never stays in the graveyard for long, I might add) and Patagia Viper make an army of snake tokens, after which Seshiro the Anoited (sometimes fetched via Chord of Calling) or Coat of Arms come down to turn those tiny little 1-power Snakes into big threatening monsters. The deck is very synergistic and never runs out of snakes, due to the card advantage provided by Sosuke’s Summons and Ohran Viper. It also runs some permission spells to make sure the snakes are kept alive and slithering.
The deck looks "just" fun and casual, but it turned out to be very, very good because it has broken draws that can’t be beat and because it rarely loses to any aggro deck. It also does very well against Wildfire decks because of Coat of Arms and the card advantage of Sosuke’s Summons. Snakes can get broken draws for sure. Snakes is also very good against Solar Flare.
Right before Coldsnap became legal, Snakes saw a rise in popularity. The deck got a huge boost from arguably the best card in Coldsnap, which also happens to be a perfect fit for this deck: Ohran Viper. Ophidian had always been a format defining card and Ohran Viper is better. Much better, actually, since it’s a snake as well.
Format: STANDARD

Heartbeat is the best combo deck in Standard. It uses Sakura-Tribe Elder and Kodama’s Reach to build up to a high land count quickly. In the meantime, it searches for combo pieces with Sensei’s Divining Top and transmute cards. The deck usually tries to go off around turn 5-6 or so, starting with a Heartbeat of Spring and then using multiple Early Harvest (and Drift of Phantasms that can magically exchange for more Early Harvests) to build up to an overflowing mana pool, ending the game with a lethal Maga, Traitor to Mortals. Weird Harvest gets the entire combo in one pinch, since Drift of Phantasms go for Early Harvest which will net you a lot of mana. A simple counterspell won’t stop the combo that easily, since this deck can fight back with Remand, Spell Snare, and Muddle the Mixture of its own.

Heartbeat combo is incredibly difficult to play optimally. It does not find success in just anyone's hands and it takes a lot of practice to play the deck well.

Decklist 1:

.Draft Paradise chimed in and told me the following:
"I chose Heartbeat because it seems to be the best deck in terms of ruff power. Secondly, it has a lot of great matchups against most of the aggros which dominate the format. I was looking for UB/UWB counterbalance decks to be the most difficult matchups, fortunately, the deck seemed very little played; though I knew UG aggro would be a hard one as none of my MD or SB plans work well against it, in the end I eventually lost to it. The easiest matchup is probably GhaziGlare.
I came second in the MtGO Worlds Qualifier. I felt like I did my best but I'm really disappointed losing again one step from victory. I finished 9th in GP toulouse and lost my rating-based-qualification a week ago when trying to ensure it in an PTQ here in france. Ouch! Well, congratulations to Felix for winning the whole thing which is a great accomplishment."

Thanks Jeremy. Still, second out of the thousands who've entered events to make the tourney is commendable.

Decklist 2:
Show
[deck=AMMP (Aik Marco Makinen Petersen), 3rd/4th place World Championships Qualifier, October 2006]

12* Forest
8* Island
2* Mountain
4* Sensei's Divining Top
4* Spell Snare
4* Sakura-Tribe Elder
1* Pyroclasm
4* Muddle the Mixture
4* Heartbeat of Spring
4* Kodama's Reach
4* Drift of Phantasms
4* Early Harvest
1* Indrik Stomphowler
1* Demonfire
2* Weird Harvest
1* Invoke the Firemind
SIDEBOARD
1* Swamp
1* Dizzy Spell
1* Gigadrowse
1* Naturalize
1* Recollect
1* Viridian Shaman
3* Carven Caryatid
1* Research/Development
1* Savage Twister
1* Maga, Traitor to Mortals
3* Crime/Punishment[/deck]


AMMP chimed in and told me the following:
"I chose this deck because it's the only deck in the format that can largely ignore Umezawa's Jitte. It also doesn't have any auto-loss matchups, except for Dutch Simic Aggro with Ninja of the Deep Hours, but very few play that. Solar flare, glare, snakes are among the best matchups.
Demonfire is the best kill card in the deck and the random indrik stomphowler in the main is awesome too (i added it 5 mintues before start after moving my 2nd mass removal to the sb); I beat Enduring Ideal with it. Oh, I actually told wefald to play Yamabushi's Flame in his Satanic Sligh deck he won Norwegian Nationals with."
Format: STANDARD

Decklist:

Take 21 creatures (ironically, all them 2-power), 21 lands, 18 spells (including as many as 15 straight burn spells), put them all in a stew, mesh together, cook for a while, and voila, you have made yourself a Boros Deck Wins. People will always turn up with Red decks and try and burn you out. The deck is highly aggressive and consistent, starting with a 2-power creature on turn one, then another 2-power creature on turn two, and one or two more guys on turn three. Then the Boros player tries to keep the initiative and attacks his opponent down to a low life total, clearing the path with burn spells. After the opponent is down to ten life or less this deck will just throw some burn spells in the face to end it once and for all. It is also the simplest deck; even if you play badly, you can still win with a good draw. Slow decks that take time to take control will usually die to all the highly efficient burn spells.
The strength of this deck is its consistency and straight forward game plan: quick creatures and burn. The weakness of this deck is that life gain is hard to beat. It won’t beat a deck with Faith’s Fetters and Loxodon Hierarch. It also prefers to avoid Descendant of Kiyomaro, Umezawa’s Jitte, and Shining Shoal.
Format: STANDARD

Decklist:
Show

Mitamura Kazuya, played @ Japanese Nationals August 2006

4 [CARD]Steam Vents[/CARD]
4 [CARD]Shivan Reef[/CARD]
4 [CARD]Urza's Tower[/CARD]
4 [CARD]Urza's Mine[/CARD]
4 [CARD]Urza's Power Plant[/CARD]
1 [CARD]Snow-Covered Island[/CARD]
1 [CARD]Minamo, School at Water's Edge[/CARD]
1 [CARD]Miren, the Moaning Well[/CARD]

4 [CARD]Keiga, the Tide Star[/CARD]
1 [CARD]Meloku the Clouded Mirror[/CARD]

4 [CARD]Mana Leak[/CARD]
4 [CARD]Remand[/CARD]
4 [CARD]Electrolyze[/CARD]
4 [CARD]Compulsive Research[/CARD]
2 [CARD]Tidings[/CARD]
3 [CARD]Wildfire[/CARD]
3 [CARD]Repeal[/CARD]
2 [CARD]Demonfire[/CARD]
4 [CARD]Izzet Signet[/CARD]
2 [CARD]Simic Signet[/CARD]

SIDEBOARD:
4 [CARD]Annex[/CARD]
3 [CARD]Spell Snare[/CARD]
2 [CARD]Govern the Guildless[/CARD]
3 [CARD]Pithing Needle[/CARD]
2 [CARD]Pyroclasm[/CARD]
1 [CARD]Meloku the Clouded Mirror[/CARD]


The goal is to assemble the Urzatron: one Urza’s Tower, one Urza’s Mine and one Urza’s Power Plant. Compulsive Research, Remand, Tidings, Repeal, and Electrolyze draw cards so that you get closer to all the Tron pieces. Once the Tron is in place, you can use all that colorless mana by playing Keiga, the Tide Star or a huge Demonfire. Keiga also survives Wildfire, which is the board sweeper of this deck. Ideally, this deck keeps one of each Tron piece along with a couple Signets after a Wildfire, while the opponent is left helpless.

