Dignified Response

Pauper is getting increasingly streamlined as time goes on. Curves are getting lower, more pressure is being placed on making sure your early interaction lines up effectively, and people are dying very quickly. Moment’s Peace was the answer for a couple of weeks, but once people start packing Flaring Pain, that answer just isn’t going to cut it. Fortunately, players like Hampuse1 are innovating and finding new and exciting ways to prevent themselves from getting attacked to death:


Stonehorn Dignitary
There’s nothing new about the core of this deck. Urza lands powering Blue haymakers has been a mainstay of Pauper ever since Cloudpost was banned. You’ve got Prophetic Prism to allow you to cast your colored spells, Compulsive Research, Mystical Teachings, and Mulldrifter to keep the cards flowing, and a handful of counterspells backed up by Capsize to close the game out.

Your primary route to victory is going to be grinding people out with Mulldrifter and Pulse of Murasa. This is a great way to ensure that you stay ahead on cards, trade away with creatures on the board, and keep your life total out of the red zone. Unfortunately, this plan isn’t very good against combo decks, such as those featuring Temur Battle Rage and Inside Out. It can even be a little too slow against decks with Burning-Tree Emissary.

Enter the sweet tech. Stonehorn Dignitary changes the game against these fast combo decks. If they spend the first few turns cantripping to set up their combo, you can easily counter a spell, play a Prophetic Prism, and then resolve a Stonehorn Dignitary. Once you resolve one Stonehorn Dignitary, it becomes easier to chain them together. It doesn’t take long before you can start casting draw spells to find and resolve a Stonehorn Dignitary, or even a Ghostly Flicker to rebuy one or more Stonehorn Dignitary triggers. Against decks that can’t win outside of combat, you can even lock them out by setting up a loop with Ghostly Flicker, Mnemonic Wall, and Stonehorn Dignitary.

If you want to force your opponent to slow things down, this may be one of the better control shells in the format as things currently stand.


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