Five Decks You Can’t Miss This Week
Welcome to Five Decks you Can't Miss, a new weekly feature on Gathering Magic where we highlight some of the most powerful, awesome, and over-the-top decks we can find. If you're looking for unique, wacky, or rogue deck ideas from across multiple formats in one convenient place, this is the place for you! Let's start with a unique take on Modern Affinity:
— Arthur Halavais (@ahalavais) December 27, 2012
Birthing Pod Affinity - Modern | cjlack92
Birthing Pod is capable of some incredible tricks, and this deck pushes the card to its limits. While this deck is capable of some of the more aggressive draws of other aggressive artifact decks, what you really want to do is use affinity cards like Myr Enforcer to cheat up the Birthing Pod chain.
Frogmite Pods into Zealous Conscripts, which gets you one of your powerful six drops like Inferno Titan. Somber Hoverguard Pods into seven drops like Elesh Norn that can lock entire strategies out of the game. Last, and most exciting, Myr Enforcer cheats eight drops into play. In this build, those options are Craterhoof Behemoth and Griselbrand, but those could easily become things like Sundering Titan and Tidespout Tyrant, or could even get Podded into Iona, Shield of Emeria against combo.
Our next deck is for the Pauper format, and is from an Magic Online Daily Event:
GR Madness - Pauper | Fliphead
Pauper is a deceptively fast format defined by small creatures, efficient spells, and quick combos. Efficient, large creatures like Wild Mongrel and Werebear can be surprisingly difficult to deal with for decks without Journey to Nowhere or Flame Slash, and that's exactly what this deck takes advantage of. Your deck is a pile of cheap, resilient creatures backed by burn to either clear the way or go to the face.
This particular deck will certainly have some trouble against the fast combo decks like Poison and Storm, just because it's difficult to both apply a clock and represent disruption. Against the rest of the field, the combination of beefy creatures and cheap, flexible disruption should be able to get there.
The third deck for this week is another Modern list. Since the format's inception, people have believed control to be dead. It's always seemed like there are so many powerful, proactive decks that it's better to just be aggressive with creatures or a combo. That said, WatoO managed to prove otherwise in the MTGO PTQ:
Four Color Teachings - Modern | WaToO, 9th 12/24/12 PTQ
This deck has a truly impressive configuration of powerful, efficient answers to leverage against the creature-based decks like Affinity and Infect. The problem with a deck like that is that you would frequently get ground out by Jund. WaToO solved this problem by using Electrolyze to kill their creatures for value, and Sphinx's Revelation or White Sun's Zenith to just end the game.
The flexibility of cards like Izzet Charm and the rate at which you can churn through your deck with Electrolyze and Remand mean that you have game against most of the field. You can afford one-ofs in your 75, and you can be assured that they will make a difference. Decks like this prey on a stagnant metagame, like the current Jund-weighted Modern.
Now let's head into Standard, with another list from an Magic Online Daily Event:
Esper Control - Standard | Gard
With Standard in an upward spiral of midrangey aggressive decks using Thundermaw Hellkite to beat Sphinx's Revelation decks, it may be time to return to the inevitability provided by Nephalia Drownyard. This card backed by an balanced suite of removal and countermagic is very difficult to beat since neither player is really doing much of anything.
Gard's deck is well positioned against other Sphinx's Revelation decks like UW Flash that make up a good portion of the Standard metagame. This is because you're drawing hard counters, spot removal, and win conditions that are difficult to answer, like planeswalkers and Drownyards, while your opponent is drawing creatures and more card draw, neither of which you tend to care about.
Shardless Aluren - Legacy | thejim22
Aluren is a combo deck that shows up in Legacy from time to time, though its appearances in paper events is somewhat limited by the price tag on Imperial Recruiter. This deck uses Shardless Agent to cascade into cantrips and Living Wish, increasing the consistency of your combo.
The Aluren combo works by using Imperial Recruiter to tutor for Dream Stalker, then Cavern Harpy, then Parasitic Strix by repeatedly bouncing the Recruiter. Each one life you pay to bounce the Harpy drains two of your opponent's life with Parasitic Strix.
Shardless Agent is especially powerful with the Dream Stalker and Cavern Harpy effects which are necessary for the Aluren combo. Because Shardless Agent cascades into Living Wish or cantrips[/card], you can use it to set up the secondary combo of Show and Tell plus Emrakul, the Aeons Torn. This gives you an explosive and powerful backup plan, with the card selection to choose which combo is more appropriate.
Be sure to let us know what you think of this new Saturday feature, and if there are particular formats you'd like to see highlighted (or decks you think are awesome) tell us on Twitter!