The deck is an all-round good choice. There aren’t really any bad matchups but then again, the deck doesn’t have any really good matchups either.
Format: STANDARD

Decklist:
Show

By Iluminatti, August 2006

6 [CARD]Forest[/CARD]
2 [CARD]Island[/CARD]
1 [CARD]Minamo, School at Water's Edge[/CARD]
1 [CARD]Miren, the Moaning Well[/CARD]
1 [CARD]Oboro, Palace in the Clouds[/CARD]
1 [CARD]Okina, Temple to the Grandfathers[/CARD]
4 [CARD]Yavimaya Coast[/CARD]
4 [CARD]Breeding Pool[/CARD]
3 [CARD]Simic Growth Chamber[/CARD]

2 [CARD]Kodama of the North Tree[/CARD]
4 [CARD]Llanowar Elves[/CARD]
2 [CARD]Birds of Paradise [/CARD]
2 [CARD]Meloku the Clouded Mirror[/CARD]
4 [CARD]Vinelasher Kudzu[/CARD]
4 [CARD]Cytoplast Root-Kin[/CARD]
4 [CARD]Plaxcaster Frogling[/CARD]
3 [CARD]Trygon Predator[/CARD]

4 [CARD]Mana Leak[/CARD]
4 [CARD]Remand[/CARD]
4 [CARD]Umezawa's Jitte[/CARD]

SIDEBOARD:
2 [CARD]Iwamori of the Open Fist[/CARD]
2 [CARD]Mimeofacture[/CARD]
2 [CARD]Naturalize[/CARD]
3 [CARD]Repeal[/CARD]
3 [CARD]Threads of Disloyalty[/CARD]
3 [CARD]Spell Snare[/CARD]


The idea of this deck is to combine cheap threats with counters and it also has a graft theme interwoven. A typical start is turn 1 Llanowar Elves, turn 2 Plaxcaster Frogling, turn 3 Cytoplast Root-Kin. That’s two 4/4 guys on turn three and those fast openings are backed up with eight tempo counters – Mana Leak and Remand. Vinelasher Kudzu combines well with the graft guys and the deck also has a decent long game with Umezawa’s Jitte and 5-mana legends. But most of all, the deck just tries to overwhelm the opponent with fat guys as quickly as possible and holds on to the initiative via its countermagic. The Spell Snares in the sideboard give the deck the power to emerge victoriously out of counterwars. The rest of the sideboard consists of good cards against aggro in Iwamori of the Open Fist and Threads of Disloyalty, and all-round answers in Naturalize and Repeal. The Mimeofactures might appear a bit strange, but it can be used in many versatile ways, for example as removal on an Angel of Despair or an opposing Umezawa’s Jitte.
Format: STANDARD

Decklist:

This deck is a cross-over between straight Gruul aggro and straight Simic aggro, combining the best of both worlds. The deck name comes from combining blue counters (Sea) with green creatures (Stompy). It can come out fast with the best 1-drop around, Kird Ape, or accelerate into a quick turn two Trygon Predator or Ohran Viper with Birds of Paradise or Llanowar Elves. Attacking with a Birds on turn 2 that transforms into a Ninja of the Deep Hours is also a nice surprise. Sea Stompy rapidly gets five power worth of creatures on the table by turn 3, after which the permission package of 4 Mana Leak and 4 Remand kicks in. They just stop the opponent's big and powerful spells until you deal the last few points of damage.

Against control decks, you can just put out one or two creatures, keep on attacking, draw cards with Ohran Viper or Ninja of the Deep Hours while you're at it, and have counter back up for Wrath of God. It’s a very easy gameplan, but it works. A weakness of the deck is the inconsistent mana base; a three color aggro deck needs a little luck to draw all the colors, although Birds of Paradise can come to the rescue.
Format: STANDARD

Decklist:
Show

Timo Pfeiffer, winner of German JSS Nationals August 2006.

1 [CARD]Skragg, the Rage Pits[/CARD]
4 [CARD]Karplusan Forest[/CARD]
4 [CARD]Stomping Ground[/CARD]
7 [CARD]Forest[/CARD]
6 [CARD]Mountain[/CARD]

4 [CARD]Llanowar Elves[/CARD]
4 [CARD]Kird Ape[/CARD]
4 [CARD]Burning-Tree Shaman[/CARD]
4 [CARD]Silhana Ledgewalker[/CARD]
2 [CARD]Giant Solifuge[/CARD]
4 [CARD]Scab-Clan Mauler[/CARD]

4 [CARD]Moldervine Cloak[/CARD]
4 [CARD]Volcanic Hammer[/CARD]
4 [CARD]Umezawa’s Jitte[/CARD]
4 [CARD]Char[/CARD]

SIDEBOARD:
4 [CARD]Tin Street Hooligan[/CARD]
2 [CARD]Naturalize[/CARD]
4 [CARD]Gather Courage[/CARD]
1 [CARD]Giant Solifuge[/CARD]
4 [CARD]Blood Moon[/CARD]


Gruul aggro is not a new concept, because it has been around since PT Honolulu 2006, where Mark Herberholz took the title with it. People will always turn up with Red decks and try and burn you out. The deck is highly aggressive and consistent, starting with big green monsters early on and then the Gruul players tries to keep the initiative and attacks his opponent down to a low life total, clearing the path with burn spells. After the opponent is down to ten life or less this deck will just throw some burn spells in the face to end it once and for all. This particular version also runs Silhana Ledgewalker and Moldervine Cloak, a deadly combo. Slow decks that take time to take control will usually die to all the highly efficient burn spells.
The strength of this deck is its consistency and straight forward game plan: quick creatures and burn. The weakness of this deck is that life gain is hard to beat. It won’t beat a deck with Faith’s Fetters and Loxodon Hierarch. It also prefers to avoid Descendant of Kiyomaro, Umezawa’s Jitte, and Shining Shoal.
Format: STANDARD

Decklist:

