MTG Reporter - Clawing Back, Clawing Forth [Edward Eng] February 17, 2015 01:00


So, was RW Aggro good enough for SCG Houston?

Hmmmmm...nah! I still felt RW Aggro wasn't getting the job done against the G(x) Ramp decks. And I predicted a lot of World Eaters and Elementals coming out of the woodworks. 

Theros - Polukranos, World Eater Fate Reforged - Whisperwood Elemental Theros - Nykthos, Shrine to Nyx Fate Reforged - Ugin, the Spirit Dragon

So what's the answer to the green fatty decks? I chatted with Timothy 'Ty' Thomason and Collin Rountree at Asgard Games on Monday before the Valentine's Day weekend. And Ty said the G(x) Ramp decks usually have a tougher time against flying beats. 'TY'pical. Sensical.

So what's an aggro deck that applies pressure via the skies? I got to work and stumbled across this.

Ah yes, the forgotten Mantis Rider. I goldfished it a few times and it felt decent, but I wanted to make some quick small changes. I felt it needed a few more non-Raise the Alarm two-drops. Nothing came to mind except Soulfire Grand Master. Unfortunately, SGM is more of a pseudo two-drop. Oh well, let's jam two and see what's up. The mana base is a little clunky too. So I swapped a few lands and came up with this.

Standard
Jeskai Aggro Version 1 - Edward Eng

Creatures (18)
4 Goblin Rabblemaster
4 Mantis Rider
4 Seeker of the Way
Soulfire Grand Master
2 Shaman of the Great Hunt
2 Stormbreath Dragon

Spells (18)
Abzan Advantage
Dig Through Time
2 Jeskai Charm
4 Lightning Strike
4 Stoke the Flames
2 Valorous Stance
3 Wild Slash

 

 

 

Lands (25)
2 Island
3 Mountain
2 Plains
3 Battlefield Forge
3 Flooded Strand
4 Mystic Monastery
2 Shivan Reef
Temple of Enlightenment
3 Temple of Triumph

Sideboard
Stormbreath Dragon
Abzan Advantage
2 Disdainful Stroke
3 Dissipate
Jeskai Charm
1 Negate
Valorous Stance
1 Keranos, God of Storms
3 Arc Lightning

I goldfished a bit more. And although the deck is labeled Jeskai Aggro, I felt the deck wasn't aggro enough. If you don't draw Seeker, you're not really doing anything proactive until turn three. The deck isn't going 'big' either. So is it trying to play the best tempo game? Is it just trying to be better than Abzan Midrange?

Born of the Gods - Courser of Kruphix Khans of Tarkir - Abzan Charm  Theros - Elspeth, Sun's Champion

Is that even a path worth going down? Shelved. Back to work and I stumbled across this.

Standard
Temur Aggro - Jeff Hoogland

Creatures (30)
4 Elvish Mystic
4 Heir of the Wilds
3 Frost Walker
3 Courser of Kruphix
4 Goblin Rabblemaster
4 Savage Knuckleblade
4 Shaman of the Great Hunt
4 Stormbreath Dragon

Spells (7)
3 Stubborn Denial
4 Crater's Claws

 

 

 

 

Lands (23)
2 Forest
2 Mountain
4 Frontier Bivouac
2 Mana Confluence
3 Shivan Reef
1 Temple of Abandon
1 Temple of Epiphany
4 Wooded Foothills
4 Yavimaya Coast

Sideboard
2 Destructive Revelry
1 Dig Through Time
3 Disdainful Stroke
1 Force Away
3 Lightning Strike
1 Stubborn Denial
2 Wild Slash
2 Anger of the Gods

Going going, back back to Temur Temur. Temur Temur. I saw Frost Walker Temur a little while back, but I was already on the RW Aggro boat at the time. After making the rounds, I'm glad I saw Frosty again. And I liked how Jeff cut Frosty to three and showed Shaman of the Great Hunt some love. It ain't no secret that Shaman is good.

Fate Reforged - Frost Walker Khans of Tarkir - Savage Knuckleblade Fate Reforged - Shaman of the Great Hunt Fate Reforged - Winds of Qal Sisma

Back to my Temur roots. This is a list I could get behind. It applies pressure in the early turns, can play the tempo game, and finishes things from the clouds. However, I noticed the deck was a little land light. And even though UW Heroic has taken a bit of back seat owing to the rise of RW Aggro and Midrange, I still wanted to shore up the match a bit with my old-school sideboard tech, Winds of Qal Sisma. Here's what I opted for.

Standard
Temur Aggro Version 1 (more like 20) - Edward Eng

Creatures (29)
4 Elvish Mystic
4 Heir of the Wilds
3 Frost Walker
3 Courser of Kruphix
4 Goblin Rabblemaster
4 Savage Knuckleblade
Shaman of the Great Hunt
4 Stormbreath Dragon

Spells (7)
3 Stubborn Denial
4 Crater's Claws

 

 

 

 

Sideboard
2 Destructive Revelry
1 Dig Through Time
3 Disdainful Stroke
1 Force Away
3 Lightning Strike
Winds of Qal Sisma
2 Wild Slash
2 Anger of the Gods

This felt better. I tested this at Heroes Collectables on Thursday before the Open and only lost to the mirror. Settled.

Saturday rolls around and it's on.

Round 1 - RW Aggro (W)
Round 2 - Sultai Whip (L)
Round 3 - Abzan Midrange (W)
Round 4 - Jund Ramp (L)
Round 5 - Abzan Aggro (W)
Round 6 - RG Aggro (W)
Round 7 - Mardu Aggro (W)
Round 8 - GB Constellation (W)
Round 9 - GR Ramp (L)

I really Clawed my way back to qualify for Day 2 at 6-3.

Khans of Tarkir - Crater's Claws

Sunday rolls around and it's on again.

Round 10 - Mono Red (W)
Round 11 - RW Aggro (W)
Round 12 - Jeskai Tokens (L)
Round 13 - UW Heroic (L)
Round 14 - GR Aggro (W)
Round 15 - ID

I finished 44th. Good but still not great. Would I play the deck again? Yes. Do I recommend this deck? Yes, but only if it's your play style and you have enough time to practice with it.

Congrats to Robert Berni for clawing down the 2015 SCG Houston Open! 

Standard
GR Devotion - Robert Berni

Creatures (31)
4 Elvish Mystic
2 Genesis Hydra
4 Sylvan Caryatid
4 Voyaging Satyr
4 Whisperwood Elemental
1 Boon Satyr
4 Courser of Kruphix
4 Eidolon of Blossoms
4 Polukranos, World Eater

Spells (6)
4 Crater's Claws
2 Ugin, the Spirit Dragon

 

Lands (23)

10 Forest
1 Mountain
4 Temple of Abandon
4 Wooded Foothills
4 Nykthos, Shrine to Nyx

Sideboard
2 Arbor Colossus
2 Genesis Hydra

3 Nylea's Disciple
2 Reclamation Sage
2 Setessan Tactics
1 Xenagos, God of Revels
3 Nissa, Worldwaker

 

I'm not sure if I can make it to the Dallas Open yet. But I hope to see you all there.

Always remember to have fun,
Edward Eng a.k.a. Eddie

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