Show

Shingou Kurihara, Top 8 @ Japanese Nationals August 2006

4 [CARD]Breeding Pool[/CARD]
3 [CARD]Forest[/CARD]
5 [CARD]Island[/CARD]
1 [CARD]Minamo, School at Water's Edge[/CARD]
1 [CARD]Okina, Temple to the Grandfathers[/CARD]
4 [CARD]Yavimaya Coast[/CARD]

4 [CARD]Ornithopter[/CARD]
4 [CARD]Birds of Paradise[/CARD]
4 [CARD]Erayo, Soratami Ascendant[/CARD]
4 [CARD]Ninja of the Deep Hours[/CARD]
3 [CARD]Higure, the Still Wind[/CARD]

4 [CARD]Sleight of Hand[/CARD]
4 [CARD]Mishra's Bauble[/CARD]
4 [CARD]Mana Leak[/CARD]
4 [CARD]Remand[/CARD]
3 [CARD]Disrupting Shoal[/CARD]
4 [CARD]Repeal[/CARD]

SIDEBOARD:
2 [CARD]Llanowar Elves[/CARD]
3 [CARD]Carven Caryatid[/CARD]
2 [CARD]Meloku the Clouded Mirror[/CARD]
3 [CARD]Threads of Disloyalty[/CARD]
4 [CARD]Umezawa's Jitte[/CARD]
1 [CARD]Disrupting Shoal[/CARD]


The deck used cheap cards such as Ornithopter, Mishar's Bauble, Repeal and Birds of Paradise to quickly reach the 4-spells-per-turn mark needed to flip Erayo. The 0-power flyers filled another role as well: enabling a turn 2 Ninja of the Deep Hours. A typical ideal game would go like this:

Turn 1: Ornithopter.
Turn 2: Attack, then when your opponent raises an eyebrow you swap it with Ninja of Deep Hours.
Turn 3: Play Erayo (1 spell), play Ornithopter (2 spells), play Repeal on Ornithopter (3 spells), replay Ornithopter (4 spells, flip!). Oh, and attack with the Ninja for another card.
Turn 4: Opponent scoops up cards in disgust.

The deck was popularized by Maximilian Bracht, who won the 2006 German Nationals with it.
A detailed interview with him on this deck can be found here
Format: STANDARD

Decklist:

Show

By choppers777, August 2006

10 [CARD]Island[/CARD]
1 [CARD]Minamo, School at Water's Edge[/CARD]
1 [CARD]Oboro, Palace in the Clouds[/CARD]
4 [CARD]Urza's Mine[/CARD]
4 [CARD]Urza's Power Plant[/CARD]
4 [CARD]Urza's Tower[/CARD]

2 [CARD]Keiga, the Tide Star[/CARD]
1 [CARD]Meloku the Clouded Mirror[/CARD]
3 [CARD]Tidespout Tyrant[/CARD]

4 [CARD]Compulsive Research[/CARD]
3 [CARD]Dimir Signet[/CARD]
4 [CARD]Mana Leak[/CARD]
4 [CARD]Remand[/CARD]
4 [CARD]Repeal[/CARD]
4 [CARD]Sensei's Divining Top[/CARD]
4 [CARD]Sleight of Hand[/CARD]
2 [CARD]Spell Snare[/CARD]
1 [CARD]Tidings[/CARD]

SIDEBOARD:
4 [CARD]Annex[/CARD]
3 [CARD]Bottle Gnomes[/CARD]
2 [CARD]Clone[/CARD]
1 [CARD]Meloku the Clouded Mirror[/CARD]
2 [CARD]Spell Snare[/CARD]
3 [CARD]Threads of Disloyalty[/CARD]


Most Urza land decks you see are Red/Blue, with red for Wildfire, Demonfire, and Electrolyze. Those red cards are good to keep fast creatures at bay. But the above deck is not an average Urza deck. It skips the red and stays mono-blue. Instead of the red cards, it runs a crazy engine: Tidespout Tyrant and Sensei’s Divining Top. If you get a Tidespout Tyrant in play – and it’s not too hard to pay the expensive casting cost once you assemble all Urza pieces - plus two Sensei’s Divining Tops, you can start to bounce your opponent’s entire board. It works like this:

Step 1: You have Tidespout Tyrant in play, Top #1 in your hand, and Top #2 on top of your deck.
Step 2: You play Top #1 and bounce a permanent.
Step 3: You tap Top #1 to draw a card, so now Top #2 is in your hand and Top #1 is on top of your deck.
Step 4: You play Top #2 and bounce a permanent.
Step 5: You tap Top #2 to draw a card, so now Top #1 is in your hand and Top #2 is on top of your deck.
Step 6: Go back to step 1, rinse and repeat.

So basically, for every mana you have, you can bounce a permanent. If you have the Urzatron out, you should have enough mana to bounce your opponent’s entire board in one huge turn. The deck is an interesting twist and exceedingly fun, no really, a blast to play!
Format: STANDARD

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Katsuhiro Mori, Winner Japanese Nationals August 2006

4 [CARD]Underground River[/CARD]
3 [CARD]Hallowed Fountain[/CARD]
3 [CARD]Godless Shrine[/CARD]
2 [CARD]Watery Grave[/CARD]
1 [CARD]Adarkar Wastes[/CARD]
1 [CARD]Shizo, Death's Storehouse[/CARD]
1 [CARD]Tendo Ice Bridge[/CARD]
1 [CARD]Miren, the Moaning Well[/CARD]
1 [CARD]Minamo, School at Water's Edge[/CARD]
7 [CARD]Island[/CARD]

4 [CARD]Court Hussar[/CARD]
3 [CARD]Meloku the Clouded Mirror[/CARD]
4 [CARD]Dark Confidant[/CARD]

2 [CARD]Remove Soul[/CARD]
2 [CARD]Umezawa's Jitte[/CARD]
3 [CARD]Spell Snare[/CARD]
2 [CARD]Counterbalance[/CARD]
3 [CARD]Condemn[/CARD]
3 [CARD]Sensei's Divining Top[/CARD]
2 [CARD]Muddle the Mixture[/CARD]
4 [CARD]Remand[/CARD]
4 [CARD]Hinder[/CARD]

SIDEBOARD:
4 [CARD]Last Gasp[/CARD]
3 [CARD]Orzhov Pontiff[/CARD]
1 [CARD]Threads of Disloyalty[/CARD]
1 [CARD]Muddle the Mixture[/CARD]
1 [CARD]Ink-Eyes, Servant of Oni[/CARD]
2 [CARD]Annex[/CARD]
1 [CARD]Grand Arbiter Augustin IV[/CARD]
2 [CARD]Yosei, the Morning Star[/CARD]


Also known as UBW Counter Top control, the deck is very clever. It is a Blue control deck with a lot of countermagic. Note that the deck does not play Mana Leak, but instead it has Remove Soul. Remove Soul is an underappreciated card and in the current metagame full of creatures it's a fine choice. The deck splashes black for Dark Confidant - arguably the best card drawer in Standard – and white for Condemn and Court Hussar. The deck does not play Wrath of God, make sure you remember that! It easily works well without Wrath of God, since the overload of countermagic can halt opposing creatures just as well. Furthermore, the deck runs cheap creatures itself, so Wrath of God might backfire.

The best part of the deck is Sensei's Divining Top, it's so crucial that Top appears in the deck name. The deck abuses the artifact along with Dark Confidant to avoid damage and in conjunction with Counterbalance, to counter almost every spell your opponent plays. If you have three bad cards on top, you can also use Muddle the Mixture and Court Hussar to get rid of them and to see three brand new cards with Top. The main win mechanism of the deck is Meloku the Clouded Mirror, but you can also win a game with Court Hussar and Dark Confidant beatdown, especially if one of them carries Umezawa's Jitte. The sideboard is also very solid, allowing you to adjust your deck to whatever you are facing. I love the Orzhov Pontiffs. They are golden against 1/1 Snakes and they can also boost your Meloku tokens for a surprise kill. This deck is simply a great control deck.
Format: STANDARD

Decklist:
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By Joshua Claytor, August 2006

18 [CARD]Snow-Covered Forest[/CARD]
4 [CARD]Scrying Sheets[/CARD]

4 [CARD]Boreal Druid[/CARD]
4 [CARD]Boreal Centaur[/CARD]
4 [CARD]Dryad Sophisticate[/CARD]
4 [CARD]Silhana Ledgewalker[/CARD]
4 [CARD]Skarrgan Pit-Skulk[/CARD]
2 [CARD]Allosaurus Rider[/CARD]
2 [CARD]Viridian Shaman[/CARD]

4 [CARD]Giant Growth[/CARD]
4 [CARD]Moldervine Cloak[/CARD]
3 [CARD]Blanchwood Armor[/CARD]
3 [CARD]Might of Oaks[/CARD]

SIDEBOARD:
3 [CARD]Naturalize[/CARD]
2 [CARD]Dosan the Falling Leaf[/CARD]
2 [CARD]Arashi, the Sky Asunder[/CARD]
2 [CARD]Iwamori of the Open Fist[/CARD]
3 [CARD]Genju of the Cedars[/CARD]


This deck was originally built as a challenge to build a deck for Standard that cost 25 dollars or less, but it turned out to be quite good as well. Eventually some more rares have been added along the way, but the deck is still quite budget.
The strength of the deck is that it can deal a lot of damage in a short period of time. It is very consistent, streamlined, and focused. The deck has twelve unblockable men (Dryad Sophisticate, Silhana Ledgewalker, and Skarrgan Pit-Skulk), so these men plus enchantments that add plus 3 to 5 to the attack makes life hard for the unlucky opponent. That allows you to race past most slow creature decks. The main weakness of the deck is that it rolls over to Wrath of God and spot removal, mainly because of the card disadvantage the creature enchantments and pump spells impose when your creature is destroyed. Scrying Sheets help to get some kind of card advantage in the late game, since it can help you get past a land glut.
Format: EXTENDED

Decklist:

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By BottomDeck, August 2006

1 [CARD]Barbarian Ring[/CARD]
1 [CARD]Bloodstained Mire[/CARD]
3 [CARD]Forest[/CARD]
4 [CARD]Forgotten Cave[/CARD]
1 [CARD]Mountain[/CARD]
1 [CARD]Nantuko Monastery[/CARD]
1 [CARD]Sacred Foundry[/CARD]
2 [CARD]Stomping Ground[/CARD]
1 [CARD]Temple Garden[/CARD]
4 [CARD]Tranquil Thicket[/CARD]
1 [CARD]Windswept Heath[/CARD]
4 [CARD]Wooded Foothills[/CARD]

4 [CARD]Birds of Paradise[/CARD]
2 [CARD]Loxodon Hierarch[/CARD]
4 [CARD]Terravore[/CARD]
4 [CARD]Werebear[/CARD]
4 [CARD]Wild Mongrel[/CARD]

4 [CARD]Burning Wish[/CARD]
3 [CARD]Firebolt[/CARD]
3 [CARD]Life from the Loam[/CARD]
2 [CARD]Lightning Helix[/CARD]
3 [CARD]Seismic Assault[/CARD]
3 [CARD]Thoughts of Ruin[/CARD]

Sideboard
1 [CARD]Firebolt[/CARD]
1 [CARD]Hull Breach[/CARD]
1 [CARD]Life from the Loam[/CARD]
2 [CARD]Lightning Helix[/CARD]
1 [CARD]Loxodon Hierarch[/CARD]
1 [CARD]Morningtide[/CARD]
2 [CARD]Naturalize[/CARD]
1 [CARD]Nostalgic Dreams[/CARD]
2 [CARD]Pithing Needle[/CARD]
1 [CARD]Pyroclasm[/CARD]
1 [CARD]Shattering Spree[/CARD]
1 [CARD]Thoughts of Ruin[/CARD]


Aggro Loam abuses the amazing synergy between Life from the Loam and cycling lands. It is a ridiculous card draw engine, so the deck runs 3 Life from the Loam and 4 Burning Wish maindeck, thereby maximizing the odds of drawing the deck-defining sorcery. If you feel you’ve drawn enough cards with the Loam plus cycling lands combo, you can discard the lands to Seismic Assault, which can kill an opponent instantly. Aggro Loam also has an aggro element in Wild Mongrel, Terravore, burn spells, and Thoughts of Ruin. They fit in the deck perfectly. Wild Mongrel has great synergy with Life from the Loam, Terravore works well with the fetchlands, and Thoughts of Ruin can make for ridiculous starts such as turn 1 Birds of Paradise, turn 2 Terravore (with a fetchland), turn 3 Thoughts of Ruin. Plus destroying your own lands has good synergy with Life from the Loam. The fast creatures can deal a lot of damage quickly, at which point the burn spells and Seismic Assault can finish it. Dredging a Firebolt into the graveyard also feels nice.

Aggro Loam was the most popular and best deck in Extended in August 2006. Aggro Loam doesn’t really have bad matchups with the exception of the Heartbeat Storm Combo deck. Psychatog and Isochron Scepter decks are hard to beat game 1, because you have no answer to Psychatog or Isochron Scepter. After sideboard those matchups get a lot better, since you can add Naturalize for Isochron Scepter and Pithing Needle for Psytchatog. If you can stop those key cards, you have enough time to easily outdraw them with the Life from the Loam engine. Any aggro deck is pretty easy with the maindeck Lightning Helix and Loxodon Hierarch to frustrate their burn and it’s very hard for them to deal with a fast Seismic Assault. The matchup against Gifts Rock usually goes long and depends on your playing skill, but you should be able to beat them more often than not.
Format: EXTENDED

Decklist:
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By prolepsis9, August 2006

4 [CARD]Forest[/CARD]
1 [CARD]Swamp[/CARD]
1 [CARD]Temple Garden[/CARD]
1 [CARD]Watery Grave[/CARD]
4 [CARD]Windswept Heath[/CARD]
1 [CARD]Breeding Pool[/CARD]
1 [CARD]Hallowed Fountain[/CARD]
1 [CARD]Godless Shrine[/CARD]
1 [CARD]Golgari Rot Farm[/CARD]
1 [CARD]Island[/CARD]
3 [CARD]Overgrown Tomb[/CARD]
1 [CARD]Plains[/CARD]
2 [CARD]Polluted Delta[/CARD]

4 [CARD]Birds of Paradise[/CARD]
3 [CARD]Eternal Witness[/CARD]
1 [CARD]Genesis[/CARD]
2 [CARD]Loxodon Hierarch[/CARD]
1 [CARD]Ravenous Baloth[/CARD]
4 [CARD]Sakura-Tribe Elder[/CARD]

3 [CARD]Cabal Therapy[/CARD]
1 [CARD]Deep Analysis[/CARD]
4 [CARD]Gifts Ungiven[/CARD]
3 [CARD]Leyline of the Void[/CARD]
3 [CARD]Living Wish[/CARD]
4 [CARD]Pernicious Deed[/CARD]
1 [CARD]Plow Under[/CARD]
2 [CARD]Putrefy[/CARD]
1 [CARD]Sensei's Divining Top[/CARD]
1 [CARD]Vindicate[/CARD]

Sideboard
1 [CARD]Boseiju, Who Shelters All[/CARD]
1 [CARD]Carven Caryatid[/CARD]
1 [CARD]Cranial Extraction[/CARD]
2 [CARD]Duress[/CARD]
1 [CARD]Eternal Witness[/CARD]
1 [CARD]Global Ruin[/CARD]
1 [CARD]Golgari Rot Farm[/CARD]
1 [CARD]Haunting Echoes[/CARD]
1 [CARD]Kataki, War's Wage[/CARD]
2 [CARD]Loxodon Hierarch[/CARD]
1 [CARD]Naturalize[/CARD]
1 [CARD]Withered Wretch[/CARD]
1 [CARD]Simic Sky Swallower[/CARD]


Gifts Rock is arguably the second best deck in Online Extended at the time of writing (August 2006). A thing that might strick you is maindeck Leyline of the Void. The card belongs maindeck, since Extended truly resolves around the graveyard nowadays. Life from the Loam, Psychatog, Nostalgic Dreams, Gifts Ungiven, Firebolt, the list goes on. It is really worth it to run Leyline of the Void in your deck to shut down your opponent’s graveyard recursion. The format is that crazy. That said, let’s analyze this Gifts Rock deck further. It plays typical Rock cards, such as Birds of Paradise, Sakura-Tribe Elder, Eternal Witness, Cabal Therapy, Living Wish, Putrefy, and of course Pernicious Deed. Green-Black Rock control decks are as old as the format itself, and this deck builds on that archetype. But Gifts Rock adds something extra. As the name might suggest, it runs blue for Gifts Ungiven.

A typical Gifts setups is Genesis, Eternal Witness, Cabal Therapy, and another card, for example Pernicious Deed. The best thing your opponent can do is usually to put Genesis and Cabal Therapy in your hand. After all, if he chooses to put Genesis in the graveyard, he has put it right where you want it to be. Nevertheless, you can still get Genesis in the graveyard by sacrificing him to flashback Cabal Therapy. Then, you can return Eternal Witness, which in turn gets Pernicious Deed back. You blow up the board, including Eternal Witness, which is then in the graveyard once again, ready to be recurred by Genesis once more. This is only one of the many Gifts setups you can do with this deck. You can also go for a life gain package in Living Wish, Loxodon Hierarch, Ravenous Baloth, and Eternal Witness against burn decks. Or you can select 4 lands if you’re mana light. I can’t cover all the options, since there are so many, but with Cabal Therapy, Deep Analysis, and Genesis in the deck, Gifts Ungiven is ridiculously powerful since those cards are just as good in the graveyard as in your hand. Not to mention how good it is to include Eternal Witness in the four cards you search with Gifts. The sideboard includes silver bullets for Living Wish, ranging from Boeseiju, Who Shelters All against counterdecks to Withered Wretch against graveyard dependant decks. Furthermore, the sideboard features discard spells to put in against control or combo decks. Rock Gifts is rock solid against the entire metagame, with the exepction of 1 deck: Tooth and Nail. It’s very hard to beat that, since none of your cards truly disrupt their combo.
Do we not already have one of these?

Actually, there's a very fundamental difference between the two. The DDOP is more a quick-reference guide to decks from various formats, and it is skewed towards paper-Magic. This thread appears to be specifically designed for the ever-changing MTGO metas -- and it's specifically oriented towards Karsten's Online Tech article. The primers are written by Karsten, and the descriptions are seem to be more in-depth than my mini-primers. While I think this thread may be better-suited to Magic Online General, I see no reason not to let it stick around.

I've already PM'd Karsten, and I'm hoping we can collaborate on both projects. I see the merits of an online-specific DDOP, and admittedly a handful of my primers are out-of-date... especially in the context of MTGO, where (as Karsten said), the meta changes daily.


Under control,
it's better this way anyway... with all the decks coming out lately (and TS is only gonna add more to the table), you guys who archive decks need all the help you can get, right? :D

i really like threads like these anyway... deck construction is my favorite part of mtg, but i haven't been playing that long, so it helps to read about past strategies and philosophies and stuff. i don't see how one more DoP thread could hurt. XD
Actually, there's a very fundamental difference between the two. The DDOP is more a quick-reference guide to decks from various formats, and it is skewed towards paper-Magic. This thread appears to be specifically designed for the ever-changing MTGO metas -- and it's specifically oriented towards Karsten's Online Tech article.

QFT.
This thread is next to the original deck-o-pedia for the above reasons mainly, plus it makes it a lot easier for me to link to my own thread when I'm writing a column and have to link 10-20 decks to their corresponding posts in this thread every week.
Format: STANDARD

Decklist:



The goal of this deck is to use Birds of Paradise and Llanowar Elves to accelerate into a turn 2 Hypnotic Specter or Ohran Viper. Those creatures are very good, since if a control deck cannot deal with them right away, the card advantage they provide will likely win you the game. When you play them on turn 2 on the play, there is not much many control decks can do about them. This deck would have never worked pre-Coldsnap with only four Hypnotic Specters as great 3-drops, but Ohran Viper makes it viable. The deck also ran Dark Confidant, Giant Solifuge and Umezawa’s Jitte, which should basically go into every aggro deck that can support them, so that’s no surprise. Rounding out the deck were a couple Genju of the Cedars, Putrefy, Giant Solifuge, and a splash for the powerful game-ending Demonfire.
Format: STANDARD

Decklist:

Zoo is basically the simplest deck in the format. It has the most efficient creatures - 2/2 and 2/3 for one mana, 3/3 for two mana, the most impressible drops - and highly efficient burn spells including Char and Lightning Helix. The goal is to take early game initiative and then bury the opponent in an overabundance of burn spells to the head. You can't argue with the deck's all-out efficiency and it can definitely get some unbeatable turn 4 kill draws. The objections to the deck are largely based on its sometimes unreliable 3-color mana base.
Format: STANDARD

Decklist:


Akira Asahara is the Enduring Ideal master. He had made it to the top 8 of last year’s World Championships with an Enduring Ideal deck and I think everyone who like the epic card should trust his builds since he knows the deck inside out. Once Enduring Ideal fans online saw the innovative deck he played at the Japanese Nationals, they quickly copied it and took it to the Premier Events. The main innovation of this deck is the addition of the trio of Counterbalance, Scrying Sheets, and Sensei’s Divining Top. Counterbalance and Scrying Sheets become powerhouses once you can control the top cards of your deck. Last week, many players had showed up with Blue-White, Blue-Black, of Blue-White-Black control decks with a lot of countermagic, Sensei’s Divining Top, Counterbalance and Scrying Sheets. This deck plays those cards as well, but they don’t reside in a classic control deck, but in an Enduring Ideal combo deck. The deck works like this. In the early game, you dig for an Enduring Ideal with Sensei’s Divining Top, Scrying Sheets, and Court Hussar. Wrath of God takes out an opposing assault along the way. Hopefully, you can accelerate into a turn 5-6 Enduring Ideal with Coldsteel Heart or Azorius Signet and then the fun begins. What you search out then of course depends on the situation, but a Zur’s Weirding is often a good start, since that allows you to control your opponent’s draws. Or you can go for the combo of Dovescape and Meishin, the Mind Cage, shutting down your opponent’s spells. The kill mechanism is Form of the Dragon. The best thing about this new version is that even though Enduring Ideal prevents you from playing spells, it does not prevent you from countering every card your opponent plays with Counterbalance and Sensei’s Divining Top. Those cards still work under the Epic restriction.
Format: STANDARD

Decklist:


The deck is very innovative and was originally created as a joke budget deck. The original version played Phyrexian Ironfoot and Sunscour instead of Wrath of God and Yosei, the Morning Star, but once they learned that the deck was actually quite competitive they took the plunge and got the more expensive cards. Even then, the deck remains a budget option.

The game plan is to use recurring Martyr of Sands and Kami of False Hope to stay at a high life total. Debtor’s Knell, Adarkar Valkyrie, and most importantly the forecast ability of Proclamation of Rebirth allow the deck to reuse the same Kami of False Hope over and over again as a form of Fog-lock. The deck is very good against most aggro decks (Zoo, Hand in Hand, Gruul, Snakes, Satanic Sligh, GBr Aggro, etc.). Those decks already have problem overcoming a full suite of Wrath of God, Faith’s Fetters, and Condemn. But tagging on a recurring Kami of False Hope and a Martyr of Sands for 18 life is just unfair. How can a creature deck beat that?! The deck eventually wins by beating down with Yosei, the Morning Star or Adarkar Valkyrie. By staying mono-white, you can play an all-snow mana base, which allows you to take advantage of Scrying Sheets. To get maximum leverage out of Scrying Sheets, you have Sensei’s Divining Top which will make sure a snow land keeps floating on top. The bad matchups of the deck are Izzetron, Solar Flare, and Sea Stompy, or basically every deck with disruption. Countermagic is not even that problematic, since it can’t stop Proclamation of Rebirth’s forecast, but a Persecute on white is quite mean. That’s why there are Ivory Masks in the sideboard. The latest tech has been to add black for Ghost-Lit Stalker and Mortify; this improves the matchups against control.
Format: STANDARD

Decklist:

“Ghost Dad” was built on the idea that Shoals are cool, and that triggering Tallowisp and Thief of Hope is profitable. The deck focuses its efforts on breaking Tallowisp. In order to accommodate the Tallowisp engine, it has to compromise unconditionally adopted cards like Mortify for the potential card advantage of Pillory of the Sleepless in the course of its design. Cards that can trigger Tallowisp or Thief of Hope are the Shoals, Thief of Hope, Ghost Council of Orzhova, Kami of Ancient Law, Thief of Hope and Plagued Rusalka. Yup, almost the entire deck is Spirit or Arcane.

Ghost Dad is one of the best decks you can possibly play against Red-based beatdown. However, Ghost Dad can force interaction only if the opponent is willing to play on the same field of battle. For example, it is great at holding down creatures with Pillory of the Sleepless, but against Heartbeat of Spring combo, its main out is the one Strands of Undeath and the hope that a single Kami of Ancient Law will be enough.
Format: STANDARD

Decklist:

The key card of this deck is the maindeck Cryoclasm. It might seem very strange to play a situational card maindeck. In fact, if I ever had to give someone a good example of what is a typical sideboard card, it would probably be Cryoclasm. However, it does make sense in the current Standard format, since 80% of the decks decks play Islands or Plains. The reason why Crycolasm is so good is its mana cost. We’ve had all kinds of four mana Stone Rain variants from Demolish to Wrecking Ball, but the casting cost of three mana is key. This deck can now play eight three mana land destruction spells, which allows you to consistently get the turn 1 Llanowar Elves or Birds of Paradise, turn 2 Cryoclasm or Stone Rain opening. The difference between destroying a land on turn 2 and on turn 3 is huge. It can mean the difference between winning and losing. The deck is rounded out with typical Sea Stompy cards; some big creatures, utility in Umezawa’s Jitte and Remand, and a surprise Ninja of the Deep Hours.
Format: STANDARD

Decklist:


GhaziGlare has a number of viable game plans. The deck can function as a reasonable G/W beatdown deck with mana acceleration and efficient threats such as a fast Watchwolf and Kodama of the North Tree. And Umezawa's Jitte, of course. The deck can also win via marrying token creatures (produced by Vitu-Ghazi, the City-Tree or Selesnya Guildmage) and Glare of Subdual into an overwhelming board advantage. And the deck can also go for the double Yosei, the Morning Star lock, especially post-board. GhaziGlare has many unique elements, such as the underrated Congregation at Dawn, which fetches 3 Loxodon Hierarch to win the game against any burn deck.
Format: STANDARD

Decklist:


Ghost Husk is a BW Aggro deck packing its namesake cards: Ghost Council of the Orzhova and Nantuko Husk. The deck is built to abuse the hell out of the synergy between Nantuko Husk, Promise of Bunrei and Orzhov Pontiff. Husk+Promise allows you to sacrifice the tokens to make a big Husk. Husk+Pontiff gives you an easy sacrifice outlet to trigger the haunt. Promise+Pontiff results in four 2/2 tokens. The rest of the deck includes top creatures such as Dark Confidant and disruption such as Castigate.
Format: STANDARD

Decklist:

This deck is a crossover between Satanic Sligh and Boros Deck Wins. Its main colors are red and white, splashing black for Dark Confidant and sometimes Hit/Run. Bob Maher’s Invitational card is apparently so good that it draws the Boros legion to the dark side.
Format: STANDARD

Decklist:

The deck, originally designed by Wessel Oomens, builds on a strong Sea Stompy base, but cuts the red cards to get a more consistent and less painful mana base. Wessel found that the red cards in Sea Stompy (Seal of Fire, Kird Ape, and sideboard Rumbling Slum) didn’t really add anything special to the deck. Therefore he cut those cards and replaced them with Plaxmanta and more Llanowar Elves. Plaxmanta is actually very good in the current metagame full of Condemn, Mortify, Last Gasp, and Seal of Fire.

Good matchups are any non-aggresive and control decks, for example solar flare, heartbeat, magnivore, izzetron. Bad matchups are aggressive and anti-creature-decks, for example satanic sligh, ghaziglare, zoo.
Format: STANDARD

Decklist:

This deck can rightfully be called a pile. This deck is similar to the GBR Aggro deck. The difference is that the above deck splashes white instead of red and it plays a couple extra creatures that do something special if they damage an opponent. How many of those do we have exactly? Let’s count. Hypnotic Specter and Ohran Viper, that makes eight. Two Ink-Eyes, Servant of Oni, which makes ten. So far so good, these cards are perfectly reasonable inclusions. But then we get to Okiba-Gang Shinobi. FOUR maindeck? Wow. Fourteen creatures that generate an effect if they deal damage to an opponent? It seems that Robert really wanted to get an advantage if one of his creatures go unblocked and just doing damage wasn’t good enough for him. The rest of the deck is filled with an overabundance of mana elves, an incomprehensible white splash, and a completely random singleton Gather Courage. A pile indeed. Full of Ninja-style creatures. In other words, a Ninja Pile (hence the name). Don’t worry, I know Robert, the maker, won’t mind me saying that about his deck. He is very well aware his deck doesn’t adhere to normal deck building standards. Ah well, it has worked for him and for a couple players online as well.
Format: TRIBAL WARS - STANDARD

Decklist:

The idea of the deck is to hold off early beats with countermagic, bounce, and burn, until you can put down an Azami, Lady of Scrolls - a perfect fit for a tribal deck. You draw some cards, until you find Niv-Mizzet, the Firemind. Once you get both Legends in place, your Wizards army turns into a card-drawing, fire-spitting team and winning the game is trivial at that point. A smart part of this deck is that it “cheats” on the Wizards count. As a control deck, you actually don’t want to play 20 creatures, rather you want more reactive spells. Martyr of Frost and Sparkmage Apprentice solve this problem. Their main function is as a counterspell and a removal card, while they also count as wizards at the same time!
Format: TRIBAL WARS - STANDARD

Decklist:

This is the deck that eventually won the 86-player 4x Premier Event, and according to Meu nome é Baia, this is the best deck in the format. I agree with him. The deck looks solid, synergetic, and powerful. It is reminiscent of the Ghost Husk deck that dominated Standard a couple months ago. The deck is very good against the snake and elf tribe, mainly because of the amount of creature destruction it has: Wrath of God, Nekrataal, Mortify, Wrath of God, and Orzhov Pontiff tear opposing men to pieces. You have a harder time against control decks, but it’s still winnable. You have a fast curve, and backed up by degenerate Nantuko Husk – Promise of Bunrei – Orzhov Pontiff tricks you can pull off turn 5 kills. Nantuko Husk allows you to trigger Promise of Bunrei or Orzhov Pontiff’s haunt at will. Promise of Bunrei tokens have great synergy with Nantuko Husk (as sacrifice fodder) and with Orzhov Pontiff (make an army of large tokens).
Format: TRIBAL WARS - STANDARD

Decklist:

This is an inexpensive, easy and straightforward deck with a game plan. The Elf tribe attempts to put out a semi-unblockable creature (Skarrgan Pit-Skulk or Silhana Ledgewalker) and then the elves boost, they pump, and enhance their unblockable kin to an unmanageable size. Might of Oaks and Blanchwood Armor allow a tiny elf to deal a lot of damage in a short period of time. Elvish Champion is the lord of the tribe. The main weakness of the deck is that it rolls over to Wrath of God and spot removal, mainly because of the card disadvantage the creature enchantments and pump spells impose when your creature is destroyed. Scrying Sheets helps to get some kind of card advantage in the late game, since it can help you get past a land glut.
Format: STANDARD

Decklist:

This deck can be viewed as a variation on regular Structure & Force, which abuses Sensei’s Divining Top in combination with Counterbalance and Dark Confidant. Adding Scrying Sheets to that deck would be nice, since it would make Sensei’s Divining Top even stronger, but it is very hard to do that without ruining the 3-color mana base. I tried it, adding 2 Scrying Sheets and some snow lands to the deck, but wasn’t completely satisfied with it. This deck cuts the white from Structure & Force, replacing Condemn with Boomerang and Court Hussar with Phyrexian Ironfoot.

This deck is good against Solar Flare, because in the long game you should have an overwhelming card advantage via Scrying Sheets and all you need to do is counter his relevant cards. Scrying Sheets makes sure you never run out of gas. You have problems against aggro decks, since in game 1 you don’t have many answers to resolved creatures. But you can still hope to win 2-1, taking the post-sidebaorded games with all your anti-aggro cards. Your game plan against aggro is basically to stall the opponent, stabilize, and swing the game with Umezawa’s Jitte.

I like the deck. I prefer Structure & Force, but if the metagame were to swing towards control again, then I would be inclined to pick the Blue-Black version. I don’t think this deck gets enough love and I find it strange that almost no one plays it. The deck is not that bad. If I were to play this deck myself, I’d include a couple Watery Grave for better mana stability, maindeck Last Gasp to beat turn 2 Ohran Viper, and tune the anti-creature suite in the sideboard by including a couple Threads of Disloyalty and Deathmark.
Format: STANDARD

Decklist:


jono mizer told me told me:

“I chose to go with a Battle of Wits deck because I wanted to play a new and interesting deck. Since the Nationals season I had been putting in a lot of work on the mainstream and tier 1 decks. That got boring eventually, so I turned to the deck more for fun and variety. The metagame right now seems to be fine for a Battle of Wits deck. I have a very good matchup against midrange aggro decks, of which there are quite a few. On the other hand, the popularity of Satanic Sligh hurts me a lot, due to the lack of answers to a Genju of the Spires and because the deck can consistently get draws that are to fast for my deck. But I don’t see any major problems with the rest of the field. My deck has an abundance of removal and card advantage, so I can handle most strategies well. The diversity of the deck makes it impossible to play around specific cards, like you could if you were playing versus a popular list of 60 cards, so in that respect it causes opponents to misplay or overextend at the wrong time. It wasn’t cheap to collect all the cards for this deck, but it’s worth it. If you’re playing for fun, then 250 cards is better than 40 cards or 60 cards!“
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Decklist:

The name comes from an awkward situation where I (Frank Karsten) was being confined in a bus together with Brian David-Marshall and Billy Moreno. They were making some ugly jokes regarding killing babies, and since I don’t enjoy the ritual sacrifice of cute little babies, I couldn’t really appreciate those jokes. A lot of confusion has arosen over who actually built this deck, due to a practical joke that got out of hand. I can honestly tell you that I didn't build this deck, Mike Flores did (for reals this time).

The major incentive of the deck is to accelerate into a turn 2 land destruction card. Turn 1 Llanowar Elves, turn 2 Stone Rain is a very strong opening. You can also substitute Boreal Druid for Llanowar Elves and Crycoclasm for Stone Rain and still get the same opening. This redundancy is what makes the deck good and consistent. Cryoclasm is a worthy maindeck card by the way, since about 80% of the decks play white and/or blue; Satanic Sligh is pretty much the only deck without targets.

By staying two colors, you open up your mana base to include Scrying Sheets. That is what makes this deck tick and many card choices have been made with that snowy card drawer in mind. After destroying your opponent’s lands in the early game, you will refill with Scrying Sheets / Sensei’s Divining Top in the middle turns. If you were lacking Scrying Sheets, Into the North will happily go and fetch it for you. You then draw into the snowy Ohran Viper or Stalking Yeti, play out those creatures, and finish with a Demonfire to the dome in the long game. If your opponent managed to resolve a big creature in the meantime, no worries. You play 4 Skred, which basically reads “1 mana: destroy target creature, no questions asked” in this deck. That’s marvelous!
Format: STANDARD

Decklist:

This blue-black can be decomposed into three interacting parts. The first part of the deck is the graveyard fillers: Drowned Rusalka, Ideas Unbound, Thought Courier, Compulsive Research, and Vexing Sphinx allow you to discard cards often and early. The next part of the deck consists of the cards you want to discard: a couple Dragons and the clever Protean Hulk. The last piece of the deck that glues everything together consists of the reanimator spells: Zombify, Footsteps of the Goryo and Vigor Mortis. The goal is to dump a fatty in the graveyard quickly, then get it back in play for a cheap mana cost. The deck has a couple interesting choices, most notably Protean Hulk. This man is resistant to Wrath of God, searching a dragon out of your deck when it dies. He also allows you to play a couple silver bullet creatures that can be tutored up when the situation arises: Kagemaro, First to Suffer and Mindslicer can be potentially devastating.

Also note that this deck chooses Footsteps of the Goryo over Vigor Mortis, which is a good choice in this deck for multiple reasons. First, it is only three mana and it only requires one black mana to play. Second, most of the reanimator targets do something useful when they go to the graveyard, so you are actually happy you get to sacrifice them. Footsteps of the Goryo on Kokusho, the Evening Star is a ten point life swing for three mana, and playing it on Protean Hulk is awesome for similar reasons. This brings me to Drowned Rusalka, which is invaluable in the deck since it can trigger the leave-play abilities in a pinch. The deck is quite cleverly construed.
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Decklist:

This deck aims to beat Aggro Loamby attacking its namesake card, Life from the Loam. Without Life from the Loam, Aggro Loam will have a hard time winning. Loaming Shaman and Scrabbling Claws empty the graveyard and a Chalice of the Void set on two prevents Aggro Loam from casting Life from the Loam altogether (or Burning Wish, Wild Mongrel, or Werebear, for that matter). Mono Green Aggro plays almost no 2-casting cost cards, which means that you are not hurt by a Chalice on two at all. The deck actually tries to skip the 2-drop completely by using Llanowar Elves, Birds of Paradise and Chrome Mox. The deck aims to accelerate into fat green creatures quickly. Turn 1 Llanowar Elves/Birds of Paradise, turn 2 Troll Ascetic/Call of the Herd, turn 3 Phantom Centaur/Iwamori of the Open Fist is an awesome start, especially if you follow it up with an equipment to beef up your guys. It’s a simple and straightforward plan, but early green monsters will put on a lot of pressure.

I got another decklist from jane_doe and it looked similar to the above one. The main difference was that jane_doe played Scrabbling Claws sideboard, Boreal Druid instead of Chrome Mox, and extra Call of the Herds instead of Iwamori of the Open Fist. Also, he played a couple Mouth of Ronom. Arguments can be made for all of these card choices, but the above decklist had the best results overall.
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Decklist:

The Urza lands don’t get a lot of action in Standard anymore nowadays, but they have made their way into Extended. This deck was made by Tiago Chan and the people from clan Diplomats. Tiago Chan wrote about this deck in detail here, so check that out if you’re interested. This deck tries to get the complete Urzatron set in place quickly. Once you have managed to get one of each Urza land in play, the mana heavy win conditions including Meloku, the Clouded Mirror, Triskeleon, Sundering Titan, Mindslaver, and Burning Wish for Demonfire become much easier to cast.

The deck has 10 counters that are mainly used to stall the opponent. Remand and Memory Lapse are not hard counters, but they buy precious time in which you can find the Urzatron. It might seem strange to play those counters as four-ofs and only 2 Counterspell, but this is done mainly due to mana requirements. With 12 colorless lands in your deck, 1U is much easier than UU. Fact or Fiction and Thirst for Knowledge are your card drawers that get you closer towards completing the Tron. Lastly, Fire/Ice and Repeal get rid of annoying creatures and permanents.

One of the reasons why this deck was successful is its good matchup against Aggro Loam. Your counters can defend until you assemble your Tron, at which point Mindslaver can come over to steal the game – why don’t you target yourself 10 times with your Seismic Assault, thank you very much – or Burning Wish can get a lethal Demonfire. The deck also has a lot of game against the control decks, due to the counters and the powerful late game cards. Aggro decks are rougher, but after sideboard it’s very winnable. You have Flametongue Kavu and Pyroclasm against weenies, along with Shattering Spree against Affinity.